We had exactly 1 year to prepare. If I had to be really honest, it did not come as a surprise at all. (which can either be a good thing or a bad thing) I’m kind of proud of us actually. I think we’re both mature and invested enough in the relationship. We were both sure that we’ll marry each other. We both know what we wanted out of this relationship. There were no pretensions. We were vocal and there never was a battle of who gets to care less. In this time of no commitment relationships, we’ve always been been transparent.
We planned ahead. We talked about things early on. Whenever we see something wedding related, we were both comfortable enough to say, ‘Bab, I want this for our wedding’, ‘Babe I already asked for a quotation’, ‘Can we get this for our wedding?’. We can talk freely without the fear that the other will think that the relationship is going too fast.
It was October 2018 when my then boyfriend proposed during one of our vacations in Coron, Palawan.(check out how he proposed here!). We returned in Manila and when we were settled. We already looked for our Church and Venue. I already wrote about our experience here, tips and tricks too for early preparations. (read all about it here!)
For this post, I just would like to do a run down of the different experiences we had to deal with during that year of preparation, (One, hoping it would help others and Two, because no matter what challenges we had to face with? I’d like to remember everything!)
Wedding Gown: The biggest worry of all brides.
At first, I was fairly certain that I wanted a mermaid cut. I was slim and people always complimented my body. (not that I’m Kim or Kylie) but I had the right amount of chest and bum good enough to wear a mermaid cut. But as the days passed, my friends would always make a hint that they already know what type of gown I would wear. So just to go against all of their guesses, I went with . . . an A-Line Cut.
Apart from the shape of the gown, you also have to consider your neckline, the trail, your veil and the amount of details you want. Right off the bat, I wanted a clean, minimalist V-Neck Gown – that’s certain.
To give you an idea of how hard it is to settle on 1 final peg, I had about 300 pinterest gowns, messaged about 30 couturiers, followed 15 bridal accounts on IG and more. I also visited 3 couturiers and ended with a friend of my mom, Rose Lagdameo.
I experienced the tiniest worry when Rose decided to follow my mom and alter the neckline of my gown. Whew! It’s a good thing the final output turned out to be exactly how I pictured it.
It’s a Pronovias 2018 Castle Gown – a Mikado A-line Shape with low cut V-neck front and back, triangular tulle armholes and godets in tulle skirt with beaded and fabric flowers.
Groom’s Suit: The only thing groom has a complete say on. 😛
A little background: We initially wanted a Maroon-Gold themed wedding but given that our date was November 24, we thought it would seem more of Christmas theme than a wedding and the fiancee had doubts if he can pull off a maroon suit. So we went with our second best choice: Dark Emerald and Champagne / Gold.
And just like how all men are, he didn’t actually have hundreds of pegs. We just attended a wedding fair and since Felipe & Sons is one of the more popular ones, we approached their booth and looked for the perfect Dark Emerald material. —- and tadah! They do have it!
It was such a smooth transaction. Ate Violy was very attentive and suggestive of what would go best with our choices. She even helped us choose the buttons, our neck ties, socks and even the color of our shoes and belt! It was a perfect fit and I honestly wanted to marry my fiancee right then & there on his second fitting. He looked absolutely dapper. ❤
Entourage Proposal: Unnecessary but happy to do it
I really wanted to give our entourage something they can keep since they will be spending for their own attire. I’ve been saving different ideas from pinterest, wawies, Instagram and the likes.
For our Male Entourage: Clinique Happy Perfume, a handkerchief and a little message for our handsome entourage.
For our Female Entourage: Champagne Robes from SMGM Bridal Robes for our morning pictorial, almost the exact pair of earrings I wore when my husband proposed and a letter for my dearest friends.
I really enjoyed doing the DIYs! I scouted all the layouts from the letter, to their names, to the font that we used, which I printed (in the o**ic*) Haha. Hubby also participated by doing the ribbon that we placed outside the box.
Prenup: Our facial rehearsal for the big day!
I was a bit confused for our theme. Initially, I really wanted to use the venue that I was eyeing on for our reception but we had to change since the rate was over our budget. When my husband and I talked, we finalized on three themes: Nature, Our Love Story and Everyday Life.
For Nature, we agreed on Treasure Mountain. For our Love Story, we wanted an office set-up and even asked if we can actually shoot in the office building where we met. Unfortunately, an hour would already cost too much. For the last theme, everyday life of husband and wife, we wanted to shoot in an airbnb where we can just read books, cook, bake, read newspaper and all the mundane things that will show how our lives will turn out after our wedding.
Being the aesthete that I am, I wanted our clothes to match so we even practiced and bought some new ones for the prenup shoot.
On the day of the shoot, we woke up at 2 in the morning, drove to Rizal at 3 am for our makeup since shoot starts at 6:00 am. We were really exhausted by the time we ended but happy with the raw output from our Photo-Video team.
Food: One of the biggest expectations that we need to meet.
It’s always the food that people remembers, we’ve been told time and again. Our Venue have several accredited suppliers. Originally, we wanted to go with the more famous one but was so disappointed during the Food Tasting.
We had 3 Food Tastings! Hahaha. And relieved to be hearing so many kind words with our choice of food. 😀
Make-up: Something that can make or break the bride
Gahh. One of the nerve wracking decisions. I had my dream MUA but like all brides, we need to learn to compromise. My dream artist costs like Php 60,000 so obviously, it was over our budget. I tested with three MUA during bridal fairs.
I don’t know why hair artists really like doing hairs like the one in the middle where the top of the head is flat. I hated the flat top big hair. We closed with the MUA where I was wearing black.
I suggest that no matter how broad the portfolio of your dream MUA, please do a trial makeup first.
Entourage Gown: This should also go with the theme of your wedding
I was certain I wanted a clean cut minimalist mikado gowns for my friends. I wanted it to complement with my gown but not over power it. (since my wedding gown is minimalist too)
I loved that our scheduled fittings turned out to become our bonding moments. It’s nice to know that my friends from our other groups are now friends too. ❤
Pick your entourage wisely! There are expenses along the way such as bridal showers, shoes and accessories that they need to put together. There are weekends they will need to sacrifice but the real ones will happily do it.
Did I mention I personally drew their gowns too?
Survival Kits: A bribe from the heart
We didn’t even think about this! It’s a good thing we are a part of this group in facebook called wawies where other couples share their wedding ideas. Survival Kits are basically snacks and drinks for your suppliers.
We prepared survival kits both in our prenup shoot and in the actual wedding day. Not only was it given to suppliers but we also prepared some snack for the prep room where our entourage will get ready and in the respective cars we will be using too. 🙂
Prep Dress: Unnecessary but Aesthetics. 😛
I’m known to be a bit maarte and because admittedly am, I was very specific with my prep dress. I didn’t want it to be a robe. So yes, I drew the dress that I wanted and asked several couturiers.
Annndddd, Embellish Dress Shop was able to pull it off exactly. ❤
Signage: Something in theme but shows off personality
I’m a huge F.R.I.E.N.D.S fan!!! and the hubby is a pretend-fan, I insisted our signages to be friends-themed. ❤ It’s something I personally worked on. ❤ and I loved the outcome.
Aside from that, we wanted to show our love story and some little facts about our relationship so I also worked on an infographic. ❤ We stayed with our white marble layout.
Supplier Gifts: To show gratitude
At first I really thought it was such an added expense but as our wedding day approaches, we got to know our suppliers better and proved to be worthy of small gifts. ❤
For our Coordinator, since they really went above and beyond, we gave them cash gifts, Perfume for our event stylist, bath sets for the three teams of our HMUA, Goodies Basket for our AE in Venue, Photo & Video Team, Musician and Host.
Prizes, Awards and Small Tokens
We planned everything together with our host who also helped us think of our prizes. ❤
So for our small entourage, the bearers and flower girls, we each gave them chocolate goodies. I was not able to take a good picture, but for our principal sponsors, we gave them a bottle of wine and chocolates. The same goes for our trusted entourage.
We also had some awards to be given out and prizes to go with them. For the best dressed young ones, we gave them beers and make up and for the somehow older crowd, we gave them wine and pans. ❤
For some of our games, we gave out Starbucks GC and powerbanks. ❤
Planning was so stressful, full of pressure and unsolicited opinions but damn, I miss it! It’s such a joy to be wholeheartedly involved in every aspect and to see your ideas and dreams come to life on the best day of your life. ❤