Monday, October 26, 2009

Real Weddings: A Romantic Spectacle

Jonathan Que-Kris Rea
Santuario de San Jose
The Penisnula Manila

The wedding of Jonathan and Kris could be easily characterized as elegant, charming, and timeless.

For the first time in my wedding planning career, it was the groom whom I met first, before the bride. You see, Jonathan Que, the groom, was into the wedding preparations himself as much as his bride, Kris Rea. During the initial meeting, I showed Jonathan some of the graphic designs I did for previous weddings projects, and how these materials tied everything together beautifully. Good thing Jonathan appreciated and believed in “branding” a wedding. He then asked me for another meeting, this time with Kris. He said that he was sure Kris would be excited when I present her some of my ideas for their wedding.

The second meeting was a breeze. Kris and Jonathan were easy to work with. Not only did they know what they wanted, but also they were open to suggestions. A mood board was conceptualized to help us out with the wedding planning. Here’s a peek into their gorgeous wedding.

On her wedding day, Kris was every inch a beautiful bride made even more stunning by Madge Lejano’s “madgician’s touch.” Felicity Son created a hairstyle which framed the bride’s charming face. Veluz Reyes designed an ethereal gown made of multi-layered organdy and topped with lace cutouts and fabric rosettes. The gown was dreamy, yet very modern. The flounce on the skirt created the illusion of Kris regally ambling down the aisle, as if walking on clouds –- truly a breathtaking sight! Niko Hernandez was in charge of the female entourage’s earth tone silk taffeta gowns which featured fabric cutout accents. Francis Libiran tailored a classic black suit for the groom. Grooming was done by Joel Estrelles by Make Up Studio Team. Kris carried an all-white, hand-tied bouquet of Ecuadorian roses, cymbidiums and gypsophilia arranged by Beth Amat of Eve and Company. The bridal bouquet matched Jonathan's boutonniere. The bridesmaids’ bouquets, like the bride’s, featured roses. To bring out the earth hues in their dresses, they also carried purple lisianthus and red celosias. The couple seized every chance to customize their wedding including their letterpressed invitations which highlighted a red damask pattern. This pattern was the common thread that tied together all printed items –- from the misalettes, table numbers, and menu cards, to the place cards and escort cards.
The couple named the tables after the places they have visited together. The adult guests learned their seating assignments from cards attached to small bags containing Hershey’s kisses in orange, red, and brown foil. Beth Amat was also responsible in making the Rigodon Ballroom of The Peninsula Manila brim with modern elegance. All-white arrangements were done on all tables. White cloth drapery and crystal beads cascaded from the ceiling. For a more vintage feel, the event stylist covered regular glass cylinders with gossamer fabric and lace –- the effect was simply romantic.
The guests had a gastronomic feast of Smoked Salmon with Garden Herbs and Dill Mousseline; Cream of Pumpkin Soup with Toasted Bacon Bits; Cajun Roasted Chicken Roulade with Caramelized Onion Confit; Seasonal Vegetables and Mashed Potato; and Mango Panna Cotta. The wedding reception hall resounded with the heartwarming message of the maid of honor and sister of the bride, Khristel Janna C. Rea, and the ceremonial toast led by Michael Anthony C. Lo, the groom’s best man. To Jonathan and Kris, may your love for each other thrive for as long as you live, and continuously inspire family members, friends or strangers, and all lovers around you.
All photographs courtesy of Lito Sy.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Martha Stewart Weddings Philippines / Issue 3

September 2009-February 2010

Second time to be featured in Martha Stewart Weddings. In this issue, not one, not two but three feature stories on my brides and yours truly can be seen on the glorious pages of this magazine. Enjoy! Grab your copies now.

SINCE THEIR FIRST charmed meeting nine years ago, Califronia-based couple Joelene Sarmiento and Remar Balatero have been running high on romance with the kind of love that comes straight out of a storybook. When asked about that fateful moment, the self-confessed opposites share a real-life story of love at first sight. Joelene muses, “I even asked him that same day when we would get married!” This fearless forecast caught Remar’s attention, and the rest, as they say, is history. Last year, with the sunset as his backdrop, Remar proposed to Joelene after an exciting day of snowboarding on Big Bear Mountain.

Baclayon Church offered a symbolic location, as it was the same place where Remar’s parents exchanged vows. “It was important for us to keep that tradition going,” says Joelene, whose trip to Bohol was her first to the province, and to the country, after fourteen years. The days leading up to the ceremony became even more memorable as guests went on tours and dinner parties, which all highlighted the island’s best.

The couple chose the vivid hues of bright green and magenta for their special day. Joelene adds, “We were also greatly inspired by the couples around us who continually show each other devotion, love and friendship in their many years together. All these make up the commitment and strength that it takes to make a marriage flourish.”

Above all, it was the pair’s overflowing love which made a lasting impression. As for the future, Joelene says, “Remar and I dream of a life filled with adventure. We hope to be blessed with the greatest adventure of all – children. ‘So as with all fairy-tale endings, this story is bound for “happily ever after.”

These pages, clockwise from far left: The newlywed couple beams happily at the altar.

Ernest Pascual, the couple’s coordinator designed the plum-colored invitations.

Joelene and her sister-in-law bought the bridesmaids’ dresses at bargain prices from an LA shop; a simple crystal brooch topped off the look.

Flowers served as subtle accents, like on this basket of petals.

Snowy white flowers star in the bride’s beautiful bouquet.

Tiny tots begin a light shower of petals along the church floor.

Vintage earrings from a thrift shop decorate this unity candle and matchbox pair.

A radiant Joelene awaits her cue to enter into the historic Baclayon church.

Clockwise from top left:

Rows of calla lilies lead the way up to the majestic altar.

Personalized M&Ms read “Sweet like candy to my soul,” a line taken from the couple’s favorite song.

The wedding cake, embellished with a damask pattern and silver studs, was made of delectable butter icing.

Chocolate favors offered bite-sized words of wisdom.

Diamond details enhanced the tiniest elements, such as these elegant matchboxes.

From top:

Each table was a vision in white.

Guests enjoy a hearty laugh.

The buffet of local treats included cookies in the couple’s initials.

Joelene and Remar in a candid moment.

Friends and relatives were greatly amused by one of the reception games.

Clockwise from top left:

Light pillars and drapes add a dramatic effect to the vast Dagohoy Ballroom.

Love poems rested on every table, all twenty five of them were personally chosen by the bride.

Tall and short centerpieces add clean touches to the candle-lit setting.

Every element at the table was in place for the lovely feast.

Heartfelt quotations greeted guests as they took their steps up to the grand ballroom.

Guests cheer on the husband and wife as they relish their first dance amid a shower of confetti.

Underneath the ostritch feathers, purple bow and platinum wrapping paper lay personalized social cards for each sponsor, given by the couple as tokens of thanks.


Ceremony: Baclayon Church

Reception: Bohol Tropics Resort

Gown: Veluz Reyes

Coordination: Ernest Pascual of Events! Events! and Supreme Weddings

Event Stylist: The Blue Grass Project (Michael Yu and Joseph Dumadag)

Videography: Jason Magbanua

Invitations: Craftmaster Invitations

Photography: Mimi and Karl

Cake: Lola Lilia’s Homemade Specialties

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Real Weddings: Romance is in the Air

Ricardo Pedrosa-Elena Belmonte
Madre De Dios
Tagaytay Midlands

Elena and Ric’s wedding was enchanting, captivating, and romantic.
Imagine how much pressure this wedding had generated earlier when this client couple finally chose me to be a part of their milestone. “We have great news for you, Ernest,” the groom-to-be said. “We have decided that you’d be our wedding coordinator because we believe that you are a man of style.” Gulp! I almost choked in fear – tremendous pressure, indeed.

Elena Belmonte had thought of only one distinctive look for her wedding to Ric Pedrosa: modern romantic. As luck would have it, the couple found the ideal sites that would reflect what they had in mind after several changes in the ceremony and reception venues. The final choice was Madre De Dios and Tagaytay Midlands where acres of lush greenery and the cool Tagaytay weather were perfect.

Elena dressed up at the Tagaytay Country Suites, and rode in a Jaguar Mark V which brought her to the chapel.

Florist and event stylist Jing Tanada spruced up the quaint chapel with white roses bundled together and tied around each pew. She covered the red carpet with white cloth and loose white rose petals. The bride didn’t want too many decorative touches clashing with and overwhelming the simplicity and natural beauty of the chapel.
Elena was a picture of authentic elegance. She was proverbially a sight to behold in her off-white illusion tulle Patrice Ramos-Diaz creation. Her wedding gown was accentuated by lace, floral appliqu├ęs, and three-dimensional fabric cutouts. In addition, it was punctuated by sparkling, strategically placed crystals.

The bride originally wanted white peonies for her bridal bouquet. Unfortunately, the flowers didn’t make it in time for the occasion. Jing made two equally gorgeous bouquets for her – one, a bundle of white hyacinths; the other, a cluster of Ecuadorian roses. Both were tied with silk ribbons. The groom also had two boutonnieres to match the bride’s bouquets as later, Elena astutely opted for the Ecuadorian roses as her church bouquet, and for the hyacinths as her reception bouquet.

The reception was simply breathtaking – with ambient lighting, crystal beads, and fabric draping from the ceiling, the perimeter added to the romantic vibes.
Each floral arrangement was a work of art. Kudos to Jing Tanada who made certain that Elena got her wish. Truly, romance was brimming all over the place. Each table had antique copper votive candleholders and handmade crystal napkin holders. The names of the guests seated in the presidential table were laid out in handmade place card holders. In fonts used for the invitation and the misalette, the names were printed on off-white board and then pasted on top of a bronze board with hand-embossed details. Shortly before the newlyweds entered the reception hall, Crystal, the evening show host, spearheaded a fun, moving-around ice-breaker. It made every one to loosen up a bit, and created a relaxed and festive mood for the occasion. The menu for the sit-down dinner consisted of Arugula with Basil Vinaigrette, and Cherry Tomatoes & Pine Nuts topped with Warm Goat Cheese & drizzled with Highlands Honey; Cream of Mushroom Cappucchino & Brandied Prawn Bisque served with Bread Rolls with Sweet Butter in demitasse; Lemon Sherbet with Russian Vodka (garnished with Mint leaves); US Beef Tenderloin Medallion with (more) Gongonzola Sauce; and pan-seared Lapu-Lapu with Potato Gratin. Immediately after, the couple presented an unexpected but leisurely change of gustatory pace – a dessert buffet from Bizu in time for the cake-cutting ceremony. The cake with tiny flowers was also from Bizu.
Each table had cards card on which the couple’s party rules were inscribed:
1. No calorie counting
2. Curfews not honored here.
3. Talk to somebody you don't know.
4. Indulge yourself with the yummy desserts.
5. Approach Ric and Elena anytime.
6. Enjoy a nightcap of alcoholic beverage.
7. Party hard and have fun!

The card also contained a poetic stanza that exhorted guests to:
“Dance as though no one is watching you
Love as though you have never been hurt before
Sing as though no one can hear you
Live as though heaven is on earth”
The night ended with a visibly overjoyed groom singing his heart out with the band, NATF, singing the couple’s favorite songs.
Lastly, I could not forget how the couple thanked me profusely in their speech: “To Ernest, our wedding coordinator, who has given us so much help, and who has likewise put up with our constant need for assurance… You are the best. This wouldn’t have been possible without you. Thank you for everything, and especially your good humor, which has helped lighten the preparation for this occasion.”

Watch Threelogy's Onsite Video here. All photos courtesy of Mimi and Karl.

Copyright 2008 Events! Events!