A&M wedding day tales and our SDE

Before starting off (part of) our wedding day stories, Atsushi and I want to thank our friends and family who had set aside some of their time, travelled to Tagaytay from Manila and even flew in from Japan, Indonesia, South Korea and Davao, to be with us in our wedding day. We can’t thank you enough. Honto ni arigatou Gozaimashita. 🙂

To our friends now in different parts of the globe (US, Canada, Singapore, Japan, Korea, Indonesia) who wanted to be with us yet can’t, thank you still for being supportive and for helping us during the preps. We would always remember the help you gave us. 🙂

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I was pretty emotional the couple or so weeks before our wedding. When hubby arrived though on the 23rd, I had to set aside being emotional and focused more on what’s left to be done. End result, it was hubby who was more like the bride (feeling anxious, worried etc) while I was behaving more like another coordinator – I had to keep focused on what’s next to be done. We were not just organizing a wedding but was organizing as well a vacation for my family and friends (who was here from Davao) and hubby’s family and friend (who came from Japan).

So yes, the day before the wedding was very hectic, not because we had to tie some loose end details of the wedding but that because we had to fetch up our families from different airports and have fittings for the entourage (they’re out of town/country so that was the only time we can have the fitting). I had to make sure as well that our other guests whom we’re not picking up at the airport gets to their respective hotels safely. I wasn’t feeling so bride-y at all but more like a tour guide. So in turn, groom-hubby had to feel for the both of us.

In any case, because I really cannot attend to the preps anymore, I was really very thankful for Detalye’s efficiency. And creativeness!!! Anyways, will post a separate blog about Detalye once I receive our photos from Dino Lara’s team (so looking forward to it!!). Suffice it to say that i’m another satisfied Detalye bride. Oh yes there are hitches here and there, but it definitely wouldn’t mar my excellent rating on them.

By the way, as we still don’t have with us photos from Dino Lara, we are thankful to our friends who were fast in uploading our pictures in Facebook. This one was among my favorites.

Anyways, I digress.

Come wedding eve, after having had tucked all Tagaytay newcomers in their beds, I was able to sleep early. I slept for seven hours – to which both Erika and my HMUA Irene Sy-Go commented that this is most unusual since a lot of brides doesn’t get that much sleep the night before the wedding. I do agree considering I have had bouts of insomnia during preps.

Was up early (7am is early for me, yes) on the wedding day. Had some quiet breakfast inside the house while my family ate in the gardens of Yellow Coco. I was yet to make my vows and that was the only time I had hence I willed myself to make use of it.

When Dhonna called in from US, we were already in Ville Sommet’s Chalet and Irene was doing Mama’s makeup and Rica (hairstylist) on Kat’s hair. At that time and up till after lunch, I was feeling so calm. No butterflies in the stomach whatsoever at all. In fact, I actually didn’t feel anything at all. Except that I kept looking at the sky and praying that it wouldn’t rain until after the reception (to which my prayers were answered by the way). I felt so calm I was actually wondering if the calmness I was feeling is at all normal for a bride.

Halfway through the makeup though, I already felt some hammering on my chest. It was so loud I was thinking Irene might hear it. Rica kept on cracking jokes to calm me down. It helped actually. The nervousness was gone once pictorials started though. Our wedding was at 6pm hence we had our “first look” before the ceremony.

Hubby is really shy when posing in front of the camera but I am very thankful that Atsushi played along with what our camera guys asked from him during our wedding day. And yes, he kissed me a lot of times. Yey! 😀

My nervousness came back when we were getting prepared for me to walk down the aisle. I can hear “Ikaw” being sang as my entourage walked and I was almost teary-eyed as I remembered how I sang “Ikaw” in a number of weddings already and that I can’t believe this time, it is MY wedding.

Okay, I willed myself not to cry during our wedding. But blogging about our wedding now, made me cry. It was a good thing I am blogging this while Hubby is home ’cause then hubby can hug me as I cry myself silly. That “it’s my turn this time” thingy cracked me up. 😛

So, my nerves was really all in knots just right before the walk, whilst “Two Words” was being played. Good thing Richie was there to encourage me.

Jumping on to the reception. I suffered a terrible migraine from right after the ceremony until well into dawn. Hence am really thankful my pain didn’t show during the entire reception, not even during our short number. I just couldn’t eat K’s good food though. I can only eat enough to satisfy my hunger but not too much else I’d throw up again.

As we look back, Atsushi and I were really happy that our prayers for a beautiful wedding was answered. To have our guests tell us it was a beautiful and successful wedding infused with a lot of details makes me realize all the more that all the hard work was worth it. Even Taal cooperated; answered prayer.  😀  Even the insect kept to our colors haha!

We wanted a small wedding. My original dream wedding was actually in a beautiful island in Cebu/Bohol with only 50 guests. But of course, come actual dream wedding planning for Tagaytay wedding, it has to be bigger. All those who confirmed their attendance showed up hence all the airplane origami escort cards that EJ (of Detalye) made were brought home by the guests. Happy. We had a total of 74 guests. Ninety nine percent of the guests stayed until the reception ended. The 1% went home after Jason’s SDE was shown, which was actually just roughly 15minutes before reception program ended. Happy.

Anyways, I’ll have my ratings (and share my kilig!! with suppliers’ outputs) in another post. Most, if not all, of our suppliers were commendable actually. Except for one. I am still thinking if even the negative review is worth posting here in our blog. I really don’t want to think about the group anymore – the group which had given me a heartache ever since we got in contact with them. It makes me think though, we probably got the “pirated” one – considering how out of tune they were. Yes, their performance was one that would make you say, “Is this really XXX?” I wish they recorded how they performed that night. That way, they can assess how badly they performed.

Hmmm, in restrospect though, I find myself really upset whenever I performed really bad. So probably, since they themselves are professionals, they must be terribly embarrassed and tortured about the bad performance. So I think it’s decided. I will not be mentioning them again on this blog, bad review or otherwise. For both sides’ sakes.

For now though, am sharing Jason Magbanua’s same-day-edit (SDE) for us.

Segue: A lot have asked us why an evening wedding? Trust that considerable thought has been spent on it and that a lot of factors has been considered. And in truth, part of the reason why we finally settled for the 6pm wedding (it has to be April 30 in Caleruega) was so that we can have Jason Magbanua personally cover our wedding. Of course, our decision was correct.

Jason is simply brilliant. He had the music we picked run continuously and then seamlessly inserted the part of my vows where I sang. End result: hubby’s family and some other guests (even Kat who has been my roomie for a number of years) and some suppliers asked if I sang the entire song. Haha! In turn, since Atsushi’s vows were not included (Hubby had two versions of his vows. He read the scratch paper version. I loved the stationery version), Jason must have had decided to have Atsushi’s face on focus for a long time. End result: people has been teasing hubby that it was his promotional video to launch his new career as an actor – LOL.

More than that, there were a lot of other aspects in our SDE that I loved – among others, the sequence of Mayumi hanging her head followed by Kawauchi-san raising his; the timing of the piano’s rythmn to the lighting of the lamps.

Anyways, the song is Angela Aki’s version of Kiss from a Rose. Hubby and I used to play this while chatting in Skype – him on guitar, me on vocals. We love this version much more than Seal’s. Angela Aki didn’t just translate the song to Japanese, by the way. She made an altogether different lyrics. Good thing hubby found an mp3 of this song and hence was able to give it to Jason, 2 days before our wedding. And yes, we were practicing it before with only Youtube’s help.

Enjoy! Hubby and I can’t get enough of our video haha. I hope the same goes for you. 🙂

(By the way, Jason gave us the video in .vob format and we had to convert it just so we can upload it here. End result: resolution and quality was sacrificed during the conversion process.)

And oh, I also tagged Lene-Dee Dragon. She was the one who designed our giveaway tags which was focused towards the end of the video. The idea of having the fringes was Erika’s (Detalye) brainchild, on the other hand. When I saw it, I couldn’t help but gush about it. Kilig! 😀

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2 weeks countdown

Have to write everything down, to organize my thoughts and plan the next course. And since i’m writing, might as well post it in our wedsite. 😉

  • misalette sent to the printers to revise the coversheet. Will feature that supplier later when I have time, she’s  worth a post. Thanks to Leah for referring her. I had to revise some parts though since we wouldn’t be singing some of the responses. If not for Dhonna’s help, I wouldn’t have been able to finish the misalette. The template I referred to before doesn’t have the responses since they were all sang.
  • booked our accommodation for when Atsushi arrives here in Manila. We were prepared to pay the published rate but still I asked if they have discounts for long stays, just in case. The reply: none. But when they did email me to advise the bank details for money transfer, they gave us 1400php discount per night. Swell. 🙂
  • thankful to Jeckoy and Jonathan for obliging us on our request, even at the last minute. We owe you guys! 🙂
  • will meet up with Mang Rey Casedo tomorrow for the remaining three barongs
  • will meet up with MPO on sunday with Edna for rehearsals. Oh, I still have to look for directions how to get to MPO’s office
  • have to buy matches (and try to prettify them as much I can) and candles for the offertory. The matches I only remembered just this evening.
  • was able to send to Jason our SDE/cinematic highlights song preferences albeit Jason might not be able to see it since he’s on a vacation now in the US.
  • still no accessory. This one is proving to be quite difficult to find. I’ve searched his and los already for the one that i would love at first sight. Oh, well, I actually found the perfect one yesterday but it’s leaning towards the expensive side already. 
  • still no “something borrowed, something old”
  • lovely, lovely, lovely gown. thanks to Richie. Guests will surely not be bored looking at our back 🙂
  • transpo matrix still under clarification. emails emails.
  • wedding datasheet still under preps
  • napkin flowers still in the cellophane waiting to be picked
  • program still to be updated
  • El Nido trip already finalized. Goodness they do ask for a lot of documentations!
  • booked Antonio’s for dinner-with-parents (yet to wait for their confirmation)
  • browse through more pictures and have it developed
  • chase after IPL machine (this would have been a good blog had I more time)
  • pack the rest of my things here in the apartment before the next week ends
  • rsvp guests. emails emails, text text
  • guest list and seating arrangement
  • look for that TD for the principal sponsors gifts
  • write my vows and memorize
  • memorize the last two lines of our song – it’s hard believe me. i’ve been trying for the last 2 weeks already
  • still more sessions with dentist…the last two sessions each took half of my day. I assume the other 2 or 3 would be the same.

So, okay, anybody want to lend me an extra arm and leg? 😀

9 weeks and counting!

Nine weeks left till our wedding and i think we have almost everything down pat already. Almost. 🙂

Met with Erika and EJ for our invites yesterday morning. Happiness!!! 😀 I’m still working on the invites and I figure it’ll take at least an additional one whole day to finish the RSVPs, addressing and most of all, WRAPPING our invites hence I’d probably be able to start its distribution by Tuesday hopefully. Excited!! Thank you Lene and Erika!! Will talk about the invites in a more lengthy post later, once they’re all out.

Had my 3rd fitting with Richie as well yesterday. The moment I caught sight of my gown, I sighed “ahhhhh” dreamily almost ending with a high-pitched “ahhhhh” whilst giggling. I kept on saying thank you to Richie and her staff. And they in turn tell me it’s not yet finished; that there’s more. I-just-can’t-wait. I remembered a bride’s post on Richie’s FB page, something about “the journey of the bridal gown”. And indeed, it is the same for me. We talked about the latest Puey Quiñones scandal and I saw how Richie cringed with the stories. Really, the scandal was just too much, isn’t it? Anyways, one thing noteworthy with Richie: she doesn’t consider it beneath her to bend and measure me up, help me undress, dress up and even try and help me with my shoes! With this last one though, I just had to say “It’s okay Richie, I can handle it” because it’s just so embarrassing to have Richie help me with my shoes. One thing I love meeting up with Richie is that she, her staff and her shops (all four of them including her condo and Hidalgo’s library haha) are all full of positive vibes – positive vibes that a bride should surround herself even more especially with all the stress of the wedding preps.

Okay, got to go back to my invites! 😀

The Rise of Philippine EPC: When??

I posted below article in my personal blog and deemed of reposting it here when I realized that I know of two wedding suppliers who did the other way around.

I know that Richie Ortega-Torres went to New York to study about fashion design. After a few experiences, she packed her bags and went back here, established a couple or two fashion-related businesses employing 50 or so people.

Roughly, i’ve gathered that Pat Pastelero also studied in New York, and later on went back here to apply and share what she has learned.

There’s a big possibility that they had others reasons of going back here; reasons that I wouldn’t know about. Still though, a number of things are certain:

  • the fashion/events styling /wedding industries benefited with their return
  • not only do they offer services that are world-class but that they also share their world-class knowledge
  • they helped in getting more people get employed with the shops they’ve opened.

I am not pointing fingers on this though because I myself don’t want to live here in Manila for the rest of my life. Of course, I want to be with my husband in Japan! But then, given this, maybe I shouldn’t expect that I’ll ever witness the “rise of Philippine EPC”. But then again, who knows? We have enough brains here still, in the current Philippine EPC industry. Who knows indeed? Because if they can do it, why can’t we?

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A contact in Twitter retweeted the article below in Arabian Oil and Gas website about the rise of South Korean contractors. True, our company has actually lost a couple or two projects to South Korean contractors where one (or two) was a project owned by our company’s long-time Client.

Sure, they pose a threat to other competitors, especially to our company (or at least my husband’s, since I have just already recently resigned). But then foremost in my thoughts is the question: When will Philippine EPC have its own rise?

Our engineers and professionals has been highly appraised worldwide. My husband even attended a lecture recently, held by an esteemed Japanese lecturer with international credentials under his belt, where that same lecturer has talked highly of the Filipino people having a lot of potential and being very capable.

And yet, “The Rise of Philippine EPC” is near impossible at the moment. Brain drain does the job. We gather enough experience here at home and when we have enough, our wanderlust, our longing to prove our mettle in the bigger field, our wanting to have better salaries, makes us want to pack our bags and be part of the working force of other countries.

I myself am guilty of this. And if truth be told, I don’t want to spend the rest of my life working here in Manila – the city stresses me out (it’s not the same story with other cities though). But if each engineer or professional thinks in exactly the same way, give or take a few other reasons besides, then I do think we will not ever witness “the rise of Philippine EPC”. Not in our lifetime anyway.

http://www.arabianoilandgas.com/article-8505-the-rise-of-the-south-korean-contractor/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

2nd gown fitting

My phone broke down sometime early January and so all my info as well as pictures and recordings in that phone is now irretrievable. Including pictures of me in my gown during my second fitting. 😦 It’s just fine as well since Hubbie is really not supposed to see it before the wedding. I remember how Richie was very particular with it. See, Hubbie and I went to Richie’s studio together so that he can have his barong fitting at the same time that I can have my gown fitting. But Richie really did make sure that Atsushi will not even have a glance on the gown. Cute! 🙂

Hence, no pictures here. but the verdict? Two things I learned which so negates my previous assumptions:

  1. I thought rusching can highlight my tummy. But no. As Richie puts it, the rusching actually adds texture to the bodice which can then help hide what needs to be hidden.
  2. The rusching extends beyond the waistline and close to the hips. I thought this would make me shorter. But no. I actually have never seen myself as tall as I saw myself during the fitting. Apparently, extending the torso can add to the illusion of height.

Silk chiffon and tulle – dreamy. Love it.  😀

There’s one big hitch though. Horror of horrors –  I didn’t fit my gown!!! There was  some amount of pulling and tugging just so we can close the zipper almost halfway. But no can do. We had our second fitting a week after New Year. Considering our food consumption over the holidays, it was understandable why I didn’t fit my gown. Horrible.

Now though, I think i’m back to my old waistline. Can’t wait for our 3rd fitting this weekend!! 😀

Recuerdos de la Alhambra

I’ve been planning to make a post about the meet-ups Hubbie and I had with our suppliers last early January. But I never really got around to it what with other stuff that needs to be done. And if i’d do so now, it’d be almost like stale news.

Still though, i’m gonna share our meet up with Dino Lara in Seattle’s Best in Greenbelt last January 6. I already met Dino before when I booked him and he got me teary-eyed with his plans for our photoshoot. So I really wanted Hubbie to meet Dino before our wedding. It being early January, almost like the middle of their December-January super peak schedule, I know Dino is terribly terribly busy. Still though, he cleared an hour of his schedule to meet up with us. Note: A week after our meetup, Dino posted a shoutout in his FB apologizing to couples whom he wasn’t able to meet up because of his crazy schedule; saying thanks for booking him still. And with that, I loved Dino even more. haha.

We are very thankful as well for Jason who only had 2 free days on January (yes only 2 days without a shoot on a 31-day month!!) and yet he also made himself available for an hour of meetup. Thankful as well for Richie who met us for 2 mornings on a month that’s hectic for her. And for Erika and EJ for having a long chat with us. Really, December and January is a crazy month for weddings.

Anyways, back to Dino. We talked about photography details, differences of one photographer to another, his plans on our call time for the photoshoot because we want to have daylight shots, etc etc. Being reflective ourselves, Hubbie and I really like Dino because even with only an hour of chatting, we can already surmise that he’s quite a philosophical and reflective person.

At some point of our conversation, I told Dino that Hubbie was really good with the guitar and that Jason mentioned that Dino is into guitars now. And so from then on the two men with me talked about guitars and songs.

Dino said he dreams of the day that he can finally play Recuerdos de la Alhambra. And you know what? Hubbie already played it to me before, and beautifully at that! I think it was one of those pieces that he played to me wherein I asked him if he played a CD instead of playing the guitar himself. haha.

Please do check out this video to see how beautiful (and difficult!) it is.

And of course I was very proud of Hubbie at that time! ^_^ (As I always am). If not for the sad notes, I would have requested Hubbie to play this on our reception. But no can do ne because it’s sad.

Please, allow me to gloat since it’s our wedsite anyways. hehe. So proud of Hubbie. 😀

ruched tulle

When I went to meet with Richie, the first time, in her condo I absolutely had no idea what my gown preference was. Yes, I initially looked up a website or two on wedding gowns and there were at least 2 designs that I liked although I really wasn’t like, head over heels in love with it. More importantly, I wasn’t sure if they will be good on me what with my petite frame and all.

So I went to Richie totally clueless on the types of cloth used in wedding gowns and totally clueless on what gown I want except for the fact that I absolutely wouldn’t want a mermaid-cut gown on me simply because mermaid-cut gowns are only for tall women which very well i’m not.

I went to meet with Richie with the sole intent that I will give her full helm on designing my gown knowing that she’s much better at this than I do. Because I absolutely have no idea on the cloth industry, Richie and I didn’t talk about gown fabrics so much. But we did talk a lot about a LOT of other stuff, mostly wedding-related preps. She gave me her gown sketch a week after.

What made me go and inquire with Richie is that I loved her bridal creations even when they vary from one bride to another. I wondered at this since I can’t seem to pinpoint a design that once you see, is really Richie. I learned why so the next time we met. It was because she designs her gowns to suit the bride’s personality.

Even when the bride doesn’t realize it at first. Tough one, eh?

Seven months into the preparations, I can now identify silk organza from ordinary organza, from silk chiffon to tissue chiffon and tulle, the lovely, dreamy tulle where 4 months ago, I absolutely have no idea what a chiffon looks like. Before, I thought that all wedding gowns are made of some silk with embroidery and beadwork.

Nowadays, when I look at wedding magazines and websites, I most likely am drawn and would fall for gowns that create that surreal and dreamy effect. And when I realize (or get to read) that it was made of tulle, I go hoity-toity and hyper because I know Richie is making a tulle gown for me.

And it kinda amazes me how Richie was able to sense what my preference was, long before I realized it. Richie perceived i’m all for that dreamy and romantic effect even before I knew I want that effect with my gown.

When I saw the cover of Metro Wedding’s latest issue, I just got so excited I wanted to read the magazine even when I was still queueing for the cashier. Kristine Hermosa’s gown was just so lovely!!! Yet I couldn’t decipher whether it was made of tulle or silk chiffon. Although I am positive Richie will be using both materials on my gown, still, I wanted to confirm with Richie – I loved the tulle ruching in Kristine’s gown and I want to confirm ASAP if it was the same thing that i’m having.

I’m really glad Richie obliged and gave me a peace of mind. Yes, it seems to be made of tulle. Happy!

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