Friday, March 22, 2013

Wedding Arras (Wedding Arrhae)

One of the most important symbols used during a wedding is the wedding arras (wedding arrhae). My Mom told me that it symbolizes money and the promise of your husband to provide for you.

The wedding arras is usually a collection of coins provided by the couple or provided by your wedding gown designer as part of the package. It's usually placed in a small pouch or bag (or you can be creative) brought to the altar by a coin bearer. If you're using valuable coins make sure you ask one of your relatives or friends to secure it after the ceremony.

After the pamamanhikan my Mom gave me a small bag of coins. She said that my grandmother gave her the coins and she split it into three. One set for my sister, another for my brother and the last set for me. Both my brother and sister used the coins as arras for their wedding too. Using the coins my Mom gave me made the arras more valuable to us since it felt like my grandparents were around as well to witness our wedding.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Wedding Gown and Entourage Gowns Designer

Being creative and practical are two key skills you need while planning your wedding. With limited budget you need to make choices that can fulfill your heart's desire while being practical. I took that approach when I was working on the gowns for my wedding. I visited several designs in Metro Manila, but found them quite expensive. I just wanted a simple gown and I luckily found a great designer who I had good rapport with at a wedding fair. I decided to go another way though for the gowns of my entourage.

I wanted to involve my family in the preparations for my wedding so I got my niece, Patricia Apolo, to design the gowns for the entourage. She was skilled at it because she's done several weddings already even though she was still in high school during that time. My talented niece made these for my huge entourage (this is just a sample):

And after carefully choosing the right cloth and working closely with the seamstress I got exactly what I wanted. Here's how I pulled it off.

My talented niece has recently graduated from fashion design school and is ready to accept orders for designing. Inquire here.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Your Wedding Ring

When Sweetie started planning to propose to me he didn't have a clue where to get me an engagement ring. Good thing we had a friend, based in Cagayan de Oro, who's Mom owned a jewelry shop. He lost no time and enlisted her help in his grand proposal plan (and that included getting my ring size by stealth!). 

We decided to get our wedding rings from the same friend (Golconda Jewels in CDO). Sweetie wasn't comfortable wearing accessories (he didn't even wear a watch back then) and he was happy that I just wanted a traditional set. We went for white gold. The big plus was our rings were handcrafted Philippine gold and we got to meet the artisan who made it.

Here's the desk Manong works on to make jewelry.

Manong check the size of our rings.

Doing some polishing.

Our handcrafted white gold wedding rings. 
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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

How to Make Your Pre-Nup Video (Your Love Story)

Good friend and famous videographer, Buddy Gancenia, was our heaven-sent (gift from Ninang Janette) wedding story teller. Aside from documenting our wedding Buddy offered to do our pre-nup video as his wedding gift. We actually just planned to make our own since our budget was limited, so Buddy's offer was very much welcome.

We set a date to shoot the video almost 2 months before the wedding. I just wrote the script when Buddy was on his way from Quezon City to Paranaque. I crammed everything in less than 2 hours. It was quite hard to jump-start the script but this is more or less how I structured it (and basically what I do whenever friends ask me to make their pre-nup vids):

Important Highlights of Your Love Story
- When and where you met
- How things started
- How he courted you
- How you said yes
- Highlights of your relationship
- The proposal
What you love about each other (suggested by Buddy)

I had no idea what to do with our video since Buddy said he wanted to interview us. What I wanted to do was share the gazillion of photos and videos we had. One of my friends suggested I follow the flow of the movie, "100 Days of Summer". So I thought our theme should be related to the internet since we both loved blogging and our jobs were IT related. I then traced the timeline of our love story and discovered that our wedding day was the 800th day since we met each other. I then proceeded to unearth photos and videos to show highlights of our relationship leading to the proposal. The rest was Buddy's magical secret sauce.

Here's what Buddy came up with based on the script/timeline I wrote -

I've made a couple of pre-nup vids for my friends and so far all of them were happy with what I made. It was made out of love so I don't think I'd make one for people I don't know. Making your own video or working closely with your videographer would surely make your story-telling much more personal. 

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Do You Need Pre-nup Photos?

When Sweetie and I were planning our wedding one of the tasks we had listed was to have a pre-nup photo. Most of our plans though flew out the window since we lost 6 critical weeks from our planning time because of Typhoon Ondoy. Because we had to take care of other things we decided that we didn't need to have a formal pre-nup photo shoot because we had a gazillion of photos from the first time we met. We both loved taking photos so our real problem was choosing what to use.

Our dear friends, Markku and Hana, offered to do a pre-nup shoot for us, but I was so busy traveling around the country because of some work projects I just said we'd take up their offer for a post-wedding shoot (we haven't done it until now haha).

Sweetie joined me in one of my trips to Cagayan de Oro. Aside from work we managed to meet the artisan who hand-crafted our rings. My dear friend's Mom owned the jewelry store (Golconda Jewels) so we entrusted our rings to her (and Sweetie got my engagement ring from them too). Honey (my friend) brought us to see the Del Monte pineapple plantation and to have lunch at the golf course club house. And since we had our camera we decided to have some casual pre-nup photos taken. We thought it would depict us better than having a staged-all-made-up photo session (well that's just us).

I gave the same advise to friends who got married. Throughout their relationship I would take their photos and I eventually used this to surprise them with their love story video. Instead of getting them a traditional gift I printed for them photos from way back in the 90s to the present to show how their love progressed through the years. They were really happy about it and said it was good to see photos of the two of them since they were young (I guess I always knew that they'd end up together).

So my advise is, take as many photos throughout your relationship before tying the knot. This would should your family and the rest of your friends who didn't really see how your relationship grew. And well it's something you can show to your kids later on.