So it’s been two weeks and counting in this married life, and for some reason, I still can’t believe that I am now a wife. Hahaha. The feeling of happiness, relief, and excitement are all over the place. Yung para bang, “Yung pinaghandaan namin for the past 6 months, it’s finally over! Tapos na!” And while many were saying that it was a beautiful wedding (na agree naman talaga ako kasi God made sure that He will be glorified that day), I’d like to be honest by saying that it was the wedding that I never dreamed of. Kasi sa una pa lang, wala naman talaga akong dream wedding.
Yup! Wala. Siguro it’s just like the irony of being an architect and not having a dream house. Haha. Ewan ko ba. Well, the idea of getting married is there pero I didn’t have any picture of how I want it to happen. Kaya nung na-engage kami ni Darel last November, we had no idea on what we want for our big day. Zero. Start from scratch.
Why Beach Wedding and How We Ended Up in Zambales
Every engaged couple’s problem when preparing for their wedding is the venue. Kasi hindi uusad halos lahat kung wala ka pang location. So kami, we decided to look for options the next month after our engagement. Dahil we targeted to get married within 6 months, kelangan talaga namin mag-double time.
If you know us personally ni Darel, you would know na hindi talaga kami mapipirmi indoors, so we wanted it to be outdoors as much as possible. The top location was Baguio kasi kahit nasa labas okay lang kasi malamig naman. Pero nung nakuha namin yung response ng isang venue dun, wala na. Ayaw na namin kasi mahal. Hahaha. So sabi namin, sige try natin mag inquire ng beaches. Atleast, kahit nasa labas din, mahangin naman kasi tabing-dagat.
I did most of the research online. Ayoko ng big beach resorts kasi we have a target budget lang din. And besides, mas okay if walang ibang guests ng resort during the wedding. We had 3 options lang: one in Batangas, and two in Zambales. Initial plan pa nga was Pangasinan eh or La Union. Hahaha. Kaso sabi namin ang hirap na puntahan. We were really praying for God to help us decide on what venue to book. December na kasi nun, for sure by January baka mag-increase na sila ng prices. We’re thankful kasi 2 out of 3 resorts we visited, nasaktuhan namin na may wedding so nakita namin yung itsura nya pag may event.
So after much deliberation kung saan na nga ba namin gusto para maka-move on na din kami sa ibang items, we decided late December and surrendered it all to God. I thought, if our intention was to celebrate God’s greatness in our wedding, I’m sure He will make it all work-out kahit saan pang venue mapili namin. But if you will ask us what’s our deciding factor? Well aside sa cost and practicality, it was really this view. <3
Cost-Cutting and DIY-ing Almost Everything
My advice for brides-to-be? Do your research. There are a lot ways for you to cut down the cost and be creative, without breaking the bank. Be inspired by a lot of resources online. In my case, I happened to stumble upon this website last December and it has been my peg for my wedding: Belle & Sam’s Wedding. I got the idea of DIY pillows from them!
Our venue is not a big resort, so hindi talaga sila naghohold ng events madalas. It was a plus on our side kasi una, we can easily play around with the whole area without many hassle approvals or limitations. Unlike pag sa mga malalaking resorts ka na kelangan approved pa ng in-house stylist nila, etc etc. Ang kausap kasi namin sa venues namin, direct na with the owners. A big shout out to Tita Ofelia of La Andreax Beach Resort, and to Roy and Joanne of Casa Angelina / Casa Luzviminda for all the help!
While planning with Darel last December, I envisioned a simple wedding. Yung simple pero alam mong kaming dalawa yun. Haha. We wanted to share to our guests kung sino kami not only sa styling but sa overall na mangyayari. And so, with my knowledge in design and using my skills in AutoCAD and SketchUp HAHAHAHA, it got easier to explain to our suppliers (even to Darel) what we want. By the way guys, kung gusto nyo ko i-hire pag-usapan natin yan. Hahahaha!! But seriously, this was the fun part for me. I felt like it was a big project, at sarili ko yung client ko. Every time we present this to the suppliers, feeling ko may sense naman pala yung pagiging architect ko. Hahaha!
Super daming considerations just so ma-cut down namin yung cost. I was so specific on the materials I wanted to use kasi naka-estimate din sakin magkano aabutin yun. Hahaha. Darel and I were really hands-on kasi halos lahat DIY talaga. Workable sya for us kasi freelancers kami so pwedeng maging flexible yung time namin. Buti na lang din mahilig kami sa roadtrips kasi once a month kami pumupunta ng Zambales. Minsan, suma-side trip na din ng dagat. Haha.
So with the numerous Divisoria trips and the full-on pillow-making na akala namin imposible namin matapos, it was only by God’s grace lang talaga na nairaos namin lahat ng DIY. Hahaha. Kasi Do-It-Yourself doesn’t really have to be all by yourself. We’re thankful for friends and family who offered their time and energy to help us.
Let me tell you about the pillows! If you will notice sa 3D ko, may pillows na talaga noon pa. Kaso hindi ko alam saan pwede magrent ng pillows na big enough para maupuan. If bibili naman grabe ang mahal ng ganung size. So sabi ko sige, dahil may never been used naman ako na mini-sewing machine (I bought it last 2016, akalain mo nga naman nag ROI sya sa wedding hahahaha), magtahi na lang tayo. So Darel’s in charge of the painting, then ako sa pagtahi. Then with the help of our loving friends, natapos namin ang 170pcs!! Yehey! Yun na rin yung souvenirs namin kasi ayaw namin ng souvenir na hindi naman magagamit ng guests after. So diba, dual purpose: styling + souvenir na sya. Hahaha.
My Wedding Dress Is Only 8,000.00 Pesos
Yes! You’ve read that right! It was March nung nagka-problem kami sa unang magtatahi dapat ng dress ko. Ganun talaga minsan yung risk when you go for super low cost suppliers na hindi mo alam if worth it ba yung quality of service nila. So thank you Tantease for saving our lives. When I first saw their catalogue, parang mga pang-bridesmaids lang ata yung peg nila, or mga formal dresses. Hindi ata sila gumagawa ng pang bride. I was having second thoughts until I saw their Gabie dress (the red one in the slideshow below). Sabi ko “Hmmm.. parang pwede ito, gawin lang natin white tapos I-modify lang ng konti.” And that’s it! In less than a month, tapos na yung dress ko! Nauna pa sa kung ano bang isusuot ni Darel sa kasal. Hahaha.
It’s Not Your Typical Wedding Ceremony and Program
Personally, ayaw namin ni Darel ng sobrang tagal na wedding program. Gusto namin kasi maka-uwi pa yung mga guests at hindi super pagod. So marami kaming iniscratch off sa typical wedding just to cut down yung time. We didn’t have the traditional veil, chord, candle, etc. We just opted for the “mixing of the sand” and made sure na we have the singing of praises and just worship God. Kahit nga pre-nup photos wala din kami kasi hindi naman namin sya magagamit after. So ayun, video na lang ng preps. Even the choice of songs; my bridal march was Jason Derulo’s Marry Me. Hahaha. Memorable kasi yun in our love story ni Darel. :) Tapos ang hirap mag-isip ng song for the entourage party pag sila naglakad. So sabi ko kay Darel I’ll let him decide. Tutal yun din yung song nya pag sya yung naglakad. And dahil hindi kami mahilig sa typical slow love songs, pinarinig ko sa kanya yung favorite playlist ko ng violin covers. And we arrived at The Show Goes On (Lupe Fiasco) mashed up with Pachelbel’s Canon. Hiphop na classical. Perfect!
Struggles and Joys
Maraming stressful moments during the whole preps. Yung paghahanap pa nga lang ng suppliers sobrang hirap na eh. When you have a destination wedding tapos yung suppliers mo lahat galing sa Manila, wala. Talong talo ka na sa out-of-town fees. Pero buti na lang God is so good na He led us to wonderful suppliers, both Manila and local based. Grabe, I can’t even express in writing how amazing God’s timing was nung mga time na nagssource pa lang kami.
We’re also thankful for our on-the-day coordinators, headed by Darel’s sister, Ate Dane. Grabe. Ang hirap mag-set up ng DIY destination wedding. I mean, kahit wala naman ako tinulong nung the day before kasi ako yung bride (haha), ramdam ko yung pagod nila. Yung tipong umuulan pa ng malakas the day before. Kung gusto nyo malaman gano kahirap, I’ll ask them to write about it, or di kaya call them. Pa-kwento kayo. Haha.
There are many things I could tell about how God taught us valuable lessons while preparing for this big event. At kulang ang 2000 words para lang ma-kwento ko lahat sa inyo. Indeed, this wedding isn’t what I dreamed of kasi lahat ‘to in the process lang naman namin pinag-decide-an. And it wasn’t just me who decided on everything. It was a product of our teamwork, good compromise, and what works best for the both of us. Kung tutuusin, it was way beyond than what I could ever dream of. Pero ganun talaga si God eh. He works in magnificent ways just so we could always bring Him all the credit that belongs to Him alone.
Why We Still Believe in Marriage
After writing everything you’ve just read, I just want to share why we still wanted to get married. Kasi sa totoo lang, why bother kung hindi naman na uso yan nowadays. Diba? Hindi practical magpakasal, kasi pano kung hindi naman pala kayo mag work-out edi ang hassle pa kasi legally committed ka. Gastos lang ang kasal, sabi nila.
In this world we live in, it’s so easy to justify that marriage isn’t important anymore. You can do the same things naman whether kasal kayo or hindi. And that’s the problem. We forget that God designed marriage. And if God designs something, ibig sabihin it’s important.
Getting married doesn’t necessarily have to be a grand wedding. The beautiful dresses, the ceremony set-up, the kind of flowers, or even the food in the reception, it all doesn’t matter when we talk about marriage. Bonus na lang lahat yun. What matters most is your covenant before God that you are surrendering your union to Him, the One who created it. He made it for loyal partnership between a man and a woman, and the ability to pursue Him — together as a husband and wife.
I’ll be posting wedding day photos next!!
A BIG THANK YOU!!
Venue: La Andreax Beach Resort, Casa Angelina, Casa Luzviminda
Catering: Viring’s Heritage Cuisine Catering Services
Photo & Video: Imagine This Creatives
Sound: DJ Mike of Soundrave Lights & Sound
Lights and Genset: Audio Frequency
Cocktails: Proudly Promdi
Lechon (and tent): Dasha Thai Cuisine
Cake: Bethany Dream Cakes
Peacock Chair: Peacock Chairs Pampanga Vintage 1970’s
HMUA: TeamRed – MakeUp by RedGa
Wedding Rings: Radiant Jewelry
Wedding Dress: Tantease
Darel’s Barong: Onesimus
Flowers: Nesly’s flower services
Crew meal: LC’s
Printing of Program Fans: Joshua Villaruz
Officiating Pastor: Rev. Rey Avante
Host: Dave Capule
OTD Coords: Dane Najos, Mitch Sy Quimsiam, Jojen, Tins of Purple Belle Events
**And to our friends who offered their help!**