May 22, 2009

We are happy to announce that the groom-to-be has found his SHOES! After a couple of trips to David Jones, a lot of hemming-and-hawing, and a very patient sales assistant, we left David Jones with the groom-to-be’s wedding shoes in hand and a beaming groom-to-be.

It was gorgeous, it was Zegna (it will so match his suit!), it was on SALE, and it was pretty much the only pair we both liked. The rest were either too shiny, too pointy, to lacklustre, too odd-shaped, etc.

If anyone thought that the bride-to-be loved her shoes, you should’ve seen him lovingly carry his shoes into the car, cheekily strapping the seatbelt across the dark grey striped shoe box. It looked ridiculous and if anything it only cracked us up, but it’s nice to know that the bride-to-be has found her shoelover match.

I guess that makes us sole-mates huh? Ok too corny. Meanwhile, we cannot stop raving about the fantastic service we’ve been receiving at the David Jones city store. Highly recommended if you want gorgeous suits, gorgeous shoes, fantastic service and if you want to walk out feeling like a million bucks even though you’ve just spent one yourself.

Ladies and gentlemen, Groom’s Shoes? CHECK!


It’s funny how it all begins – an idea, followed by a long checklist, the sleepless nights trying to figure things out (and sometimes nightmares – oh you wouldn’t believe how many this bride-to-be has had!), and all of a sudden, TA-DAH! It miraculously works itself out and I realise I’ve stressed myself out for what? Absolutely nothing!

This journey of wedding planning has taught us many things about ourselves – our work styles, our personalities, our little idiosyncrasies. I’ve figured out a way to get the groom-to-be working; he’s figured out a way to remind me to do my tasks and when I need a break from it all. But what I’ve learnt the most is that in the midst of it all, God is the Master Wedding Planner.

In retrospect, I’ve hardly had to stress about a thing. I decided on my gown in a day, there was a bit of drama with my shoes but it wasn’t the end of the world, the bridesmaids’ dresses all came too easily, the groom-to-be’s suit was perhaps the easiest and quickest decision made, and then there were the flowers.

I already had a vague idea of what I wanted my bridal bouquet to be like, but the idea, which I (unfortunately) found on the website of a highly-sought-after florist, was going to cost me an arm and a leg, and possibly a kidney and liver too. I could justify forking out a tidy sum for the gown or the suit, but for flowers that would wilt and die in a day? It was no systems go.

Thanks to a friend whose cousin had a friend in the industry – Fleurlicious – who does absolutely gorgeous flowers, we were incredibly blessed by his generosity and graciously given a packaged deal for all the flowers that we needed, and it didn’t even cost us a finger. What I liked best was Justin’s service – his honesty and enthusiasm was enough to get me all excited about flowers even if it were through an email. You know how you just KNOW it when you’ve got a connection with someone? I had that vibe with Justin and his team.

Divine intervention? You bet. Isn’t it awesome when we have God as our Master Wedding Planner! So, ladies and gentlemen, I say this with much pleasure and glee:

Flowers? CHECK!

The Suit

May 4, 2009

Before I am accused of gender-biasedness, I thought I’d better post up something about THE SUIT, which to be honest does deserve special mention.

As usual it started off with the casual browsing – through the city, around Doncaster Westfield, and a few other random shops around, but it was at the David Jones suit department that we found his suit.

THAT place is no force to be reckoned with; if any guy were to whine about the lack of male clothing in stores, he obviously hasn’t been to David Jones. Just imagine this: rows and rows and many more rows of suit racks, sprawled across an entire floor of a building, purely dedicated to suits. There were suits in all shapes and sizes, from all designers between Armani and Zegna, branded or otherwise. THAT place, is suit heaven.

He tried on a few and we eventually settled on a Studio Italia one. The price was decent, minor alterations were needed and we both agreed he looked pretty dapper. We put in an order for that and left.

And that was when we wandered carelessly into Zegna thinking it was harmless since we got the suit already, but oh how wrong we were! You see, there’s Zegna, and there’s ZZegna, which is the younger, cooler, and oh-so-much-hipper (and much much more affordable) range. At the shop assistant’s insistence that Jon tried on a suit which she thought was perfect for him (although admittedly the material was beautiful), Jon reluctantly went into the change room to try it on (just to shut her up).

Minutes later he emerged, and That suit was perfect! It fit him to a T. The tailoring was exquisite, the material was beautiful…and best of all the price wasn’t Zegnaesque in any way and fit snugly within our budget.

The deal was sealed in a heartbeat and we left the places happy customers. We also managed to cancel the order for the previous one since it was in the same store which made us even happier customers.

And that’s the story of THE SUIT.


The Shoes

April 22, 2009

Honey, are you ready yet?

Honey, are you ready yet?

Now the shoes. Frankly, I had much more fun shopping for the shoes than the dress, simply because:

  • I love shoes
  • there are far more possibilities when it comes to shoes
  • splurging a little more on my wedding shoes seemed perfectly justifiable and I was one step closer to owning a pair of Jimmys, Manolos or Zanottis that I’ve always dreamed of tottering around in
  • it was rather dramatic (though one could argue that some excitement could be done without)

The Hunt

So the hunt began. I must’ve combed every designer boutique to find THE SHOES – Jimmy Choo, Manolo Blahnik, Giuseppe Zanotti, Dior, Valentino – every boutique along the Orchard Road walk-of-fame that existed, I’d explored.

But in the end, in very Susan-Boyle fashion, it was in a non-descript London-based online store that I found THE SHOES (that didn’t cost an arm and a leg and possibly a kidney). I’d actually seen them at the boutique where I had my dress made, but there were no sizes left. It was old stock, so old that there were none left in the rest of the world either. Thanks to Google, I managed to sniff out the LAST PAIR on, IN MY SIZE, and at HALF THE PRICE! SCORE! The credit card was whipped out in 3 seconds flat, but there was a catch: the site required a UK-based credit card.

The London Leg

Undeterred, I called up one of my girlfriends living in London and after a flurry of SMSes was pleasantly surprised when she not only offered to help me with the purchase, but out of generosity decided to gift them to me as a wedding present “if I didn’t mind”. Are you kidding me? I was thrilled to bits! There couldn’t have been a more apt present from the girlfriend who shares her enthusiasm for foot couture!

The Postman Screws Up

Just like all fairytales, something has to screw up, and in this case, it was the postman. Three weeks later, there is still no sign of the shoes, so my girlfriend S calls up the shop and discovers that the shoes were marked “Returned to Sender”. Worse still, the shop couldn’t find the pair of shoes in their warehouse, and since it was the last pair available, they could only offer me alternatives from their existing range of stock in the warehouse.

A little shell-shocked that something with such a remote chance of happening actually occurred, it took me a while to regain my composure. I felt guilty that S felt so bad about them because she knew how much I loved them and she wanted so much for me to have them too. I KNEW they were just shoes; I also KNEW that there are many other beautiful shoes around and something of such frivolity deserved little sympathy (even though the husband-to-be was incredibly sympathetic about the whole situation).

The Fairytale Ending

A week later, and after many emails to various shops including the designer, the shoes appear. The designer contacts me and informs me (to my utmost surprise and glee!) that she has a pair in my size. I am elated! Thrilled! Ecstatic! I do a little victory jiggle in my office chair. Finally, Cinderella finds her shoes.

Fast forward a couple more weeks, the shoes arrive in Singapore, lovingly hand-carried by another friend coming back from London. I am at the boutique having my first gown-fitting. And I am standing there in full glory of exquisite French lace and the finest duchess satin, in THE SHOES. It is the most indescribable feeling.

And they lived happily ever after.


the bride-to-be

The Dress

April 20, 2009

To Me, You Are Perfect

This is where it gets exciting, because at any wedding, everyone always wants to know about it – yes, THE DRESS. I’ve promised NO pictures but I thought it’s worth chronicling my own adventures looking for the dress and how I eventually found it (or it found me?). And yes, it was love at first sight.

I won’t deny it – the first thought that came to my mind after settling down from the dizzying post-proposal high was this: what would I wear? Like any other girl, finding the illusive PERFECT dream wedding dress was vying with others to be at the top of my priority list, and judging from the number of wedding dress nightmares I had at the start, I couldn’t convince myself that I thought of the dress as something “not-that-important, it’s just for that one day in my life” no matter how hard I tried.

They say that you’ll know when you find the perfect dress, but I didn’t think so. You see, many girls I know have dreamed of their wedding dresses before they could even walk; a lady I met before found her dream dress when she was 18 and when she got married at 24 she made a beeline for it. I, on the other hand, was clueless. Girly-girl as I may be, I had no inkling of what I wanted. I also learnt something about wedding dresses: your wedding dress is a very personal thing; someone else’s dress will never look as perfect as yours. It isn’t so much of a mine-is-nicer-than-yours catfight-jealousy-worthy type of mentality, but it will always remain as a fact that whatever dress you wear on your wedding day, it is perfect in your eyes.

After a few unsuccessful attempts at browsing the “wedding strip” up on Sydney Road and David Jones (it was so bad that not one of them caught my eye), and an effort that could rival finding a needle in a haystack, I redirected my desperate efforts to the boutiques in Singapore. One December morning, while I was early for my appointment with another boutique, I wandered mindlessly into the lovely, plush Renee L. boutique with my sister.

I browsed through the collection and nothing caught my eye at first, but Robin (from the shop) picked out a dress and convinced me to try it on. Hesitant but not wanting to douse any possibilities (remember: go in with an open mind!), I jumped into the changing room and before I knew it, there I was, standing in full glory of exquisite French lace and duchess satin, in the perfect gown – it was love at first sight. Every single detail on it was beautiful and perfect. It was, in short, very me. My sister – undoubtedly my most dependable and honest critic – voted in favour of it.

I took my mother to see the dress the next day, and even the hefty price tag didn’t stop her from falling in love with it too. Mom thought it was perfect, and that was enough for me (you know what they say – approval from the parental units means the world to a bride no matter how much they deny it). But the winning card was the fabulous service we got from the crew at Renee L. Ever so patient and warm, they make you feel incredibly pampered like a princess. I liked that I could trust them.

That’s the thing about shopping for your wedding dress: keep the affair small (remember: too many cooks spoil the broth!), and bring only those who will not bat an eyelid about being brutally honest with you. Being overseas and unable to see to every little detail, service and dependability was also an important factor for us. In the end, every other dress and boutique paled in comparison and it wasn’t a tough choice to make.

To cut the long story short, 24 hours was all it took to have the deal signed and sealed. And the nightmares have since ceased.

As for the shoes, they deserve another post on its own!

[written by the bride-to-be]