This afternoon’s wedding marks the first big day that I’ve blogged that includes a Vera Wang gown and by gosh folks it really is Wangtastic. I mean seriously beautiful…all frothy tulle and fishtail and organza and sequins and rosettes. In short I’ve fallen head over heels for it and I’m certain that you’ll love it just as much as I do.
Rebecca married her boy Fang (totally awesome name by the way!) at Chateau Lagorce, Bordeaux. I mean if there was ever a backdrop for that fairytale of a frock then this beautiful venue has to be it! They gallivanted amongst the vineyards flanked by maids in coral and decadent croquembouches and sparkly Jimmy Choos.
I’ve died and gone to princess heaven.
Rebecca The Bride: I always dreamt of getting married in a Vera Wang gown. The ‘Gemma’ was the very first gown I tried and the moment I had it on, I knew then I had found the one (as cliche as it may sound!). However, I tried to act sensible so over the next couple of months, I went on to try other gowns from different designers, but somehow none of them felt right. My mind kept thinking about the Gemma! There was just something about the French tulle, organza, sequins and rosettes. I just couldn’t get my mind off it! So after all that, I made up my mind and went back to the very first gown I tried! I love the Gemma as it is a very soft mermaid cut with just the right amount of flash and volume at the bottom!
I wanted to let the dress do all the talking, so I kept my accessories to a bare minimum. I opted for a plain cream grosgrain sash, a plain veil, a pair of drop earrings and a simple diamond necklace. My wedding shoes were a pair of silver sparkly Jimmy Choos which were surprisingly comfortable despite being 4 inches high!
Fang got his suit in Paris from a French shop called Celio. I knew I wanted him to wear a light grey suit and by chance, there was a suit from the new collection which had the exact shade I had in mind and it fit him perfectly!
If someone told me that I would end up getting married in a beautiful chateau in France, I never would have believed them! We initially considered wedding venues in Spain and Italy (Florence in particular) as we loved the charm of both countries when we last visited them, but none really caught our attention. They were either too small or too extravagant. We wanted a venue which could not only host the ceremony and reception but to also have accommodation onsite for most of our guests as everyone would be flying in from all over the world.
After countless days scouring for venues, somehow, by a stroke of luck (and fate!), I stumbled upon the Chateau Lagorce wedding website and I knew then it was THE ONE! A castle, south of France, in a region famous for its fabulous wines.. PERFECT! It ticked all our boxes so we booked the place without physically being there to view it (a bit crazy I know!!) We made a trip there a month before our wedding and all our worries were cast aside as we were greeted by the most amazing sight.
It wasn’t too hard deciding on a colour scheme. I am such a girly girl and I love anything pink and floral but Fang didn’t want it to be too girly so we reached a middle ground – Coral peach! I dressed my bridesmaids in coral peach dresses and the groomsmen in matching coloured bow ties. My niece was the flower girl and my nephew was our ring bearer.
In terms of decor, I opted for the whole casual rustic look. As the chateau grounds were so beautiful, I didn’t want to overdo it with the decor as no one would have noticed it anyway with such an amazing backdrop. All decor were sourced from weekend markets, shops and eBay! I bought things like vintage birdcages, candle holders and decorative lights. The jars for the centre pieces were collected by family & friends and I spent many nights after work decorating the jars with ribbons, lace and burlap. My bouquet was made up of pink peonies, peach roses and white ranunculus. These were combined with hydrangeas, gypsophila and hyacinths to make the floral decorations on the tables.
My amazing wedding planner, Anna ordered the flowers for me from a local wholesaler and stored the flowers in the cold room until they were ready to be put into jars. My lovely bridesmaids and girlfriends were all up early on the day to help arrange the flowers and decorate the tables and the end result was so pretty!
Our ceremony was meant to be held outdoors with the lush greenery as the backdrop. But as luck would have had it, it was raining on the morning of the wedding so we decided to move everything indoors. Although I was a bit sad we couldn’t say our vows in the garden overlooking the lake, everything worked out well in the end. I walked in to ‘La vie en rose’, which Fang chose as he thought it was very befitting to the setting. We had two readings, one from Dr Seuss’ Oh the places you will go’ and the other titled ‘Yes I’ll marry you’, both rather light hearted and brought plenty of smiles throughout.
For Fang’s wedding gift, I surprised him by hiring a live painter to paint during our reception. Marta is one of a kind as she captures all the details of the night and paints it on the spot. Everyone was in awe as most had not seen such a thing at a wedding before. Fang loved it and we got a very beautiful painting of our wedding at the end of the night!
Instead of having table numbers, we named the tables after our favourite European cities we’ve visited. I used scrabble tiles to make the guests name cards, which although did take up a bit of time to make, was well worth it as our guests loved the little ‘souvenir’ they got to take home! We decided to pack snacks that reminded us of our childhood in Malaysia and this was given out as wedding favours. Our relatives helped source everything from Malaysia and it definitely brought back lots of childhood memories for our guests that night.
As we were in France, we wanted to serve wholesome locally sourced french food for the reception. We had a vegetable tartlet as a starter, porc mignon in cider with caramelised apples and potato gratin for mains and for dessert, profiteroles from the croquembouche (our wedding cake!). These were all complemented by wine.. LOTS OF WINE!!
We had an awesome band, Agence Mess who sang during champagne & canapés and also dinner. Our first dance was to Stevie Wonder’s ‘For Once In My Life’ and we were treated to an amazing display of fireworks and sparklers after that. We then had the DJ come on and he didn’t stop till the last person left the dance floor, in the wee hours of the morning!
Throughout our wedding celebrations, Emm and Clau our wonderful photographers, and Mickael our videographer captured all the emotions, mood, colours and background we wanted to a tee! These guys are so good at what they do that each time we look at our wedding photos and videos, it is like we have stepped back to into our wedding. Also without our wedding planner Anna, things would have been so much harder to organize!! I think what made our wedding so perfect for us was just how relaxed and casual everything was. We stayed at the chateau for 4 days and at the end of it, everyone said they didn’t want to leave!
Our advice for couples would be to make your wedding as personal as you can, as these bits really convey you as a couple. Also, if you can ask friends and family for support and help, it will be a big bonus. If you are having a destination wedding and don’t speak the language, please try to get a local wedding planner who does. This will save you from lots of headaches and tears! We DIY-ed everything – from programme books to stationery to wedding favours to signs. Start preparing early as those little jobs you think will take a few minutes will end up taking hours! I’d also say be prepared about how much emotion will hit you. Fang & I are both quite relaxed and so thought we’d be really chilled on the day but emotion does hit you in an overwhelming wave – but in a good way! And last but definitely not least, enjoy every minute of the big day as it is truly a wonderful day!