I've only attended two weddings of my high school friends. The first being around five years ago in Alabang and this second one further down south and up the hill in chilly Tagaytay, and one ofthe most beautiful weddings I have ever seen. Although I'm not the bridal makeup artist here, this is a wedding definitely worth blogging.
The bride is Esel, and she married Gelo, her love of seven years.
I've known Esel for more than a decade already, since we were awkward teenagers, because we went in the same school together in high school. I could say that she was one of the girls that I looked up to, those perfect girls in high school that I admit secretly envied. She had it all -beauty, brains, poise, talent, success with being team captain, cheerleader, honor student, and student leader at that. She's also the one I have kept in contact with the longest, not only because I work with her but also she's the one who keeps the batch together organizing reunions or occasional dinners/meetups.
Knowing her OC-ness and her being a perfectionist, I knew that she's the bride who'll be super hands-on with her wedding, making sure that every detail and stitch falls in the perfect place. Esel and Gelo chose to have a destination wedding, inviting only close friends and family. They chose a perfect place to get married - Hacienda Isabella, a beautiful garden setting with an old-world Filipino charm. If you've been following my blog, it's the same place where my Jho got married last year. Since I've been to the place already, I absolutely had no excuse to get lost in transition right? Besides, there were numbers listed in the couple's e-vite of who to call should anyone get lost or need directions.
Esel also delegated me to be supplier that day. I was assigned to be a makeup artist to her mom and three ninangs, and I couldn't be happier. I'm already honored to be invited but it's even more of an honor to be part of her wedding supplier list. I wouldn't mind getting my hands in primers and lipsticks and carrying my equipment then switcharoo to a cocktail dress. As I remember, a year ago, Esel drove all the way from QC to Daang Hari, Las Piñas to be there on our wedding braving January traffic. If she asked me to pick flowers for additional sprigs on her bouquet I would.
Esel was a picture of a beautiful blooming bride - everything was perfect. She wore a beautiful Monique Lhullier gown. Tita Roselyn, one of the ninangs, told me the story of her gown. Esel was gown-hunting in New York. She walked in Saks Fifth Avenue and found it - it was in the designshe wanted and it was her size, as if fate made her see the gown for herself.
I've never seen Esel so happy, radiant, and nervous at the same time.
The party continues at Hacienda Isabella.
As the couple did they post-nuptial shots, the guests enjoyed cheese and cocktails (Wiiii!!!! Food) and the place's old rustic charm. And although I played supplier that day, no way will I look like a train wreck when it's guest mode. I followed the wedding dress code of cocktail dress/long flowy gowns in pastels or neutral colors. May isang pasaway lang dyan who didn't follow the traditional Barong Tagalog code.
The look I pegged for me that day was Angelina Jolie meets Victoria's Secret - that explains the big wavy hair and smoky eyes.
I love, love, love, love this dress. I already wore it once and I'll wear this once more. It's such a pretty, pretty, and comfy dress that hugs me well. This dress will have a sister pretty soon, and I have my alkansya ready for that.
Dress: Pia Gladys Perey
Hair: Lorybelle Barretto
Makeup: Me! I airbrushed myself again
Bag: GWP from Body Shop
Belle did an amazing job with my hair, despite the fact that she had like twenty minutes to do my hair. Should I red-carpet this look? Why not?
Okay, OOTD commercial over. Back to the wedding.
I made sure that I had a picture with the bride as soon as they arrived from the photos before the rest of the world does. :) I am so dark compared to her. And shorter, because she's in heels and I'm in flats because it's a garden reception.
I'm glad my outfit had a drapey front detail because I must have enjoyed the food that day that I needed something to hide me. The reception program wasn't the usual formula. In true Esel style, it was very entertaining, with presentations, both in video form and live presentations.
Gelo's friends from Duke University surprised the couple with a dance number and invited them to join too. It was really sweet of these guys to take time off and travel all the way to the Philippines to witness this special event.
More video presentations were shown - song-and-dance numbers edited in true MTV style from loved ones abroad, an AVP made by Esel's bridesmaids (who are our classmates from high school, which I have to thank the high heavens for not including embarrassing awkward shots of our teenage selves, 90s fashion and all), a song number from Gelo's siblings, an original song written by Gelo's dad, that he sang with his mom and a modified toast by the best men and maid and matron of honor done in The Buzz-style talk show form.
The couple's first dance as husband and wife was something that I have seen for the first time in my life. It was beautifully rehearsed and choreographed. It was only that night that I've seen a couple's first dance polished to pointed toes, clean lines, backbends, headthrows, and spinning/flying moves.
For giveaways, the couple chose a very practical choice: food! A slice of yummy chocolate cake enclosed in a pretty box prepared by the members of the entourage. You know how I found out it was chocolate cake? I stuck my finger inside and got frosting on my index finger. Then, I read the tag:
The tag read: "All you need is love but a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt". Ayun naman pala, magbasa kasi.
To end the night, the couple took inspiration from the movie Tangled and along with the other guests lit sky lanterns and released them to the night sky.
Rapunzel was right. They do look like stars.
Thank you so much, Esel and Gelo for choosing us to be present to witness your very beautiful wedding. The drive to Tagaytay and back was definitely worth it. Lots of love and happiness to both of you!
*pictures taken from personal cameras
*Esel's makeup by Kris Bacani. Esel's hair by Dimple Callada