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#RealWeddings: This Couple Made Their Pet The "Dog Of Honor" In Their Tagaytay Wedding!

Pets are family—and for long-term couple Leslie and J, making their dog a part of their wedding was a no-brainer.

"I'm so lucky that my husband J loves my dog Amanda as much as I do," shared Leslie, the blushing bride, in an exclusive interview with Metro.Style. "She simply had to be with us on our special day!"


READ: #RealWeddings: This Artist DIY-ed Her Bridal Shoes And Designed The Invitation For Her "No-Theme" Wedding



Leslie, a flight attendant for Philippine Airlines, has had her chihuahua-poodle mix for 12 years. They practically grew up together! 

Through the decade, they've formed an inseparable bond, sharing priceless moments from long road trips and afternoon naps, to life's milestones and the days in between. More than a pet, Amanda is her constant companion. She is family—one of the best presents Leslie ever received. "She was a gift from my friend. Amanda was the runt of the litter, but she grew up to be a well-behaved, beautiful girl."


READ: #RealWeddings: This Couple Had A "Winter Wonderland" Wedding In New Jersey And A Spanish-Themed Party In Manila



Leslie and J were ecstatic to make Amanda their "dog of honor." She was part of the wedding entourage, and even got to walk down the aisle and witness her "parents" exchange "I dos" at the altar!

"Having her there with us made everything perfect," quipped Leslie. "I couldn't stop looking at her during the ceremony. She was seated on my grandmother’s lap, and was watching J and me the whole time."




Leslie and J officially tied the knot in a Tagaytay ceremony with 160 guests. "We both wanted an intimate wedding since we're both sort of shy," shared the couple. "We didn't want it to feel like a 'show'". Their modern rustic ceremony was attended by family, their closest friends, and of course, their pet dog Amanda.

Planning a destination wedding soon? Scroll down to score tips and inspiration from our real bride Leslie!


READ: #RealWeddings: This Couple Had A "Star Wars" Wedding Inside A Century-Old Mansion!


About the couple

Metro.Style: What are your current occupations?

Leslie Carlos-Estrada: "We both work for Philippine Airlines. I am a flight attendant, and J is a pilot." 


How did you and your husband meet?

"We met on a long layover in Kalibo while being on seperate flight crews. I was with my crew for dinner—and our head crew invited J over, since they are family friends. J and I were not introduced to each other, so he had to get my full name from the hotel receptionist! 

Here's an animated video of how we met—we showed it during our wedding."

James & Leslie from leslie carlos on Vimeo.


How long have you been together?

Four and a half years.


What do you enjoy doing together?

"We love to travel—luckily our jobs let us travel together a lot! We both enjoy good, clean fun: binge-watching Netflix over a bottle of Moscato, collecting crossword puzzles onboard our flights, trying every new restaurant in town, going on trivia nights with our friends, and taking Amanda on walks. We love animals!"


READ: #RealWeddings: This Modern Bride Wore A Pink Rosenthal Tee Gown To Her Bohol Wedding!


Preparing for the wedding

Why did you decide to get married in Batangas? 

"Our concern was to avoid the heat and smoke of Manila. We flirted with the idea of Baguio, but settled with Tagaytay. We were already familiar with Hillcreek Gardens as an ideal reception venue—I really wanted a garden reception! Caleruega Church is just nearby, but technically it's in Batangas. We both instantly fell in love—its size is perfect for an intimate wedding, and the garden surrounding it is so beautiful."


Leslie and J got wed in Caleruega Church, Batangas



Leslie and J held their reception at Hillcreek Gardens in Tagaytay


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Why did you choose a pink, blue, and brown color motif?

"J really wanted a brown suit and I ended up choosing a blush pink gown, so we decided to incorporate these colors in our wedding motif. The dusty blue was inspired by gorgeous online pegs of outdoor table settings. Our only rule was that the shades had to be muted."


Guests cheering for the newlywed couple! Can you spot Amanda?



How long did you prepare for your wedding day? 

"Exactly one year!"


What were the challenges you encountered along the way?

"Luck was on our side, as there were several wedding fairs scheduled right at the beginning of our search. Our schedules being highly irregular though, it took us a while to finish our church obligations (pre-cana, wedding banns, canonical interview, etc.)."


What was the best part in preparing for your wedding?

"I loved designing our wedding—from the outfits of our entourage to the styling of our church and reception venue."


What is your tip for future brides and grooms who want to have a destination wedding?

"Make a list of all the things you have to bring—and check it thrice! I made one, but I still forgot to bring Amanda’s collar & leash for the wedding."


READ: #RealWeddings: This Couple's Nature-Themed Wedding Was Held In An Actual Forest In Palawan



Date of wedding: March 26, 2019

Priest: Father Hizon

Wedding Coordinator: Dawn Escarte

Photographer: Nice Print Photography

Videographer: Nice Print Photography

Invitations: Print & Co

Bridal Gown Designer: Rosa Clara

Groom's Suit Designer: Beyond White

Designer of Entourage: Minette Santiago

Hair and Makeup: Mikka Marcaida for the bride and the mothers, and Mulongskie Montalban for the entourage.

Florist/ Event Stylist: Tita Sonya

Cake Designer: Three Bridges by Hillcreek

Caterer: Three Bridges by Hillcreek

Band and  DJ: Infinite Soul and DJ Chie

Giveaways: Personalized candy by Twisted Candy, photobooth magnets by Easypics, and succulents by Go Green Giveaways

Other interesting details: The stamps on our invitations are the actual immigration stamps from our previous vacations. We also had a trivia game instead of the usual singles game!


Did you like this article? Make sure to read our other #RealWeddings articles to score tips and tricks from real brides.


Photos courtesy of Leslie Carlos-Estrada via Nice Print Photography