#RealWeddings: This Artist DIY-ed Her Bridal Shoes And Designed The Invitation For Her "No-Theme" Wedding
The first thing people are typically curious about when it comes to weddings is the theme. It's also the factor event planners and event stylists initially determine to narrow down and streamline possible executions for the celebration. Is it classic, rustic, beach, or garden? There are also those who go for art deco, vintage, and movie-inspired concepts, among other more specific ideas that speak about the couple's personality.
This wedding, however, wanted to be a bit different, choosing to forgo a particular theme and simply opting to have a burgundy color scheme tie the elements together instead. "Anything goes really, nothing too fancy, nothing too themed," bride Alexis Ventura-Dy quips. Despite the absence of the theme, this wedding still looked picture-perfect in every way with the couple's thoughtful selection of details, making the celebration not only visually appealing but heartwarming as well.
While the overarching theme is essentially defined to reflect what the bride and the groom loves as a couple, what spoke volumes about Alexis and husband Jonn during their big day were the personalized details: the vlog they did so their guests can get to know them a little bit better, the gifts for their bridesmaids and groomsmen which they worked on themselves, and the scratch cards which reveal their favorite bible verses and doubled as welcome cards and souvenirs.
It's always a given how hands-on brides-to-be are when it comes to wedding planning, but Alexis had her own ways of making sure this process was as enjoyable as possible—that is, by letting her creativity shine. As the woman behind modern calligraphy and design team Ink Scribbler and arts and crafts store The Craft Central, Alexis creates artisanal merchandise and wedding invitations for a living. So, she felt like designing her and Jonn's invitation was a no-brainer, and one of the most important projects she ever had to take on. Alexis was also keen on being a practical bride, so she sourced ways to get her dream designs for much affordable prices. She DIY-ed two pairs of shoes from Zalora and even personally shopped in Divisoria the lace that adorned her Vee Tan wedding gown.
Scroll down to see real bride Alexis' DIY projects:
About the couple
When and how did you and your husband meet?
"We met in 2011 in a bible study. I was invited by my boss, who happens to be Jonn’s sister. She also invited Jonn and that’s where we met. Together with two more friends, we ended up starting our own bible study group too. He would give me a ride home, and with our friends, we traveled and spent a lot of time together."
How long have you two been together?
"When we met, we were in different relationships, and even entered into new ones. But stars aligned in 2015 when we were both single. After several years of friendship, we got together. After a year and a few months, he proposed. And then we got married! So we’ve been together for three years and counting."
What are your current occupations?
"I am a calligrapher and entrepreneur. I design artisanal merchandise and wedding invitations under Ink Scribbler, and manage The Craft Central, an arts and crafts store. Jonn has a regional marketing role in P&G. Two months after the wedding, we relocated to Singapore for his career. Now, I am an expat’s wife who manages the team remotely and fly back to the Philippines every month."
What do you enjoy doing together? Hobbies, interests?
"We enjoy watching movies, trying new restaurants, travelling to new places. We’re also in business together, which we enjoy doing too. We supplied the men’s accessories and giveaways of our entourage—it was a lot of fun!"
Preparing for the wedding
What is your wedding's motif or theme, and why did you choose it?
"For the color, we chose burgundy; I love that it is striking, bold, and timeless. Our designs, it was mostly white flowers and leaves. Anything goes really, nothing too fancy, nothing too themed."
How long did you prepare for your wedding day?
"We had about a year of preparation. We just booked our major supplies a year before, then started adding the other suppliers along the way."
What were the challenges you encountered along the way?
"I really wanted a beautiful wedding, but also desired to glorify the Lord with how we spent our money. The wedding was a one-day event, and it was both a challenge and a pleasure to look for the suppliers who were both practical and promising.
"I also designed our invitations and other stationery. That was a big challenge because it was a lot of pressure. Having designed countless invitations, I still couldn’t wrap my head around what I wanted for my own! I kept procrastinating until the last minute, but it came together nicely. I also wanted to share more about God through our wedding, so we DIY-ed some welcome scratch cards for guests, revealing some of our favorite bible verses."
What was the best part in preparing for your wedding?
"Given that our friends and families have attended countless weddings, we wanted to make ours as personal as we can. We thought of singing or dancing or having other “pakulo,” but we ended up making a vlog. We wanted to share more of our story and our lives, especially to distant relatives and family friends who attended. Our faces filled the screen, and we talked to our audience casually, making it feel like we were having a conversation with each and everyone. We crowdsourced questions on Instagram and then took a video of ourselves one afternoon.
"Some of the questions we answered were where we met and when our first date was. We also included the video of our proposal, some clips from our travels and cameos from our parents. It was very DIY, we just used our phones and camera. I enjoyed learning a new program to edit the video, and I was laughing while adding effects and memes. It was a hit, and it fulfilled our purpose!"
What is your tip to brides-to-be when it comes to planning a wedding?
"A month or two before the wedding, it really helps to put things into perspective. For the things you truly like, just go for it. For the rest, just remember that it will be a beautiful day no matter what! Joy would be the best accessory!"
The Wedding Outfit
Tell us something about your beautiful form-fitting wedding gown.
"Vee Tan was my choice for my wedding gown, her style is fresh and the fit is impeccable. She’s relatively new to the design scene, so her rates are sensible. It is much more than you would get with gowns that have inflated price tags.
"For the design, we went with a sweetheart cut with a low and narrow plunging neckline. It had a spaghetti strap with a low bareback. The skirt was mermaid cut, hugging my hips to show off the curves while slowly opening up to a short train. I personally shopped for the lace I liked in a specialty store in Divisoria. I was particular with the design because I envisioned it to be small and dainty, with leaves and vines crawling on the dress. My gown had Swarovski crystals, beads and the laces tastefully set all over the dress. For the ceremony, I had a long detachable train with lace and beads.
"As the gift of my maid of honor (my sister), I also had another dress for the first dance. It was off-shoulder with puffy lace long sleeves, and an easy flow skirt."
You DIY-ed your shoes! Why did you decide to do so?
"Yes, and I made two pairs! The ones I could buy had to be pre-ordered, shipped from abroad, or at a price that I felt was too extravagant. And when I looked at the shoes I liked, I realized that I can do these myself! I ordered plain and reasonable shoes from Zalora, and started working on it. For the ceremony, I chose to add growing embellishments on the heels of my blue pumps. For the reception, I added some petals on made from scrap cloth I got from my wedding gown designer. They came out great! A lot of my friends told me to make more, and some of my engaged friends asked me to do their wedding shoes too!"
Tell us something about your hair and makeup looks, and accessories.
"I bought enamel flowers and leaves for my hair accessory. It was the same design I used to embellish my shoes, and also matched the lace I chose for my dress."
Her bridal shoes inspired by British designer wedding shoe brand Harriet Wilde | Left photo from @wedding.pages / right photo from @alexisventurady
What are the highlights of the program?
"We kicked off the program with the VLOG, which was a great hit! A lot of our guests say that it was their favorite part of the wedding. The speeches of our parents and maid of honor all stole the night, my friends would still mention the jokes until today. It was very memorable. But I think the happy wedding vibes started with our personal vows, which really set the tone for the day. Our vows were light and sincere, our friends and relatives were laughing and crying at the same time. A lot of our guests complimented our vows, saying it’s one of the best they’ve ever heard. Our wedding was not ‘perfect’, but we made it our own."
Number of guests: 450
Church/Ceremony venue: Church of the Holy Trinity, McKinley
Reception venue: Sofitel Manila Plaza
Date of wedding: January 13, 2019
Wedding coordinator: Teena Barretto Events
Photographer: Ian Santillan
Videographer: Treehouse Story
Invitations/Printers: Ink Scribbler / Amis Print
Designer of bridal gown: Vee Tan Studios
Designer of entourage gowns: Vanliu Couture
Florist: Notes and Flowers
Host: Our bridesmaid and groomsman, Arlene Amante and Reginald Tan
Entertainer: Prince Dundee (singer)
Priest: Pastor Aumar Aguilar
Giveaways: Ink Scribbler, Serious Gentlemen
Cake maker: Sugarbox Cakes
Hair and makeup artist: Mariah Santos
Bridal shoe designer: The bride
Wedding hashtag: #DYadVENTURAofalifetime
Photographs by Ian Santillan, coutesy of Alexis Ventura-Dy