Designer Kate Torralba’s trademark handbags with her custom dresses.
Now, I was no bridezilla and friends could attest to that. In fact, I was kind of spacey and floaty about the whole thing. When asked for certain preferences when it came to bridal fashion, flowers, or fabrics, I left a big part of the decision-making process to whomever was the expert. I had my basic ‘requirements’ (“I slouch so I would like for the straps to cross at the back so they don’t fall off, and I also have a paunch.”) and palette (“The colors of the Diane Von Furstenberg romper I bought with my first copy editor paycheck.”), and practically gave the suppliers free reign to do whatever they did best.
And it was so worth it; I was blown away by the result. You definitely get what you pay for and if you trust people to do their thing, you could really end up with something unbelievably good, beautiful, and lovely. If you’re planning your own wedding, this is a good time to pause and ponder priorities. What aspects of the big day are important to you and your partner? For Alvs and myself, we skipped the videographer altogether (I don’t really like all those hot, bright lights blocking the ceremony in sight) and alloted our budget on photography, hiring the best wedding photographer we know, Pat Dy.

Good photography: can’t be beat.

So again, the best way to talk about my wedding suppliers is through photos and anecdotes. Starting with…


None other than Kate Torralba, who I met way back in Seventeen. Those early days were just fun and promising, and it was nice getting to know certain people during that time. While many people would assume that having been a beauty editor meant instant access to a busload of designers, that is actually only the case if you’re a fashion editor. There is a difference. The beauty side of the magazine may be glamorous yet oftentimes, it’s more nerdy and science-related than most people think. We get to know clothes by necessity, when we have to pull items from shops and use them for shoots. Occasionally, we contact designers for custom pieces, but this is rare in the world of beauty editorials which feature closeup pictures of models’ faces.

Anyway, the point of all the above is, I only know and have worked with a few fashion designers. Less than five, actually. All except three of the custom pieces I own are made by Kate. So it was very easy to decide to go with her for my wedding gown.

Absolutely LOVE my dress!


Our wedding coordinator, Bong Abela, also happened to be an event stylist and florist. And again, I’m not particular about flowers and I just wanted them to basically follow the color scheme and essentially not be ugly. Plus, we were on a budget. Fortunately, the fabrics from the motif were already very busy and flowery, that we got away with using plenty of foilage and greens. Honestly, I don’t even remember what the flower arrangement looked like at the church. And by reception, it was already dark so I didn’t even notice. Again, priorities.


The first makeup artist I ever met when I started working almost 10 years ago in Seventeen was Peddy Acebo. At the time, I knew NOTHING about makeup and he basically let me go through his makeup box, showing me a bottle of BeneTint in the process. Over the years, we would go on out-of-town shoots and the staff simply loved booking Peddy because of his great work ethic, and of course, talent for beautifying. I loved how, on the day of the wedding, he exclaimed, “You’re the only bride who asked for blue [eyeshadow]!”

Peddy also brought along hairstylist Bong Vicentico, who did a fab job with my purposely-tousled updo. You won’t have to worry about hair styling products if you get a supplier who is experienced in the field of magazine editorials and advertising; or even just someone who has done numerous bridal parties to know what works for each hair type, who could also recommend a good shampoo and conditioner for you.

Flawless, thanks to Peddy and Bong!


As some of you may already know, we decided three months before the wedding to move it out of town, to the lovely city of Cebu, and have a beach reception. My husband is great with logistics and details, and I believe I’m good with big-picture stuff, so it worked out. Of course we had our share of fighting and arguing (mostly him complaining about how I was so up in the air about the big event), but we did good. And I also got plenty of help with the travel planning and family coordination thanks to my cousin, Jacque, who’s more like a sister.

Be Resorts (formerly Microtel Inn & Suites) in Mactan Island, Cebu.

The beautiful Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral


I’m still good friends with my only ex, Ruben Flores, (his family owns The Chocolate Kiss Cafeβ€”a good reason to never burn bridges!) whose wife, Trina Valenzuela, makes the best wedding invites, in my very biased opinion. No, seriously, her work is absolutely beautiful, thorough, and unique. From the custom artwork to the paper quality, down to the handling and delivery, everything is just so exquisitely made (she delivers the invites in this neat white box tied with a chocolate brown bow, tagged with the logo). To see is to believe. Drop by to see more of her excellent work.

If you like good-quality paper and stationery, Trina Valenzuela of
village pro’jekt designs and concepts
is your girl.

Okay, I’m sure I’m forgetting other suppliers, but this is enough wedding talk for now. If you would like contact details of all those mentioned above, just leave a comment and I’ll answer your questions πŸ™‚

DVF Romper photo courtesy of All other photographs except for the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral (which I took) are by Pat Dy and team.