as posted at weddings at work community board (without the pictures).
a blessed day to all. this will be an extremely long read as all suppliers rating are. hopefully, this would help out all engaged couples out there… while entertaining those who are yet to be engaged or those who are married already.
date: january 20, 2007
ceremony time: 6:30 am
ceremony/reception venue: bella vista, tagaytay
VENUE: bella vista
CONTACT PERSON: deedee (mom) & sandee (daughter)
WHAT WE WERE LOOKING FOR: a garden with a view of taal
FIRST IMPRESSION: it felt like home.
from left to right: 1) ceremony at the terrace 2) post-reception shot (photos by fol rana jr)
HOW AND WHY WE CHOSE THEM: tagaytay was our venue of choice because of its cool, fresh air and its fantastic view. knowing that the venue is of prime importance, we devoted 2 sundays for venue-hunting. bella vista was the 11th of 12 venues we visited. it was drizzling and windy the day we visited but that did not hinder us from appreciating what we saw: the garden was very green, the flowers were full of life and the view was amazing. to cap it all off, the owner, deedee, made us feel like family. later on we will realize that the siytangco’s are naturally warm persons which explains why bella vista exudes such a homey feeling… perfect for our american backyard, spring wedding theme.
HOW THEY DELIVERED: our first impression really didn’t change… bella vista really felt like home. we were welcome anytime during the preps (we visited the venue 4 different times prior to the weekend of the wedding), they made us use their very own house furniture for the ceremony and even for our couch at the reception. the siytangco’s were present to attend to our every need… and even the needs of others. backyard wedding talaga.
ang maganda sa bella vista ay hindi sya just one huge area and that’s it. it had 3 sections to offer: the lower garden, the main garden and the terrace. they were linked yet somehow separated from one another. maganda kasi you can use the lower garden for cocktail, welcome station (which we did). the main garden for reception (which we did). the terrace for ceremony (which we also did). there are other options which bella vista uniquely offers compared to other venues.
SIDE KWENTO: during the vows, where tears started to flow… our matron-of-honor signalled to our “coordinator” friend for tissue paper. kaso walang tissue ang friend namin… when she was about to go down to get some, william, deedee’s son, just went out of his room kaya sa kanya na lang humingi ng tissue friend namin. william went back to his room kaso ala din pala. he then rushed downstairs to get one from his car then rushed back upstairs para ibigay sa friend namin. noong na-kwen2 to sa amin ng friend namin, it just cemented the fact that the siytangco’s are just very, very accomodating people.
WORDS TO DESCRIBE THE PERSON: warm, hospitable
WORDS TO DESCRIBE THE PRODUCT: homey, intimate
WHAT OTHERS SAID:
“bro, ang ganda ng place…” – guest
“ang ganda naman dito… pano nyo to na-discover?” – entourage member
RECOMMENDED FOR: couples who want a non-commercial, intimate, garden venue with a view of taal
VIDEOGRAPHER: bob nicolas (www.bobnicolas.com)
CONTACT PERSON: bob & let nicolas
WHAT WE WERE LOOKING FOR: initially, we weren’t looking for one
FIRST IMPRESSION: fresh, different, heartfelt videos
HOW AND WHY WE CHOSE HIM: for economical reasons, we initially wanted a packaged photography & videography service… that is until we got hold of a bob nicolas’ wedding video sampler. what we saw were videos way beyond the usual. we then checked other videographers and, with the exception of quite a few (1 or 2), most were… ordinary. the few who were exceptional were pricey… except bob, whose price we found reasonable. add to his top-notch skills his youth and humble heart and we had a keeper.
HOW HE DELIVERED: bob was the 2nd supplier to arrive during preps. he and his team were very early. even while setting up the lights and the pc for onsite editing, shoot naman agad sila… and i was more than happy to see that they’re now using a glidecam, a camera attachment for those smooth, gliding camera shots.
with 1 camera dedicated to selle and one “roving” camera, we were quite sure that most, if not all, the significant (and even trivial. hehe) events were captured. kahit nga sa post-ceremony pictorials namin meron din kaming video shots, eh.
since we really wanted a video output immediately, we asked for an onsite video. from the end of the ceremony to the actual time of showing the onsite video, it was just around 1.5 hours. but even with only such a very short amount of time to edit, bob still pulled off a stunning onsite video. at the end of the video, we could just hear the collective ooohs and aaaahs of appreciation. the angles, the cuts and the whole storyline blended perfectly with the music creating bob’s signature cinematic video. ang tindi.
SIDE KWENTO: for couples, the beauty of having an onsite avp is that they’ll immediately have a video showcasing the highlights of their wedding. instant. for the videographers, it is quite stressful because they have to edit quickly in such a short amount of time but if they do a successful job, it’s like free marketing for them. wanna know how good bob’s onsite was for us? a week or so after our wedding, a friend of mine, whose a guest in our wedding, booked bob’s services. and i didn’t even know that she was engaged already so i had no chance to promote bob to her. galing, no?
bob at the background with his panasonic dvx cam. (photo by fol rana jr)
WORDS TO DESCRIBE THE PERSON: humble, courteous
WORDS TO DESCRIBE THE PRODUCT: dramatic, captivating, cinematic
WHAT OTHERS SAID:
“ang gandaaaa…” – guest (after viewing the onsite)
“ang galing ng video… parang matagal na nangyari, ah.” – entourage member
RECOMMENDED FOR: couples who are looking for a videographer whose a fresh blood, offers cinematic (film-look) and engaging videos at a very reasonable price
PHOTOGRAPHER: fol rana jr (www.folrana.com)
CONTACT PERSON: fol jr & leslie rana
WHAT WE WERE LOOKING FOR: an excellent photographer with exceptional layouting skills
FIRST IMPRESSION: he must be expensive
HOW AND WHY WE CHOSE HIM: we first bumped into fol rana jr thru a prominent videographer’s website. fol was one of just three photographers linked to the said site. knowing that this particular videographer’s services were way beyond our budget, we assumed that fol’s would be also hence, we didn’t even bother to click on the link to visit his website. fast forward a few weeks and we still have no photographer.
we were very finicky in choosing a photographer. thru extensive research, we found out that shot-making alone, there were a number of excellent photographers. however, when it comes to layouting, very, very few stood out. not wanting to accept that what we have seen is the best there is, we searched thru each of our wedding supplier directories and emailed each one whose works we have yet to see… fol rana jr included.
fol replied to our inquiry. we finally visited his site and were blown away by his shot-making, his layouting and his artbook. but we don’t rely on skills alone, personality matters also. therefore, we arranged a meeting. met him at his home. smiled and laughed throughout the meeting.
smiled because we were very much pleased with his actual works.
laughed because he was such a funny guy. booked him on-the-spot.
HOW HE DELIVERED: going into the wedding, we already knew that our pictures would be great because of fol’s previous works… our prenups included. mga friends nga namin alam na pangalan ni fol kasi they kept asking kung cno photographer namin when they saw our prenup shots. gandang-ganda kasi sila… at syempre, kami. alam din namin na hindi kami maiilang sa kanila based din sa prenup experience namin. sobra naman kasi nila kukulit at masaya kasama. hehe.
3:30 am ang call time nila. yes, 3:30 in the morning. ganun talaga since we have an early morning wedding. hehe. and no complaints from them. dumating sila as scheduled at kahit malayo ang ni-byahe nila… wala ng rest-rest at diretso trabaho agad. very professional talaga. (side note: actually, akala ni fol praning lang ako noong cnabi ko na 3:30 am yung call time nila. they had a previous client kasi na madaling araw din daw ang call time nila pero 10 am pa pala ang ceremony. hehe. pero noong nakita ni fol ang aming invite/program, eh talagang 3:30 dapat kasi nga 6:30 am ang kasal namin. )
at very makulit din. hehe. at the tail-end of the bridal preps, kwen2 ni selle (yah, i was at the venue already) na wala daw sila ginawa kung d tawanan ng tawanan dahil sa kakulitan nina fol. at sabi nga ni selle, it really helped kasi it really removes stress… plus it results in great pictures.
the prenup artbook, the prenup moving pictures and the onsite moving pictures… all were excellent… and different. well, alam naman natin na iba talaga album ni fol, the artbook… the true coffeetable album. then his moving pictures are a notch above the usual slideshows… the guests (at syempre kami) were just at awe at the pictures fol shot. galing talaga!
prenup photo at tagaytay
bride portraiture during preps
couple portraiture after ceremony (more photos here)
SIDE KWENTO: since madaling araw pa lang eh nagtra-trabaho na sila fol at nag-byahe pa sila, ilang beses sila inalok mag-kape muna at magpahinga pero they kept refusing… kasi they might miss some shots. also, when all the guests have left already, that’s the only time they ate… at kung d pa namin cguro sila inaya baka hindi din sila kumain. very true to his blog entry which states:
“I always believe, that “we might as well miss the meal rather than miss a shot”. Feeding us is the least of your concerns.”
pero pinakain pa din namin sila. sa galing, sipag, kulit at bait nila… they deserved to be fed.
BONUS SIDE KWENTO: fol has had 2 new clients partly because of us. one is a guest of ours… the other, is just a fellow passenger when we went to davao for our honeymoon (see fol’s blog entry)
WORDS TO DESCRIBE THE PERSON: jolly, professional
WORDS TO DESCRIBE THE PRODUCT: astonishing, unique, beyond words
WHAT OTHERS SAID:
“kakaiba yung guestbook… hindi pang-karaniwan…” – entourage member
“gusto ko si fol…” – guest
RECOMMENDED FOR: couples who are looking for a passionate photographer who will surely make one at ease, will produce numerous captivating, postcard-worthy shots and an album like no other
COUTURIER: tito franco
CONTACT PERSON: tito franco
WHAT WE WERE LOOKING FOR: a designer who can deliver selle’s desired gown at a budget-friendly price
FIRST IMPRESSION: an experienced designer who knows his craft
HOW AND WHY WE CHOSE HIM: since we already have a few designs wherein selle’s gown will be based at, we were just looking for a designer who can execute our desired design. our friend suggested her designer and we basically knew how much she charges. relatively cheap, actually. then selle’s sister recommended a designer also whose shop is near selle’s place. that’s tito franco. since malapit lang kina selle, pinuntahan namin to check kung magkano aabutin kung kay tito papagawa. we talked for a while at nalaman namin na almost same lang price nya dun sa designer ng isa pa naming friend. eh, since tested na din kasi si tito by a number of friends and/or relatives at malapit nga sa kanila, we decided kay tito na lang.
HOW HE DELIVERED: tito was nice at the start. problems arised as the wedding approached. this was probably the main source of stress during our wedding preps. unang-una, ang hirap nya ma-reach. sya nag-di-dictate ng schedule and not the client. eh, ang hirap nun lalo na for our entourage members kasi ang layo ng shop nya. tapos during fittings, once lang sya andun. first fitting… wala sya. last fitting… wala din sya. in effect, mga assistants lang nya talaga ang gumawa at nag-assist most of the time. also, yung gowns ng mothers namin eh supposedly magkaiba. clear naman yun during our numerous meetings. eh, kaso parehas pa din lumabas. sabi nga ni selle, “he never seemed to care about sa request ko abt that.” then he promised that 2 weeks before the wedding yung last fitting. d yun natupad. 2 days before the wedding yung last fitting. take note that nagpa-sukat si selle 5 months before our wedding. last words from my wife, selle: “hay… pangit na experience… buti ok pa din gown ko… ako din naman nagdictate ng adjustments nun at la sya part.”
from left to right: 1 & 2) inspiration for selle’s gown 3) selle’s gown (photo by venancio lacap jr)
SIDE KWENTO: we were supposed to get an assistant from him to assist during preps (at para na din may fitting form yung gown). kaso ang hirap nya talaga kausap at nagalit pa kay selle 2 days before the wedding kasi nga ang gulo nya kausap. in the end d na namin in-avail yung assistant nor yung fitting form. d na rin naman pala kelangan kasi magaling photographer namin at maganda shots ng gown even without the fitting form. ok na din kasi we saved money na din. hehe.
WORDS TO DESCRIBE THE PERSON: soft-spoken, hard to reach
WORDS TO DESCRIBE THE PRODUCT: beautiful… but the credit should go to selle kasi kami naman pumili ng design from a magazine tapos ginaya lang nya. tapos during fitting, si selle din nag-dictate ng mga adjustments to be made sa gown, not tito. kung d nag-react si selle during fittings baka hindi naging maganda kinalabasan ng gown.
RECOMMENDED FOR: no one… based solely on our experience.
ADVICE: voice out your opinions especially during fitting. do not hesitate kasi your paying them to make your gown the way you want it. take note of comfort also kaso you’ll be wearing it on your wedding day. kung d nagsalita si selle during fittings… ewan ko na lang kung ano nangyari sa gown nya.
[groom speaks] talking about our suppliers part 2
[groom speaks] talking about our suppliers part 3