Singaporebrides | Real Weddings
Never A Dull Moment
Ahot air balloon proposal? A life-sized table football game at the wedding? A bridal entourage in football jerseys and tennis dresses? Now this is not your average bridal couple. With Angela Tay, 31, Financial Communications and Gerrard Lim, 32, Banking, so adamant about not having a run-of-the-mill wedding, the memories of their special day on 21 January 2011 will leave a deep but happy mark in the minds of those who were there to share it with them.
How did the two of you meet?
Angela: We actually knew each other through Facebook, around Chinese New Year in 2008. Out of the blue, I had received a friend request from Gerrard. I saw that we had some mutual friends and thought that there was no harm knowing more friends, though I had people telling me to be careful about meeting people online. We exchanged messages on Facebook, then moved on to MSN, then went out on our first dinner date and clicked really well. We became a couple a few dates later.
You mentioned in the video that the proposal was amazing. Share it with us.
Angela: We wanted to go on a holiday. There wasn’t any particular location that I had wanted to go and he suggested letting him plan it so that it would be a total surprise for me. I thought then that it was a very fun idea to just take off somewhere without knowing where you’ll be going. So in January 2010, he told me to pack for a “not-cold” place and it was only when we got to the airport that I found out we were going to Cairns, Australia. It was a whirlwind 48 hours as we left Singapore on Friday evening and came back on Sunday night.
He told me he had booked a hot air balloon ride for Saturday morning but we had to get up really early (around 4 am) as the drive to the site where the balloon was to take off was quite a long one. As the balloon ascended and floated over Cairns, the sun started to rise and the sky brightened, which was really beautiful. That was when he hugged me, took out a most beautiful ring and asked me to marry him. I was speechless for quite a while and just felt so choked up with emotions. We were literally and figuratively on top of the world.
Apparently, Gerrard had already planned for this trip for quite a while, and our immediate family and closest friends all knew about it but they kept it so well under wraps. I was totally clueless about the plans.
Did you have a theme in mind when you started planning your wedding?
Angela: When Gerrard and I started planning our wedding with a year to go, we both knew we did not want a typical, forgettable wedding. We wanted a unique and fun wedding that would be memorable, not just for us but also for our families, friends and guests. We were very keen to avoid the kind of wedding where guests can predict what will be happening next in the banquet.
We also did not want to trouble our friends and family to help us with the execution of the wedding programme itself, and wanted everyone to just enjoy the day with us. Hence we decided to engage a wedding planner to help us to assist on the planning to transform our ideas and beliefs into the actual day programme and the evening wedding banquet.
So what actually did happen on the morning of the actual day?
Angela: In the morning, an open top bus was engaged to bring Gerrard and his entourage (a total of 14) to me and my entourage (a total of eight). We felt that it was quite special as we can have the whole group seated at the top deck when we moved around and it definitely added on to the celebratory mood.
Our separate dress codes were meant to be a secret. In the end, it was proven that both of us were quite telepathic as both of us avoided the usual boring suits and dresses and opted for sports attire. The guys were in red Liverpool FC jerseys (with “Gerrard” imprinted at the back) whilst the ladies were in tennis dresses with red striped socks to match my gowns.
For the guys’ gate-crashing games, I gave my eight girl-friends a few guidelines. Basically, I didn’t want to have the usual, clichéd gate-crashing games. I had wanted the girls to plan activities that would involve the girls as part of the game as well, instead of just the groom and guys getting sabotaged by the girls. So, we used the “home-ground” advantage: there was an open field near my home, so the girls planned a game of “table football” by tying the guys to bamboo poles and had a game of girls against guys. This was very suitable as Gerrard is a die-hard Liverpool fan and most of brothers also follow the Premier League closely.
I didn’t want my girl-friends to wear the usual girly dresses, so my wedding planner and I sourced for sporty-themed clothing. We managed to find the same tennis dresses for all eight of them in varying sizes, and also red-striped socks to match my gown.
Was the evening just as eventful?
Angela: After a few months of meetings, discussions and getting to know our wedding planner, we decided on the theme of “Hollywood Glam” for our evening banquet, which was to be held at Four Seasons Hotel.
We had a stage backdrop reminiscent of the Old Hollywood/Broadway bright lights, a red carpet, and red and white ostrich feathers and crystal centrepieces on each table, which we felt brought up the “glam” factor of the event. We also had our “A & G” monogram printed on our wedding invites, main stage backdrop, as well as on our final dessert dish.
For the first march-in, Gerrard was inspired by a scene in the Harry Potter films where the various schools marched into the school’s dining hall in fanciful colours. So, instead of having a typical string quartet or small band to perform throughout the dinner, we decided on a children’s choir. We invited our friend Charlotte, who has unbelievable vocals, to perform with the school choir for our official march-in. Choosing the song to walk in to took time as well, as we needed an appropriate song that was beautiful, suited Charlotte and also wasn’t difficult for the students to learn. In the end we chose Faye Wong’s 我愿意, which was a song we both liked a lot.
The second march-in was a song-and-dance with our bridal entourage, with me dancing into the banquet venue with my dad.
The champagne pouring ceremony is slightly different as well; we had all the 14 brothers each pop a bottle of pink champagne before Gerrard popped the main champagne. It was evident that the bridal party and relatives enjoyed themselves on the stage.
The night ended with a continuation of the open top bus tour for invited guests to move to Gallery Bar at St James for a private party of booze and fun. My dad also went there with some of his colleagues and he partied to 4am with us!!!
Whose idea was it to do a song and dance for the second walk-in at the wedding dinner?
Angela: We wanted to have a memorable second-march in and do something different. Gerrard was, again, inspired by the Glee TV series when we danced to “Marry You”. We told our entourage about the idea of them marching-in with us, and everyone was so game and excited about it. We rehearsed a few times as it was not easy to coordinate with so many people involved, and to make sure everyone was familiar with their steps. My dad was also very game and agreed to dance with me.
What did your family and friends say about your evening?
Angela: We think most people found it very memorable; with friends and family still talking about how fun, unusual and unforgettable it was even one year after the wedding. We are really glad that everyone enjoyed it as much as we did getting married and planning such a big celebration for everyone.
Were there any particular moments during your planning process or on your big day that were especially memorable to you?
Angela: I have to say I really enjoyed every part of the wedding process. There was not a single dull moment. I can’t really single out anything because everything was so special, from the overseas photo-shoot in Rome and Liverpool, to the video-shoot in Tokyo, to all the special projects with our brothers and sisters, our families who chipped in to help with different aspects of the wedding preparation. They had been so supportive and helpful, and having everyone we cared about and who cared about us to share this big celebration with us, every aspect of it was memorable. I’d also like to thank our late mothers, whom I think played huge roles in our lives when they lived, and even after they are gone. Their absence makes us treasure what we now have dearly, and in many ways, brought Gerrard and I closer together as a couple.
Watch the Pre-Wedding Video
Watch the Wedding Day Highlights
Her Gown: Amanda Lee Weddings
His Suit: Amanda Lee Weddings
The Venue: Four Seasons Hotel
The Wedding Planner: Sherwin Lee of DoWed
The Photographer: Brian Ho and Luvin Lim of thegaleria
The Cinematographer: Yang of Substance Films
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