- Posted on Tuesday, 13 December 2016
Long distance and the trials of having to undergo brain surgery were no match for these two “robot and unicorn” lovebirds who tied the knot in a quirky wedding at Lepark - a rooftop bar at People’s Park Complex, captured by Samuel Goh Photography. Rich autumn-inspired jewel tones, a giant unicorn float, and a sumptuous bridal party breakfast (in lieu of a gatecrash) made their nuptials look beautiful but even more importantly, allowed the bride and groom to truly spend time with their loved ones. Wedding goals, right?
How did you meet?
“We met in church as teens (I was 12, he was 16) and grew up together since.
Gabriel and I are extremely different. Family and friends who’ve grown up with us would probably describe Gabriel as serious, rational, logical…aka ‘left-brained’ (but with a big heart!) Whereas I am extroverted, dreamy and…well, not so serious. Between us we used to joke that Gabriel was like a robot because of his analytical nature, while I love unicorns, because who doesn’t! Despite our differences, it was our common belief in Christianity and similar values in life that drew us together.
When we first got engaged, we decided that we didn’t want the wedding just to be all about us. We wanted to use it as an opportunity to thank our friends and family for their love and support all these years, and also to share our faith in Jesus. The latter was especially important to us because we are thankful to God for bringing us together, sustaining our relationship and finally allowing us to get married. It was evident that God’s hand was in our relationship right from the beginning, keeping us together through a four year long distance relationship (I had gone off to the UK for university) and twice when Gabriel was ill and had to go through brain surgery. These two things shaped how we planned the wedding, and that made the long-awaited day even more special for us.” ~ Clara
What was your theme and colour palette?
“We both love nature and the outdoors, so I drew inspiration from rustic, dark, botanical mood boards to incorporate autumn / fall elements (since our wedding was in September) and colours (gold, maroon, burgundy, blush, navy and lots of greens) into the overall theme, while still keeping it fun and quirky (hence the giant paper flowers in those colours). My nine bridesmaids all picked out their own maroon and burgundy dresses, and the groomsmen wore maroon ties handmade by one of our friends. But of course, there was no need to follow everything to the tee, so we included anything we fancied…like a unicorn Ang Pow box, because why not?!
We wanted our guests to feel as comfortable as possible (as it was the first time stepping into church for some of them!), hence we decided to have a breakfast bar with coffee cart in the morning where people could come earlier, mingle, catch up with old friends and make new ones.
That was also another reason why we decided to hold a small party the next day at Lepark for about 100 of our closest friends. We wanted to be able to spend time chatting and hanging out with them. It was fuss free (not much styling done as the place itself was already so unique!), the bar food and drinks were great and our friends planned some pretty awesome games. One of the best surprises of the night was when our friend surprised me with a giant unicorn float! Of course, that made for a pretty good photograph prop.” ~ Clara
How did you decorate your venues? Did you undertake any DIY projects?
“I’d always wanted to try out designing my own wedding card and guest cards, so I signed up for a 3 day Adobe Photoshop class to learn some basic editing skills. Gabriel, knowing how much I enjoyed it, gifted me with a drawing tablet which I used to eventually design the card (with lots of inspiration from Pinterest and other amazing artists out there)! Of course, we were more than happy to save some money with this DIY and use it to buy more/tastier food for our guests! Knowing that we were expecting many guests, we decided to come up with our own ‘wed-libs’ for guests to fill out at their convenience. We had loads of fun reading all the cards after the wedding, and will be compiling it into a book as a keepsake!
The wedding felt very personal to us because during the planning process, many of our friends reached out and offered their help in various aspects of the wedding, such as baking all the delicious treats at our breakfast bar and preparing the mocktail counter during our lunch receptions. In fact, some of the “vendors” were actually friends we grew up together with – and that made the whole process extra special and enjoyable.” ~ Clara
Do you have any other stories you’d like to share with us?
“In order not to have my bridesmaids stress about planning games for the gate crash or go through the rush of washing up and getting ready later, we decided to opt for a wedding breakfast (rather than a gate crash) because it would allow us to spend some time with our bridal party before the solemnization later that afternoon. Besides filling everyone’s tummies, the breakfast also allowed us to give out some wedding gifts we had prepared for each of them as our way of thanking them for their friendship. Furthermore, the breakfast was held at my grandma’s house, where I spent most of my childhood. Having Sam there to photograph everyone having breakfast assured me that I will be able to translate memories of that place to paper and keep them forever.
I was blown away by the amount of effort that my bridesmaids put into planning the breakfast for us. They stayed up all night to make sandwiches and one of them even borrowed her family’s vintage tea party china and hand packed every piece and transported them to my house in the wee hours of the morning. One thing that made Gabriel and I feel so blessed was to see close to twenty of our closest friends from different stages of our lives gather and get to know each other.” ~ Gabriel and Clara
Any tips or wedding advice for other brides and grooms to-be?
“A wedding doesn’t have to be expensive or big to be memorable. Don’t be afraid to explore unconventional (and affordable!) alternatives (e.g. locations, gathering styles, attire) that will allow you and your guests to be able to feel at ease and genuinely enjoy time spent together. After all, what’s most important to a guest is not the aesthetics of the place, but the reverence paid to the wedding and quality time spent with the bride and groom. So remember to fill them with love, light and lots of laughter!” ~ Clara
What do you think makes a strong marriage?
“Enjoy the planning process, and use that time to intentionally learn more about each other. The wedding is not an end in itself, but a means to a lifetime together, with many bigger, better adventures to come.” ~ Clara
Congratulations on your marriage, Gabriel and Clara! May it be every bit as beautiful as your wedding!
Number of Guests: 650 (church) and 100 (Lepark)
Venues: Zion Bishan Presbyterian Church and Lepark
Photography: Samuel Goh Photography
Wedding Dresses: Bespoke from Tiara Bridal (church)
Groom’s Outfits: The Tie Bar (bow tie)
Jewellery: TheRedMagnolia (church) and bespoke rings from Les Precieux
Hair and Makeup: Tang Yong
Flowers: Floraporn (bride and groom’s friend)
Stationery/Paper Goods: DIY (with inspiration from Pinterest)
Catering (church): Chilli Api, Churros Factory, Olla Specialty Coffee, Alfero Gelato and breakfast bar and drinks corner by friends