When my sister, an island girl from the Philippines, got engaged to work colleague, a lovely man from Germany, we knew from the beginning that it was going to be a challenging but exciting time of wedding preparations. To simplify things, the couple decided on having two weddings – one in each other’s hometown. The first wedding was held in a hilltop castle in Germany called the Burg Herzberg, and the second in an island called The Pearl Farm, deep in the south of the Philippines.
My family, the bride’s side, operates a small arts and crafts store, which also dabbles in gift wrapping and floral arrangements. Hence, we were quite keen to put all our crafty wedding ideas to life! The island wedding, being the bride’s family’s responsibility, slowly morphed into a labor of love and DIY projects.
The bride had only one request for the wedding – that we build our ideas around pineapples to complement with the island theme. To start, the bride commissioned an artist from etsy to produce tropical invitations with pineapples and leaves as borders.
For the flowers, our staff from our store painstakingly spent the night before the wedding making fresh bouquets. The beautiful bouquets consisted of pink roses with baby pineapples as their centerpiece, and were held together by soft pink ribbons.
As a thank you, guests were handed custom-made coasters with the couple’s names and a drawing of, you guessed it, a pineapple!
It was indeed a DIY wedding of sorts given that we hired minimal professional help. Our loyal staff made beautiful corsages made of pink and white roses for the godmothers of the couple, as is custom in the Philippines. Simple and easy to make, the corsages made even the simplest of dresses look striking.
Of all the DIY pieces for the wedding, my favorite was the photobooth which we made two days before the wedding. Using white wooden planks, the groom put his carpenter skills to life and nailed these planks together to make a hanging wall against a coconut tree. I then made buntings with the names of the bride and groom using burlap and acrylic paint. To finish the look, we hung two lifebuoys and added two pink flamingos on the sides.
It wasn’t the easiest wedding to organise and execute since we mostly planned and prepared the wedding by ourselves yet somehow we enjoyed it, all the crafting and worrying together! The preparations became a true family affair – bringing everyone together as how weddings are supposed to do.
P.S. The wedding was perfect, perhaps except for the part where it rained. But as my mother said, rain at weddings is a blessing and the wedding was imperfectly perfect.