Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Here's a pleasant blast from the past (well, a not quite-so-distant past, he he!). Swiped these photos from Bryan Yap's Wordpress (see the rest of his amazing photos here). You have to give it to him for coming out with these super wonderful pictures. I totally loved the patina - I always love anything with a vintage feel to it. Great composition and the colors are outstanding. It reminds me so much of what Albert Camus said,"Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower." All the best to you, sir Bryan! Hope to work with you again soon! :-)


Email: yaparazzi@gmail.com
Landline: +632 9404765
Mobile : +63919 8043777

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Photo by D. Gozum, 2007
Taken at the
National Orchid Garden of Singapore

Despite the fact that Vatel Manila uses a lot of Cymbidium, Mokara and Dendrobium orchids in our arrangements, one specie of orchids remain to be our favorite: the Phalaenopsis.

My Mom was so fond of orchids and I remember, as a kid, how she tended to her Cattleyas & Vandas and how, when they are in bloom, she reveled in these amazing orchids' beauty. We even used to sell per Cattleya flower at P50.00 (now it's P300-400 per). That was way back in the late 1990s. We were in Bukidnon then where I spent most of my summers, and every house in that area had tons of flowering orchid plants in their front yard.

How I came to love Phalaenopsis is now lost to me. Suffice to say that whenever I get hospitalized (which, thank God, is not often), friends would send me potted white Phalaenopsis. Very sweet of them! :-) If you think florists don't like receiving flowers, you're wrong!

For bridal bouquets, Phalaenopsis can be used alone or in conjunction with certain flowers. In Manila, the availability is pretty much all year-round provided you order at least a month ahead. They come in white and pink, although hybrids abound abroad.

These orchids are perfect for cascading arrangements since the stems are quite long, or twisted into a round bouquet with fillers of grasses and different flowers like white, violet or green Hydrangeas, roses, berries, and other voluminous flowers with small details (you wouldn't want to draw the attention away from the Phalaenopsis). They are also perfect for dramatic aisle arrangements or reception centerpieces. For now, it's really the cost that's making them unpopular choices for use in Philippine weddings, but who says that would stop you from dreaming of them? :-)

Monday, November 16, 2009


Theme: Autumn
Preps: Richmonde Hotel, Ortigas Center
Wedding / Reception: The Mango Farm, Antipolo City
Photos: Bryan Yap Photography

FLOWER GUIDE: Two-toned tulips (red / yellow), Leucospermum, Leucadendron, Mollucella, Hypericum Berries, Mokara Orchids, orange Calla Lilies. Save for the Calla Lilies (which was sourced locally), everything else came from Ecuador / Chile (ordered two months ahead of event date).

On the handle, Mokuba brown moiré ribbon and diamond brooch for accent.

Monday, November 09, 2009


A most memorable event. A day of many firsts for VATEL Manila. Thank you so much, Bryan & Val! :-)


Ceremony Setup//

Entourage Flowers//

Saturday, November 07, 2009

REAL WEDDING: MELO + KAREL (November 7, 2009)

Here's an event that was seasonally-correct. Autumn usually happens early September to late November and although we do not experience this season here, who says we can't recreate it? Left: Plastic maple leaves for the floral centerpieces at the reception. Right: Nice peach-y Alstromeria arranged on the tin pails for the aisle. Oh, by the way, here are the couple's pre-nup photos by the amazing Bryan Yap. The slideshow of the preps & wedding photos are here. I don't like wedding videos. They make me cry. :-(


I like this particular garden wedding because compared to the others I've done which were really structured, this really brought back the charm of real garden weddings. Even though it was humid, at least it didn't rain! Really thanking the heavens for this gift. Anyhow, I always believe that every event should capture the couple's personalities. It's the only way to make your wedding special and memorable - being surrounded by things (and people) familiar and loved, and this is what Melo & Karel did for their day. :-)

Thanks to the Farm's senior staff, Tony, the dried-up tree that was destroyed during Santi is now back, having been reconstructed from dozens of small pieces of branches. Of course it's nothing like the original, but where the heck do I look for an appropriate dried-up tree in a week's time? Here, it is dressed up with items that have traveled from halfway around the world. These nice green Amaranthus arrived the night before from Ecuador. The Mokara orchids are from Bangkok. Crystals from Landmark (LOL! Now you know where I shop for my thingamajigs).

The rite was entirely in Filipino, the couple being former students of the UPIS where most of the subjects are taught in Filipino.

Details, too, make the event: Curly willow cuttings freshly delivered from China and our white Moroccan lamps as luminaries to line the pathways to the reception area.

"Panalangin ko sa habang buhay / Makapiling ka Makasama ka / Yan ang panalangin ko..." (from PANALANGIN by the Apo Hiking Society)


Because of weather unpredictability (lately, more so), the couple decided to move the reception into the air-conditioned Glass Pavilion. Methinks the setup was prettier when it was done here - guests actually feel transported to an autumn evening in the US. The warm orange tones and the homey feel of brown make for a delightful way of celebrating special moments like this.

Yes Virginia, there are other uses for Martini glasses!

Once again, K. by Cunanan Catering exceeded all expectations with this setup that blows the mind away. I would never use plastic flowers even if you put a blade to my throat, but wow! These plastic maple leaves really made the setup! Now I appreciate brown + tangerine tandem more. Great idea, Ms. Kaye! :-)

The cake is part of the Cunanan package with the Farm and the bride chose to get an all-white cake and left it to me to decorate. I didn't have any idea what to do with a white cake until an hour before it was to be taken inside the reception hall. I decided to make use of strips of brown moiré Mokuba ribbon (the same one used for the bride's bouquet), orange Mokara orchids, ivy (the kind that grows on walls) and dead branches from the manzanita tree. Methinks it looks delectable enough to eat! :-) This is such a great way of injecting personality into your cake. Go D-I-Y!

The Farm is abloom with hyacinths and tiny wild sunflowers - a tribute to love that have been blessed and sealed on these hallowed grounds. To Melo & Karel, all the best to you! A happy life, lots of kids, more travels to Coron and beyond! :-)


The bride's bouquet is autumn at its best: warm yellows, oranges, & greens that seem almost edible (bring in the feta cheese, olives, & the salad dressing!). For this project, we used Leucospermum, Leucadendron, Hypericum berries, Mokara orchids, Mollucela, Calla Lilies (sadly, the only local component!), and two-toned tulips. I was waiting until 8PM for them beauties to arrive from the airport (flown from Ecuador via Hong Kong; buti pa sila!). Anyhow, the handle is tied with a brown moiré Mokuba ribbon & accented with a diamond brooch.

Left: The rest of the entourage flowers are familiar because I keep repeating this arrangement but really, how can one go wrong with sturdy and happy flowers like the Alstromeria, rice flowers, and Snapdragons? They go well with any kind of wedding - be it rustic or formal. This is our way of supporting local flower farms - the lower costs, of course, is translated into savings for couples. Right: A green tin pail goes rustic with different shades of Alstromeria and rice flowers (yellow, pink) and accented with a dried vine.


Ceremony Setup//

Entourage Flowers//

K by Cunanan Catering
c/o Kaye Cunanan
Tel. Nos. 711.0940 (look for Meg)

by Eden. events. gifts. flowers
Eden Ilagan, General Manager
Tel. Nos. 408.4230, 0917.531.8514

Bryan Yap
4215 Buffalo St. Rancho Estate IV-East, Marikina City
940.4765 / 0919.8043777

BLUESUB Music Assembly


--  Because we're kind of missing the beach lately, we're sharing a Boracay wedding from sometime early this year. Carl and Amm...