What Bridal Services Do I Need For My Wedding Preparation?
Before we start looking at the services we need for the wedding preparation, we need to look at our budget. Once you have a clear budget, that would help a lot in your planning for your bridal needs in Sinapore.
So before answering the above question, we need to know how we allocate the funds for the wedding preparation.
For a wedding budget, the most expensive item would be the banquet. It usually takes up to 2/3 of your budget. The amount needed would greatly dependent on the venue you selected for the wedding banquet.
For a standard wedding (with reference to Singapore customs), the first major cost is the bridal venue of your banquet. Venues in hotels are usually for bigger-budget couples. (Of course, in this part of the world, it is a custom that your guest will give you a red packet, a small token of money as a gift for your wedding).
And that collected red packet money can cover back a certain percentage of the cost you spent on the venue, but a couple should not depend on that when coming to wedding budget planning.
If a couple intends to throw a dinner, this is the cost they should be looking at:
Venue prices for hotel range from 1,500 to 2,000 (per table, 10 pax)
Venue prices for restaurant range from 800 to 1,300 (per table, 10 pax)
If a couple intends to hold a 10-table banquet, the couple will need to have about $20,000+ funds for the wedding banquet.
For couples that focus on celebrating their weddinig in a venue where good food can be served, and that's mainly to ensure your guest enjoys and appreciates this important wedding day, a restaurant is always a good option.
A more unique bridal banquet, which is less common in this part of the world, is alfresco dining (open-air banquet). This can be more expensive than a hotel banquet depending on how you like to decor your open-air dining area for your memorable wedding.
The other option, for a smaller group of guests, there is a number of private bridal venues for rental, which was quite a hit during the COVID period, when the number of guests are limited to attend your wedding.
The next biggest cost is all about you. On any wedding occasion, the bride walking down the aisle is no doubt the MAJOR highlight in the wedding banquet. Hence, it is wise to allocate the next important budget for yourself. Everyone will be staring at you the moment you march in. That's why it's important to find a good bridal shop in Singapore that cater to your needs.
Make sure to have a beautiful gown to accompany you on the aisle completing the memorable wedding celebration. There are other often-needed services that you might need to consider are photography and videography services, and etc.
The good news is, these services can range from as low as 1,000 to 15,000, it all depends on what you need.
In this digital world, you can purchase a bridal gown online which is the cheapest option. However, getting the bridal gown to fit you perfectly is always a challenge, and sadly most, if not all online purchased bridal gowns are not able to alter to fit you perfectly.
The other negative side is that the online bridal gowns may look good in the photo and when you actually put it on, it can be extremely different, and could be less than satisfactory. Please don't feel discouraged if you plan to buy a gown online. Take the points above as someting to be mindful about. There would be cases where online purchase is equally successful. In the next article, we would share how to select the right bridal gown for the right price.
Moving on, the next things that you need to consider are:
* Hand Bouquet
* Car decoration, and
* Groom suit
Technology has given great convenience when it comes to photography, you can do a selfie anytime, anywhere you like, and with the addition of built-in software, you can look as perfect as you like by adjusting the photo editing parameters, so the natural question all of us has is that do we really need Pre-wedding Photography Services?
The answer is NO, this is not an essential service for your wedding process. But it is strongly recommended if you have the extra wedding budget. Here are the following reasons… ...
In the mobile phone world, there is a lot of heavy marketing on the in-built camera measured by the megapixel, sadly, the megapixel count is not the sole factor for obtaining (capturing) your precious memories. One of the more important parameters to obtain a good pre-wedding photo is the "camera sensor size".
Without going into technical details, the simple answer is that the image sensor's size determines how much light can be captured to create an image. Usually, a mobile camera phone has a sensor size of 6.17 x 4.55 mm, while a average professional camera sensor size is 35mm x 24mm!
Hence, very often, you can find the photo looking amazing on your mobile's camera. However, when you try to download the file and print it into a proper photo, there is a significant difference when compared to the photo taken with a professional camera.
So don't rely on capturing these precious and important memories with your mobile phone camera if you have the extra wedding budget. At the end of the whole wedding process, what you spent on the banquet may not able to retain the happiness and love you've felt during your special day.
The ONLY thing that you spend on and can help you to capture those memories are a proper Pre-Wedding Photography.
Before you go running to get your photographer, there is another important factor you need to take into consideration. In the digital world, it is easy for almost anyone to claim herself and himself as a "professional photographer", as they can randomly shoot unlimited shots and select those few that come out nice (by chance) from the hundreds of bad shots they took.
These kinds of wedding photography services are not something that you should want for your important memories. A professional photographer should understand the importance of perfect "photography composition", able to capture the love between the couple, creating an album that uniquely belongs and represents the couple.
So when these photos are projected in the banquet for the guests to see, they can feel the love between the couple, making the wedding a true celebration of love.
Pre-wedding videography is about recording the whole process of your Pre-Wedding session.
There are two ways to go about recording this session, one is more of a "behind the scene" way of recording, capturing how you prepare yourselves during the pre-wedding shoot, traveling from one photography spot to another, and generally recording the scenes and activity beyond the click of the camera.
The other way of recording is that the videographer will capture certain interesting scenes to create Pre-Wedding (movie) trailers.
The outcome clip from the latter method gives a more trendy/fashionable way of previewing your pre-wedding photography while the earlier method is more of sharing the whole journey of your pre-wedding photography session.
This service is getting more and more popular in recent years, while pre-wedding photography allows you to take your time to recall those beautiful moments while looking back at it, and videography actually brings you back to the moment instantly.
A frequently asked question is do we really need both Actual Day Photography and Pre-Wedding Photography services. Let's understand the differences between both services so that you would know whether you need this service or not.
In simple terms, the Pre-Wedding Photography's objective is purely focused on the couple. The output of the photos tells the story of the couple's love, for example, taking photos at places that the couple first met, or regularly visited during dating, the things they like to do together, etc.
While Actual Day Photography is about DOCUMENTING the event, the day of the wedding process. Throughout the whole event, the photographer should not only focus on the couple but the things around them.
Taking photos of the beautiful bridal decorations at the wedding venue that couples have spent the time and money to set the theme, and taking photos of the emotion their family members and friends share during the celebration are the major parts of the Actual Day Photography.
An experienced wedding photographer will know how to position himself in the right angle to capture the emotions of all the guests. This is a very important factor that couples tend to overlook.
The actual wedding day is something that cannot be re-enacted, even if you have the money and time to re-do the whole wedding, the initial emotion can never be the same as the first experience. Hence, for this particular service, it is good to have a proper understanding of whom you are engaging for.
There will be a more detailed article about things to consider when selecting the right bridal photography service. However, briefly here are some pointers. In the industry, there are 3 kinds of Actual Day photography services you can get from.
(a) Freelance photography,
(b) Marketing Photography company, and
(c) In-house Bridal Boutique / Studio photography team.
(a) Freelance photography is often considered by couples, the reason is usually that it is the cheapest option, Unfortunately for this option, there is a possibility that you might end up getting an amature photographer for your wedding. As a result you may miss out a lot of important shots on your big day.
In a month, there are only 4 weekends where most wedding banquets are held, while doing simple maths, charging a low price for each job, will not bring a proper earning for any professional photographer per month. Hence, when it comes to getting professional photographers, expect that there will be a certain price tag.
The advantage of engaging the "specific" photographer is that if you have seen his work, you will know exactly what you are getting. The disadvantage is that you are relying on one person for that day, and if he is not able to turn up on that important wedding day, you will find yourself caught in the most unwanted situation.
(b) There are also many "marketing" companies that garner freelance photographers and market them to couples under a brand name. The advantage is of course, that it gives you certain assurance that you will have a backup photographer if the original chosen photographer cannot make it.
A good marketing company usually is able to attract better photographers to join them, however, do expect the charges probably would be higher than option (a), as naturally, a company will need to make a profit (usually taking a commission from each individual photographer).
(c) This would be a good option where usually, you will be able to get a pretty good wedding photography service at a reasonable charge, due to the fact for such bridal boutiques that provide both bridal gown and photography services, can bundle up more services, hence giving a better price (Not to forget, there is also a need for a makeup artist).
However, you will have to do some research to understand if the bridal company is relying on random freelance photographers to whom they subcontract the service, or if they have one specific photographer that they work with to ensure consistency in the photo quality.
The best choice is to find a bridal shop that has a proper photography department where all the in-house photographers are trained under one consistent standard which you can rely on.
With the extra wedding budget, it is good to also hire a videography service. Do note, that for such a service, usually you don't expect to get a full length of 10 hours (depending on your event) properly edited wedding video clip. In reality, no one would sit in front of the TV to watch a 10 hours wedding event over and over again.
Although the videographer will record the full-hour service you contracted for the wedding event, the recording will include less desired information such as background noise, people walking right in front of the camera blocking the view, camera shake when the videographer repositions himself, etc, and such video clip is termed "raw video".
In return, you usually get an edited summarized clip that's about 1 hour long and a highlight clip between 3 to 5 min (this is very dependent on the activities you have). The 1-hour clip is meant for your keeping of the precious event, while the highlight clip is usually meant for you to project it out to share with your guests at the dinner banquet.
The videographer will need time to do the highlight clip (also known as "same day edit"), so discuss your needs in detail with the videographer / service provider.
Probably "make-up" service is the most essential service that comes next after the wedding gown. Similar to the wedding photography services, there are 3 main options (a) a Freelance artist, (b) a Makeup company (c) Make-up service from Bridal Boutique (however, not all boutiques provide this service).
In recent years, there is a trend where couples go to Instagram platforms to look for (a) Freelance makeup artists, without discrediting any good artist out there, just a note of caution where there are artists that might post 1 nicely done makeup and "hide" the other 10 bad brides makeup that she/he did.
To make the photo far from the actual look, there are enhanced photo functions in the camera that make an average makeup look to be amazingly natural. Hence, just looking at a portfolio on Instagram might not give you enough credibility of the artist, it's important to include a trial makeup session if you decide to go for this option. Then makeup again can be very subjective, so never be shy to share your thoughts while doing the makeup trial, which would help you to achieve the look you want.
(b) For makeup companies, the good news is that not all of the companies are just "marketing companies", so look out for companies that the founder of the company is a makeup artist themselves. That will give certain assurance that the artists are properly trained and you will have a backup artist when one is not able to make it at the last minute.
(c) Getting makeup artist service from the bridal boutique is another option that will assure you have another artist, if certain situations arise, for example, you need extra services to do your bridesmaids or mother’s makeup.
However, many such makeup artists that work with bridal boutiques would not have many Instagram posts, as they don't need the extra effort to do self-promoting as they are able to get a constant client base from the bridal boutique directly.
Due to the collaboration with the bridal boutiques, each artist obtains the record of 100 if not 100s of brides' makeup experiences. Hence, they are able to do many different styles upon your request. When you decide to go for this option, make sure the services include a trial makeup where you can interact with the makeup artist and know exactly what you want and expect on the actual day.
Don't need to stress out upon the first makeup tryout look, any good artist would listen to you and tune the makeup to match your preference, but it's also good to see what the artist suggests to ensure you look the best on that day.
Most full-fledged bridal services also provide this service. They will have a series of designs for you to choose. Some bridal boutiques also have top-up options for higher-tier bouquets for brides that need something more than the usual.
However, if you are particular about hand bouquets, it would be better that you seek out professional florist services instead. Flower is a "living organism"; it will definitely vary in shape and color.
Again don't stress yourselves by trying to obtain the exact same bouquet that you see in the photo. It is important to remind yourselves that with today's technology, many photos are edited in colors and tones that can be very different from the original subject that is viewed with the naked eye.
There are different flowers that come in different seasons, so be ready to accept that a certain flower that you like is not available during the period of your wedding. The cost of a flower bouquet can range from $25 - $1,000!
The veil can be the least important or more important item to different brides.
Some brides wear a wedding veil as an accessory to compliment their beautiful gowns, in this case, usually, you have no issue getting one from part of the bridal services package.
The boutique will usually have a variety of designs to match your chosen gowns. In Western custom, the veil has a more traditional practice and has a deeper meaning such as passed down from generation to generation. One interesting practice is that brides can make their veil out of the old wedding gown from their mother.
If the veil holds certain importance to you, you should inform the bridal services in advance to make a new veil just for your keeping after the wedding (usually you will have to pay a fee for this).
Of course, there are also more modern weddings, where the brides don't even wear it.
For a church wedding, the bride will walk down the aisle with a veil over her face, the veils becoming symbols of a bride's purity and modesty. Note: Catholic brides, do check with the church as some might require that the bride's shoulders be covered, hence you will need to pick a longer veil.
A common question is “Shouldn’t my car decor be using real fresh flowers instead of artificial flowers?"
The simple answer is durability. Usually, car decoration is done the night before the wedding day, and over the night, if the car is parked in a public area it can be damaged or vandalized.
The next morning, traveling on the speedy highway, a strong wind can easily destroy the beauty of the decoration (not to mention if under heavy rain). Nevertheless, none of the above is a reason to stop you from going for real fresh flower decoration. For fresh flowers usually, florists will provide better services as they have a stock of flowers to make the bouquet.
Most established bridal services also include car decor in their package, however, usually use artificial flowers. To make the car decoration more unique or meaningful, you can always add a soft toy, figurines, or something that symbolizes or is meaningful to both of you, tied together with the car decor, remember to inform your intention to the bridal services in advance.
Before you decide on this suit rental service, there are a few questions you can ask yourself.
(1) Do you already have a suit?
(2) If yes, are you going to wear that for your wedding instead, if not why?
(3) If you do not have a suit, do you like to have one to keep?
The fact to note, a tailored suit will make you look "sharper" (a word used to describe the gentleman in his suit looking smart and in style) as compared to a rented suit. The reason is that tailored suits fit the body perfectly, enhancing the manful, masculine, confident, dignified, etc. While standard suits that come in standard sizes small, middle, and large might not give that perfect fit.
However, if you have a regular body shape, probably, a standard suit would probably fit you fine. Otherwise, either when the shoulder length of the suit fits you, the lower part of the suit tends to be a bit too loose. Or the other way, when the lower part of the suit fits, the shoulder length becomes too tight.
A note of caution, do not fall for the gimmick that the standard suit can be altered to fit you, suits are made from a combination of smaller pieces of fabric cut and sewn together. The only thing that it can do to the suit is to change the sleeve length to match your arm length.
If you already have a tailored suit, consider wearing that for your wedding. Unless you want a stand-up color (but then, for a unique color suit, you don't really get a chance to wear it on a regular basis).
In theory, there is no better time than your wedding preparation to tailor a suit for yourself. However, you might want to keep it to a more standard color where it is suitable for you to wear it on a regular basis. A tailored suit will by far make you look sharper!
With all said, renting a suit is also a very good option to consider too. Especially for pre-wedding photography, no color is too bright or too loud for a photo shoot. It really adds a fun element to your photo. So when looking out for bridal services, it is good to take a look at their suit collection as usually it is included in your bridal package, which is more value for money. Unfortunately not all bridal boutiques provide men's suit services.
The above items are more of the essential needs for the basic wedding, of course, you can extend more if you have the extra budget you can create a more lavish wedding ceremony with the following services.
* Reception Table
There are companies that specialize in making a nicely decorated reception table where you can put your pre-wedding album for your guest viewing. And other items that showcase and celebrate your love. Many couples do have a nice reception table, some are provided in the package by the hotel, and some are self-decorated by the bridesmaids.
* Arch and Venue Decoration
For a venue in a hotel, usually, the hotel has tied up with their own florist & decor company to fill the venue with decor, so you don't have to seek your own decor company. But still, there are couples who are willing to spend a bit more to hire a specialist to further decorate up the venue and change to the specific decor they want.
This venue decor service usually is required by couples that throw their wedding in an open-air (alfresco) venue, where flowers are tied on the chairs and a beautiful arch is built.
Definitely, with a professional emcee, it will spice up the banquet. Some couples will get their best man or bridesmaid to be the emcee, while others will hire a professional emcee. Emcees also come in different styles, some are more comedian, others are more formal, and some can also entertain your guests with a few songs.
You can also opt for a full live band performance, there are some really good bands out there that can sing a variety of songs, ranging from local dialect songs to please your seniors guest to the latest and trendy ones for your younger guests. Or perhaps you prefer a single consistent song that matches your wedding theme. So do check out your options.
* Wedding Gift
Wedding gifts can range from a dollar to $15 per gift and this can take up a certain part of your budget, hence you need to find something that is balanced between a meaningful gift and yet not too expensive to burn your pocket.
* Wedding Invitation Card
Invitation cards used to be a big thing for a wedding banquet. Many couples will take a lot of time to find the ideal card for their guests. However, in today's technology, e-invitation have quickly taken over the traditional wedding card.
Hotels and restaurants that provide the banquet service usually also provide these services in their packages. No doubt, sending those cards can be a tedious task, but a physical card is a great memento for your wedding event. It captures the date and place of your banquet. So you don't mind the extra effort, go for it! Guests would be appreciative too upon receiving a physical invitation card.
A simple set up to entertain your guests.
Luna Bianca does have a long-term collaboration with some of the above-mentioned services, where you can get a bundle of services with a discount, please feel free to enquire about it when you visit us.
We hope this article serves you the best on your bridal journey in Singapore.
- Luna Bianca