These two first stole my heart at their perfect sunset engagement session, have a stroll through some of my favourites from their collection HERE.
Charissa and Carlos’ wedding was pure & simple with so much elegance. The historic Lord Nelson Hotel, made the perfect backdrop for their classic wedding touches. Their friends and families put so much work into making their day special, I especially loved all of the beautiful singing for them at their reception. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of the images to see all of the amazing wedding vendors involved in this breathtaking wedding.
In the beautiful bride’s own words…
After so many weeks of preparation, the day finally arrived. From stories I had heard, the day would be stressful and I was expecting to wake up nervous—but I didn’t. Instead, I woke up fully energized from a good night’s rest, and completely focused. I knew there would be hiccups, and instead of anticipating, I decided early on to just take them in stride. And indeed there were, but I knew it would not help to stress about them, so I let go and simply enjoyed the event.
Getting ready in the morning went by in a flash. I thought I would fuss about my hair and makeup, having poured through so many videos and pictures the days and weeks prior, but when the moment finally arrived, all I really cared about was that I looked OK, and I didn’t end up second guessing everything as I had expected to. I couldn’t decide on a lipstick colour and my hair was falling after a few minutes, but I trusted Jill and Zipora and they knew exactly what to do. Nicole and Teddy, our Halifax wedding photographers, arrived around the time it was my turn for hair and makeup and I witnessed some of the magic that goes into her beautiful photos. For example, I would never have thought of using the curtains as a table sheet of sorts on top of which were my grandmother’s jewelry sat in an antique dish. The resulting photograph really touched me because my grandmothers could not make it to the wedding, as the trip from the Philippines is a gruelling 24+ hours.
Finally in my dress, it was time for the father-daughter first look. There were no tears, but lots of smiles. After some photos (one of which was photo-bombed), we (Nicole, Matt our videographer, and I) headed to the entrance of the Public Gardens for a few bridal photos before the limo arrived. When it did, we piled in and made our way to the Church.
At the Church, we all gathered in a side room and had a quick prayer before the mass. We then lined up for the procession and then the music, one of my favourite pieces “Canon in D”, by Johann Pachelbel. This was another moment I thought I would be nervous or anxious, but I was just so happy and could not help beaming the entire walk down the aisle. I expected to cry when we reached the altar, but I knew I wasn’t saying goodbye to my family and could only smile. I was simply happy—I was finally marrying my love and best friend. I was also happy that everyone we had invited attended, but I could also not help but think of all the people we wished could be there. The ceremony, for me, was the pinnacle of the day—the moment we exchanged our vows and became husband and wife in the presence of God and our family and friends. I was also very happy that we were able to include some Filipino wedding traditions: the cord and veil, even if we ended up nixing the other half: the candle and the coins. Maybe it’s because I’m a very visual person, but the symbolism of the cord and veil matched our vows perfectly—and like Father James said, needed no explanation: we are one.
The photoshoot after the wedding was a fun experience, and we enjoyed having our friends with us. There were lots of jokes and laughs, and we’re grateful that the day was captured on stills and video. It was also fitting that a part of the shoot was in our old campus: Dalhousie University. Carlos and I had not been there in some years and it was both familiar and new—old buildings we knew and new buildings built after we graduated.
Then it was time for the reception at the Lord Nelson. We had decided that we would use one song for both the father-daughter dance and the first dance so that it wouldn’t be too long, and the song selection was a surprise from my mother, who also sang it, “Unforgettable”, that as a duet with a friend, Leander. The food was all very delicious and the Gregorian Lounge was perfectly lit and decorated, and the music was excellent. The highlights of the reception for us however, were the speeches from my father, the best man, and the groomsmen—cue tears and laughter. None of us ever really talked about the things mentioned in the speeches, so it really touched our hearts to hear them expressed—not to mention that the groomsmen’s speeches were impromptu, while the best man only had the afternoon to prepare.
Near the end of the night, we dropped by each of the tables to thank everyone for coming and to take group photos, then finally retired for the night. It was a very special day and we are very grateful to everyone who witnessed it and helped make it so. By the end of the day my cheeks were so tired and the muscles so strained—I don’t think I’ve ever smiled this much before.