Saturday, May 28, 2022

Johnathan & Gail’s Rooftop Wedding at 1-Atico

Brides and grooms-to-be, let’s accept it – we can’t count on the pandemic coming to an end soon. Wedding restrictions are likely to stay for a while, but let’s also accept that weddings during this time can be equally memorable and special. Johnathan and Gail’s matrimony is proof that you can still have an amazing day if you…  

just go with the flow

Johnathan (John) & Gail
Photo courtesy of John & Gail, taken by Samuel Goh Photography

So how exactly was the flow for John and Gail? Read on to find out!

Wedding Planning with Circuit Breaker

John and Gail started their wedding planning journey at the start of 2020 just as the world began acquainted with COVID-19. Like many couples who were planning their nuptials then, it was common to think the situation would have cleared by 1 May 2021, their wedding day. After all, they’re more than a year away!

John and Gail began putting together their grand plan. They would have their holy matrimony in church and host two wedding receptions plus an after-party with approximately 360 guests in total. These would also be accompanied by great fanfare including having a live band, a DJ and fringe activities for guests who will be flying in from different parts of the world – London, Norway, Luxembourg, Hong Kong, Malaysia, etc. With so many details to be sorted, the arrival of the Circuit Breaker wasn’t entirely unwelcomed.

The circuit breaker, ironically, was an opportune time for us to plan since we were stuck at home.

Gail

But as we know it, the pandemic showed no signs of easing through 2020.

When it looked like things weren’t getting better, we told our overseas friends not to book their tickets. In December 2020, we found out we could only hold one reception due to the rules, so we decided to do away with a lunch reception but go ahead with the dinner.

Gail

The couple scaled back their plans and it inevitably also meant scaling back their guest list to 100 persons to accommodate the ever-changing restrictions.

Plan your wedding with the current rules and come up with a few guestlists. Yes, plural – lists. These lists should have different party sizes e.g., 50, 100, 150, 200 so you don’t worry about having to cut down on the group size if plans change suddenly. That’s what John and I did!

Gail
Photo courtesy of John & Gail, taken by Samuel Goh Photography

Just as they thought they managed to maneuverer their plans successfully, they were faced with a Circuit Breaker of their own!

The venue we so loved and were excited for had been shut since the Circuit Breaker and was unlikely to reopen by May 2021. We were only six months from our wedding and left without a venue! It felt more stressful, given we secured the venue more than a year before our wedding and were relieved we confirmed an important part of the planning only to be told that was off the table.

John & Gail
Photo courtesy of John & Gail, taken by Samuel Goh Photography
Photo courtesy of John & Gail, taken by Samuel Goh Photography

Left without the most basic part of a wedding, it felt like they were back to square one. It was at this point, they came to recognize what was ultimately most important for them.  

The fanfare we wanted was the last thing on our minds, especially since live entertainment was still not allowed. The pandemic changed our perspectives. We reflected a lot on what was most important to us on our wedding day – family and close friends, and knew that it was the marriage, not the wedding that was most important.

John & Gail

The New Venue: 1-Atico

Previously Salt Grill & Sky Bar, now 1-Atico (part of 1-Group), John and Gail managed to seal the deal right at this spot. With a more intimate group and a clearer view of what was important for them, the couple streamlined their wedding plans.

We decided to go with simpler entertainment, but one that carried meaning. We had two video montages, one showcasing our lives and family, and another dedicated to just our friends – the fun, silly and growing up years. We also had our guests take a shot (of tequila) to find their spot (their table numbers). And they also wrote their well wishes on wooden blocks that were similar to Jenga, a game we could play with friends after the wedding, while reminding us of their well wishes.

John & Gail
1-Atico Wedding
Photo courtesy of John & Gail, taken by Samuel Goh Photography, 1-Atico Wedding

Ultimately, what had made the experience unforgettable was how the bridal party and family members contributed to bring the celebration together.

Our bridesmaids and groomsmen were especially helpful prior to the wedding and on the day itself. They helped with logistics beforehand, and we left everything to them on the wedding day. It was also all the more fun because of them.

My best friend, Gillian, designed our wedding collaterals and e-invites. John’s brother, Bronson, was our wedding coordinator for the day and he executed everything perfectly! 

My mum was also especially helpful during the planning – she provided me ideas and even went to various places to source for our reception table items and décor!

Gail

Gail’s mum didn’t just help with the wedding plans. Being a Peranakan herself, she has been the reason why Gail (together with her mum of course) wore the Peranakan Nyonya Kebaya for the tea ceremony. This hint of tradition added such a vibrant touch to the celebration!

The Wedding Day, Finally

The wedding day unfolded with a lovely holy matrimony in the morning, followed by the dinner reception at 1-Atico in the evening. It was a day Gail remembers down to the hour not because she was a bridezilla that day (though she admitted to being one during the planning) but because it was simply amazing.

I was bridezilla leading up to the wedding day and even my friends were prepared for me to be one (hah!) but on the day itself, I let it go. John and I had a blast, and we were very happy! Honestly, the whole day turned out so beautiful, I remember everything so clearly.

Gail

While the journey leading up to the wedding day may not have been the smoothest, everything would still work out if you just go with the flow. A final tip from Gail, “If you’re feeling stressed, take a step back, put wedding planning aside and do something else. Remember to breathe and have a clear mind before going back to planning.”

Take it from her because if you wonder if they were glad that they went ahead with the wedding…

Are we glad? Hell yeah! Like I said, we still enjoyed ourselves 🙂

Gail
1-Atico Wedding
Photo courtesy of John & Gail, taken by Samuel Goh Photography

Thank you, John and Gail, for sharing your story with us! It sure was quite a ride and we couldn’t be happier you guys made it! 😀

Professionals engaged 

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