Being huge fans of the reality show, Project Runway, wealth management consultants Cheryl Zou, 29, and Gabriel Lim, 35, planned their wedding (including the pre-wedding shots) around the fashion theme. 

Their outdoor wedding shots revolved around shopping – the couple posed at Orchard Road with giant designer paper bags.

The happy couple: Cheryl Zou and Gabriel Lim

Preparations began about a year before, and the couple discussed everything together – from the right venue to the invitations, colour theme and even cake flavours.

“We always do things together, so it was natural that Gabriel was very much involved with the planning,” says Cheryl. “There were stressful moments as the day got closer, but we enjoyed the whole experience! Doing it together also made the day more special,” adds Gabriel. The solemnisation was held at church, where fresh blossoms from Boenga decorated the pews in a colour theme of blue, silver and purple.

The runway theme only came into full play at the dinner party in the Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore. Boenga helped to set up a 14.6m fashion ramp that the couple wanted for their march-in. “Harijanto from Boenga actually researched on the measurements of an actual catwalk ramp. We were very impressed with his artistic ideas and execution, and his attention to detail,” says Cheryl.

Wanting to surprise guests at their dinner reception with a dance number, the couple took up a crash course on rumba. The night before their wedding, they rehearsed till past 1am in their church’s carpark! On the big night, they danced to Kelly Clarkson’s A Moment Like This.

“We were both very nervous. There I was in my four-inch heels trying to get my steps right, but our grins hid our nervousness well!” says Cheryl. “We made a few mistakes, but our friends’ cheers and clapping boosted our confidence as we went along,” Gabriel chips in. The dance ended with a burst of confetti on stage.

For the grand entrance, the couple’s bridal entourage of bridesmaids and groomsmen were the first to emerge from behind a specially built 3-D screen on stage before sashaying down the ramp. The couple followed shortly. Their parents also got to do the “catwalk” – the couple hauled them up on stage just before their second march-in.

Cheryl walked down the ramp again, this time accompanied by her parents, and Gabriel did the same with his mum. It was an evening where the Project Runway theme ruled, with fashion- and design-related props everywhere. The reception had a life-sized mannequin, displayed beside a blown-up picture of the white wedding gown’s design.

Each table in the ballroom was also decorated with buttons, threads and measuring tapes – glammed up with crystals, organza and floral arrangements. The couple also put a miniature mannequin (for hanging accessories) on each table; a lucky guest whose plate had an orange sticker got to take the mannequin home.

The couple engaged wedding band A Little Dream to entertain guests. But instead of leaving the repertoire to the band, Cheryl personally chose all the songs. “I spent months deciding on the song list,” she recalls. “I wanted not just easy-listening ballads, but also meaningful ones.”

The bride’s collection of four wedding dresses – all made-to-measure pieces from Ted Wu – was worthy of a catwalk parade, too. Her wedding gown was a duchess satin number with a blue waist sash, fine dark blue embroidery and crystals on the train.

Her slinky evening gown was peacock blue Thai silk, with a string of crystals at the back. Cheryl also had a modern halter-neck Chinese dress for the tea ceremony and a short flowy dress in brilliant blue for her dance item. Four lovely designs to wear in one day – that’s enough to make any bride shine!

This article was originally published in Her World Brides June-August 2011.