Jade Seah and Terence Lim at their dinner reception at Chijmes.

1. Destination weddings
Singer Ciara married American football quarterback Russell Wilson at Peckforton Castle in Cheshire, England. Kim Kardashian and Kanye West said “I do” in a 16th century castle in Florence, Italy. Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz married right by the water on the French island of Corsica.

See also: 4 things to note about planning a destination wedding, beautiful AirBnb properties to look to for your nuptials, and castles you can actually get married in.

Travel TV host Denise Keller wed creative director Robert Gaxiola at a private beach wedding at Banyan Tree Ungasan in Bali. You can, too. South-east Asia is famed for its beautiful beach resorts, and many happen to be in Phuket and Bali, both of which are in easy reach from Singapore – and popular with jet-setting Singaporean brides. 

Budget tip: You can fly to an all-inclusive resort, get married and stay for a deluxe honeymoon for less than it would cost you to host a celebration at home. Consider a smaller guest list and putting them up in more affordable hotels to stay within budget.


Hanging flowers up the wow factor at the wedding of Gabrielle Chelsea Olivia Wijaya and Ralph Glenn Alinskie at Hotel Mulia Senayan in Jakarta, Indonesia.

2. Wedding gowns
Celebrity brides will stop at nothing to get the dress of their dreams. Angelababy wore a custom Dior couture gown, Angelina Jolie went with Atelier Versace. Sofia Vergara had on a custom Zuhair Murad. Budget tip: If you want the same look without spending a fortune, look out for the sample sales at bridal boutiques that carry international labels. Alternatively, since it’s unlikely that you will be wearing this gown again, you could rent one and save yourself hundreds or thousands of dollars.

See also: Some of the most expensive celebrity wedding dresses around the world.

3. Evening gowns 
Take a look at trending red carpet looks for inspiration. Eva Green’s gorgeous gold number by Ellie Saab at the Golden Globes 2016 was one of the best dresses of the night. We also love Amal Clooney’s mellow yellow, one-shouldered chiffon Atelier Versace gown at the Cannes Film Festival 2016.

Budget tip: You don’t need something shamelessly extravagant to look unforgettably fabulous. Think an elegant, jewel-toned style paired with crystal-embellished accessories. 

See also: glamorous evening gowns for splendid weddings.


Denise Keller’s vanilla and cream cake with edible gold leaves.​

4. Wedding cakes
Absolutely love Angelababy’s multi-tiered carousel wedding cake with white flowers? We do, too, and then we remembered that it would set you back by thousands of dollars.

Budget tip: Instead of creating an extravagant cake that can feed all of your guests, have a smaller but just as beautiful creation for the cake-cutting. And then have the catering staff cut up and distribute a simpler sheet cake of the same flavour to your guests.

See also: things to ask your wedding cake baker, 16 Singapore cake bakers who can help you create your dream wedding cake, and 9 of the prettiest Singapore celebrity wedding cakes we’ve seen so far.


Bridesmaids in floor length dresses, a lush floral arbour and real petals instead of confetti gave Jenny Balai and Bernard Tan’s wedding at Ma Joly in Bali the luxe touch.

5. Flowers
Magnificent fresh-flower walls and centrepieces with cascading blooms are the stuff of celebrity weddings. Jade Seah for instance, celebrated her nuptials in a wedding hall with a gorgeous flower ceiling and floral table runners.

See also: 7 wedding backdrops we love from Instagram.


An all-white look – from the chairs to a carpet of petals – lends an air of sophistication.

Budget tip: Be smart with your flower choices. Nix seasonal blooms like peonies, and you can get more flowers for less money to transform your venue into a flower-filled paradise. Other solutions: Have just a few statement pieces that will impress guests as they enter your venue, or go for fake flowers that look incredibly real and you won’t have to worry about them wilting in the heat or starting to fall apart even before the festivities begin.

See also: alternative flowers to consider when your preferred ones aren’t in season.


Real couple Eileen Lew and Benjamin Seah’s glamorous Alice in Wonderland-themed wedding at Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore.​

6. Hair & Makeup
Your wedding is your chance to be a star for a day, so why not draw inspiration for your bridal hair and makeup from your favourite celebrity beauty looks? For instance, Chrissy Teigen’s peach-toned blush is universally flattering and makes a subtle but lasting impression.
Budget tip: Show your makeup artist and hairstylist photos or tear sheets of your favourite celebrities on the red carpet, and let them work their magic.


Candles and flower arrangements instead of table runners glam up a long dinner table setting.

7. Giving back
Instead of gifts, Angelababy and Huang Xiaoming as well as Sofia Vergara and Joe Manganiello asked their guests to donate to a few chosen charities. And following the announcement of their Royal Wedding, Prince William and Kate Middleton suggested that 26 charities they selected should benefit from charitable gifts made by the public in place of presents, and established The Prince William and Miss Catherine Middleton Charitable Gift Fund. 

See also: celebrities who gave back at their weddings, 6 charitable ways and vendors to celebrate your union, and 5 more ways to give back.

Budget tip: Embrace this idea yourself by buying your wedding favours and other essentials like your bouquet and decorations from non-profit organisations. 

Here are some you can support while planning your union: 

Movement For The Intellectually Disabled Of Singapore (Minds)
Minds offers a wide range of bakes such as cookies, tarts, biscuits and muffins for your dessert table. They also have a variety of customised packages for favours. Find out more at www.minds.org.sg.

Bliss Restaurant And Catering
This social enterprise offers employment opportunities to all without discrimination, including the intellectually disabled, people with hearing difficulties and former offenders. It caters for wedding buffets, rehearsal inners and other occasions. It also donates groceries to low-income households. Find out more at www.blissrestaurant.com.sg.

Gift And Take
Order your handmade favours from this organisation that employs special needs and low-income beneficiaries in Singapore and works with NGOs in such countries as Vietnam and Cambodia. Find out more at www.giftandtake.com

Blooms Of Hope 
This organisation helps equip women from low-income families with skills to prepare them for future employment opportunities. They do bouquets, floral arrangements, terrariums, and hampers. Find out more at www.facebook.com/bloomsofhope.reachfsc.

The Nail Social 
This socially-conscious salon was established with the aim of training and employing local underprivileged women in order to help them progress from a position of vulnerability to one of security and self-sufficiency. It offers manicure, pedicure and foot massage services, drinks and snacks, as well as fair trade retail items. You’ll also be glad to know that most of the products it uses or sells are non-toxic, eco-friendly, fair-trade and/or cruelty-free. Find out more at www.thenailsocial.co.

Studio Favor 
Its unique favours are designed and packed by the physically disabled, psychiatrically challenged, and needy families. Find out more at www.studiofavor.com

This story was first published in Her World Brides Sept 2016.