Singaporean Dawn Lim, 36, married her sweetheart, Melbourne-raised Vietnamese Hoang Ha, 33, after dating for 10 years. She tells us about her wedding celebrations here:


The vivacious couple strike a pose for their wedding album.

A sweet proposal
He did it with a huge, fake yellow diamond ring (bought from Mustafa, and the most expensive fake there!) and a duck-shaped pendant with “Will you have me” engraved on it. The pendant was a tribute to his first gift (a musical toy duck) to me when we initially got together as a couple. Of course, we shopped for the real ring together afterwards.


Pretty little details like polaroids of family and friends add a personal touch to their wedding.

Having celebrations in both Singapore and Australia was a given. Hoang grew up in Melbourne; his family’s there and mine’s here.

We had both lunch and dinner receptions in Melbourne; our luncheon was a simple affair, held in the backyard of Hoang’s family home with loved ones and close friends. His uncle and mates decorated it with tulle and red ribbons while his mum cooked up traditional Vietnamese cuisine and snacks.


Personalised details are aplenty at this wedding.

The dinner celebration at the Port Melbourne Yacht Club was for about 150 people. My nieces and nephew, each with their own instant camera, went around snapping pictures of guests, who wrote their well wishes on the prints. These were then hung on a makeshift clothesline. I loved it – it was so much more meaningful and creative.


The bride paid tribute to her new family’s culture by wearing an ao dai at the luncheon.

Our Singapore solemnisation and lunch was held at Cookyn Inc. Pretty pink paper pom-poms, made by an old friend, stood out in the venue’s homely space. She couldn’t attend the wedding, so this was her way of being a part of it, and it meant a lot to me. The lunch was a warm, cosy gathering with great food. The sweetest part was the delightful dessert table with yummy cupcakes, macarons, chocolates, and mini tarts. It was a hit!


The Melbourne wedding party was a blast with live music, dancing and great company.

The amazing crew at Cookyn Inc used a large white cloth as a backdrop of sorts. We had a slideshow projected onto it and guests got a kick out of seeing themselves on the “screen” in old pictures! We couldn’t stop giggling. The mood was great!


Accompanied by dramatic floral arrangements, the couple’s wedding dinner at Marina Bay Sands was a glitzy affair in Singapore.

The dinner reception was a more formal affair at Marina Bay Sands (MBS). We had about 1,200 guests. Our florist did a great job with brightly coloured blooms set against golden hues and tall, gorgeous centrepieces adding a whimsical touch.

We had a 10-course dinner with a live band for entertainment. I went on stage and sang Nat King Cole’s classic, L-O-V-E, as a surprise for my husband – and he loved it!

We gave away handmade paperweights as our wedding favours. I ordered them from Gift And Take in Singapore, which helps disadvantaged women by giving them jobs and teaching them the skills that they need.

Since both celebrations had different moods, I chose light gowns for Melbourne because there was going to be heaps of dancing! I also wore the ao dai (traditional Vietnamese dress) as a tribute to Hoang. The gown for the MBS dinner was a grander, dreamy number with a rosette detail by Tan Yoong.

My top tip is to have a good rest on the afternoon of your wedding day. If you have a few hours free before the big dinner, rest rather than take pictures or do last-minute checks on your wedding set-up. I took a nap while Hoang went to the MBS gym. The result: We partied till 4am!

WHERE THEY GOT IT

SOLEMNISATION AND LUNCH VENUE
Cookyn Inc, 221 Rangoon Road, Singapore, Tel: 6748 4848

DINNER VENUE
Singapore:
Marina Bay Sands, 10 Bayfront Avenue, Tel: 6688 8868
Melbourne, Australia: Port Melbourne Yacht Club, Beach Street, Port Melbourne, Tel: 61 3 9645 3107

WARDROBE
Singapore white gown and qipao:
Tan Yoong, #02-50, Lucky Plaza, Singapore, Tel: 6734 3783;
Suit: Coloc, #02-29, Raffles Hotel Shopping Arcade, Singapore, Tel: 6338 9767; Jacket: Godwin Charli, 194 Little Collins Street, Melbourne CBD, Tel: 61 3 9662 4435
Melbourne reception and Singapore evening gowns: Le Grand Wedding, 79 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore, Tel: 6327 8880;
Melbourne evening gown: The Wedding Present, 14A/B Keong Saik Road, Singapore, Tel: 6323 2182

HAIR & MAKEUP
Singapore:
Jacqueline Law, Tel: 9113 1498
Melbourne: Lisa Carter, Tel: 61 403 653 753, email: lisa@lisacarter.com.au

FLOWERS
Singapore:
Fiore Dorato, 48 Club Street, Tel: 6538 7227
Melbourne: Flowers Vasette, 247 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy, Tel: 61 3 9419 4988

PHOTOGRAPHY
Pics Can Fly
, Tel: 9762 6274, email: yixin@picscanfly.com; Jerry Law Photography, email: ijerrylaw@gmail.com

VIDEOGRAPHY
Singapore:
Firewerkz Films, Tel: 9029 0396, email: enquiry@firewerkzfilms.com
Melbourne: Candid Pro, 119a Johnston St, Collingwood, Tel: 61 404 226 343, email: info@candidpro.com.au

FAVOURS
Gift And Take,
#P3-20, Millenia Walk, Singapore, Tel: 6235 4567

BRIDESMAIDS’ DRESSES
Sharon Fashion Design, #02-17, 1 Tanjong Pagar Plaza, Singapore, Tel: 6227 7866

This article was originally published in Her World Brides December 2012-February 2013.