Real Weddings

Fashion label founder & style influencer Beatrice Tan on love, marriage and how she maintains her long-distance relationship!

Newly engaged Beatrice Tan, 30, founder/creative director of Klarra, shares how she and her fiance, Dean Krstevski, 32, COO for a fintech company, work hard at their relationship.
 

Lace gown with sheer organza train, The Louvre Bridal

How did you both meet? 

We met at an e-commerce/logistics seminar. I was sent there to learn more about operations for my business and Dean (who was based in Bangkok at that time) attended the seminar on behalf of his company.

We were grouped together for one of the round-table talks and it was probably then that we first laid eyes on each other.

After the session, everyone proceeded to the exhibition hall where we had to tap our cards to enter. Dean entered first, but he turned back and smiled; that was when we started talking. 

What were your first impressions of each other?

My first impression of him: cute, serious and sincere. His impression of me? Ambitious, smart and not interested in him!

How did the relationship start?

We added each other on Facebook after the seminar. We wanted to meet up and go to the next workshop together since we had each attended the seminar on our own. He returned to Bangkok the next day.

We started chatting on Facebook Messenger after that. The next weekend, he flew to Singapore just to have lunch with me, which was a surprise. I didn’t think the lunch date was the actual reason he flew here; I assumed he had other reasons for the trip.

But we hung out from the time he arrived here till he left for the airport to take his flight back to Bangkok. So that was how our relationship started.

When did you knew he was the one?

I suppose I knew when we had discussions on deep topics like our values, lifestyle choices and marriage. I found that our views, values and opinions were quite aligned.

I was initially concerned that we wouldn’t be suited to each other as I am quite a traditional Asian and I thought he would be quite different as he is from south-east Europe. But it turned out that we are quite similar in many aspects, except maybe for our taste in food and movies.

We felt really comfortable together and our lifestyles are quite similar too. In time I gradually realised that he is the one for me.

Lace mermaid gown, Love Story Wedding Boutique

How do you maintain your long-distance relationship?

It hasn’t exactly been easy. From the beginning, we have been going out about once or twice a month and each time, we could only spend a weekend together due to our work commitments.

We dated for six months and went through a difficult period in which both of us were bogged down with work and could not see each other for three months. 

That was challenging because we wanted to meet often to get to know each other better.


"We had to manage our expectations and accept that we could not see each other as frequently as we would like.

But we both made a determined effort to stay in touch and keep the relationship going."


When we officially got together, we made it a point to have “bedtime chats” every night, even if it was just for five minutes.

We still try and chat every night unless one of us is out late. We would then let the other person know in advance. These quality chats help us to keep our bond intact.

You’ve mentioned before that you’re a very pragmatic person. Are you the same in this relationship? 

I would say we are both quite the same in the way we deal with issues.

We are both quite vocal about issues in the relationship and we usually thrash things out quite logically to try and resolve our differences. 

Relationships are all about managing issues and compromise. How do you both work through problems if they crop up?

With time, we formed our own dynamic in handling problems. We know how to cheer each other up, when not to cross the line and give each other space.

We make it a point to solve issues and problems before bedtime and not to let them simmer overnight.

What do you love most about each other? And what irritates you most?

(Laughs) Well, I really like that Dean has a very kind, compassionate heart and yet he’s also very driven, persistent, focused and disciplined regarding his goals.

He is very understanding, responsible and respectful. 

There is nothing much about him that irritates me. But maybe the long-distance relationship irritates me! So I am hoping it will end soon.  

Strappy gown, Klarra.com. Diamante brooches, stylist’s own

How do you see your future married life together?

Quite similar to our lives now. I see us both working passionately for something we enjoy and believe in, and ensuring that we balance our lifestyles with quality time together after work.

We will go for date nights when we can, spend time with our parents and family, and have gatherings with dear friends.  

We definitely want kids. We both love children and he has told me before he wants four kids! 

How important is family in your relationship?

Very. I would say as much as our career or slightly above. We both know that we want a family and would like to give the best to our children if we have any.

Our careers are very important to us now because when we eventually have kids, we want them to have comfortable lives and be able to spoil them without any financial worries. 

What does marriage mean to you now that you’re planning for your wedding?

Marriage is a life-long commitment and about accepting that this person I am with is someone I will commit to for the rest of my life. And vice versa.

We have to always put effort into maintaining the relationship, be patient and work out every challenge we face, keep the communication and trust going and try and make each other happy.

We have to care deeply for each other and for the family we are building together.

Watch the full interview here:


This story was first published in Her World Brides Dec'18. Grab your copy today for Beatrice's full feature and cover spread! 

Photography Skyy Woo

Stylist Steve Thio, assisted by Karin Tan

Hair & makeup GregO (hp: 9826-2681), using Keune Sg & Dior

Timepieces Maurice Lacroix

Jewellery & Shoes Couple’s own

Location Ayana Resort and Spa, Bali

See also: OUR DECEMBER 2018 ISSUE IS OUT! COVER MODEL AND FASHION ENTREPRENEUR BEATRICE TAN GETS ROMANTIC AT AYANA BALI