Tag Archives: Groom

Guo Da Li

I have not been blogging for the past few weeks because I was overwhelmed with work and tons of reports to write. December is usually the slack month, but this year, there’s so much work to do. Brides-to-be usually use the last 1 month before the wedding to prepare, take good care of their health and skin. But for me, I am plagued with stress induced weight gain, ever growing dark eye circles, and sinus problem.

Anyway, Pakcik and I still managed to get the necessary things done and we had our Guo Da Li (Betrothal) on Xmas eve. My mum checked the lunar calendar and said that it’s auspicious to Guo Da Li on that day between 9-11am, hence we obeyed.

Guo Da Li

These are the stuff which Pakcik brought over to my house on that day. The items which my mum requested are the simplified version of the traditional Hokkien Guo Da Li (for practical reason).

What she requested:

1) 1 pair of dragon candles and 1 pair of phoenix candles (to light on the actual wedding day)
2) 2 bottles of liquor
3) 12 Oranges
4) 12 cans of pig trotter (to replace the traditional raw pig trotter)
5) 12 boxes of wedding cakes (for distribution to relatives)
6) 2 packets of Bai He (dried Lily bulb – to symbolize 百年好合)
7) 1 pair of dragon and phoenix bangles
8) Pin Jing (Red Packet – the amount usually ends with a 8, e.g. $1888, $2888 etc. )

For the wedding cakes, I chose the swiss rolls from Rich and Good Cake Shop. I told my mum that we are not getting the traditional wedding cake/pastry because of practical reason. We believed that people don’t really like to eat the traditional cake/pastry, so we rather get the stuff that people will appreciate instead of throwing them into the bin after receiving.
Result: Relatives and friends love the swiss rolls and ate all of them immediately.

Pakcik ordered the swiss rolls 2 weeks in advance because we know that the Rich and Good Cake Shop is very popular and the aunties there are very busy. The staff even paste the double happiness stickers on each box (foc) and even gave Pakcik a discount. Pakcik said that the aunties were very friendly when he placed the orders, unlike the online reviews saying that they were rude. I think customers must understand that they are running a small business and they may get too busy to entertain fickle-minded customers or customers who delay their sales process.
P.S. I love the durian and kaya flavor!

dragon phoenix bangle

For the pair of dragon and phoenix bangles, we got it from Harlyn Gems & Jewellery in Jurong Point. They had a promotion which waived the workmanship fees. Hence, Pakcik only paid for the current retail price of 24K gold and 7% GST.

Guo Da Li 1

These are my dowry set (嫁妆/回礼), simplified version. The items are:

1) Prosperity Descendant Pail Set consisting of Baby bath tub, wash basin, potty, mug, and tray (to symbolize fertility)
2) Wedding Ceremony Tea Set
3) Wedding Ceremony Bowl Set
4) A pair of wedding lamps
5) Needle Box Set
6) Auspicious Ruler
7) Lace Red Fan
8) A pair of toothbrush
9) A pair of slippers
10) Bed sheets (I bought 2 because I am kiasu)
11) 2 bottles of Orange Soft drinks

What my mum returned to the groom-to-be from the Betrothal gifts:

1) 1 pair of phoenix candles (to light at groom’s house on wedding day)
2) 2 pairs of oranges
3) 4 cans of pig trotter
4) Red dates
5) 4 cakes
6) Red Packet (Bride’s parents cannot take all the Pin Jing so that they are not seen as greedy or selling their daughter)

After the gift exchange, we have completed the Guo Da Li ceremony.
Most of the wedding items are bought from Big Day Wedding & Gifts in Johor Bahru because the price is much cheaper.

So, 18 more days to the wedding. Am I excited? Am I nervous? Am I stressed?
Like duh!

My Wedding Plan – Stage 9

As you may have already noticed, I am a kiasu bride. I like to get my things done early so that I will not panic when it’s near the big day. I read reviews that couples normally buy the Guo Da Li stuff about 1 month before the big day. But for me, I can’t wait till so late, so I dragged Pakcik to the wedding gift shops last month. We have been to:

– The Chinese Wedding Shop in JCube
– Yuan Xi Wedding & Gifts in Chinatown Complex
– K.K Marriage Goods in Chinatown Complex

But we didn’t get any of their stuff. Although they have everything we need for the Guo Da Li, I felt that the prices are not very friendly. Basically, the items are similar to those I saw in TaoBao, but overpriced (in comparison). For example, a pair of husband and wife slippers only cost RMB9.48, but they are sold at $12.90 and above in the shops here. The wedding lamps are only RMB 7.72 in TaoBao, but $15.90 and above here.
So, being a thrifty bride-to-be, I have decided to research for shops in Johor Bahru that sells items are reasonable prices. I did not buy from TaoBao because the shipping fees will jack up the prices.

There is a shop in City Square, and one in Holiday Plaza. But Pakcik said that the prices are more or less the same as Singapore. My auntie has offered to help me buy the stuff in Batu Pahat, where prices will be comparable to TaoBao, but I did not want to trouble her.
Finally, after some research, I found this shop named Big Day Wedding & Gifts in Johor Bahru. It’s formally known as Coupe de Marriage.

IMG_3617

Guo Da Li

The shop is located just next street from the seafood zi char place. About 10-15 mins drive from the checkpoint. There are a few parking lots outside the shop reserved for customers. Otherwise, just find another parking lots around the area. It’s Malaysia, parking space is hardly a problem.

The shop sells dowry package set at RM288, which includes everything you need. I went for ala carte because I have already bought some of the items. There are plenty of stuff in the shop and I was so spoilt for choice.  Keeping in mind that I have to stick to the budget (otherwise it defeats the purpose of buying from JB), I went to choose the lower end items.

Dowry Set

These are the stuff I bought from the shop last weekend.

Wedding Tea Set

IMG_3626

I chose this tea set as it’s very cute. There is a chinese wedding version and angmo version. Check out it’s website for more varieties.

IMG_3623

IMG_3624

I have the needles and threads already, so I only got the sewing box.

Wedding Bowl

For the bowl set, I got the Chinese couple version too.

Wedding Lamp

For the lamp, I got this battery operated one. Since we are only using it for 1 night, I chose the cheapest option.

IMG_3630

Ruler is part of the dowry set too. My mum still keeps hers in the cupboard. =)

Dowry

This comes in a set (RM50), but it can be bought separately as well.

IMG_3631

Wedding Stickers

The total cost for the stuff I bought is RM 178.

The best thing I like about Big Day Wedding & Gifts is the super friendly boss. She is very helpful in answering queries and gives great suggestions. She knew I was on a budget so she recommended me to get the best valued items. I think if you have a car and time, it’s worth going to this shop in JB and get everything you need.

Big Day Wedding & Gifts
88, Jalan Tombak 1, Taman Sri Tebrau, Johor Bahru
Opens daily from 10.30am to 8pm.

My Wedding Plan – Stage 8

It’s been a while since I last update about my wedding plan. Since August till now, we have managed to stay on track and striking off items on the To-Do list. I am pretty gang jiong, so I make sure that everything is listed in a tracker and keeps reminding the groom-to-be what we have to do next. I may be a procrastinator for 29 years of my life, but for my wedding, I shall be good for once. I don’t want to end up being a frustrated bride-to-be when things piled up. After all, we are only left with 3 months and 18 days to our wedding day. OMG!
*Panicking*

Ok here’s what we have done for the past 1 month.

1) Banquet Decor
As mentioned before, MBS offers us 3 vendors (June Florist, Woodsville, and Sing See Soon) to choose for our banquet venue decoration. Having heard feedbacks from bff, quotation from the vendor, and seen photographs, we decided not to choose Sing See Soon. So we are left with June Florist and Woodsville.

I made appointments with both the remaining vendors before heading down to their shops. Our first (actually final) stop was June Florist at 71 Carpmael Road. It took us a while to find the place because we are not familiar with that area. There are limited parking lots there, so we parked in the multi-storey carpark at Joo Chiat Complex and walked over. The lady (I forgot to ask her name) who attended to us is really helpful and friendly. We were given an album of available floral decorations for banquet in MBS.  Each hotel banquet package has different budget for floral decorations, so if I like to have a decoration which falls out of the given budget, I will need to top up the cost difference.

For the package we signed with MBS, we are given:
– a Standard Stage Decoration
– Fresh Flower Centerpieces for all guest dining tables
– Fresh Flower Centerpieces for 2 VIP dining tables
– 8 Flower Stands
– 6 Flower centerpieces for cocktail rounds
– 1 Flower Centerpiece for registration table

We browsed through the album, and I decided on the Canopy stage decor. Actually Pakcik liked this Venetian Theme below:

Venetian Theme P1

But since the bride is ALWAYS right, he had to give in and let me get the Canopy which will look something like this:

Canopy

I plan to have the cake placed in the middle of the canopy. I think it will look nice. =)
For this stage decor, I will need to top up $30 for each LED bulb rental. The lady suggested that I rent 2 bulbs instead of 4 since there will be other lightings at the stage.

For the VIP tables, we plan to have the super big 20-pple big table. I told June Florist that the super big table will look very empty if I use the normal VIP centerpiece. So the lady suggested that she will combine the 2 VIP centerpieces into 1 mega-top centerpiece with 6 smaller flowers around it, add in some candles and scatter flower petals on the table. The mega-top centrepiece will be a V-shaped tall vase with hanging crystal garlands.
For the flowers, since my evening dress will be red, I told the lady to use lesser red flowers so that I won’t look like I am camouflaging in the flowers. She suggested having white, pink and hot pink flowers for my centerpieces, and will put hydrangea and roses to create the mega-top effect.

I am not going to post any pictures of the centrepiece yet. It shall be a surprise for my guests.

For flower stands, we swapped 2 out of the 8 stands to flower arch. It will be placed at the entrance where we will march in. =)

After discussing with June Florist’s staff, we felt confident that they will make my banquet venue very pretty (within the MBS budget). The staff is very polite and able to recommend us some alternatives and some Dos and Don’ts based on their knowledge of MSB ballroom’s lighting and carpet color. They will also be displaying a VIP table centrepiece during our food tasting session. This will help us in choosing the suitable table cloth and chair covers.

We were glad that June Florist can meet our expectation and not having us to top up much for swapping decorations. As such, we decided that we will just stick to June Florist and need not visit the other 2 vendors. I told Pakcik that he should be happy that I am not a very picky bride and saved him from all the trouble of running to different vendors to decide on decoration. =)

2) Invitation Card Selection
We made an appointment to select the invitation card on the same day as the florist. The vendor for MBS is American Wedding Treasures located at 14 Jalan Pisang.

Similar to the florist, we were presented an album of card designs to choose from. We were told to tag the designs we like and the lady (Shirley) will explain the details to us later. Pakcik let me choose the any designs except for those in black or grey. He said that old people will not like receiving black wedding invitation cards. =(
I made a mental note that next time I will encourage my kids to choose ANY color they like for invitation cards. 

We narrowed down to the following few designs:

photo 2

This design is very simple and plain. Shirley explained that we will need to fold the red cover and stick the double happiness square card on when we receive the printed invitation cards.

Verdict: Nope.

photo 1

This design is less Cheena but we will need to cut the black ribbon, stick it on the cover and paste the square card.
Verdict: A bit troublesome but KIV.

photo 3

This is quite plain but easily accepted by elderly. But we will need to cut the ribbon and tie it. SK cannot tie a nice ribbon, and Pakcik is even more hopeless. The square envelope sticker is not included in the package. A top-up fee is required to print the sticker.

Verdict: Nope.

photo 5

This is my favourite! Pakcik and I think that the Chinese calendar design is so interesting and unique! But after asking for Cousins and Auntie, they said it looks eerie and scary. *Like WTH? How is it scary?*

We were thinking, since the Cousins (one teenager and the other just reached adulthood) and Auntie (representing the elderly) cannot accept this design, we better not take the risk.
Anyway, the calendar cover is considered a custom design so a top up of $50 per batch of printing is required. Plus, the inserts will come with punched holes and we just need to assemble the cover and inserts using 2 gold paper fasteners.
Verdict: Nope. In case the elderly complains. =(

photo 4

We found this very safe-looking design. Cheena enough, but yet isn’t too red. Assembly is pretty simple; we only need to fold and stick the insert holder with the double-sided tape provided. No fee top-up required as well.

Verdict: Ok, we will take this.

After deciding on the design, we get to choose the fonts, color, and motifs. Shirley informed that she will send us a form via email to write our names, parents’ names and wedding details. Final design will be sent to us for proofreading before we give her the greenlight to print.
One thing to note is that MBS’s package includes invitation cards for 70% of the guests with 1 time insert printing. Which means, after we give the greenlight to print the invitation cards and inserts, subsequent add-on printing will be charged at $100 per batch. So we really need to finalised the number of cards we need before asking AWT to print.

3) The next item we have settled is the date for food tasting. It will be on 19 Oct during lunch. During the food tasting, we will be having the Parents-Meet-the-Parents session, table centrepiece preview, table cloth/chair cover choosing, and 2nd banquet deposit payment.

4) Pre-wedding Casual Shoot
Hua and cousin has kindly helped us did the pre-wedding casual shoot. I shall write about it in a separate entry.
Anyway, we kinda need a second shoot session because there aren’t enough photos for the album. We shall see about it.

I am so glad that things are moving on track and I am still trying my best to be a chill bride. As for Pakcik, he is forever chill. =___=” Because the bride-to-be is organising most of the stuff and doing the “herding” duties. Can’t wait for the big day already! But I think I will miss being single!