“We went for blush pink colour scheme which offset perfectly against the clean white décor that Villa Arrigo offered as well as the lush green landscapes throughout the gardens.”
Names: Shelina Rahman & Alan Ovens
Length of engagement: 2 years
Wedding Date: 5th August 2019
Wedding location: Villa Arrigo, Naxxar, Malta
Planner: I Do Knot
How did you meet and get engaged?
We both work for the same company and so we met through work. We were in different departments but worked closely together. My first impressions of Alan weren’t great, I thought here was this newbie Scottish guy thinking he ran the show, turns out he was Northern Irish! Alan says he heard me before he saw me….apparently I was really loud!
Alan planned a weekend away to Belgium, he proposed on the last day during our visit to Bruges which was really romantic. It was a beautiful sunny afternoon in July, we were walking through Minnewater Park when Alan got down on one knee and asked the question.
Describe your wedding:
We wanted a mix of traditional as well as modern. We went for blush pink colour scheme which offset perfectly against the clean white décor that Villa Arrigo offered as well as the lush green landscapes throughout the gardens. The blush pink was perfect for the hot summers day we had.
Tell us about your bridal look:
I bought my dress in the UK. I had no idea what I wanted and even went as far as buying a dress and then changing it a couple of weeks later to something completely different. I eventually opted for a “Princess Dress,” sitting slightly off the shoulders with a heavily embellished bodice of iridescent beads and crystals and an elegant mercado satin ball gown skirt. It even had hidden pockets!
I wanted a simple but sophisticated look and both the hair and makeup artist got it spot on, exactly how I wanted it. My hair was done by Michelle – I went for a half up-do with loose curls which went perfectly with an ornate sparkling tiara and a tulle single tier cathedral length veil.
My makeup artist was Daniela. I wanted to keep my makeup quite natural overall but with heavier eye makeup – our ceremony didn’t start till 5pm so an evening look was a must. I don’t really wear makeup day to day so Daniela’s use of airbrush foundation was great, full coverage with a flawless finish without the heaviness of your normal foundation.
What did your bridesmaids wear?
My bridesmaids all wore the same style of dress, I opted for blush pink off the shoulder floor length gowns which were also embellished. They all had up-dos with fresh white roses and green foliage in their hair – they all looked stunning on the day.
What was your ceremony like?
The ceremony was held at the Secret Garden, which is an area hidden away beyond the main function area of Villa Arrigo. The ceremony itself was held under a canopy dressed in drapes and fresh flowers.
We had 90 guests, it was early evening and still very warm but with a nice breeze. We had met the Registrar beforehand, so she had us at ease before it had even started.
We had two readings, one by our youngest son Adam and the other by one of Alan’s good friends. We wanted to make it personal to us so we wrote our own vows, much to the surprise of all our guests. We had an amazing string quartet, Cordia, who played a mix of traditional and modern music throughout the ceremony and afterwards, as we and our guests enjoyed a variety of drinks and canapes.
Tell us about your wedding venue:
We viewed eight venues in total but we knew Villa Arrigo was the perfect setting for our wedding as soon as we walked in. Villa Arrigo is a colonial style Villa with halls decorated with antique furniture and immaculate gardens. It boasted a huge traditional drawing room upstairs which I and my Bridal party took full advantage of on the morning of the wedding.
The function rooms themselves were immaculately finished and the perfect size for our wedding party. The gardens, including the Secret Garden, gave us the ‘Wow factor,’ which we wanted from the outset. We knew it would be a truly stunning setting as the sun went down in the evening – safe to say we were not disappointed.
What is your favourite memory from your wedding day?
We couldn’t really pick a favourite memory as we loved it all from start to finish. If we really had to choose one though it would be our first dance as husband and wife.
Have you got any advice for other couples?
If you’re opting for a destination wedding we would highly recommend using a wedding planner. The team at I Do Knot were fantastic right from our very first skype call to the smooth running of the wedding day itself. Petra was our main contact and she was always at hand to answer any questions and put our minds at ease. Other than that, just remember that this is your day, it’ll fly by so take some time out for just the two of you.
Wedding venue: Villa Arrigo | Photographer: Mark Cassar | Videographer: Exclusive Video Productions | Planner/coordinator: I Do Knot | Musician: Firelight | DJ: Clive Ovens & Emma Kettyles | Hair: Michelle & Fay @ Belmont Hairdressers, Gozo | Makeup: Daniella Cassar | Dress: UK | Suits: Natashas His & Hers, Malta | Bridesmaids dresses: UK | Caterer and cake: Osborne Caterers | Registrar: Roberta Gatt | Stationery: Kathryn Ovens | Jewellery: John Lewis | Flowers: The Floral Designer
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Kelly is a former wedding planner and a lover of anything pink. She believes that any bride can plan her own wedding, with a few tips and helpful tools.