No Gryffindors were harmed in the planning of this party.
All the way back in high school, my best friends and I (henceforth known as the Fingals) would always wonder who would get married first. We could never agree on an answer, but we knew that whoever it was going to be, would be special for all of us.
Fast forward to last year, Dani got down on one knee in Italy and proposed to our girl Sam. Having been together for seven years then, Dani and Sam have always been our OTP, sharing so much love, warmth, and creativity between them despite enduring long periods of time not seeing each other. Now they’re going to be canon, and we couldn’t be happier.
Everyone started getting in a frenzy thinking of the bachelorette: A wild weekend in Hong Kong? A girls’ beach trip to Bantayan Island? With Sam swept in a flurry of preparations for a big wedding, we couldn’t possibly get her away for more than a couple of hours. Also, she requested things to be innocent to accommodate younger family members, so we turned to the next best thing we could think of—one that has defined Sam’s fangirl identity, as well as our friendship from years and years back.
We threw her a Harry Potter-themed bridal shower.
Venue & Decor
Unlike Singapore, there is no Potter-themed establishment in Cebu, so we had to get creative.
Marisse Patisserie, a quaint and charming café tucked in one of Cebu’s quieter streets, has become a popular venue for intimate events, and is best known for its afternoon tea. While its ambiance is far from resembling anything in the Wizarding World, we were sold on the fact that it was just enough to accommodate all of us, and more importantly, they had butterbeer.
Initially, this gave us the impression they actually have a Harry Potter-themed tea party. Although they were quick to deny it, they were as helpful and eager as house elves to make one happen. We also tapped the services of artist Alan Bejec to craft us some set pieces.
In line with the theme, we asked the guests to wear white dress shirts, with neckties made by Carlo Damolo provided by us after the Sorting Ceremony. Our bride Sam was given her own robe, made by H&S Clothing.
If you ask me, where Marisse Patisserie really went all out with the theme was on their dessert buffet, and with good reason: They’re also known to make delicious pastries. We were really surprised and touched at the effort Marisse Patisserie made.
Additionally, the rest of the Head Girls and I also curated more Potter-related treats, a mix of official ones and stuff we DIY’d.
It wouldn’t be a bridal shower without some games, and naturally, we also went a little extra on the Potter theme here.
In order to come up with teams, we Sorted each Hogwarts student into Houses, with us organizers serving as Head Girls. As much as we tried to even the playing field, some guests couldn’t make it at the last minute, resulting in a greater number of Hufflepuffs and Slytherins over Ravenclaws and Gryffindors. The minority were game to practice some inter-House unity and joined the bigger groups for some activities.
… and of course, we couldn’t have a Harry Potter-themed party without
That’s right, guys and gals: We made Quidditch happen.
Marisse Patisserie graciously allowed us to use the grounds right next to the café, so we asked our artist Alan to make Quidditch hoops. Rules for Muggle Quidditch already exist (we used this for reference), so besides the hoops, we bought balls downtown for our Quaffles and Bludgers, and brooms from all the way in Consolacion for the players. Our Golden Snitch was our friend Sherry; Seekers had to nab a tennis ball wrapped in a yellow sock from her to win the game.
A stripper may have been out of the question, although we delighted in Sam squirming when she thought she got one. Really, though, as we were throwing her a Harry Potter-themed bridal shower anyway, it was only fitting we got her dream guy from the universe to host it.
Since Cedric Diggory has long been gone, and we couldn’t slide into Robert Pattinson’s DMs, we went with Gabriel Miko Gomez of Dreamcatchers Live. His group provides performances depending on an event’s theme—Disney, Marvel, Greatest Showman, name it, they’ve likely done it.
What Gab lacked for not being Robert Pattinson, he made up for in charisma and energy (not to mention looking good in a Hufflepuff uniform), bringing the party from one activity to another seamlessly.
Moments with our Bride
Even with all the attention to our detail, the center of the afternoon’s festivities was our bride-to-be, Sam. This ray of sunshine is our true north, the one person who holds so many people together.
All of us are excited for your next great adventure—with Dani. Best wishes, Sam!