As you all know, I celebrated my 18th birthday a month ago. Call me traditional, but growing up having 2 older sisters to look up to, and witnessing them both turn into fine ladies during their debuts, I too wanted a night where I can feel like a princess; a night to celebrate a milestone in life. And so I asked my parents for a debut– not the modern, “party-party” kind, but the boring, old traditional one, with a program and everything. I’m actually really thankful because , due to some financial matters, we weren’t even supposed to have a debut. But indeed, God makes little miracles happen here and there. In the end, my loving and supportive family were able to give me one special night to remember.
Ever since I was 10 years old, I already had some plans in mind for my special night. It was a long list, actually… on how I wanted things to look like, go about, etc. However, reality kicked in and I realized that things won’t always turn out the way you want them to be. And so, to all future debutantes out there, here’s a tip:
Don’t fret. Stay calm. Enjoy the ride.
Don’t expect things to go perfect as well- doing so will only disappoint you.
Remember, there’s no such thing as perfect.
On my debut, some important people didn’t even make it that night. But then again some important people– who didn’t even RSVP– also came :)) the program didn’t go about as planned, we started an hour late, the bubble machine didn’t work, etc. etc. etc.
Being the perfectionist I am, you might be imagining how disappointed I might have been that night. But you know what?? Surprisingly, I wasn’t.
In fact, my debut was perfect, for me. The people who mattered and who cared were there. Their love and presence were what mattered. Sure, there might have been flaws in the program here and there, but you know, nobody really noticed, and all the more cared. What was important was that right then and there, it was my debut– my own special night. Everyone was all smiles and happy, and that in turn made me happy. Love and warmth were all over the place, and I just wasn’t able to help but smile and feel blessed. I was very, very thankful– to everyone, and most especially, to Him.
So, dear future debutantes, remember that your debut will be your own special night as well. What’s important that night is that you get to feel happy and loved. Don’t fret about the little stuff aaand don’t stress yourself too much! Just sit back, relax, and enjoy every bit of the moment. Remember, you only turn 18 once! Might as well bring about good memories! 🙂
Anyway, lemme share you some pictures of my debut. For my future debutante readers , I hope that this post can help you plan your debut as well!
My birthday wasn’t the bongga, ala-celebrity type of debut. In fact, it was very intimate and simple, which made everything much special and meaningful, because I knew everyone who was there– my family, relatives, church mates, and closest friends. I still can’t thank everyone enough for how much they made me feel loved and appreciated. Awesome friends and family are the best. <3
Photos taken by Nice Print Photography
Photos edited by Hershey Neri
Venue: The Oasis Manila (ORCHARD HALL)
Invitations are important because they make your guests feel special. It would be better
if you design your invitations according to your theme. In this case, my debut’s theme was Teen Vogue/ Fashion Week/ Blogger (lol sobrang vague HAHA). And so, I wanted my invitations to look like a mini fashion magazine/style diary.
Good thing URBANISTA INVITES offered the design I wanted! This format was actually originally designed to look like a passport. But I asked Urbanista if we could change the design from a passport to a mini magazine, and they said yes! I went to their office to guide their layout designer to make it look the way I wanted. We spent half a day designing this, omg.
I just want to thank URBANISTA INVITES for being so kind and accommodating. Your services are very commendable and I am a very, very happy customer. 🙂 I’ll make sure to contact you guys for future events! THANK YOU SO MUCH.
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Also, a quick shout out to Shutterpanda Photography for my awesome
pre-debut photos (as seen on the invitations).
Check out the rest of the photos here: CLICK
*Tip: It is really helpful to go to BRIDAL FAIRS. We actually found out about Urbanista Invites when we went to the January bridal fair. Also, we were given discounts pa!!
In line with my theme Teen Vogue/Fashion Week/ Blogger Style, we gave away flower crowns that people can wear during the event. Shout out to Ken Reyes for helping me scout for the greatest deal around Divisoria. 🙂 We had these flower crowns made pa talaga haha.
A compilation of just some of the selfies my friends took hahaha
We also gave out cute perfumes that night!
Before dinner time ended, we had a little game called, “18 Questions”.
The hosts asked my guests 18 questions about me (like who’s my celebrity crush—–obviously Zac Efron haha—-, my foot size, my blog url, my favorite clothing brand, etc.) People who got the answer right took home bags of chocolates hehe
In line with my theme, we placed different cut-outs of vintage Vogue magazines on the tables.
The cut-outs were pasted on vintage-looking paper. To achieve that effect, we dipped the paper in coffee. Hehe.
(A shoutout to Kris Villongco, my party planner friend, for giving me this idea!!!)
Oh, and for those asking, I was able to buy vintage Vogue Magazines (circa 1990s) from thrift shops in Cubao Expo!
Kris Villongco, being the awesome planner he is, was also the one who suggested me to incorporate the top 15 fashion capitals of the world on my table arrangement. So instead of having the conventional table number, we had fashionable cities instead.
(lol Kris is actually my classmate in two of my classes this semester. We were making chika one time during class when our minds started squeezing out creative juices. Heehee)
The stand up photos of the cities were made by K Signs and Designs.
Outside the ballroom, we set-up cocktail tables. On these two tables were some of my pictures placed. I printed out random photos from photoshoots I had from 2012-2014. 🙂
To all my photographer friends (esp. Junessa Rendon, Kat Rosario, Gerard Del Mundo, Paula Sabrine, etc etc), thank you so much for these photos!
Now the fun part. Haha! It is highly suggested that you create your own hashtag for your debut/event. It will really help you keep track of your guests’ photos! :))
Make sure to get creative with it!
My hashtag was #TheTeenageQueenAt18.
I chose this to be my hashtag because it’s really “me”, and that way, it’s special.
Before arriving with this though, I posted a status on Facebook asking my friends to suggest a hashtag.
Some of the suggestions were:
HAHAHAHAHA hay nako. Super bet ko yung hersheycomes buttttt it also has another meaning to it sooo uhm. =))))
Another example of a cute hashtag was what my sister used for her wedding. It was a Neri-Granada nuptial, and their official hashtag was: #theGranWedding
HEEHEE CUTE DIBA
Oh, I also remember last Christmas, my family and I made use of this hashtag:
#NeriChristmas !!! HAHAHAHA witty diba?!
Anyway, I saw a lot of cute and funny posts on Instagram that night :)) The person nga pala with the best photo got to take home a ONE POUND Hershey’s chocolate bar. LOL ang kulit lang.
My favorite set of photos though was that of my friends who made fun of my standup :)) Here are just some of them:
(if you wanna see the rest of em, just search for #theteenagequeenat18 on IG!)
Aaaand let me leave you with this one, from my friend Gia.
The caption of this was: “A wild Hershey appeared!!!” =))
Stay tuned for more posts and debut tips!!!!
The Teenage Queen