Karen and Seyoung
The romance in today’s wedding is palpable. There is so much emotion in each and every moment, but just as much humor (see if you can spot the fun notes during the ceremony). I think that’s when I fall in love with a wedding, when getting swept up in a story is as easy as breathing. Photos today are by Matthew Mead.
Karen and Seyoung tell the story of how they met. “We met at a party in high school, where we became high school sweethearts. After a few after-school rendezvous, we started dating. 3 days later Karen said ‘I love you’. 14 years, 9 months and 16 days later we finally married! (Weddings are a serious commitment- you don’t want to rush into things).”
Karen made the stationery and thought through most of the styling herself, she remembers, “As an art director & designer by trade, one of the stressful but enjoyable things to do was to design the invitations. I got to live out all my paper fantasies with letterpress, embossing, foiling and white wax seals. We really enjoyed the process of doing every aspect ourselves – scoring & cutting out each little name tag reminded us of when Se used to help me put together my Uni design projects late into the night!”
Karen chose a strapless ball gown from Maggie Sottero.
Karen chose an old favourite for the processional, remembering, “As a little girl pretending to walk down the aisle it was always to Pachelbel’s Canon in D Major – it gets me teary every time!”
Karen and Seyoung chose St Thomas, North Sydney for their ceremony, loving it for the history within its walls. Karen noting, “We fell in love with the church straight away – the beautiful sandstone and surrounds.”
Karen remembers, “At the moment of saying ‘I do’ we had a few of our friends hold up signs I had made that said – “About Time Se!” “It’s finally happening!””
Of their photographer, Karen tells, “We first met Matt when he photographed a friend’s wedding that I was a bridesmaid for – he ended up photographing 3 of the bridesmaid’s weddings! We immediately were at ease and felt we had known him forever – by the 3rd wedding we did! He quickly became ‘one of the guys’ or ‘one of the girls’ for that matter! We loved his relaxed style, ability to capture those moments, and the way he uses light.”
“It rained – but we weren’t disappointed at all! We were just glad it wasn’t a January heat wave! It made for the most beautiful photos; Martin Place was empty, the rain made the ground glossy and shiny. We couldn’t ask for a more perfect day!”
Karen and Seyoung chose QVB Tea Room for their wedding reception. Noting “With a long anticipated wedding, we wanted the day to reflect a sense of tradition- pretty much all of our friends and family had been waiting almost 15 years for us to tie the knot- so we felt that a more of formal occasion was the perfect way to celebrate. Both St Thomas and the QVB had the sense of tradition, beauty and craftsmanship we wanted. We initially thought we wanted a modern venue but as soon as we walked into the QVB and looked up at the beautiful ceiling we knew.”
The floral arrangements were put together by Mr Cook.
“Styling & designing the wedding was like putting together a film shoot for work! I had a lot of fun putting together the details, designing the tables & reception with the help of our amazing Florist Sean and the ever-patient Tegan from Divine Events. After designing the invitations the rest of the details came easily – the perspex seating chart, table numbers, menus, signs for our guests to hold up at the church (“About time Se”, “Finally!” to make fun of the fact that its taken 15 years!) cake boxes with little tags (“All you need is cake”). Our family help put together all the final little details – folding and sticking our accordion programs – I wanted these to unfold into a long strip- again a play on the looong journey to get to the big day.
With the Seating chart, we also had a jar of lottery scratchies (another unexplained but well known tradition of Seyoung’s to always give a scratchie in a birthday card) with the tag “Grab a coin and scratch away, we hope we bring you luck on this happy day” – Next to that a jar of fortune cookies (again, another in joke!) with the tag “Fortune Cookie says love can turn cottage into Golden Palace””
Karen tried amusingly to attempt her speech in Korean, she explains. ” I tried to learn Korean the morning of the wedding so I could include it in the speech, luckily my Korean MakeUp artist Sonia could help me out! When I asked my mother-in-law whether she understood a word of it, she replied “…… what’s important is that I felt it”.”
Yummy Cupcakes created the wedding cake, Karen noting,”The cake was easy, as soon as I saw it and how much it look like my dress, it was a no brainer. The last minute detail to use the tulle / ‘veil’ on the cake was perfect instead of a cake topper.”
For their first dance, Karen and Seyoung chose Al Green – Let’s Stay Together. Karen remembering “We had taken a few (4!) Ceroc classes (modern swing) and had a few moves to help us along – I think we did the moves we had practiced?! The groom decided to break out for a little unexpected self-choreographed dance in the beginning before taking the bride and spinning her across the dance floor and then into a romantic dip. We tried to have as many moments throughout the day to take it all in, this was one of them.”
A special treat was in store for the bride’s grandmother, Karen remembering, “My 97 year old grandma has a very special place in my heart, and her favourite food is Fairy Floss, so we had planned a Fairy Floss machine for post ceremony, but it was raining so we had it as a late night supper at the reception.”
There was one more favourite memory to come. Says Karen, “My brain could only think up until midnight that day – so I completely forgot to pack a change of clothes and shoes for us to leave the hotel the next day! It was pretty funny walking out of the Shangri-La at 11am in my 6 inch wedding shoes and what I had slept in, with Seyoung in his shiny tuxedo shoes and check “shorts”. I don’t think anyone would have blinked an eye if we weren’t hysterically laughing!”
A big thank you to Karen and Seyoung for sharing your wedding day with us today! Thank you also to Matthew Mead for sharing today’s photographs.