wedding planning

Multicultural Wedding Planning

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of WeddingWire. The opinions and text are all mine.

Asian weddings. I love them, and I hate them. My hopes on the first few wedding venue options were crushed when I learned it didn't have the capacity to hold all our guests. Why must we have almost 300 guests, with 200 being family and/or people we don't know? How do we pay respect to our elders when we're not fluent in the language? How do we let non-Asian guests know that our culture takes cash as wedding gifts? It's been a tough aspect of our wedding planning.

I'm Chinese, and Brian is Vietnamese. My family is actually from Vietnam, so culturally, I didn't mind doing a Vietnamese tea ceremony. However, the logistics were hard to plan because neither of our parents live in the same city as us. I also asked my mom how to plan for a tea ceremony, and she basically shrugged and said her mom planned it for her. I don't know how to speak about weddings in Cantonese. Cue headache.

I looked into a helpful WeddingWire article on this topic as well: 11 Tips to Help You Plan a Multicultural Wedding. There were some tips I'm used to, like holding two separate ceremonies, but it also gave me ideas I never thought about, like hiring a wedding planner with experience. However, I didn't know where to begin to look for a tea ceremony planner, and we didn't want to spend extra money on a just a tea ceremony.

However much I wanted to wear a pretty ao dai (Vietnamese traditional dress) and have our families meet, it just wasn't coming to fruition. In the end, it seemed like neither of our families would be disappointed if we DIDN'T have a tea ceremony, so we decided not to. However, we are going to wear our traditional gowns during the reception, which I saw was something WeddingWire also suggested! I actually won't be wearing an ao dai but a cheongsam (Chinese traditional dress) instead.

A wedding I helped shoot, with the mother of the bride in a traditional Korean hanbok

A wedding I helped shoot, with the mother of the bride in a traditional Korean hanbok

We're also going to be serving Chinese-Vietnamese cuisine! In the end, we're keeping a lot of our culture, and we're happy enough with that! As for the tradition of receiving cash gifts, the WeddingWire forums have also been very helpful! We just won't set up a registry, but we won't ASK for cash either because it's perceived as rude to ask money. I also learned that in some cultures, it's rude to set up a registry. Ahh traditions.

Wedding Planning Update #2

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of WeddingWire. The opinions and text are all mine.

Photo by  Maribel Morales

I'm back with another update! Only 4 months before the wedding! According to WeddingWire's checklist, I'm overdue on ordering a cake... I've actually been talking to a cake lady, and it hasn't been fully finalized yet! I did think about having a pretty and trendy cake, as most weddings these days seem to have. WeddingWire has a great article on all of the 2018 wedding cake trends! I definitely ooh'd and ahh'd at a few of them, like the hand-painted and gold leaf ones. But in the end, we have our heart set on our favorite flavor: berry chantilly! I actually hate cake and most sweets, but for some reason, I love this type! Brian even got it for me when he threw me a surprise birthday party when we first started dating :) 

Another big thing I got out of the way is floral! We came in right on budget! I've been working closely with Angel from Love & Sparrows, who is extremely amazing at picking floral styles, and pays super close attention to details I like and don't like. She has also given me great ideas based on the random photos I've sent her, and ways to re-use floral so I can stay within budget. I'm so grateful for her! 

The next big thing on my list is to order invitations, set up a wedding website, alter my dress, and finalize some decor and details! I've also been working with my friend Vivian on some handlettered art that I'm super excited about! Can't wait to show you guys her handiwork!  I'll update you guys again in June! 

Photo by  Maddie Tober

Photo by Maddie Tober

Wedding Planning Update

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of WeddingWire. The opinions and text are all mine.

Well, it's been a good 5 months since I first posted about my wedding planning progress! A LOT has happened since then... some of it was "spur of the moment decisions" that we originally didn't put too much thought into, like a hotel block for out-of-town guests or a wedding videographer.  

Deciding on a hotel block was a process, and I definitely used WeddingWire's forums to see how to go about it. It seems like so many people prefer staying somewhere they have points for, but in the end it seemed like a nice gesture for our guests! Finding an actual hotel was so easy thanks to WeddingWire's Hotel Blocks feature! The search engine made it super easy to find and compare available hotels in the area, narrowing it down to searches by number of rooms, hotel star ratings, pricing, and proximity to our venue. We made the decision within a couple of days!

I've also been utilizing WeddingWire's checklist to keep us on track:

It looks like I'm overdue on some suggested dates but ahead on others! I definitely use this as a guideline for the bigger things like booking a honeymoon (which we JUST did - a European cruise)!!

Since my last update, we've also booked a DJ, sent out Save the Dates, hired a wonderful officiant, and picked out bridesmaids dresses! I actually designed our Save the Dates as a postcard in Photoshop and had a local company print them:

Image is, again, by the wonderfully talented  Maddie Tober

Image is, again, by the wonderfully talented Maddie Tober

Everyone is telling me to enjoy the process, but I honestly don't like a single thing about it. It's easy because we know exactly what we like and don't like, but it definitely feels like we're just chugging through and checking things off a list. Thank you again to WeddingWire for keeping me sane!