The offbeat bride: Kristina, Student Adviser at a Natural Health College
Her offbeat partner: Ki Yin, Enterprise Resource Planning Officer (IT wizard!)
Date and location of wedding: Queensland Registry Office and a hotel, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia — December 19, 2011
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: It was a tale of East meets West: a Canadian dame living in Adelaide (West-ish), and her beau from Hong Kong in Brisbane (to the East). An androgynous Asian fell for a rockabilly chick! That's us: the quiet, quirky couple who finally decided to settle in Brisbane and tie the knot our way. We wanted a wedding that would reflect our style and incorporate Chinese tradition in the mix. We both love the colour red, and as this represents good luck in Eastern tradition, we went for a "Double Happiness" theme with a rockabilly twist.
We had a Feng Shui expert in Hong Kong appoint a "lucky" wedding date for us in Brisbane: Monday, December 19th. This turned out to be a perfect date for us as we were planning our wedding on a budget, and venues charge less on a Monday. We had to factor in a second wedding ceremony in Canada into our 'round-the-world honeymoon, as my mum is battling stage IV breast cancer and too ill to fly out to Australia.
Wedding in Brisbane, December 19, 2011:
Our ceremony was at the Queensland Registry Office, so this was one of those stock standard ceremonies where you tie the knot in ten minutes, and can't alter the vows. Perfect for the two of us who both prefer not to be the centre of attention.
Our reception was held in a private dining room within a luxury hotel in Brisbane, only a ten-minute walk from the Registry Office. Our reception complemented our style and taste. We had a three course, sit-down dinner with our favourite music playing softly in the background (anything from Marilyn Manson to Buddy Holly).
We both couldn't imagine sitting at a head table and sharing a first dance together. Ki Yin has two left feet, so we would have looked ridiculous. Plus, this way it took the pressure off by not having too many formalities, and really just enjoying a fancy dinner with 25 of our close family and friends.
Wedding in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, February 3, 2012:
Planning two weddings and a 40-day, 'round-the-world honeymoon is a lot to have on one's plate. Plus, it can be costly! Our choice of venue in Canada was perfect. We chose a local brewery that has a private function room for both the ceremony and reception. The cost of the venue hire includes all-you-can-drink beer, and we were able to bring our own food, which kept the cost down.
I brought a suitcase of decorations over from Australia, so both weddings in the Northern and Southern hemisphere had the same red "Double Happiness" theme.
Tell us about the ceremony: Here was one of our readings:
Ode to Krissy and Ki Yin — Poem by my Auntie Liz in Canada
There once was a young girl named Kris
Who travelled afar and found bliss
In a country "down under"
It really made you wonder
If it could ever end up being like this
The young fella to catch Krissy's eye
Was a very quiet and reserved kind of guy
Who, when visiting the Great White North
Brought only a pair of Bermuda shorts
Now THAT is true love, you can't deny!
We wish all the best to Krissy and Ki Yin
As the next phase of their lives together begins
They call Australia their home
Along with Gotti and Capone (our dogs)
The next question will be: When will you have children?
Our biggest challenge: I suppose some would find it challenging making 43 wedding DIY items, but to me it was a hobby. I made everything I could to cut costs and stamp our own selves on the wedding day. From the cake topper, the bouquets, my veil and fascinator, the fabric birds, and I even sewed 30 dinner napkins! I'm sure by the end of our wedding people either loved, or had enough polka dots for a lifetime.
My favorite moment: We found the most amazing student photographers in Brisbane, and we enjoyed spending time just the two of us and them doing our photo shoot. We walked from the Registry Office to our venue and were able to take pictures with some amazing backdrops. This also gave us a chance to take in the fact that we just said "I do," and have some alone time.
Our ceremony in Waterloo was officiated by my close friend from high school, Steph. Here we were able to have customised vows, which was great because the second time around we felt a bit more relaxed. Plus, having a special ceremony led by your high school friend is so personal.
All of the wedding speeches at both ceremonies were touching, and made us both laugh and cry. My cousin in Canada topped everyone though. She is 13, and just as shy as my husband. Rachel rustled up the courage to write a poem for us and recite this in front of 45 people! It was probably one of the most thoughtful things someone has ever done for us.
Cousin Rachel's Poem in Canada — You're a firework
You decide your own decisions
When Krissy chose Ki Yin for a partner
Krissy and Ki Yin chose a brother and a sister
Be happy and have fun
When you wear your dress
You are as pretty as a lilac
When you wear your tuxedo
You are as handsome as a rose
You are your own person
You are not Katy Perry
So make it shine
And wear shorts in winter
So just be yourself
Congratulations on your wedding day
Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great? I hadn't seen the venue in Canada in person, and we only arrived into town the evening before the ceremony. I tried to work with photos the venue sent through to organise a floor plan, but of course what I had worked out with table set-up did not fit into the actual plan. We only had an hour before everyone came to set up the venue. Luckily, with family helping set up, it came together in the end.
My advice for Offbeat Brides: I would have been lost without Etsy! I found so many suppliers for the crafty DIY items I made. I was also able to source vintage milk vases for the table setting. My mum used to have some of these on the window sill when I was young, so this was my way of having her close to me with our wedding in Brisbane.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Bride's dress and petticoat: I stumbled across an amazing dressmaker from Ohio, Etsy seller PorshesPlace
- Bride's shoes: Irregular Choice
- Bride's flowers, fabric birds, cake topper, dinner napkins, and fortune cookie favour boxes: I made them!
- Photography: Amazing student photographers based in Brisbane, Rachael Jane Photography/Arrjay Photographica
- The wedding cake: A very affordable and delicious wedding cake (and mini cupcakes!) from Brisbane Wedding Cakes
- Groom's bow tie belt buckle: Etsy seller Bmused
- Ceramic seal: Great for sealing invites, and we had them on our dinner napkin place cards too Etsy seller Vencazi
- Paper luminaries: Etsy seller Prudenceoctavia
- Bride's hair and makeup: Deadgorgeousmuah
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!