Give us the scoop 😉how did you two meet?
The long story short is that I crashed a house party during Memorial Day weekend–it was Stu's apartment and the rest is history.
The longer story is that we had a group of mutual friends for a long time but had never met. I crashed a house party at his apartment one weekend to hang out with one of those mutual friends. He was trying to kick everyone out at this late hour of the night.
The next weekend though, we all ended up hanging out together again for a gallery crawl event. I insisted on jalapeno tequila shots and tacos with the group, and he made up a story about how he had to leave early but promised to meet up with us later. So I gave him my number to find us later in the night, but really, he just needed a slick way to get my number.
Obviously, y’all put a ring on it 💍tell us your engagement story!
We went on a bike ride to Prospect Park and went to one of the spots where we had one of our earlier first dates. It was the same spot where we had a talk and decided to date exclusively after one month of dating years earlier.
When we got there, he had recreated that date down to the homemade picnic. Stu is an amateur woodworker so he proposed with a ring that he painstakingly made for me after stealthily measuring my ring size.
You both had a vision for your wedding 🔮how did you come up with ideas?
We actually had a civil ceremony a few months after we got engaged that was private–just us, our officiant (a good friend of mine), and our immediate family. It was very guerilla-style at Central Park on an unexpectedly rainy day.
We decided to have a bigger wedding bash for the extended family and friends a year after that ceremony. We decided we wanted to keep it intimate while keeping in mind that the most important part was being able to bring everyone together.
We wanted something that would have some indoor and outdoor spaces that was also accessible. We wanted to make it as easy as possible for our guests and family to come together and get to know each other.
The venue we found was perfect! It was a hotel with a courtyard and restaurant on site so it was super easy for people to just show up and then stay the weekend. It was also close to NYC so that people who were more local didn't have to stay overnight.
Tell us about your fams 👨👩👧👦
My family is from Hong Kong and I spent a significant portion of my childhood in Hong Kong. Stu is born and raised in Brooklyn, NY.
His mom's side is Scottish (his uncle wore a kilt to both his own wedding and to Stu’s parents' wedding). It was important for us to both of our heritages.
We had a rehearsal brunch where we did the tea ceremony and it wound up being a lovely way for our families to get to know one other.
We also had a round of door games which really allowed our wedding party to bond with one another. Since my husband is an organizer and teacher of longboard skateboarding, we made sure that the games incorporated the skateboards as well.
My husband honored his Scottish heritage by donning a full formal kilt in his family’s tartan for our wedding. All of our guests loved it and I think he might have shown me up too! It was also quite nice to have some wedding pictures that reflected my Chinese heritage and his Scottish background with our attire.
Aside from our attire, my husband really got creative about ways we could incorporate our heritage into our wedding. He is a hobbyist woodworker so he made a large wooden plaque with the double happiness wedding symbol engraved into the middle of it that we used as a guestbook. He also designed a custom wedding favor that was the double happiness character as an iron-on patch for our guests.
Previous weddings we attended seemed to show a growing lack of interest for the bride's bouquet toss. So for my bouquet toss, I asked our bridal party to go around and collect “lucky money” from any guests that were willing to contribute to a red envelope that we attached the bouquet to. The lucky single lady that caught the bouquet also caught a red envelope full of lucky money! It turned the bouquet toss into an event that everyone was excited for the entire night.
Location, location, location 🎯 where did you get married?
We had our wedding at the Olde Mill Inn in NJ and it was perfect for us. It was quaint and adorable with a little bit of a vintage feel. It was easy and accessible to get to for our friends and family from all over the country and world.
Our guests were able to stay at the hotel and walk next door to the restaurant for our welcome drinks, and then they were able to come right downstairs to the courtyard and ballroom for the ceremony and reception. It was accessible for all of our older family members, and it allowed our younger guests an opportunity to all bond with one another and hang out.
It also allowed us to keep that intimate feeling while still having a fair amount of guests. Since we live in Brooklyn, it was also a destination wedding without it actually being too far away for us. Our wedding turned out to be perfect weather - sunny and warm but not oppressively hot since it was in August in NJ.
Girl meets dress 💃🏻 how did you learn about East Meets Dress (EMD) and why did you choose an EMD cheongsam?
I was looking in Chinatown and also online for a cheongsam that would be traditional, but not too traditional since my husband is not Chinese.
I wanted to honor my heritage but also wanted to reflect that I am the product of growing up in two worlds. Not to mention that I am not a stereotypical sized Asian woman. I have curves!
Once I found EMD online, I saw dress styles that would accommodate for a curvier figure. Additionally, the custom sizing option drew me in. I wound up purchasing a mermaid style red cheongsam gown (the Amal Dress) that I wore for the tea ceremony.
Putting your own spin on things 💕How did you make your wedding more unique and personal to you two?
A good friend of ours was our officiant, and we wrote the entire ceremony and vows ourselves.
We also incorporated a group vow by asking our guests to commit to supporting us as a couple and to be our community. Neither of us is religious so we wrote our vows to reflect our promise to be each other's equal partner throughout life as well as promising to communicate with each other openly.
The big day 👰🏻How did everything go on your wedding day?
Honestly, the day was jam-packed with activities and yet it flew by so quickly.
There were very few things that I think could have gone better or I wish I had more time to have paid more attention to, but it was a blast!
In the end, we had each other and our family and friends surrounding us and simply having a good time.
Seeking your wisdom 🙋🏻♀️do you have any advice for other brides planning an Asian-American wedding?
1. Feel free to honor your heritage in your own way–You can incorporate your heritage into the big picture stuff but let go of smaller traditions that do not speak to you as a couple.
2. Don’t sweat the small stuff–Always keep the big picture in mind and above all, have fun with it!
Once the day arrives, just have a good time and enjoy having a day being surrounded by all of your loved ones.
- The Bride & Groom: Jennvine Wong (@wongisms) & Stu
- Tea Ceremony Photographer & Best Man: Sam Cornwall (@samcornwallphoto) | Website
- Wedding Photographer: Mike Cinelli | Website
Makeup Artist: Coco Tsang (@makeupbycocotsang) | Website
Venue: Olde Mill Inn (@oldemillinn) | Website
- Decor: Rooted Design & Build | Website
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