After a Disneyland proposal, a celebration with a nod towards their favourite fairytale movie was an obvious decision for Natalie and Jonathan...
Natalie Kim, a former Miss Korea USA, and Jonathan Chung, a pharmacist, married at the Fairmont Banff Springs Mount Stephen Hall in Alberta, Canada.
Images: Carey Nash Photography
Jonathan and I first met shortly after I immigrated to Canada from South Korea; it was the year 2000 and I was in sixth grade. We were in the same Taekwondo class, although he was a few years older than me.
We barely talked and didn't see each other again until I was completing high school. We saw each other at a couple of club nights and reacquainted ourselves. We did dinner and movies a couple of times, but really didn’t connect until we met on campus at the University of Alberta. I was now 19 and he was 22, and the age gap didn’t seem like a large factor anymore.
We soon began seeing each other and slowly moved into seriously dating. We quickly realized that on top of music, we also shared an interest in all things Disney, food, sense of humour (goofy!), streetwear/fashion, travelling and family. He proposed in November 2014, during a family holiday to Disney World. A treasure trail led me around the theme park, and he proposed on one knee in front of Cinderella's Castle!
The overall theme of our wedding was Beauty and the Beast. The theme ran through all elements of our wedding including the proposal, engagement, invitations, venue selection, decorations, menus, first dance song selection and floral design. Our venue was chosen based on its castle-like characteristics, and location in the Rocky Mountains. The hall we chose within the venue was a high ceiling, open hall with stain glass windows, chandeliers, longcase clocks and antique knight's armour.
Our colour scheme was golden yellow, red and navy blue. The flowers were all chosen as red roses to signify the connection to Beauty and the Beast. The vision of our wedding day was to gather only close family and friends to experience a magical experience similar to that of Disney but also by showcasing our special love for each other.
My wedding dress was a vintage-inspired fit-and-flare wedding dress made with finest tulle and satin and features elegant diamante beading on its illusion shoulder straps, bodice and drop waist. The plunging back zips up under crystal buttons. I customized the gown to wear it with the long train.
I loved the reception. We were officially husband and wife and we were able to celebrate that in front of all our family and friends. The nerves from completing the ceremony were gone, and we were set to enjoy the rest of our wedding day with all the guests. It was a rush of emotion, pride and gratitude to officially be married.
We handmade the floral wall that served as our photobooth area with the help of our bridal party and Jonathan's mum. We spent many weeks building, designing and framing it, with laser-etched wooden letters spelling out our names and the date of the wedding. This detail allowed all our guests to take a lasting memory with them, and they really appreciated the hard work and creativity of our design.
Another favourite detail was our enchanted rose, Cogsworth clock and Lumiere candle figures at our reception - they tied everything together.
We were having so much fun during our reception that we forgot to try the cake! If we could do things differently, we would have had the hotel servers bring the head table their cake so we could all enjoy it during that moment. Although we missed having the cake that night, we did have the hotel save our cake in the freezer and we had some the next night. We also plan to eat the frozen cake on our one-year anniversary.
My advice for brides? Mix DIY details with potentially-pricier pieces to really bring your theme to life. Finding the right balance between items you can buy and items you can make together can really help with your budget, as well as serving as a bonding activity. The most memorable item from our celebration - the photo wall - was something we built on our own. But the memories of building it, the bond we shared making it, and the feeling of seeing the final product was priceless.
Steal their style!
Venue: Fairmont Banff Springs, Mount Stephen Hall Wedding dress: Essense of Australia Bridal shoes: Christian Louboutin Bridesmaids' dresses: David’s Bridal Groom's suit: Tiger of Sweden Cake: Cake Creations Canmore Flowers: Ordered fromCostco and put together by the mother of groom, grandmother of groom, and bridesmaids Day-Of Coordination: Signature Weddings By Ashley Décor, design, lighting, and linens: Special Event Rentals