It was really hard to find vendors for our wedding, not to mention we were doing that remotely -- we currently live in Chicago, and the wedding was to be held in Seattle because our friends and family are mostly there. My typical selection process includes initial emails, and then a Skype session.
I'd be lying to say I am not picky when it comes to photography. On top of that, I really wanted to find someone that matched our personality and were excited to be by our side on our most special day. When I skyped with Kimberly from Alante Photography, she was sooooo excited! She might have even been more excited than me when talking about my wedding. :) That's when I knew she was the one.
We knew we wanted a hotel to start with, then went from there. The Fairmont Olympic Hotel was the first Seattle wedding venue we visited and the classical, elegant vibe could not be matched anywhere else. We visited two more hotels after that, and the whole time we couldn't stop thinking how gorgeous the Spanish Ballroom was. I guess that was it!
The Georgian, in the Fairmont Olympic Hotel catered our event. The food absolutely blew us away, it was one of the major compliments that all our guests had after the wedding - and trust us, we had a tough audience. We really deserve some of the credit for picking the menu, but they deserve the kudos for the execution.
When we picked the menu during our tasting (and we are self-professed 'foodies') we knew it was going to be good. But on the wedding day, we still had our doubts considering they had to serve 150+ people -- our doubts were wiped away immediately after we had the first bite of our crab cake appetizer.
Our menu consisted of 3 courses: the first course was a crabcake, the second course was duck consomme, and the third was a choice between halibut with risotto (the risotto, I still think is one of the best risottos I've had), new york strip steak, and pasta.
The Korean aspect of our wedding day was something we knew would be fun and exciting. It was a bit stressful having to switch clothes, learning how to bow and pour tea properly, but everyone had a good laugh. More importantly, I know our parents really appreciated our effort to include their time and culture.
I don't know what I would've done without our wedding coordinator. We had Caitlin from Your Day Your Way. She made my life so much easier given our out-of-town planning. She sent me monthly checklists to make sure I locked in the best Seattle wedding vendors given our budget. She also did the initial screening so I only had to talk with three different vendors for each category. Unfortunately Caitlin couldn't make it on the day-of due to a family emergency, but her boss Sydney was there to help me on the wedding day. And I really really really appreciated her help -- without her, I wouldn't have been able to pin up my dresses, or hand out payments for vendors, or set up name cards!
I think our theme was dictated by our venue: we didn't have any specific theme in mind at first, and I wasn't the type of girl that had been dreaming about the perfect wedding my whole life. Then we booked the wedding venue, the Fairmont Olympic Hotel in downtown Seattle. It's a very historic and elegant site. The Spanish Ballroom, where our reception was held, was simply the most grand ballroom I've ever seen. I guess the rest is history - you have to go with classic and elegant if you are having your wedding at Fairmont.
I was seriously dreading picking a florist, because I am not a big flower person -- never really liked flowers, nor do I ever want flowers on my birthday or Valentine's Day. So my first sentence when I spoke with the florist during the selection process was always "I don't want any big floral centerpieces at my wedding". I guess that probably turned off a lot of people. Fortunately our wedding coordinator suggested Rented Elegance.
Michael from Rented Elegance did a fantastic job designing the candelabras - we had three different styles for centerpieces: first style was a spiral candelabra, second style was a classic candelabra that holds five glass tulip votives, and the last style was a cylinder glass vase with fresh orange Callas inside. All had votives at the bottom and rose petals scattered on the table between the candles. I could not believe how beautiful they turned out! They brought out the elegance of the Spanish Ballroom at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel even more!
Keep in mind the big picture. What I mean by this is there will undoubtedly be times of stress, fighting (a lot of fighting), angst, and anxiousness before and during the wedding. What kept us sane was knowing that at the end of the day, it's just not that big of a deal. After the wedding you will be husband and wife for the rest of your life, the wedding is just a big ol' party.
Photographer: Kimberly of Alante Photography
2nd Photographer: Shane Macomber
Venue: The Fairmont Olympic Hotel
Catering: The Georgian Restaurant
Wedding Cake: The Georgian Restaurant
Stationery: Wedding Paper Divas
Bride's Dress: Vera Wang
Flowers and Decor Rentals: Rented Elegance
Wedding Coordination: Your Day Your Way Event and Wedding Planning
Beauty: Poppy Artistry