Helen & Horace’s Southbay Community Baptist Church Wedding Photos
Here is a photographer curated collection of photos from Helen and Horace’s Southbay Community Baptist Church wedding. It was a beautiful day and we were so happy we were able to be a part of this amazing couples big day!
“Do I love you? My God, if your love were a grain of sand, mine would be a universe of beaches.”
I have always been obsessed with a song in Cantonese called “Simple but Grand“. It is about a couple decided to get married at 18 because why wait when you have found the one? It doesn’t matter if you can only afford a humble metal band and a simple wedding, it is still from the heart, showing the world that there are still believers of marriage.
Before the Wedding:
We are both still in the very beginning of our careers, and we don’t have much yet. However, we still thought why wait if we have already found the one we can’t let go. This is also why we decided not to postpone our wedding to next year. The wedding is just to celebrate our union and it doesn’t matter if it is going to be more simple than what we planned. Our idea at the end was just to have a sweet memory for our guests before the end of this bitter 2020.
Our color palette was rosy colors. We incorporated Hong Kong wedding traditions (like door games, red pockets, and tea ceremony) and also Christian wedding practices.
EVERYTHING was DIY!! Due to our limited budget and constant change of plan (the wedding was supposed to be in Hong Kong + COVID!!!), I didn’t want to involve too many vendors in case we have to cancel or postpone.
Outdoor Wedding Décor:
We originally planned to have our wedding indoors, but the county’s health order changed a week before our wedding prohibiting indoor gathering, so we quickly rented a 20′ x 40′ tent, a red carpet, and some chairs the week of! We purchased some bistro lights and put them up ourselves. Also, we decorated the altar with fairy lights from our proposal. My sister painted me a wooden wedding sign and also hanging fabric sign.
I ordered flowers from an online wholesale store, and my mom and her friends made all the bouquets, flower arch, and arrangements. I was in charged of the boutonnieres and corsages. Our DIY flowers all came in 3 days before our wedding. My mom and her friends got busy the day before our wedding and made all the bouquets, arrangements for the flower arch, and also for the vases, while I was figuring out how to make the boutonnieres and corsages.
Since all the flowers were from 1 big order, they all looked very cohesive and made our boring white tent much more colorful! It also meant a lot to me that every floral element I saw on that day was made by people who loved me dearly. It was a constant reminder for me on that day and also when looking back to all the pictures that I was very loved.
I personally designed and illustrated our wedding invitation and program. It was so fulfilling to see how perfect they both turned out. I was so hooked afterwards that I also did a fun seating chart and designed the labels for hand sanitizer wedding favors.
I also knitted shawls for my bridesmaids and myself. I also love the custom cake topper I ordered from Etsy, inspired by our first dance song. We took lessons from Daniel Lee Tran Dancesport to learn the choreography of our first dance. My dad and I also had a father and daughter dance. He wanted to bless us with a song called “When fairytale doesn’t exist…”, to encourage us to work hard towards our marriage. His friend from Hong Kong choreographed it for us. It was super fun and sweet when dancing it in front of all our friends, even though we all forgot our steps in both of the dances.
We also prepared packaged desserts (a mini version of our wedding cake and a box of chocolate strawberries). We wanted the guests to still enjoy our wedding cake, even though we couldn’t serve food in the wedding due to COVID.
Connecting Via Livestream:
Lastly, we had our friend, Walter, livestreams our wedding, and it was everyone’s favorite part because our family from Hong Kong could virtually attend and they all sent back screenshots to show us their favorite moments.
I debated over a blue tulle dress or a royal satin dress for a long time. Everyone wanted me to wear white, so I gave in…but I loved it on the day!! The dress looked super shiny and luxurious in all the pictures and matched our flowers and tent very well. My veil was from Etsy. I just didn’t wear it right on the day, so it was a little puffy in the front, but nevertheless I still felt super special in it.
My Chinese cheongsam was custom made by East Meets Dress. I loved how bright and comfortable the fabric was. The short length suited my age very well too. As for Horace, we just rented a tux that was simple, since he doesn’t usually wear suits, and it turned out great. My family friend, Jessica, did our hair and my makeup. She helped me created 3 vintage-inspired looks and I loved them all! I have never felt prettier!
I loved the dance with my dad a lot. We had a lot of practice beforehand, but we were both so absorbed in the moment that we were just singing to the lyrics and had such a good time. I was a little frustrated at first when I put on my wedding dress because it kept slipping down, probably because I may have lost some weight due to stress, and the dress was just much longer than it was at the tailor. However, the excitement from getting married to my best friend and also seeing all our friends being there really set my perspective straight.
Horace and I met at church when we were attending the same fellowship in 2014 right after Horace moved to the US. Horace was shy, so I was making many one-way conversations to make him feel welcomed. We began to chat more online and went out the first time as friends to Guitar Center. Horace inspired me to change my major to Computer Engineering, which later became a strong connection between us. He began to tutor me on programming as he wanted to spend more time with his new best friend. We finally went on a first date on October 16, 2014 after Horace asked my father for his blessing. After more than 4 years, we decided to walk into another milestones together.
On February 2, 2019, Horace had my best friend take me out to a nail appointment when he and his family was at my home decorating it into a “galaxy”. Then we went to a family friend’s dinner party. They tricked me to go back home to pick up something, while my best friend was recording me as I walked into the house. There was our favorite song (which was our first dance song) playing in the background and also the house was filled with twinkle lights and cut-outs of planets.
He proposed to me in my room with my best friend recording us and even surprised me by flying my sister back from Seattle. It was perfect because I wanted a private proposal that’s intimate but also didn’t want my family to miss out on this important moment. We then celebrated at the family friend’s house with everyone we care about afterwards.
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From the photographer:
At Apollo Fotografie it’s safe to say we love love. Like a lot. Our skilled professional photographers are passionate about their work. Our photographers are trained in a light and airy cinematic storytelling style. This is what makes us some of the best photographers in the Bay Area. We specialize in surprise engagements, engagement photography, San Francisco City Hall ceremonies, elopements, and weddings. Let us help you document your love! Whether you’re in San Francisco, the Bay Area, or beyond. Contact us Apollo Fotografie today for pricing and availability.