With 2016 just hours away, I have already started gearing up for the upcoming wedding season. Every opportunity I am given to style the hair of a beautiful bride on a day so meaningful to them I feel absolutely honored. This held true with the wonderful couple Mary and Samuel (Sam). When I first met this couple during the bridal consultation they greeted me with a big hug and it was in that moment I knew this was going to be an awesome bride to service.
After getting to know Mary and understanding her vision my thinking cap began turning. Talking with Mary, I learned she and Sam were already officially married during a traditional Lao Wedding and were now excited about planning their American ceremony. I don’t always blog about each and every bridal booking I have but I was inspired to share this one after hearing from Mary the cultural differences between the two ceremonies.
As this was my first time hearing from a Lao bride the details of the traditional ceremony from the music, the garb worn by the bride and groom to the family rituals, I learned the ceremony is a large affair with family, friends, and the Lao community. The ceremony program consisted of everything from gift exchanges/negotiations, “feet washing” to string tying which represented blessings.
Since I am a hairstylist, innately one of my first questions was “How did you wear your hair for your Lao ceremony?” Mary shared pictures capturing all of her long tresses pulled back into a tight and neat bun. The bun resembled a small cone and was draped in gold jewelry. This beautiful traditional Lao hairstyle was much different than the modern glam hairstyle she wore for her American ceremony. I admired both looks because it truly showcased the difference in culture.
Make-up artist Champa Ashlee of Makeup By Champa LLC accentuated the faces of Mary and her six bridesmaids. Champa did a superb job and the ladies were glowing with bright smiles all captured by Los Angeles based professional photographer Dillion Phommasa.
When asked, “What inspired your American ceremony?” Mary’s response was simple, “Our love for one another.” Keeping the focus on their personal “Love Story” of being two individuals who balance each other in personality but have different cultural backgrounds themselves is from what their inspiration was drawn. Mary shared, “I’m from rural North Carolina and Sam is from the inner city of New Jersey. My parents are from Laos (Asia) his are from Eritrea (Africa). Being raised by immigrant parents is something [unique] we have in common. Our childhood upbringings instilled similar values in each of us which we both admired.”
Mary and Sam’s wedding was nothing short of glamorous showcasing many of their favorite things such as signature cocktails, cake from their favorite bakery Momfuko Milkbar in New York City, Krsipy Kreme Donuts, a candy bar and even a Caricaturist. Guests partied to music from the 80’s, 90’s and early 00’s. The couples love for modern art and flair was seen from the groomsmen navy tuxes all the way to the brides’ hair!
Mary and Sam, Thank You both for being such an awesome couple to work with. Bridal couples like you make me smile even brighter and enjoy what I do so much more. Wishing you many blessings on your future together.
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