This Pair Paid Homage to Their Korean Roots in Every Part of Their Georgia Wedding

wedding couple portrait against white wall
Vicki Grafton

Hannah and Ricky's relationship dates back to their teenage years—but it wasn't quite love at first sight. "There is still some debate on who noticed who first," Hannah, a wedding photographer, jokes. "Ricky (now a fourth-year medical student) remembers the encounter where he tried to sell pizza to me—but I just remember the pizza." A church mission trip in June 2008, several late-night phone calls, and (eventually) a couple of dates later, and the two officially started dating.

A decade after their relationship began, the duo became engaged in New York. The proposal came as a surprise to Hannah: As she traveled to Dumbo, New York, for Bridal Fashion Week with her photographer friends, all she could think about was her then-boyfriend. "[I was] bummed that we couldn't celebrate our 10-year anniversary together," she recalls. "But little did I know there was no show—and I was about to get engaged to my best friend at one of my favorite spots, in the city where I was born." As her friend (and future wedding photographer) Vicki Grafton asked her to take a few headshots while their other friend went to the bathroom, the groom-to-be made his appearance. "Around sunset, after a few minutes of snapping photos, someone tapped me on the shoulder. It was my husband, down on one knee with happy tears rolling down his cheeks," the bride shares of the surreal moment.

They ultimately decided to return to the place where it all began to tie the knot: In Duluth, Georgia, at the TPC Sugarloaf Country Club. "It's the neighborhood I grew up in for more than 15 years, and it's where my husband and I took photos for my high school senior prom back in 2010," Hannah notes. "Ever since I was a kid, and drove past or went to the club house with my family, my parents and I would always talk about how one day I would be getting married and how fun and special it would be to get married there." Not only did the venue hold sentimental value for the pair, but the celebration itself honored their Korean heritage and a few of their favorite things—making their 150-guest wedding on October 5, 2019, even more personal. "We take pride in our Korean culture and background, so tying in Korean elements was a great way to personalize our wedding," Hannah says. "Also, using my favorite colors as the color palette, choosing the music, and even having a surprise bubble tea dessert (since everyone knows how much we love boba), really reflected us."

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A Touch of Pink

elegant dusty rose wedding stationary and accessories
Vicki Grafton

Sarah Park Events, the couple's wedding planner, and Custom Crafted, their calligrapher, worked hand in hand to purchase Korean handmade paper—called hanji—which was used to craft their dusty rose invitations. The finished suite included a mix of vintage American and Korean stamps.

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Here Comes the Bride

bride getting ready for wedding with women putting on veil
Vicki Grafton

"Wow" was the word that came to mind when Hannah first tried on her Mira Zwillinger wedding dress. Complete with a slight sweetheart neckline and detachable off-the-shoulder straps, the handmade tulle gown was "the one"—something the bride knew right away. Her mother and grandmother, pictured here, both donned traditional pink hanboks for the ceremony.

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Perfect Jewelry

bride putting on custom silver and diamond earrings
Vicki Grafton

In addition to her Rene Caovilla shoes and Twigs & Honey veil, Hannah also accessorized her big-day look with a custom pair of diamond earrings from her mother.

  • The Ultimate Guide to Shopping for Wedding Jewelry
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Muted Tones

blush and white bride's floral wedding bouquet
Vicki Grafton

The bride's bouquet featured the same hues as the event's color palette—dusty rose, ivory, and sand. The organic arrangement included brown lisianthus, white ranunculus, koko loko garden roses, white snowberries, quicksand roses, white tweedia flowers, and cappuccino roses.

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Clean Cut

groom in black tuxedo with bow tie standing by windows
Vicki Grafton

"Since the dress attire for guests was formal, we went with the classic black tuxedo with a peak lapel from Suit Supply," Hannah says of her groom's attire. Ricky tucked a custom white pocket square, featuring the couple's names and wedding date, into his jacket and wore Montblanc cuff links and a white dress shirt with black buttons; these details differentiated him from his groomsmen.

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Loved Ones

bridal party in blush and black walking in front of house
Vicki Grafton

Hannah's bridesmaids picked out a tulle Jenny Yoo dress that spoke to the color scheme; groomsmen kept it classic in black tuxedos with notched lapels from The Black Tux.

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Moment to Remember

bride tapping groom's shoulder for first look in front of windows
Vicki Grafton

After having a first look with her father at her childhood home, Hannah then met her groom at TPC Sugarloaf Country Club for their own. "I felt so many different emotions: excited, happy, nervous!" the bride recalls. "I loved having a first look with my dad and Ricky. To be able to have just a few minutes to soak everything in and be able to talk to each other right before the ceremony was calming and put me in the right headspace."

  • Pro Tips for Capturing That First Look Magic
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Serene Scene

outdoor wedding venue with lake view
Vicki Grafton

In line with the pair's vision for a minimal, yet romantic aesthetic, the ceremony décor was simple and sweet; a floral arch was the main attraction.

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Something Green

white wedding ceremony chairs set up on lawn overlooking houses
Vicki Grafton

The chairs in the back row were draped with chiffon and lined with foliage-centric arrangements.

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All in the Details

elegant wedding programs in clear box with gold lining
Vicki Grafton

An illustration of the venue highlighted the couple's textural ceremony programs.

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A Sweet Exchange

couple exchanging vows in front of floral arch
Vicki Grafton

Hannah and Ricky initially planned to skip writing their own vows, hoping to prevent any nerves or tears during the ceremony. But after 11 years together, they knew it was only right to express their love for each other—in their own words—in front of all of their family and friends. "I'm so glad we did, because it was so personable, and it really showed our personalities," the bride shares.

  • When Should You Write Your Wedding Vows?
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Right This Way

simple dusty rose seating chart sign with wood frame
Vicki Grafton

Iron Grace Rentals provided the escort card display backdrop; calligraphed notes guided each guest to their seat.

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Vintage Ride

wedding couple holding hands in front of vintage mustang
Vicki Grafton

The newlyweds skipped their cocktail hour to take extended family photos and pose for a few portraits by their vintage convertible, courtesy of Drive Share by Hagerty.

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Simple Seating

long tables with dusty rose table clothes and centerpieces
Vicki Grafton

Dusty rose tablecloths from La Tavola Fine Linen, topped with cheesecloth runners, covered each station.

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Custom Place Settings

simple elegant wedding reception place setting
Vicki Grafton

Ceramic plates with modern silver flatware from TableMade defined each setting; a mix of taper candles and votives created a warm glow along the tabletops.

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Floral Accents

blush floral reception centerpiece on table
Vicki Grafton

Ikebana-style florals and petite compote centerpieces were arranged in handmade bowls and frosted sake cups.

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Wrapped in Tradition

dusty rose wrapped square box with flowers
Vicki Grafton

Macaroons from Mac Lab Bakery were encased in bojagi, a traditional Korean wrapping, and presented alongside each plate.

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Divine Desserts

four tier elegant wedding cake surrounded by candles
Vicki Grafton

Sweet Caroline's Cakes created a delicious four-tier confection for the bride, groom, and their guests. The treat's layers and flavors included black-tie chocolate filled with triple-chocolate ganache, white- and milk-chocolate mousse with Kahlúa, cream cheese pound cake filled with lemon curd, and white-chocolate mousse with raspberry preserves. A hidden dairy-free layer was created just for the bride and groom.

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Words of Love

groomsman giving speech at wedding reception
Vicki Grafton

Guests shared sweet words and dedications for the couple as they dined over a three-course plated meal, which comprised of a fall apple salad (with baby greens, red onions, crumbled feta cheese, pecans, and dried cranberries with balsamic vinaigrette) for the appetizer, grilled steak, mahi-mahi, or wild mushroom risotto for the main course, and cake and bubble tea for dessert.

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Made for Each Other

couple riding together in vintage car
Vicki Grafton

The couple ended the evening by driving (literally) straight into married life. To couples currently planning their big days, they offer this advice: "Stay as organized as possible! It will make planning and budgeting run smoother and easier for you," Hannah says. "For example, make an Excel spreadsheet with all of your vendors and pricing, and list them from most to least important. Also, ask your wedding planner or day-of coordinator for a rough timeline checklist. That was super helpful to make sure I wasn't falling behind on certain tasks!"

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close up portrait of couple kissing
Vicki Grafton

Photography, Vicki Grafton
Associate Photographer, Charla Storey
Venue, TPC Sugarloaf Country Club
Wedding Planning, Event Design, and Flowers, Sarah Park Events
Videography, Fred Lee
Invitations, Custom Crafted
Officiant, Pastor Jae
Wedding Dress, Mira Zwillinger
Veil, Twigs & Honey
Shoes, Rene Caovilla
Hair, Jennifer Nieman
Bridesmaids' Dresses, Jenny Yoo
Groom's Attire, Suit Supply
Groomsmen's Attire, The Black Tux
Wedding Bands, Cartier
Guest Book, Artifact Uprising
Music, Mixpro Events
Cake, Sweet Caroline's Cakes
Cake Sugar Flowers, Sweetleemade
Bubble Tea, Gong Cha
Rentals, Peachtree Tents & Events
Tabletop Settings, TableMade
Seating Chart, Iron Grace Rentals
Linens, La Tavola Fine Linen
Favors, Mac Lab Bakery
Transportation, Bret Baker of Drive Share by Hagerty
Hanbok, Bidanbim

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