Friday, May 9, 2014

Old, New, Borrowed, & Blue


As soon as I saw that Stephanie at Captive the Heart was hosting this wedding detail-oriented link-up, I knew that I wanted to join in the fun. I've only been married a year and a half so I'm still eager to share about our nuptials. Plus...posterity. 

Honestly, I hardly thought out what my old, new, borrowed, and blue items would be until it got very close to the wedding date. Somehow it all just fell into place. So without further ado, here's a little bit about my somethings "old, new, borrowed, and blue."


This one was easy. The diamond in my engagement ring has been in my family for approximately 120 years. The solitaire diamond initially belonged to my maternal great-great grandmother. This diamond helped my family to keep their house during the Great Depression because they put the ring up as collateral. Later on, they were able to get the diamond back. Talk about a family heirloom! 

Some of you may be wondering how this diamond didn't make its way onto my older sister's hand and the answer is fairly simple. When she got engaged the ring was still in my grandmother's possession and my brother-in-law designed a gorgeous ring just for her. In between the time she got married and I got engaged, my grandmother downsized, moved into a retirement community for women, and passed the diamond on to my mother. My mom had no real need for it and my younger sister had her eye on a different family diamond (her vocation is TBD) so it got held for my future engagement. After receiving my parents' blessing and the diamond ring, Michael had the diamond placed in an entirely new setting, band, and added the halo design. When he proposed I did not know that he had done all of this and it took my breath away. My man has taste. 

Somewhat related story: whenever people asked to see my engagement ring I always made sure to tell them that the center diamond belonged to my great-great grandmother and that Michael had added/designed everything else. A former roommate expressed her exasperation at this - because she thought I was somehow trying to downplay what Michael had done for me. She was quite mistaken because I think the family heirloom aspect of the ring only enhances how special it is to me. In fact, I had told Michael that it wouldn't bother me one bit (and it truly wouldn't have) if I was someday given the family diamond exactly as it had been. He wanted to put his own, special twist on it, though, and if you've seen the matching band you know that Michael pulled out all the stops. Again - my man has taste.


This really could have been any number of things. Technically the dress, shoes, veil, and almost everything I wore (even the make-up) was new. However, the most fun choice is clearly the dress. My parents and my grandmother (the former owner of my ring) paid for my dress and I still think it's beautiful. When choosing a dress it can be easy to get hung up on finding "the one," but with a mere 7.5 month engagement I did not want to be too choosy. They say to leave 6 months for alterations so I wanted to find my dress asap.

I wanted lace (especially on the back), some sort of straps or sleeves, a relatively high neckline, and really liked ivory. My ivory dress had cap sleeves, a modest neckline, a back full of beautiful lace, and was the 4th dress I tried on at the first and only dress shop I went to. 

Before making my final dress decision, I slid the dress on a second time, added a veil, and walked down the "aisle" in the store. The sales associate instructed me to close my eyes, envision my groom waiting there for me, then told me to open my eyes in front of the mirror. I looked - saw myself as Michael would see me - and immediately teared up while feeling my heart begin to race ever so slightly. It was "the one." Could I have had that moment in a different gown? Sure. But it was the dress I chose, Michael loved it, and I got married in it so that makes it pretty special.


I know I am supposed to select one item for each category, but I think it makes sense to choose two for this one. First, the earrings I wore belong to my sister. I wasn't trying to be sentimental about borrowing her jewelry (though it is pretty sweet), but they were the only earrings I felt looked good with my dress (without purchasing a new pair somewhere). I'm so thankful she brought them for me to try on!

Secondly, I borrowed a traditional hanbok (Korean dress) from my groom's aunt for part of the wedding reception. I wanted to do something special for my in-laws that would acknowledge and showcase my husband's heritage - whether it was the Chinese or Korean side of his family. I'm only a couple of inches taller than Michael's aunt and the dress fit, so she generously allowed me to wear it for part of the evening.


Confession time: my plan to incorporate blue into my outfit was actually to tie a bit of blue ribbon around my garter. However, in the midst of trying to keep track of a million other things, the ribbon got left at home. Conveniently enough, our colors were royal blue and light yellow, so blue was already a major part of my bouquet. To top it off, the morning of my wedding my mom gifted me a cute pair of bluebird earrings in honor of our bluebird theme. I wore the little birdies the entire morning as we got ready at the hair salon - which you can see in the photo featuring the precious baby (that's my niece that just turned 2!).

Thank you, Stephanie, for giving me a chance to walk down memory lane! I can't wait to read about everyone else's wedding details and traditions.

All wedding photos in this post were taken by Brian Powell Photography.

"Make [your wedding] a real celebration – because marriage is a celebration – a Christian celebration, not a worldly feast! … What happened in Cana 2,000 years ago, happens today at every wedding celebration: that which makes your wedding full and profoundly true will be the presence of the Lord who reveals himself and gives his grace. It is his presence that offers the 'good wine', he is the secret to full joy, that which truly warms the heart.

"It is good that your wedding be simple and make what is truly important stand out. Some are more concerned with the exterior details, with the banquet, the photographs, the clothes, the flowers…These are important for a celebration, but only if they point to the real reason for your joy: the Lord's blessing on your love."
-Pope Francis, address to engaged couples in Rome on February 14, 2014


  1. Clicked over here from Oh My Soul
    What a fun post; beautiful pictures and yes I definitely think you met the blue requirement.

    1. Haha, yes, we ended up having quite a bit of "blue" in our decor that day so that worked out well. Thank you for reading! :)

  2. ahhh love that pope francis quote!!

  3. Your dress was beautiful, and you looked stunning in it! The story about your great-great-grandmother's diamond is wonder, what a special story to go along with a gorgeous ring! Your man does have good taste - in women and diamonds! :-)

    1. Haha, thank you, Tiffany! You are too sweet. I loved reading your post in the link-up as well!

  4. Your flowers were absolutely stunning!

    1. Thank you! The florist did a really beautiful job putting my bouquet together based on some very vague preferences/ideas I gave her. :)

  5. Found you via Steph and oh my goodness! Your man DOES have taste! That's a stunning ring, and it really takes something special to design a ring. And your story of the family diamond. How special!
    I also love the hanbok - what a lovely way to honor his family's culture and traditions!

    1. Thank you! I clicked over and read about your wedding details, too. I just love everyone's stories about their personal choices! Thanks for reading. :)

  6. I've seen your wedding pics with the hanbok, but I didn't know the story behind it. Between that and the diamond, I love how personal so many of your wedding details were! So glad you linked up! SInce I kinda feel like I know you I loved getting a clearer picture of what your wedding was like!

  7. I love this! your ring, your veil and dress, your handsome man (!!!) and your traditional Korean dress.

  8. Wow! Your engagement ring looks stunning, Stephanie! I love the story behind its diamond. Anyway, I also disagree with your friend. You weren't downplaying Michael's work around the ring, if anything, you were just intensifying the fact that what he did was amazing and downright thoughtful. Also, I love the fact that you wore a hanbok to the reception. That's really inspiring and admirable. Congratulations! :)

    Angelica Jenkins @ Royal Gold LLC