PHOTOGRAPHY BY GUCIO PHOTOGRAPHY
Not even a drizzly day could put a damper on Janice Lam and Kelven Ng's gorgeous outdoor I dos.
Just as Janice Lam was contemplating a move overseas, a friend introduced her to Kelven Ng, who’d just returned to Vancouver after working abroad. The two started dating, and Janice put her plan on hold… but not for long.
“About a year after we met we moved to Australia together,” she says, smiling. “It was a leap of faith but, somehow, I knew everything would work out.”
Family and friends, too, assumed marriage wasn’t a long way off and, less than two years later, months ahead of their move back to North America, Kelven proposed to Janice with a custom-designed ring featuring an emerald-cut stone sourced by a contact in Vancouver. Though the wedding wouldn’t transpire for at least another year and a half, the newly engaged couple began planning right away, locking down Hart House Restaurant in Burnaby as their venue.
“Kelven had been there before and knew I’d love the setting,” Janice says, with Kelven adding, “We wanted the wedding to be romantic and warm, like a piano or jazz bar but with garden elements. We wanted guests to think back on it with a feeling of nostalgia.”
Though their big day started off damp, the couple rolled the dice and insisted on keeping their ceremony outdoors. Luckily, the rain tapered off just as Janice walked down the aisle, beaming to her groom, as the waters of Deer Lake provided a fairy-tale backdrop.
“The sun came out as we finished saying our ‘I dos,’ so our gamble paid off,” Kelven recalls. Janice agrees. “It was a perfect moment, surrounded by nature, and having everyone who means so much to us there. It was a day neither of us will ever forget.”
Janice found her strapless, form-fitting Annasul Y. gown on a trip to Hong Kong and was immediately drawn to its unique train, made of five different pieces of lace. Kelven’s custom-made Simpson Sin Tailors suit was also sourced in Hong Kong.
Garden Party Flowers custom-built an arbour draped in peonies, freesias, garden roses and Italian ruscus greenery to mimic the blooms in the bride’s bouquet.
The couple kept the decor for their outdoor ceremony simple, letting Mother Nature shine. A hand-hewn sign at the top of the aisle read, “I love you not only for what you are, but for what I am when I’m with you.”
Kelven’s groomsmen looked dapper in tailored Peter Jackson suits while Janice’s bridesmaids stunned in matching floor-length blush chiffon gowns featuring sweetheart bodices and sheer necklines from Melbourne, Australia-based Forever New.
An elegant tent, provided by Hart House, boasted clear sides that showcased the natural beauty beyond. Envisioning a truly romantic reception space, Janice and Kelven rented an additional crystal chandelier to hang, lowered, over the head table. Their 130 guests sat down to a delicious three-course meal at tables set with cream-coloured linens, lit candles, pale-gold accents and pretty white-and-blush centrepieces.
Eye-catching signage (including a seating chart, place cards and menus) was created by Blushtype Modern Calligraphy & Design. Confectioner Alexandra Hale of Xanny Bakes designed the couple’s two-tiered, peony-adorned chocolate ganache cake.
Janice and Kelven opted for Petite Pearl Events’ partial planning package, designed for couples who have already planned various elements of their wedding on their own but want extra assistance in certain areas. “We sourced most of the vendors ourselves but wanted someone to manage the decorating of the venue and coordinate everything on the day of, so that we could enjoy our wedding stress-free,” Janice explains.
Talk about doing double duty! The flowers that graced the custom-built arbour during the ceremony were taken down and rearranged as the centerpiece on the head table.
In addition to a photographer, the couple elected to have Vancouver wedding-film company Hello Tomorrow capture their big day on tape. “Pictures offer a snapshot in time, but watching the video takes it to another level,” Janice says. “It’s like we get to relive each moment whenever we like.”