We were in Hong Kong last month to celebrate our first wedding anniversary (my, how time flies when you’re having fun!) but took a break from our usual itinerary of eating, walking, and more eating to meet Athena & Zam for a pre-wedding session in Wan Chai. Our location? The Blue House, a super-photogenic 1920s tenement on Stone Nullah Lane that blends Chinese and Western architectural elements. Although you can’t go inside it, it attracts quite a few tourists—in fact, one couple snapped photos all around it and then insisted on taking a photo with Athena!
But wait—what’s a pre-wedding session, you ask? Think of an engagement session, but with the bride all dolled up in her wedding gown and the groom in his snazziest suit. Oh, and the session lasts all day, if not several days. Pre-wedding sessions are popular in numerous Asian countries, including China, Taiwan, and Singapore; most include a hair and make-up artist, wardrobe stylist, and lavish rental outfits in addition to the photographer(s) and technical assistants. We saw quite a few crews working their magic around town and in Macau during our visit.
Although we didn’t have stylists or multiple extravagant gowns, we had a blast nonetheless. Athena and Zam did a terrific job styling themselves and Athena even busted out her super powers for the occasion (animated below)! It was truly a wonderful, memorable way to experience Hong Kong and meet two very special people. We hope you enjoy these still and moving images as much as we enjoyed making them.
Remember Mary and Henry and their most-excellent bridge-spotting engagement adventure? We caught up with them a few weeks later when they tied the knot at San Francisco City Hall, a stunning location if there ever was one. Although it was early Thursday morning, the place was bustling with other couples eager to get married. Only one judge was available to perform all the ceremonies that day, however, so appointments were soon pushed back. For us this meant one thing: more photos!
We adored Mary’s 1950s-style swing dress and poufy petticoat, and Henry’s snappy gray suit. We squealed when they broke out the signs they made to commemorate the occasion: ladybugs proclaiming “I do” and “Do I!” and giant Scrabble tiles spelling out “FINALLY!” for 13 points. We laughed when they strapped a plastic ball and chain to Henry’s ankle. Most of all, we loved photographing them interacting with the 22 family members and friends who joined them that day, even though technically only six guests (including photographers) are allowed to witness the ceremony.
In the end, they exchanged vows, they kissed, and everyone cheered. It might not have followed strict fairytale protocol, but there was definitely a Cinderella moment (animated below) and we hope Mary and Henry live happily ever after. Do we? We do!
Dress: Alika Circle dress (Bettie Page Clothing)
Bride’s shoes: Badgley Mischka
Suit: Tommy Hilfiger
Tie: Michael Kors
Groom’s shoes: Kenneth Cole
Rings: Partita Custom Design Jewelry
Flowers: Virginia Ho at S&V Collections
Ball & chain: Party City
Giant keys: Amazon