Korea Travels: Part 1 – Weddings
Every trip to Korea has always been fun and exciting but this past trip was especially meaningful. I witnessed two of my dearest friends starting a new chapter of their lives with their lifelong partner. I would like to share some Korean wedding history and culture, along with two of my friend’s beautiful wedding photos!
Both weddings were set in modern wedding attire, and the traditional Korean Hanbok. Hanbok’s are still often used in Korean weddings, but the designs have been modernized and simplified to meet today’s style of fashion. Let’s take a look at some traditional Hanbok, Korean Weddings and Wedding Fashions.
Image Source: Left
The colorful patterns on the Hanbok are intricately sown in to the fabric. The patterns consist of Plants and Animals which signifies happiness. The abundance of the floral pattern is used to feminize the Hanbok. A lot of gold and silver is used to make the Hanbok extra fancy and beautiful for the special day.
Image Source: Right
Brides wear a lot of red and have red dots on their cheeks called YeonJi Gonji. Red is traditionally known to fight off the evil. Wearing Yeonji Gonji on their face signifies creating a pure environment for the wedding.
Most weddings in Korea are now done with white wedding dresses and a tuxedo as it is done in America, many people still keep the tradition of having a separate Korean ceremony, called Pae Beak. Pae Beak is held for the bride to show respect to her new In-Laws and for the In-Laws to welcome the bride as a new member of the groom’s family. Also, it is held to wish for the new couple’s happiness in marriage and to hope for many healthy children their future.
In Pae Beak, the new couple shows respect by bowing to the parents.
These are the traditional foods set at the wedding ceremony table. Jujube, Chestnut, Han Gwah (Rice puff snacks), Yak Gwah (flour honey patty snack), Jerky.
The parents throw Jujube and chestnut in wishing for many healthy children in their future. Jujube signifies a son and chestnut signifies a daughter.
The Bride and the Groom take “Love Shot” in promising their love and wishing happiness in their future together.
The Bride and the Groom do a Jujube Kiss! They put a Jujube in between their mouths and bite to split it in half. It is said that who ever takes the seed is going to have the upper hand in their marriage.
Then as wedding gift, the bride and the groom are given money in envelope!
Traditionally, Korean Weddings were held outdoors.
My trip to Korea took me to Gyunggi-Do city, to visit my friend. Yoojin and I have been friends since the 2nd grade. Although we were 7,000 miles apart, we never lost our friendship along the way. Although I was not able to attend her actual wedding, seeing their wedding photos and wedding video in their newlywed home setting was very emotional.
Now pronounce you Husband and Wife!; Location: Chung Dam Dong; Photography: On Dul E Pium / Ham Sa Yo
Let’s take a look at her two dresses above. Can you believe that they are all the same dress? The dress was coordinated with different bolero to create a new style and look; Location: Chung Dam Dong; Photography: On Dul E Pium / Ham Sa Yo
Bolero is a short cropped, cardigan-like garment, inspired by the matador’s Chaquetilla. Now they are commonly used in women’s fashion and they come in variety of short and long sleeves.
Beaauutiful! Photography: On Dul E Pium / Ham Sa Yo
This is the traditional Korean Wedding dress Han-Bok. They come in range of colors and styles. Photography: On Dul E Pium / Ham Sa Yo
This is an updated redesign of the Traditional Korean Hanbok. Photography: On Dul E Pium / Ham Sa Yo
Now to Bora’s Wedding!
Bora and I attended Pratt Institute together. I can honestly say we never left each other’s side during the time at Pratt. Long studio hours… and sleepless nights together… all day… and… all night!
Her wedding photo shoot was so beautiful! Although it started out with a panic due to the unexpected rain! It couldn’t have been more perfect and gorgeous!!
Picture Perfect; Location: Apgujeong; Photography: Lilium
Beautifully modern with a touch of classic flair. Location: Apgujeong; Photography: Lilium
Mr. and Mrs. in modern French provincial setting. Location: Apgujeong; Photography: Lilium
This picture turned out so amazing!!! and Yes… it was in the Rain! Location: Apgujeong; Photography: Lilium
And again, this is the Traditional Korean Hanbok. Doesn’t it feel so different in a softer color vs. Bold? Location: Apgujeong; Photography: Lilium
Dandadada! Now to their Wedding day!!
Location:Imperial Palace, Gangnam; Photography: Tasha Yoo
I think she was just a BITTT NERVOUS! Photography: SOULPAGE
In a Korean wedding, after being pronounced husband and wife they first bow to each other; than they bow to the parents and the guests. Photography: Tasha Yoo
Congratulations again to Yoojin and Bora!! and I wish them all the happiness in their future! <3 Thank you for reading!
Yoomi Miyahira was born in South Korea; throughout her life she has lived in Maui Hawaii, back in South Korea, New York, and currently in Atlanta Georgia. She loves being on the water and outdoors.