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Bomi and Billy
There’s only one thing better than a heartfelt proposal: two of them. The first time Billy Choi proposed to Bomi Jin, in 2010, he planned a romantic picnic on New York City’s Governors Island, presenting her with a simple heart-shaped ring. It was all the struggling young dental student could afford to give his girlfriend of three years. (The pair met as undergrads at the University of Washington in Seattle, and both eventually moved to New York.) Then, in 2013, as they kicked off their planning with an engagement portrait session, Billy, now a dentist, surprised Bomi, a graphic designer for Nickelodeon, with the diamond sparkler he had always envisioned.
Bomi had a vision of her own—not of the ring, but for the wedding. She pictured something “classic and elegant, with vintage touches.” Thornewood Castle, a four-acre private estate 42 miles south of Seattle, checked all the right boxes and then some. “We loved the garden and that we could have the reception by the lake at sunset,” says Bomi. “But we also really liked that it had its own love story.” In 1907, Port of Tacoma founder Chester Thorne purchased the 400-year-old manor in England and had it brought over by ship, brick by brick, as a gift for his own bride.
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For the event to be held on August 13, 2013, Bomi created the letterpressed suite with friend and graphic designer Sebit Min.
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The Bridal Bouquet
Garden roses, ranunculus, and blushing bride proteas kept the bouquet “a little bit wild,” Bomi says. The arrangement, as well as the other floral elements, was dreamed up and created by McKenzie Powell.
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In the venue’s sunken English garden, Bomi and Billy exchanged self-penned vows in front of 125 guests.
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For the outdoor ceremony, McKenzie Powell created a pretty focal point by covering the sunken garden’s decorative arch in peach and cream garden roses and dahlias.
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The bride and groom, each of whom spent their childhood in South Korea before moving to the Pacific Northwest with their families, followed the Korean tradition of bowing to their parents in thanks. They also bowed to show their commitment and love.
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Fun for All
An oversize chess set entertained the groom’s cousins during the party.
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The lakefront reception’s rustic wood head table featured romantic flowers and votive candles. The festivities continued on the lawn, where, after a meal of wild salmon and grilled sirloin, a jazz band played Nat King Cole’s “For Sentimental Reasons” for the first dance.
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Centerpieces of garden roses and café au lait dahlias reflected the reception’s soft, neutral palette.
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The Wedding Cake
This buttercream-frosted confection included layers of strawberry shortcake, tiramisu, and lavender-infused cake with lemon creme and lemon curd.
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Basking in the perfect weather of their late-summer wedding, Bomi and Billy stole a kiss in the fairy-tale-like lush gardens of Thornewood Castle.
“We chose our photographer first, because we knew we wanted beautiful pictures to look back on for years to come,” Billy says.
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Location: Thornewood Castle
Floral and Event Design: McKenzie Powell
Catering: Ravishing Radish Catering
Photography: KT Merry
Videography: Aaron Horton Productions
Stationery Letterpress Printing: Sebit Min
Calligraphy: Kelle McCarter of Designsgirl
Music: [ceremony] The Seattle String Quartet; [reception] Proof Jazz
Rentals: ABC Rentals
Hair and Makeup: Salon Uni (206-338-9998)
Bride’s Gown: Romona Keveza
Accessories: [shoes] Jimmy Choo; [jewelry] Tiffany & Co.
Bridesmaids’ Dresses: J.Crew
Groom’s Suit: J.Crew
Groom’s Shoes: Salvatore Ferragamo