SOCIAL MEDIA

06 March 2016

A Wedding in Malaysia

This weekend was Issabelle and Daniel's wedding ceremony and reception. Regular readers may remember that I posted about attending their legal marriage registration in August, and promised to post about the wedding ceremony later on. The big day finally came!

Sarah was a flower girl for their church ceremony, which meant that she was really excited about getting dressed up--we took extra care with her hair and dress and got to the church early to make sure she could line up to walk the aisle when she needed to.


(Credit for this photo goes to the wedding photographer--the girls were so lovely I had to share it!)

The church service was in Tamil and English--since the wedding was held at a Tamil church, but there were a number of non-Tamil speakers present. Tamil is one of the only languages that I have had a good amount of exposure to and still haven't managed to learn more than about two words. Much of the audience sang along enthusiastically during the worship songs, but I couldn't fit my tongue around the words on the screen.



Little Josh was sleepy and MaryGrace was a trooper, keeping him calm for a long portion of the service.

The pastor preached an 8-point sermon of marriage advice. His impressions of how NOT to talk to your husband or wife were pretty funny (and quite familiar-sounding, as well!).



Once the ceremony was over, it was time for everyone to head home as there was only a few hours till the reception began. Nearly everyone changed clothes before the reception--red being a popular color of choice for the night, since it's the bride's favorite color, as well as a lucky color according to her Chinese heritage.

 

Wedding photo shoots--elaborate, multi-outfit and multi-location photo shoots that take place months before the wedding, are the norm for bridal couples here. There are a number of bridal studios in our town that offer clothing rental, hair and make-up, as well as photography, editing, and printing services for these photos. Issabelle and Daniel had one larger-than-life poster from their session at the reception, along with several albums.


 I always think these ultra-glamorous photos are so fun and I always say that Angel and I will get some taken one of these years. Maybe this will be the year? I think I would just wear my own wedding dress, though, since I'm partial to my own clothes and the memories they have with them over rented (but admittedly gorgeous!) clothing.

Another tradition we've seen at a number of wedding receptions is this cake in the front of the room:


Which is usually a plastic or plaster model. In fact, if you want some delicious cake, you have to recognize that individual pieces are served in these adorable boxes stacked in a pyramid at the back of the room. Those with a sweet tooth may or may not have been grabbing them before the bride and groom even arrived.




Weddings are the best time to get photos with everybody all dressed up in their best, so this is all the little girls with the bride's younger brother-we've known him since he was 5 years old--he's so grown up now!


With the mother of the bride. And, below, with the bride's older sister...acting just like sisters...


 (They are paging through one of the wedding albums)


An integral part of the reception is the toast "Yam Seng" (Also spelled "Yum Seng", although the spelling "Yom Seng" would probably be closer to the actual pronunciation for my American readers). When you toast this, you have to yell "Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaam Seng!" and hold the "yam" until you run out of breath or even longer. We repeated the toast three times. This was one tradition that was carried over to my own wedding in the USA.

I didn't get any pictures of the food, but it was Indian food-rice and curries. One buffet was vegetarian and the other had mutton and chicken. You may notice Rebekah's hand in her food--there were spoons and forks available, but many people prefer to eat rice and curry and food of this type with their right hand instead. I don't...because I'm left-handed.


By the way, this was the first wedding dinner we've ever attended together. By and large, our friends either don't get married, don't have wedding dinners, or get married in countries that we don't live in. So this wedding reception was a first for us!


Congratulations Issabelle and Daniel!

When's the last time you've been to a wedding dinner? Have you ever been to a wedding in a country other than your native country?

27 comments :

  1. This wedding looks like so much fun! I love hearing about wedding traditions in other countries-thanks for sharing! That's really interesting about the wedding photo shoots. I've had bunches of friends here in the States do "engagement photos;" do you think it's a similar thing? I don't think it's quite that glamorous over here, though (we didn't even have any done)-that poster is amazing and so huge! Wow! I think that the Yam Seng tradition sounds pretty fabulous and fun :) I've never been to a wedding in another country, but it sounds like such a cool experience! It's been probably about a year and a half since I've been to a wedding; a few summers ago we had three weddings in two weekends! Two of those involved a wedding dinner, and one was an afternoon reception followed by dinner. It's always fun to see the different ways that people celebrate!

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  2. That looks fun! I've been in an Indian wedding (in North America) that was pretty cool! I have two friends getting married this year, one will be a very low-key causal wedding and the other a very snazzy, arty-farty wedding! My husband and I planned to get married in the Dominican (where he's from) but we ended up eloping spur of the moment like teenagers and it never happened!

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  3. This looks like so much fun, and so colorful! I love the boxes of cake!

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  4. I love everything about it, including the color and the cake boxes! It's so unique! The closest thing to the photo shoots here would be a bridal shoot, but it's always just the bride, never both of them!

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  5. Beautiful photos! I actually might be traveling to Malaysia with my counseling grad cohort next January!

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  6. Very beautiful, colorful, and happy pictures. I love being exposed to other cultures!

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  7. That looks so fun! I've been to interracial weddings where some traditions were incorporated from both sides (Indian/American), but never one overseas. I think it would be really cool!

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  8. I love hearing about different wedding traditions. Looksl ike ufn.

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  9. Looks like so much fun! My sister in-law is from Malaysia so I'll have to send her this link!

    Greta | www.gretahollar.com

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  10. So beautiful! I love all of the colors, traditions, and beauty that other cultures have in their weddings. I love hearing about the differences between an American wedding and other cultures. Thank you for sharing.

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  11. How fun! I love reading about traditions in other cultures. Looks like you all had a blast!

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  12. What a beautiful and fun wedding! I love learning about different wedding traditions.

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  13. Wonderful wedding post! I loved the photos. It's always amazing to watch beautiful women all dolled up for a wedding! :)

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  14. This looks like SO much fun! I love hearing about how other people (both near and far) celebrate their marriages. I love the tradition of changing into a red dress--the bride's reception dress was adorable. It looks as if you had a great time. :)

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  15. Absolutely beautiful. The photographs are beautiful. So interesting learning about different traditions.

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  16. Wow what a fun wedding! It's so cool to hear about other traditions and customs.

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  17. Fun! Looks like you guys had a great time!

    I loved attending weddings in China! They were definitely different than in the States, but I loved the feasting that took place. And everyone wearing so much red! :)

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  18. That's so fun! Wow this was your first wedding together - that's awesome :) My friend is from Bangladesh and I definitely am accustomed to seeing people eat with their right hand.. It's interesting but I've read from multiple sources that food is better enjoyed and more satisfying when eaten in such a manner. I'll stick to my fork because.. like you.. I'm a leftie. I think we're more special because of that. Lefties forever! Take Care Rachel -Iva

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  19. I'm incredibly jealous! I Would love the opportunity to attend a wedding in a different country or for individuals from a differt culture/religion. I love hearing about different traditions!

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  20. So fun!

    I think it is an Asian thing in general to do the pre-wedding pictures in rental clothes. They did that in Korea and also in Myanmar. In Myanmar, they don't even look like themselves because they are so photo shopped. It's bizarre.

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  21. I love weddings held in different traditions! This looks so exciting

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  22. wow what a gorgeous wedding! i absolutely love hearing about other wedding traditions and those are some seriously large photos! do you think they keep them? :)

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  23. Looks like it was such a gorgeous wedding, what a fun experience!! I absolutely love Malaysia, I'm heading back there this fall to travel around a bit as I've only really seen Kuala Lumpur.

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  24. Glad you got to attend together. I've been to a few weddings by myself (Phillip couldn't come) and it was definitely not as fun.

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  25. This is SUCH a gorgeous wedding. Wow... I'm in awe of some of these elements, but mostly of the candid shots of love that you captured. One of my best friends just moved to Taiwan to live with her (now) fiance... and they will be tying the knot there soon. I'm glad they are coming back for an American wedding here too though! :) XO - Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

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  26. What a beautiful wedding! I love reading about weddings in different countries and how they all differ. We got to attend one in Rwanda and it was such a great experience. Also, Sarah looks so proud in her beautiful dress!

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