Bau-Tram and Tuan first met at an entrepreneurship workshop at a Vietnamese Leadership Conference in Washington, D.C., in July of 2011. Two years later, they ran into each other again in the parking lot of a shopping center in Falls Church, Virginia, when Bau-Tram, who goes by BT, arrived with a mutual friend. Tuan took the opportunity to join them at a nearby restaurant and, this time, he made sure to get BT’s number. The couple lived together for two years in Baltimore, Maryland before moving to Seattle, Washington in 2019.
In September of that year, Tuan took BT for a walk through Seward Park in South Seattle, where he set up a camera and asked her to pose for a picture. The camera was actually recording a video though, and full of tears, he got down on one knee to propose to BT. She happily said yes and the couple celebrated with more photos.
BT and Tuan envisioned inviting 160 guests to an outdoor wedding celebration surrounded by the beauty of the pacific Northwest. They fell in love with the lush gardens and wooded ceremony space at Twin Willow Gardens in Snohomish, Washington. In 2021, BT started her floral business, Emerald City Flowers, so the wedding décor was floral-heavy. “We wanted a wedding that represented our shared values and interests including inclusivity, hospitality, good food, and a beautiful ambiance filled with flowers,” BT says. “I chose Events By Genevieve and Janet Lin Photography because of their expertise in fine art weddings that have a romantic and timeless quality.”
Bau-Tram and Tuan sent guests a custom invitation suite by Creative by Sofiya with letterpress printing on hand-made paper. The suite included an illustrated map of the Snohomish area, the wooded ceremony site at Twin Willow Gardens, and watercolor envelope liners.
Before the ceremony, BT and her bridal party had their hair and makeup done and shared a Champagne toast. The bride gifted her bridesmaids robes from Robed With Love to wear while getting ready. BT requested a soft glam beauty look using her MAC lipstick in Velvet Teddy so she could reapply it throughout the day. After a few hair trials, the bride-to-be found the perfect looks for each part of the wedding. “I stuck with a middle hair part, started out with my hair down for the ceremony with loose curls and did a hair flip during cocktail hour for a classic bun for the reception,” she says.
As for her wedding dress, BT went to six bridal boutiques before deciding on a fitted mermaid Berta gown with hand sewn beading and a long train. “My Berta wedding dress checked off all the things I was looking for: form-fitting silhouette, backless, and intricate details,” she says, “While it is a small detail, I loved the playful velvet bow around my waist.” She paired her gown with Jimmy Choo shoes and diamond and pearl drop earrings from Costco. “They just happened to have the perfect pair of earrings that I was looking for at an amazing price and quality!” BT says.
Her bridal bouquet included honey dijon roses, quicksand roses, white David Austin garden roses, Cafe Latte roses, cappuccino roses, peonies, white stock, and ranunculus.
Tuan wore a classic black tuxedo with peak lapels from Suit Supply paired with a black bowtie, onyx cufflinks, and patent leather shoes. His boutonnière featured Sahara spray roses, hellebore, white lisianthus, and olive trig. Early on in their relationship, BT and Tuan sent handwritten letters back and forth to each other, so it was important to them that they write their own vows, but with wedding planning, work, and executing flowers for clients’ events, they both ended up penning their messages that morning. “I spent the morning of our wedding writing everything down because I knew I would break out into tears as soon as I looked into BT’s eyes—and I did,” Tuan says. “It took me three tries to get past my first sentence which was simply ‘BT, I love you’ because I kept choking and tearing up.”
Even though BT and Tuan spent the morning of their wedding setting up flowers side-by-side, they wanted a private moment together before the ceremony. “We did a first look because we felt like it was the only time that we would be able to appreciate and see one another before the craziness of our wedding started,” the bride says. The tears came for Tuan even before he saw his bride.
BT and Tuan each had eight bridesmaids and groomsmen in their wedding parties. The bridal party wore satin dresses from BHLDN in shades of champagne and oyster. “The two colors are very similar and complemented each other well. I wanted the dresses to be an elegant and classic color,” BT says. The groomsmen matched Tuan in classic black tuxes and Tuan created boutonnieres for them. The couple’s flower girls wore white ankle length dresses with tulle skirts and pearl buttons down the back.
The couple’s outdoor ceremony took place among mature cedar, hemlock, and maple trees. Two large all-white floral arrangements were set up on pedestals at the aisle entrance and three vintage light pendants hung from the arbor. “We intentionally left the ceremony arbor more plain to draw attention to us as a couple in the middle,” BT says. Over 500 white and cream colored David Austin garden roses arranged with huckleberry, hydrangea, olive branches, and white larkspur were arranged down the length of the aisle, and the white aisle was covered in white flower petals. “Originally, we were going to do a neutral blush pink and earth tones color palette for all our wedding flowers but at the last minute decided to do white florals for the ceremony space to provide a more significant transition moment between the ceremony and reception,” BT says, “I figured that I am the florist and can do whatever I want with the flowers!”
As the ceremony began, Tuan entered with his parents to Ryuchi Sakamoto’s “Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence”. Then, the wedding party walked down the aisle to Kina Grannis’s version of “Can’t Help Falling in Love”. BT was accompanied by her father, Hieu Do, as she walked down the aisle to Yiruma’s “River Flows In You”. The couple enlisted their friend, Hai Ton, to officiate their ceremony. Tuan read the vows he wrote that morning, while BT came up with her vows on the spot. “They were playful, genuine, and heartfelt,” Tuan says.
After the ceremony, BT and Tuan stepped away with their photographer to take portraits around the venue. They rented a vintage porsche and enlisted help from Urban Plant Shop to decorate it with a vibrant floral installation of playa blanca, quicksand, and toffee roses.
Guests enjoyed entertainment by jazz vocalist Chris Anderson during the cocktail hour. “Throughout our time planning our wedding, I kept telling BT how amazing it would be to have live jazz music playing during cocktail hour,” Tuan says, “It wasn’t until two weeks before our wedding that I stumbled upon Chris at the Seattle Bride Magazine awards ceremony.” Luckily, Chris was available for the couple’s wedding day and they were able to lock him in for the cocktail hour. They served two signature cocktails; a spicy mango margarita and a blackberry whiskey lemonade. The couple framed special photos and fun facts about them and their wedding day around the space, like the fact that the main course for dinner was inspired by a paella cooking course they took together in Spain and the fact that they used over 3,000 roses at the wedding. BT and Tuan playfully used the hashtag #CoupleofFlowers as an ode to their joy of working on flowers together with BT’s business, Emerald City Flowers.
The couple’s reception took place beneath a tent where smilax vine-wrapped chandeliers hung from the ceiling. They selected white floor length linens for the guest tables and an ivory textured linen for the sweetheart table. The centerpieces were arranged as floral runners for the rectangular tables and were set up on tall gold stands for the round tables and included honey dijon roses, quicksand roses, peach ranunculus, peonies, cappuccino roses, lisianthus, raspberry and blueberry branches, garden moss, and mint leaves for fragrance.
Textured place settings with ornate plates, gold utensils, custom menus, and taupe napkins were topped with wrapped boxes of local Fran’s Chocolates that were given out as wedding favors. On the rectangular tables, the napkins were folded, while on the round tables, they were knotted.
The couple hired On The Wall Design Studio to create a custom seating chart that read “Bloom Where You Are Planted,” Guests found their names and table numbers on glass cloches with flower arrangements inside.
BT changed into an ivory Vietnamese ao dai from Thai Nguyen (a host on Netflix’s Say I Do!) with floral beaded lace, silk pants, and ruffle sleeves for the reception. “Walking into the boutique of a celebrity designer like Thai Nguyen and knowing I was going to have the opportunity to work one-on-one with him to create an element that held so much cultural importance for my wedding day was certainly a highlight of the wedding planning experience,” BT says. “He listened to my preferences and then created a custom, one-of-a-kind piece that was beyond my wildest expectations.”
She paired her ao dai with a traditional Vietnamese headpiece.
BT and Tuan are foodies, so instead of hiring just one caterer, they decided to bring in their favorite chefs and caterers for a custom menu made up of sushi appetizers, Spanish paella as the main course, ice cream and cake for dessert, and a late-night snack of Taiwanese popcorn chicken. They even served boba tea with custom labels with their dog, Henny, illustrated on them.
Their lemon wedding cake had blackberry filling and featured a matte beige fondant design with torn edges to mimic the color and texture of the hand-made paper seen in the couple’s wedding invitations. The cake was embellished with hand-painted details and sugar flowers inspired by the David Austin roses seen throughout the wedding, along with ranunculus, spray roses, hydrangea buds, and blush peonies.
At the end of the evening, BT changed into her third and final look of the day—a blush pink BCBG Max Azria dress with a tulle layered skirt. She wore the dress for the couple’s engagement photos and loved how it was photographed. “I wanted to wear something comfortable for our first dance and decided to rewear my blush pink BCBG Max Azria dress which had fun tulle pieces that would lift up as I swirled around,” she says.
Tuan also went for a different look, changing into a white suit jacket. The newlyweds shared their first dance to “At My Worst” by Pink Sweat$ ft. Kehlani. BT danced with her father to Celine Dion’s “Because You Loved Me” and Tuan danced with his mother to “God Must Have Spent A Little More Time on You” by NSYNC. “Given that father-daughter and mother-son dances stem from more American traditions, Tuan and I briefed our parents on the idea, told them we would keep the songs short, and practiced simple dance moves to make them feel comfortable,” BT says.
The couple concluded the festivities with a sparkler sendoff. They spent their honeymoon in London and Paris. To couples planning a wedding, BT and Tuan say, “DIY is hard—even for professionals in the wedding industry. Doing the flowers for our wedding as florists worked out for us but we wondered if we would have enjoyed having more time with our loved ones leading up to the wedding. Trust your vendors to do what they do best—it results in a better and more creative outcome.”