Along with her traditional Catholic American wedding, Addy Lee wanted a traditional Korean wedding ceremony "Pae Baek". So during their reception, in front of her family and guests, Addy and her new husband Michael honored their parents and family members in a bowing ceremony. They also caught dates and enjoyed another Korean tradition, the piggy back ride. To understand the Traditional Korean Wedding - take a look at the program Addy made for her wedding guests - to help them follow along. Available for you below. All flowers were designed and made be Addy.
Wedding Customs" Article by: Shu Shu Costa from the feature
entitled: "Rituals of Bliss"
Like the Chinese, Koreans also exchanged
the "eight characters" or "four pillars" to
determine if the match was suitable. When that process was over,
a local fortune-teller was summoned to see if the couple could live
harmoniously. Koreans call this kung-hap. This custom is
still important among many older Korean Americans. As the old saying
goes, straw sandals are useful only if they fit your feet.
Gifts are an important part of an engagement.
Traditionally, gifts from the groom's side would be delivered on
the eve of the wedding day. With faces blackened with dried squid's
ink and in costume, friends of the groom would parade a box, or
hahm, filled with gifts. As they approached the bride's house, they
would chant, "Hahm for sale, buy a hahm."
Her family would rush out to greet the gift-bearers, enticing them
with money and food. These days, the families are likely to meet
in a restaurant, but gifts--and lots of them--are a must. Some Korean
American families can spend $30,000 to $40,000 on engagement gifts
The Wedding Outfits
The two dresses worn by the bride were once
the costume of the noble class. The simple lime-green wonsam and
the more elaborate hwarrot, or "flower robe,"
are embroidered with flowers and butterflies. Underneath, she wears
the hanbok, the doll-like traditional dress of Korea. On
the bride's head is a black cap studded with gems. On her feet are
white socks and embroidered shoes. Her makeup is simple, except
for three red circles, yonji konji, the size of nickels.
These circles, traditionally made of red peppers, but now often
drawn on, are supposed to ward off evil spirits. The groom's
faruotsu is also the dress of the nobility. It is made of dark
green damask with auspicious symbols woven in gold. The headdress
is the tall black cap of high-ranking officials made of silk. Traditional
costumes can be rented in Korean dress shops or even some banquet
halls starting around $150.
Traditionally, the groom would give a live
goose--a symbol of fidelity because it takes only one partner in
its life--to his new mother-in-law as a sign of his faithfulness
to her daughter. Today's Korean families substitute the live goose
with a wooden one called a kirogi. The ceremony takes place
around a table, or teresan, in an area set off by a screen
with images of peonies. The highlight of the ceremony is the sharing
of a special white wine called jung jong. Traditionally,
this wine was poured into cups made from two halves of a gourd grown
by the bride's mother. The bride and groom sip from their separate
cups and then the wine is mixed together, poured once more into
the gourd cups and sipped again. This is kunbere, the wedding vow.
One ritual often seen at Korean American weddings is the peh
beck ceremony. At this ceremony, usually only attended by
family and close friends, the new wife offers her new in-laws gifts
of dried dates and jujubes, symbols of children. They in
turn offer her tea, a subtle but significant gift. At the ceremony's
conclusion, they toss the dates and chestnuts at the bride, and
she tries to catch them in her large skirt.
The Korean wedding banquet is called kook
soo sang, the "noodle banquet," and can include a
variety of dishes to suit the season. It begins with a toast of
jung jong, a sort of Korean sake, downed quickly like a
shot. The highlight is the meal's namesake, a noodle soup called
kook soo. Wheat noodles are boiled and added to a clear
beef broth, garnished with vegetables and eggs. Here, as in China,
noodles are a wish for a long and happy life. Wedding desserts often
include dok, a sticky rice cake that comes in a number of forms--sweetened,
filled with bean paste, dotted with sesame seeds. Another popular
dessert is yak shik, a sticky rice ball sweetened with brown sugar
and speckled with chestnuts, jujubes, raisins and pine nuts, symbols