Frances & John Civil Ceremony

Ceremony & Reception: Rippon Lea Estate

December 2016

Frances and John met on a lucky and auspicious January 31st in 2014, which was also Chinese New Year day. Frances was scheduled to meet her girlfriends for a dinner date. Out of the blue, the Maid of Honour and Sister, Justine, invited herself along to dinner at the last minute AND asked Frances, “Can I bring a friend?” Frances just assumed Justine’s friend was female – and was surprised to see this handsome groom accompanying Justine. Everyone at the dinner got along with John well. When Frances excused herself from the table – Justine turned to John and said, “If you ever want to date my sister, I approve.”

Frances’ first impression of John that he was very nice, polite and soft-spoken. John immediately saw that Frances was a loving person with a big heart. The next day, Frances received a message from John, hoping she was well. Frances was touched and texted back and continued to meet and go out with John, with Justine in tow. However, there was one time where Justine wasn’t able to chaperone. Nevertheless, Frances and John chose to meet up anyway. Whether or not this is their first date remains a grey area because John rocked up wearing an orange polo, jeans and thongs.

Frances was surprisingly not put off by this thong wearing behaviour, so they continued to meet up without Justine. This progressed to John officially asking Frances out, although not with his own voice. Allow me to explain. Frances received a random call from John while she was at work one day, with John asking, ‘If you had a puppy that was white, what would you name it?’ Frances responded with ‘Sundae, because it’s white like ice cream.’ So, John headed toward this wonderful shop called Build a Bear. He ‘built’ Sundae the Puppy who is strawberry scented and has a button on his paw to be pressed to play a recorded message. They were in a bar catching up for a drink when John presented Frances with Sundae. Upon Frances pressing the paw, she heard the recorded message which said – “Genki (which means Hello in Japanese)! Today is the first day of Spring, where love blossoms with new beginnings. Will you be John’s girlfriend? He likes you lots.” A word of advice to the single gents out there today – step up your asking out game.

Fast forward to approximately two years later from when they first met, Frances and John travelled to Japan in January this year, with Best Man and John’s brother Tony. They were visiting Mount Fuji, and John’s surprise for Frances was to stay at this amazing ryokan which is a traditional Japanese inn. Frances thought that something special was going to happen the first night but nothing happened. Then on the second night, while Frances, John and Tony were having dinner in a private room, John excused himself to visit the restroom. When he left, the lights went out in the room. John bumped into the waiter in the hallway, carrying a candle-lit cake with a message that read ‘Will you marry me?’ as well as the engagement ring. John said to the waiter, “I really need to pee”. But the waiter argued back saying “No, no, no, we need to do this now! I’m really nervous too!” So John did a U-Turn and went straight back into the room, got down on one knee and proposed.

I have known and adored Frances since we met studying in Boston together on university exchange in 2011. Like John and from the very start of our friendship, I recognised her warmth, her big heart, and love for family and friends. I have always admired her intelligence, strength and poise, and I am so happy for her that she has met her match and the love of her life.

**All images here were taken by Red Butterfly Photography.


Photography: Tatiana @

Videography: Grandeur Films @


Bride - Julie Hui MUA @

Bridesmaids - Yen Nguyen @

Bride's Mothers - Farita Anderson @

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