Real Weddings

The Modern-Meets-Romantic Wedding of a Stylish Philly Stationery Designer

She went *all* out on the paper goods, of course.


Stationery designer Ettie Kim’s FAME wedding in Kensington was a stylish blend of minimalism and romance. Photography by Du Soleil Photographie

We’ve talked to Philly wedding pros about their Big Day secrets in the past. And yet, we still find ourselves blissfully surprised by just how beautiful the events they throw — for themselves — can be. Wedding stationery and calligraphy expert Ettie Kim and her husband held their wedding at FAME. Photographed by Du Soleil Photographie, the minimalistic-yet-romantic celebration will leave you feeling inspired for your own wedding day.

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The moment Luke Kim, a physician, found himself outplayed by Ettie Kim during a fierce game of Scrabble at a mutual friend’s house, he knew he’d met his match. He “slid into her DMs” after watching an Instastory of her brewing coffee with a Chemex (pickup line: “Metal coffee filter! Nice!”), and it wasn’t long before they found themselves at Peddler Coffee in Fairmount on their first date.

Fifteen months later, both Scrabble and coffee played a role in Luke’s proposal. A faux dinner date brought Ettie back to Peddler, where Luke had hung giant Scrabble tiles spelling out I LOVE YOU. As soon as Ettie said the magic word, friends and family popped out of their hiding places holding more tiles that read SHE SAID YES.

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Ten months later, the couple made things official at FAME with a wedding inspired by “the juxtaposition between the mechanical and the organic.” The bride, a graphic designer, created all the paper goods, including the playful posters held by their youngest attendants. “During the ceremony, we had our ring bearer and flower girl walk down the aisle with signs of ‘Lettie’ [for “Luke” plus “Ettie”] and ‘Set,’” explains Luke. “Then Ettie’s nephew rolled down in a remote-control car with the final sign of ‘Go!’” She added an organic touch to their stationery with calligraphy, gold foil and muslin.

Ettie posed for rooftop portraits in a leather jacket adorned with the date of the celebration. “I chose Roman numerals because I wanted to wear the jacket after the wedding,” she says. At the ceremony, the altar backdrop was a “something borrowed” for the couple. Made of PVC pipe coated with copper paint, the frame had been passed from friend to friend for numerous weddings.

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FAME wedding ceremony

The couple eschewed rentals in favor of lounge furniture already at the venue. Florist Caroline Park surrounded the scene with lush green installations. Luke worked with Eventions to create a twinkle-light installation over the reception hall. “We thought it would be a great way to warm up the space,” says Ettie. Tables were marked with numbers encircled by the bride’s hand-drawn botanical illustrations. The couple greeted guests wearing traditional hanboks picked up by Luke’s mom in Korea. The custom neon sign from Brite Lite Tribe is now hanging in their home in East Falls. 

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A cocktail hour featuring Peking duck buns, spring rolls, sushi and a taco bar gave way to a dinner of charred culotte of beef and pan-seared bass. For dessert, there was Weckerly’s ice cream and — of course — a pop-up coffee station. The home office of Càphê Roasters happens to be a few floors below FAME, and at the end of the night, baristas served Vietnamese coffee, pour-overs and sparkling citron tea from a pop-up bar near the DJ station. Luke and Ettie’s red velvet cake with cream cheese icing was decorated with ivory ranunculus and roses.

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The most meaningful moment for the couple was watching their mothers light unity candles as a symbol of their newly joined families and then thanking their teary-eyed parents for raising them. “I’ll remember seeing my father cry for the rest of my life,” says Luke.

THE DETAILS
Venue: Feast at MaKen (FAME) | Photographer: Du Soleil Photographie | Catering & Cake: Feast Your Eyes Catering | Bride’s Gown: Jenny Yoo from BHLDN | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Mango | Hair & Bridesmaids’ Makeup: The Jekyll and Hyde Co. | Groom’s Attire: The Black Tux | Rings: L. Priori Jewelry | Music: Remixologists | Lighting: Eventions | Stationery & Signage: Ettie Kim Studio | Coffee: Càphê Roasters | Ice Cream: Weckerly’s

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