Lela + Tomas | Traditional Laotian Wedding | San Ramon, CA

“Euy” is a Lao word that means, “Big sister.” When you call someone who is not related to you by blood, Euy, it is a sign of respect to that person. When I first met the mother of the bride, La, over a decade ago, I had so much respect and admiration for her due to her philanthropic work with the Jai Lao Foundation.  With La’s kind and inviting heart, I immediately regarded her as my Euy, my big sister. Over the years, I’ve watched her inspire others, especially the Laotian community with her generosity and promoting Lao culture through her love of Lao food. I’ve also been able to watch her kids grow up through social media and even had the honor of photographing their family a couple of times. I was so honored and excited to be chosen and invited to document one of her kids’ most special days. Lela and Tomas’ Laotian-inspired wedding took place in the backyard of Lela’s childhood home in San Ramon, CA. La, who helped organize and plan this wedding, wanted to celebrate their Lao heritage and traditions by showcasing it through the details and intricacies of the wedding from the Laotian attire to the elaborate food displays.  The wedding was immersed in Lao details but nothing screamed louder than the love that I captured in the pictures between Lela and Tomas and the warm support of that love from their family and friends. Please enjoy these set of photos and let me know what you think! 

Wedding photographer: ARI SIMPHOUKHAM PHOTOGRAPHY
Videography: @mokphotoandfilms
Coordinator: Gina Wong
DJ & Lighting: DJ Shant
Florist: Sachi Florist
Photo Booth: Pix Co
Rentals: AM Rentals
Cake: Gina Veazy
Fruit Carving: Chanh Leo & Friends
Buffet Tablescape: Annee Lund
Papaya Salad Station: Lin & Pom
BBQ Grill: Tali
Pho Station: Mommy & Melissa
Kanom Koke Station: Annee & Mary
Beverage Bar: Daddy
Seafood Boat: Tongan Family
Lao Food & Desserts: Various Lao Home Cooks
Kitchen Coordinator: Joy Chai
Reception Crew: Friends of Bride’s Mommy
Suit:  @perfectlysuited
Dress: @pritchettbridal
Lao Cultural Attire: Mouky Psa & Bellamy Phongmany
MUA and Hair Stylist: @josieee_p
Performances by @chinaly, Jasmine & Vika

The mother of the bride, La, doing her best not to cry. This Lao baci ceremony was very special to her because she’s very proud to be able to celebrate her culture and give her daughter a wedding she always dreamed of. Lela is first of her kids to get married. It’s a beautiful thing.

Tomas is Colombian and Lela is Lao. Tomas paid homage to both their heritage with custom cufflinks of both countries map.

The flower boy was so cute, one of the guest just had to pinch his cheeks. I’m not sure he liked it though.

I was able to capture one tear drop just beginning to form on Tomas. There were no dry eyes during their ring ceremony.

A surprise performance by their Tonga family from Alaska. 

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