Where the city meets the forest amongst the heart of Indonesia, Jeffrey & Carissa wed in an intimate and ethereal setting within the Hutan Kota. As a metaphor for longevity and an infinite kind of love, the symbolic nature of a circle was woven into every detail of the ceremony.
The couple swapped sentimental vows within a circular installation draped in lush greenery, witnessed by their loved ones. Complementing the luscious foliage that draped overhead, whispy dotted florals and moss-like mounds infused life into the glasshouse exterior. The enchanting setting paid tribute to Jeff’s family lineage as forestry sectors and will forever be engulfed in their memories.
A decadent closing to the day found the couple sharing cocktails amongst the highline of the city dusted in golden lights as they danced into their new chapter.
Capturing every detail of the enchanting soiree was Calia Photography.
Names / Carissa & Jeff
Wedding Date / October 9th, 2021
Guest Numbers / 50
How We Met
We met through work. Jeff was working on a project that needed a graphic designer and the agency that I was working for had paired us together.
Our Engagement Story
We had planned a trip to Japan for the proposal. We knew we were going to be engaged sometime during the trip but didn’t know how, when, and where the proposal was going to happen. Jeff had wanted it to be a surprise for both of us.
Jeff ended up proposing in front of Walter de Maria’s Time/Timeless/No Time. It was a space inside of the Chichu Art Museum where we were not allowed to speak or take any photographs. I was looking at the installation and when I turned around, he was kneeling with the cheekiest smile. I gave him thumbs up – and we were officially engaged.
Ever since then, we began developing an affinity to black, circular objects.
Marriage To Us Means…
It is the most beautiful form of partnership and an exciting way to start a new chapter in life. It is finding that one safe person to help navigate the many curveballs life throws at you.
We had our ceremony in Hutan Kota, which in English means ‘A Forest in the City’. The venue was a glasshouse surrounded by lush greenery in the middle of Jakarta’s central business district.
The wedding ceremony was a tribute to Jeff’s grandparents and a nod to his family business. His grandparents had migrated to Indonesia and made a living from the forestry sector. He wanted to gather the extended family to a place that represented and reminded them of our roots.
Due to the pandemic, we had chosen not to involve a wedding party. We had a calm and relaxed breakfast in the suite we had booked located near our venue. Soon after, my makeup artist, hairdo, wedding dress fitter came to help me prepare. Although we were preparing in the same room, I had told Jeff not to peek as I still wanted our photographer to capture that ‘first look’ moment.
Overall Style & Inspiration
The overall experience that we were going for was romantic, sophisticated, and intimate. We gave creative freedom to our wedding stylist to put it all together and design what would best suit our personality.
Our wedding stylist drew inspiration from our engagement story, daily lives, and background. She wanted to incorporate black and circular elements for the wedding day and further play with the forest theme.
Jeff had jokingly told our wedding stylist that he wanted the wedding to be ‘dark and moody’, which explains the smoke machine during the wedding ceremony!
The ceremony was held inside the glasshouse at Hutan Kota by Plataran. It is originally a restaurant and we had only around 12 hours to completely transform the place into a secluded forest. The floral arrangement was a rendition of a prairie garden, wispy and overgrown, with white as its main palette. The arrangements created a pathway that invites you into the center of the room where the altar is located atop of a circular platform.
A large circle ring was added as the altar backdrop with smoke emanating from around the sphere creating a tranquil and sacred ambiance. Grey pebbles inside a crystal chalice was used as our ring box. Around the altar, hundreds of candles were lit inside clear glass vases with varying heights.
I came across a picture of a circular sitting layout before we even booked the venue, and I knew immediately that this is the layout I wanted for our ceremony. I love how it provides a feeling of intimacy and I’m happy that we managed to implement this into our wedding day. Ghost chairs are used to create an illusion of a bigger and open space. Mist was slowly added to the room as the ceremony went on, to create an intimate moment leading up to the wedding kiss.
Due to the COVID-19 regulations during the time, we weren’t allowed to host a big reception. We even had to split the guests into smaller groups! Our immediate family and their guest had dinner on the porch of the glasshouse. While our friends moved to the rooftop of the building adjacent to our ceremony venue.
Our parents are into bonsai and to make it more personal for them and their guests, the long tables had bonsai arrangements as their centerpiece. As for ourselves, we ended the day with a sunset-rooftop cocktail party with our closest friends. The décor was minimal, as the rooftop was already surrounded by a magnificent view of Jakarta’s skyline.
Our photographer was Aldo from Calia Photography. When I came across Calia’s Instagram page, I was instantly drawn to their soft and romantic style. It had a timeless quality to it that we liked.
We were also not used to being in front of the camera, so it was important for us to find a photographer that was able to beautifully capture the candid moments of our big day.
Our videographer was Daru from Bare Odds. We had chosen them as we wanted our wedding video to not be overly cinematic. We had also noticed that they had refrained from using pop songs, which had made their portfolio seemingly more timeless.
I wore a custom dress with a detachable cape, beautifully designed by Devina and her amazing team from The Bridal Workshop.
I went for a classic mermaid silhouette with a sharp semi-sweetheart neckline. I picked a nude base that is paired with feather-like lacework, embellished with radiant glass and pearl beads. I decided to add a detachable cape for a more reserved look for the ceremony. I love how the lacework and beading details of my dress matched the floral arrangement on the day.
The shoes were a wedding gift from my maid-in-honor and my childhood friend. It was a pair of transparent low PVC pumps with crystal beads that matched my wedding dress.
We almost went ahead with not having any wedding rings at all! I had rarely worn any type of jewelry, so I thought it was natural to let go of the rings.
A week before the wedding, our parents managed to convince us of the symbolic importance of having a ring. We went ring shopping 2 days in a row and managed to find one that suits our style and was able to resize it just in time before our big day.
I wore a set of hairpieces by Olivia Marsha. It consisted of seven floral hairpins that could be rearranged during and after the ceremony.
Jeff wore a black tuxedo from Atham Tailor, it is a family-run business dating back to 1968. It is the same tailoring shop as the one Jeff’s father would go to get his suits made. He had chosen them as he wanted a classic yet modern cut.
Hair & Makeup
Soft glam. Neutral lips and defined eyes with a smooth complexion. I wore my hair down for the ceremony and put it on a low ponytail for the rooftop party.
Stationery & Invitations
Papeworks designed our invitation. I had always adored her work and was exciting to have her design our invites.
Our invites are printed on frosted white acrylic – inspired by our venue, the glasshouse. The envelope was designed with a system resembling a vinyl album and the circular element was present in a subtle way.
Flowers & Bouquets
Tea Rose Wedding took care of this for us. The flowers were carefully curated and handpicked by their team. She gave me three different types of bridal bouquets on the day and I ended up choosing the bouquet of white roses. It’s perfect! It provided a beautiful contrast to the raw and wispy arrangements installed at the venue.
Favors / Bonbonniere
A room diffuser by The Clementines.
We didn’t have a gift registry as it wasn’t in our culture to have one. However, we totally understand the importance of having one now as we had received three identical sets of blenders from our wedding guests!
Our entrance song was All The Bright Places II by Keegan DeWitt.
Food & Beverages
We were only able to serve bite-size canapes during our wedding due to the COVID-19 regulations. What was interesting was that our stylist suggested that the color of our canapes fit our color palette. No strawberries or tomatoes. Same with the cocktails, she had recommended mojitos and gin & tonics to match the glasshouse.
A Memorable Moment…
There were so many that it’s impossible to pick just one!
One Thing I Wish I Knew Before I Started My Wedding Plans…
Stress is inevitable. Be prepared.
If I Could Give Other Brides To Be One Piece Of Advice…
Trust. Trust your gut but also trust your vendors. In the end, it is a big collaboration between you and so many different parties. Trust that you are in good hands and not everything is in your control.
Photography / Calia Photography
Bride’s Dress / The Bridal Workshop
Bride’s Shoes / Staccato
Groom / Atham Tailor
Wedding Rings / Mondial
Hair / Ririe
Makeup / Lalanindita
Stationery & Invitations / Papeworks
Catering / Plataran Dining
Wedding Venue / Hutan Kota by Plataran
Entertainment / Lemon Tree Entertainment
Videographer / Bare Odds
Wedding Stylist / Tea Rose Wedding Designer
Celebrant / Alex of The Collective Jakarta
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