I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend! Today I have the sweetest celebration in store for you today from photographer Nancy Neil. Dararith and Sandy have to be one of the cutest couples we’ve ever featured and I’m thrilled about the opportunity to share their beautiful Cambodian wedding on Once Wed…

Upon deciding to get married after knowing each other for nineteen years, three things about our wedding became immediately clear:

1) A truly epic celebration was in order.

2) Details would reflect our love for: Handmade and vintage items (hello Etsy!), our friends and family, the environment, organic farming, art & design, all things plant and animal, and each other.

3) It would be big, phat, and Cambodian!

Cambodian (Khmer) weddings symbolize the legend of the origin of Cambodia and the marriage of the first Khmer prince, Preah Thong, to the naga princess, Neang Neak. The prince was a foreigner exiled from his homeland who, during his travels, fell in love with the naga princess.

Dararith and I were immediately struck with the parallel to his own life. He was born and raised in Cambodia, driven from his homeland, and met and fell in love with me during his travels. For this reason, to honor our family, and to pay tribute to Khmer culture, we embraced the tradition of a Cambodian ceremony filled with blessings, bling, and palm flowers.

Cambodian Bride

A Cambodian Wedding

Cambodian Wedding Attire

Cambodian Wedding Ceremony

Cambodian Wedding Prayer

Cambodian Wedding Confetti

Though traditional Khmer wedding ceremonies last three days and involve multiple ceremonies and costume changes, we decided to focus on the ones that were most important to us: Soat Mun (Monks’ Blessing), Sien Doan Taa (Call to Ancestors), Bongvul Phopul (Passing of Blessings), and Sompeas Ptem (Knot Tying Ceremony).

Stay tuned for Part II coming up next!

Photography by Nancy Neil


Comments (9)

Inessa Zherebnenko | Reply

beautiful and I love the traditional Cambodian dress

Patricia | Reply

Love the colours and the unique story!

Christina Brosnan | Reply

Oh yes I’m loving it!! Beautiful imagery!

Sokun | Reply

Beautiful wedding!! I am Cambodian and also immigrated to the US as a young child. I grew up attending these beautiful, elaborate “Khmer” weddings and they are so much fun. The costumes remind me of the beautiful weddings my family had over the years. Thanks for sharing!

Daniel | Reply

This is the most original wedding i have seen. Love it!!!

swiss | Reply

Wow beautiful wedding. I love the pictures, amazing photographs by Nancy N. You don’t see many Western – Cambodian weddings with the Western being the girl. She looks beautiful; it suits her! I love her red hair!

Samnang | Reply

How lovely! Like Sokun writes, I too immigrated to the US and am actually getting ready for my own wedding. I’m proud to keep the tradition alive.

Ryatt | Reply

Cambodian/Khmer Weddings are indeed full of colors and tradition.

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