Why it took more than a decade for college friends Kim José and Ian Surage to walk down the hall

The first time Kim José crossed paths with him in college, Ian Surage was concentrating on his ping pong game. When Jose grabbed an oar to confront their mutual friend, Surage was enraged.

“I was a little upset,” he recalls. “I really didn’t know who she was, entering our game. She was very loud. “It would be 12 years before the couple, who are now 30, said” Yes, I do, “even though Surage knew he would marry her before they started dating.

The Scarborough students at the University of Toronto struck up a friendship, and Surage eventually asked Jose to come see the Pixar classic “Up.” with the. “I had no idea it was more than a friendly hangout,” says José. “It was very innocent.”

Despite that early flirtation, it would be years before Jose, a brand and marketing manager, and Surage, an advertising account manager, began formally dating. It was important to Joseph that his parents approve, so once Surage invited her and her parents to dinner, for a moment alone with them, he asked for their blessing.

“We were both quite nervous,” recalls José.

Surage agrees: “It was almost as if we were courting back in time.”

Family continued to be a driving force for the couple. When they traveled to the Philippines in November 2019 To visit Jose’s family, Surage planned to propose to Jose in a waterfall he loved when he was a child but had a spontaneous change of heart.

A reluctant karaoke singer, he surprised her during a joint birthday party with his mother by requesting that Jose duet with him on Lionel Richie’s “Stuck on You.” “That’s the song I sing in the shower,” he says, “so I’m familiar with it and I knew it wouldn’t spoil the words.”

Jose and Surage cut the cake on Commissioner Drake.

After singing the final notes, Surage took out an engagement ring. “He was asking me to marry him in a very low voice,” José recalls. “I couldn’t even understand what he was saying. He pulled out this ring and I assumed he was proposing it. I said yes, and then I slapped him across the face. I was so surprised, like, what are you doing? But it was so cute. ”

When it came to planning their wedding, they knew they wanted to have it on their first date anniversary, July 24. In 2021, it fell on a Saturday, so it was the perfect choice.

When COVID-19 hit, they didn’t care at first. After all, their wedding date was still over a year away. But how is approached, the pandemic continued to rage.

The couple created several guest lists, from a 250-person best-case scenario to a 10-person immediate family group. Fortunately, restrictions in Ontario were lifted to allow indoor gatherings of 50 people just a week before their date.

In the end, 46 guests confirmed their attendance at the Toronto wedding. José found her wedding dress at the Ferré Sposa boutique in Toronto and, for the reception, she wore a modern version of the traditional Filipino dress by local designer Jillian Joy.

She had originally thought of paying tribute to her late father by making a dress out of her clothes, only for her mother to dissuade her. Instead, he opted to wear his favorite dress shirt while getting ready.

Little did she know that Surage had a surprise up her sleeve. On the wedding day, he gave her a tie for her bouquet with her father’s photo on it. “I wanted him to feel like my dad was there, walking with me down the hall,” says José.

The couple have fun in Drake Commissary's photo booth.

That wasn’t the only surprise of the day. When José arrived for his hair appointment, she requested that her long locks be tied up in a braid. But as she sat in the chair and anxiously scrolled through Instagram, she saw a wavy mane with bangs.

“Next time I’m here, I want us to cut our hair this short with bangs,” she told stylist Diana Lee. “Well why don’t we cut it today?” Lee replied.

Surage couldn’t take her eyes off her girlfriend, and her brand new bangs, as she walked down the aisle. “I was trying to find out if it was Kim!” he says.

Since their Catholic service did not allow for personalized vows, they stole a quiet moment at the brunch reception at Commissioner Drake. “It was the first time during the day that it was just me and Kim,” says Surage. “I was holding back the tears, but I got over it.”

“I wanted to look Ian in the eye and tell him how grateful I was that we were finally husband and wife,” says José. “It was a time to take in the day until now, but also the last 12 years, and look forward to what we are going to start building together.”

José, who describes himself as a crybaby, says he kept his composure (and kept his makeup on) until his first dance to Coldplay’s “Yellow,” sung live by his sister and a family friend. “I was the most eager of all to marry this guy,” she says. “During that first dance, hearing my sister sing the words that we would always sing to each other, I couldn’t believe it had finally happened.”

The tie for the bride's bouquet featured a photo of her late father.

The details

Planner Dream Weaver Events

Ceremony venue Roman Catholic Church of Saint Barnabas

Reception place Commissioner Drake

Wedding dress Ferré Sposa

Reception dress Jillian Joy handmade

Costume RW&CO.

Hair and makeup Diana Lee

Rings Erynn Guild, Bobbi’s Jeweler

flowers Northern Blush Floral

Pie By Belle

Photography Photograph by Cassie Cetlin


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