Ever wonder what happens when “vintage New York City meets vintage India and Pakistan with a modern edge?” Well, lovelies… I can tell you one thing. It’s downright magical. Think vibrant blooms from Poppies & Posies, gorgeous stylings coordinated by Sarah Glowacki of Daughter of Design and a stunning bride and groom who know a thing or two about throwing a perfect party. See it all captured by Dennis Kwan right here.
And some more magic from Kiss the Bride Films… enjoy, lovelies.
From the Bride… I finally went on a date with Zaahir five years after my college friends (one grew up with him and the other went to grad school with him) first tried to set us up. How did I turn down such a handsome face in the first place? I consider myself a non-traditional Muslim woman, and my stubbornness prevented me from even fathoming I could ever meet a Muslim guy who matched my disposition. But appearances can be deceiving as we all know, and things were never the same after our first brunch date at Char No. 4 in Brooklyn.
When we got engaged and started thinking about our wedding, we knew a few things off the bat: (1) we did not want a traditional three-day South Asian wedding but did want to honor our families, and (2) we wanted to get married in Brooklyn where we lived and fell in love, and (3) we wanted it to feel like a mashup of all the forces that made us who we are and led us to one another.
Our design inspiration was vintage New York City meets vintage India and Pakistan with a modern edge. When we visited Skylight One Hanson, we knew it was where we wanted to get married. Skylight One Hanson is the site of the former Williamsburgh Savings Bank, built in 1929 in a modernized Byzantine-Romanesque style. The architectural details of the space – breathtaking vaulted ceilings, marble floors, ornate silhouettes, and glimmering mosaics – reminded us of Islamic architecture in the Middle East and South Asia. The architectural connection between this old bank in Brooklyn and the mosques of our mother lands is what inspired the rest of our wedding design.
We started with color. Because we knew that we didn’t want to wear traditional South Asian wedding attire, opting instead for a Reem Acra dress and Armani tux, we took our color inspiration for the rest of the wedding from South Asia. I selected colors that were natural to the subcontinent – indigo, marigold, poppy, gold, and silver. We went with Juliet and Sierra from Poppies & Posies because their work is organic but composed and they know how to use color. With a little help from Pinterest, they got our vision instantly. They made the color story come to life through flora and fauna.
The inspiration for our paper suite came from Islamic geometric patterns found on the walls of mosques. Fun fact: our invitation design is lifted from the pages of a 14th century Egyptian Mamluk Quran. I cannot give enough props to our Etsy find Lauren Hummel of Alive and Kicking Design. She silk-screened our entire paper suite and welcome totes by hand using patterns from a book on Islamic geometric patterns I found. She even helped us custom design our photobooth backdrop! It was truly the best kind of collaboration.
We took our unique vision and personalities into consideration when selecting every single vendor. Sarah Glowacki from Daughter of Design made us feel comfortable, took great pains to understand the rituals of Muslim weddings, and was totally the secret strings behind our wedding. For the traditional groom’s procession, she helped us secure an NYC pedicab. She and the Daughter of Design team are the most talented and professional group in the biz! And our caterer… Mary from Cleaver Co. One of our requirements was that we had to source halal meat for dinner since some of our guests had religious dietary restrictions. Many caterers that we interviewed told us it would be difficult to do, but not Mary. When she told us she already had a halal source in Queens, we were in love, and that was before we tasted her food. Mary managed to sneak in flavors from South India, Pakistan, and Burma (where our parents were born) into our locally sourced new American family-style feast.
Here’s the funny part. After putting so much care and thought into the design of our wedding, I can’t really say I paid too much attention to it on our wedding day. What I remember about the day is feeling all my nervousness melt away when I saw Zaahir at our first look, being able to look into the eyes of our nearest and dearest as I walked down the aisle, jumping up and down after we were pronounced husband and wife, and spending the entire night boogying with my beloved. Luckily, thanks to Dennis Kwan and Leslie and Andy from Kiss the Bride Films, we get to relive all the pretty stuff, too.
Photography: Dennis Kwan Wedding Photography | Cinematography: Kiss The Bride Films | Flowers:Poppies & Posies | Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Jewelry: Zameer Kassam | Bridesmaid Dresses: Mirage Collection | Catering: The Cleaver Co. | Makeup: Sharon Becker of SB Beauty | Hair: Maysoon For Face Time Beauty | Lighting: L&M Sound and Light | DJ: DJ Vida of Scratch Weddings | Groom’s Shoes: Salvatore Ferragamo | String Quartet: Tribute String Quartet of Lucy Music | Bride’s Dress: Reem Acra via Gabriella New York | Ceremony and Reception: Skylight One Hanson | Coordination: Sarah Glowacki of Daughter of Design | Flower Girl Dresses: Watters | Getting Ready Location: W Downtown Manhattan | Groom’s Tux and Bow-Tie: Armani via Barneys New York | Henna: Zara Henna | Paper Suite: Alive and Kicking Design | Photobooth: We Love Photobooths | Transportation: Silver Star Limousine