I maintain that the most beautiful weddings are those that are simple but oozing with love and this DIY backyard wedding is a perfect example. Samaah and MuhammadQasim were destined to be together, their parents having known each other since before their birth! They attended the same school, the same religious weekend schools and got to know each other better after joining the youth committee at their local mosque. The proposal therefore happened in the traditional manner of approaching their respective parents, in what Samaah describes as being “rather anti-climactic and unromantic” but being sure of their love, this wasn’t really an issue for them.
Although they experienced some struggles planning it during the month of Ramadan, and having a death in the family two months before the wedding, the support of their family and friends helped to keep everyone in good spirits and ensure that the planning went as smoothly as it could. Both being students, they wanted to keep within an economical budget and therefore settled on their local Islamic centre as the venue for the wedding ceremony, as ” there was clearly no better venue for us to start our marriage than the place that brought us together, surrounded by all of our family and friends.” As for the reception, they wanted an outdoor reception and were more than happy to simply host it at the bride’s parents backyard.
Given the relaxed venues they had chosen, they kept their wedding style casual and fun. Bright corals punctuated the cream and gold palette, with beautiful embroidered details on Samaah’s custom made dress made in India. She slipped into something more comfortable for the reception, also custom made to suit her standards of modesty. The overall affair was a labour of love, with family and friends all contributing in some way or another, such as DIY-ing the centrepieces, flowers, wedding favours, signage, to the guestbook and even the invitations. The fabric for the bridesmaid’s scarves were hand picked and stitched by a close friend, Samaah’s uncle made her ring for the reception- her grandmother’s old brooch repurposed into a statement ring.
A particularly memorable moment of the day was the first time they saw each other after their religious ceremony when MuhammadQasim came over to the women’s section, eyes closed and led by the photographer to where Samaah was standing. He opened his eyes and gasped upon seeing her, Samaah’s friends giggled, she grinned, and tears were shed.
All of this culminated in a beautiful, rustic chic event that ultimately reflected Samaah and MuhammadQasim’s views on marriage…
“Marriage to us is about spending the rest of our lives with a person we trust with our hearts and souls. It’s about having someone who you can trust to constantly push you towards becoming the best version of yourself that you could possibly be. It’s about overcoming life’s obstacles with someone to lean on when times get tough, and to laugh with when times are good. Marriage is about making a promise to cherish another person’s soul as much as you cherish your own. It’s about sacrifice, being selfless, and learning to be humble enough to do both on a regular basis.”
Photography The Kobels Stationary My best friend, Aaliya Sheriff Florist DIY by friends and family members; flowers purchased from Costco and a local flower farmer Ceremony venue Az-Zahraa Islamic Centre Reception venue My parents’ backyard Catering Community member and Gulberg Restaurant Cake and other desserts Cloud 9 and family friends Décor DIY by friends and family members Wedding favors DIY by friends and family members Signage Aaliya Sheriff Bridal gown Custom made in India Veil Included with dress Head piece Avenue 22 Bridal Shoes Nine West (nikkah) and Aldo (reception) Makeup Iris Chan Bridesmaids dresses, shoes Bluenotes Bridesmaid gifts The Bay (bracelets) Groom’s Suit Custom made in India (nikkah) and Macy’s (reception) Shoes Aldo Groomsmen gifts/ties Le Chateau (ties)