A heartfelt budget affair

I love so much about this wedding. I like that the bride and groom stuck to their desire to have a small, intimate wedding – almost unheard of in the Arab culture! Well, unheard of in any ethnic culture I’d say. I love that Widyan had her dress made by a dressmaker because she didn’t want to overspend. In fact, her whole wedding was a testament to what we try to espouse here: low cost, DIY elements, family oriented, heartwarming, and ultimately, so beautiful. Widyan truly, looked like a queen.

Here are all the details:

What marriage means to me To be able to have a spouse who will help me (and I help him) to lead a fulfilling life towards worshipping God. Marriage to me also means promising each opther that our commitment to one another is forever no matter how many challenges we face

How you met We met at Bankstown Poetry Slam in August almost two years ago.

Proposal We had fallen in love (after a few months of meeting) but we are both very traditional so he asked my dad first before he asked me.

Style of wedding I broke all Arab tradition and went with a very intimate wedding (90 people) It almost gave my mother a heart attack but she eventually came around to the idea after spending a couple of days explaining to her what I meant by ‘intimate’. Considering I’m one of six siblings and he’s one of eight, we were very proud we had achieved our small dream wedding. We wanted the vibe to be comfortable, elegant and representative of our personalities so we picked a rustic chic wedding.

I wanted to avoid all things diamantes, crystals and silver, we had pale floral flowers, hessian and lace table runners, logs slices as decor and our table centrepieces was a long vase fish tank with a fighter fish inside. We decided on this table centrepiece because my husband’s first gift to me was a fighter fish. At the end of the night a few of our guests took a fish home.

Bride’s dress One day I was scrolling through my Instagram feed and came across a designer by the name of Berta Bridal. They had stunning wedding dresses and some were even modest enough without any alterations, but their prices were even more stunning. So I searched high and low for a wedding dress and as many Muslim women who adorn the hijab know, finding the perfect dress is almost impossible without layering underneath or having to wear a long sleeve top. Although some women can pull this look off, I don’t particularly think I can.

I stumbled across a small dress maker and pattern maker by the name of Qwen who works out of her humble home in Casula. I printed a bunch of pictures I found inspiring and took them to her. What she did with it was magic. She designed my dream dress in a matter of minutes at a price that did not break the bank. Now I can tell you I shopped around for designers and majority were charging over 7k for a simple design. I love my fashion and my wedding dress is something I’ve dreamed about my whole life, but I wasn’t going to pay a crazy amount for something I’m only wearing once.

So Qwen was my final decision. Her work ethic and professionalism and above all friendship helped us create my dress and I could not be more in love with it. For the lace of my dress we picked a thick ivory guipure lace, for the lining we went with a stretch satin, for my train (3 meters long) we picked a thick chiffon with the same guipure lace trimming around it and for the hijab we went with an ivory jersey fabric because it was the best material to do the turban style with. The veil was pearl ivory tulle with guipure cut-out flowers trimming. I felt like a Queen.

Bridesmaids Qwen also designed my bridesmaids dresses and one of the flower girl dresses which was also hijab friendly. We decided on a washed out blue/grey fitted dress with chiffon around their waste. The dresses also had a trail from the back and of course lace for the top with a jersey fabric for the lining.

Memorable moment Most memorable moment was my dad walking me out of the home I grew up in down the stairs towards My husband. Seeing my husband’s face when he saw me bought me to tears. I’ll never forget that look because it was the exact same look he gave me when we first met.

Overall The majority of my wedding was DIY. I didn’t want to spend 50k on my wedding. I wanted to be responsible and reasonable but at the same time to splurge a little. I did many things DIY including my wedding invitations (majority of the things I needed I purchased from Spotlight), bonbonnieres, venue decor and even my hijab styling was all DIY. These were things I wanted to add a personal touch to and was very particular about them. I also love supporting local businesses so the photographer, florist and cake maker were people I personally knew who had small business operating and genuinely believed in their work and enjoy supporting them, so I loved that they were all part of my special day.


Dress: Q Le dressmaker

Photographer: Charlie Coe

Videographer: Almiro Films

Florist: Blooms ‘n’ More

Venue: Eschol Park House

Cake: Samia Sabih

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  • Samya says:

    Beautiful piece. The bride looks gorgeous. I’m getting married in May and can totally relate. Being an Arab comes with a lot of culture. It took me two months to convince my mother to have an intimate wedding of just 60 people. I don’t see a point of spending so much money to entertain people you hardly know. So I told my mother that I want to remember celebrating this day with people I know and love. Alhamdulilah she agreed. Only one month to go inshallah. I hope the bride and groom live a long and happy life. Mabrook. X
    Samya, UK

    • admin says:

      This was a favourite wedding of mine as well. Good on you for staying strong and sticking to what you wanted! I know how hard that can be! Good luck and congratulations!!

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