WHAT WAS THE INSPIRATION BEHIND YOUR WEDDING? // The inspiration of our wedding – LOVE. // Matt and I just wanted to be ourselves, amped up, but us. Thematically, though, we definitely incorporated our shared enthusiasm for thoroughbred horse racing, as we had for our Hollywood Park racetrack engagement session. The racing theme came so naturally and easily just took a life of its own. Our beautiful wedding invitations incorporated an artistic rendering of one of my own horses, complete with a “ticket”. We realized the guest count would easily be accommodated by 11 tables, and there have been 11 winners of racing’s most difficult feat – the Triple Crown. So, instead of using numbers, naming the tables after these esteemed athletes just made sense. Cocktail hour featured hors d’oeuvres based on the respective Triple Crown races. We had miniature Kentucky Hot Browns for the Derby, mini Maryland crab cakes for the Preakness, and mini New York style pizzas for the Belmont. Oh, and, yes, the signature drink was a mint julep 😉 Beyond the racing theme, I also wanted there to be a nod to my Chaldean culture. Which brings us to…
WHAT WAS THE MOST MEMORABLE/FAVORITE PART ABOUT YOUR WEDDING DAY? // My favorite part of the day was, of course, the exchange of vows and being pronounced man and wife. Second to that, our grand entrance went above and beyond what I had hoped! As I wrote above, I wanted there to be a nod to my Chaldean culture included in our wedding. I thought the perfect way to work it in was to do a traditional “khiga/zaffa” entrance, where the wedding party dances in to the beat of Middle Eastern rhythms, with colorful coined scarves undulating and joyful voices ululating. My blue-eyed, blond-haired husband got down like a true Chaldo, and I couldn’t have been more heartened – or amused.
WHY WAS PHOTOGRAPHY IMPORTANT TO YOU? // Photography was important to me because the day truly does fly by, much of it blurred. Memories are wonderful, but to capture a moment in time, in perfect focus… that’s priceless.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE SUN & SPARROW? // We chose Sun & Sparrow because they were the only photography team whose vision was calibrated with my own. They knew/know how to balance romantic whimsy with timeless grace. There photos are not two-dimensional, as they express a tremendous depth of emotion, which one can not only see, but feel.
WHAT WAS YOUR SOMETHING OLD, NEW, BORROWED, BLUE? // Something old: A gold necklace with a diamond cross my mother gave me years ago, and which I wear every day. Also, a pair of shoes I had actually bought years ago to go with the first gift Matt ever bought me – a dress. I wore that very dress the morning of the wedding. // Something new: My wedding gown, tiara and veil 😉 // Borrowed: Oops, I didn’t wear anything borrowed, BUT, the amazing Sun & Sparrow ladies and Nicole of Nicole Alexandra Designs lent beautiful décor, including beautiful bronze horses and lovely lace linens. // Something blue: A gold bracelet set with blue lapis lazuli stones from my father’s home country of Iraq, which he had given me when I was an infant.
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR BRIDES WHO ARE CURRENTLY IN THE PLANNING PROCESS? // First and foremost – your wedding isn’t about a day. Your wedding is about a marriage. Keep the focus on the love you share. As for the planning itself… Find vendors who share your sense of style. It’s ok not to know exactly what you want and to defer to your team. Unfettered expectations were so fantastically exceeded in my case. 😉