Today's real wedding comes to me by way of Alizeh Ali of Alizeh Photography in Islamabad, Pakistan. It's a gorgeous fusion wedding, with plenty of gorgeous Persian and Pakistani traditions. I've seen a few Persian weddings here and there on other blogs, and I've always admired the very beautiful ceremonial rites of the process. The truth is, however, that I really don't understand the culture behind many of them, so Alizeh was kind enough to explain them for me and for my readers.
Her colours were Purple and Blue.The colours of Royalty. She looked like a Persian Princess and he was her Prince. This was one breathtaking and splendorous event and I'm so happy they choose me to capture it. The ceremony was an Iranian Sofreh Aghd and it was a photographer's fantasy to capture such a fairy tale.
"Sofreh" means to spread.The "Suzni" or "Termeh" is a cloth used as the base upon which the beautiful antiques and ornaments were laid on.It is a cloth passed from mother to daughter and is the "something old" .This Suzni was the bride's great grandmothers gharara!. It was what her great grandmother wore to school & it got me thinking that maybe if all our uniforms were this beautiful we wouldn't have doodled all over the edges.At least I wouldn't have.
Everyone who saw the Sofreh could tell it was painstakingly designed, coordinated aesthetically arranged. The entire ceremony was a cohesion of culture, traditions and elegance . There was a stunning golden mirror called the "Ayne e Bakht" at the head of the Sofreh.It is kept to bring light & brightness into the future of the couple. Two beautiful blue candle columns, candelabras which held matt gold and silver candles, and DIY floating candles in crystal bowls boasted on either side of the mirror.
Months of preparation and planning had gone into this Sofrreh and you could tell. There were Tokhem e Murgh *decorated eggs* and Ajil which were beautiful assortment of nuts placed in crystal bowls & silver dishes.Adorable pens in a silver tray for the Bride & Groom to sign their marriage documents with. I loved the fact that even such fine details matched the colour theme:)
Some items were brought from Iran such as the Esfand and the"Khand".The Esfand was decorated in a beautiful Paisely on a silver tray and is believed to ward off evil. The two sugar cones "Khand"are made out of hardened sugar and are ground together above the bride and bridegroom's head (over the scarf held above their heads) throughout the ceremony to shower them in sugar symbolizing sweetness and happiness.The bride reads the Quran until the groom enters and then he sits beside her looks at the Holy Quran first and then at her reflection in the mirror.*Patience anyone?!*
Being in culturally rich country it's always a pleasure to capture the Rasms (traditions) which make our eastern weddings so flavorful . However capturing the uniqueness of the Iranian traditions was exciting and delightful .Another Iranian "Rasm" was of honey in a beautiful goblet which the couple must taste to ensure sweetness in their life. A beautiful winter wish tree lit up one corner of the room.
The "Wish" leaves were in powder blue with ornate golden ribbons and were placed in an antique silver tray. Friends & Family wrote their blessings in an assortment of glittery ink for Raza & Marziyeh and then placed them on the wish tree.It was a nikkah that involved all the guests, made everyone participants rather than just spectators.The smiles radiating from everyone was testimony to the fun of it all.
Lovely! Thank you Alizeh! I'll be back with loads more from this beautiful confection in a bit (yes, there's so much more!). In the meanwhile, check out Alizeh's Facebook Page for more of her work and to get in touch with her!
All images courtesy of Alizeh Photography