Yes, this post is very late - and yes, I apologize. But I promise I have a valid excuse…..school is hard. I’m finally on a good schedule with school and my side-hustle, which means more time to write and plan content for the new year, so here it is! Mine and Farhan’s Nikkah took place in September, and the whole summer was dedicated to planning it to be the the day of our dreams - and it was exactly that, and more.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
DId you hire a planner?
No, I didn’t! With a lot of intense organization, we were able to do the event without a hired decorator or full “planner”. Although, I do think a specific person needs to be in charge of direction, since you yourself can’t be running around the day of. My older sister, Sania, despite being pregnant, ran the show! (Girl Power.) We went over everything the night before, and I typed out printed out an itinerary for her and she made sure everything ran smoothly. Family is truly the greatest blessing.
who were your vendors/hired?
Everything is detailed in the post, but here’s a quick roundup of their name and IG handles.
Photography: Jenna Masoud (@jennamasoud_)
Bride + Groom Outfit: Nadia Fashion Gallery (@nadiafashiongalleryofficial)
Stage Florals: All in Bloom by Seherisch Ahmad (@sahmad.allinbloom)
MUA: Mona Chebli (@ladychebli)
Mendhi: Sidra Hashmi (@sidsbeautypage)
Donuts Catering: Broad Street Dough Co
Food Catering: Desi; Shan Grill - Italian; Sterling Gardens
how did you stay organized?
I bought a blank sketchbook from Michaels, and organized it by sections like Entrance, Stage,Tables, Dessert, etc. I love curating a Pinterest board, but I think sometimes ideas can get lost on there! Using my Pinterest board, I picked out key ideas I wanted, printed them out, and stuck them into the book by each section. By printing out pictures, I was able to select exact things I wanted instead of obsessively pinning whatever I came across on the internet. In each section, I would list what supplies I would need for each project, set dates for when each project would happen, and went from there. There are pre-made wedding planners, but I enjoyed the process of making my own from scratch.
On the day of the event, I had a printed out itinerary that listed each part of the wedding and what was needed for it to be finished. Because of that, everything ran smoothly! You should always prepare for at least one thing to go wrong though, because it will. For us, the mic was missing - which thankfully, wasn’t the worst thing in the world and was solved as quick as possible.
where did you find inspiration?
There’s a huge selection of wedding blogs/ magazines out there! Here’s what I used.
The Knot Magazine
WHERE DID YOU SHOP?
That summer was definitely filled with numerous trips to crafts stores. My top visits were AC Moore, Michaels, Hobby Lobby, Target, and Dollar Tree.
how did you deal with the stress?
I am a person that gets easily stressed out (who isn’t?)- but to be completely honest, this process was more fun that stressful! If you keep a positive attitude towards it, it’ll manifest and become that. Of course, I had the occasional freak outs here and there (I’m not perfect) - but I constantly tried my best to remind myself to breathe, and take one thing a step at a time. Meditation was definitely my best-friend that summer. (The app Headspace is my favorite.) Creating a schedule for myself and letting myself take breaks was the key to not being a “Bridezilla”. Also, ask for help if you need it. Because trust me, you’ll need it.
How long did the planning take?
Me and Farhan got engaged in May, so I planned from May - August. It was exactly enough time needed for me.
Are you having a Ruksat and Valima? WILL you DIY that as well?
Yes, we are, but not for another year. Honestly, I would not DIY those events (some people do!) because they’re going to be much larger, and hiring people just seems like the easier option for us.
To be honest, right after the event I wished I gave some minor details a little more effort and time, or hired an artist to do them - but in the grand scheme of things, the tiniest of details don’t really matter that much as they do in your head, I promise.
Photo Hoop - Supplies Needed: Hula Hoop, Gold Spray Point, Goal Leaf Foil, Matte Printed Pictures, Ribbon, and Hot Glue
People are surprised but the photo hoop that held mine and Farhan’s pictures was actually a mini hula hoop I picked up at a dollar store! With a little gold spray paint, gold fail, ribbon, and hot glue - it became a perfect personalized touch to our entrance table. I highly encourage adding personal touches to your day as much as you can - it creates a unique atmosphere that people won’t forget.
Our programs were printed on VistaPrint.
Supplies Needed: Books (Purchase from Thrift Stores, Libraries, etc.), Brown Wrapping Paper, Faux Leaves, Twine, and a Sharpie
Me and Farhan are avid readers - and we couldn’t come up with any other favor besides good ol’ books. We both took trips to thrift stores, goodwills, and even donated some of our favorite books to create a collection ready for guests to pick from. It was a complete hit and there was no books left at the end of the day. Wrapping each book added a personalized and put-together touch.
Supplies Used: Bottles, Gold, Rose Gold, and Copper Spray Paint, Votives, Roses, Baby’s Breath, Gold Terrariums, Long Glass Candles, and Book Pages. (I owned 3 copies of one of my favorite books, The Great Gatsby, and used one of the extra copies as the bottom part of the centerpiece.
My family and I set up the layout of each centerpiece beforehand and organized them in boxes — that way setting up on the day of was a quick process!
I had one vision for the stage and florals - and that was simple; greenery and white roses galore. I purchased the frame from Etsy, and all credits for the dreamy floral arrangement goes to All in Bloom by Seherisch Ahmad (@sahmad.allinbloom on Instagram). I highly recommend hiring a florist for these kind of bigger events and ideas, because they really help you get the vision down to the T, especially with something that is so detailed and takes a lot of time/work.
DESSERT (DONUT WALL)
Supplies Needed: Wooden Plank/Slab, Wood Stain, Doilies, Pin Hooks, Sign
Making the dessert spot that everyone loves is easier than it looks! Me and my mom purchased a piece of thin wood in the desired size from Home Depot, which was under $20. After, you paint with a wooden stain, and add the doilies (to protect the donuts from the wood) in a pattern of however you want the donuts displayed. Next, you place the pin-hooks in the center of each doily, and voila! A perfect place for the donuts to hang. A simple metallic sign that I purchased from Etsy completed the project.
Custom Cups - Supplies Needed: Plain Coffee Cups in Bulk (Amazon), Stamp of your choice. (I found this “I love you more than coffee” one at Michaels.)
What’s a day-time event without coffee? We filled a table in the entrance with coffee, tea, and hot chocolate, and other little details like different flavored creamers and syrups, marshmallows, and chocolate chips. The customized cups added a personalized touch to everyone’s favorite section. (Trust me, this table was poppin’.)
The End. I hope this post explains the event well, and if I missed something, I try my very best to answer my DMs and emails. xx.