Sara And Saad, Austin, USA
From a colorful, loud haldi ceremony to a sophisticated and classy reception, Sara and Saad's wedding in Texas, US, was an interesting mix of contrasts.
Despite having a wedding away from their homeland, Sara and Saad managed to host nuptials that were every bit Indian. The couple shares with us pictures and highlights of their big day captured beautifully by Ivy Weddings.
How We Met
“I always say our love story is unique, and that Saad and I have perfected the art of long-distance relationships since both of us were in one till we got engaged. We weren’t even in the same zip code back then. It was crazy! However, this only made us stronger. In fact, we give all the credit to our vendors spread across the globe for being able to help us plan and pull off a wedding in Dallas.”
“One morning Saad gave me a call and asked me to meet him for lunch. However, when I reached the pre-decided spot, he picked me up from there and took me to the Austin Botanical Garden – which is a lush, green stowaway in the middle of the bustling downtown area. I thought we were going to a cute cafe in the garden. So there I was, strolling down this path in the middle of vibrant nature expecting to get fries or a cheeseburger somewhere, but instead, we ended up in front of a beautiful Japanese inspired waterfall. I took a moment to admire it, and when I turned around, he was down on one knee. I didn’t know what to do! When he took my hand and asked me if I would be his best friend forever and marry him, I had to remind myself to breathe for a second! It was, in my mind, just the perfect lunch break ever.”
Sara recalls, “I loved the kind of attention we paid to the details. Right from our wedding card to the color scheme, to the outfit on each member of the bridal court, everything was planned and executed to match our vision. There wasn’t a single thing that was out of place. We tried to make sure we were prepared, but the best thing about being so detail-oriented was that we knew we were on top of everything! We spent so much time planning it that the actual day of wedding felt like a breeze!”
Elaborating further on their vision, Saad adds, “ We know it’s very cliché, but we wanted to make our wedding unique and extremely personal. From the mood, food, and location – we discussed all matters in depth to make sure we got what we wanted. Moreover, we had an amazing team in place, and we felt like they were very focused on not letting us stress out.”
Sara concludes by saying, ”One thing I would say about our wedding is that I’m so incredibly thankful and proud of the fact that each of our families gave us the freedom to make our visions come true. Usually, desi weddings are a big production with many opinions involved. However, Saad and I made every decision together. Inputs from our families were welcome, but at the end, we made every decision as a team.”
Pre – Wedding Photoshoot
“While most couples plan their photoshoots together, ours was a romantic surprise! Saad had thought through everything, and it was done to perfection! A day before the wedding he took me to The Castle At Rockwall where both of us dressed our part while Ivy Weddings took care of the photography. I wore a beautiful sparkly gown by Adrienne Papell, and Saad opted for a grey suit by Bar III which he accessorized with a Kenneth Cole watch. My makeup was taken care of by Sadia Sanam, and Expressions of Decor helped us with the floral arrangements.”
A traditional ceremony was hosted by the bride’s family known as the ‘gaye holud’ in Bengali or ‘haldi’ in Hindi. “This involved our family and friends applying generous amounts of turmeric paste on Saad and me. This was followed by our friends engaging in a proxy war through choreographed dance performances (think: Bollywood dance off). The ceremony, held at The Texas Star, was a combination of colors and sound. I had envisioned my haldi function to be very loud, vibrant and filled with love and that’s just what we managed to achieve. A lot of the decor elements, my clothes, jewellery, as well as the outfits for the bridal court were custom made from India and Bangladesh. I took a special trip to these places in December to hand-pick these things myself. The dress code for this function was traditional splendor. While I chose a bright yellow saree with a pink and green border from Vasabi Collection in Bangladesh, Saad opted for a white kurta and a yellow bandi jacket with a floral print.”
“Customarily, this event is hosted by the groom’s family to introduce the new couple and announce their union to all their loved ones. Our regal reception took place at Sheraton DFW Airport Hotel and consisted of a ring exchange between Saad and me, greeting our guests and of course cutting the cake! The celebration continued with a traditional feast, followed by speeches, fabulous performances, and lots of toasts raised in our honor.
I wanted to contrast this event with our haldi function which was very loud and vibrant, by making sure that our reception was the complete opposite. The theme of our reception was muted tones of blush and gold. We paired the soft colors with a bold dramatic stage and the setup looked like an absolute dream. I remember, right before our grand entrance at the reception when the double doors were about to open, I had butterflies in my stomach. Saad noticed my nervousness, took my hand, straightened up, and said, “Let’s do this.” That instantly calmed me down and as soon as we entered the ballroom, not only was I calm and composed, but I also had the biggest smile on my face. He calmed my nerves in an instant and then the rest of the evening was just a blissful blur!”
“For this event, I wore a champagne outfit by Sabyasachi, while Saad wore a blue suit from Capra & Cavelli. Just like the haldi, my jewellery for this function too was designed by my mother and me to match each outfit perfectly. Because of my blogging background and Saad’s keen eye for detail, we were able to create an inspired look based on every occasion and attire.”
Advice To couples
“All elements while planning a wedding are extremely interrelated so do not treat any aspect of your wedding on its own. Talk to your photographer and videographer about lighting well in advance, consult with the decorator and photographer about where to place the cake and so on. Plan to the nth detail! Have a vision but give your team the liberty to create their magic. You will be surprised how much better it will turn out if you communicate a vision to them and then let them help you create those timeless moments!” says Saad.
“I would echo the same thing, of course, brides pretty much know what they want and how they want it. However, don’t forget to discuss the wedding planning and outfits with your groom because it’s also his special day and asking him for his thoughts or opinions is important. You’ll be surprised at how much he also cares about the day and how much he adds to it! Saad was definitely incredible at this, and sometimes he was even more detail oriented than I was! This was actually very helpful because we were able to really work as a unit,” Sara adds.
The Wedding Makers
Venues: The Castle at Rockwall, Texas (Pre-Wedding Photoshoot); The Texas Star, Texas (Haldi); Sheraton DFW Airport Hotel, Texas (Wedding & Reception)
Wedding Coordinator: Lavender & Pearl Events
Decor: Weddings by Farah
Florals: Expressions of Decor
Bride’s Outfits: Adrienne Papell (Pre-Wedding Photoshoot), Vasabi Collection (Hadi), Sabyasachi (Wedding & Reception)
Groom’s Outfits: Bar III (Pre-Wedding Photoshoot), Capra & Cavelli (Reception) Calvin Klein (Reception)
Groom’s Shoes: To Boot New York (Pre Wedding Photoshoot & Reception)
Groom’s Accessories: Kenneth Cole
Makeup: Sadia Sanam (Pre-Wedding Photoshoot), J Torry (Haldi and Wedding)
Hairstylist: J Torry
Mehndi Artist: Henna by Afshan
Caterer: 7 Spice Plano (Mehndi)
Cake and cookies: Linh Tran
DJ: DJ Jazz Entertainment
Photography: Matt and Ivy for Ivy Weddings
Videography: A.K.Films (Haldi)