My cousin’s reception

My cousin’s wedding reception took place a few days after the wedding which is quite traditional according to Islam. This event was a much more laid back affair, especially for us as the groom’s family hosted this one (the wedding day was hosted by the bride’s family).

The venue was decorated nicely and the stage looked great with white flowers and pretty lighting. There was also a cake that tied in with the theme.

All the ladies on our side of the family decided to wear pastel coloured outfits, and my nieces all matched too. I decided on a blue ombre outfit with diamantes and my sister bought me a blue clutch to go with it which I love.

The bride and groom arrived together shortly after and sat on the stage so everyone could say hello and take pictures. The bride was dressed in a lovely light pink and blue outfit that sparkled in the light, and the groom looked dashing in his black tie.

After dinner everyone gathered on stage and took pictures with the couple to remember the happy occasion and celebrate them. I pray the my cousin and her husband have a long, happy, healthy life ahead together. They’ll be able to relax on their honeymoon to Dubai soon, which I’m sure will be very welcome.

My cousin’s wedding

My cousin’s wedding day finally arrived. It was a much anticipated event as we don’t have many big family weddings here. The wedding was an evening event, which was a good thing as it turned out to be the hottest day on record here in the UK! Having got dressed in our finest we drove to in our much needed air conditioned cars to the other side of London to the wedding venue.

The venue was beautifully decorated and the stage was adorned with pretty flowers and rose petals for when the bride and groom arrive.

The wedding cake was set up with matching cupcakes which I thought were great, and the favours were placed on tables for each guest, which consisted of a small pot of honey and small bottles of zamzam water, which is considered holy.

As guests started to arrive they were greeted with welcome drinks and asked to write a note to the bride and groom in their guestbook. The bride’s sister looked lovely with all her matching jewellery and the rest of the family all looked dashing too. My little nieces had matching pink and gold outfits that looked really cute.

Finally the groom and his family arrived and the bride walked in on her brother’s arm to take her side with her husband. My cousin looked beautiful in her traditional red wedding dress; her hair, make up and outfit looked perfect and her henna a dark red as it should be.

The wedding went well with good food and it was nice to see the family and relatives all together. It was an emotional affair, especially when the bride had to say goodbye to her family and go home with the groom, but all the hard work that everyone put in paid off. The reception traditionally takes place a few days after the wedding so I’ll see them again soon.

My cousin’s Henna party

With my cousin’s wedding fast approaching there have been lots of celebrations, especially the traditional kind. My sisters, mum and I were invited over for a henna party, which gives all the ladies and girls in the family and among friends a chance to have fun and enjoy good food and each others’ company.

The house and garden had been decorated to look pretty and flowery.

A marquee had been erected in the garden for us all, which included a colourful seating area for the bride as well as other lovely touches.

The bride was dressed in a beautiful green and gold outfit with some lovely accessories. The guests were also wearing some pretty outfits. I love these colorful bangles my sister was wearing.

The evening began with women giving the bride advice on what they thought was useful to know going into married life, which was interesting but also somewhat embarrassing! Then it was time for food and some folksong singing, with some putting henna on their hands too. As the guests made their way to leave at the end of the evening they were handed boxes of Pakistani sweets to enjoy.

We all were invited over for a second evening too. This one was much like the first but with some more colourful and pretty outfits. I especially liked the bride’s lovely traditional Pakistani outfit of yellow and green with accessories to complete the look.

There was some more folksong singing, but with a dolki (drum) this time to help keep everyone in the same beat, which the young girls played singing twinkle little star to.

Everyone had a lovely time and we are all looking forward to the wedding in a couple of days time.

2018 Highlights

As 2018 draws to a close, it’s natural to reflect back on the year. I hope that you all have had a significant and positive one. 2018 for me has had some highs, such as having a new niece join our family, starting a new job, as well as experiencing fun, new things such as taking a candy making course. I’ve also been able to visit new places and had a break away with my family. My lows have been feeling unmotivated and uninspired at times to post on my blog, and wondering if it’s still relevant. I have also felt like the world is passing me by and that I have so much I still want to do.

I leave you with some of my favourite photos of the 2018 and I wish you all happy New Year and with the hope that 2019 is one of fullfillment, happiness and adventure for all of us.

Eid-ul-Adha 2018/1439

Eid Mubarak everyone. Taqabbal Allahu Minna Wa Minkum (May Allah accept it from you and us).

Happy Eid to all to Muslims around the world who are celebrating Eid-al-Adha which coincides with the pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia and honours Abraham’s promise to God. In these blessed days may all pilgrims’ prayers and ours be accepted.

Winter Wedding

I went to a wedding recently of a couple that are close to my family. The venue was prettily decorated and everyone was dressed in their best to help celebrate the happy day with the couple.

The bride and groom made for a handsome couple, and I loved how the bride’s hands had beautiful henna on them and were embellished with some sparkly jewellery.

Everyone had a great evening and I hope the couple have a happy, healthy future ahead of them.

My sister’s hennaed hands

I’ve been trying to post more frequently but things have been super busy over the last few months with Eid, weddings and birthdays, (not to mention dodgy internet connections which hasn’t helped either!), but hopefully it seems a bit calmer now which means that I can get up to speed with my posts.

I wanted to share more pictures from my younger sister’s wedding that took place a couple of months ago. In Pakistan and other South Asian countries it is tradition for the bride-to-be to decorate her hands and feet with henna/mehndi a couple of nights before the wedding. The design my sister chose was intricate and very delicate and with the steady, skilled hands of the mehndi artist it came out beautifully

These patterns soon became much more complex and full, with henna being applied on both sides of my sisters’ hands and parts of her arms. You can click on the pictures below to view larger images, and close ups, (maybe if you look close enough you’ll find the name of the groom which he is supposed to look for on the night of the wedding).

henna

I didn’t get a chance to have any henna applied to my hands, but a number of the guests did, including my baby niece who had a butterfly pattern applied (and which lasted about 10 minutes before it got smudged).

I think the finished result of my sister’s hennaed hands was beautiful, reminding me of lace gloves with intricate, delicate patterns. My sister kept the henna on until the following morning before washing it off to make sure the dye was as dark as possible, which you will be able to see soon in photos that I am hoping to post of the wedding

My sister’s Henna party

So I’m finally allowed to post some pictures of my sister’s wedding and I thought I’d start with the Mendhi/Henna party. The mendhi or henna party is where the women of the bride’s family get together to have one last fun party before the big day. Often the women of the groom’s family are also invited and are asked to bring the henna which is then applied to the bride’s hands in preparation of the wedding day.

The henna party is usually bright and colourful and my sister wanted a peacock themed affair so we spent months looking for anything that would fit the theme.

We decided on purples, blues, greens and golds and added small peacock feathers to really bring out the theme. The candles are lit and the tray of bangles and henna brought in with the bride as she is brought into the party by family and friends.

Me, my sisters and my sister-in-law decided to add a tasty aspect to the party by having a sweet table. I thought the biscuits made by my sister-in-law and the cupcakes by my younger sister were especially pretty

As the evening went on the usual traditions were carried out; feeding the bride something sweet and giving some money to charity in her name, singing traditional wedding folksongs and dancing (unfortunately I can’t show you photos of the singing and dancing)

We all had a really fun time, and the bride enjoyed herself too, with friends and family and being the centre of attention of course! My photos haven’t come out as well as I would have liked as the lighting wasn’t great, but if you want to check out the professional photographer’s photos which have come out really good, then you can head over to my sister’s blog