We love a good Persian Jewish wedding here at STG, and today’s is no exception. Sadaf, a clinical pharmacist, and Payam, a personal injury lawyer, had an epic party – with over 500 guests, how could they not?! The awesome energy kept everyone on the dance floor nonstop, and we really do mean nonstop – the bride and groom were so busy tearing up the dance floor that they skipped dinner!
And we love how they followed the Persian Jewish tradition of having the wedding party and close relatives walk down the aisle before the bride and groom and their parents – for Sadaf and Payam, that amounted to over 40 people, each of whom danced down the aisle to a song of their choice!
We’re so touched by how the couple included Payam’s mom, who had tragically passed away two years before, into the wedding, by dedicating the wedding to her on their invites and displaying a picture of her under the chuppah.
We’ll let Sadaf, who was nothing short of ravishing in her dreamy Galia Lahav mermaid gown, tell you the rest…
How we met
Sadaf, the bride: Two and a half years ago, Payam and I attended a mutual friend’s house party. We never talked or met at the party. After the party, a mutual friend told Payam that she thinks we may be a good match for one another.
A few days later Payam send me a message on Facebook. Since we were not Facebook friends, his message went into my spam folder. After a few months I accidently came across his message, which was upper, cute. In the message he wrote: “a mutual friend has spoken highly of you and I would like to get to know you”. It was too cute to say no. I messaged him back and we started a conversation. On June 27th 2016, we finally went on our first date and the rest was history.
An LA Wedding
We got married at Sheraton Universal in Los Angeles CA. We chose Sheraton Universal for several reasons; it has a beautiful ballroom with mirrored walls and gorgeous chandeliers, and a beautiful outdoor area perfect for the chuppah ceremony. My wedding took place in summer and I really wanted to have an outdoor chuppah, so Sheraton Universal was a perfect choice for us.
I planned most of the wedding myself, but I did hire a wedding coordinator to coordinate the night of the wedding so I could enjoy and dance the night away on my wedding day with no worries. I am a simple girl and wanted my wedding to be simple yet elegant. We chose to do an all-white and gold theme wedding with a huge white dance floor that extended from one side of the ballroom the other side.
We had a very simple white and gold invitation but it was very special to us. Payam’s mom passed away two years ago. We cherished her memory on our wedding invites by dedicating our wedding to her.
Hair + Makeup
I decided to have my hair down for the chuppah ceremony and did an updo for the reception. For the down do I did an old Hollywood glam hairstyle, because it is classic and beautiful. For the ceremony I needed to make sure my hair stays nice and intact and that is why I decided to a do a very simple updo. I did two hair demos with my hairstylist and she was so helpful in my decision.
I wanted a timeless bridal look for makeup. I decided on something simple with very neutral tones for my eye shadow, eye liner, some contouring and very light pink lipstick.
A Galia Lahav Dress
I wore a BEAUTIFUL Galia Lahav gown. I remember going to almost every bridal boutique in Los Angles with my mom and sister. I tried on every single dress I had seen on Pinterest and Instagram but it wasn’t until I stepped into Galia Lahav store that I found my dream dress. It was truly my dream dress, a beautiful mermaid gown with a huge train and an extra puffy bottom (what else can a bride ask for?.) I have to admit that I was not a traditional bride and I let Payam see my wedding dress before I bought it. In fact he was the one who helped me pick my dream wedding dress.
I had a small hair accessory which I purchased from a small store in downtown Los Angeles. I chose a simple and small piece because I didn’t want to over do it and wanted to keep it simple.
I had two pairs of shoes. I wore silver Yves Saint Laurent 6 inch Tributes for the pictures and immediately after I changed into comfortable all white sneaker wedges. I purchased my sneaker wedges online, they are called Volatile Sneakers. My dress is very puffy at the bottom, so luckily my sneakers would not show. I wore comfortable sneakers because I wanted to be able to dance the night away. It was the best decision I ever made, I danced in them all night long.
The handsome groom
I had 12 bridesmaids. We all know how difficult it is to find the right dress to wear to your best friend’s wedding, so in order to make it easier for them I didn’t restrict them to just one color or style. I asked my bridesmaids to wear pastel colors. My wedding was in summer and I really wanted them to wear light and happy colors and pastel was the way to go.
An Elegant Floral Chuppah
Our chuppah was filled with white and ivory roses and beautiful orchids were hanging from the side. It was a simple and elegant chuppah. I had seen this same exact chuppah at a bridal magazine and I loved it. I met with my florist and asked him to create the same chuppah for me and he did an amazing job. It looked so much better than I expected it.
Dancing to the Chuppah
In Persian Jewish weddings it is traditional for the bridesmaids, groomsmen, flower girls, ring boys, and close relatives to walk down the aisle before the bride and groom and their parents. We had over 40 people walking down the aisle and we asked every single one of them to pick their own song for walking down the aisle. That was probably my FAVORITE part of the wedding. Most of them walked in pairs and danced all the way to the chuppah, not just a boring dance with a boring slow song but a very highly energetic dance with all kinds of songs that represented each one’s personality. Everyone LOVED it! My sister was dancing for over 3 minutes as she walked towards the chuppah and the crowd couldn’t stop applauding for her.
Our ketubah had very vibrant and bright colors and I think it was it was a perfect touch added to our all white and gold wedding.
Our music choice
We played a variety of different songs, including Persian, Hebrew, American, hip hop, Arabic, Armenian and etc.
Our first dance: ‘Kygo FireStone’. Payam and I had a difficult time deciding on our first dance song, our DJ suggested this song. We thought it was very different and we loved it.
I walked down the aisle to chuppah ceremony – ‘Boi Kallah’ – (‘Halleluja’ by Leonard Cohen). It’s a beautiful Hebrew song perfect for the occasion.
My wedding bouquet was made of all white peonies.
The centerpieces were made with white and ivory roses and orchids with lots of candles and crystal hanging to complement the flowers.
Photographer and videographer
A few of my friends had used my photographer/videographer for their weddings and spoke really highly of him. I loved his worked and he was very pleasant and easy to work with and the end results were amazing. V Production and his team did our photos and video for our wedding.
We had a simple all white three-layer cake and every layer had a different flavor. I was not overly concerned with the cake since our caterer brought a varity of different desserts. We mainly used the cake for the tradition of cutting it.
We had a DJ who brought along a band of 3 people, a violinist and two percussionist.
Our DJ was DJ Sepi, he is extremely popular in the Persian Jewish community and he is simply the best. Not only he plays amazing music, he is also a very pleasant individual to work with.
Dancing all night long
I think what made our wedding so special to us was the energy and the vibe at our wedding. We had a big wedding (over 500 guests) and the majority of our guests were young singles and young couples with great energy. We basically danced all night, NON STOP! We even skipped the dinner because we were too busy dancing up on the stage. We even got to DJ a little and play the drum, which was super fun. Since we had a large number of young people and knew most of them will spend the entire night on the dance floor, we made sure to get an extra-large dance floor that extended all the way from one side of the ballroom to the other.
A wedding without Mom
Our wedding had a very young and energetic vibe and everyone dance the night away. To this day when I run into our guest they talk about how much fun they had at our wedding. However our wedding was not just about having fun and dancing, there were also many emotions and many emotional moments involved.
Payam’s mom passed away two years ago. It was very heart breaking for Payam and I that his mom would not be there to walk him down the aisle. We cherished her memory on our wedding invites by dedicating our wedding to her and by displaying a beautiful picture of her under our chuppah and next to name cards. Her presence was felt during the entire wedding. However Payam’s dad was able to fly over 8,000 miles and walk his son down the aisle. It was very special!
Post Wedding Pictures
My wedding was everything that I had dreamed of and better. In fact I missed my wedding so much after it was over, that I really wanted to have another wedding and be a bride one more time. So I contacted my photographer and asked to do post wedding pictures, so I could wear my wedding dress one more time. We decided to do our post wedding pictures at Malibu Creek State park.
We went to our honeymoon about 3 weeks after the wedding. During our trip we visited Paris, Amsterdam, and Amalfi coast (Capri and Positano). Capri was hands down our most favorite location. We stayed at Grand Hotel Quisisana in Capri, it was basically a dream. The private boat tour we took in island of Capri was the highlight of our trip.
Advice to couples currently planning their wedding
Your wedding day will be one of the BEST days of your lives. You spend so much time planning and preparing for the wedding but the night of the wedding it will all pays off. Things may not always go as planned, but you will you laugh about all the little imprecations and every little thing that went wrong for many years and your wedding will always be perfect to you.
Sadaf & Payam’s little white book
Photography and videography – V Production
Venue – Sheraton Universal
Wedding planner – Mizban Events
Bride’s dress – Galia Lahav
Bride’s shoes – Yves Saint Laurent and Volatile Sneakers
Groom’s attire – Ted Baker , Tom Ford, Giuseppe Zanotti and Hugo Boss
Hair + Makeup – Sammy Eid and Marine Muradian
DJ – DJ Sepi
Rental – Harry’s Party Rental
Invitation and Ketubah – Signature Imprints
Honeymoon – at Grand Hotel Quisisana