Anam and Joshua met in an accounting class at George Mason University during their last year of college – the pair are actually now both accountants! Anam is Pakistani, Joshua is American but they both grew up in Northern Virginia. Their wedding took place in May 2015 at The Westin Crystal City.
“When we decided to get married, my parents insisted on doing it the traditional way! Joshua’s parents came over for tea and they formally asked my parents. It was very cute as this was a completely different experience for them but they were so great throughout the whole occasion.”
The wedding day
“I was very calm the whole day! My brothers bought me my favorite breakfast and I was able to relax with my sister and cousins for the majority of the afternoon. We all got ready together in my hotel room; we laughed and made jokes the whole time, so much so that even my photographer and make-up artist were laughing along with us. The actual wedding was pulled off beautifully. We got started a little late (as in typical desi tradition!) but once we got going it was a blast. We began with the ceremony, followed by a wonderful dinner, and then danced the night away! My favorite part was doing the cha-cha slide with our family and friends.”
Wedding planning obstacles
“We didn’t face any obstacles in particular but the entire wedding was truly the result of our families’ love and efforts. We had an abundance of help; my brothers made all the centerpieces (30 tables!), our cousins put together our wedding favors and other decor, our parents coordinated the food and banquet hall, and on and on. Perhaps the one reason we didn’t face any real obstacle was because our families were so supportive and enthusiastic to help.”
Is it harder to plan a wedding when the couples are from different faiths or culture? Advice to give to other multicultural couples:
“I think it depends on the families involved. In my experience, the phrase “when you marry someone, you marry their family” has never rang truer than with a multicultural marriage! Our families were very involved throughout our planning process and their guidance meant very much to us. Everyone had different ideas as to what our wedding would look like. In the end, we took bits and pieces from everyone’s advice but definitely made it our own as well. There has to be a deep sense of understanding and respect from both sides to make it work.
Compromise is a must as you keep the other party’s traditions, beliefs, and feelings in mind. These people will be your family soon so it’s important that you can all cooperate and have a great time together. Lastly, your fiancé should be your ally, not your adversary! Coming from different faiths/cultures didn’t stop you from falling love so it shouldn’t stop you from being able to plan your wedding. Always try to remember who you two are as a couple and what brought you together in the first place.”
Wedding Dress/Jewellery: I went back to Pakistan to get my dress and jewellery custom made. It was very special as it was the same dress shop and tailor who made my mom’s wedding dress over 25 years ago!
Shoes: “Blue” – Betsey Johnson
Hair & Makeup: Styles by Swati
Photography: Akbar Sayed Photography
Venue: The Westin Crystal City
DJ: DJ Kush
Decor: Imperial Decor