Bright and airy, with lots of natural light, these were the requirements Marjia and Ali were trying to fill when looking for a venue and they found it in spades with Villa Vänhem. This gorgeous Swedish venue was the perfectly stunning backdrop of their big day which focused around their Sofreh Aghd, a traditional Persian wedding ceremony.
Keep scrolling to see some of our very favorite shots taken by the talented Karin Lundin and to hear more about this couple's heartwarming love story. Oh and as always be sure to check out the full gallery for even more photos.
We were looking for a barn-like venue with a lot of light. Villa Vänhem on the Swedish west coast had everything we were looking for! We could have both our party and wedding in the room as it is divided into different parts. The glass veranda is the part of the room where both the wedding ceremony and the party took place. And the dining room is a dream with high arched windows and high ceilings.
Our theme can be summed up with Boho-Luxe. We wanted the day to reflect both of our different personalities where I'm wilder and Ali more grounded. The free spiritual feeling would be combined with a clear structure of form and design.
We were close friends for many years and sought love in different places. We supported each other through relationships that did not last and through happy moments in life. One day everything changed, and it was like seeing each other for the first time. The happiness, the love and the depth that we both were looking for were right in front of our eyes. There he stood, clearer than ever. And he had been there for so many years without me really seeing him. It was a friendship that exploded into true eternal love and happiness. I knew from that second that it would be us forever. After 6 years as a couple, on a winter trip to Sydney, he asked if I wanted to be his wife.
We wanted to pay tribute to the Persian tradition and chose to have a Persian wedding ceremony; Sofreh Aghd. There are several symbolic objects that make up a Sofreh Aghd. Tableware and all items represent a part of the couple's new life and marriage together. The word "Sofreh" means cloth and "Aghd" means marriage. With the help of our florist, we were able to make our Sofreh Aghd unique so that it could reflect our personalities while celebrating my husband's Persian descent.
The traditional items placed on Sofreh Aghd:
Mirror: Symbolizes that light should be reflected into the couple's future life together.
Candles / Candelabra: Symbolizes energy & heat for the couple's life together.
Assortment of seven symbolic herbs & spices: To protect against the "evil eye".
Persian Bread: A decorative creation of the Persian bread symbolizes prosperity for the wedding & the couple's life together.
Eggs and nuts: Symbolizes fertility and abundance for the couple.
Fruit: Represents a happy future for the bride and groom.
Crystallized Sugar and Pastry: Symbolizes a sweet life for the newlyweds.
Honey: Consumed directly when the ceremony ends by the bride & groom replacing the little finger dipped in the honey. The honey symbolizes that the bridal couple's life should be surrounded by sweetness.
Rose water: Used to perfume the air in the couple's life.
Coins: Symbolizes wealth for the couple.
Persian poem book "Hafez": A book of love poems desired for the couple
The wedding cloth: A lace cloth held over the couple's head throughout the ceremony by various happily married female relatives / friends or the bridesmaids.
Sugar cones: Used during the ceremony by a friend / relative dice rubbing the cones against each other over the marriage cloth held over the pair. This symbolizes that the couple's life and marriage should be soaked with sweetness.
Needle & thread: Symbolizes that two people and families are united.
Wild Herb: An herb burned in an oil burner. This symbolizes purity and should drive away negativity.
Advice to others
Enjoy each other! Take a break from time to time, hold each other's hands, look each other in the eyes, kiss each other for a long time and let yourself be filled with the love of each other and your families and friends.
Rings - $45 000
Venue/food/cake - $18 000
Florals/decorations/stationary - $12 000
Video - $2500
Photographer - $4000
Dresses including bridesmaids - $3400
Suits including best man's - $1800
Liquor - $2200
Entertainment - $2400
Wedding Coordinator - $2100
Other costs (spa, decor, makeup/hair, trips, accommodation, transport, etc) - $6 600