Emiliano and Soulmaz met in graduate school at University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA. They met at a mutual friend’s birthday party and the chase begun there. After several coffee dates, they went on an official dinner date. Although the connection was instant, it was our first official date that did them in. Ever since, they have been supporting one another through their long and grueling graduate programs, as well as, finding time to travel around the world. Several months from their wedding date, they will be celebrating five years together and look forward to many more.
The inspiration for their wedding was the merging of their two cultures (Italian/Mexican and Persian/Turkish) and thus their two families in a very unique and historical U.S. monument at the University of Virginia. Themes included “us”, in terms of the location of the event (where they met, on grounds at UVa), their officiant being a former professor of theirs and catering by Hotcakes (where they had one of their early coffee dates). Other themes included a casual, family-centered, Mediterranean garden feel with spring, pastel colored flowers with loose foliage and greenery decorated around the Colonnade Club, a historical colonial building. Guests enjoyed moving from the different rooms to the outside of the garden, nibbling on Persian pastries and Turkish tea or sipping on traditional Italian cocktails like the negroni or bellini.
Their favorite part of their wedding day was the traditional Persian ceremony. The couple sat before a Sofreh Aghd, a traditional Persian spread which includes various items that symbolize the couple’s new future together (walnuts for fertility, candles for fire, sugar canes and honey to sweeten the union). They had an ornate, traditional Venetian-styled mirror in which they gazed into as they were married. There was a very talented family friend who played the tar, a long-necked traditional Persian string-instrument as our officiate, UVa Professor and Literature/Gender Studies legend, Dr. Farzaneh Miliani officiated the wedding. She spoke of Italian, English and Persian poets – the language of love and the unique union of their families. The Sofreh Aghd spread was breathtaking, the music was enchanting and Dr. Milani’s words were forever inspiring. It was a very beautiful moment.
Whats next after you’re married? Luckily, we have been able to travel together to a handful of different countries in Europe and North America. For our honeymoon, we will be traveling to the Middle East for the first time together and for our first trip as a married couple.
Now that you are married, what words of advice do you have for couples getting married? You should quickly and readily adopt the view “If it rains on your wedding day – it’s good luck!”
Bride & Groom: Soulmaz & Emiliano
Venue for the Ceremony & Reception: The Colonnade Club, Pavilion VII, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA.
Officiant:Dr. Farzaneh Milani (Professor at University of Virginia, Chair of Mid-East and South Asian Studies Department)
Wedding Coordinator: Lisa McEwan
Ceremony Music: Amin
Videographer: JC Vera
Catering: Hot Cakes
Cake: Hot Cakes
Florist: Hedge Fine Blooms
Makeup Artist: Naghmeh (Melody) Moadab
Hair Stylist: Mahogany at Salon Cielo
Dress: Bridal Elegance in Richmond, Virginia