Sweeties, join us on a sentimental journey through Kiran & Raaji's wedding, a tale woven with love, culture, and unity. The Horseshoe Bay Resort's Yacht Club Ballroom was the perfect setting for a beautiful wedding planned by Elan Weddings. Dream Décors Design House decorated the venue with beautiful, elegant flowers that awe every guest. Rabia Rehman elegantly transformed Kiran into a divine beauty with her artistic touch. When Kiran extended her henna-imprinted hands adorned in shimmering jewelry from Poshak Houston, the universe paused before a masterpiece by Mehnaz Ranmal. As the sun set, the esteemed guests were escorted to Horseshoe Bay Resort's Granite Ballroom, wrapped in unity and cultural richness. Our dear Kiran transformed into the queen of the night, wearing a dress that reflected the starry sky from Panache by Sharmeen. DJ Riz Entertainment spun magic into the air with each note, a whisper of the lovers' eternal bond; each light reflected their undying flame. He seamlessly blended rhythms and hues, crafting an atmosphere where tradition and modernity danced perfectly. Rizwan Ghumro Studios' masterful lens captured every smile, touch, and vow amidst the blend of tradition and modern elegance. Enjoy the gallery!
How did you meet your Groom and when did you know he was "the one"?
Raaji and I met at the University of Oklahoma when I was a freshman and he was a sophomore, and we quickly developed a friendship. We exchanged numbers a few months after getting to know each other and began talking almost every day. From studying at the library to participating in community camps to being each other’s confidants, we became inseparable but never truly thought our best friendship would turn into a relationship. After 1.5 years of being best friends, we realized we had stronger feelings than either one of us expected – lo and behold, 9+ years later, we’re married!
Tell us how you went about planning your wedding, and your overall experience with the Venues, Hair & Makeup, Outfits, Decor Theme, and all of the other important details.
Like most brides, I had a vision of how I wanted my wedding to look since I was 10, but when I started dating Raaji, that vision began to evolve into a style that incorporated elements from both of our personalities. Being avid travelers, we knew right off the bat we wanted a destination wedding, but as we began working through logistics, our “destination wedding” ended up being only 3 hours from where we lived. We had a simple goal for our wedding weekend: host a party and a vacation for our guests, and that’s exactly what we did.
Horseshoe Bay was at the top of our list when we began venue searching. This was the first venue we visited, but even after visiting another 10, we knew our hearts were stuck on HSBR. From the waterfront venue to the California feel, we knew we had to get married here. Once our contract was signed, we were paired with an Event Manager who made sure (almost) all of our wedding must-haves came true. Once we finalized the venue for all 3 events, we got into the specifics – sending save the dates, hair and make-up, outfits, and all the fun details that follow. Everything after finalizing our venue felt like a piece of cake.
For our save the dates, we wanted them to reflect what we loved most – traveling. After finding a local photographer in New York, we spent a weekend in our favorite parts of the city to capture our love. New York had always been my favorite city, but being able to share it with Raaji over the years made it that much more special.
After saving the dates, we started an extensive search for planners. Because I enjoy the planning process a little, I knew I needed a 3 month planner/day of coordinator to ensure our perfect weekend went off without a hitch. After a few interviews with other planners, we came across Mariam at Elan Weddings. She was direct, answered all of our questions, and came highly recommended – it also helped that we were similar in age, so I knew I could bounce ideas off of her without worrying she had a dated point of view. Investing in a planner (and, more importantly, in Mariam & her team), was one of the best decisions we made. Our wedding had many pivots and Mariam executed each one with a smile.
Hair & makeup, outfits, and décor were elements I had “pinned” early on, and finding the perfect vendors to make it all come to life took months of research – hair and makeup is an important one. It’s difficult finding a HAMU artist who will jive with not only you but your husband + family and will make you feel and look flawless. Rabia Rehman from Austin glammed me every night and made me feel pretty. Not only that, she glammed our immediate families the first two nights as well and did an incredible job of keeping true to everyone’s taste and aesthetic.
How did you select your bridal lengha or wedding dress? Did you have a favorite color in mind?
For my bridal (reception) lengha, I knew I had to go with Panache by Sharmeen. She helped create my sister’s lengha 6 years prior and for those 6 years, I knew she would make mine next. I wanted a fusion reception lengha that incorporated both parts of my life (Pakistani & American) and meshed it all into one outfit, so a white lengha was pretty much a no-brainer. I fell in love with a lengha she had previously designed, but over a few months, I was able to make customizations to her already incredible design, including adding an embroidered K&R on my sleeve to surprise my husband. I highly recommend choosing Sharmeen as your designer – she was kind and patient through the process as I made my final decisions many months after I had put in my initial order. That said, since I was already planning on doing a white lengha for my reception, I decided to go with a light champagne color for my Nikkah sari, which I bought from Almas Tejani. She was able to add a dupatta veil to my order at the last minute to ensure my ceremony outfit was complete.
What did your guests particularly love about your Wedding?
We think our guests loved three things:
First, they appreciated staying onsite at the venue and using the downtime to vacation. The pools, restaurants, golf courses, and pickleball courts were heavily visited by our guests. Many times, we forget to take time out for ourselves and disconnect, so our hope was that our guests would get a moment to relax throughout the weekend when possible (and we made sure the timing of our events allowed for it!). We even had a few guests check out a state park nearby for a few hours of hiking. Operation forces people into a vacation – check.
Second, we made it a point to make every night a party that guests of all ages could enjoy. The first night ended 2 hours early due to a hail storm, but that didn’t stop us from continuing the festivities in the resort's common spaces. Aunties and uncles continued celebrating/dancing in the hospitality suite while the younger guests mingled in the restaurant area. On our final night, we decided to forego our sparkler exit and maximize time with our loved ones on the dance floor and kept the party going until 1 a.m. Every night ended with a bang and a party that no one would forget!
Lastly, we created a WhatsApp chat for our guests to keep them updated with event timings, transportation, etc., and only my planner, husband, and I had access to send messages. This helped keep all guests in the know, especially being in a large resort where you can lose track of time. With last-minute changes to our venue locations due to weather, the WhatsApp chat was highly appreciated in regards to organization.
Was there a really special moment in your wedding that constantly replays in your mind?
Ahead of our ceremony, Raaji and I did a first look at each other, followed by private vows. The moment was sweet, special, and intimate – a memory that only we’re able to carry before our actual ceremony with all of our favorite people. Looking back, that was the one moment where we were able to take in all of our emotions, away from ceremonies and rituals, and express our love to each other.
Do you have any words of wisdom for Brides-To-Be?
Sometimes, it gets overwhelming, but enjoy the process with your soon-to-be husband. The wedding should be reflective of who you both are as a couple and should incorporate both personalities. I’ll share the advice I was given going into my wedding weekend – think of 3 non-negotiables over the weekend. If anything goes wrong outside of those 3 things, it’s out of your hands, and you should not have to worry about it. I didn’t have 3, but my 2 were to maximize time with my husband during and outside of the wedding events and ensure both sides of the family had a great time. Anything that happened outside of spending time with Raaji or ensuring our families were happy was out of my scope and could not (entirely) ruin my mood.
Darlings, I hope you enjoyed reading about our Maharani brides and their inspiring weddings!