30 July 2017 Fes, Morocco
Our wedding day
Many of you have asked me about details and photos of my wedding. In this post I’m going to share with you everything you wanted to know and if you are not Moroccan you will also learn what a Moroccan wedding looks like.
Our Moroccan wedding was about colors, food, music, dresses, traditions, friends, family, sharing feelings and most importantly LOVE.
Normally, the marriage celebration in Morocco includes several well organised ceremonies that can last from three days to one week, depending on the family and also on which part of Morocco you are. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to celebrate all the week with my family and friends, first of all because we didn’t got married in my hometown, and secondly because my husband is not Moroccan. Given that my husband’s family and friends came from abroad, we had to choose the best location for everyone. Fes was the best spot for both of us.
We celebrated 2 days. First the “ Hammam “ day, second the wedding day. We included the Henna ceremony in the wedding day. In addition to that brides are supposed to wear between three to seven Kaftans. In my case I wore five. Do you wanna know which ones? Keep reading and you will find out about all of them.
I know you are wondering what is a “Hammam“ day. That’s the day before the wedding. I went to a Moroccan traditional Hammam, with my friends, relatives and also the girlfriends of my husband who came from Barcelona. My husband and his friends went to the Hammam as well but they were in the men’s side. It was their first time.They were even more excited than me, the bride!
We did the Oriental Hammam, which contained body scrub, soaping and body sculpting. This is considered an act of purification. After enjoying the bath and the massage I wore a White Caftan which is a Moroccan dress, and a white sparkling slipper. I had also to put a handmade foot bracelet that contained “Serghina” a mix of some dried plants that was supposed to protect me from the bad eye.
While I was in the Hammam. My family were at home already dancing, singing, playing different Moroccan instruments and waiting for me to arrive. Once I was there, my mom and everyone was at the door hugging me and singing, mom was holding a plate of Moroccan delicious dates and a glass of milk. It’s all about traditions. We kept dancing and singing until midnight, then it was time to go to bed because there was a big day waiting for us and we needed to get some rest.
After the Hammam day I was ready to celebrate my wedding day that started at 9 pm and finished at 7am.
The entrance of the wedding salon was decorated with lanterns, candles, rose petals, long red carpets and chandeliers. At the entrance, my parents were welcoming everyone that has arrived and giving them the dates and milk. This is a tradition that brings fertility and good luck. Every time someone entered into the salon, there was a traditional band playing and singing.
My husband arrived with his friends and family, everyone looked so classy wearing nice european dresses, but his sister Neus was killing it with a beautiful Moroccan Kaftan, she looked stunning.
My family and friends looked amazing in their wonderful fancy Moroccan dresses. While they were taking pictures and checking out the wedding place, I was up stairs in a room waiting for “ Neggafate ”, they are the wedding master planners, no wedding ceremony can occur without their presence. The tradition is to stay in that room until the boss of Neggafate arrives and then they can start dressing me up with traditional Moroccan dresses and help me wear jewelry and crowns, shoes, also organise the “ Farash “ which is a traditional couch where I sat with my husband and the Amaria which is a throne where they carried me (the pictures describe it better than I do). At the end their main task is to assist me to look at my best.
My family and my husband were greeting the guests as they arrived at the wedding. Once the room was filled with guests, the musicians marched in and the music soon had everyone dancing. It was time for me to show up. My first Kaftan was a golden wonderful traditional dress, retained with a wide golden belt at the waist, with a matching jewelry and a crown that added a stunning touch to the moment.
The Neggafate prepared the Amaria and four strong men to carry me. Then we headed towards the Amaria, the group of ladies were singing an islamic blessing, (and this song will praise Allah as a way of countering all of the praise going to the bride). And all the guests headed to the entrance to see me, I walked to get into the Amaria, once I was ready, they presented me on the golden Amaria, I still remember the feeling I had at that moment, I was shaking, so nervous, looking at my parents and brothers crying, I was trying to hold my tears… looking at my husband’s happy face, I had a mix of feelings, joy, nervousness, everything…
That was the first time my husband saw me since the Hemam day, he told me how much I looked beautiful and that he loved everything I organized, decoration and everything …he was so impressed by the traditions, the bands, my look…
We stood in front of the Amaria to take pictures together, then they carried me. My husband was walking in front of the Amaria presenting me to all of the guests. I remember they spent so much time carrying me and dancing, around the wedding room, everyone was looking at me, taking pictures. I could see how happy they were, throwing me flowers, it was a very special moment, I could say the entrance was my favorite part.
After almost 45 min of touring the large guest room, accompanied by music from a live traditional band. It was time to descend from Amaria and join my husband who was in the Farrach or in other words the traditional couch centered in the middle of the room, waiting for me to go and sit next to him, again we posed to take pictures with all our friends and family, they were wishing us a happy life together and gave us blessings.
A few minutes later, it was time to go and change to the second dress, which was the dinner dress. While I was in the room changing, I missed so much fun, I was hearing all the guests dancing all together, the dancing began in an enthusiastic manner and eventually became frenetic! I was telling the Neggafate “please can I just keep the same dress and go down to enjoy my wedding”. they had that serious face, I could read the answer in their eyes, which was a NO!
While they were preparing me, the chef was preparing the tables and the exotic Moroccan dishes to serve dinner. The Neggafate called my husband to present me again with my second stunning blue dress. The dinner tradition is to pass through all the guest’s tables and welcome them, while everyone was sitting and waiting. Me and my husband passed by every table to thank them for sharing this joyful day with us, especially to the ones that travelled in overseas for our wedding.
Once we finished the tour, we finally sat in the central table. Then the show began, the waiters started serving the meals in a traditional way. The first dish was Pastille, (a pie in puff pastry stuffed with a fricassee of chicken and almonds), second one was Mashwi (baby lamb), with side dishes as Moroccan salads that were made with a unique ingredients, and croquettes.
Of course a Moroccan dinner can’t be without mint tea. After the Mashwi came the ice cream, that was my favorite part. And last but not least a big plate full of all the type of fruits. That was only dinner, but in fact they didn’t stop serving food and drinks during all the ceremony till the end of the wedding.
After enjoying our delicious dinner, it was time to continue dancing. Given that dancing is a major part of a Moroccan wedding, it occurs during all the wedding. We danced all together, I was very surprised how my husband’s family and friends managed to follow the rhythm of a Moroccan band, they didn’t stop dancing. As the tempo of the music increased, the dancers became a blur of light and colour!
My husband’s friends and family were impressed by the traditions, the dresses, jewelry and all the details and I completely understand why! That made me exultant because I wouldn’t have liked to see them bored.
What made the wedding special is that while not all the guests shared the same language or culture, they shared a love for us and an excitement to celebrate.
After dinner I had to stop dancing and go change to the third dress, and get ready for the Henna ceremony. The Henna, is a very special part of the wedding. It’s dress, the throne, jewelry, music, and the band. Even the band and the Neggafate had to change their outfit to match with mine, the color of this ceremony is green. Why green? Basically because it’s the same color as the Henna, and also because it brings a blessings, luck and joy, although it is also seen as a beauty enhancer.
I was wearing a long green Kaftan designed with golden silks, a big golden crown that has green perles, and a long veil that symbolizes the purity of the beauty possessed by the bride, I was accompanied with four women holding the Henna materials in a traditional sachet, the band was behind us playing and singing, I was walking down the stairs slowly, counting my steps, looking at my husband’s smile. I could see the excitement he had in his eyes, almost all of the guests came to see me, everyone was taking photos of me. I’ve never had this much of attention in my whole life, I felt like a princess. It was a great feeling, but in the same time I got so anxious that my hands were sweating.
My last step was towards my husband’s hand, at that moment he didn’t see my face yet, the tradition is to take off the veil once I sat in the Amaria. So we just stood there and smiled for everybody, taking pictures. Then they brought the Amaria and I got into it for another tour. They carried me again, and started walking around the whole wedding room, I was smiling and waving to everybody, it was such a splendid moment.
Afterwards, they put me down and walked me to the Farash, I was ushered out to greet all of my smiling supporters and seated in the center of the salon to let the henna ritual begin.
The Henaya (the woman that does the Henna), started applying the Henna, she asked me if I wanted to do it also in my feet, but I said no, because if not I could have spent all the party sitting with my hands in the air and feet propped up for about four hours, letting the henna dry.
I choose a Berber Henna, to represent my region. Then it was time for my husband to get his Henna done, he got an eye in his palm.
The band was playing a specific traditional Henna music, I really couldn’t resist since all my family and friends were singing and dancing with the band, I grabbed my husband’s hand and went to the dance floor, that was also one of the highlights of the night, we had so much fun. I was overwhelmed by the happiness in the room. Hands were waving, hands were painted, hands were expressing and everything was just beautiful, in the deepest sense you can imagine.
After the Henna ceremony started the “FASSIA”, which is the last traditional part of a Moroccan wedding. The dress I was wearing also called “FASSIA” which basically refers to the city of Fes. I know it looks weird or you can even see it as Amidala’s dress from Star Wars haha. But it isn’t, this is a dress that every Moroccan girl wishes to wear in her wedding.
As you can see in the pictures, the FASSIA dress is a mix between gold and green color, it’s a very heavy dress my neck was about to break, but even if it is still considered as my favorite traditional dress. I barely could walk, I was counting the steps to arrive and just sit in the throne, this time both of us were carried. My husband and I had a wonderful experience.
After lots of sitting and being carried around it was time to start the modern part that was the last part of my wedding. It was a big change from traditional dresses, crowns and thrones to a beautiful simple white dress.
My bridesmaids wore blue, they looked so pretty in their blue dresses. I felt so blessed to see all my friends and cousins there with me. I holded my father’s hand, all my maids of honor were behind me, I wanted to cry at that moment, it was such a sensitive scene, even my father was crying… My husband was nervously, and excitedly waiting downstairs. Once we were down, my father hugged me and gave my hand to my husband.
Before cutting the delicious cake, we first did our Romantic / Afro dance,while we were dancing, we were surrounded but everyone, clapping for us and singing with us. Then they joined us at the end and we danced all together. Afterwards it was time to bring the cake and cut it. We did that, took some photos, and then I told everybody that now I won’t stop dancing till the end of the wedding and that’s what happened. I enjoyed the chance to dance till 7 Am.
We spent the rest of the night dancing to African beats, reggaeton and all types of music. As I said before what made our wedding special, is sharing happiness and love and fun despite the difference of cultures they had.
I hope you enjoyed reading about my wedding and about my traditions.
Do you want to feel like a princess and have the best wedding ever? Then you must have a Moroccan wedding.
And if you have any questions regarding the details of the wedding, leave a comment and I’ll answer to it.