Vegan Weddings 2010: Sadaf Hussain & Brandon Juhl

From multi-tiered cakes to the perfect honeymoon, eight couples share their secrets to throwing an unforgettable celebration.

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Sadaf Hussain & Brandon Juhl
Mercer Island, Wash.

Guests: 65
Pricetag: $10,500
Honeymoon: Morocco and Spain
Words of wisdom: “Stick to your guns about it being a strictly vegan wedding. Enjoy the day—even though things may not be perfect, have faith that everything will work out for.”

Their story: If Sadaf and Brandon’s relationship had a flavor, it would most likely be lemongrass, since they began, cemented, and catered their courtship (and wedding!) with Thai food. They struck up a conversation at a Seattle Vegan Meetup event at Araya’s Place, a vegan Thai restaurant (which apparently also moonlights as a matchmaking service). As regulars on the Seattle vegan scene, they met a few times before having a lengthy conversation and realizing they shared much more than just a passion for pad thai. By the third date, the couple was talking commitment, putting marriage on the table right next to the sri racha. A few months later, Brandon professed his love in Urdu, Sadaf’s native language, before popping the question. Of the role of veganism in their life, Brandon says, “Our vegan lifestyle is one of the foundational values of our marriage and our life together, reflecting peace, harmony, compassion, and respect for every living being, including each other.”

The wedding: Sadaf and Brandon’s celebrations spanned several weeks and continents. Opting to honor Sadaf’s Muslim heritage, they began with a henna ceremony to bring good luck to the couple and beautify the bride. The nuptials took place the next day. In an intimate wedding ceremony at the groom’s childhood home on Mercer Island, the couple exchanged roses along with their rings. They promised to use the flower in the future whenever they find words won’t suffice to express their feelings. The reception for other friends and family was catered, naturally, by Araya’s Place. Sadaf, an avid belly dancer, asked her friends to perform at the reception. One of their most memorable dances was the rice ceremony, where the couple ran their fingers through a bowl of uncooked rice, stirring up pieces of paper that had been adorned with words like “happiness,” “health,” and “good food,” while the dancers showered them with white and red rose petals. With their Stateside celebrations complete, Sadaf and Brandon headed to Tangier, Morocco, where they had their Nikkah (Muslim ceremony) at a beachside resort. With the ocean roaring alongside them, the couple exchanged vows they had written for each other, completing the last stage of their commitment ceremonies and beginning the rest of their adventure à deux.

The Menu
Henna Party
Artichoke and spinach dip
Caesar “chicken” salad
Basmati rice with peas
Pakistani faux meatball curry (Koftai)
Vegan vanilla and German chocolate cupcakes
Fresh and fried vegetable spring rolls with sweet and sour sauce
Tofu pot stickers
Tofu satay on rosemary skewers with peanut sauce
Mango salad
Meing–kum (leaf stuffed with dried and fresh vegetables, fruits, and nuts)
Main Course
Phad Thai
Pineapple fried rice
Pineapple curry
Basil fried rice
Phad Phet Makhua (eggplant curry)
Three-tiered vanilla Cake
Lemon and Raspberry Cupcakes

For a complete list of caterers, dressmakers, and photographers from each of this year’s wedding couples, visit our 2010 Guide to Vegan WeddingsWant more vegan weddings? Purchase our special wedding issue featuring Sadaf and Brandon’s vegan wedding! Check out all of our 2010 vegan wedding couples here, 2019 couples here, 2018 couples here, 2017 couples here, our 2016 couples here, our 2014 couples here, our 2012 couples here, and 2011 couples here

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