As an integral member of both the family and brand, Kirk Kara’s daughter, Angela Karaguezian Kassabian, epitomizes inspiration and passion when it comes to heritage and tradition. The Kirk Kara brand was founded on the principles of handcrafted perfection that Kirk’s grandfather established in his small workshop in 1890. To this day, Kirk Kara remains a family-operated brand that views quality and heritage as strands of the same cord; equally important because they originated in the same place. As a leader of a legacy-driven brand that personifies romance in every design, Angela made sure that her 2016 wedding captured the essence of her Armenian heritage.
Angela and Raffi Kassabian’s wedding ceremony was held at the beautiful St. Peter Armenian Apostolic Church, a place that the family has frequented for decades. The ancient traditions of this church and its architectural style — domed ceilings, breathtaking frescoes, carvings, and sculptures — date back to at least the 6th century. St. Peter has served the San Fernando Valley Armenian community for more than 50 year. The magnificently detailed architecture and longstanding history of the Armenian church is a true testament to the power and perseverance of Armenia’s heritage and culture.
The couple’s choice to have a traditional Armenian ceremony in this grand sanctuary was unsurprising given their shared culture, respect for values and tradition, as well as Angela’s family legacy of handcrafted, vintage-inspired design.
The elegant ceremony culminated with the iconic Rite of Crowning. This ritual signifies the glory and honor that God gives to the bride and groom during the sacrament. The crown is a symbol of sacrifice and rule over the home, which is the couple’s kingdom. The newlyweds pledge to rule their kingdom with wisdom, justice, and integrity, and prepare for the challenges of the compromises both will make to benefit one another.
Armenian tradition surrounds the bride with young flower girls rather than bridesmaids. Angela’s flower girls were breathtaking in delicate white lace and festive floral crowns. Her sister, Grace, was the Matron of Honor, and her niece, Alexa, was among the six chosen flower girls.
At the reception, which was held at the stately Langham Huntington Hotel in Pasadena, a troupe of traditional Armenian dancers in exquisitely beaded costumes delighted guests prior to the couple’s grand entrance as newly minted husband and wife. A jubilant celebration followed, with a live Armenian band playing traditional instruments and an electric violinist playing both traditional and modern Armenian melodies. Guests also enjoyed traditional Armenian cuisine during the cocktails and appetizers portion of the evening.
The beautifully detailed blush and gold invitations were laser-cut to match the intricate floral detail of Angela’s vintage-style Monique Lhuillier gown. The custom invitation was worded in both Armenian and English, and guests traveled from all over the world to share in the couple’s unbridled joy.
From the buoyant Armenian music and dance to the beautifully traditional church ceremony, every detail of Angela’s and Raffi’s magnificent wedding reflected a genuine devotion to both family and their beloved Armenian heritage.