A Contemporary Mexican Fiesta Wedding at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico

Esli (23 and a community health worker) and Jonathan (23 and a polysomnographic technician) met in middle school, then years later fell in love. Both proud Mexican Americans, Esli and Jonathan knew they wanted their wedding to be a personalized Mexican fiesta. “We used elements from a traditional fiesta Mexicana such as papel picado (paper banners), bright colors in the bright coral of the bridesmaid dresses, and orange roses," Esli says. "We also used traditional Mexican Loteria cards, instead of numbers, for table assignments. The theme went well with our venue.” They chose the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico, “a place that highlights and celebrates our heritage, traditions and culture.” Esli and Jonathan wanted a bilingual ceremony; they were married in Spanish, and the pastor's wife translated it into English. It was important to them to include their families on their big day, so Esli's mother created all the flower arrangements. For the reception they moved to the porch, built in the traditional style of New Mexico architecture. Esli and her aunts spent the day before the wedding decorating the space with hundreds of roses and eucalyptus. Guests were served a Mexican street-taco buffet, paired with their Esli's and Jonathan's mothers' signature salsas, and Esli's brother iced the wedding cakes. —Jen Leahy