Syrian refugee comes to the rescue of Canadian bride's wedding dress

Jo Du had a malfunction with her dress, but Ibrahim Halil Dudu, a master tailor from Aleppo, had just moved in next door

 by Nadia Khomami for The Guardian
Ibrahim Halil Dudu fixing the zip on Jo Du’s wedding dress. The Syrian tailor and his family were being hosted by neighbour David Hobson and had only moved in four days previously.
Ibrahim Halil Dudu fixing the zip on Jo Du’s wedding dress. The Syrian tailor and his family were being hosted by neighbour David Hobson and had only moved in four days previously. Photograph: Lindsay Coulter

Hours before her wedding ceremony, Jo Du suffered a wardrobe malfunction – the zip on her wedding dress broke and none of her bridesmaids knew how to fix it or where to find a tailor on a Sunday.

The wedding photographer, Lindsay Coulter, noticed that the man next door to the house they had rented in Guelph, Ontario, for the wedding had his garage door open and suggested that a bridesmaid run over to ask for a pair of pliers.

In a serendipitous turn of events, it emerged that the neighbour, David Hobson, had been hosting a family of Syrian refugees for the past four days and that the father, Ibrahim Halil Dudu, had worked as a tailor in Aleppo for 28 years.

Coulter shared the “incredible situation” on her Facebook page earlier this week.

She wrote that Halil Dudu was a master tailor who said he would be happy to help if the wedding party weren’t successful. “After a few minutes of further attempts there was a knock on the door and the neighbour along with the tailor and his son arrived to help, sewing kit in tow,” she said, and within minutes Halil Dudu was putting the finishing stitches on the bride’s dress.

“The neighbour David told me they had just moved to Canada four days ago,” Coulter added. “They didn’t speak a word of English, and had been communicating by using Google Translate. The young boy looked at his dad, the girls around him, at my camera and back to his dad about a hundred times. He was curious and in seemingly good spirits. I couldn’t help but stand back in awe of the situation.”

The groom, Earl Lee, expressed his gratitude and told CTV: “We’re so lucky that happened to us.” Halil Dudu said through a translator: “I was so excited and so happy. I like to help Canadian people from my heart.”

Jo Du before her wedding.
Jo Du before her wedding. Photograph: Lindsay Coulter Photography/lindsaycoulterphoto.com
In her post, which has been shared more than 7,000 times, Coulter continued: “Every weekend I take photos of people on the happiest day of their lives, and today one man who has seen some of the worst things our world has to offer came to the rescue. I am so proud to live in Canada, a country has opened our doors to refugees countless times.

“I’m in awe of the families who have welcomed these strangers into their homes and lives, and I’m inspired by the resilience of the Syrian people. We are truly blessed.”

She has received hundreds of positive comments from those touched by the story. One commenter, Leen Hasani, a Syrian, wrote: “Reading these kind and heartwarming words prove to me that there are still good hearted humans out there, especially the Canadian community. It may seem like it’s just a Facebook comment to a lot of people, but your words were powerful enough to restore our faith in finding happiness and self worth all over again.”

Another commenter, Carlos Azevedo, offered Halil Dudu a five thread table sewing machine for free so that he could continue his work in Canada


Be the first to comment

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.