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About the Authors
Apoorv Kalra is the Co-Founder of BollywoodShaadis.com Group. He is an MBA in Marketing from University of Texas at Dallas and has been a part of the Internet industry for over five years. As a passionate young entrepreneur and spokesperson in the field of wedding planning and search marketing, Mr. Kalra has introduced several technological innovations in the Indian wedding industry. He is a visionary with a keen eye for the most intricate details. This book is his attempt at helping the public who feel quite lost when planning a marriage. Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt Ltd owns India’s largest network of Information resource portals for the soon-to-be married.
Vidhi Agrawal is the Sr. Editor at Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. She has been associated with the company since June 2010, writing actively about the various aspects of wedding planning, trends and traditions. Endowed with a curious mind and a creative bent, Ms. Vidhi’s experience in the wedding planning and online publishing industry came in handy during the compilation of the “Step by step Wedding Planning Guide.”
Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
Introduction Pre-Wedding Preparations
Choosing the Marriage Venue Types of Wedding according to Location The Wedding Theme The Guest List The Invitation Cards Arrangement for your Outstation Guests
On the Wedding Day
The Food and Beverages Photography and Videography Decorations Choosing the Marriage officiant
Post- Wedding Events
The Wedding Reception The Wedding Toast Gift and Favours The Honeymoon
Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
. Ltd.Deciding on Apparel and Accessories The Wedding attire for the bride and the groom The Bride’s trousseau Music and Entertainment Bachelor/ Bachelorette parties The Mehendi The Sangeet The Baraat The Reception More Entertainment mantra Indian Marriages: Some Facts Some fun facts Well known superstitions Important Legal Formalities Marriage acts and Registration of marriages The Countdown Begins 12 Months to go 10 Months to go 4 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. All Rights Reserved.
Ltd. . All Rights Reserved. 9 Months to go 7 Months to go 3 Months to go 2 Months to go 1 Months to go 10 Days to go 1 Day to go Things that can go wrong Wedding Traditions of India Religious weddings Regional weddings Wedding vows 5 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
. Ltd. All Rights Reserved.” Brahma Sutras. the fountainhead of Vedanta 6 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.Introduction “When the one man loves the one woman and the one woman loves the one man. the very angels desert heaven and come and sit in that house and sing for joy.
So. then stay tuned. All Rights Reserved.Wedding is the most sacred union of two hearts and souls eternally in a revered connubial knot. the number of invitees can be anywhere between 500 and 5000. there are several customs and rituals associated with it which needs to be taken care of. It must be remembered that Indian customs are very diverse. It marks the beginning of a new phase in the life of a couple and adds meaning to their relationship. an Indian wedding involves large number of people. then congratulations! We are here to help you out with the marriage preparations. extended and even remote members. An Indian wedding is much like a festival with lot of glimmer and full of fun and excitement. But marrying in Indian style is not a cakewalk. 7 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Further. still planning is required to honour close friends and family members. if you are planning to organize a lavish Indian wedding for yourself. If the couple has opted for a simple. Grand Indian weddings are in fashion and are liked and appreciated throughout the world because of their gleam and charm. If you have decided to get married. We will help you as a guide and will make you aware of different kinds and patterns of weddings. want everything to be done under the huge umbrella of ‘auspiciousness’. private ceremony. Ltd. It is a union of 2 families – immediate. If the wedding is a traditional one. A typical. traditional Indian wedding can best be described as a grand-big-fat-happy-chaotic occasion. religious and family traditions. and this is true especially for the parents of the bride and the groom. Indian weddings are generally a combination of local. . what are the benefits and what are the dos and don’ts of an Indian wedding. There are several procedures to be followed and loads of arrangements that need to be done. and when it comes to marriage.
They may go by different names in different regions. you can get an overview of the different kinds of Indian weddings which are uniquely different according to religion. but their essence remains the same. and region. All Rights Reserved. Therefore. and are used regardless of whatever religion or region the bride and groom belong to. 8 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. proper planning leaves no room for confusion and mistakes. Moreover. as in. they are indigenous to the land.Planning is therefore important. . to organize everything in a systematic manner according to your requirement and budget. Since this is a season of joyful celebrations. In this wedding planning guide. or by their parents in the traditional manner. either independently by the couple. it is important to start planning for the wedding ceremony from the day the decision of marriage has been taken. certain festive customs are very Indian.
and choosing intimate. private ceremonies. . be our guest in this wedding season and take a ride through the pages to get an idea of the complete Indian Wedding. From different kinds of weddings. In this guide we will make sure you have proper understanding of each aspect of an Indian wedding. the charm of comprehensive Indian wedding remains. customs or rituals specific to family tradition. choosing the venue for getting married. More and more. or the bride and groom desire them. All Rights Reserved. Ltd. young people today are opting out of the elaborate wedding routine. So. 9 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. or the local ethos. Still. can be incorporated if the family. preparing a list of the things to buy or selecting a beautiful place for your Honeymoon we have it all in this wedding planning guide.Further.
” before the actual wedding day. All Rights Reserved. food and accommodation. the planning should start days or rather months “A man without a wife is like a vase without flowers. You have to take care of the venue. invitations. .Pre Wedding Preparation There are enormous preparations that need to be done once a couple decides to get married in the traditional Indian style. Indian rituals are also difficult and should be carried out religiously. Therefore. Ltd. guests and much more. African proverb 10 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
there is huge rush for venues. Make sure that after the booking is confirmed an advance is paid. All Rights Reserved. where the wedding commitments are made by the elders of the two families concerned. where the rates quoted are exorbitant. CHOOSING THE MARRIAGE VENUE This is a very important task. Since Indian marriages usually take place at certain auspicious times of the year. You must select the venues for the following occasions: The engagement or sagaai. This would ensure that the venue is reserved for you and would not then be given to another person. . so that the bookings can be done. Ltd. It is therefore imperative that the venue be decided well in advance. The mehendi and sangeet ceremonies. An advantage of booking in advance is that you may be able to get it at the actual rates or even a little lower as opposed to doing a last minute booking. 11 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
There is enough area for parking vehicles. If refreshments are to be served. If you are planning a wedding abroad. Further. a destination wedding locale could also serve as the honeymoon location. It fits into the budget. catering and music. All Rights Reserved. The reception. In case some necessary items/requirements have to be brought in. it should be convenient to bring them to the venue. . The services provided include adequate seating. It would be advisable to find out and fix the rate in case of exceeding the time given. Proper conveyance and transport facility is available. Usually a separate car is kept for the bride/groom and their immediate families. and all documentation is complete. and simply cannot be missed. then make sure all legal procedures are followed for visas and marriage license. Ltd. The time allotted for its use is sufficient for all the ceremonies to take place comfortably. so that no one is kept waiting. This is necessary because the time for the muhurat is to be strictly observed. Things to be considered It is easily accessible. and convenient. There are good amenities available for the event that is to be held there. including a dressing room and toilets. decoration. make sure the guest list is small since you will be bearing all expenses of travel and stay. then the venue should have the arrangements required for this. If you are planning a destination wedding. 12 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The actual wedding ceremony.
This is another reason why so much importance is given to the venue in Indian weddings. It has to be kept in mind that a wedding is a very important event in the life of a couple and their families. there have to be a place earmarked for these. In fact. Consequently. to a large extent. the parents and any family members or friends that they choose to bring with them. special living arrangements for the bridegroom/bride. along with getting all the ceremonies done in the right way. Ltd. will have to be made. sets the mood for the many ceremonies. since there are rituals that are specific to the bridegroom/bride. So. In case one of the parties is from outstation. All Rights Reserved. . the bonds between the families have to be forged. Marriage rituals starting from the sagaai to the final wedding rituals have to be performed facing a certain 13 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. once the parents decide on the venue it has to be vetted by the priest.The venue. Any hint of a wrong note can be considered inauspicious with disastrous fall-outs. so that the rituals can be performed in the right manner.
In case the two families have decided on a common venue other than their homes. Ltd. You would need to check the weather conditions to see if this idea is feasible. 14 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. All Rights Reserved. The main ceremonies should be held on a dais so that everyone can witness them. They also have the facility for providing refreshments that guests might need during the course of the ceremony. In such cases where a separate venue is chosen for the reception. . before taking the final decision on the venue and the construction of the mandap. naturally a large open area will be required which can be covered with shamianas. Kalyana mandapams or marriage halls. it is necessary to get it cleared by the priest. Therefore. the priest’s sanction is required there as well. For the main wedding ceremony Choose a religious place of worship. Community halls attached to the place of worship. canopies. tents. in case the place of worship cannot accommodate everyone. a general rule is that the venue for the reception should not be more than 20 minutes away from the venue of the marriage ceremony. since they are equipped to deal with large groups. and awnings. and it is only the priest who can ensure that. If the ceremony is planned outdoors. This enables all guests to arrive without delay.direction.
A wedding conducted according to the Special Marriage Act is usually held in the office of the Marriage Registrar. If, the bride and groom want to choose another venue where the Marriage Registrar will come, they would need to look for a venue which is licensed to hold this ceremony. In case it is decided to conduct the wedding ceremony as well as the reception in the same venue, then the choices would include: Country clubs, Farmhouses, 5-star hotels, There are some country houses which have been turned into 5-star wedding venues. They cater only to wedding groups. They are usually on the outskirts of the town, and provide accommodation and all facilities for the families, relatives and guests of the bride and groom. Both families are therefore in the same area, and it is very convenient for everyone to attend all functions. Since the chalets/cottages/rooms housing the two parties are separate, the specific functions can be performed separately as well.
OF WEDDING ACCORDING TO
India has a rich cultural heritage, perfect for traditional weddings. Different locations are ideal for different themes and forms of wedding. Choose your favourite marriage venue for the wedding of your dreams.
Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
1. Rajasthan i. Even the simplest ceremony gets a touch of royalty if performed in one of the many palaces in India. Palaces have vast lawns and gardens, and are located in very picturesque surroundings. Since they have a fairy-tale quality about them, naturally, this adds to the ambience giving the marriage a very special touch.
ii. The plus points: An in-house priest. Separate living arrangements for the bride and groom’s parties. Arrangements for all meals. All rituals and ceremonies – pre-wedding, on the wedding day, and post-wedding are taken care of. If required, even arrangements for the honeymoon are taken care of.
iii. Some palaces to choose from: Jaipur The Rambagh Palace The Jai Mahal Palace The Raj Vilas Palace The Chomu Palace Jodhpur Ajit Bhawan Umaid Bhawan Taj Mahal Hari Ran Banka
Jaisalmer Fort Rajwada Gorbandh Palace Jawahar Niwas Narayan Niwas The Neemrana Palace-Fort The Sariska Palace The Deogarh Palace
Udaipur Taj Lake Palace Jagat Niwas Palace Oberoi Udai Vilas Shiv Niwas Palace Fateh Prakash Palace The Devigarh Fort Palace
2. Gujarat i. Gujarat is another state which offers royal weddings. Many of their palaces and forts have been converted into heritage hotels where Indian weddings are organized. Gujarat, like Rajasthan, is full of colour and verve.
The plus points: Local priest Traditional folk music Ladies’ dances for the sangeet Decorations including floral arrangements Lunch and dinner Videography by professionals iii. . All Rights Reserved. Palampur The Palace. Some places to choose from: Balram Palace Resort. Uthelia. Bhavnagar Kusum Vilas Palace Nazar Bagh Palace Uparkot Fort Dabhoi Fort Beach Weddings 1. seven8 kms from Ahmedabad Nilambagh Palace Hotel. Ltd.ii. Kerala 18 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
. Weddings in Kerala are quite simple as compared to North Indian weddings. time is set aside for visiting places of local interest and sight-seeing. Floral decoration of the venue and special decoration of the mandap. Also. Classical dance and music performances for the pre-wedding festivities are organized. The plus points: The wedding feast is a culinary experience and is served on banana leaves. Accommodation for family and guests up to a certain number. Ltd. Clothes (including costume jewellery for the bride) for the bride and groom. Kerala offers several exotic wedding locations. the maximum numbers of days over which the festivities are spread is 2 to 3 days. 19 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. All Rights Reserved. However. The groom is brought on the back of an elephant in the baraat. and wedding make-up.i. Kerala is on the South-West coast of India. and curves along the Arabian Sea. ii.
The wedding attire of the bride and the groom are made available. and barbecues. Beach weddings have a touch of the unconventional. You may choose to have the main wedding ceremony in a traditional houseboat. Beach weddings are quite exotic in their own way. ii. All Rights Reserved. Kumarakom Lake Resort Zuri Kumarakom Resort The Taj Malabar in Kochi 2. and can be quite charming if both families love the outdoors. Some places to choose from: Kovalam Somatheeram Varkala Shanghumukham The backwaters of Kumarakom. 20 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. entertainment. Hotels and resorts in Goa organize the whole wedding including accommodation. Photography and videography are possible. Goa i. .iii. food and beverages. The plus points: A special choir sings during the ceremony. beach parties with live music. as well as local sight-seeing. Ltd.
One bottle of celebratory champagne for the bride and groom are on the house. sangeet and all the other rituals that have to be performed – all with that very special Goan touch. All Rights Reserved. and the food as well. . Some places to choose from: Calangute Baga Palolem Colva 21 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. arrangements are made for the mehendi. If you choose a theme. the hotel usually makes all the arrangements accordingly. Music is traditional Goan. Ltd. For a Hindu wedding. iii.
All Rights Reserved. and chances to explore the underwater beauty. This is an archipelago and the islands are located off the South-West coast of India in the Arabian Sea. The plus points: Lakshadweep offers excellent facilities for the wedding ceremony and offers a number of value-added services such as wedding cruises. iii. Some places to choose from: Kavaratti Kalpeni Kadmat Minicoy Bangaram 22 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd.Island Weddings 1. . Lakshadweep i. ii.
Andaman i. The three sanctuaries which are ideal are: Bandhavgarh National Park in Madhya Pradesh. Corbett National Park in Uttarakhand. The plus point: An entire island can be reserved for the wedding parties. Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan. making it exclusive. The whole island is decorated. 23 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. ii. All Rights Reserved. a wedding can be planned in a wildlife sanctuary provided the necessary permissions are taken from the local government body. iii. Here are some places you can choose from: Havelock Island Ross Island Red Skin Island Wildlife Sanctuaries For the daring and adventurous.2. This is also an archipelago. . and is a place of exquisite beauty. with the special marriage venue decorated even more elaborately to make it stand out. Ltd.
this would have to fit into the broad framework. Ltd. in some cases. it is easiest. All Rights Reserved. . It has a variety of green hills. the keyword in theme weddings is homogeneity. then this would apply only to the ceremonies. then India would be the most preferred choice for you to tie the wedding knot.Mountain weddings If mountains fascinate you. or a venue in Kerala would mean that the dress code would need to be worked out to match the venue. 24 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Kashmir is considered as heaven on earth and planning your best day at such a romantic place would be a truly exhilarating experience. If the bride and groom are from different states in India. Island. a Rajasthani or Gujarati palace/haveli venue. If we think about mixing and matching. step farming mountains and snow clad peaks which add a lot of class and glamour to your marriage party. THE WEDDING T HEME The venue chosen. or Wildlife Sanctuary weddings. If the bride and groom are from the same background. any additional ceremonies or rituals would be easily accommodated after discussing it with the presiding priest. also becomes the theme. There are different venues amongst which the Chalets Naldehra in Shimla would be the ideal wedding venue. For instance. if they want to incorporate their own vows or some personal touch. All weddings make allowances for the personal touch. not to the dress or the other wedding paraphernalia. just in case your first choice of venue is not available. It would be a good idea to have a few options. However. Likewise for the Beach.
for instance on a ship. A romantic theme. they may decide on a theme which has a special meaning for them. or in a garden. Since their wedding day is a special one for them. A favourite place. or Winter. A fantasy such as an Arabian Night theme. Something as indigenous as a Village theme. or Orchid theme or Arum lily theme. A season such as Spring. the civil ceremony could take place either in the Marriage Registrar’s office. If one of them is from another country. A favourite film. Monsoon. and the couple wants an Indian wedding. or in the home of either party. there are provisions for that as well. A retro theme such as the 50s or the 80s. All Rights Reserved. A specific historical period. Sometimes just one kind of flower can be chosen to create the whole theme such as the Rose theme. or on a jet. The Indian wedding ceremony can accommodate all additions or changes. 25 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. In case there are two ceremonies involved – a civil ceremony and a religious one. Ltd. and the religious ceremony could take place in a place of worship. A floral theme. It could be based on: A hobby or personal interest. Summer. Choosing a theme This depends entirely on the bride and groom. .
Dress code (including make-up) for all guests. It is always better to have a couple of options if you are creating your own theme. but the basic colour remains the same. All Rights Reserved. In Indian weddings since the groom is usually dressed in cream. One colour theme. Remember . Ltd. 26 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. the colour the groom wears will dictate the dress code for all the male guests. You can use different shades.to keep the following things in mind when creating your own theme: Decorations including creating the backdrop. it will match with whatever colour the theme uses. However. It is important because in case it is difficult to get one theme organized. Even a dark suit will not be out of place should the groom decide on a one. The attire (including make-up) of the bride and groom. . as well as the families concerned. another one can be chosen.
since the right ambience has to be created. there will be room for inauspicious comments. the groom and the families. All Rights Reserved. all the family members attend weddings. the one that never really goes wrong: Keep it simple! Things to be considered The theme that is chosen should suit the personalities of the bride. . the table settings and service as well as mode of serving will have to match the theme. For whatever reason. A mantra you could use. if you decide on a different theme for the reception. A royal. Food and beverages – Even if you serve a different kind of cuisine. Make sure that nothing inauspicious is incorporated. Once again. it should not be too different from the wedding theme. Ltd. Check out the feasibility of your chosen theme with the elders in the family as well as with the presiding priest. The end result should be completely authentic. Make sure you think the whole thing through to the last detail and have enough time to make it happen. but the two should blend with each other. romantic or fantasy theme means great expense. The same theme should be used for pre-wedding rituals and post-wedding ceremonies as well so that the theme doesn’t lose its essence. if the bride and groom are unable to handle this work. The budget: This is of the greatest importance when planning a theme wedding. It should always be remembered that an Indian wedding is a social event and if those attending are not comfortable. 27 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. someone they trust should be given the responsibility of working out all the details. choose a theme that can be enjoyed by the older people and the children as well. Of course. The table décor at the reception as well as the favours should reflect the theme.
in India. Colours are very important in Indian weddings. pink. Would you want an indoor or outdoor wedding? The theme chosen will then have to be adapted accordingly. Whether the ceremony is a Christian one or a Nikaah. the other wedding colours used are the same. . All Rights Reserved. Ltd. besides the specific colours at the ceremony. In case you are handing over the wedding preparations to a wedding planner agency. You would not want to have to deal with something you have not chosen for the most special occasion of your life. with lots of zari and gold. maroon. red. 28 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. They have to be shades of orange. ensure that you participate in all the major decisions. Outdoor weddings will naturally be more expensive since it needs more elaborate décor and lighting.
During certain times in a traditional wedding. an areca nut. But. Since there are certain traditional leaves that have to be used for a traditional ceremony. other than that. Colours are important in a retro theme as well. A tambool which is a combination of a betel leaf. it should match the mood created by the theme. gerberas and carnations are used quite frequently too. roses. So. Mango leaves signifying prosperity. where you will naturally use lots of flowers. and neon colours for the 80s. happiness and purity. hot pink (and very little or preferably no black. Banana leaves signify prosperity. . and marigolds. Ltd. Betel leaves symbolize good fortune. All Rights Reserved. besides the traditional colours. 29 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. note that traditional flowers at all Indian weddings are the jasmine. whether you are choosing a live band or getting a DJ or using soft background music. In case you have chosen a floral theme. traditional instruments such as the shehnai or nadaswaram have to be used. and lime is exchanged at the time of the sagaai to seal the alliance The kind of music chosen has to match the ambience created by the theme. Orchids. you could look at psychedelic colours for the 60s. The leaves required are: Banana leaves with the stem (this is usually placed on the four supports of the mandap). these will have to be included in the décor. since black is considered inauspicious) for the 50s.
Ltd. Since this is a very big day in the lives of two people and two families. on a spreadsheet. as well as what expenses still have to be factored in. remember to record all of them. 30 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. it is important that there should be no cutting down on the ceremonies and rituals that are important. Now. Points to be kept in mind when drawing up the guest list: The Budget – This is very important. The expenses on food and beverages can be looked at again and the menus can be re-worked. Only then can you have an overview of what you are spending and on what. In an Indian wedding great thought goes into planning this. even the tiniest ones. you would realize how much the wedding expense will turn out to be. All Rights Reserved. . the invitations go from the bride’s family to guests of both parties. Very gradually as the realistic picture emerges. THE GUEST L IST This is the most important task as well as the most difficult one. you can do your pruning. Conventionally. One by one as the expenses pile up.
Ltd. You would not want disgruntled guests to spoil this happy and auspicious occasion. 31 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. it is advisable to get an older member of the family to handle this. You will need to sit with some trusted person from the groom’s side. food and beverages. every guest’s comfort is important. transportation. For instance (and this is besides the immediate family). Remember there cannot be one final budget. The idea is to stay within a structure and ensure that there is enough leeway for unexpected expenses. or to go back with bad memories There are some people who absolutely have to be invited. close family members. decide on the number of guests you can invite. as well as other smaller details? First. The Venue – This is an important consideration when planning the guest list. to get inputs from the groom’s family as to whom all they want to be invited. there are other areas where the decoration can be minimal. Since this is a delicate matter. or at different places? Is the venue you are choosing convenient for the rituals and ceremonies? What are the expenses involved as regards. Remember. Some vital questions that may help you decide the all-important venue are: Which ceremonies and rituals are you planning on? Where would you like to have them – at home. All Rights Reserved. décor. or in a venue outside? Are they to be all in one place. . you will see that it falls in concentric circles. While the decorations of certain areas cannot be compromised with. If you make out a list.
If the bride’s and groom’s friends are being invited. how many ceremonies besides the main wedding would you like them to come for? Accordingly they will have to be told. their number should also be taken into account. children enjoy the most and are a part of every ceremony. and any other foreseeable expense. the two points under consideration would be: How many can be accommodated with the family and friends? For those who are to be put up in guest houses/hotels. naturally their parents too should be given invitations.e. Consequently. If there are common friends between the bride’s family and the groom’s family. how many days are you looking at. then you would have to ask whether. either a joint invitation can be given. For you. During an Indian wedding. i. Here too. Ltd. Guests from the place of residence This would include friends of the family. guests from outstation mean expenses of accommodation. Therefore. or an invitation from both sides can be given. Arrangements will have to be made for them. as host.The number of guests coming from out of town is next to be decided. it is advisable to keep room for the unexpected. If some of the invitees are working. meals. transport. . naturally. All Rights Reserved.. sight-seeing (if any). so that they can schedule it into their own personal calendars. Would you like your colleagues and others in the organization to attend the wedding and other ceremonies? Would you rather have them for only the reception? Would you like to host a separate reception only for them? 32 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
. One practice is to send out beautifully written cards saying that you are married and would be delighted to have the guest over for a small informal get together/ reception. one that will help you in your planning as well A wedding is a new beginning in many ways. Giving everyone enough time is a thoughtful gesture. A good idea would be to draw up a guest list which includes family and friends – everyone you would like to witness this very important day. All Rights Reserved. especially if it is the first wedding in the family. A guest list needs to be worked-on at least a couple of months before the wedding so that out-of-towners can get their train/plane reservations done. so inviting friends and relatives whom you haven’t seen in ages is a great 33 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. any kind of formal-have-to invitations are not really necessary. Do not invite anyone out of a sense of guilt. They will need to make arrangements at their own homes too before coming for the wedding. But other than that. Whoever has been given the responsibility of making the guest list must discuss it with the parents of the bride and groom. Of course if you have a really close friend. Ltd.In case you have to cut down on the guest list Cut down on colleagues from the place of work. In a traditional Indian wedding a large number of extended family members and guests arrive for the wedding. then naturally you would want him/her to be with you.
One practice which is catching on very rapidly when sending invitations to guests in far off places is via the Internet. THE INVITATION CARDS Invitation cards say a lot. that takes time as well. There are many rituals and ceremonies. The hard copy of the invitation is sent by post or courier so that the guest has this in hand as well. close and extended. 34 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.thing. and you are inviting extended family members. How the invitation is given is in itself a mini-ritual. It could be that you want all your invitees to attend all the functions. It could be that the wedding is to be a family affair. A wedding is also a time for renewing old ties and bonding. It could well be that some guests are common to both the bride’s family and the groom’s family. ensuring that everyone is comfortable is the responsibility of the two families concerned. sandalwood. though. on the wedding day. haldi. sweets. neighbours. The invitation cards need to be ordered well in advance since they have to be personally delivered. followed by a personal telephone call. Ltd. An important custom to be kept in mind is that in a traditional Indian wedding. has to go from both sides. or people of the locality. If they are being sent by post. a great deal of thought needs to go into the creation of invitation cards. friends. because sacred vermilion. either within the country or overseas. the invitation is delivered by hand and very ceremoniously to all the guests whether they are members of the family. . While ‘the more the merrier’ is good. All Rights Reserved. and post-wedding. betel nut are given when inviting the guest. The invitation is scanned and sent by email. pre-wedding. members of the religious fraternity you belong to. Consequently. The invitation. relatives and guests for the reception only.
time and venue of the actual wedding ceremony. Ltd. 35 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The dates. Give yourself enough time to choose a card from the thousands of designs available. The wedding invitation is the first hint of the theme of your wedding. If there are ceremonies that are unique to the family. All Rights Reserved. or some kind of confirmation that the guest could send back as acceptance or inability to attend. A map of the venue/venues. . Those who belong to other communities can then participate whole-heartedly in the various rituals and it is not just another meaningless ritual for them. it helps if a short description is given. times and venues of the other ceremonies and rituals.The main points to be included in a wedding invitation are: The date. it would be good to have something symbolic of both cultures in the card. An RSVP. or create your own card. If the wedding transcends countries and cultures.
the cross Swastika and Om. 36 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. . The card is bordered with sanctified red string. In the center of the leaf a miniature idol of Ganesha is placed. Add embellishments like rhinestones or beads or even a piece of matching tulle. All Rights Reserved. Shiva-Parvathi. The picture of a betel leaf. the star and crescent.The Themes of a Marriage card 1. The motif can be repeated in different colours. or having the card shaped like a betel leaf is considered auspicious. 2. Ltd. Traditional The design can be the same as the design on the wedding sari/dress. These have a distinct ethnic touch. Hand-drawn or stylized versions are also used. Choose a particular motif from the embroidery on your wedding attire. Religious icons such as Ganesh. The picture of a decorated doli/palki (palanquin) is engraved/embossed. Contemporary or modern The themes would be an extension of the wedding theme. and the Buddha are often used. Radha Krishna.
The invitation/invitations on colour-coded paper are placed inside. 4. Henna designs: These are very intricate designs. scented if possible. Ltd. or rhinestone. Box invitation: These are made with embossed card material.or gold. embossed paper so that the scroll is firm. and if traced on paper and cut out. not a scroll). The box would have a small stylized clasp. the background can be in dark red or dark hennacoloured paper.plated slim cases to hold the scroll. the invitation/invitations in matching glossy paper can be placed. Could be hand-painted. The box is made of wood. Some other prevalent forms of invitation cards Wedding scroll: The invitation could open out like a scroll. silver. Embossed either on plain paper or hand-made paper. if the design is cut out on thin cream/cream-gold paper. Adorned with a pearl. Use bronze-. Inside. The lid can have a special motif fixed onto it. . it would make a very elegant card cover. It is covered with silk. All Rights Reserved. Tips on creating your own card The card should be 5” by seven” (for a standard card. The cases could have a small clasp. 3. Could have miniature pictures of the bride and groom. organza or taffeta. 37 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Use thick. Could be on special hand-made paper. look very elegant. such as the couple’s initials entwined. So. or an attractively tied velvet ribbon.
it is in the name of the parents. or layer the card. The font – Both colour and size should be chosen with care. Use beads. The invitation is in the names of the grandparents. one for close friends. Sometimes. Once the card is printed with the words that you want. The colour of the ink would either be a darker shade to the paper used. rhinestones. Alternately you could affix a small charm. In a modern invitation. You can choose more than one colour so that you have one colour for close family. you could decorate it before distributing it. the bride and groom directly invite the guests. orange/saffron and gold. zari thread. Swastik. The words to be highlighted in bold or in a larger size should be clearly worked out. All Rights Reserved. of both the bride and the groom. and one for your other guests. The style and wording are contemporary as 38 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. it is in the name of both grandparents and parents. or ribbons to create your own design on the cards. or the Kalash. tassel. At least one of these religious symbols should be used for Hindu wedding: Ganesh. The paper should be decorated. The colours used in traditional cards are red. The format of your Marriage card The top right side of the card contains couple of lines of a mantra or verses. or hand-made. or with a design of your choice. Black is never used. Om. so that the entire card looks pleasing. or embossed in gold or silver. green. or in a contrasting colour. . if they are living. Colours usually chosen are classic ivory matched with maroon. or in dark blue. Use a single sheet. yellow. Palki (palanquin). Alternately. shiny or textured. Betel leaves. You could either choose designed paper – self designed. Ltd. one for extended family and other relatives.
All the cards should be colour-coded. 39 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. you could enclose an RSVP card with a self-addressed stamp affixed to it. Postage and self-addressed stamps too need to be included in the calculation. and other cards may have details of the other rituals and ceremonies. while the bride’s card would start with the time the baraat is received. In case the RSVP is mentioned on the card. When working out the budget for the wedding invitations. .well. or something different that the bride and groom feel is meaningful to them. It can be in the form of a poem. A typical Indian custom is to have “With Best Compliments” and the names of two immediate family members or close relatives mentioned. Instead of waiting for your guests to confirm. You could mention important landmarks near the wedding venue. From then onwards. The budget of your Marriage Card This is an important consideration. two names and numbers are printed where the guests can give a call. The time. dates and venues should be clearly mentioned. While the pre-wedding rituals are different. so that. Clear maps and directions should be given. All Rights Reserved. This would vary in the two cards. the auspicious item you are planning to give along with the card should be factored in. Ltd. the cards would have the same rituals/ceremonies. all they have to do is to post the card. The left side of the card has the details of the rituals and ceremonies. the groom’s card would start with the time the baraat leaves. for the wedding day. Another format is to have only the main wedding ceremony on one card. You could also mention an alternate route if there is one possible.
Naturally. 40 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. the person in charge of the RSVPs could call and confirm personally. so both these factors have to be worked on simultaneously. The invitations should be planned to be sent out at least six weeks in advance. You can also design simple invitations. in case hotels and rooms have to be booked and travel arrangements made. then naturally you would like to go for an elaborate card and elaborate detailing as well. This would give enough time to get the confirmations. The venue should be such that there is enough space for the guests to move about freely and the bride and groom to circulate among the guests. One family member should be deputed to handle the RSVPs so that he or she knows the numbers. if not earlier. the bride’s family sends out all the invitations. Other considerations In some traditions. and use the money for other wedding expenditure. The size of the venue and the guest list are directly linked. There is nothing worse than having too small or too large a venue. but it is important to have an idea of how much catering is required. Further. . This would help in planning the reception as well as other meals and snacks. elegant designs can be planned on. The parents of the friends of the bride and groom should be invited. including the guest list given to them by the groom’s family. simple cards with simple. All Rights Reserved. It would also enable your guests to plan their schedules. or even remind the guests about the date. you are not looking at an exact number. For a moderate budget. Ltd. If money is not a problem.
Guest houses are available. and a similar arrangement for meals would be made in the home of the groom to cater to his family members who are staying in other places. or there are elderly people in the group. Sometimes the hotel includes breakfast in the tariff. If the wedding is to be conducted in a hotel. then it is important to see that they are comfortable. they can be accommodated in the home of the bride-to-be and the groom. especially to those who are in other places. then hotel accommodation at reduced rates is offered to the guests as part of the wedding package. and have modern facilities and amenities. ARRANGEMENTS FOR YOUR OUTSTATION GUESTS Sending out invitations early. preferably close by. All Rights Reserved. Close friends of the bride-to-be and groom generally stay with the family. All meals would be served at the wedding venue for the guests of the bride’s family. . Some may come for a month before the wedding to help out with the arrangements. However. There are quite a few options for guests coming from other places. ensures that you get confirmations of those who are definitely coming. 41 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. This helps in planning where your guests are going to stay. then arrangements for everyone to stay will have to be made elsewhere. If your guests are being put up in guest houses. then transport arrangements will need to be made for them to be brought to the ‘wedding home’ or biyahghar every day. if there are many people coming in from out of town. If there is place in the house. If the guests are staying too far to walk.
If that is the case. so that the guests know who is receiving them. the hotel will gladly put welcoming flowers and a small hamper of fruits in every room the wedding guests occupy. make sure that there are cabs or other pre-arranged cars waiting for them. The drivers should be thoroughly briefed about the venue. give them a call to personally welcome them. In the event of your not picking up your guests from their place of arrival. On request. All Rights Reserved. . Ltd. Book enough cars so that there is transport available whenever required. 42 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. and they should stand holding placards with the names of the guests. then sight-seeing tours could be arranged. Sometimes. family friends are accommodating and might host a few guests. Giving guests a list of places to see and good restaurants they can try out is a good idea just in case they want to wander around by themselves. and maybe a small hamper of fresh fruits and chocolates on arrival. There are a few do’s here: Request the hotel/guest house to see to it that there are fresh flowers in the room. Once the guests reach the place they are staying. This naturally makes it special for the guests.A wedding in another place is also an excuse for guests to have a little holiday of their own.
" Homer. Ltd. Ancient Greek poet. All Rights Reserved.On the Wedding Day "There is nothing nobler or more admirable than when two people who see eye to eye keep house as man and wife. confounding their enemies and delighting their friends. 43 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. .
decorations. The wedding day. Ltd. The several days over which pre-wedding rituals are held. All Rights Reserved. etc. THE F OOD & B EVERAGES Food is an extremely important part of Indian weddings. For example arrangements for food and beverages.There are several arrangements that need to be done on the wedding day. The occasions that you would need to plan for are: The sagaai. . You may have given orders for them beforehand but these things are organized on the Dday itself. The days on which the post-wedding ceremonies take place. 44 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
. Soft drinks and other beverages. The areas that would need looking into and which usually fall in the domain of catering are: Menu planning for all meals and snacks. which is the sagaai. Bar. Buffet arrangement with burners to keep the food hot. Home cooks or professionals who specialize in vegetarian wedding cuisine or in the case of Muslim weddings. cooks who are well-versed in the art of non-vegetarian cuisine. Ltd. or the 45 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The first meal that the two families have together is during the finalizing of the alliance. Members of the family. Wedding cake if so decided on. Table décor including centrepieces on the tables and buffet. All Rights Reserved. Place cards if chosen. Table linen. Decoration of the venue. Hotels/restaurants.A decision that you will have to make regarding the catering depends on what choice you opt for: Professional caterers. Uniformed waiters. Cutlery and crockery.
have all their meals. In case members of the family are taking over the whole business of cooking. starting with the morning tea. All Rights Reserved. This will have to be factored in.engagement. an outdoor oven and cooking marquee is put up where professional cooks with their masalchis (helpers) belonging to the Brahmin class set the kitchen. with help from cooks and masalchis. or if the kitchen in the home is big enough. Relatives. All guests who drop in are served snacks and made to stay for a meal. who decide to stay with the families of the bride and groom. irrespective of the time. the cooking is done outdoors. the biyah-ghar or the homes of the bride and groom start getting guests from about 10 days to a week before the wedding. . Sometimes guests. who have been put up in guest houses or hotels close by. it can be done here too. Ideally a vegetarian meal is served. but in some communities a meal without a non-vegetarian dish is unthinkable. Therefore. it is important to plan it very carefully. Usually. 46 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. In many traditional homes. naturally would have all meals with the family. with the hosts. The kitchen of the home should also be considered for the purpose. In either case. In any get-together. both the indoor and outdoor kitchens are required. This is an absolute must. Ltd. as described above. Non-vegetarian dishes by professional khansamas(cook) are also cooked in a different part of the marquee since both the cooking utensils and serving dishes have to be kept separate. tea and sweets or assorted biscuits and snacks are served.
a meal would include: Drinks – alcoholic. Some traditional dishes. and this is a festive time full of fun and good cheer. and most weddings have a live chaat counter going. A variety of appetizers or starters. All Rights Reserved. so there has to be specific arrangements and different cooks assigned to this. drinks and beverages are in demand throughout the day. because their food habits are specific and need more care and attention. Ltd. menus with different cuisines are planned. Keep in mind the requirements of older people and children as well. Snacks. 47 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.Since there is such diversity of cuisine. . and/or non-alcoholic. the guests may not be. If the ceremony stretches for long hours then there should be enough food and drink arrangements to meet the excess requirements. The likes and dislikes of the bride and groom. Ideally. Consequently there should be some non-vegetarian dishes at every meal. The meals reflect: The region to which the bride and groom belong. One universal favourite is chaat. The local cuisine (for variety). Even if the family is vegetarian.
or whether it is to be handled by members of the family in the home kitchen. for this meal. A large selection of desserts including typical traditional Indian sweets and general desserts. Even if china is used for serving meals. Maybe 48 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. the traditional wedding feast is on banana leaves. different types of dals (pulses). Seasonal fruits and ice creams (including the indigenous kulfi) are part of the dessert too. long trestle tables are set up at the time of the first ceremony. Decide on whether you want the caterer to provide snacks. Also. or whether this is to be done by other cooks. . it is also wise to plan the meals day by day so that you have an overall picture. Paan. Sometimes. the guests sit on the floor on white sheets. 3 or four non-vegetarian dishes. Decide on all the meals that would need catering. Serving coffee or tea is not strictly done. Most Indians eat with their fingers. different types of rice preparations. Choosing the wedding caterer Decide on your budget. At this time. and are taken down after the last ceremony is over. Ltd. All Rights Reserved. The main course which would have at least 5 vegetable dishes (more if it is a purely vegetarian meal). In many cases. can be offered. custom may dictate that there are separate areas for men and women to eat. different kinds of breads and a variety of salads and curd preparations. Traditional Indian meals are served on banana leaves. but if preferred. A wash basin or some kind of arrangement for washing and wiping hands and rinsing the mouth is a must.
Taste samples of the food so you know what you are going to get.a mixing of options would be needed to help you stay within the budget. Is aesthetic and elegant. Though many caterers can be found online. As a personal gesture. The caterer should be able to provide both traditional dishes as well as some dishes from the local cuisine. Maybe the people who are to decorate the house and wedding mandap can handle this as well. Decide from where the vegetables. For the following two reasons: Weddings happen by seasons. fruits and non-vegetarian foods are going to be bought. The caterer should be open to your ideas and suggestions with regards to recipes and spices to be used. All Rights Reserved. check to see that it: Is homogenous. Plan out the menus. It would be easier to negotiate the rates if you do it well in advance. and the caterer you would like. some of the bride’s family members could be present behind selective food counters. then do not take any chances. 49 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Give the decorations to someone else. The rates become higher closer to the wedding date. . Whoever is doing the decorations. If you do not feel convinced. Find out if they handle venue and table decoration as well. Matches your theme. Alternately. Ltd. Checking out various options as regards caterers and their rates needs to be started at least 10 months prior to the wedding. it would be safer to go by personal recommendation. may well be snapped up by someone else. you could get some of your close friends and relatives to handle it. It is also a good idea to plan a buffer in case you exceed the budget. The sooner you book the caterer the better.
All Rights Reserved. Vegetarian and non-vegetarian guests. The caterer should be knowledgeable about cocktails and other liquor that is being served. Office friends and colleagues. or a buffet. Ltd. The groom’s family. 50 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. . you will naturally need to plan the seating. and children will be moving about. Allows for space since waiters. relatives and guests. This needs consideration since there are: The bride’s family. guests. In a sit-down meal. You would need to decide whether you want a sit-down meal. Arrangements will need to be done accordingly. and the glasses they are to be served in. relatives and guests.
PHOTOGRAPHY AND V IDEOGRAPHY Capturing the wedding on film is a very important task. It is always a better idea to trust the reputation that comes to you by word of mouth. Sit with the photographer and/or videographer and brief them thoroughly so that those precious moments are recorded according to your wish. Ltd. and guests. as well as general pictures of the wedding. . reputed organization that deals exclusively with weddings. Consulting a professional Find out how much of the budget should be set aside for this purpose. 51 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. All Rights Reserved. Find a good. Of course guests and close friends will use their own cameras to take photographs of moments that are important. reception.
nor are they going to come again. do indicate the preferred choice of music for the background. Presence of many people makes the couple conscious. This has the wonderful effect of creating just the right festive atmosphere. DECORATIONS Since all Indian weddings are guided by the stars. The photographer and/ or videographer should be invited a day before to see the rehearsal. Therefore. for an Indian wedding is like a festival! 52 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. or there are shots that are unnecessary. auspicious dates are fixed for all formal functions. . The first thing that goes up usually is the decorative lights. A portfolio shoot is a must and make sure that there are only two other people in addition to the bride and the groom for the portfolio shoot. List out priority shots for every ceremony. Remember if the pictures are not clicked at the right time. For the videos. Assign a family member to guide the photographer through all the ceremonies. And worse. because these moments cannot be re-played. Finalize the details of the deal before the wedding. so that he has an idea about the whole event and what to expect out of it. it would be a tragedy. All Rights Reserved. Ltd. The first of the pre-wedding functions is the formal engagement ceremony which takes place after the elders of both families have agreed to the match. the homes of the bride-to-be and groom are decorated right from this point on. you would have paid for something you are not satisfied with.
marquees or canopies with sides. the whole yard is decorated with lights as well. While lights drape every bit of at least the façade of the house. Bright. The doorway is also exquisitely decorated with colourful hangings called torans or bandanwaars.Bright. Naturally the one at the entrance is the most elaborate and colourful. Things to be considered The budget – How much you would decide to set aside for flowers. The house and yard are also enclosed with colourful shamianas. some thought has to be given to the kind and quantity of flowers that you would need to order. colourful rangolis made with rice powder and other coloured powders are made at the entrance and various other places. Flowers play an important role in Indian wedding decorations. Since they are a necessity. 53 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. . colourful decorations are a sign that this is a ‘wedding home’. Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
One flower that has to be included no matter what the other choices of flowers are. doli. The colours of the flowers must be bright and vibrant. The rose is another flower that is necessary for Indian weddings. mandap. That would include shipping charges. for the groom and best man as well as men of the immediate family of both sides has to be planned. For South Indian weddings. Bridal dais. All Rights Reserved. Flowers for the bridal bouquet in Christian weddings have to have a small spray of orange blossoms. flowers have to be included in every rangoli. car. Garlands of jasmines are also given to all the lady guests. is the marigold. entryway. Ltd. sehra. then it would be better if you give the responsibility to professional decorators. as well as the fact that there may be some damage to the flowers. the buttonhole or boutonnière. . 54 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Rose petals are always used to bless the bride and groom. No wedding venue is complete without the rangoli. It is a single flower or a bud and is usually a white carnation or a rose. Who will arrange the flowers – Few of the flower arrangements could be taken care of by members of the family. But in case you are planning for a lot of flower arrangements. While the outline is traced in white or the design is filled in with different colours. no matter what the other flowers used are. Also. jasmine is a must. The kind of flowers – If you go in for what is available locally. varmala and table centerpieces are amongst the most important areas that require elaborate floral decoration. Trivia: the tradition of boutonniere dates back from medieval days when the knights would pin the flowers presented by the damsels to flaunt their love and acceptance. these would be less expensive than ordering the flowers from another place. pillars. Fresh flowers available locally would prevent these problems.
All Rights Reserved.In Indian weddings. Nowadays. is decorated. The bridegroom’s house is as elaborately decorated. . Furthermore. Decorating the Mandap The main wedding takes place in a small. The car. the bridegroom goes in a car. there are all kinds of ceremonies in both houses both before and after the wedding. sanctified area called the mandap. It is a four-poled canopy. the wedding ceremony takes place in the bride’s house. therefore. Ltd. After a small ceremony in his house. He may even get onto a horse for the last bit of the journey to the bride’s house. the bridegroom along with other family members goes to the bride’s house. because this is where the bride is going to be brought after the wedding. The poles are elaborately 55 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Traditionally he is supposed to go on a beautifully decorated horse. so that everyone can see and participate in the ceremony. and is made on a raised platform or stage.
. When the bridegroom comes to the bride’s house. It is in this mandap that the wedding vows are taken. The roof in some cases is dome shaped. he is made to stand on a slightly raised dais for the garlanding ceremony.decorated as is the roof of the mandap. the mangalsutra is tied around the bride’s neck. As the latest trend. Splashes of pink can also be added. The dais is decorated. the 56 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Of course the more elaborate weddings have intricately created mandaps. Even the simplest of weddings has a mandap. The bride is brought in by her cousins and sisters to garland the groom. The garlands are masterpieces in themselves. Sometimes. There are small seats for the pundits as well as for the bride and groom. He then garlands her and they are taken to the mandap. It is also decorated with flowers. A small havan is made since the ceremony takes place in the presence of a sacred fire. The two sets of parents also sit in the mandap. the whole mandap including the roof is made of flowers. prettily decorated. Ltd. The other close family members generally stand around the mandap. All Rights Reserved. The predominant colours used in the mandap are gold and red. and the seven pheras (circumnavigations) of the fire are made.
Sometimes it is smeared with turmeric paste and a vermilion dot is put on it. flowers. all the items on the thaali can be placed in small colourful clay containers.women in the groom’s procession are gifted with scented vials and potpourris and the men are gifted with flowers for their button-holes. turmeric paste. The kalash is a pot in which a coconut is placed. A small decorative lit diya is placed in the middle of this sign. It is ringed with washed fresh mango leaves. The kalash pots can be placed individually. Two items which every Indian wedding use as symbols of shagun (auspiciousness) are the Kalash and the thaali. Sometimes beautifully painted earthen pots are used. or one on top of the other in order of decreasing size. The swastika symbolizes well-being. Another way of decorating it is to cover the thaali in silver or gold paper and put a zari border around it. A swastika symbol. The ceremonial thaali too is decorated beautifully. 57 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The kalash is painted with ethnic designs on the outside. An aarti is also performed when the bride goes to the groom’s house after the wedding ceremony. It is usually of brass. All Rights Reserved. It is a big thaali made of brass or silver. sandalwood paste. The coconut which is placed on top can be kept in its natural form. Sometimes an incense stick is also placed on the thaali. To make the thaali more decorative. A plantain leaf is placed on it. is made in the center. the thaali with the ritual fire. or decorated. . auspicious red vermilion powder and rice grains are kept handy. Ltd. though silver can be used as well. Since the welcome ceremony of the groom requires an aarti.
Ltd. both of them will weather everything together. In this case. these have to be arranged for and put up well in advance. the music of the shehnai or the nadaswaram is considered auspicious. but the arrangement looks attractive. or a dais which is decorated. Often traditional instruments such as the shehnai or nadaswaram are played accompanied by percussion instruments like the tabla or thavil.In case a particular wedding ceremony has some other requirements. for the musicians. the Tamil wedding ceremony has a special occasion when the bride and groom have to sit on a swing. All Rights Reserved. and there are certain times in the course of the ceremony where they are required to be played. the musicians then move to the wedding mandap area. especially if it is cold. Whatever the theme of the wedding is. a small canopy is put up so that the instruments and the musicians are not only protected from the weather. No-matter what other music is chosen. thick mattresses covered with white cloth are arranged on a dais. If the theme is ethnic. Wherever the musicians are to sit. This would definitely add to the ambience. or house can be created near the wedding mandap. 58 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. then the musician’s mandap can resemble a mud hut with beautiful designs on the walls with mirror work and motifs. a separate mandap in the form of a temple. Consequently a swing is decorated and kept in a suitable place. . Sometimes there is a small area on top of or near the gate from where the musicians play as the bridegroom enters the gate. For instance. In most venues there is a separate place ear-marked for the musicians. the place assigned to the musicians has to be done up to match. After the welcome. Their swinging gently on this swing together signifies that while life together is bound to have its ups and downs. This place can be a mandap. Sometimes.
The pews are also decorated. Chairs are placed for the family members as well. so the lighting should be such that these turn out realistic and beautiful. Sometimes there are festoons below the ceiling to create a second ceiling. Sometimes. the Church is decorated with white flowers. then a table near the entry holds the favours and these are given to all the guests after the ceremony is over and the guests are leaving the church. if they choose to sit on chairs. no matter what kind of wedding ceremony it is. Videos and photographs are taken. either the bride and groom are in different rooms and the Maulvi goes to them separately to ask for their consent. . aisle. This is the most important day of one’s life and needs to be photographically recorded in detail. Good. If they choose to sit on the floor. If the bride has chosen to offer favours to all the guests. then the maharajah chairs are placed in the room. since they actively participate in the nikaah.Forms of decoration according to the wedding type For a church wedding. Whatever the arrangement. or they may sit in the same room. church door and entrance are decorated. soft lighting adds to the atmosphere. Lighting is important. The altar is specially decorated with flowers and candles. The pews. the room where the bride and groom sit is always beautifully done up and decorated. the room is divided by a kind of decorative partition. then the floor of the whole room has thick mattresses covered with brocade cloth. Ltd. Consequently there has to be a dining area or dining shamiana (tent) close to 59 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Gossamer and organza can also be used as decorating material along with flowing satin ribbons. The traditional Indian wedding is a long drawn out affair. Alternately. One very important feature of an Indian wedding is the nonstop eating and drinking that happens. For a nikaah ceremony. The vestry where the bride and groom go to sign the marriage register after the ceremony is also decorated in white. All Rights Reserved.
or sets of small tables to seat four. People also opt in 60 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. There are caterers with their own cooks and bearers/waiters who take over. All tables are covered with table cloths and runners with a centrepiece of flowers or fruits. This dining area can be done up attractively with long trestle tables and chairs. they are a part of the wedding. Often during the ceremony. Ltd. . This kind of large-scale cooking is usually done outdoors in a makeshift kitchen which is enclosed in a colourful shamiana. Therefore. a group of people might want to sit and chat over a cup of tea. The chairs too can have their backs and seats covered so as to look festive. where people of several religions and castes stay together with peace. the two buffets can be placed separately. India is a land of diversity.where the cooks are cooking. Thus. There are flower arrangements all around. The buffet is attractively and conveniently located and arranged. Since there are bound to be both non-vegetarian and vegetarian guests. and yet doing their own socializing! CHOOSING THE M ARRIAGE OFFICIANT Rituals play a very significant part during an Indian wedding. the choice of the priest is very important. All Rights Reserved. Incense stick which forms an important part of Indian celebrations is lit so that the whole atmosphere is redolent with the smell of sandalwood/jasmine/frank incense.
Ltd. Involved in the whole process right from the time the commitments are made by the two families. constraints and apprehensions of the families so that there is no jarring note on this happy occasion. Able to explain the meanings of the chants/prayers so that the bride and groom understand what is happening.for inter-caste /inter-religion /inter. . Able to explain the meanings of the ceremonies in English. so that participation of all concerned is whole-hearted. and who can do the explaining. Able to create a meaningful ceremony when the bride and groom belong to different castes so that none of the elders are offended. Able to explain the meanings of the various rituals. In fact he should be able to adapt the rituals to the conditions prevailing.region marriages. All Rights Reserved. and at the same time see that the necessary customs are observed. or have an assistant who knows English. So the officiant or the priest for the purpose of marriage should be selected with great care. All the legal procedures that are involved in the marriage. Prerequisite of a good marriage priest He should be knowledgeable about: The Vedic texts and mantras that are related to marriage. 61 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. in case one of the parties is a foreigner. Understand the restraints.
All Rights Reserved. . Therefore what God has fixed together.” The Bible 62 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.Post Wedding Events “So they are no longer two but one flesh. Ltd. no human being must separate.
It can be a day or two after the wedding. just the close family members and friends would go for a meal to the newlyweds’ favourite place. If you are planning on an intimate wedding. then the music or live band is booked accordingly. You have much more to expect. or one can also arrange the reception in a privately-run reception hall. Ltd. now is the time to be comfortable and enjoy the rest of the events with relief. THE WEDDING R ECEPTION The Wedding Reception is a very big event. The date for the reception may vary. the decoration of the hall is the caterers’ responsibility along with the menu. depending on the convenience of the newly-weds. even if the main event is over. or on the same day. or recommended by a reliable person. Often. the venue can either be the home or some other suitable place. In case entertainment is planned or there is to be a dance. All Rights Reserved. the catering is generally given to a catering agency either known to the family. The reception is usually worked around a meal. There are wedding reception halls available in 5-star hotels. then the reception that you would plan would naturally be in accordance with it. . Here again. In this case. as well as that of the guests. There are still lot of rituals and post – wedding ceremonies that are carried out. In this instance. There may be multiple tiered wedding cake. This is done in consultation with the family. For the couple. Even if the wedding is a traditional one. Alternately. the family would host a small get-together with food and drink at home. it might be a good idea to have a Master of Ceremonies who can 63 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.Most of the Indian traditional weddings last for more than a week.
Ltd. whereas the post wedding reception is the responsibility of the groom’s side. 64 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Table runners can be elaborate with candles and flowers on them. . According to Indian tradition the engagement and the wedding ceremony is organized and arranged by the bride’s family. The light from colorful aromatic candles floating in bowls filled with water creates a warm ambience. Chairs covered with single color linen and sashes of contrasting colors tied around them look very attractive. Since in India weddings are in definite seasons. care has to be taken to make all the bookings in advance. Things that needs to be considered Use fabric banners in bright colours draped on the walls and below the ceiling. The wedding reception is usually hosted by the groom’s family as a mark of welcoming the bride. All Rights Reserved. Make someone in-charge of receiving and recording gifts unless it is specified that gifts are not to be given. the new entrant to their family and home. Ensure that there are sufficient parking spaces for the vehicles.hold the whole entertainment together.
There are lots of flowers. These are decorated with beaten silver or aluminum and have red upholstery. if the reception venue that has been chosen has a lawn or garden. the reception could be held there. The sofa and special chairs can be hired. All Rights Reserved. Alternately. There is something very festive about an outdoor reception. the way the waiters are dressed. If a hall is chosen for the reception. A great deal of red and gold are also used. the way the food is served also adds to the whole effect. Here again. Naturally. This dais can be used for certain pre-wedding rituals as well as for the reception when the bride and groom receive guests. A side covering with a dome frame covered with flowers. again beautifully decorated. or a bar could be set up in an especially ear-marked place. . If the home of the groom is large enough to host the reception. Ltd. are placed on this. If a bar is being planned. 65 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. At one end is a special canopy with a dais.Wedding receptions can be planned outdoors if the weather is favorable. then there could be waiters circulating the drinks. and the way the bar is set up should match the décor chosen. then a stage is set up (unless there is already one) with an elaborate backdrop. Small canopies over tables for four people. This is highly decorated and a Maharajah sofa or two Maharajah chairs. then there’s nothing like it. lots of tulle and organza and special lighting. specially created for the occasion. or decorative tinsel and flower streamers from a central pole covering the entire area. Adorning the Reception area One large shamiana or marquee.
Consequently. there are two main factors that need to be considered: The décor.Therefore. you will have to decide what percentage of the budget set aside for the reception is to be used for each of these. and draped chairs with muted lighting create a wonderful ambience. table cloths. when you are planning the reception. Candles in elaborate candelabra. Ltd. Flowers. candles. Martini bowls with floating candles. Some tips are: Strings of miniature lights draped all over the room with a few well-concealed soft lights. All Rights Reserved. The food and beverages. . 66 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. One plan could be to have simple but elegant décor and a good table.
Ltd. “If you live to be a hundred. Seasonal and local flowers.” A. Bowls of flowers and fruits on the buffet table or side tables. I want to live to be a hundred minus one day. so I never have to live without you. . or a close friend of the bride and groom. THE WEDDING TOAST During most of the receptions. If it is a small gathering. zari table runners. A. Plain table cloths with bright. you could even think of silver cutlery and bone china crockery. Once you have the basic gist of what you want to say. Lace over-cloth on the table cloths. Milne (1882-1956). All Rights Reserved. English author Things to remember if you are the chosen speaker Write down what you would like to say. 67 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. you can polish it and refine it. a toast is proposed by the groom’s Best Man or the bride’s Maid of honour. Good crockery and cutlery. elaborately worked.
Ltd. End with best wishes for a long. in such a case the amount should be mentioned against the name. Say how touching the wedding ceremony was. and mention your connection with the bride and groom. or some memory you have of both of them. All Rights Reserved. happy and prosperous married life. 68 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Talk about some positive quality about the bride and groom. cash is given. Sometimes. Ask everyone to lift their glass and say: “To ______ (name of the bride). . Further when making the toast Introduce yourself right at the beginning. and _______(name of the groom). Thank the hosts. Compliment the bride. thank you cards must be sent out. You could mention an anecdote connected with the bride and groom. You could also include a quotation if you like. GIFTS AND FAVOURS The person who is in charge of handling the guest list should be deputed to look after the gifts as well. Once the newlyweds come back after their honeymoon and get down to settling in their new home.
All Rights Reserved. This helps in keeping the budget within bounds 69 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. This can take the form of a brass/silver/ thaali on which certain auspicious items are placed. Though it is not very common. . or some hand-crafted article that has been specially made for the family to be given on this occasion.There are different categories of gifts Gifts that are given by the parents to the guests. for instance. or cash when given to the bride/groom Gifts given to immediate family members would be clothes or cash. This is done when the parents personally visit the guests to invite them. it can be something specific to the wedding theme. Gifts exchanged by the two families during certain rituals and ceremonies. all the male relatives from the groom’s side are given gifts by the male members from the bride’s side. the bride and groom may decide against gifts. at the time of the milni. jewellery. It is important therefore to decide on these gifts early on and get them so that there is no last minute crisis and you don’t end up paying more than what you intended or what your budget allows for. or something for their future home. a dinner set or bedroom linen and all the invitees would get to contribute to some part of that. Gifts given to the bride and groom at their bachelor/bachelorette parties. Sometimes. These generally take the form of clothes. Details of those who is gifted what is decided in advance. In this case. or. The kind of gift and the cost of it depend on how close the relationship is. in Punjabi weddings. gifts given by them can be fun gifts. Wedding gifts to the bride and groom. and give them the invitation card. but the person organizing the party can hint at the gifts the bride would like. For instance. Ltd. a well-phrased sentence is inserted in the wedding invitation. or decide on. Since this is a party for close friends.
specially ordered for the occasion. All Rights Reserved. if you are designing them would need to be ordered in advance. Ltd. These would be personal. Souvenirs. and the cost would be less when ordered in bulk. This could be in the form of boxes of sweets. You could decide on different favours. Tips for wedding favours or shagun When you set aside money for these. In this case the store is instructed to wrap the boxes with special wrapping given to them or ordered by the family. Whatever you give your guests should make them feel special. do not be either extravagant or frugal. Shagun or return gifts or favours are given to relatives and close friends as a gesture of appreciation for having attended the wedding. . 70 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The good thing about Indian handicrafts is that you can get something unique for every budget. or the same one for everyone.
Dry fruit box. A set of diyas. Statues or small idols of Ganesh. or you could order your own design as well. or brass pooja thaali. Candles in hand-crafted candle holders. then you can have different kinds for different sets of guests. Indian miniature paintings. sizes and aromas. The container could be made of wicker or beaten silver/foil. jewel boxes. and great range of price and colour. Silver coins engraved with Ganesh and Laxmi. All Rights Reserved. Wall hangings. Ltd. They are encrusted in silver. Thanjavur (Tanjore) plates. These are available in a large variety. These are made of copper and brass. Aroma candles are also available in all shapes. You get all kinds of diyas from pottery to ceramic and most gorgeously painted and embellished. bowls. 71 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Woodcraft. These are available as readymade gift items. The motifs are from Hindu mythology. napkin rings. and copper designed wall plates. Magnets or magnet frames with pictures of the bride and groom. Alternately you can order the kinds of dry fruits you would like included.Some ideas for gifts Ornamental serving trays. Kashmiri craft. and Laxmi. Should you decide on this. . Traditional Indian batik art and craft work. silver. Silk shawls and stoles. Copper. Brass.
it is the members of the family who personally look into this. Handloom weaves are gorgeous and are available in different colours. A specially designed hamper containing lots of different stuff. Remember this is a personal acknowledgement of the guest/relative/close friend. Consequently a lot of thought has to go into it. If possible. Shagun or favours can be ordered. for a traditional wedding. Ltd. 72 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. All Rights Reserved. However. Anything done in a hurry or in a slipshod manner is only going to create an inauspicious vibe towards the bride and groom. designs and lengths. or bought online too from stores which specialize in them. All these gifts would have either an engraving of your initials or a card with your photographs on it. . Use your creativity to make favours with them. It is always a good idea to gift the favors to the outstation guests a few hours before the wedding. Every State in India is known for its own indigenous craft. Giving something traditional and indigenous to the place of the wedding would be special. Chocolates in personalized wrappers with the wedding monogram or the initials of the bride and the groom. this is so because many guests schedule their departure within hours after the wedding or the reception is concluded. small cards made with handmade paper can be affixed with the names of the person you are giving the gift to. Cotton stoles in different colours with a thin border of zari can be considered.
On the other hand. . whether the couple knew each other before the wedding. Hotel bookings and reservations should be confirmed. This is the time when the newly-weds lay the first foundation stones of their life together. it is good for them to go somewhere beautiful and where they can be alone. A honeymoon is very important for the newly-weds. “A successful marriage requires falling in love many times. All Rights Reserved. THE H ONEYMOON Wedding over. Whether the marriage has been a love marriage. Ltd. or they are strangers. Facts to be taken into account For how many days are you are planning your honeymoon? What kind of budget are you setting? Plan well in advance so that there are no glitches. 73 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. American journalist and author. The honeymoon is planned either by the parents or the newly-weds. always with the same person. or an arranged one. Naturally if it is planned by the parents.” Mignon McLaughlin (1913-1983). it is time for the young couple to go away for a few days. the wishes of the newly-weds as to the destination are respected. Ensure that all travel arrangements are in place. the newly-weds might want to gift this to themselves.
then all the necessary documentation should be done. it would be advisable to go over all the arrangements with them instead of leaving things entirely to in their hands. visas obtained and travel documents. If the couple is going abroad. Consequently. . All Rights Reserved. the advantage of planning in advance is that any last minute changes/difficulties can be absorbed. ensure that you take printouts of all the documents. Whether you are planning an off-the-beaten-track destination. Choose a destination where the couple is not viewed as tourist targets. In case the honeymoon package is being planned by a travel agent. Honeymoon destinations – If the wedding is in a place where it would be possible for the couple to stay on for their honeymoon. Special arrangements will have to be made in this case as well. or a typical honeymoon destination. Carry least possible luggage. tickets etc. everyone would come away. If online bookings are being made. Ltd. and adjustments made. leaving the newlyweds to stay on. If however. foreign exchange and other details cleared. the couple has another destination in mind. after the wedding. then there is nothing like it. then that would be accounted for in the wedding planning details and the budgeting 74 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
Gangtok and the surrounding hills. stress-free honeymoon. if you are not sure of planning your honeymoon tour on your own. you could try out one of the packages offered by a reputed travel agent. mainly in Rajasthan or the hills. 75 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Some choice of honeymoon destinations in India Kashmir Himachal Pradesh Rajasthan Kerala The Lakshadweep Islands The Andamans The Kumaon hills Darjeeling Ladakh Goa Ootacamund Any of the wildlife sanctuaries Some travel agents offer honeymoon tours in The South criss-crossing the states of Kerala. All Rights Reserved. or whoever is planning out the honeymoon study the itinerary and hotel detail including meals etc so that the couple can enjoy a relaxing. So. Ltd. .Hotels and travel agents offer ready-made honeymoon packages. Karnataka and Andhra. The North. The North-East. Tamil Nadu. It is imperative that the bride and groom.
These range from 6 days and 5 nights. or arrangements going awry. . or change of plans. It would also be a good idea to plan everything beforehand so that there is no last minute rush. 76 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. to 1seven days and 16 nights stay. it would be a good idea to see that all the travel documents are in order before the wedding. You might plan a honeymoon abroad. In which case. All Rights Reserved. Ltd.
So here are few suggestions about deciding upon the apparel and accessories that would help you to choose your dress for your most special day. And then this moment will have been worthwhile. .Deciding on Apparel and Accessories During the wedding. and love. Indian spiritual guru. Ltd. each bride wants to look like a princess and each groom wants to look the best. lightheartedness. All Rights Reserved. we will create abundance and joy for each other.” 77 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. “If we share with caring. Deepak Chopra.
However. . reception. the bride’s colours are white/ivory and gold. THE WEDDING ATTIRE FOR THE BRIDE AND THE GROOM Deciding on the wedding dress is an event in itself. Traditional auspicious wedding colours are red and gold. the groom could be asked to choose what he would like. The Bride’s attire There is a wide range to choose from for wedding wear for a traditional Indian wedding. and grihapravesh or entrance into the groom’s home. and the bride’s family would bear that expense. there are two main ceremonies: the engagement ceremony and the wedding. In a Church wedding. or for the reception. the bride would wear something in red. vidaai. Pared down. The bride’s family too gifts one wedding outfit to the groom. They then bear the expense of this particular dress. Ltd. in a traditional Indian wedding there are other functions as well such as the mehendi. There is: The sari (both 6-yards and 9-yards). Here too. or the bride’s family is asked by the groom’s family to decide on what the bride is to wear. sangeet. 78 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. However. In some cases. Depending on the various customary traditions the wedding dress is either gifted by the bridegroom’s family to the bride. for the reception. baraat. green is the auspicious colour. The wedding wear gifted by the groom’s family to the bride is worn either at the wedding for some particular ceremony. All Rights Reserved.
Full-length gowns . blouse and kavani. The dress comes with a veil which can be either short or long depending on the style of the dress. All kinds of patterns are available.Christian brides might opt for this. The gharara/sharara-dupatta. the kavani might be embroidered as well. 79 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. and an extra matching dupatta for the pheras. The dhoti-blouse-kavani for Kerala weddings. A second matching scarf can be used for ceremonies where the scarf has to be put over the heads of the bride and groom. as well as for the pheras when the end of the scarf has to be tied to the end of the groom’s dupatta. . While there are different size of bands of zari on the dhoti.Here again another matching but not as elaborately worked dupatta can be used for the pheras and other rituals. if required. The shalwar-kurta-dupatta . The lehenga which is a long skirt with a matching blouse or choli and a dupatta. Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
chains. The shade of white ranges from pure white to cream to ivory for the dress with matching veil. and work out the matching accessories. Valkalam. green is considered auspicious. Nowadays. and earrings. they are works of art. necklaces. Mysore. If custom requires. There is no one particular shade of red. In Maharashtra. Glass bangles are also in fashion. . The Indian bride wears quite a lot of gold as well – Bangles. the bride might want to design her outfit herself. the bride may choose the shade that suits her. rings on her fingers and toes. Bandhini. or even silver jewellery. 80 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Tussar. Bandhej. Chiffon. Kota. anklets. The bride might have to wear armlets and a waistband if custom so dictates. then the bride’s forehead is decorated with delicate designs made with sandalwood paste. and gold/silver thread embroidery. All Rights Reserved. Chanderi. The material is silk – Benarsi. so the bride wears a green sari with traditional zari work on the sari in gold and silver threads. brocade is used as well. Or else. white gold. Kosa. sequins. Fench lace. or Paithani. Indian brides wear a nose ring . Brocade. Crystals. Crepe. The traditional chuda (red and ivory bangles) is a must in some communities. Tissue. The bride may choose to wear her mother’s wedding sari. Sometimes. Ltd. The wedding dress is embellished with zari. Shamoi-satin. Ikat. or Kanjeevaram. the bride might choose to wear platinum. Sometimes a dash of pink makes the wedding attire even more glamorous. or zardosiwork. The Bengali bride has to wear a loha or iron bangle along with special bangles made from conch shell (shankha) and lacquer (pola). Many designers have a wedding section. It depends on the region the family belongs to.Whatever dresses the bride chooses. so that is an option you could look into. and lace are also used.
wine red. the wedding attire is usually a mix of the Western and Indian. Matching sandals. All Rights Reserved. All brides wear flowers in their hair. The colours are usually pastel. Try the sorbet colours like mango. For the mehendi – Sari in Benarsi or Kanjeevaram silk with traditional motifs. and woven into the hairdo. organza or silk with embroidery or zardosi work. to very elaborate ornaments are worn on the sides of the head. Jewellery stores have a wedding section. Hair ornaments ranging from the mang and borla which is pinned in the parting. he will usually change into a suit for the reception. bags/clutches for each outfit for each occasion are also worked out. so that too needs to be planned for. There is a wide range of ethnic wear to choose from. Some options are: 81 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. peach or pista. shoes. lehengas. of course. For the reception – Saris. The wedding. If the groom chooses Indian wear for his wedding. The colours chosen are usually wine or ochre. or pink. The jewellery worn is usually traditional. . Ltd. The colours to choose from are maroon. Sometimes blue or green are also worn at the reception. and are quite amenable to creating something original just for you. The Groom’s attire The Indian bridegroom wears either traditional ethnic wear or the western suit. has the most elaborate dressing. burgundy. Nowadays. ghagra-cholis in tissue. Some weaves and colours that are commonly chosen are: For the sangeet – Lachcha in tissue and zardosi.
While the traditional colour is cream. 82 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. South Indian weddings require that the groom be bare-chested for the ceremony. Groom’s Safa is ornamented and remarkedly different from that of the other baraatis. though. The achkan is worn over a long shirt. It does not have a lining. and is narrow at the feet. Dark or cream. Refrain from Achakan if height is a constraint The sherwani .This is a long coat with a mandarin collar. . Nowadays. made of light material and is usually cream. It is made from suit material. grooms go in for dark colours as well. It is heavily embroidered and is in cream or a dark colour. has a drawstring waistband. The colour is cream or white. he has a sehra or a veil or flowers covering his face. Turbans are made of fine cotton. The churidar . The turban or safa .This is a knee-length coat with a lining. Some communities have the groom dressed in silk dhotis with a broad zari border. Ltd.These are tight-fitting trousers with gathers near the foot. In that case he wears a silk dhoti with zari. This is made of lightweight material.This is usually in pink. the achkan has rather heavy zari work on it.This is a long shirt coming down to the knees. The dhoti is usually white or cream. The achkan . stones and Swarovski crystals. All Rights Reserved. It is made of lightweight material. The kurta . is wide at the top. and a silk kurta with gold buttons.Instead of the churidar. The sherwani is heavily embroidered with zari. The dhoti is tied in different ways depending on the community the groom belongs to. it can be of a dark colour. and is usually either white or cream. Over this. The shalwar . the groom might want to wear the loose flowing shalwar with his kurta or achkan.
The fabric is silk. The footwear that goes with ethnic wear is heavily embroidered juttis (shoe) or mojaris. The jacket is the normal jacket length. then he would wear open sandals. The bandh-gala suit . . With western wear. In case the bridegroom is in dhoti.This is an East-West combination. both for the wedding as well as the reception purpose. terry wool. The trousers are the normal suit trousers. This is in suit material and is usually of a dark colour. The groom might choose to wear Western clothes. he would wear the appropriate shoes. Ltd. but with a mandarin collar. in that case he can go for a 3-piece or even 2-piece suit. or brocade. All Rights Reserved. 83 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
If a tailor is making your wedding wear. . This would considerably decrease the expense on attire. This is one day when clothes have to fit perfectly. The families could get these well in advance. wishes and desires. While these are ideal arrangements. Guests’ attire The colour of the attire that the lady guests wear. they are returned. is specified in the invitation. Gentlemen are usually dressed in dark colours if they wear suits. Shades of the colour could be chosen. Consequently last minute decisions are to be totally avoided if one is to have a stress-free wedding. it would be a good idea to get them in advance and get the last minute adjustments done by a local tailor. then fittings would need to be scheduled in to avoid any last minute glitches. if there is a theme. If they decide on Indian 84 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.All wedding dresses take a long time to make if they are being made to order. The two most important things are the bride’s and groom’s feelings. weddings usually happen in definite seasons. one has to keep aside ample amount of time for stitching and fittings While many sites offer online purchase of bridal wear and groom’s wear. everything depends on the family. and the budget. Once again. All Rights Reserved. especially since so many kinds of dress are needed for the different ceremonies and rituals. wedding attire for the bride and groom can be hired for the day. Even if one goes to a wedding boutique. Therefore. Ltd. it would be good to remember that in India. a point to keep in mind is the fit. and have them cleaned and made ready to wear. After the ceremony. It must be mentioned that while the wedding attire is very personal and makes for family heirlooms.
matching accessories are included. Male guests may have to wear a safa (turban) if custom dictates. then they would wear colourful. Even if the newly-weds are leaving for their own new home immediately after the wedding. . Otherwise the trousseau will 85 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Since she is going to a new home. All women wear flowers at the wedding. Clothes that are packed can include trousers and matching shirts/kurtis if you like western wear. The reason a bride is given a trousseau is because the first few days at in-laws place are the most challenging for her. It is best to send her to her new home prepared. embroidered kurtas or sherwan is in cream or dark colours. she might feel inhibited about asking for what she needs. THE BRIDE’S T ROUSSEAU Planning the trousseau is what takes a lot of time and energy.wear. with white/cream churidars. or bandh-gala (closed neck) suits in dark colours. Ltd. having a trousseau makes it a little easier for the bride… Along with different outfits in different materials for the first few days. All Rights Reserved.
.” Chinese Proverb 86 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. and all kinds of bath linen. The Ultimate addition to her Hope Chest is her trousseau. This includes bed sheets. Through the years.have the usual embroidered and embellished shalwar-kurta sets. table mats. nightwear and lingerie form an important part of her trousseau. These things play a significant role in knitting the generations together Some families have the tradition of starting a Hope Chest when their daughter is born. saris. lehengas. The bride will have to be a part of many gatherings from dinners to teas. curtains. An Indian bride is always given a box of linen as part of her trousseau. as her in-laws welcome her and introduce her to their family and social circle. this chest is filled up with something or the other that their daughter would need to start a family. as well as a whole range of shoes/sandals. in both bright and pastel shades for morning and evening wear. pillow cases. “Married couples who love each other tell each other a thousand things without talking. It is filled until the day the daughter gets married. All Rights Reserved. The vanity box contains all the cosmetics the new bride may need initially. Toiletries. The bride may also take some family heirlooms to her new home. blankets. bags are included. Different kinds of jewellery. Ltd. counterpanes. cushion covers. quilts. table cloths. Some clothes for ordinary home wear are also packed.
Music and Entertainment “Let us share the joys. unite. Ltd. We are word and meaning. All Rights Reserved. You are thought and I am sound.” Hindu Marriage Poem 87 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. .
these parties have become more creative and meaningful and are mostly meant for the joy and camaraderie rather than only drinking and sensual pleasure. All Rights Reserved. mark the period of transition from singlehood and independent lifestyle to a completely committed married life. BACHELOR/BACHELORETTE PARTIES The bachelor or the bachelorette parties. a damaged one… If the groom is not the socializing kind. marriage is celebrated like a festival. Flair of parties and outings are organized to enjoy the happiest moments in the life of a couple. Different occasions and customs are a part of Indian weddings. in India. As we know. Better to have a fresh groom. . This is usually a time for all-male talk and jokes. with lots of drinking. Having a stag party the night before a wedding just may not work out well for the groom. fireworks and gaiety. 88 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. and music will do the trick.During Indian weddings. Ltd. or someone’s house. music and entertainment play a very important part. a few rounds of drinks. then a small gathering of friends in a pub. dancing. Bachelor party for the groom A bachelor party for the groom is thrown by the best man/dearest friend/inner circle of friends. The fun of music and entertainment begins about a week before the actual ceremony. food. A kind of ‘the last time to let yourself go before you bite the dust’! It is always a good idea to plan these bachelor parties at least a week before the Big Day. In the recent past. than a hung-over one…or worse.
then planning and organizing it is important – right down to the last detail. close friends decide on a surprise party. In India. it would be the close female relatives who organize this. trusted friends. A few guidelines are: Have only close. the groom would not know about it till he gets to the venue. and not a general bash for everyone. . first you could take the groom. the night of the party. Sometimes. or meet up with the groom in the usual place where you all hang out. it is about the groom. Consequently drawing up the list of invitees and sending out the invitations is of paramount importance. Uninvited guests from the same workplace might make it embarrassing for the groom at best and messy at worst. Close relatives of the bride. Ltd. This is called a hen or bachelorette or stagette or kitchen tea party. A thumb rule is that whatever is planned should be in good taste. All Rights Reserved. Don’t invite the groom’s workmates unless you are prepared to invite them all. and then from there take him to the planned venue. Bachelorette party for the bride A girls’ night for the bride-to-be. Also. 89 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. It is also known as the bridal shower.However. is organized by her close friends. just so that there are no embarrassments for the groom. or common friends of the groom and bride may be invited. In fact. This can work out well if well-planned. Naturally. if a ‘do’ is being thought of. Make it clear that friends of friends are not welcome.
and sangeet. then a flower-seller could also be called who would make gajras (garlands) for all the women. though will definitely take place in the bride’s house. has a lot of gajras woven into her hair. in which case it would be organized in a hotel. some older ladies will have to be roped in to help organize this event.The bachelorette parties are usually organized in the bride’s home. The girls might want to have a bash. . Ltd. where the bride-to-be goes with a few of her intimate friends for a pampering-indulgent weekend. All Rights Reserved. A surprise party could also be planned for the bride-to-be. gajras are bought and given to each lady. and the married women tease and provoke the bride-to-be. If the budget permits. The bride-to-be. Since these are very elaborate. The mehendi ceremony. Gifts for the new home might also be given at this party. or haldi-mehendi ceremony. There would be a lot of food. music and dancing. Alternately. of course. The size of the hen party depends on the bride-to-be’s preferences. 90 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Another form of party which is of late gaining popularity is at a spa or resort. or in a close friend’s house.
Ltd. 91 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Therefore. Make sure everything is well organized. Whether it is a bachelor party or a bachelorette party. the groom’s and bride-to-be’s wishes should be respected. it is a part of the wedding memories! There are event management companies that you could work with to plan your friend’s bachelor or bachelorette party. All Rights Reserved. If gifts are given. a theme which could be worked around the traditional would be great! Traditionally these bachelor and the bachelorette parties are sponsored by the friends of the bride and the groom. then someone should make a record. However. The songs are usually traditional. After all. so a dholak (double-sided drum) should be available. so that thank-you notes can be sent after the wedding. they should be chosen and given fair notice so that they come prepared. Since there are professional henna artists available. which could be considered.A few tips: Plan this a few days before the wedding. . the budget for these parties is not included in the wedding budget. since the traditional parties have their own special charm. These companies have theme nights on offer. and everything should be elegantly done.
Professional mehendiwalis are called in. Bollywood movies also have a great selection of songs that can be used at this time. Bollywood has played its part in this. everyone at the ceremony gets the mehendi done on their palms. A dholak is a must because folk songs are also sung. or a disc can be burned. or her friends can do the selection along with her. . THE M EHENDI Music and entertainment are an inherent part of an Indian wedding. Or. Sometimes a bangle seller is also called in so that everyone can choose glass bangles to wear. While the bride has a very elaborate and intricate design made on her arms right up to her finger tips. the bride can either select the songs herself. Either the older ladies in the family who know the songs can sing these or a professional group can be hired for the occasion. Starting with the mehendi celebration the fun begins. 92 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Organizing the event A DJ can be arranged who will take care of the music. Ltd. All Rights Reserved. and played at the time of the mehendi. To a certain extent. These can be put into the playlist in an iPod.
THE BARAAT The baraat. The families of both the side come together and enjoy this event with songs and dance. The dhol and dholak are favourite instruments at this occasion. Special Features of Sangeet You can get family members and friends to put up a skit. Songs can be used to portray different anecdotes from the life of the bride and the groom or their courtship period. There are traditional songs that are sung at this occasion. Professional performers can be hired for the evening. You can have a theme for the sangeet. This is a slow procession bringing the groom. The sangeet ceremony is performed after the mehendi. Bollywood has a plethora of song for every ceremony related to the wedding. or a special dance. performances are often staged on these songs. Certain dances such as the garba. This ceremony is specially performed at the bride’s place. dandiya. it is best to go traditional with music from the shehnais. is when the bridegroom and his family come to the bride’s house (or marriage venue) for the wedding ceremony. For the wedding ceremony. THE S ANGEET The Sangeet is another festive occasion. or some particular item featuring the bride and groom. Ltd. 93 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. santoor or even the flute. All Rights Reserved. There’s lots of music at this ceremony. . bhangra are done at this ceremony. nadaswarams.
Excitement of the event Usually a band is hired. her friends give her a running commentary on what is happening. This is the moment everyone is waiting for in the bride’s house. especially as the baraat nears the marriage venue. In various cultures. 94 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. . hence the commentary. or a close family friend can sing a special solo. the bride may choose to have the mehendi and sangeet ceremonies. stopping frequently on the way. it is traditional music that is used: the Bridal Chorus is played when the bride enters the church. The Church Choir can sing a special song. Ltd. Other music includes hymns or anthems that are special for the bride and groom. Moreover. the groom’s parents join in the dance. while a group of groom’s friends and family members dance. and appropriate to the ceremony. and the Wedding March is played after the wedding ceremony is over and the bride and groom walk through the congregation leaving the church. Firecrackers are burst on this occasion. and while the bride cannot leave her room. which belts out filmy numbers. at the Church. Sometimes as they reach the home. All Rights Reserved. While the Christian wedding does not have the baraat. it is considered ominous for the bride to watch the baraat of the groom.
Sometimes. The song played for their dance is their favourite song. Otherwise. in good taste. It’s the time when everyone can let their hair down. or a professional DJ can be hired for the occasion. THE RECEPTION The reception is the most important post-wedding event in India. a dance troupe is hired to give a performance. and the first dance belongs to the bride and groom. . Entertainment associated with the Reception There may be dancing. a special song can be played if there is a cake-cutting ceremony. either classical dance or something contemporary. Subsequently. This is a time when guests generally go to felicitate the bride and groom. Ltd. One of the family members can take over this duty. and everyone is out to have a good time. All the tension associated with the wedding is over. All Rights Reserved. there can be soft soothing music played gently in the background. The choice of music should be vast and pleasing. 95 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
Ltd. Each guest is given a candle which they light from the Unity Candle. All Rights Reserved. Sky lanterns – You can get personalized ones which can be released into the sky at the end of the reception. In fact keep a table booked for late night binges and get-togethers. They light up the sky and look wonderful. there should be a picture of the guest and a line or two from them. arrive. Keeping children occupied is necessary and a magician. In case you are of a classical bent of mind and prefer classical music and dance. or get professional entertainers. Having qawwalis and sher-shairi evenings is also a popular form of entertainment at this time. If you find out that they have any food preferences. 96 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. It can be in the form of a book. Ideally. . Classical dancers can also be contacted to give performances. you could organize a mehfil or mini concert. Breaking the ice and getting to know them is best done over a friendly meal. symbolizing their witnessing and participation at your wedding. A Unity Candle – This is a candle which the bride and groom light together. where you can get professional classical musicians to perform. You can have your guests take part in this evening. or a movie can be organized so that they won’t come in every one’s way. Since a wedding is also a time when relatives. A fireworks display to end the night. or games. you can get your favourite haunt to arrange for these. Guest Book – This can be done in many ways. MORE E NTERTAINMENT MANTRA There are various other occasions during an Indian wedding where fun and entertainment play an important part. and make it a family entertainment. you should attend to them. who you may not have seen for many years. This in itself can be quite taxing. It is therefore a good idea to plan out something for late night where you can relax.
There are bound to be lulls during the course of the wedding. This is also the time when old sorrows. If you enjoy fairs. toasting marshmallows. and kept occupied leaving their parents time 97 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. unhappy times. choirs. Caricaturists can give everyone caricatures as a memento of a fun time together! There can be small games organized. . and regrets can be buried. one-act plays. Since this is essentially a time for bonding and picking up threads. but usually after the day’s chores are over. Ltd. only close friends may be included. including ‘Finders Keepers’ where clues are given to find the hidden object. Comedians. and everyone reminisces. It could be skits. If the family is musically inclined. get together is ideal. swaps anecdotes. A Karaoke Box can be set up in one side of the reception venue and friends and family members could go and sing a few lines of their favorite songs Sometimes. It is also the responsibility of the hosts to see to it that the children are looked after. Rides can be organized too for the children. recitations. All Rights Reserved. jugglers. space permitting. It can be around a bonfire. or lounge around aimlessly. depending on the age and inclination of the family members. old disagreements. It is a time of renewal. sing-song evenings can be a perfect time for bonding and catching up. It is the responsibility of the families to create happy and good memories for the guests. then one day can be assigned to creating a fair. At these family gatherings. having a certain amount of time every day when the whole family. shares photographs. families put up a small stage in their yard where everyone gets a chance to put up some entertainment for the rest of the family. musical performances. kids included. or munching snacks. and generally brings everyone else up-to-date on their lives. Entertainment plans are made keeping in mind the guests who are coming for the wedding. mime artists. You wouldn’t want your guests to be at a loose end. and magicians can entertain the group. it is family time.
so that their favourite foods are included. must be served on time. especially if it is an outside caterer. All Rights Reserved. One evening can be given to fast food binging! 98 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. Thoughtful hosts try to and find out the preferences of the guests. Meals. .to pick up old threads.
Some Fun Facts
“I seem to have loved you in numberless forms, numberless times, in life after life, in age after age forever.”
Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd.writer extraordinaire Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941), Indian All Rights Reserved.
An Indian wedding has several distinct and diversified features which you won’t be able to get anywhere else. There are several norms and rituals which need to be followed religiously. In each of these rituals there is a special place for different members of the family. While some of the rituals are need to be done by the brother, some are done by the sister-in-law, while some other rituals are meant for the maternal uncle. These rituals are meant to involve and unite all the members of the family. These customs add a special charm to these wedding ceremonies and have individual and extraordinary significance associated with them.
SOME FUN FACTS
Some of the interesting facts about Indian marriages are listed below. There is a ritual where the sisters-in-law (could include female cousins too), hide the shoes of the new brotherin-law, and demand money for them. It is only when the brother-in-law gives them the money that they return his shoes. Among the Parsis, the new brother-in-law has to keep his hands in water till he promises to give money to the sisters-in-law. Sometimes, the sisters-in-law threaten to pour milk on the groom’s shoes unless he gives them money. Another ritual is when seven strands of thread are used to tie the hands of the bride and groom. These threads are removed only when the sisters-in-law are paid off! A Gujarati custom is when the bride’s mother tries to catch the bridegroom’s nose when he comes with his baraat. This is a reminder that since he is going to take away the daughter of the house, he has to look after and
cherish her. A Marwari custom requires the groom to sit in his Mother in laws laps and is given gifts upon doing so A shallow basin is filled with a mix of water and milk, and a ring and some coins are put into this basin. The basin is then placed in front of the bride and groom and they are given seven chances each to fish out the ring. The one who gets the ring first is supposed to be the dominant person in the marriage. When the groom brings his new bride to his house, his sisters close the door and refuse to open it till he gives them money and gifts. In some communities, if the bride and groom are holding each other’s right hand for the pheras, a sacred cloth is placed over the hands to ward off the evil eye. Among the Punjabis, a set of chudas (red and ivory bangles) are given to the bride to wear for the wedding ceremony by the maternal uncle. This is considered a good omen for the bride and is supposed to bring good luck to her in her new home. Punjabi brides wear kaleeres which are silver or gold plated ornaments tied to the chudas. She is supposed to shake her kaleere over the unmarried girls in the family. The girl on whose head the kaleere falls is the next to get married. Chero pakaryo – this is a fun custom in Gujarati weddings where the groom has to pull at the sari of his motherin-law as she passes, indicating that he wants more gifts Aathwas – this is a Kashmiri custom. The couple is required to cross their arms and hold hands. Their hands are covered by a cloth. They are now told to pull off the engagement ring. The one who pulls off the ring first is going to be the head of the family!
Fridays and Saturdays are not lucky in some communities. the bride and groom are not allowed to look at each other. All Rights Reserved. The bride should not make her own wedding dress. Thursdays. . WELL KNOWN SUPERSTITIONS We all become a bit superstitious when it comes to an important event like marriage. Only if there is no other alternative should the marriage be arranged at a time other than the auspicious marriage seasons. The two surnames should not begin with the same letter. Kaal ratri is a Bengali custom. On the second night after the wedding. Ltd. Here are some important points to avoid while the ceremony is on. There are pundits who will work out alternative spellings. Of course the couple could use their individual passports and the bride can legally change her name when they get back. In case there is a rehearsal. 102 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Another Kashmiri custom is that the eldest aunt refuses to let the newly-weds enter their home unless she is given a gift of cash or jewellery. The bride should not write her new name with the groom’s surname before the wedding. The number 13 is avoided by all. you might like to keep some of them in mind. she should leave a few stitches undone. The bride should not wear her complete wedding dress before the wedding day. While you may not want to follow all the superstitions mentioned. This is a point to be taken into consideration when planning a honeymoon abroad.
She should not come back. 103 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. After she is fully dressed and ready. The bride should cover her head and face. This is to confuse evil spirits. During the grihapravesh in her new home. though. the bride should take one last look at herself in the mirror before leaving. The Maid of honour and bridesmaids are dressed very much like the bride. The veil is to protect her from the evil eye or evil spirits. Ltd. the bride has to put her right foot forward first. . All Rights Reserved. to look at herself.
All Rights Reserved. English Romantic poet 104 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.Important Legal Formalities “Two souls with but a single thought. . Ltd. two hearts that beat as one.” John Keats (1795-1821).
young people choose their own mates and not necessarily from the same religious group (or caste) or State. then eclectic ceremonies can be planned out. Sikhs. which govern marriage and divorce. All Indian marriages have to be registered. it has to be registered in order to be considered legal. The different marriage laws are: The Christian Marriage Act The Hindu Marriage Act (includes Hindus. Further. Even if the marriage register in the Church is signed by the bride. Buddhists and Jains) The Marriage and divorce Act for Parsis The Marriage Act for the Muslims The Special Marriage Act There are some common conditions such as the groom should be 21 years of age and the bride should not be younger than 18 years of age. Make sure someone in the family is deputed to find out all the details. especially because of its mind-boggling diversity. all unique and different. 105 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. MARRIAGE ACTS & R EGISTRATION OF MARRIAGES Increasingly in India. All Rights Reserved. if they go by their parents’ wishes. Still. on setting up their new home. their parents and witnesses. they should not be within the prohibited degree of the relationship. . They may opt for a basic ceremony preferring to use the money they would have spent on a wedding. groom. There are personal laws in each religion. and get the necessary documentation done so that there are no lapses here. Knowing the marriage laws in India helps. Ltd.
Further. the marriage is a written legal contract.For a Christian marriage. Each partner is allowed to include conditions. banns have to be published three Sundays before the wedding. Here the registration is taken as the actual marriage. . In the Muslim Marriage Act. provided he can treat them equally. Ltd. Here again. There are certain rules which have to be fulfilled. 106 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. the notice for marriage is put up 30 days before the fixed wedding date in the Marriage Officer’s office. All Rights Reserved. it has to be communicated to the Marriage Officer within the 30 day period. if anyone has any objection. The Hindu Marriage Act provides registration of a marriage that has been solemnized. The Special Marriage Act is for people who are from different communities. Both parties have to appear before the Marriage Registrar along with their parents/guardians/witnesses one month from the date of the marriage. it is communicated to the Parish priest within this period. It also permits a man to have four wives. If anyone objects to the marriage.
The Countdown Begins. “Trust is the first step to love.” Munshi Premchand (1880-1936). .. Foremost Hindi-Urdu writer of 20th century 107 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.. Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
108 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. . Decide whether there is there to be a separate engagement ceremony or will all the ceremonies be on one day. or a theme based wedding. The date can then be finalized. 30 days prior to the wedding day. or whether you would like to have a wedding planning agency involved. If the wedding is to be a religious ceremony. the Panchang. contract that is required has to be worked on so that there is no problem at the last minute. Are you thinking of a traditional wedding. All Rights Reserved. 12 MONTHS TO GO The date is decided – either by the couple or according to the Vedic calendar. in his office. then the place of worship has to be contacted to see if the date you have chosen is convenient for them. You may even feel anxious and confused about deciding upon events and things. here is a complete checklist that can help you out. Choose two or three options in case the first choice is not available or suitable. Decide whether you would like to handle the wedding yourself. details regarding documentation required have to be worked on. If you want your marriage ceremony to be the perfect one.After you choose your life partner and plan to get married. If the wedding is a Civil Marriage. Ltd. there are several arrangements that need to be done. All legal paperwork. Start checking websites or talking to family and friends about details of the various ceremonies involved. and notice has to be put up. In case of Christian wedding banns have to be published three Sundays before the wedding in the Church that the family attends. The priest. documentation. maulvi. purohit. The Marriage Officer has to be met. religious leader has to be free on that day as well.
Other non-religious ceremonies and rituals are decided upon too at this time. or keep a budget spreadsheet ready. Either set up a separate wedding account. Start corresponding with family and friends you would like to invite giving them the date of the wedding and the place where it is to be conducted. Set the budget. sangeet. Venues for the mehendi. 109 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. bachelor/bachelorette parties have to be decided. Ltd. then the requirements for conducting the marriage there have to be found out. In case the wedding is to be in another place. you will need to work them into the traditional ceremony in consultation with the priest. If a loan is to be taken. You can tell them that the formal invitation will follow. You might want to include certain rituals in the main ceremony. . or reservations to be made will then need to be obtained/done. you want to give them fair notice so that they keep themselves free for the happy occasion. Informing them informally helps them to mark the date in their calendars and make travel reservations. but since you are keen that they attend. In that case. it would be good to contact your bank at this point. Any clearances required. All Rights Reserved.
These are recorded and the expenses are put down as they are made. If you are getting people from out of town. Remember: you NEED to be in control of your budget – you would not want to impoverish yourself. All Rights Reserved. Ltd. decide whether you are going to send them their tickets. distant relatives. family friends. Think about colours and accessories. Besides the people you definitely want to come. and neighbours. designers. This is an expense that will have to be factored in. This will help you decide on what should be budgeted and how much leeway you have. accommodation and catering expenses will help you decide on your guest list. The bride-to-be and groom need to start thinking about their wedding wear. have meetings with them. this is the time to start going to them and talking to them about what you are looking for. If there are boutiques that deal with wedding wear. In case your close friends or close relatives are willing to have house guests. This is one sure way of keeping on top of the budget. Get estimates for everything. these can be worked on as well. and get their rates. Remember that out-of-towners will need to be put up. and catered to. Consequently this is the time to explore hotels/clubs/country houses/guest houses to find out rates. your guest list would include extended family. both yours and your parents’ colleagues at work. Travel. The bride-to-be and the groom now start thinking about and getting ready for the big day. fabrics. . This is a good time to see if you have left anyone out. 10 MONTHS TO GO Start on the guest list. whether it is a style that 110 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Draw up a list of caterers. Importantly it is a good time to pick up threads of relationships and friendships. tailors. or worse land in a debt you cannot repay. Check out styles.
If you want your wedding to be colour coded. This will help you in your final decision and choice. If you are getting your wedding wear made to order. Usually the best friend/friends of the bride-to-be and groom organize the bachelor/bachelorette party. The food and drink. 111 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. . so that there is enough time to get the things that the bride-to-be would need. if your family or you decide to host it. However. then this has to be kept in mind while choosing all the different outfits. then keep time for fittings. All Rights Reserved. The clothes of the parents and siblings are also decided at this time. The entertainment. You will also get an idea of costs. Ltd. The mehendi ceremony and the Sangeet are the other two important rituals that have to be organized. Certain points have to be kept in mind: The venue. This is one thing that usually gets left for the last and then there is panic buying which never works out. Lingerie and accessories are also to be decided along with different clothes. The bride-to-be and her parents also need to start work on the trousseau. then you have to decide: The venue. The guest list. The guest list. The mehendiwali and the bangle seller if bangles are going to be worn at this ceremony have to be arranged.will suit you and that you will be comfortable in.
and their charges. If the dandiya is to be done. thought has to be given to a photographer and videographer. If any entertainment is being planned for the days preceding the wedding and the wedding day itself. At this stage. Ltd. If you have planned on favours to be given on the wedding day to the guests. All Rights Reserved. or whether you are going to buy them. then calling in a DJ to handle the music. ensure that there is enough 112 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Marriage venue. It is a good idea to have one person who is close to the bride-to-be and the groom to handle the tiny details such as: Who will have the garlands ready for the Jai mala? Who has charge of the rings and/or the mangalsutra? Who keeps the gifts of clothing that arrive from the bride-to-be’s home or the groom’s home and which has to be changed into during the wedding ceremony? Start thinking about the decorations for the: Wedding home. the dandiya sticks have to be organized. The place where daily meals for out-of-towners attending the wedding are to be. The venue for the Wedding Reception. and where the traditional musicians are going to sit. decide whether you and the family are going to make them. the people concerned should be contacted to know if they are free. . Getting the dholak. If so decided. the place for the Jai mala. Either way. the mandap.
time. 9 MONTHS TO GO Wedding stationery: Invitations: Simple or elaborate. if you have decided on one. 113 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Furthermore. Book the beauty parlour or beauticians who will come home and attend to the bride and all the lady guests in both households. and find out how much it is going to cost so that it can be factored into the budget. then would you like a table plan and name/place cards. Printed vegetarian and non-vegetarian menus. since the bride and lady guests wear flowers (gajras) in their hair. and a final decision made early enough. Directions to the venue. . Order of worship if it is a Christian wedding. All Rights Reserved. It is also a good time to start thinking about the wedding vows. Book the florist – which are the venues that require flowers. RSVP. A short description of the various ceremonies and their meaning and significance for the guests. Ltd. Thank you cards. If you are planning on a formal dinner reception. has to be made at this time. The order for the wedding cake. and what kind and colour of flowers. this has to be thought of.
then transporting the bride-to-be. and visas etc applied for. Taking all the guests back after the wedding. and the number of days the newly-weds are to be there. (If lists are made and all routes planned. All Rights Reserved. Once this is decided. Back to the place of departure. then reservations and bookings should be made. From the accommodation to the wedding home every day. If travel abroad is decided. then this can be given to the person in charge so that there are no glitches and everyone reaches their destinations on time) Settle on the honeymoon – the location. Ltd. . the groom. the parents and all the guests to that venue. 114 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. 7 MONTHS TO GO All transportation needs to be booked at this point: From place of arrival to the accommodation. If the wedding is to be at another venue. then the necessary documentation has to be done.
Adjustments can be made if needed. Moreover. This should not be done in a hurry. if required. and hair style that you want. you could try out your bridal make-up and hair style so that you know how you are going to look. Check out the make-up you are going to use. All Rights Reserved. The wedding rings and mangalsutra design have to be decided on and preferably bought. can be made. You may want some engraving to be made on the rings as well. Ltd. If possible. Start deciding on the kind of jewellery to be worn on the wedding day. . then talks with the jewelers should be initiated. it is important that the hair style does not interfere with the veil/ghunghat and you are comfortable. We are looking at long hours and 115 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. and changes. Begin the beauty and the diet regime if you need to shed a few kilos before the wedding 3 MONTHS TO GO Go for your first trials of the wedding wear. If there is a design that has to be copied. and what is required as part of the trousseau.
2 MONTHS TO GO Get confirmatory RSVPs. then other small mementos can be given – something which is specific to your family tradition. as this is auspicious news and in India the custom is to ‘sweeten the mouth’ of the person you are giving the auspicious news to. If you like. Depute someone to keep a count of who all are coming.it is absolutely essential to ensure that what you wear and how you dress does not cause any discomfort or stress. They will know that you really want them to attend the wedding. For those who live in the same town. Visit the venue for the reception. the done thing is to take the invitation card personally to their homes. Start buying your trousseau. their arrival and departure details. see to it that there are enough places for each guest to sit comfortably. the size of and what kind of centrepiece the tables should have. or something specific to the location of your home. If there is to be entertainment. These are from people who live out of town. and where they are to stay? In case you have not heard from them. and for close relatives. Send out the invitations. a phone call to them is in order. Ltd. Decide on how the tables are going to be placed. Sweets are also given along with the card. 116 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. . A photograph of the bride and groom is also sometimes enclosed with the thank you card/note. then that area has to be marked out. All Rights Reserved. Keeping a list of guests who attend is necessary so that you can send them personalized thank you cards/notes after the wedding.
sit together to ensure that the music chosen adds to the atmosphere. Start checking to see if your trousseau is making progress. Music for the various ceremonies is to be worked on. Confirm menus for all the meals. Bachelor/bachelorette parties happen in this last month. This is the time when the bride-to-be and the groom need to start relaxing. and consulted with about the kind of music you would like to have. prayers and vows (if you want to add to or change the traditional wedding vows). If you have decided on a DJ to handle the music. or any other ceremony. 1 MONTH TO GO Both the bride-to-be and the groom need to go for the final round of fitting. All Rights Reserved. then besides the traditional music for the procession and recession. If you are going in for a Church service. this will have to be booked. For the other wedding ceremonies. Confirm all the bookings. . the hymns. anthems. It is advisable to have these parties at least a week or 10 days before the Big Day. this is the time to consult with him/her and decide on the music to be used. as your guests can sign their names in and write a few lines for the bride and groom. you will need professional musicians for the main ceremony. Your trousseau should be in the final stages of readiness for packing. If you want a live band at the reception. In case your friends are handling the music. 117 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. sangeet and any other rituals/ceremonies are slated in. Guest book – this is also a good idea. Ltd. lesson readings. Mehendi.
Check with the caterer and update him with the final guest count and any other changes. for the convenience of the guests. Plan out the wedding schedule and hand over printed copy of those all the vendors and the guests. specifically their date of validity. Mind and body relaxation whenever possible. Brides must prepare their emergency kit keeping all the necessary stuff and entrusting the kit to one of her bridesmaids. if any. this is the time to schedule it. Include the timings for snacks and meals also. If you want to have a rehearsal. they need to be told now so that they have enough time to prepare. All Rights Reserved. jewelery to bags and clutches. ranging from the dress. Take down the vehicle number and the contact number of the chauffeur driving every vehicle. In case any of your friends are to speak at the reception. . 118 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. 10 DAYS TO GO Make a final confirmation with various vendors and other services providers. Try out everything. Visiting an aromatherapy center or spa clinic four to five days before the ceremonies begin helps a lot in enlivening the spirit. A final round of fitting is in order. Packing for the honeymoon and final check of all the documents. shoes. Check the transportation arrangement and incorporate changes. Get a complete health check up done and brides can consult gynecologists for ways to prevent their courses from coinciding with the wedding or the honeymoon. Final dance rehearsals if lavish arrangements have been made for the sangeet.
If you wear lenses. ensure that the entire luggage is packed and ready. Check all the accessories are ready. Sleep or take nap whenever it is possible during the ceremonies. Check with the person you have requested to keep the wedding rings/mangalsutra. Try and have an early night so that you are rested for the next day. Send your personal luggage to the place where you are to spend the first night. and has settled into their new home. If you are leaving for your honeymoon the same day. and all your travel arrangements are in place. Arrange for a person who will receive all the gifts and keep a record of them. Ensure that the Jai malas are ready. or do you? Finally: After the couple returns from the Honeymoon. Ltd. then do not under any circumstances use it for more than 10-15 hours at a stretch. You do not want a sore eye on your wedding day. 119 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. if he/she has them. Bride and Groom often find themselves overworked and bereft of all the energy due to the long ceremonies that take place one after the other. All Rights Reserved. Gifts to be given: This is a personal gesture and its importance lies in the bonds that are made and preserved. it is time to send out the Thank You cards to your close relatives and guests. 1 DAY TO GO Hang up all the clothes the bride-to-be and groom are going to wear. or their rooms in the family home. or get the beauticians over to the home. The bride-to-be and her friends and other lady family members go to the Beauty parlour. Decorate all the venues. .
THINGS THAT CAN GO WRONG “I first learned the concepts of non-violence in my marriage. For your convenience we have listed some points that need to be taken care of. All Rights Reserved. Your budget spreadsheet should show if you have taken a loan. Don’t forget to factor in fees that have to be paid. Even the simplest traditional wedding costs a lot of money. try. Work out an itemized budget. estimates. Ltd. donations that have to be given. no expense is really small – everything should be factored in and noted down. .” Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948). 120 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Make lists for everything – This will help you not to get caught up in niggling details. to stay within the budget. and money spent. It is a good idea when making estimates to keep some leeway. and importantly will keep you focused on the big picture. pertinent details of the loan. legal fees. In fact your planner should have a column for estimated cost and beside it a column showing the actual cost… However. Common errors happen in estimates taken. Father of the Nation You will have to be very careful about going ahead with the marriage plan. Keep a certain amount of money for emergency expenses. as far as is possible. or in the records that are kept of money spent. and other small expenses. advance payments made. In fact. The budget – this is the area where the greatest errors can happen.
You. and then get it all down from the vendors in writing. and certainly not for the last day. This is a time of togetherness with family – make sure that everyone is included. When taking estimates. All Rights Reserved. and who will see them through. This is also a time when no one can say ‘No’ to the bride-to-be or the groom. A rush-rush invitation will never be welcome. but it pays off big dividends. shop around for the best deals. . Do not leave anything for the last week. Focus on the task in hand. therefore. Check. Try to keep the perspective and concentrate on doing one thing at a time. Negotiate with the places where you are putting up your guests so that you are assured of the best deal. This way there is no chance of the prices/costs changing. sometimes. 121 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Try to be and stay realistic. remember that you want happy memories. It sounds contradictory. Good organization is tedious and time consuming. confirm. Sometimes hard decisions might need to be taken. If directions to the venue are given they should be clear and unambiguous. but everyone will be able to enjoy the wedding only if every little detail is in place before the big day. everyone will want to give their advice. Remember. As this is a distracting time and a thousand things will need your simultaneous attention. and double-check all bookings well before the last month. and do not leave your parents to pick up bitter pieces. Ensure that the invitation is worded perfectly. see that any communication is perfectly written. In fact. Also make sure that you have enough time to comfortably visit all those to whom you have to personally convey the invitation. Ltd. Form a good team of those whom you can entrust with specific responsibilities. However. need to know which to keep and which to politely sift out.
. All Rights Reserved. Enjoy the occasion! 122 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Travel plans are often jeopardized in India due to sudden delays in the arrival and departure of the trains and the planes. Security is an important issue and make sure you have perked up the security arrangements at all the possible places connected with the wedding. A traditional Indian wedding is a time when two whole families get together. special security arrangements are made in case of destination wedding as the entire bridal procession with all its expensive stuff will be travelling to a different place. Ltd.
I am Heaven. thou art Earth. thou art verse. I am song.” Atharva Veda 123 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.Wedding Traditions of India Book Supplement “I am this. thou art she. Becoming parents of children. We two together shall live here. Ltd. . All Rights Reserved.
are distinct from one another. The parents of the bride-to-be go to the groom’s home for this ceremony. An astrologer is consulted. Ltd. RELIGIOUS WEDDINGS India is a country where people of different cultures and religions come together and live peacefully. So before going ahead with an Indian marriage. close friends. Their rituals. it is good to have a complete idea about different styles and patterns of marriage and what the marriage rituals are. then they may exchange garlands and/or rings. Each has its own tradition. a meal can be hosted. Usually the bride-to-be and the groom are not present at this ceremony. This is called the Sagaai or Roka or the Tilak. an announcement is made. It has unity in diversity.India is a uniquely different country. . If so desired. All Rights Reserved. the bride-to-be and groom are present. culture and heritage. There are diversified forms of wedding according to the religion and region. The Hindu Wedding The proposal for the ‘girl’ and ‘boy’ is made by close or extended family members. After the proposal has been accepted by both families. since the agreement is formalized between the elders of the two families. or a well-wisher. The different types of weddings according to religion are explained below. Sweets and gifts are exchanged between the two families. being different. 124 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. If. The auspicious date/dates and an idea of the location is also suggested by him (specifics are worked out later by the families). He matches the horoscopes and provides information on the ceremonies that needs to be performed.
Vidaai. 2.1. 125 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. On the wedding day The Baraat from the groom’s house arrives at the bride’s house Varmala Kanyadaan and Saptpadi The marriage ceremony is held according to traditional rituals. sandalwood and rosewater. The bride is smeared with paste of turmeric. Post-wedding ceremonies Reception. this is when the bride is formally sent to the bridegroom’s house. Ltd. . Sangeet ceremony – This is meant especially for the ladies of the two families. Haldi ceremony – This ceremony is held on the morning of the wedding day. 3. Pre-wedding rituals Mehendi ceremony – Mehendi or henna is applied on the hands of the to-be-bride and hymns or folk songs are sung during this ceremony. All Rights Reserved.
The groom arrives at the Church with his Best Man and Page Boy a little before the wedding. The parish priest blesses the young couple.The Christian Wedding If the couple has not chosen each other. and Maid of honour. the groom goes in and stands at the altar with the Best Man and the Page Boy carrying the rings. 2. Ltd. On the wedding day The bride and groom leave their respective homes after prayers and blessings. The Flower girls are the first in the Bridal procession and they scatter flower petals on the aisle as they move towards their places near the altar. close or extended family members decide on the ‘girl’ and ‘boy’. The couple exchange rings. The stag or bachelor party. the date for an engagement ceremony is fixed. followed by the bridesmaids. 1. The bride arrives at the Church with her immediate family. . 126 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The Maid of honour is next. They may decide to take a vow at this time. At the appropriate time. and talks to them about the seriousness and sanctity of marriage. This takes place either at the house of the brideto-be or a venue chosen by the two families. All Rights Reserved. Pre-wedding rituals The bridal shower or bachelorette party. The bridesmaids and flower girls arrive at the same time too. After the bond is formalized.
There are also selected readings from the Bible. and pronounces the benediction. During the service there may be hymns and an anthem chosen for the occasion by the bride and groom. The priest may or may not give a short sermon about the sanctity of marriage. Lastly the Priest pronounces them man and wife. the couple walks down the aisle of the Church. All Rights Reserved. . To the Wedding March. 3. 127 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Here. either the traditional vows are used or the bride and groom may choose their own vows. The Priest conducts the Wedding Service. Vows are taken by the bride and groom and wedding rings are exchanged. The couple goes to the vestry and signs the marriage register with witnesses. The Buddhist wedding There are no formal ceremonies in a Buddhist wedding. The couple can have a registered wedding. The bride leaves for the groom’s home. Ltd. or they may go to one of the few Buddhist temples that are licensed to conduct marriage ceremonies. blesses the young couple and the congregation. something which holds special meaning for them. Post-wedding ceremonies The reception. The bride walks down the aisle to the strains of the Bridal March on the arm of her father to meet the bridegroom.
the groom’s family. decide on a date on which the proposal can be made to the ‘girl’s’ family. and the proposal is made.A Buddhist wedding takes place in two parts. groom and the two families. Chessian. and do not want anything to go wrong. The bride and groom bow in front of the Buddha.This is not strictly necessary. all the guests share the Madyan which is a ceremonial drink. and the couple recites the wedding vows that are found in the Sigilovdda Sutta.This is the betrothal ceremony. go to the Buddhist temple. On the wedding day The bride. 128 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The maternal uncle of the bride has pride of place in this ceremony. Ltd. a red paste is put on the foreheads of the bride and groom. They light candles and incense sticks. The couple makes offerings of flowers. After prayers. Pre-wedding rituals Matching of horoscopes. but many people are superstitious. The Buddhist part: where the couple offers prayers in a Buddhist temple and gives gifts to the monks. Prayers are offered. food. along with the lama of the temple in their locality. 2. after the horoscopes have been matched. sweets and money. Sometimes. All Rights Reserved. The parents of the couple then put a loop of strings on the heads of the bride and groom joining them together. So. . 1. The Vandana. The non-Buddhist part: where the couple follows traditions and customs specific to their families. Tisarana and Pancasila hymns are sung.
Lagna Patrika Vachan . The elders then bless the groom. a coconut. The Sagaai .The groom wears the traditional headgear. the brother of the bride-to-be puts a tilak on the groom’s forehead. Pre-wedding rituals Laghana Lekhan . After the Vachan is read. The Jain wedding Jains are strictly devoted to their community and prefer to marry within their community. Their style of marriage is very sophisticated with a grand public announcement and a variety of rituals. The couple leaves for their new home. Ltd.The Sagaai or engagement ceremony takes place the same day as the Lagna Patrika Vachan is read.In this ritual. All Rights Reserved. Post-wedding ceremonies There may be a wedding feast or reception. so that the child born becomes Jain only. a puja is done in the house of the bride-to-be. The mahurat. Once it is decided by the priest. or auspicious time of the marriage is decided at this ritual. 129 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. sweets. He also gives him gifts which include clothes.3. Close friends and relatives attend. . 1. the date is sent to the groom’s house. and then the priest reads out the aforementioned letter which has come from the house of the bride-to-be and which gives the date for the marriage ceremony. washes his hands and performs the Vinayakyantra puja. money and a ring.
130 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. On the wedding day The Baraat from the groom’s house arrives at the bride’s house. But one main difference between the two forms of wedding is. on the other hand Sikhs follow their holy book Adi Grantha or Guru Granth Sahib during the wedding ceremony. Post-wedding ceremonies Ashirvad – The elders of the family bless the couple. . Jina Grahe Dhan Arpana tradition of giving alms to the Jain temple. Ltd. 3. while Hindus use Vedic texts. All Rights Reserved. Mada Mandap . The Mangal Geet. The Granthi Bandhan and Phere. Sva Graha Aagaman or welcoming of the bride at her new home. Reception. These rituals are performed by a priest. The Sikh wedding The customs followed during a Sikh wedding is somewhat similar to Hindu weddings.The Mada Mandap takes place one or two days before the wedding in the houses of the groom and the bride-to-be. 2. The Kanyavaran or Kanyapradan.
gold mohre (coins) and a kada (bangle) from the bride’s father or guardian. On the wedding day Gharoli ceremony – The Gharoli ceremony is celebrated at the groom’s house where his sisters-in-laws and other female relatives fill in an earthen pitcher or Gharoli with water from a well or Gurudwara. The groom gets a gold ring. turmeric. Ltd.1. Milni – This is the main ceremony and is held in the Gurudwara. Gana or sacred thread ceremony – During this ceremony a chunni or a veil is gifted to the bride by the groom’s mother and aunties. it is followed by Lawaan when the bride and the groom hold both ends of a scarf and takes four rounds around the Granth Sahib and then they are declared husband and wife. 2. Pre-wedding rituals Shagun or tilak – It is better known as Kurmai. . rosewater and cream called ubatan is applied on the bride’s body and she is then scrubbed clean. 3. Early morning a paste of sandal. Mehendi and Vatna – Prior to the wedding the Vatna ceremony is conducted. The Sikh wedding normally takes place before noon. On this occasion the bride’s family goes to the groom’s family with sweets. Several hymns are sung and the couple is made to sit before the Adi Granth (religious book of the Sikhs). Post-wedding ceremonies 131 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. jewellery and clothes as gifts. All Rights Reserved. The priest tells them about the obligations of marriage.
Parsi weddings are mostly conducted during the evening. It is a mehendi-haldi ceremony. turmeric. length-wise and breadthwise. The ‘achoo meecho’ or eliminating the evil eye is compulsory before every single ceremony. All Rights Reserved. Ltd. betel nut. Traditional songs are sung. Vidaai or doli. which they name as the Behram Roj. dates and a piece of coconut. accompanied by prayers by the family priest. after sunset. Adarni is three days before the wedding day. friends and neighbours sits down for a meal together to celebrate the occasion. . 132 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Family. A fifth lady sits in the middle with a dry turmeric powder. The families of the bride and groom plant a young tree (usually a mango tree) in a pot. The groom’s family comes to the bride’s home with gifts for the bride. The Parsi wedding Fire plays a very important role during Parsi wedding as they consider it to be the most sacred. The Supra nu Murat is the day before the wedding day. The Parsi weddings are mostly performed either on the first day of the month which they call Hormazd Roe or on the twentieth day of the month. This is made into a paste and applied to the bride and groom. These supras are exchanged seven times among the four women: cross-wise. The plant is to be watered for 8 days then transplanted. and four married women are given a supra containing betel leaf. Pre-wedding rituals Madhavsaro .It is celebrated four days before the wedding day. Reception. None of the rituals are complete without the use of fire. The pot is then placed at the entrance of the home. 1.
She can then demand gifts from the groom. The bride leaves for the groom’s house where the groom’s mother again performs the achimuchu ceremony. The Ara Antar which is a variation of the first look of Hindu marriage. The groom is in Parsi Dagli and Feta which is a white long kurta-like shirt. On the wedding day According to the Zoroastrian faith. . 3. sprinkles milk on his show and removes the seven strands that the priest had tied around the couple during the ceremony. Ltd. The bride is dressed in her Madhavate which is a white sari with heavy gold embroidery. and a black cap. All Rights Reserved. Post-wedding Reception. Nahan . the time immediately after sunset or very early in the morning is auspicious for marriage.The home is decorated with rangoli. The Chero bandhvanu when the couple exchanges rings. 133 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Dressing in traditional attire. The haath borvanu -This is when the bride’s sister puts the groom’s hand in a glass of water. The Achumichu is performed at the Fire Temple.2.
The marriage rituals usually revolve around the bride and the groom approving their marriage in front of the witness. and the two families exchange sweets and fruits. Magni is when the close family of the groom visit the bride. The bride’s brother and the groom share a glass of sherbet. It is held either in the bride’s or the groom’s home. On the wedding day The baraat arrives from the groom’s home bringing the groom. Elaborate mehendi designs are then made on her hands and feet.This is when the priest asks blessings from the Almighty Allah. a silver or gold coin wrapped in silk is given to the bride by the groom’s mother. Mutual consent is of the 134 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. All Rights Reserved.The Muslim wedding or the Nikaah Muslim wedding or Nikah rituals extends up to three days. The coin is tied on the upper arm of the bride. 1. Ltd. The Manjha and mehendi ceremonies are when the bride is dressed in yellow. and then the Ijab-e-Qubul (formal proposal is made by the groom and accepted by the bride) takes place. . There is no special mahurat for the Nikaah. In different parts of the world. and turmeric paste is applied on her body. 2. The groom’s mother then visits the bride’s home with sweets.A Maulvi (priest) presides over this ceremony. He reads the Quran. The Nikaah . these rituals are performed in different ways and customs. Musicians play traditional music. Pre-wedding rituals Istikhara .In this ritual. Imam-Zamin .
After the meal. The bride’s father places his daughter’s hand in the hand of the groom. Then the Quran is placed between them and they look at each other for the first time through mirrors. . All Rights Reserved.greatest importance. Walimah .On the fourth day after the Nikaah. 3. Men and women sit separately for the marriage feast.This is the grand reception hosted by the groom’s parents. Ltd. the couple is made to sit together for the first time. The Nikaahnama is signed. Welcoming the bride. Their heads are covered by a dupatta. Post-wedding ceremonies Rukshat is when the bride leaves her home. 135 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. They recite prayers as instructed by the Maulvi. the bride visits her parents. The groom then seeks the blessings of all the older women. The Maulvi and the Walis (the two fathers) are the witnesses. This is the contract which contains the terms and conditions that both parties have to abide by. The mother of the groom holds a Quran over the bride’s head as she steps into her new home. This is a monetary arrangement made by the groom’s family for the bride. Chauthi . The Meher is given.
Mehendi – This is also held at the bride’s place and the female friends and relatives attend this ritual. Brahmbhoj – During the early hours of the wedding day. and very straightforward. and not at all lavish. Ltd. who founded the Arya Samaj. This is the process of purification before applying mehendi (henna) on the hands and the feet of the bride-to-be.The Arya Samaj Wedding This wedding is based on the teachings of Swami Dayanand Saraswati. The vows are taken during the Panigrahana ceremony. . 2. The Arya Samaj wedding is completely unpretentious. A paste of turmeric and sandalwood powder is applied on the body of the bride-to-be and then it is scrubbed clean. 1. Chudha and Nath – On the wedding day. 16 Brahmins are fed as it is a customary of the Arya Samaj and they consider it to be auspicious. This indicates that they should always stay together like the star which is always in the same position in the sky. The ceremony is Vedic (not religious). Pre-wedding rituals Ladies’ Sangeet – The female friends and relatives mostly attend this ritual at the bride’s house and sing wedding and folk songs. All Rights Reserved. An interesting ritual is the Dhruvnakshatra when the bride and groom look at the Polestar together. the maternal uncle of the bride gives her red ivory chudha and nath (big round nose rings) and helps her wear it on her hands and nose respectively. On the wedding day: 136 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
Hriday Sparsh. While the bride prays for the good health and healthy relationship. The bride gives the groom a pitcher of water he washes his feet. Thread ceremony and yagnya – In this ceremony the groom needs to wear a sacred thread and worships the Fire God. 137 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The bride and the groom exchange garlands. . This indicates that their marriage would be steady as a rock. Then she puts the mixture of honey. All Rights Reserved. Suryadarshan . Saptapadikriya .During this ritual the couple worships the Sun God. Kesh Mochan – The groom unties the hair of the bride gently and recites mantras promising her that he will be gentle and kind to her and never hurt her or let her go throughout the life. Shilarohan – In this ritual the brother of the bride conveys his blessings to the couple by placing her foot on a stone. This ritual indicates good health and nourishment for the family.During this ritual the end of the bride’s saree is tied with end of the groom’s shawl and they take seven steps which signify the seven important needs. curd and ghee onto the groom’s cupped palm and he scatters the mixture in all directions and has the remnants. Ltd. the groom promises to be respectful towards all women.The couple promises to be gentle and kind hearted towards each other by touching each other’s heart. Pratigya Mantra – The couple hold each other’s hand and take wedding vows after which they walk around the fire. Parikrama – During this ritual. the couple walks four times around the fire. Kanya Daan – The parents of the bride hands over their daughter to her new family and blesses them to be together always. hands and his face with it.
The Kashmiri wedding The first step is the matching of the teknis or horoscopes. It is held between one month and one year after the marriage and usually done by the sister-in-law of the bride. They meet in the temple.wedding rituals Reception – Reception is normally held at a wedding or a banquet hall. Once the commitment is made. Also. Taking off the Chudha – The Chudha which the bride wears on the wedding day is taken off in this ritual. The different kinds of marriage according to the region are explained below. the Vanna or engagement ceremony takes place. . The Pole star signifies consistency in relationship while the other two stars signify togetherness. and the date finalized. Ltd. This is done thrice. Vasisth and Arundhati. and exchange flowers. Sindoor Daan . The girl’s family hosts a grand feast. REGIONAL W EDDINGS India is a vast sub-continent and different places in India have their own specialty and distinctiveness. Dhruv Darshan -The couple views the Pole star or Dhruv tara as well as the two stars of the Great Bear constellation. All Rights Reserved. 3. This is essentially between the elders of both families. in both homes the eldest aunt prepares var 138 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Post.in this ritual the groom fills the parted hair of the bride with Vermillion or Sindoor.
and her trousseau. Ltd. and a pot of misri are sent to the boy’s house from the girl’s family. The homes of the bride and groom are decorated. All Rights Reserved. dates. . 1. sets up a mud and brick oven. Pre-wedding rituals Livun . fresh and dry fruit. Wanwun . The wedding mahurat is either in the morning or at night. the waza.This ritual is to be done a week before the wedding.(kheer) which is offered to the neighbors and relatives. She is then dressed using these. sugar and gota (a special mixture of nuts) is sent to the groom’s house by the bride’s family. 139 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The rituals of the traditional bath and mehendi take place. Two days before the wedding. On the wedding day The Diugun ceremony . especially the dijaru which is an ear ornament is given to the bride.This is the ritual where cleaning of the home is done.The bride and groom have their ceremonial bath in their respective homes. the groom’s family sends jewellery made of flowers and tinsel to the bride. Gifts including money. Two or three days before the wedding. This is followed by a puja. A traditional cook. 51 thaalis of sweets.This is like the sangeet where friends and neighbors join the family in music sessions. Jewellery. dry fruits. ghee. 2. Maanziraat . The family is expected to fast till all the wedding nuptials are over. The bride’s parents give their daughter clothes.
This is a gift of cosmetics. The bride is given her wedding clothes by her maternal uncle. followed by a kanshiran when a veil is held over the head of the bride and groom (this ceremony is in their own homes) and a mixture of water. The two fathers exchange nutmeg. During the visits to the bride’s home – the Satraat and Phirlath – the newly-weds are given clothes and gifts. a small mirror. There is a havan and puja. sindoor. Ltd. The bride is supposed to use these cosmetics for her makeup during the wedding. This is a 1 metre long and 21/2 metre wide cake decorated with nuts. . A pair of pigeons is released in celebration. All the wedding rituals are performed in front of the sacred fire and seven pheras are to be made by the bride and the groom. and then the bride changes into clothes that are given to her by the groom’s parents. The devgon ceremony is observed in both homes. The aunt feeds both of them. rice and flowers is sprinkled on them. a shawl and special paan wrapped in varq or silver/gold foil. Post-wedding ceremonies Vidaai – the bride is blessed by her parents and sent to the groom’s house. All Rights Reserved. the bride’s family sends roth khabar to the family of the groom. curd. 3. The baraat arrives at the bride’s home bringing the groom. On the Saturday or Tuesday after the wedding. The newly-weds are welcomed into the groom’s home by the groom’s eldest aunt. The groom’s family sends the sanzvaru to the bride. The bride and groom are then led to the mandap for the ceremony. 140 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. milk. A peacock feather is tied to the groom’s turban with a gold thread.
which is made of kesar. and has a carnival atmosphere! Bhagra the dance which most of the Punjabis love to do during the ceremony adds charm to the event. The other half is given to the groom to eat. irrespective of their age. The father of the bride-to-be applies the Tilak.The first ceremony is the Roka ceremony. During the Kwar Dhoti ceremony. 1. Wedding folk songs are sung to the accompaniment of dholaks. Ltd. . especially dry dates are given to the bride’s family. The announcement of the forthcoming wedding is made. fruits and dry fruits are exchanged. sweets. Mahendi . Chunni Chadana . and flower petals. A pundit performs a havan. The groom’s parents and close relatives attend this ceremony. 141 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. or dhols. Gifts.This is a time for music and dance in the homes of the groom and bride-to-be. Each member of the family. The relatives and friends of the bride-to-be bless the groom.The Chunni chadana ceremony is done at the bride’s home.The mehendi and Kwar Dhoti ceremony. Punjabis are very strict about their community and they tend to marry within their community.The Sagan ceremony is held either in the groom’s home or in a banquet hall. rice grains. A Punjabi wedding is full of fun. and a harmonium. The ritual involves the bride-to-be eating one half of a date. The groom’s sister or sister-in-law gives the bride-to-be a red sari. and give him sweets and gifts. dry fruits. This is the formal engagement ceremony. The Sangeet . All Rights Reserved. participates in this event. Pre-wedding rituals Roka .The Punjabi wedding The rituals of a Punjabi wedding are similar to a Sikh wedding. Sagan . Mehendi is taken to the house of the bride-to-be by the groom’s sister and brother-in-law. very vibrant. on the forehead of the groom.
The Ghori chadana .When the groom arrives at the bride’s house. and the bride-to-be is made to sit facing them. 142 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. he is welcomed with garlands and rose water is sprinkled on him and the other guests. On the wedding day The churha or bangles ceremony. and then the groom’s father and elders tie the sehrabandi on his head. . or gold-plated).A small ceremony is performed to ward off the evil eye. The Milni ceremony . All Rights Reserved.After the Vatna and ghara ghardoli ceremony. Ltd. A havan is performed by the pundit. He then gets on his mare ready to go to the home of the bride-to-be in a baraat or procession. The Sehrabandi . She then dons her wedding finery.The siblings of the bride-to-be go to the nearby temple and bring back holy water for the bride to bathe in. A puja is performed. Kalira (small traditional ornaments in beaten gold and silver. The maternal uncle and aunt then put red and ivory bangles on her wrists. Prasad (sweets offered to the gods during the havan) is given to everyone. and a red thread or mauli is tied on the bride’s wrist. Flower petals are showered on the bride-to-be. and sweets are given to the mare that is to carry the groom. and they are warmly welcomed.2. These bangles are first touched by all those who are present as a mark of their blessings. the bridegroom wears his wedding clothes. The maternal uncle of the bride-to-be gives her the clothes she is suppose to wear at the wedding ceremony. The ghara ghardoli ceremony . He also ties a pink turban that has been blessed by everyone present. A paste of turmeric powder and mustard oil is put on the bride-to-be by her friends and female relatives.Four earthen lamps are lit. are tied on the bangles. Vatna .
All Rights Reserved. The Sindhi Wedding The Sindhi wedding follows Vedic rites. Auspicious days for a Sindhi marriage are the Satyanarayan Chandsi or the day of the New Moon. followed by the sindoor ritual when the groom puts sacred vermilion on the parting in the bride’s hair. 143 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. the couple touches the feet of all the elders of both families and is blessed by them. 3.The bride leaves her home and goes with her husband to her new home. Pre-wedding rituals Kachchi misri – Misri (candy sugar) and coconut are given to the bride-to-be and the prospective groom. For the blessing. The kanyadaan and phere . 1. She then locates suitable matches for them. The kanyadaan is when the bride’s father gives his daughter’s hand to the groom.This is the most important part of the ceremony. Lastly.This is the exchange of garlands between the bride and the groom. Varmala . . A priest studies the horoscopes of the bride-to-be and the groom and fixes the wedding date. The bride has to cook something sweet at her in law’s place. Post-wedding Ceremonies The vidaai . he ties the mangalsutra around the bride’s neck. Parents of marriageable girls and eligible bachelors give a Guryanni (the lady match maker) the horoscopes of their children. Then there are the mangalpheras around the sacred fire. Ltd.
Berana satsang – 10 days before the wedding day this satsang is organized in the name of the Sindhi god Jhulelal. This also signifies the beginning of the wedding ceremonies.
Pakki misri – The formal engagement held one week before the wedding. There is an exchange of rings between the bride-to-be and the groom in the presence of family and close friends.
Mehendi ceremony is held at the residence of the bride and the groom. At this time traditional wedding songs are sung.
The Sangeet is usually held at the bride’s home. A lot of enjoyment including dancing and singing takes place on this occasion.
Saagri – On a particular evening, the groom’s married sisters and cousins come to the bride’s home with jewellery made from the jasmine/mogra flowers. They dress her in silk, and put the flower jewellery on her. Flower petals are showered on the bride. Later when the groom arrives, he is welcomed with garlands and there is a dinner party held.
Ghari puja – Is done in the homes of the bride-to-be and the groom. Santh – The night before the wedding, seven married ladies apply oil on the girl’s head. An earthen pot is kept in front of her and she is asked to break it at one go.
On the wedding day The Baraat arrives bringing the groom with great fanfare, music, singing and dancing. They are welcomed by the bride’s family.
Swagatam – At the entrance of the home, the bridegroom places his right foot on top of the bride’s foot. He then enters the house. The bride’s brother washes his sisters, and the groom’s feet with milk and water.
Hathialo – The bridegroom’s dupatta is tied to one end of the bride’s sari/dupatta. Their hands are tied together with the sacred thread. Prayers are then offered by both of them.
The main ceremony is conducted by a priest in front of the sacred fire. He reads verses from the Holy Books. The couple goes around the fire four times. The groom touches his forehead with the bride’s hand. Their heads are then held together signifying their union.
Kanyadaan – The bride’s parents give the hand of their daughter to the groom. Vidaai – The bride leaves for her new home.
Post-wedding ceremonies Reception. The datar ceremony – When the bride is welcomed to the groom’s home. The groom’s parents wash their new daughter-in-law’s feet. The bride sprinkles milk throughout the house. The groom’s parents then cover the bride’s head. An important custom is when the bride places a handful of salt in her husband’s hand. He has to give it back to her without spilling any of it. This is done three times. The bride performs the same ritual with other family members. This is to signify that just as salt blends with food to give it its taste, she too should blend with the family and be a part of their joys and sorrows. Chhanar or Dev uthana – The totemic deity is removed signifying that the whole wedding ceremony is finally completed.
Sataurah – The newly-weds visit the bride’s parental home for the first time. They are given gifts, and sweets by the bride’s parents.
The Gujarati wedding
Gujarati weddings are filled with symbolic rituals. These rituals act as a guide to instruct the couple to lead a happily married life. The Gujaratis have utter respect for their wives and handover the keys of the house to them after marriage. The wives are expected to take care of the home. Whereas the husbands take major decisions and wives follow them. 1. Pre-wedding rituals Sagaai – This is when the formal announcement of the marriage takes place. The ceremony is at the groom’s home. The bride’s family arrives with the Matli, which is a steel container filled with sweets and gifts for the groom and his family. Mandap mahurat – A few days before the wedding, a Ganesh puja is performed in both the homes. Griha Shanthi – This is a rituals performed for maintaining peace and tranquility in the family. Pithi – This is the ceremony in which turmeric paste is applied on the bride and groom. Mehendi – The bride’s hands and legs are covered with exquisite designs. During this ritual, traditional folk songs are sung. Garba – The night before the wedding both families come together to perform the garba.
On the wedding day
Hasta milap – The groom’s dupatta is tied to the bride’s sari. The bride and groom are separated by a curtain called the antarpaat. Madhuparka – The groom’s feet are washed. There are four pheras. Shubh ashirwad – After all the rituals are over. Kanyadaan – The bride’s father washes the groom’s feet and gives him the hand of his daughter. When the priest starts the ceremony. Post-wedding ceremonies 147 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. All Rights Reserved. Mangalpheras – As the priest chants the mantras. She does an aarti to greet the groom. Ltd. The groom has to recite certain mantras as well. Saptapadi – The groom helps the bride touch seven betel nuts with her right toe while they both recite the seven vows of commitment. He is given a drink of milk and honey. Saubhagyavati bhava – Seven married women from the bride’s family whisper good wishes and blessings in the right ear of the bride. Ponkvu – The groom arrives at the bride’s house and is welcomed by the bride’s mother. the antarpaat is lowered and the couple exchange garlands. Kanya agaman – The bride is brought to the mandap by the maternal uncle. Rose petals and rice are showered on them by those witnessing the marriage. Jaimala – The bride and groom exchange garlands. the couple seeks blessings from all senior members of the family as well as friends present. the couple walks around the sacred fire. . 3. Gujarati weddings are generally held at night.
Reception. . spilling some rice. Various pujas take place in the two homes. Haldi ceremony. The Maharashtrian wedding Maharashtrian wedding takes place according to the muhurat patra which is set up to maintain and measure the time before the actual moment scheduled for the marriage. goddess of wealth and good fortune). The brides usually adorn green or yellow coloured saree and a half moon is designed on her forehead as a sign of good luck. Vidaai – The bride leaves her home. 1. On the wedding day 148 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. The groom’s parents give the bride a sari signifying acceptance of her. 2. The bride worships Goddess Parvati in the entrance until she is asked by the priest to come onto the dais. Ltd. All Rights Reserved. Pre-wedding rituals Shakar puda – Exchange of sugar between the families. At the entrance there is a vessel filled with rice. The bride is to gently knock the vessel with her right foot. is welcomed with an aarti before she steps inside the house. Ghar ni Laxmi – The bride (Laxmi.
. Changing of the bride’s name. 149 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. And according to the Tamil Calendar the dates from July 15th to August 15th (Aashad). The Antarpaat is placed between the bride and groom. Kanyadaan and tying of the mangalsutra is then executed. the antarpaat is removed. The priest chants the wedding mantras. 3. The seemaan puja is performed when the groom arrives at the bride’s home. Tond dhune and Vyahi Bhet. All Rights Reserved. Gifts are exchanged between the two parents on behalf of the newly-weds. September 15th to October 15th (Bhadrapad) and December 15th to January 15th (Shunya) are considered ill-fated. Ltd. Consequently weddings are not held in during those months. Grihapravesh of the bride in her new home. Her new name is traced on a plate of rice. The Tamil wedding The Tamilian weddings are quite simple though they have a fairly large community. Varaat or vidaai. The Laxminarayan puja is performed for the bride and groom. Post-wedding ceremonies: Reception. The Tamil calendar is consulted before fixing the date of marriage. and the bride and groom exchange garlands and perform the mangalpheras. The Tamilian brides usually wear a bright coloured saree adorned with flowers in the hair. The groom’s feet are washed by the bride’s parents and he is welcomed into the home with gifts.
1. All Rights Reserved. The Nicchiyadharatham is when the bride’s parents do a Ganesh puja. Pre-wedding rituals The Lagna Pathirigai is read by the priest. The Naandi ceremony is performed to honour the ancestors. . This is to show that while life has its ups and downs. Saptapadi – The bride and groom go around the fire seven times. Tying of the mangalsutra. On the wedding day Mangal snanam and Kashi Yatra – The bride and groom are given ceremonial baths at their respective homes. At this time he also announces the details of the wedding. Then the groom says that he is going to Kashi and is not interested in setting up a home. 2. The families fast the day before the wedding. Kanyadaan. they are together through it all. Muhurtam – Prayers are offered by the two families the day before the wedding. The bride’s father has to stop the groom and bring him to his home where he is welcomed by the family of the bride. Ltd. He is welcomed warmly and the bride’s brother puts a tilak on the groom’s forehead. Exchange of garlands and swing ceremony – Garlands are exchanged by the bride and groom and they are made to sit on a swing while ceremonies are performed around them. Prayers are chanted through the day. The groom comes to the wedding venue a day before the wedding day. 150 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. and ask for their blessings.
Reception. All Rights Reserved. Post-wedding ceremonies Exchange of gifts.3. In other marriages that take place in South India. 1. Huge number of customs is followed during a Bengali wedding. . they consider it to be sacred and it is mostly blown during any holy or religious ceremonies. Grihapravesham – When the bride enters the house of the groom. the main customs remain: The muhurtam The Kanyadaan The tying of the mangalsutra Grihapravesham Reception Rituals and ceremonies that are dictated by family tradition are included. Ltd. They are considered as the intellectual community of India. It is also blown to attract the attention of the guests towards the ceremony. The Bengali wedding The Bengali community has the essence of warmth and gratitude within themselves. The unique feature of the Bengali wedding is the blowing of conch shells. Pre-wedding rituals 151 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt.
Adan Pradan – This is when the lineage of the bride and groom are traced back seven generations by the priest. The Patri-patra confirms the alliance. The Vridhi puja to honour the ancestors. The ceremonial bath. Water is brought from a nearby temple for this bath. Gifts are exchanged between the two families during the gae halud tattva and the adhibas tattva.
On the wedding day Haldi and ceremonial bath - Conch shell bangles are dipped in turmeric water and put on the bride’s arm, and then the bride is dressed in all her bridal finery. The groom is welcomed with the blowing of conch shells and ululation. The bride is carried into the mandap, and after a short ceremony when she walks around the groom seven times, there is the shubho dhrishti when they see each other for the first time. The exchange of garlands between the bride and the groom. This is done 3 times to the chanting of the mantras. The Saat paak and sampradhan ceremonies are conducted when the kanyadaan is done and the bride walks around the groom seven times.
Post-wedding ceremonies Vidaai.
Bou baran and Basar ghar is when the bride steps into her new home. At the threshold she has to dip her feet in a paste of red lac dye and milk, and as she steps in the imprint of her feet are made on the floor of her new home. The groom’s sister then takes her in. She is given red and ivory bangles, and the loha(iron) or a steel bangle.
Bashi baye is when the groom puts the sacred vermilion in the bride’s hair parting. Prayers are offered to the Sun god.
Boubhaat – A feast is set out for the family, relatives and guests. The bride makes a rice preparation which is served at this time.
Dira gaman is when the newlyweds visit the bride’s parental home for the first time after the wedding.
Oriya and Assamese weddings share common features with the Bengali wedding. Again, family traditions and local culture add to the colour and festivities.
It is good to remember too that though the actual wedding ceremony is dictated by religious affiliation, they also have the local traditional flavor.
Further: The North Indian wedding – This is the most elaborate form of wedding which stretches along many days. There is a lot of fun and gaiety that goes on throughout. These weddings are very ostentatious.
The South Indian wedding – These weddings have a lot of traditional cultural programs during the days preceding the wedding. The bridegroom is welcomed in the local temple and then taken to the kalyana mandapam. One interesting custom is when the feet of the bride and groom are washed with milk and dried with silk cloth by the father of the bride.
The East Indian wedding – This includes Bengal, Orissa and the Northeastern states. The common ceremony is the kanyadaan. Other wedding rituals are specific to the state. The Assamese ceremonies are not very elaborate, but here the traditional wedding meal is held before the actual wedding ritual.
The West Indian wedding – Here we are talking about Maharashtra, Gujarat and Rajasthan. Maharashtrian weddings are scheduled in the morning or late evening. After the wedding, there is usually a Laxmi Narayan puja that is held.
WEDDING V OWS According to Hindu tradition
The seven vows of marriage symbolize the seven promises made by the bride and groom. The ceremony is performed in the presence of the sacred fire or havan. The place where the havan is done is beautifully decorated too. All weddings in the Hindu tradition have the chanting of Vedic mantras.
They also pray to be blessed with healthy. . understanding and faith. the groom leads the first four and the bride leads the next three. But after the pheras. she sits on the left side. The groom gives the bride the Meher or compulsory gift. 2 nd st – That they would develop their physical. 6 – That they will have self-control of the body. honest and brave children. four – That they will acquire knowledge. 5 – That they will be increase their family and be responsible for their children. 155 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. 3 – That they will earn and increase their wealth by righteous means. respect.That they would pride a prosperous living for the household/family. Of the seven pheras. the bride sits on the right side of the groom. mental and spiritual powers in order to live a healthy lifestyle. The bride and the groom have to give their consent willingly. and avoid all the hindrances to a healthy family life. mind and soul and that they will have a long marriage. seven – That they would be true and loyal to each other and remain companions and best of friends for their lifetime. The meaning of the vows taken with each of the seven pheras are: 1 . th th th th rd According to the Muslim tradition The Maulvi reads certain texts from the Quran. happiness and harmony by mutual love. Before taking the vows. All Rights Reserved.
According to the Christian tradition When the rings are exchanged. The couple signs the Nikaahnama which is a legal marriage document. 156 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. and thereto I pledge you my love and faithfulness. Arrangements have to be made separately for male and female guests. for better or for worse. these vows are repeated by the groom and bride: I. After this they are made to sit together. ______. They repeat certain prayers after the Maulvi. in sickness and in health. and with all my worldly goods I thee endow: In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. to love and to cherish. All Rights Reserved. In case the couple is from two different countries. to have and to hold from this day onwards. take you. for richer or for poorer. with my body I thee worship. ________. . As the groom then places the ring on the bride’s ring finger. he says the following oath: ‘With this ring I thee wed. legal and immigration issues need to be dealt with before the wedding. Amen’. to be my wedded (wife/husband). ‘til death do us part: according to God’s holy ordinance. Certain points have to be kept in mind in a Muslim wedding: The prenuptial agreement and conditions in the marriage contract have to be discussed and agreed to before the wedding.
Inspirational poems may be used. the bride and groom decide on special vows that they create. Ltd. Very often. to sift through all the customs. All Rights Reserved. It is important. it has to have meaning for the bride and groom. 157 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. However. therefore. instead of using the traditional vows. In these cases. Young Indians. No matter what the tradition is. In some Christian weddings. relatives may come up with all kinds of demands. . let no man put asunder’. groom and the elders of both families sit down with the priest and work out a ceremony that everyone is comfortable with. the ring is placed on the finger of the bride by the priest as a symbol of the bond between the bride and Christ. there are special customs belonging to the individual families. ceremonies and rituals and plan something which everyone agrees to. Most importantly. even though they may choose their partners. The priest then exhorts the congregation with the words: ‘Whom God has joined together. some form of vows is taken publicly in the presence of witnesses. the families may want to have some sort of ceremony and a reception. Very often. since two families are involved. the bride. increasingly. Further. are not allowing themselves to be stopped by considerations of caste and creed.
and love. lightheartedness. we will create abundance and joy for each other.” Deepak Chopra.“If we share with caring. All Rights Reserved. Indian spiritual guru. 158 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. Ltd. And then this moment will have been worthwhile. .
159 Step By Step Wedding Planning Guide| Copyright 2010 Red Hot Web Gems India Pvt. . Ltd. All Rights Reserved.