Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Our big fat Indo-Canadian-Tamil-Telugu-Whindian wedding!!!

(Our wedding portrait)

2 years ago today we were married in a beautiful ceremony in my mother's front yard. We invited about 65 people, but it turned into over 100 people because everyone wanted to come celebrate with us! It was surreal - everyone from different stages of my life, all in one room...some even knew me before birth! All the people who attended our wedding were our biggest supporters and we felt so much love that day. One of our guests remarked, "This wedding is beyond multicultural...it's intergalactic!!!"

It was one of the best days of my life. After so many years of being together, it was a beautiful way to celebrate our love.

It was important to me to have it at my childhood home because I was most comfortable there, and it was more personal for our guests. My mum went all out decorating the place - with saree fabric tented over the walls; garlands of jasmine, marigolds, and roses that were shipped in from India - it was just divine.

We decided to do a non-religious ceremony that honored both of our cultures with a Celebrant to officiate the wedding. Each of the traditions were very meaningful and romantic.

We were presented to the altar ("mandap") by both our parents, lead by our mothers. Right before the ceremony started, church bells rang in the distance, all of a sudden! Then my favorite auntie (auntie #1) gave the rings to the Celebrant. During the ceremony, the rings were passed around and blessed by all our guests.  The celebrant read a speech which was personalized from our love story - about what we love about each other, how we met and fell in love, and all our hopes for the future. The ceremony was sealed with a kiss, in Western tradition; and my MIL sang a bhajan to close the ceremony. After it was over, the Celebrant took us to a private room to have a few minutes away from the crowd. After that, we greeted our guests and dined together. For the food, we served a buffet-style of Indian, Thai, and West Coast Canadian cuisine for our multi-cultural guests. We did a traditional Western "bouquet throwing", cake cutting, first dance, and father/daughter dance. Then we all danced to Soultown music & Indian music until midnight!

(The altar)


(The flowers)

(Guest seating)

(Entrance)

(Ganesh at the entrance way)

(The pool in the backyard)

(Our wedding rings which were blessed by each of the guests)

(My bridal mehndi)

(During the ceremony)

(Our parents)

(Exchanging rings in the Western tradition)

(My MIL sang a Bhajan while we signed the marriage certificate)

(Our dads signed the marriage certificate as our witnesses)

(Our Indian cousins from the U.S.)

(Guests dining under tented saree fabric)

(Throwing the bouquet - my friend caught it!)

(cake cutting)

(Father/daughter dance - "In My Life", by The Beatles)

(First dance together as a married couple - "Khuda Jaane")

(My MIL dancing the night away)


Details:

Our dresses/jewelry/accessories: Kalaniketan Wedding Mall in Hyderabad.
Wedding rings: GRT jewelers in Hyderabad.
Mehndi: 604 Mehndi by Fahath.
The Flowers: Hilary Miles.
Garland flowers: Fancy Florist (ordered online).
The food: The Lazy Gourmet.
Cake: Sweet Naturally.
Officiant: Modern Celebrant, Michele Davidson.
Music/DJ: Solomon Riby-Williams.
Party Favors: Sandalwood fans from Beaucoup (ordered online).
Photographers: My dad and my cousins!


Click HERE to read what our Celebrant said about our wedding ceremony.


Click HERE to read my best marriage advice.
Click HERE to read my advice for other intercultural couples.

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28 comments

  1. Oh your wedding was gorgeous... Look at all the colours!! You two look perfect, and your saree is very beautiful!

    Im surprised your husband was okay with you wearing a white saree; my boyfriend is probably more Canadianized than I am but he has already stated he would not be okay with me wearing white to the ceremony itself (reception is fine), because it is a funeral colour. Yours is very beautiful though!

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    1. Thanks so much! Yea, he didn't seem to mind too much, and even got the matching white suit. He is into fashion, A LOT! ;)

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    2. My husband (north Indian) also did not mind when I wore a white saree for our wedding. He is big on fashion as well- his only stipulation was no pink!

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  2. The setting is just amazing... sooooo beautiful! And both of you look stunning. Love all of it! :-) What a perfect celebration!

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    1. Thanks Sharell! It was wonderful, just totally magical! I'll never forget it :)

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  3. So lovely I just love wedding pics and your were so unique. You look amazing too :)

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    1. Thank you! Yes - unique - that is the word! We just had all the decorations we liked and luckily they all worked together!

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  4. Lovely! the decorations are so beautiful!

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    1. Thanks so much! We wanted to to be really colorful & joyous :)

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  5. The pictures looks so colorful and pretty! :')

    Makes me really happy for you.

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  6. Lovely images... captured the magical day perfectly!

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    1. Thanks so much!
      We didn't have a photographer, we just asked my dad and cousins to photograph, but it turned out great!

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  7. That indeed was one multicultural wedding I have heard of. Congratulations to both of you and may you share the love for the rest of your life. :-)

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    1. Thanks so much! Yes, we had a lot of flava! ;)

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  8. Nice wedding pics!

    Also, take a look at this other wedding:
    (Liz and Suraj)
    http://offbeatbride.com/2011/09/pennsylvania-indian-fusion-wedding


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  9. You look absolutely stunning in your sari! My husband and I had a Jewish/Western wedding here in California and a big wedding reception in his home city of Bangalore three weeks later. I had a red sari for our rehearsal dinner/party here and a beautiful turquoise and green sari for the reception in India. Have you mastered the art of putting the sari on yourself yet?

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  10. I tried posting earlier but I am not sure if it went through. Anyway - you looked absolutely gorgeous in your saris! Your wedding colors were beautiful too. My Indian husband and I had a Jewish/Western wedding here in California and a wedding reception in his home city of Bangalore. I wore a beautiful red sari for the rehearsal dinner/party and a gorgeous turquoise and green sari for the Indian reception. Have you mastered the art of putting the sari on yourself? I have only worn it a handful of times and require assistance and lots of safety pins.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Trish!
      Yes, it took me about 7 years! But I still have a hard time with silk, chiffon is so much easier with the folds. Yet as you know, South Indians prefer their SILK sarees!!! :D
      Beautiful! California and Bangalore, how wonderful!!!

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  11. I just want to say that I am loving your blog posts. I have been scouring the internet for the past couple of months looking for anyone who could give advice on coming into an Indian family. I finally found you by searching to see if I should be giving gifts to my future MIL. She keeps giving me things and I needed to know if I should reciprocate or if it is frowned upon. :)

    I also search endlessly for advice on how people pulled off a multicultural wedding. I find a lot of examples where they have two wedding ceremonies. It is still hard to find one who has blended it all together into one. I will definitely be telling him about your blog and the way you pulled off your ceremonies!

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    Replies
    1. Awwwww thank you! Yes, it CAN be done! And it is more fun to merge both cultures :)
      I give gifts to my MIL all the time, she loves the attention ;)

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  12. :) Wow.. You guys look beautiful and amazing.
    Loved your kalaniketan saree.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you! It was a day to remember :)
      Can't wait to get more outfits at Kalanikethan

      Delete

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