Arriving in style- Baraat

The traditional Indian wedding establishes a bond between two families and their cultures, apart from creating a very special relationship between the couple, who tie the nuptial knot .One of the important and fun ceremonies, is the arrival of the groom on the day of the wedding, at the venue. The groom’s family members, relatives and friends accompany him to the wedding venue, in a marriage procession called ‘baraat’. Groom’s friends and relatives are called the ‘baraati’. The wedding baraat is held with high esteem and the baratis are pampered by the bride’s family, when they arrive at the wedding venue.
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You could go traditional and have your groom arrive by decorated horse. Or, if your groom has more modern indian wedding style, he could travel in a more extravagant way. I have seen helicopters, boats, elephants, and luxury cars. The sky is the limit, so play around with some ideas!

Here are some tips and ideas on how to spice up your Baraat and make it very memorable for your guests to remember. There is a lot more you can add to your Baraat apart from the horse and band to make it truly unique.

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The Baraat is a fun procession where guests are dancing and rejoicing the occasion. As a host it is a great idea to spice up the mood by extending some hospitality and making it very memorable for guests. It is now a trend at Indian weddings to serve refreshments such as soft beverages, tender coconut and mineral water along with cold towels during the Baraat – especially if it is a day time procession.

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The bridal families are getting into the minutest detail like crafting a special menu of bite sized snacks which can be served during the procession.
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Safas for the male guests are part of most Indian weddings. The safas are very bright and add colour to the procession. For a day time Baraat you can arrange for colourful cloth umbrellas for female guests. These are made of Indian fabric and are available in vibrant colours. These could even act as souvenirs post the procession. A fresh petal shower is also a good way to add colour to the Baraat and make it livelier. A gola or an ice-cream cart along with the procession would be a good idea for summer weddings.

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For an evening baraat a display of fireworks and crystal chandeliers are a must. Arranging for a vanity van along with baraat for guests who may want to touch up or refresh before entering the venue would be a great finishing touch!

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Traditionally, and still most commonly, the Groom’s entrance is on an elaborately decorated white horse. Recently, Grooms are opting for different entrance options to really impress their guests. Your only limitations are your imagination (and maybe the rules of your venue!),
• Tampa Trolley Cars
• Yacht or speed boat arrivals
• Jet-skis
• Segways
• Helicopters
• Elephants
• Convertibles

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Video Wednesday- The Wedding Filmer !

The Wedding Filmer” has been capturing wedding memories since 2010. As per their facebook page “Life is not in breaths you take. It’s in the moments that take your breath away.” They tell us that their films have inspired people to believe in the institution of marriage. And, they have been rising in popularity consistently with over 85,000 likes on facebook. The Wedding Filmer team consists of 6 passionate fellas: Ankit, Zara, Sufi, Vishal, Ashima and Hojo. Let’s read their story.

Call him a romantic or just someone who makes beautiful memories. Watching his marriage videos will make you skip a beat. Vishal Punjabi, who studied film making in England, moved to Africa in 2008 to create beautiful memories with real stories and people .“We don’t make people act or follow a script. Nothing is planned in any form, which is why it’s important we shoot with people who open up to us. You see, these films are not just wedding films. What if you could see your great grandmother’s love story today? And what if it was a beautifully told story?” asks Punjabi, 33.

Surprisingly, the first wedding he filmed was of his own in 2010 which went viral with more that 8,000 likes on YouTube.He has shot 13 weddings so far, from Geri Gets Married to Happiness, all big hits online. While the latter was shot in Sultanpur Dabas, a small village near Delhi, his latest project is based on a double wedding, ‘‘The first I’ve ever witnessed. One sister fell in love, the other had it fixed by parents. Both the sisters are beautiful but one suffered an accident that burned her entire face and body,’’ says Punjabi.
Watch it here
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=84Zbrj3DZNw&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3D84Zbrj3DZNw

Besides weddings, Punjabi has also worked with Shahrukh Khan’s Red Chillies Entertainment for 10 years on commercials like ICICI Bank, Wipro, ITC, Airtel and Hyundai. He has been a part of the visual effects team in movies like Ashoka, Main Hoon Na and Don. If you’ve seen Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani and thought to yourself what a beautiful wedding well it was shot by this man itself. I must say I am a big fan of their work. They make movies which are alot more interactive, you feel like a part of the wedding even though you didn’t attend it or don’t know the bride or groom?

Punjabi charges approximately 5 lakhs a wedding, yes I know that’s alot compared to the usual videographer but again if you want a blockbuster wedding movie you’ve got add that extra bit of dough. SOOOO- did you love it or did you love it?! These are just a few examples of the work they do- you can check out their Facebook page to see the other videos. I’d strongly suggest if you’re getting married- hire these guys asap! I have a feeling they will be pretty booked up in no time!

To have a destination wedding or not ? Part 2- The Cons

Everyone sees a destination wedding as a romantic and unconventional twist to the traditional wedding affair. Well, it will certainly give a twist to your wedding no doubt, and add an extra element of a beautiful, scenic background to your nuptials. But, there are certain things you need to keep in mind before finalising on a destination wedding. This trend may not be as appealing as it is told to be. Here are a few cons related to a destination wedding that you should know about.

Rules out a big fat wedding gathering
Well, destination wedding is definitely not for those who wish all their near and dear ones to be around them. If you are the one who loves big fat gatherings, well then destination wedding may not be your cup of tea. Many of your friends, relatives or acquaintances may not be on board to shower you with congratulations which may stir up a lot of emotions. So, you may end up regretting not having everybody for the merrymaking.

Don’t be too budget happy
Remember a scene from Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani where Kalki shouts on her best friend (played by Aditya Roy Kapur) for his enormous bar and gambling tab/bill that her fiancé would have to pay for. Yes, this is a con of destination wedding. At a local wedding, there will be just few outstation guests, whereas at a destination wedding everyone, including you, is an outstation guest. The etiquettes of a destination wedding say that the couple pay for their guests’ accommodation, local travelling and room tabs; while invitees have to pay for their travel to and from the destination. Well, you never know how much those room tabs and sightseeing may end up pinching on your wedding budget.

Endless planning and checklists
Moving to a new place for your wedding is not that easy. If it is an unexplored region then it can mean a lot of unpleasant surprises and complications. Finalising your itinerary, advance bookings, juggling with the details of climate, culture (especially if it is overseas), florists, etc. are all that you might have to deal with. Planning and preparations can turn out to be far more maddening. There are chances your objective of marrying innovative turns helter-skelter.

Distance can lead to some disappointments
Your best friend has an important presentation in the office on the very morning of your wedding day… Well, your destination wedding might become difficult for him/her to be a part of. Well, not only that even those relatives who have certain health issues or problems, like your grandparents may not be able to travel for a destination wedding. Apart from this, flights getting missed, last minute reservation hassles, etc. are possibilities that you cannot rule out.

Ready for a family honeymoon
Well, if you were planning to extend your wedding destination as your honeymoon destination as well then don’t get too happy as of yet. You may land in an awkward situation when you have to continue hosting the remaining guests. It is embarrassing to ask the guests to pack up once the wedding is over. They may have their own plans to overstay out of the expense of attending the wedding. There are chances that while connecting romantically with your spouse you are bumping into your guests.

What you can do, instead!
Well, for all those couples who want a unique wedding experience sans the pros and cons of a destination wedding can choose to add a personal touch to their celebrations with the help of a theme. A theme allows you to add interesting and appealing elements to your wedding. Want your wedding to be filled with soft breeze and setting sun then opt for an outdoor wedding at a beautiful garden or pool side or a farmhouse in your city. If you cannot travel to your desired location, you can design the entire setup of the location using the themes like beaches, waterfall and more.

So, it is not far-fetched for those who cannot travel overseas to marry. You can choose any locale to make it into a good site for wedding by personalising it with a theme. But, if you still want to opt for a destination wedding to celebrate your union then do consider its pros and cons before finalising on it.

To have a destination wedding or not ? Part 1- The Pros

7 Best Reasons to Have a Destination Wedding

Marriage trends have taken a quantum leap in the past few years. Gone are the days when they were confined to halls, lawns and banquets. It is time to think beyond the routine venues to celebrate this once-in-a-lifetime event. Though still in its nascent stage, the concept of destination wedding is fast gaining ground in India and the UAE.

Whether it is a desire to keep away the gossiping aunts, or an appetite for ‘something different’, destination weddings are becoming a romantic trend these days. Versatility in the venue and decor ideas is what’s attracting to-be-brides and grooms towards it. Take a look at some of the reasons why you should think about a destination wedding to celebrate your union.
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Trendy and romantic affair
Destination wedding is fast looming up on the youngsters who want their ceremony to be offbeat and fashionable. Imagine your wedding to be amidst the surf, sand and sea where you can experience a romantic and ultimate marital bliss. From a relaxed wedding at a Goan beach to a royal one in a Rajasthan palace; doing it different is the mantra of the day. Places like Jodhpur, Goa or remote hillside off the Mumbai-Pune expressway can make for extra-special venues. Some also prefer to travel to foreign tourist hubs like Mauritius, Bangkok and so on.

Quality time with guests
When it comes to travelling to a faraway place or even a different city, the mounting guest list gets slashed. Chances of the invitation getting overlooked get high due to travelling and other costs. It cuts down the list to the closed ones. The huge maddening crowd is not there to impose their views upon you. This way you get to spend more time with the guests who have travelled all the way to be a part of your destination wedding.

Away from unwanted people
Were you looking for a reason to not invite the nosy neighbours, the meddling distinct cousins, and the colleagues or boss to your wedding? Well, a destination wedding is your answer to it. A lot of those nosy guests who often pinpoint every error and who sulk at every expense get slashed from your guest list.
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Limiting the budget
To your surprise, this unconventional concept of marriage is quite affordable and reasonably priced. Your pockets can easily bear the expenses as the wedding is mostly attended by your closed ones which means lesser people. During off seasons, it becomes easier on the budget. Goa can be chosen as a budget destination wedding venue, but you will have to book well in advance. Other popular places which you can get in low-budget are Ooty and Manali. Though they sound run-of-the-mill, they can turn out great with your personal touch and right preparations.

Attractive deals and packages
These days there are many resorts and hotels which offer quite exciting discounts and deals for people to host a wedding at their premise. Many offer complementary services, hassle free packages and simpler procedures to conduct a wedding. Along with helping you out with the wedding ceremonies and preparations, they will also make exciting activity packages for your guests. They can help you to organise interesting activities and sightseeing for your guests. This would allow your guests to enjoy complete local flavour of the destination.
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A status symbol
Today most of the couples are choosing an option of destination wedding option over the typical ones. Even most well-heeled Indians are going by this concept as destination weddings are seen as a status symbol as well. A splendid wedding thrown at a fancy destination earns you name and fame amongst your guests, and makes your wedding a well-remembered affair for the long time to come.
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Honeymoon starts right away
Most of the couples choose to start the nuptial journey and the honeymoon from the very venue they have already selected. Wishing to kick off your happily-ever-after as soon as possible, you can book a honeymoon even before the wedding bells ring. This way you can spend a honeymoon on a budget without having to change the place.

So, are you ready to shortlist an exciting destination for your wedding? Do let us know where you would like to tie your knot by leaving your comments below and stay tuned for Part 2 detailing the Cons of a destination wedding !

Kundan vs Polki

Kundan vs Polki

Indian jewellery is renowned all over the world for its grandeur and artistic designs. There are many different works or forms of jewellery in India of which Kundan and Polki seem to be timeless because of their craze among people, especially brides.
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Kundan and Polki jewellery that look very similar when one tries to look at images using Google. However they differ alot in terms of price and content I myself only realised this when I purchased a polki set for my soon to be mum in law.
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Kundan
Kundan jewellery is perhaps the oldest form of gold jewellery made in India. Kundan jewellery reached its pinnacle during the times of Mughal Emperors.This jewellery remains as timeless as ever, and its craze among brides has to be seen to be believed. Kundan is basically a method to set gemstones in gold jewellery. For this, the specialist inserts make use of a gold foil that is inserted in between the gems and the mount over which gems get studded. Specialists who make Kundan jewellery are called Kundan Saaz.
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Polki
Polki is a type of gold jewellery that makes use of uncut diamonds. The special feature of this jewellery lies in the fact that there is gold foil at the back that has been painted to place the diamonds in between. With uncut diamond reflecting light, Polki jewellery looks irresistible for most women. With celebrities like Ashwarya Rai and Shilpa Shetty wearing Polki jewellery in recent times, the popularity of this jewellery has received a tremendous boost. . Being comparatively less expensive than diamonds, Polki enthuses women to opt for large, chunky pieces. In fact, it is a popular option for those who have limited budget, yet want a substantial addition to their jewellery collection.
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There is a whole range of Polki jewellery out there in the market and the price of a set can vary from Rs.3 lakh to Rs.3 crore, depending upon the quality and design. The cost of a polki set often goes up mainly because of the use of pure gold and precious stones.”
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What is the difference between Kundan and Polki?
• Polki jewellery is more expensive than Kundan jewellery.
• Polki makes use of uncut diamonds whereas Kundan makes use of glass imitations.
• Polki is an option for those who want the splendor of diamonds but cannot afford pure diamond jewellery.
• While the word Polki was initially used for uncut diamonds, it gradually came to be used for Kundan jewellery, whereas Kundan started to be applied to gold jewellery made with glass imitations.
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Well the good part about this is you could opt for a cheaper Kundan set that actually looks chunky if you don’t want to spend alot on the wedding jewellery. Jewellery in the Indian household has always looked onto as an investment so depending upon your budget you could opt for either of the two.

Anju & Namit

Their Story- We had a love marriage. We met in Glasgow, United Kingdom during our Post Graduation. Namit and I became good friends within weeks of meeting each other. He was really easy to talk to and super fun to be with. We would talk for hours in a day. At a time when I most needed a friend, he was there by my side. And then somewhere down the lane, we realized there was something more to the friendship. One of our friends acted as a cupid and finally he asked me out on March 5, 2011; we had our roka in a year and got married after 2 years !

Wedding Tales-It was a lot of different cultures to deal with 😉 Ever since I was a kid I wanted a North Indian wedding, with loads and loads of dancing (I blame Karan Johar and Yash Chopra movies for that 😉 ). My parents were super chilled out and said that I could have a Punjabi wedding if that’s what I really want. So we had a Punjabi wedding and a Kerala style reception.
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Trousseau Tales- For my Sagan & Ring Ceremony I wore a red and golden Dolly J lehenga. Namit’s mom and sister picked it up for me, from AZA for roughly under 2 Lakhs (though we got a 50% discount on it). For my Mehendi & Sangeet, I picked up a pinkish-peach Varun & Nidhika floor length anarkali, from AZA for around 40-50K . For the wedding, I wore a Rimple & Harpreet Narula lehenga, also from AZA.
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I wore a magenta kancheepuram saree for my reception in Kerala, which I got from Jayalakshmi Silks, Kochi.

I had come down from Dubai for a week to do my shopping in Delhi. It was day 2 of lehenga hunting and I was already frustrated since I had so less time on hand. After visiting a lot of shops, we ended up in AZA The minute I saw this lehenga I knew I had found my wedding lehenga.. Red in color, with loads of gheras, antique work… It was exactly what I had in mind 😀
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Fun times?
The most fun function was the sangeet. I loved seeing all my friends and family perform. The best performance was that of my mom and dad’s, along with my uncles and aunts. They performed on a fusion of old songs with the grand finale of ‘Oppa Gangnam style’ 😀 I performed a duet with my sister… and a musical with my cousins….the musical was based on our love story. Namit and I did a couple dance on ‘Pehla Nasha’, complete with loads and loads of lifts J
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WHo did your makeup and who shot these beautiful pictures?
My makeup for Sagan & Sangeet was done in Vidya Tikari Studios at Lajpat Nagar..The makeup artists were fantastic.. I did not want very heavy make up for any of the functions. And they did a fantastic job in keeping the makeup light and natural.
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My wedding makeup was done by Shalini Singh. She did an amazing job and she was super easy to work with. I did not want to be caked up with heavy makeup…and Shalini really got what I wanted and did a fantastic job..

The photographer we hired was from Dipak Studios. They did an amazing job in capturing all the candid moments.

The reception in Kerala was covered by SL Anand. He was really fun to work with; always coming up with innovative and fun shots. The makeup in Kerala was done by La Femme Salon, Thrissur. I wanted my look to be completely traditional, with jasmine flowers on my head and long braided hair. The makeup artists were really good and efficient and my makeup was done in an hour’s time !

Sonika & Sundeep

Their Story- Arranged!! We don’t have a romantic story as such, I had been talking to a lot of frogs till my parents found my Prince. Its funny how it happens, you think its going to be a fairy tale, the way its portrayed in movies, But its simple, like my mom always said you will just know that he’s the one. There is no better way to describe it then the truth….We might not have the most romantic story, we might not have seen each other across the room and fallen in love with each other at first sight, he might not have proclaimed his love to me in front of a million people. I may not be a princess stuck in a tower, and he may not have come on his white horse to rescue me…..Whatever it was, all I knew was that this was Right.
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Trousseau tales- Wedding shopping was the most fun element I got most of my outfits from Mumbai. I’ve always wanted a Manish Malhotra Lehenga for my wedding so that was decided from day 1. I did my fair share of research prior to visiting Mumbai so I was well aware of the latest trends in Bridal lehenga’s.
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I got my wedding lehenga from Sabyasachi and a champagne colour gown for the reception from Anjalee Arjun Kapoor. For my ring ceremony I had my heart set on Manish Malhotra’s designs and no questions asked I went and got myself one, it did require a few changes as it was collared and I didn’t want a collared dress as I wanted to wear jewellery. The only dress left was the one for Sangeet,so we headed to our local designer Private Collection (next to Cadbury’s House Malaxmi).The designer made a custom designed lehenga and there I had all my wedding shopping done in just 2 days.
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Fun times at the wedding? the most fun was the Rain Dance.. My husband did a surprise dance with his cousin’s for me, which was super cute, I changed and got in the foam and rain. Everyone had fun. Also the reception was fun, because we didn’t have to wake up super early to get ready so we went crazy danced till 7 in the morning, decided to grab some breakfast and got to our rooms by 10.
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Make up Artist- Bharat & Dorris

Wedding Photography- Pooja Studio Dubai & WedRed Mumbai.