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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Solaah Shringar-Mangalsutra

Traditionally, there are five signs of marital status of women, according to Hindu culture-mangalsutra, toe rings, kumkum, bangles and a nose ring. Talking about Mangalsutra, the word denotes a significant meaning. While mangal means aupiscious, sutra can be deciphered as a thread.It is a sacred necklace that the groom ties around the bride’s neck on the day of the wedding in a ceremony called Mangalya dharanam (meaning – wearing the auspicious), thereby giving her the status of his wife and life mate. Thereafter, the wife wears the mangalsutra all her life or till the time the husband is alive as a sign of their marriage, mutual love and goodwill, understanding and faithful commitment to one another.

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The mangalsutra, worn by most married Hindu women across India, is known differently in different parts of the country – ‘thaali’, ‘thaaly’, ‘pustelu’, ‘maangalyam’ or ‘mangalsutram’ in the southern states of India and ‘mangalsutra’ in the northern states. Each black bead in the mangalsutra is believed to have divine powers that protect the married couple from the evil eye and is believed to safeguard the life of the husband. Hindu women are extremely superstitious about the mangalsutra.

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If it breaks or gets lost it is considered ominous. Therefore, the Mangalsutra is much more than a piece of fancy jewelry, but a sacred necklace of love, trust and marital happiness of a Hindu couple – a vital symbol of wedlock.

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Today, the concept of wearing a mangalsutra has changed considerably. It is more of a fashion statement than a symbol of marriage, thanks to modernization. With the progressive times, the wearing of mangalsutra in working women has considerably reduced.

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There is also a marked change in the style and making of mangalsutra over the years. Previously, women used to wear simple design mangalsutra, with small pendants, but now, the trend is to wear short length ones, that too with a single string.

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Instead of gold pendants, they prefer diamond ones. However, the black beads have still managed to remain constant. Whatever may be the reason to adore it, mangalsutra surely symbolizes the real essence and concept of a Hindu marriage.

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