India is a country steeped in tradition and rich diversity, and their weddings are no different. They often last for days and can involve various pre-wedding and post-wedding practices. Depending on your religion or region, there will be differences in each ceremony. However, there is one commonality between all Indian weddings; they are all vibrant, fun-filled celebrations of love and life.
We’ve spoken to expert event stylists and planners from Decor-A-Shaan for all the wedding details. If you think a Lebanese wedding is exhausting, wait till you hear about Indian nuptials. Here are five different types of Indian weddings you need to know about.
Nita Tanna, Decor-A-Shaan‘s Creative Director, tells us that the most significant part of the ceremony is the Haldi (turmeric paste) night. This is a small ceremony where everyone applies scented turmeric paste on the bride. It signifies purifying the bride’s skin and gives her a stunning glow. Grooms will also have this ceremony in their respective homes. The Mehndi (henna) night comes next! The saying goes the darker the bride’s henna the more her in-laws will love her!
In Muslim weddings, the bride will wear a Salwar Kameez or a Lehenga, although the bride will be sure to cover her stomach. Some will wear a nose ring on her right nostril that will be replaced with a nose pin once wedded. They also hold Mehndi nights and light candles during the ceremony. They will usually hide the groom’s name in one of the bride’s intricate henna designs and he has to try and find it! Their wedding ceremony is known as Nikah. Here, the bride and groom are in separate rooms until the ceremony is over. During the Nikah, permission is sought from the bride for the marriage in the presence of two witnesses.The celebration continues after the Nikah with more parties!
The Punjabi region is located in the north of India. During a Punjabi wedding ceremony, the bride’s family will try to steal a shoe off the groom. This is called Joota Chupai. If successful, the family will hold the shoe hostage until a fee is paid for its return. With all this mischief, let’s hope the marriage gets off on the right foot! Decor-A-Shaan‘s Nita Tanna says Punjabi weddings are mostly conducted in Sikh temples called Gurudwara . The couple will go around their holy book, Granth Sahib. Although, there are different Punjabi groups and some of them perform a normal Hindu wedding .
This ceremony is for the early risers. Malayali weddings take place in the morning because of the belief that sunrise is lucky. The whole affair is short and sweet and only lasts a day. The couple performs the ceremony and celebrates afterwards with a traditional meal. A point of difference between Malayali and other Indian weddings is the attire. The bride and groom will wear white and be draped head to toe in gold jewellery.
Bengali weddings are all about colour and decorations. The bride wears a bright red Sari with gold embroidery and has an intricate design painted on her forehead with a paste of sandalwood and kumkum. The couple will exchange fragrant floral garlands, and the wedding guests will often join in on the fun. This practice is known as Mala Badal. Decor-A-Shaan‘s Creative Director, Nita Tanna says the most unique part of a Bengali wedding is the bride’s entry. She makes an entrance to the Mandap on a wooden plank, called a peedi. The bride’s maternal uncles will carry her on the plank and she’ll cover her face with a beetal nut leaf until they have their garland exchange .
Cover Image: @indianweddingbuzz
Written by Sarah Mourtos