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Few weddings are as romantic as the Indian wedding. Rituals are important in all, but the wedding customs depend on the specific caste and community, as they all have individual traditions and cultures. The Bollywood movie Hum Apke Hain Koun showed the exquisitely intricate Indian wedding in all its glory!
Indian brides are stunning! 'Solah Shringar' means there is 16 adornments that complete an Indian bride - an epitome of beauty. From elaborated saris to the lovely Mehndi designs. Remember to get your mani / pedicures done 3 days before the wedding so that the Mehndi can be applied 2 days prior to the wedding!
Of the many rituals, some are protective from evil eye and ill omen during the pheras, by covering their hands with sacred cloth.
The Punjabi bride wears the red and ivory bangles, Chudas, given to her by her mother's brother for good omen. They also have Kaleeres (gold or silver ornaments/trinkets) tied to the Chudas. But mostly the rituals are fun, such as when the saalis (sister-in-laws) hide the brother-in-law's shoes and only give them back upon payment.
The Tilak Ceremony is for the Hindu groom when his in-law males tilak his forehead. They use Kumkum (red turmeric powder) and it brings luck. Then the groom and his family receive gifts.
Or in Gujarati the bride's mother tries to catch the groom's nose with baraat's arrival. Another is the Aeki-Beki where the bride and groom have to fish out ring from a pot of water, milk, vermillian and coins.
The Sikh Anand Karaj takes place in a Sikh temple, called a Gurdwara. During this Cereomy of Bliss the Baraat arrives with the groom on horseback with a young boy. Close relatives and friends meet for the Ardaas (Sikh Prayer), and end it with the celebratory Milni ceremony, giving hugs, good wishes and garlands.
The pre-wedding Jain Mada Mandap takes place at both family homes, performed by the priest.
The Popular Kala Shah Kala is often heard at the Punjabi Wedding!
Kala Shah Kala
Kala Shah Kala mera kala hai sardar
Gorean nu dafa karo
Main aap tiley di taar
Gorean nu dafa karo
Sas sariye tere panj puter
Do ilbi Do sharabi
Jera mere haan da
Oh khilya phool gulabi
Kala Shah Kala…
Indian Wedding Menu's often consist of light salads and some pulses, meat and vegetable dishes, rice dishes which may be pulao or plain, breads - Naan, Chapatis, Poor or Parantha and halva or Kulfi as dessert.