She is the new age bride- she could be wearing a rich Kanjeevaram saree and traditional gold jewelery, hands dressed with mehndi and flowers on her hair. Her father walks her down the aisle, she and her groom read their wedding vows, exchange rings and move on to the dais where the registrar is ready to formalize the union. Fusion weddings are getting popular, Indian weddings with a twist, non-traditional in style, and a more intimate option to the ‘big affair’.
Fusion weddings make no compromise when it comes to pre-wedding functions- a fun-filled mehndi, musical sangeet and elegant cocktails but the wedding day ceremony is quite different from traditional weddings with the couple’s own style and beliefs being a part of it. Andrew and Divya decided to have a fusion wedding where they incorporated some American and Indian traditions. Navdeep Soni, who captured their wedding in an equally offbeat style says, “When I talked to Divya and Andrew, their brief was that I should capture the real emotion and feel. It was a two day rocking party where the celebrations and cultures were seamlessly merged. They had an afternoon mehndi where friends made speeches, the sangeet where Andrew and his side performed and the wedding where they exchanged garlands and then rings.”
Wedding planner Nipunika Singh of Bangkok based Élan Events tells us how destination weddings are now transforming. She says, “Having done various scales of weddings, we have seen a different charm in the intimate weddings that cannot be replicated at extravagant affairs. Destination weddings are steering the conventional perception away from the formality affair with an extensive guest list to a more intimate celebration- fun-filled and two or three days of hedonism. Couples are realizing that a more intimate wedding is a great way to have all your closest friends and family celebrate at one place, at one time. And at the end of the 3 day celebration everyone knows everyone’s names. ”
But there is a challenge in planning such intimate events too. Nipunika Singh says, “When the wedding is a fusion of different cultures we need to respect and balance two different traditions and ensure that both sides have experienced their vision of the wedding. Food also becomes very important as we have to be careful in crafting the menu to make sure everyone’s taste buds are satiated.”
And while fusion weddings may be a preferred choice when the bride and groom are from different cultures, they also appeal to some couples from the same community. Navdeep says, “A couple whose wedding I photographed recently hailed from the same community but decided to keep the wedding less ritualistic and more fun. Their actual wedding ceremony included signing in front of the registrar and exchanging rings followed by an eclectic reception. The mehndi and sangeet held a day before, were a total blast– pure fun and excitement.” Welcome to the age of Fusion weddings- where the mantra is good food, a thoughtfully created guest list and a fun-filled ceremony.