Our initiative ‘Love Actually’ is a photo series featuring engaged couples who actively seek ideas and inspiration from WeddingSutra. The series celebrates the beautiful people in love, as they start their lives together. Because real love can only begin, never end. Over coffee, a makeover and a photo shoot we get to-be-weds to tell us how they met, show us their platinum love bands and talk about their day of love.
Shalini and Nitin, professed their love for each other with exquisite Platinum Love bands at the splendid Shangri-La’s – Eros Hotel, New Delhi. The duo sported exquisite love bands from Malabar Gold and Diamonds to match their elegant style. While Priyanka Baweja took care of the bride-to-be’s hair and makeup, Dev Purbiya captured the happy couple in candid frames.
For some, love arrives with the gushing force of a river… but for Shalini and Nitin, it flowed in quietly, steadily like a stream. Every love story has its own rhythm and timing and Shalini tells us what theirs was like.
“We met at a common friend’s party in Gurgaon. At the time, I was working in London while he was in Australia,” she says. It wasn’t ‘love at first sight’, she says, laughing, “I noticed him at the party because he was the only one who was not hitting on me! I thought he was well behaved and dignified, which are qualities that are important to me. However, we didn’t feel anything for each other.”
While neither thought much of their first interaction, they still added each other on social media. “The first time I reconnected with him was on Facebook because I needed to book a hotel in Goa. It was a last minute meeting that had come up and I needed suggestions for accommodation, he happened to be online, so I gave it a go,” Shalini says. Once she was back, the two decided to meet.
Shalini smiles at the memory, “Our first meeting was hopeless. We figured that we were nothing like each other. He found me too loud and I thought he was far too formal. Both of us liked adventures but our general approach to things was very different.”
They’d realized they’d probably never meet again but fate had other plans. The very next day, Nitin need a lift and knowing Shalini was going to be in the vicinity around that time he called and they ended up seeing each other again. “When he called I agreed to help but tuned him out during the car ride. We hardly talked and I only listened to my music,” she says.
Cut to the following weekend; the two connected again and this time, something was different. “My friends were occupied and so were his but we both wanted to go out so we met once more. As we got talking I realized our family lineages and background were similar to the point of being eerie! And there was a sense of connection! This time, it felt like we knew each other,” she says.
Discovering they were meant to be was still a way away. The couple had a long distance relationship to contend with. Moving back to different hemispheres they realized that the bond they shared was unlike any other! Shalini says, “When I moved back to London, I realized I used to be far calmer when I had him around. I missed having critical conversations and even fighting with him! At this point, he too had moved back to Australia and to coordinate a time to speak was a little bit of a hassle. We argued a lot. Despite that, one day he decided to come and see me in London and used all the eight days of leave he got that year on the visit. That was truly very special. He proposed to me on the same trip before he left and I said yes in a heartbeat!”
The bride-to-be says, “I have never met a more empathetic soul. He is intelligent, a critical thinker and has an intriguing mind. Everyone tends to complain about something or the other at some point. With him that is never the case; when he sees a problem, he starts working on finding a solution to fix it. In fact, even with our relationship, it was the persistence and our willingness to make it work that really lead us to where we are.”
And where they are is precious and rare, “Purity and honesty are part of the foundation of any strong relationship. And that’s the reason I believe that when I look at the Platinum Love Bands I am reminded of the fact that what we share is exceptional, and just more precious than anything else.”
Before signing off she shared with us her experiences of the shoot, “Dev really helped in making the atmosphere comfortable. He was grounded, easy to talk to and let us approach the shoot in the way that was easiest for us instead of laying emphasis on posing in a particular way.”
If you’re getting married within the next year and would like to be a part of ‘Love Actually’ write to firstname.lastname@example.org with the link to your Facebook profiles, wedding date and ‘How you met’ story. Selected couples will be invited for the shoots in Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, and Chennai.