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Ankita and Varun’s love story started with a simple swipe right and was permanently reinforced when they decided to get hitched. For them, marriage wasn’t a conscious next step, it just came naturally. And making sure that this perfectly mismatched couple got memories that would last them a lifetime was WeddingSutra Favorite - KnotsbyAMP who used their prowess behind the lens to capture each emotion expressed at their magnificent nuptials.

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

How They Met
Ankita recollects, “Varun and I first encountered each other on a dating app where we both swiped right on each other. After a few weeks of non-stop chatting, Varun suggested we meet up at a Brazilian restaurant and I immediately loved that he’d suggested a culturally rich place for our first date. Unlike many other couples, we didn’t ‘click’ immediately. Instead, our relationship was cemented gradually over numerous date nights, fun conversations over drinks, spontaneous coffee dates, and long chats about common life experiences. After a while, we realized that we’re imperfectly perfect together!”

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

The Proposal
Ankita recollects, “Even though both our parents knew pretty early on that we were dating each other, I’d always dreamed of having a proper proposal, a dream that even Varun knew about. So, about a month after all our engagements were complete, he planned an outing for us in Mahabaleshwar where we were keen to go and pick strawberries. He’d planned everything meticulously and even sent me a calendar invite some weeks in advance to remind me. However, my suspicions arose when he asked me to wear ‘something nice’ the day before! On the drive over, I knew that he was planning to propose as I spotted a square-shaped box in his jeans pocket.

After the strawberry picking, we went to the Le Meridien Mahabaleshwar Resort & Spa and were taking a tour of the property when he led me outside to a foyer which was beautifully decorated with roses, candles, and a custom-made pillow that read ‘Ankita, will you marry me?’ And even though I had guessed beforehand that he was going to pop the question, nothing could take away the magic of the moment when it actually happened. But he had another surprise under his sleeve for me when my brother and sister-in-law along with my best friends popped in to congratulate us right after I said ‘yes!’”

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Wedding Venue
Keen on an outdoor wedding, the couple started scouting for locations that would accommodate their dream. Ankita shares, “We both wanted to have the phere outdoors and kept that in mind as we scouted for locations. Also, our parents wanted all the functions to be in the same venue which made good sense logistically. Spurred on by the news that The Ritz-Carlton was about to open in Pune, we visited the property just as it was nearing its finishing stages. Its Victorian interiors and its overall grandeur along with the staff’s hospitality truly impressed us, and the decision was made.”

Wedding Planning
With wedding planner Event Dynamic at the helm, the couple’s nuptials went ahead without any hiccup. On the photography front, the duo was extremely impressed with the KnotsbyAMP team’s dedication and the comfort they felt around them. Ankita happily shares, “We were informed about KnotsbyAMP by my cousin and were awestruck by their work from the first glance itself. Looking at their pictures and videos, I felt as if I was walking through those weddings myself. They have an incredible knack of capturing raw emotions at the right moment. We had such fun shooting with the team and they made us feel extremely comfortable. For us, they weren’t just our wedding photographers, instead, they were our creative partners as they advised us on our event lighting and other essentials to ensure they could give us the best pictures possible. KnotsbyAMP was clearly the best choice we made, and I can confidently say that I’ll be collaborating with them for my future events as well.”

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Adding to their talented team were invitation designers Lovenote who awed the guests with their unique and creative designs. Anchor Priyanka Lalwani used her superior communication skills to ensure that each guest felt welcome and included as she kept everyone entertained with her witty observations. Makeup artist Amrita Bokey used her expertise to highlight Ankita’s natural beauty with makeup looks that were completely in sync with her attire. Choreographer Ritika Irani rehearsed with the couple and their family tirelessly and made sure not a beat was missed. Boosting the spirits were DJ Rackish and Sukhi, who with their groovy beats ensured that everyone was on their feet through the entire evening.

Weddings Functions

Mehndi
“Our nuptials kickstarted with a separate mehndi ceremony for Varun and me. Mine was hosted by the pool while Varun had his mehndi on the rooftop. Following ‘a pop of color’ theme, my mehndi had a bright brocade and we gave out floral coin purses as favors. For Varun, we chose a green color palette where everyone dressed up in hues of green and the decor had a rustic touch to it. Our mehndi also doubled up as a welcome party which let guests break the ice with plenty of dancing all thanks to the dholwalas and boliyaan who were present at the venue. But the best part was the surprise dance performance that my bridesmaids had organized for me! This was definitely a fun-filled event where everyone mingled freely without formality.”, says Ankita.

Dressed in a contemporary turquoise blue lehenga with floral embroidery Ankita was all smiles as she posed with her girl squad as they all got henna patterned on their hands. Varun, however, made a striking contrast while complimenting her in his white bandhgala.

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Engagement, Cocktail and Sangeet
“The evening after the mehndi we had our cocktail and engagement party that also doubled up as our sangeet. It was a grand event to say the least and remains one of my absolute favorites to this day. We had bulb archways at the entrance, a trippy LED backdrop behind our stage and glistening hangings near the bar. Keeping in mind the steel grey interiors of the ballroom, we decided to follow a royal purple, blue, and silver color palette. Just before the performances began, we presented a quirky pre-wedding video before everyone which we had shot. Following which, all our family and friends joined in on the stage as we exchanged our rings. We also surprised our guests with a performance by Sophie Choudry who packed an energy-fueled performance. We had so much fun dancing the night away!”, shares Ankita.

Keeping the decor in mind, the bride wore a stunning mermaid purple gown as she made an entrance hand in hand with Varun who donned a deep blue velvet bandhgala.

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Chooda and Haldi
“The Chooda and Haldi ceremony was an intimate and close-knit affair where I was gifted the chooda by my mama the morning before the wedding. Simultaneously, Varun had his tel baan and haldi in which, according to the Sindhi custom, his clothes had to be torn by relatives and friends!”, shared Ankita.

True to tradition, Ankita donned a simple bright yellow salwar kameez for her chooda ceremony.

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Wedding
“For our wedding, The Foyer at The Ritz-Carlton was magically transformed into a pastel-hued venue to accommodate our vision of a floral wedding mandap. Everything looked better than what we’d dreamed of and we couldn’t help but be awed by the soft pastel blooms that adorned the mandap. As we got seated in the mandap under a ceiling filled with fresh tuberoses, we asked our cousin to grab us some coffee. Hence, there are many photographs of us sipping coffee casually while our Maharaj chanted the mantras!”, laughs Ankita.

For her big day, Ankita chose an off white and gold embroidered lehenga and was accompanied by Varun who wore a similar hued sherwani under the phoolon ki chaddar.

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Reception
“Our festivities concluded with a reception held at the same venue as the engagement and cocktail. However, we did change the orientation of the ballroom and added a bold red backdrop with jharokhas. To greet each guest, we had a mini stage with a couch where we could rest in between the meet ups. The bold red and gold color palette was followed everywhere in the decor from the chair backs to the centerpieces. After a heartwarming speech by my dad we met all our family members on stage and exchanged greetings. To end it on a high note, Varun and I converted a part of the ballroom into a dance floor so that everyone could groove the night away.”, shared Ankita.

Dressed in a silver lehenga paired with elegant diamond jewelry, Ankita looked radiant as she posed with Varun who donned a subtle polka dotted three-piece suit for the occasion.

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Ankita and Varun, The Ritz-Carlton, Pune

Advice For Couples
“It’s never too early to start planning a wedding. Make sure you and your partner are on the same page so as to avoid any confusion that might come your way. Family and friends are always there to help, so one shouldn’t be shy when it comes to leaning on them for support. However, my most important piece of advice is to not get too wrapped up in the planning. Instead, make sure to make the most of the festivities! Time flies at a wedding, so ensure you spend time creating memories with your loved ones instead of fretting over the small stuff.”, advises Ankita.

The Wedding Makers
Venue: The Ritz-Carlton, Pune
Wedding Planner: Event Dynamics
Groom’s Outfits: Just Men (Mehndi, Reception), Raghavendra Rathore (Engagement, Cocktail, Sangeet), Shyamal and Bhumika (Wedding)
Groom’s Shoes: Raghavendra Rathore
Bride’s Outfits: Armuse (Mehndi, Reception), Nivedita Saboo (Engagement, Cocktail, Sangeet), Pratap Sons (Wedding)
Bride’s Shoes: Raeez Juttis (Wedding), Sam Edelman (Reception)
Jewelry: Labels of Love (Mehndi), Neelkanth Jewelers (Engagement, Cocktail, Sangeet), Rathod Jewelers (Engagement, Cocktail, Sangeet), Rathod Jewelers (Wedding), Tsara (Reception)
Accessories: More Mischief for the groom (Safa)
Makeup: Amrita Bokey
DJ: DJ Rackish, DJ Sukhi
Emcee: Priyanka Lalwani
Choreography: Ritika Irani
Wedding Invitations: Lovenote

Photography and Videography: KnotsbyAMP

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