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Long-distance wedding planning is never easy. However, Gayatri and Romit roped in their loved ones to pull off a wedding that was rich with traditional rituals, fun events and family bonding. Their wedding pictures captured by WeddingSutra Favorite - Reflexion by Nishchay Shinde make it clear that their collective effort was a beautiful success. The bride shares with us the highlights of the wedding. 

Gayatri and Romit, Pune and Mumbai

How We Met
“Romit and I first met through common friends in Chicago, at our college's homecoming party in the fall of 2011. Although we both took classes in the same buildings, we didn't get to know each other until the spring of 2012. One day that spring, I bumped into Romit in the cafeteria, and we ended up spending the afternoon together. He got my number under the pretext of joining me for a game of squash. After that day, we started spending more time together and got to know each other pretty well. Somewhere between spring evenings at Millennium Park walks along the lakeshore, sunsets at Museum Campus and the hunt for the best ice cream in Chicago, we realized we couldn't imagine a life without each other. After college, our jobs took us to different cities, and after a few years of living in different cities and seeing each other on weekends and vacations, we finally ended up in Seattle together!”

Proposal
“The proposal was such a sweet surprise. Romit asked me to marry him on top of the Smith Tower in Seattle, which is a historic Seattle landmark with old-world charm. It holds a very special place in our relationship. To avoid suspicion, he invited our friends from Los Angeles to the tower under the pretext of showing them around. As we were giving our friends a mini-tour, I turned around to ask him something, and he was down on one knee with a beautiful ring in his hand asking me to marry him! He arranged for everything to go off without a hitch.”

Wedding Venue
“We picked Pune as the city for the wedding since it served as the perfect midpoint for both our families who would be traveling for the occasion. I have spent four years there, and it holds a special place in my heart. I'm a huge sucker for old-world charm, and Hotel Sheraton in Pune is strikingly grand. So it was the perfect pick!”

Wedding Planning
“Our wedding was a well-coordinated, trans-Atlantic effort! We decided not to hire a wedding planner and our wonderful families in India pulled off most of the planning flawlessly! We did not make it to India till a few weeks before the wedding, but we helped with putting the details together over phone and Skype! That is what made it much more fun!”

Wedding Functions

Celebratory Dinner
“Traditionally Marathi weddings have the ‘Seemant Pujan’ the night before the wedding. We decided to skip that and instead have a small and intimate gathering of our families. We had not met each other's extended families. Plus, Romit has a huge family he is very close to! So we figured this would be a wonderful way to get to know everyone in a casual setting. We hosted the dinner at the Poona Club. We went with very simple, minimalistic decor for the event. I wore a Chantilly lace saree from Singapore, which was a gift from my aunt. Romit wore a custom-made kurta from Rajasthan.”

Wedding
“We had a traditional Marathi wedding ceremony. I wore a nine-yard Paithani saree with a beautiful brocade ‘shela’ (dupatta). My jewelry comprised family heirlooms passed down from my grandmother. I loved that I was able to incorporate pieces that have been a part of our family’s heritage on my special day! Romit's side of the family came dressed to the nines. The women all wore nine-yard saree in beautiful, bright colors and the men all wore ‘Tilak-topi’ (traditional Maharashtrian turban)! We wanted to keep the decor simple, so we opted for white and red roses and a jasmine veil for the backdrop! After the rituals, I changed into a ghagra designed by my mother who got everything custom-made! Both of Romit's sherwanis were from Kora. I picked Pune-based Amrit Kaur to do my makeup. She is the absolute best, and you can relax knowing she will make you look spectacular! I was very picky when it came to photography and Reflexion by Nishchay Shinde did not disappoint! Nishchay went to college with us in Chicago and knew us well. Having him as our photographer was a wonderful and personal experience for us.”

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Reception
“We wanted our reception to be a night of celebration with our family members, and not just do some boring stage appearances where we mindlessly greeted guests. We both love to travel, so we hosted an elegant travel-themed affair at The Lalit Mumbai with a lot of help from Romit's cousins! They designed the programs for the evening in the form of cute boarding passes instead of table numbers. Each table was labeled as a destination! Romit's siblings hosted the night to perfection, and with heart-warming speeches from our loved ones, we couldn't have asked for a better night! For our first dance, we picked Ed Sheeran's 'Thinking Out Loud,' as the song is special for us since we attended the concert in New York! After dinner, we opened up the dance floor, and everyone had a blast! I wore a custom-designed gown from Izzumi Mehta in Mumbai, and Romit wore a tailored Hugo Boss Suit. Of particular note was the phenomenal food catered by the hotel. At the end of the night, being the foodies that we are, Romit and I gorged on some amazing food, including the keema that Romit still dreams about!”

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The Wedding Makers
Venues: Poona Club (Dinner), Hotel Sheraton Grand, Pune (Wedding), The Lalit Mumbai (Reception)
Bride's Outfits: Peshwai, Pune (Wedding), Izzumi Mehta (Reception)
Groom's Outfits: Kora (Wedding), Hugo Boss (Reception)
Jewelry: Shane & Co (Engagement Ring)
Makeup and Hair: Amrit Kaur (Pune)
Wedding Invites: Minted (Save the Date magnets)
DJ: DJ Pranav Marwah (Reception)

Photography and Videography: Reflexion by Nishchay Shinde (Wedding and Reception)

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