Sanya Budhiraja and Rahil Kalra, Delhi
A stunning eco-conscious wedding that celebrated love and nature.
Consultant Sanya Budhiraja and Pharmaceutical Professional Rahil Kalra marked the beginning of their new journey this February with a wedding that reflected their love for all things nature. From sustainable design ideas to working with brands and companies with eco-friendly policies, waste management social enterprises, tree plantation projects, and more, the entire affair was consciously crafted to minimize their carbon-footprint and do their bit for the environment on their special day. Read on to know how they achieved this beautiful, thoughtful celebration.
How they met
In Sanya and Rahil’s love story, it was their fur babies that played cupid! Living in the same society, the two met a few years ago while walking their dogs Cookie and Bailey. A turning point in their journey came in the form of an adorable indie pup Dilly that Rahil was fostering. Helping him take photos of her to help with her adoption, Sanya got to know Rahil better over a sunny March morning with a conversation that was full of laughter, hopes, and dreams. After that, their walks and endless conversations grew into something special. Even though Dilly passed away a few months later, she became the reason they fell in love, and there was no looking back.
In Feb of 2022, Rahil asked Sanya to marry him with the most moving, meaningful proposal that honored the essence of their relationship. Sanya shares, “Rahil popped the question in the very spot we had started our journey all those months ago clicking adoption pictures of Dilly. It was probably the most certain and easy “yes” I’ve ever said!”
Given their fondness for nature and all living things, the couple was certain they wanted to be surrounded by them on their special day and opted to host their wedding festivities across two lush farmhouses in Chattarpur, one for mehendi and cocktail and the other for the wedding. Both venues complemented their intimate, romantic decor, and provided the most beautiful natural backdrop for their winter wedding.
Curating their entire celebration to be vegan and eco-conscious, they brought on board like-minded vendors such as Kwality Catering to curate a fully plant based menu and The Good Event Company to incorporate eco-friendly elements in the wedding décor. From waste management to outfit choices, the couple looked at every aspect, even the smaller ones such as using cruelty-free make-up and lab grown diamonds, to ensure everything was in line with their vision. With the help of Green Consultant Ripu Daman, they also ensured everything from excess food to flowers used was reused and recycled for minimum wastage. They also did their bit to break gender barriers in tradition by having their wedding officiated by a female priest, Acharya Shruti ji.
What they did differently:
As nature lovers, Sanya and Rahil decided to start their new life together with an Eco-Conscious Wedding. Here are a few things from their unique celebration that we hope would be adopted by more couples:
‣ Guest List: A conscious step in limiting their guest list by 50% by simply being more thoughtful about the people they included in their special day reduced their carbon footprint by a lot.
‣ Location: Picking a location where majority of the guests were situated thereby minimizing the air and road travel associated with outstation and destination weddings.
‣ Venue and Time: They chose naturally green venues and timed the events to be majorly in the day. This not only reduced electricity use but also gave them stunning photos in natural lighting.
‣ Decor: They restricted single-use items in the decor and focused on using setups that could be reused by the decorator. They also chose more sustainable options such as jute in the designs. The flowers used in decor were given to the social enterprise, Nirmalaya to be repurposed to make incense sticks, etc.
‣ Food: They opted for only plant-based food to lower the carbon footprint of their meals, as well as avoid any harm to animals on a day that celebrated their love. The surplus food was donated to the less privileged by the NGO Robin Hood Army.
‣ Plastic and Recycling: Glass water bottles, matkas, and aluminum cans were used instead of plastic and responsibly recycled by the social enterprise Sahaas.
‣ Post Wedding Project: As a gift giveaway, they planted a tree in the name of every guest through Grow Trees.
‣ Tree Plantation: As their first act after their wedding ceremony, they planted a tree to celebrate their new beginning!
‣ Lab-Grown Diamonds: They chose lab-grown diamonds for the rings as opposed to naturally mined diamonds to reduce the scope of environmental or human conflict and abuse.
‣ Other Elements: Chalkboards instead of single-use signboards, cloth napkins, cruelty-free make-up, etc.
The festivities kicked off with a boho mehendi soiree followed by a cocktail night. The rustic decor was imagined in an earthy palette of deep reds and rust with pampas grass, wooden furniture, billowing drapes, hanging rugs, and more. Thoughtful messages were written on chalkboards on every corner to spread their message. The bride channeled a boho goddess in a floral red lehenga by Aastha Narang while the groom sported a pistachio green kurta-jacket set by Ashish Soni as they danced the night away with their friends and family.
The romantic day wedding exuded “Sunday Brunch” vibes with lavender and dark pink flowers, flowing pastel drapes, and rattan furniture. The bride wore a pastel pink Rhea Kapoor lehenga while the groom matched her in a sherwani by Ashish Soni. They exchanged unique green varmalas made of leaves and were wed by a female priest in a heartfelt, empowering ceremony.
Advice for couples
“The biggest lesson we learned while planning our wedding was that it is possible to have that fun wedding you want while being more mindful about the waste you generate. It takes a few extra steps to go green and think about all the eco-friendly measures you can take to reduce your carbon footprint, but it is possible. Trust us when we say we had the most fun and happiest two days of our lives and so many of our guests vouch for it, but we felt even better knowing we did our bit by being responsible and going green!”
The Wedding Makers
Wedding Coordinator: Weddings by Dhruv Chauhan
Decor: The Good Event Company
Priest: Acharya Shruti Ji
Green Consultant: Ripu Daman
Food Donation: Robin Hood Army
Recycling: SAHAAS, Nirmalaya
Groom’s Outfits: Ashish Soni
Bride’s Outfits: Aastha Narang (Mehndi), Rhea Kapoor (Wedding)
Makeup: Makeup by Maitreyi
Bartender: Mohan (Barjockey)
Caterer: Kwality Catering
Entertainment: Sharma Ji and the Happy Factory
DJ: DJ Sharan
Post Wedding Tree Plantation Project: Grow Trees
Photography and Videography: The White Box