With Bollywood as her inspiration, and designer ensembles in her trousseau, bride Chandrika's looks were crafted perfectly for every event.
Based out of Melbourne, Chandrika Bora made sure that her wedding wardrobe showcased the beautiful diversity of her Indian roots, be it her ethnic ‘pahadi’ (hilly/mountain) culture or her marrying into a Sikh family. She put together creations by some of India’s most renowned designers, and paired them with items reflecting her ethnic background, and this added an emotional and meaningful touch to the beautiful garments.
“Arwinder and I wanted our royal Indian wedding to take place in Melbourne. So we chose the Mansion Hotel & Spa at Werribee Park as our venue. Since I love flowers, our wedding outfits had floral designs on them, and the overall feel of our nuptials was that of a beautiful, modern, Australian-Indian summer wedding. In the process of orchestrating this affair, I was heavily inspired by WeddingSutra and all the blog posts about real brides. I did most of the research for my outfits and makeup looks, and the planning of the events was a collective effort by us and our families.”
“Since mehndi is such a joyous and light-hearted function, I wanted my attire to reflect a fun vibe. I chose an outfit from Papa Don’t Preach by Shubhika which had a contemporary and funky feel to it. The skirt’s colours and the 3D work really stood out to me, and I paired it with earrings and a maang tikka that I got from the Indian Bridal Fashion Week.
For my hair and makeup, I wanted something fun and bold so we went for beach waves and hot pink lips.”
“I wanted to create a fresh look for my sangeet, and opted for a beautiful green lehenga by Anita Dongre. I paired it with a kundan necklace that was trimmed with pearls which I picked from Free Rani in Canada. My hair was pulled into a half up- half down style and the look was perfect for the informal yet traditional function.”
“For the haldi function, I wore two outfits. During the ceremony, I wore a lehenga designed by a Delhi-based friend who put everything together in a week’s time, and the outfit looked so stunning! After the haldi ceremony, I changed into a yellow lehenga by Sabyasachi Mukherjee, and paired it with long pastel green earrings that were designed by me. I believe in DIY looks and find it creatively satisfying to wear self-designed pieces. I did my own makeup for this function and went with a natural look that highlighted my clear complexion. I prepped the skin with face masks from Lancôme for hydration and tied my hair in sleek ponytail.”
“For the Hindu wedding, I wanted a regal look and when I stepped into the Sabyasachi Mukherjee store in Delhi and saw this velvet lehenga, I knew I had to go for it. It featured crystals and intricate floral embroidery, and I felt like a queen wearing it. I paired the lehenga with the velvet Bengal Tiger cluth from Sabyasachi. My jewellery, especially the heavy earrings and matching maang tikka, was inspired by Deepika Padukone’s bridal ornaments. The most beautiful personal jewellery at this ceremony was my diamond mangalsutra which Arwinder and I chose together. I also wore a set of gold kaleerein with baby pink tassles.”
“My family hails from the mountains of India and I wanted to represent our pahadi (hilly/mountain) culture by wearing this dupatta which is called a pichoda which brides wear during the ceremony. It’s usually passed down from generation to generation. The one that I wore, fascinatingly, travelled all the way from Himachal to Melbourne! I felt very privileged to wear that on our big day and it made me very emotional.”
“While my outfit was very regal, I wanted my makeup to be modern, and Shindy Gill gave me glamorous eyes and red lips. My hair was inspired by Anushka Sharma, so I sought this amazing floral hair accessory designer in Mumbai who crafted for me a beautiful gajra of white and pink peonies alongside roses for my bun.”
“For the Sikh ceremony, I wore a rose gold lehenga with a long red veil from Rimple and Harpreet Narula. Once again, I opted for a peony and baby’s breath bun accessory which was paired with a pink matha patti and necklace set. Although this was a Punjabi affair, I still wanted to include some pahadi element so I chose to wear a pahadi nath gifted to me by my aunt. These pieces are famous for their large size and intricate design. I had great fun getting ready with Shindy Gill at this event as she did an excellent job by giving me heavy rose gold eye makeup and nude lips for a fresh bridal look.”
“I wanted the reception look to be glamorous and elegant, and the team at the Manish Malhotra store in Delhi were amazing in the way they suggested just the right outfit for me. They helped me pick a white and nude lehenga with intricate details and pearl embellishments. The blouse had caped sleeves which allowed me to ditch the dupatta without making the outfit look incomplete. I paired this with a velvet embroidered clutch from Free Rani which came from Canada and had ‘Mrs Gill’ written on it. Since the reception look was supposed to be modern, I had Hellana give me an amazing dewy makeup look with bold burnt orange lips. Kelly from Kxhair design styled my hair in a vintage style side parting which I thought looked absolutely lovely!”
Advice For Brides-To-Be
“Firstly, enjoy the process, learn to let go and don’t forget why it all started. Often we get so caught up in our expectations that we forget about the real reason for having a wedding – to be able to be with the love of your life! Secondly, take care of your mental health as much as your physical health. And lastly, go for hair and makeup trials to avoid last-minute surprises.”
The Wedding Makers
Venues: Seaview Williamstown (Sangeet), Mansion Hotel & Spa at Werribee Park (Hindu Wedding), Gurdwara Sahib Keysborough (Sikh Wedding), The Luxor Function Centre (Reception)
Bride’s Outfits: Papa Don’t Preach by Shubhika (Mehndi), Anita Dongre (Sangeet), Sabyasachi Mukherjee (Haldi and Hindu wedding), Rimple and Harpreet Narula (Sikh Wedding), Manish Malhotra (Reception)
Shoes: Alice Mchall (Sangeet, Haldi and Reception), Jimmy Choo (Hindu Wedding), Crimzon (Sikh Wedding)
Jewellery: Free Rani Canada (Sangeet, Hindu Wedding – Hathhool and Reception), Khanna Jewellers (Wedding), Purab Paschim, New Delhi (Wedding – Nose Pin), Raabta by Rahul (Sikh Wedding – Matha Patti), Ankita Jewellery (Sikh Wedding), Malabar Gold & Diamonds (Reception)
Floral Jewellery: Prune Bride (Mehndi), Floral art by Srishti (Hindu and Sikh Wedding)
Accessories: Sabyasachi Clutch (Hindu Wedding), Clutch from Free Rani (Reception)
Makeup: Lips to Lashes Makeup (Mehndi), Jazz Me Up (Hindu and Sikh Wedding), Hellana Makeup Artist (Reception)
Hair: Lips to Lashes Makeup (Mehndi), Jazz Me Up (Hindu and Sikh Wedding), KXhair design (Reception)