The Annual Edition 2018

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SPRING/SUMMER 2016 print/digital THE ANNUAL ISSUE 2018 print/digital

the MODERN BRIDE

THE BIG BE DARING ANNUAL EDITION

BE DIFFERENT


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JASBINA, THE MATCHMAKER, Dating & Relationship Coach (Confidentiality & Discretion are hallmarks of our process)


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e d i t o r

'

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n o t e

I want to express my sincerest gratitude to all those who contribute to help create South Asian Bride Magazine. The brilliant event coordinators, designers, decorators, florists, lighting specialists and of course the photographers. Thank you to all the brides and grooms who support us, share their memories with us and use SAB as their guide in their wedding planning process. We strive to live up to your expectations each and every time. --Sadaf H. Kherani, Publisher | Editor in Chief Credit: RAGartistry, | www.ragartistry.com, Make-up: Nalani Bott, Location: Biltmore Ballrooms

photo + ar t direction // U shna K han P hotography @U shna K han P hotography planning + styling // L a R ue E vents @ la _ rue _ events stationary + calligraphy // B erkshire N orth S tudio @ berkshirenorthstudio makeup // H ina K arim @ lavisagebyhina hair // K atya R odionova (S tyled by K atya ) @ styled _ by _ katya shoes // O scar de la renta @ oscardelarenta jewelry // T eyjas J ewellers @ teyjasjewellers wardrobe // T he L it tle B lack B ow @ thelilblackbow cake // C rust V egan B akery @ crustveganbakery macaroons // S weet M aresa ' s @ sweetmaresas linens // T ono and C o @ tonoandco florist // S torage D iva @ storagediva model // J ovi H addad @ jovihaddad venue // C airnwood E state , PA @ cairnwood

SOUTH ASIAN BRIDE MAGAZINE, INC. info@southasianbridemagazine.com

ADVERTISING: 404.591.4142 | 888.956.6661 Copyright South Asian Magazine, Inc. No material herein or portions thereof may be reprinted without the consent of the publisher. The publisher assumes no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs or illustrations. Views/Opinions expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the paper and no liability is assumed by the publisher thereof. Advertising copy and artwork are the sole responsibility of individual advertisers.

SHOP AT: www.southasianbridemagazine.com


navypier.com

For an unforgettable wedding, choose Chicago’s gem. Your wedding day deserves the most iconic room in the city. The Aon Grand Ballroom at Navy Pier is steeped in Chicago history and has hosted some of the most luxurious weddings in the past 100 years. With its 80-foot domed ceiling, floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking Lake Michigan and the city skyline, and impeccable cuisine customized by the team behind Phil Stefani’s restaurants, your wedding day will be one to remember for you and your guests.

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b e a u t y

GET THE

LOOK

EYES // PRIMER: MAC Cosmetics Paint Pot in Lay'n Low EYESHADOW: Tarte Cosmetics In Bloom Palette & Anastasia Beverly Hills Prism Palette LASHES: Leong Cosmetics Silk Lash Strip, #12 BLACK LINER: Saleha Beauty, Arabian Nights waterproof COLOR LINER: MAC CosmeticsTechnakhol Liner, Grey Print EYEBROWS: Smashbox soft brown powder trio & MAC eyebrow Pencil, Spike MASCARA: MAC Cosmetics In Extreme Dimension in Black, Waterproof Formula

FACE // FACE PRIMER: Smashbox Cosmetics Photo Finish Primer, Original CONCEALER: BECCA Cosmetics Aqua Luminous Perfecting Concealers, Medium and Light FOUNDATION: NARS Natural Radiance 24-hour Longwear, PUNJAB POWDER: NARS Pressed Powder, Beach & Mountian CHEEKS // CONTOUR CREAM: @contourcosmetics cream Palette, Original ð&#x;Ž¨ CONTOUR POWDER: Hourglass Cosmetics Bronzer, Radiant Light Bronze & NARS Bronzer, Laguna BLUSH: MACCOSMETICS Mineralize, Love Joy & Warm Soul HIGHLIGHT: Becca Cosmetics, Champagne Pop SETTING SPRAY: Gerard Cosmetics Slay All Day in Coconut LIPS // LIPS: Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipstick, Lovely and Stripped LIP LINER: Mac Cosmetics, Soar GLOSS: ColourPop Cosmetics Ultra Glossy Lips, "Pretty in Pink"


model // Juhee Pahuja jewelry // My Bangle Box & Rivaazz Creations bridal designer // Vama Designs

SMOKEY JEWEL-TONED NIGHTS MITASHA SINGH

“I love empowering women and making them feel amazing inside and out. While growing up, my mother always taught me that beauty lies in simplicity. Everyone is beautiful, and their natural beauty should not be masked but be simply enhanced. Makeup allows me to uplift a person’s spirit. The smiles I see on their faces is priceless. And I strive to enhance the natural features of every face I touch with flawless elegance." Mitasha is a freelance makeup artist and owner of M-Sutra Bride with over 15 years of experience in the beauty industry based out of Northern California. Starting as a cosmetics manager behind Macy's department store counters in 2003, she has worked her way through the rungs of the beauty industry obtaining valuable knowledge and experience to better her skills and to provide the best service possible for her clients. Mitasha has represented numerous cosmetic brands over time such as Biotherm, Shiseido, Christian Dior, Clinique, Lancôme, Estee Lauder, Chanel, Elizabeth Arden, Benefits, Sephora, M.A.C Cosmetics, & Guerlain Paris to name a few. Mitasha delivers an expertise in soft glamour and High Definition makeup applications with an emphasis in contour and highlight. Dedicated to creating stunningly beautiful looks while making others feel and look their absolute best through the art of makeup is her passion! Specializing in traditional to soft dewy glam and high definition party and bridal makeup looks, Mitasha takes great pride in providing the ultimate beauty experience for her clients and students.


f a s h i o n

photography // C handani D ua clothing // O omphabian makeup // R utu D alal stylist // K ayal P arakh jewelry // S weta P arikh B espoke models // J asmine S ingh , N azeen S haikh , S onal J oshi assistant // Z eel T hakore

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O omphabian

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TR ADITIONAL TASTE E LEVATE D EXECUTION

Trust Wolfgang Puck to make your next celebration an unforgettable affair whether in the comfort of your own home or staged in the grandeur of a historic venue. Wolfgang’s skilled team of chefs will customize menus to tell your story through food in any setting. From the vegetable-centric delicacies of your grandmother’s kitchen to the fusion of His and Her cultures, Wolfgang Puck Catering will create flavorful memories for you and your guests.

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VENUE

|

E V E N T C O O R D I NAT I O N & D E S I G N

Begin Your

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Surrounded by the breathtaking views of the East Tennessee mountains and offering picturesque backdrops any direction you look, Castleton Farms is the ideal venue for the most romantic day of your life- your wedding.

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865.376.9040 Photos by Finch Photo

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A seamless reflection of your vision. CREATIVECOVERINGS.COM info@creativecoverings.com | 877.410.6367

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ELECTRIC KARMA FULL SERVICE WEDDING PLANNING 201-725-8222 WWW.INSTAGRAM.COM/URVASHI.MISHRA

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Pure Emotions Photography

THE PERFECT PLACE TO START YOUR JOURNEY TOGETHER Welcome to Hilton Orlando, a magnificent AAA Four Diamond AwardÂŽ winning resort, with the mission to turn your vision from dream to reality. This spectacular resort features venues perfect for private Baraat locations, breathtaking indoor & outdoor ceremony options and three grand ballrooms to meet all of your needs. From engagement parties to traditional ceremonies to elaborate receptions, you will enjoy the comfort and convenience of hosting your celebration in one fabulous location.

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6001 Destination Parkway I Orlando, Florida, 32819 | ORLOC_Weddings@hilton.com | 407-313-8458 | thehiltonorlando.com/weddings



Peter Nguyen Photography

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luxury indian wedding photography

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Let us help you write the next chapter of your love story. Our event specialists will create a joyous wedding experience that will stay with you long after the last dance. Visit hyattregencydallas.com for more. #IDoAtHyattDallas


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photo: world vision photography


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WWW.BLUSHBARBEAUTY.COM // 214.618.1561 @BLUSHBARBEAUTY A customized makeup package for your special day. Whether you want to keep it simple or go #fullglam. southasianbridemagazine.com 51

Photo: Hiram Trillo Photography


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w w w. t h e p a j a m a s u t r a . c o m


a d v e r t o r i a l

w w w. t h e p a j a m a s u t r a . c o m

PAJAMASUTRA BRIDE AND BRIDESMAID GIFT BOXES Curated gift sets with a South Asian twist! These fully customizable gift boxes include a PajamaSutra robe, glitter mug and tote, and feature goodies from your favorite brands in a beautifully packaged custom gift box. Order 6 or more bridesmaid boxes and receive a complimentary gift box just for the bride!


f a s h i o n

The Unapologetic Bride designer // M ani J assal // @ manikjassal photo, ar t direction // O vyian P hotography // @ vipoositha styling // D reamers E vents // @ dreamersevents hair, makeup // SYL F aces // @ imsylvie jewels // B anglez // @ banglez _ jewelry models // S hivani P ersad // @ liveshiv

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The Past & The Present We approached this idea from a perspective of respecting traditions, honoring the past, while reaching for something different, more in the present. Weddings in the present day aren’t one dimensional anymore, they’re much more. They are a blend of cultures and traditions, highlighting what they have in common rather than differences. It’s that essence that we wanted to speak to. Traditional Indian weddings have lots of gold and burgundy tones, and while those colors are beautiful we wanted to introduce an unexpected blend of colors and textures that speak to the modern, sophisticated bride & groom.

We teamed up with the incredibly wonderful Reagan Barnes of Events by Reagan who shared our enthusiasm and helped us bring this passion project to life. Keeping with the idea of past and present, we chose the Swan House in Atlanta, Georgia for its history, we chose the south for it’s traditions, and infused something new. We brought together fresh color palettes with lively hues of corals, blues and yellows in the dress; untraditional blooms with interesting textures and hints of gold in the shoes and jewelry. We mixed metals and glassware with fine vintage china and more rustic silverware. Through our incredibly talented team, our aim was to show the possibilities of the unexpected.

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photography + styling // B ijal + A nul S hah of S ansaara P hotography planner + styling // R eagan B arnes of E vents by R eagan flowers // A lyssa I ce of G inger R ose cake // N atalie B ryn of C ake E nvy calligraphy // L ily S tork of L ove L et ter S tudio stationary // J enn R ogers of D e P lume rentals // T racy S mith of C rush E vent R entals makeup // T eri -L yn H iroshige hair // D enise G ober china // V anessa G ilberth of V intage E nglish T ea C up custom linens // P amela L aurent of T he F rench T able bridal shop // L adlee A tlanta venue // T he S wan H ouse , A tlanta H istory C enter film lab // G oodman F ilm L ab

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the modern

BELLE photography // D avid R ams P hoto @ davidramsstudios styling + coordination // A nokhi E vents @ anokhievents makeup/Hair // W hitney O livia @ whitneyoliviamua with EDGE&P riss @ edgeandprissglam clothing // L otus B loom @ lotusbloomofficial bangles // B ig B angles T heory @ bigbanglestheory jewelry // L a T rend B outique @ letrendboutique models // M arianny E gurrola @ naniegurrola & D iamond M onet @ iamdiamondmonet

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The Element of Passion.

DESTINATION WEDDING PACKAGES DESIGNED FOR YOU. Beautiful landscapes frame the most awaited moments. Our Shaadi Royal Bliss Package offers authentic details, personalized ceremonies, fabulous food, and endless options. Exclusively designed by renowned wedding planner Karen Bussen and set against your choice of spectacular settings. Here you’ll find your element, from romantic venues to all-inclusive accommodations. This is Weddings by Palladium – South Asian style. To discover us or book your travel, contact your preferred travel provider, visit PalladiumWeddings.com or call 888-442-3127.

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JAMAICA •southasianbridemagazine.com BRAZIL • SPAIN79

Live the unexplored luxury of a new destination. Costa Mujeres, Cancun. Coming Fall 2018.



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SHAZA + HARRY NEWPORT COAST, CA // ANDRENA PHOTOGRAPHY + BLOOM BOX + EVENTS BY GAZALA Born and raised in Southern California, Shaza Sattar’s talent for finance helped her meet the love of her life while on a work assignment in the Bahamas. Shaza met Harry while they were both working in the finance and pre-development area of a large-scale integrated resort. The three-week assignment stretched out into three years, and along the way, Shaza had the opportunity to get to know Harry, his friends and his family. Eventually, one thing led to another, and the rest, as they say, is history. When it came time to propose to Shaza, Harry chose Harbour Island, which is one of Shaza’s favorite islands in the Bahamas. The island is peaceful and almost untouched, with stunning pink-sand beaches, pastel-colored cottages and quaint boutique hotels. Harry proposed during a romantic, candle-lit dinner at the Dunmore Hotel, and Shaza of course said yes. Shaza and her mother Zoya chose talented wedding planner Gazala Dinshah to expertly handle every detail and to execute the couple’s vision for their event. Gazala’s flair for creativity and timeless elegance reflects her clients’ individual style and personality. Shaza recalled that Gazala’s incredible execution helped make her wedding a dream. The fabled Pelican Hill Resort in Southern California served as a beautiful backdrop for the couple’s vows and the post-ceremony festivities, with Bloom Box Designs handling the gorgeous florals. The lavish wedding décor dazzled guests who had flown in from all over the world to celebrate the couple’s happy day. As Shaza’s father’s heritage hailed from the Maldives, and Harry was born and raised in the Bahamas, the couple wanted to incorporate island and ocean aesthetics into their wedding décor. The choice of Pelican Hill for the ceremony helped bring the sea to their guests, ensuring that they would have a beautiful view of the azure Pacific Ocean. The reception tables were also named after stunning islands around the world. Mirrored tabletops gave the reception décor a luxurious feel, and the inclusion of beach-themed coral and shells helped give the tables a unique and personal touch. The couple’s favorite part of the wedding was the bringing together of friends and family from all over the world. Guests and relatives flew in from The Bahamas, United Kingdom, Australia, Spain, Canada and Pakistan. Shaza recalls that it was incredibly fun to have her desi family and friends dancing to Bahamian music, and equally so to have her Bahamian and British guests dancing to bhangra and Bollywood tunes. This gorgeous couple plans to honeymoon on the Amalfi Coast sometime in the near future. southasianbridemagazine.com 81


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v e n d o r s

photographer // D in a D ouglass , A ndren a P hotography planner // E vents by G azala decor + florals // B loom B ox D esigns draping // F inishing T ouch hair // V anity B elle makeup // L yndsay Z avitz rentals // H arry ' s P arty R entals lighting + dj // F usion S ounds LA venue // T he R esort at P elican H ill cake // C ake S tudio LA stationer y // C ordially C outure ceremony dress // R osa C lara reception dress // M irage C ollection ceremony+ cocktail music // O cdamia M usic G roup

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NIDA + SAMI LOS ANGELES, CA // MATEI HORVATH + KISMET EVENT DESIGN + AJITA CHOPRA EVENTS Sami, born in New Orleans, having grown up in Los Angeles, and I, having been born in England, grown up in Saudi Arabia, then Chicago, and finally Dallas, chances of us ever meeting would seem pretty slim. Thank goodness for the South Asian connection that we all love and hate - everyone knows everyone and everyone’s business. Sami had grown up spending most of his summers in Dallas with cousins, aunts, uncles, and family friends, so he was no stranger to Dallas, and through all these people, coupled with “the brown connection,” somehow found his way to me. One summer in May of 2016, Sami was in Dallas visiting family. The first time we met, we had an instant connection, a shared passion for music, concerts, travelling, and laughter that made our cheeks hurt. We soon found ourselves escaping family and friends for ice cream and Torchy’s Tacos and wound up talking for hours, about 10 hours to be exact, not realizing where the time had gone. We finally got kicked out of Torchy’s Tacos at closing time, exchanged phone numbers and had to say goodbye. This one incredibly long, fun, and laid back meeting kept us hooked for a long distance relationship which very quickly grew to a profound love. For the next 5 months, we talked, texted, skyped, facetimed, everyday, every night and moments in between, constantly checking time differences as Sami travelled all over for work. Somehow amidst his chaotic travels, Sami was back in Dallas at least one weekend a month, for date nights, concerts, movies and meals. Every moment spent together only reinforced how we felt and every airport drop-off only felt worse. It’s funny how they say, “a mother knows best” because as much as I’d like to deny it, my mom knew. She knew in the way I smiled around Sami, or laughed on the phone with him, and she knew in watching him attentively listen, as I rambled on about some new animal video I found. She told me everytime he came, she knew. She called my dad, who was working in Dubai at the time, and told him his baby girl had met someone and he needed to fly out to meet this guy. My dad being the protective poppa he’s always been, was skeptical and eager to interrogate Sami. When I told Sami, my dad was coming, he nervously suggested we all go to L.A. and have the families meet. My parents, my brother, and I spent a weekend in L.A. in October and it couldn’t have gone any better. I just remember feeling this immense sense of comfort and elation, watching our families laugh together. A couple of weeks went by, my dad went back to Dubai and things went back to normal. Back to checking schedules and planning when Sami and I would see each other again. I was having a hard time taking off of work but Sami insisted that I go to L.A. for his nieces 2nd birthday party which was just a couple of weeks away, so I figured it out and booked a flight to L.A. on November 4th of 2016. Little did I know, this flight would be different from any other I had ever taken. As I boarded the flight, I remember being so excited to have a seat empty next to me, which meant I’d sprawl out, put my headphones on and pass out. And so I did. About 45 minutes left in the flight, I was awoken by a flight attendant who tells me the pilot had been paging me over the PA system and asked that I follow her to the front of the plane. Confused, half asleep, and a little afraid, I got up, and followed her. As I walked toward the front in the dim lighting, I felt almost every pair of eyes on that flight staring at me. Suddenly, I heard Sami’s voice on the PA system. I was REALLY confused at this point. I continued to hear this familiar voice telling me how much he loved me and all the reasons he already knew we were meant to be. As I finally made it to the front, Sami was down on one knee, with a stunning ring in hand, asking me to marry him! Every passenger started clapping, taking photos, and congratulating us, and I couldn’t believe what had just happened. I was smiling ear to ear, holding back tears, and shaking from excitement. Apparently Sami had flown to Dallas that morning, spoken to the flight crew beforehand, and blocked a seat next to mine. He also managed to write up a flyer of what he was doing and quietly passed them out to everyone, asking them to take photos and email them to us! Once the excitement had settled, the madness of wedding planning hit us hard. We decided to get married in India and host our last event (the valima) in L.A. So much to be done and none of which would have been possible to plan without the help of Ajita Chopra Events and their countless skype calls and emails at all hours. They helped us coordinate everything for our engagement shoot and event in L.A., I can’t even begin to say how much I appreciated their dedication, attention to detail and intense organization. Ajita was so hands on, I truly felt like the only bride she had. When it came to decor, we knew exactly what we wanted and had at least 100 different pictures for each element and only one could execute it as stunningly and impeccably as Saadia at Kismet Event Design. I just handed over all the pictures and they emailed me the most breathtaking storyboard I’d ever seen. Of course, none of it would have been captured so perfectly if it wasn’t for Matei Horvath, truly a genius with his lense. There are so many others who worked so hard to make this last event of ours a grand finale, and we couldn’t be more grateful to each and every one of them. southasianbridemagazine.com 87


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photographer // M atei H or vath planner // A jita C hopra E vents decor + design // K ismet E vent D esign hair, makeup // S akin a H ussain video // A vec L umiere P roductions sound + lighting // 3 d S ounds catering // N atraj I ndian C uisine cake // S usie C akes venue // H yat t R egency , H untington B each southasianbridemagazine.com 91


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RAJI + NAYAN NEW YORK, NY // SALWA PHOTOGRAPHY + ELEGANT AFFAIRS + SJS EVENT CONSULTANTS

We matched on the Bumble app on January 15, 2016 and little did we know, that was the beginning of the rest of our lives together. As a result of travel and work schedules, I had planned our first date on January 31, 2016 at The Little Prince in SoHo, a place where we eventually became regulars, and it now even has our picture on the wall! From the moment I saw Raji walk in, I knew she was the one. I actually sent a text to my mom and sister right after the date saying exactly that (see www.RajiandNayan.com). After asking Raji, she thought I was really cute and liked me enough to stay out past her 9:30 Sunday night bedtime! I wanted to make sure that Raji was completely surprised during the proposal so I made sure everything was planned to a tee with the help of my sister. I had her manager plan a fake dinner meeting at a restaurant in SoHo; that set off a 6-stop scavenger hunt with clues that were delivered by the waiter in each location leading us to the next spot. I was at the first stop Emporio (2nd date) and each stop after signified a special place to us – first kiss, first I love yous, first date, favorite pizza, etc. The final stop was our home with “Say Yes” as the final clue written on their chalkboard wall. My mom and sister had decorated our apartment in candles and red roses it was sooo romantic! Once Raji said yes, it was on to wedding planning. We chose The Pierre for the wedding not only because of its location, elegance, and timelessness in New York City, but also because it’s part of the Taj Hotel Group and made planning an Indian wedding that much easier. Chef Ashfer provided us with an amazing menu of traditional Indian dishes and accompaniments for our lunch and then fusion inspired dishes for the reception. Also, the cocktail hour was a WOW from Sushi to Peking duck to a full raw bar and an Indian station. Raji used the services of Sonal Shah Consultants for wedding planning services which was one of the best decisions as Sonal and her team were the best to work with. They helped us with the balance of vendor selection and their 20 plus timeline made sure that our day went ahead of schedule! We chose Ceci New York for our Indian inspired all white invitation suite, accessories and a custom floral wall, Anna and Simon Salwa for photography, and Nayeem Vohra for videography. The cake was designed by Ron Ben Israel and was navy with bright sugar flowers to match the rest of the decor. Ron also created our engagement cake and on both cakes, he placed yellow butterflies which were symbolic of Nayan’s late dad. Both cakes were delicious and so special to us. The Wedding planning process was 6.5 months and included some of the more traditional Indian events, as well as 2 wedding ceremonies, one Sikh and the other Hindu as well as some Western elements like a rehearsal dinner at Danny Meyer’s Marta. The day of the wedding felt magical, from the minute we woke up, as we sent each other handwritten notes saying how excited we were. Even though we already had one wedding, our first look in the Rotunda is when it felt real for both of us. That was followed by Nayan’s Baraat down fifth avenue which had the entire wedding parading down Fifth Ave from 63rd street, with Nayan on a beautiful white horse! The best surprise was that people in the street joined in, a taxi driver even stopped his car to get out and dance to the drummers! Raji and Nayan had chosen very bright florals reminiscent of a secret garden with fuschsia orchids, oranges, lots of greenery and hints of yellow. They wore ivory and gold Jaimala gardens with rolled petals flown in from India and fresh white jasmine for Raji’s hair. The ceremony was held in the Cotillion room and the mandap was beautiful with champagne drapery, candles, and so many fresh flowers. Nayan’s real father had passed away when he was 4, and his stepfather had unexpectedly passed away in 2015, he had both of their pictures by a Ganesh in the entrance to the aisle so that they could look down on both of us with blessings. It was literally a dream come true. Some other interesting things that happened throughout this journey is that unbeknownst to Nayan until after the fact, but he planned our first date on the same day his mom and dad did 17 years earlier, and he also proposed on the same date as well. Nayan and Raji also chose to say their own vows to one another during the Hindu ceremony; although not customary, the Pundit, Dr. Ravi Srivastava was happy to oblige. Raji’s vows were super sweet but Nayan’s took the prize as there was not a dry eye in the entire room! After the ceremony was over the bride and groom kissed and danced down the aisle to a bhangra song by Punjabi MC. It was literally the best day and night of our lives, and we wish we could do it all over again!! southasianbridemagazine.com 93


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photographer // S alwa P hotography planner // S on al J. S hah E vent C onsultants , llc video // N ayeem V ohra P hotography & F ilms decor + florals + creative design // E legant A ffairs DJ // DJ I nsomnia band // P aris from BBE sound + lighting // F rost P roductions hair // O nce upon a bride makeup ar tists // A ntonio E strada + J esus E strada cake // R on B en -I srael C akes favors // B it tersweet , NYC invitations // C eci N ew Y ork venue // T he P ierre

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SHRUTI + PATRICK SAN FRANCISCO, CA // BRAJA MANDALA PHOTOGRAPHY + FLOWERS BY EDGAR Like most modern love stories, Patrick and I matched on a popular dating app. We both swiped right. Since we were both busy, Patrick an attorney at BlackRock and I am a general manager at a Priceline Group subsidiary, it took us over a month to actually schedule our first date. Our first date was at a wine bar, popular in the SF tech scene and perfectly fit for after-work drinks; well-known and played-out. The conversation, though, was lively, challenging, funny and real. After Patrick sat down and initial introductions were made, I, ever confident, looked up at the Warriors game playing in the background and declared the game literally over. It was the middle of the 3rd quarter and we both laughed. The ice was broken and we immediately did what our friends would agree we both do often, went deep. What was it like growing up and being one of the only Indian kids in Topeka, KS? Do you remember living in Nigeria and what was it like coming to the States? In a game to infinity could I score 1 point in a basketball game against Patrick? (He claims no). He later admitted that he was drawn to my confidence and immediately apparent love for my family and friends. I was drawn to his humor, intelligence and straightforwardness. There would definitely be a second date. Over the next couple of years we traveled together spent time with each others families, and even had the courage to play some basketball. Eventually, he proposed at Christopher’s Books in Potrero HIll and surprised me the next day with a birthday/engagement party with our friends and family. We understood each other, in part because we grew up with similar experiences. We were both immigrant-Americans. While I grew up in a South Indian Hindu family, Patrick grew up in a Nigerian Igbo Catholic family. Each of us both culturally American and other. We understood what it meant to have families that were perceived as different, assimilating while holding on to this difference. But as we got ready to take the next step, how would we merge these different and rich cultures? Our answer, we would do everything. We would have the standard Indian-Catholic-Nigerian-Hindu-American wedding. Leaving anything out felt like not being honest with important parts of who we are. But it was a challenge. But one met with an enduring and persistent love and support from our families, friends and communities without which it wouldn’t have been possible. We were married in the heart of San Francisco on March 2nd and 3rd. We had four events in the two days so scheduling was tight. Friday we combined two traditional ceremonies, the Sangeet and the Igbo ceremony. Our designer, Edgar, changed the feel of the four story building with draping that made the event feel more intimate despite the size. Palm leaves, amber lighting, bright colors worn by the people in both communities, and a bangle bar where guests could pick from both Indian and Nigerian bangles added to the vibe. Bollywood and West African dances from both communities created the entertainment. DJs performing next to each other seamlessly blended the musical styles of A.R. Rahman and Wizkid. The next day we held the traditional Hindu Ceremony, Catholic Ceremony and a American style reception. Another tight schedule. In the morning Patrick entered the terrace courtyard in the Ritz Carlton on a white stallion with dhol music playing in the background while Shruti entered on a foiled embossed palaka carried by her male cousins. And in the afternoon, the guests attended the CatholicIgbo Ceremony in North Beach at St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church. The women wore beautiful headwraps and the hall was filled with the beautiful sounds of the Nigerian choir. After the two ceremonies, the guests enjoyed a relaxing afternoon, before heading back to the Ritz Carlton for the final hurrah - an American-style cocktail hour and reception. The night was filled with moving speeches from the couple’s parents and siblings, a beautiful flower-encrusted 6-tiered cake, and of course a lot dancing. The highlight was the palpable love we felt from everyone. The next day, exhausted, Patrick and I left for Argentina and our honeymoon. We spent the next two week drinking the bold Malbecs in Mendoza, taking in the beautiful views at Iguazu and enjoying the food, fashion and culture of Argentina.

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photographer // B raj a M andala P hotography planner + designer + florist // F lowers by E dgar hair // R osheen A hmadi makeup // A shley B ias bridal designer (ceremony & reception) // S hyamal B humika video // I mpressive C reations caterer // J alsa and C ordelia C atering venue // S an F rancisco R itz C arlton , S t . P eter & P aul C hurch

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designer // I ndi Y apa A beywarden a mua // V iran J ose P eter hsa // L een a G ampolage and S hane P erera from ARQ S tyle H ouse pictures // S amal B andara fabrics // R oopkala H eritage I ndia and F abric G allery S ri L anka models // T rilby S olomonz , T atum H eris , V isn a F ern ando , H arshani R uman from B rian K erkoven M odels venue // M aniumpathy C olombo , S ri L anka

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photographer // C harmi P ena , C harmi P ena P hotography decorator // R avi V erma , W edding D esign & D ecor makeup ar tist // P auline N obles , F lawless B eauty B y P auline planner // R eema B utala , RB E vent D esign cinematographer // R are A ir F ilms dj + lighting // BWD E vents - A mar S ethi & A mrit M inhas D ance F loor // B ombshell G raphics ethnic attire // S ajda by S uman , H oli CHIC by M egha jewelry // R eemat D esigns models // N ayab A hmed , A ndrea C irillo , R iddhi P arikh traditional white dresse s // I D o , I D o ..

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Hacienda el Carmen is situated in Ahualulco de Mercado, the valleys region of Mexico. Surrounded by agave plantations and sweeping volcanic views it is a piece of history hidden along the tequila route. It offers a unique landscape for couples looking for a destination wedding filled with cultural luxury, charm and genuine hospitality. We used the hacienda's unique features, colours and flavours to inspire destination brides looking to explore Mexico beyond the resort and beaches - authentic, organic and romantic. We fused the hacienda's natural surroundings with three South Asian bridal looks, that are unique and distinct but resonate with the modern, luxury destination bride. The Jalisco Dairies were produced with the intention of displaying the evolution of the South Asian destination wedding, consisting of multiple events, tones and colours.

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JALISCO DIARIES photography + creative direction // G&H P hoto + C inema producer + creative direction // A rora E vents jewelry // J aya & C o . yellow outfit // C handan F ashion red outfit // T he N ew D elhi C ompany grey outfit // A mara C outure floral design + rentals // B ari C oncept hair + mua // M ood B eauty S tudio stationery // L ove , P aper & I nk model // P aola D e A nda , C apital M odel M anagement location // H acienda E l C armen


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BRIDE

photography + ar t direction // U shna K han P hotography @U shna K han P hotography planning + styling // L a R ue E vents @ la _ rue _ events stationary + calligraphy // B erkshire N orth S tudio @ berkshirenorthstudio makeup // H ina K arim @ lavisagebyhina hair // K atya R odionova (S tyled by K atya ) @ styled _ by _ katya shoes // O scar de la renta @ oscardelarenta jewelry // T eyjas J ewellers @ teyjasjewellers wardrobe // T he L it tle B lack B ow @ thelilblackbow cake // C rust V egan B akery @ crustveganbakery macaroons // S weet M aresa ' s @ sweetmaresas linens // T ono and C o @ tonoandco florist // S torage D iva @ storagediva model // J ovi H addad @ jovihaddad venue // C airnwood E state , PA @ cairnwood


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SANDHYA + ARJUN NEWPORT COAST, CA // DUKE IMAGES + BLOOMBOX DESIGNS + ELEGANT EVENTS Where and how did you met? February 2016 in Santa Monica, CA. A friend of mine met Arjun through a mutual friend they both had. The next day Arjun and I met with a group of friends. Initial thoughts/impressions when you met each other for the first time? We both knew we had met someone very special the first time we met. Arjun told his Mom and sister he had met the person he was going to marry the day after we met. We began dating long distance right away. On our third date, my first trip to San Francisco to visit him. I told him he was the One. Describe the proposal. Arjun took me on a surprise trip to Sonoma. He proposed at the place we visited on my first trip to San Francisco. It was a wineryLake Sonoma winery. He rented the place so we were the only two people there, had a private chef and spent the evening there. Describe the wedding planning process. Wedding planning is a bit stressful because of so many different moving parts. Arjun and I tried our best to do the majority of the planning just with our coordinators to minimize all the different opinions and ideas, and to stay true to what we wanted. It’s very time consuming but in the end all the hard work and energy poured into it is so worth it for the lasting memories. Describe the ambiance of the wedding reception, decor, food, special touches and moments. Every event was uniquely it’s own. Thursday our opening party we wanted it to be very lively and fresh to get the weekend started and for excitement to build. So the white Moroccan theme was perfect for that. It had Indian touches without being overtly traditional. And the white was just so elegant and different for a Sangeet. We did different kinds of food stations with some Indian food mixed. Friday the pool party was just a fun gathering for everyone to see each other and continue getting to know new people. It was important to us that many of our friends meet each other hopefully make new friendships they could leave our wedding with. So the casual atmosphere of cocktails and light apps before dinner was great to keep that going. Our rehearsal dinner Friday night we wanted to do away from the resort because Newport Beach is a such a beautiful town and we wanted our guests to be able to leave the resort to see that and experience more. It was a more intimate event with just family and close friends. It was at Red-O in Fashion Island. Saturday morning for wedding we wanted to keep the Rotunda classic and beautiful and didn’t want to over do it. The background at Pelican Hill with the ocean and golf course already provides a magical atmosphere that we wanted to keep that at the forefront as well. Since many of our guests were coming from out of town we new it would take their breath away just the way it is. For our reception we wanted to do something really sexy and stylish. And also very different from our other events. People were taken aback when they came into the ballroom because it was so unique and bold. I wanted the flowers to be low to the table so people could see across to the other person when seated. The black and red velvet also complimented our clothing choices and went with our black-tie theme. A brief paragraph about what makes your wedding special, highlighting the details and ideas you think were most important. Our wedding was special to us because it exceeded our wildest imagination. The most special part was the people that came. They were genuinely so excited and grateful to be there and celebrate with us. Although everything turned more beautiful than we expected or hoped for, they mad e the parties because of their enthusiasm. It was also important to us to have a traditional Hindu wedding and to share that experience with our families and many of our friends. Nutan Shah, Duke photography and Hoo films. Hiring vendors that come highly recommended really makes capturing all those moments you don’t want to forget easy. And they make the process all that much easier because you can rely on them and they go above and beyond. Describe your overall feeling at the end of the wedding day. Our wedding day is a day that we will relive with each other for the rest of our lives. It was truly amazing and very special to us. It was one of the best days of our lives that we will cherish forever. All of our friends and family have told us over and over again that it was the best wedding they have ever been to and are so grateful to be a part of it. We wouldn’t change anything. I wish we could do it again! southasianbridemagazine.com 129


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photographer // D uke I mages planner // N utan S hah and S eema C hen am , E legant E vents decor + design // B loombox D esigns video // H oo F ilms dj+lighting // 3D sounds hair+mua // D olled up by L ulu henna // N eha A ssar sari draping // L ishma P atel bridal wardrobe // F alguni S hane P eacock , S oltee by S ulakshan a M onga , M anish M alhotra venue // T he R esort at P elican H ill

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PALI + JAY ATLANTA, GA // SUSAN STRIPLING PHOTOGRAPHY + WEDDINGS INSTYLE + SJS EVENTS “A uniquely dissimilar pair”, is how the best man accurately described us on our wedding day. He, a contractor from Virginia, and I, a physician of south Asian decent, were brought together by our common values and hearts. We met 4 years ago over a cup of coffee at Starbucks on Franklin St. in Chapel Hill, NC. Our first date was meant to be just a meeting over coffee, but turned into an all day affair. We talked for hours and couldn’t help but want to learn more about each other. I was first struck by his strong presence that was filled with a gentle nature and beautiful soul. Jay says, “I first noticed her beautiful smile that melted my heart. She was full of life and love for all. Despite all the noise today, she was grounded and humble.” Over the next few years we grew our relationship with love and respect for each other and our families as our foundation. We traveled the country and the world together. We share our American culture, but over the years he grew to be a part of our large South Asian village. True to his values and our relationship, the proposal was an intimate heartfelt outpouring of his love on a date that mimicked our first meeting. I jumped into his arms screaming yes! Engagement year was full venue shopping, engagement parties, and a trip to India to spend time with my extended family. It was Jay’s first trip to India! Experiencing it together brought us closer together than ever before. For our wedding, we wanted to express both of our cultures and backgrounds to the fullest. We also wanted it to be a true guest experience, full of joy, happiness, and celebration for all of our family and friends. We were aiming for grace and elegance but with authenticity and comfort. We couldn’t be happier with each venue and vendor. They truly made our dreams come true. We held the garba at the Atlanta History Center. Our Christian ceremony was held in the Atlanta Botanical Gardens followed by a combination cocktail party and mehndhi. The Indian ceremony and reception were held at the St. Regis Atlanta. It still seems like a fairytale.

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photographer // S usan S tripling P hotography planner // S on al J. S hah E vent C onsultants decor + design // W eddings I n S tyle , R agini P atel christian ceremony, reception decor & catering // B old A merican design & catering , S teve B ales video // R ay R oman F ilms dj+lighting // I ndaglow P roductions hair+mua // KC makeup , K ar un a C hani henna // F orever B eauty by M anisha , M anisha P anjwani catering // R icky W alia , W alia H ospitality G roup cake // P erfect W edding C ake by R amon a invitations // K iran B edi , M arigold I nvites garba venue // A tlanta H istory C enter christian ceremony + mendhi cocktail par ty // A tlanta B otanical G ardens indian ceremony + reception venue // T he S t . R egis A tlanta southasianbridemagazine.com 139


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EKTAA + KARAN CLEARWATER, FL // ASAAD IMAGES + SIGNATURE EVENTS + NIKUN EVENTS When it comes to love, you sometimes hear people saying the phrase “when you know, you just know,” and you never quite understand what they mean by that feeling until it actually happens to you. Our story began in 2009 when Karan & I first met. From that first moment, we both knew we were each other’s soulmate. We met through mutual friends in college and as years passed became the best of friends to where we could not spend a day apart. As time went on we both learned something new each day about one another and fell more in love. We shared so many similar interests, yet our differences allowed us to balance each other out. His kindness towards others, generosity and patience is what I had not seen in anyone else. No one understood him and I more than we understood each other. As our love for each other grew more and more over the years, Karan soon realized what the next step in our lives had to be. He proposed on a rainy August 18, 2016 in the most romantic way and at the most beautiful venue of Ca d’Zan in Sarasota, Florida. On our one hour drive there I noticed he was very distracted, but I did not think anything of it. Of course now I understand why he was so nervous. It was intended to be a surprise photoshoot shot by our dear friends for their photography company, but soon unraveled as we walked towards the beautiful view of open water on one side and the Ca d’Zan Mansion on the other. To what I thought would be a playful picture of Karan and I turning around to face each other, I actually found myself turning around to find Karan kneeling on his left knee and calmly asking me to marry him. At that moment I had a feeling of what felt like one million butterflies flying around in my stomach, along with an abundance of excitement and overwhelming joy. I am not entirely sure how he was able to compose himself and say all the words he had planned on saying but he did it, and without any hesitation, I said yes! Ever since I was little I have always had a clear image of how that moment in my life would turn out to be, however little did I know Karan would make it one of the most magical and memorable moments in our lives. I could not have been more surprised; I was so ecstatic at the thought of spending the rest of my life with my best friend. A year and a half later we had the wedding of our dreams and officially tied the knot in an outdoor wedding on March 3, 2018. The thought of actually being married did not quite sink in until the week of the wedding, however it still felt very normal. No nervousness or anxiety, just a whole lot of excitement. As the enjoyable wedding events went on we soon found ourselves getting ready for the big day, the wedding day. I felt the same emotions that morning as I had felt when he proposed but with a hundred more emotions including feelings of anxiousness and nervousness. I could not believe that day was finally here. After we had our First Look photoshoot, seeing him before anyone else calmed my nerves about ninety-nine percent and I knew I was ready to make that walk down the aisle. When newlyweds say their wedding goes by too quickly, they are absolutely right. Not just the wedding itself, but the entire week flies by, but becomes one of the most memorable and special times in your life. The day after the reception Karan and I hurried to look at all the pictures and video footage our close friends and family had sent us. Wishing we could relive those moments, we are so happy we have been able to successfully capture all the precious moments leading up to the wedding and reception. We had the fairytale wedding of our dreams that anyone can only wish for, truly feeling like Cinderella and her Prince. We both knew that from the very first moment we met, I captured his heart and he had captured mine, forever. southasianbridemagazine.com 141


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photographer + video // A saad I mages day of coordination // S ign ature E vents lighting + decor // N ikun E vents hair + mua // P ayal MUA henna // H enn a A llure catering // K hasiyat , I ndia G rill dj // DJ F iroz wedding venue // H oly T rinity R eception C enter reception venue // K apok S pecial E vents C enter southasianbridemagazine.com 145


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ANGEL + RAJAT SEVIERVILLE, TN // HIRAM TRILLO + UTOPIAN EVENTS + K.I. WEDDINGS We Just Fit. It was a cold, rainy day in NYC. And, of course, Angel under-estimated how many layers of clothing were needed to be worn on a day like this one. Rajat, excited to take Angel sight-seeing around Manhattan, couldn't help but notice her shivering despite saying that she was "fine." After getting off the train and walking two blocks on W. 34th, Rajat insisted that Angel go into a store to get something warmer than flip flops for her feet, but she didn’t want to interrupt the date. Angel, finally admitting she was cold, and in fear of getting frostbite, agreed to shop for a warmer pair of shoes. In each store they visited, Rajat, like a true Prince Charming, patiently helped Angel try on every shoe, until she found a pair that fit perfectly. They spent the rest of the day exploring the City, happy and warm in eachother's company. This was just the beginning- both knew that this relationship was evolving into something deeper. A series of moments like this combined with meaningful conversations, constant traveling between New York and Tennessee and countless hours of FaceTime eventually led Angel and Rajat to know that they were the perfect fit for one another and wanted to spend the rest of their lives together. Once we made it official, we quickly jumped into the wedding planning process. We spent several weeks in India to finalize our wedding wardrobe and to celebrate our engagement. Because it was a fall wedding, we chose several pieces made from velvet material and deep fall colors. Asopalav, Kora Design House, and Mona Vora Boutique from Ahmedabad went above and beyond to ensure custom fitting and coordination between the bride and groom attire. We had a vision in mind for our wedding events- one that honored Gujarati traditions, but also embodied our love modern design and simplicity. Being in the scenic Smoky Mountains, we found the perfect venue at the Sevierville Convention Center as it showcased the natural beauty and panoramic views of the mountains all throughout the building. Shushil from Utopian Events truly brought our vision to life through the decor. After months of brainstorming and design meetings, to see the final result was breathtaking. The 5 foot Ganesh centerpiece made from fresh flowers was adorned differently for each of the 4 events by using various accessories and fabrics. This backdrop also made for a great photo-op for our guests. The curvy aisle way illuminated by 2000 candles at our ceremony was by far our favorite part. It was metaphoric for us; it represented our lives not always following a straight and narrow path. Our photographer and videographers, Hiram Trillo and Epique cinema captured all of this brilliantly and were such a pleasure to work with as they truly put us as ease. The DJs from DCS Dynasty were an instant hiteveryone was out of their seats and on the dance floor within moments. All of our guests were impressed with our caterer, Moghul/ Arora Group. The food was delicious and they went out of their way to make sure the presentation was perfected for each event. Our glam squad, Bangs and Blush, definitely nailed each look we envisioned and stayed true to tradition with a hint of added flair. We were very lucky to have worked with Jignasa of K.I. Weddings and her team. We knew that she was reliable, talented, and would be a great troubleshooter, but she truly exceeded our expectations by making sure all of our events flowed seamlessly and that our families were relaxed. Once we kicked off our week long celebrations, it was amazing to see all of the pieces from our planning come together. We were glad to see our friends and family enjoy themselves, whether it was dancing along with the dhol during the baraat or singing along to traditional folk music during our ceremony. There are several moments together that we will forever cherish- especially our first look, zipping off in the Slingshot after the ceremony and being announced as husband and wife for the first time. It was amazing to celebrate this moment with our nearest and dearest and we are especially grateful to our parents who were beaming with joy throughout the entire event. #rajatkiangel southasianbridemagazine.com 147


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BEENA + ANKIT ORLANDO, FL // SONA PHOTOGRAPHY + OCCASIONS BY SHANGRI-LA + EVENTRICS WEDDINGS Ankit and I started dating in 2013 when I was in my last year of college. We found each other on match.com. We started talking to each other daily and our late night phone conversations turned into weekly dates, which then turned into a long distance relationship (being a 1000 miles away from each other). After I graduated college I moved back to Florida to be close to my family. But distance meant nothing to Ankit and I. We both stuck by each other through the highs and lows of being so far apart because we both had high hopes that one day we would becloser together. I took a leap of faith and decided to move to Weehawken, NJ (where I found a job) and finally lived minutes away from Ankit. A year and half later Ankit made his commitment to me and proposed to me in Weehawken, the same place I made my commitment to Ankit by moving there to be closer to him. Ankit and I both dreamt of a beautiful grand wedding, and what better place to have it than sunny Florida. At first we thought it would be difficult to plan a wedding there being thousands of miles away, however, all the vendors we worked with made our wedding planning process easy. Teresa, from Hilton guided us throughout the entire planning process in regards to the venue and accommodations for our guests, and also recommended one of the best wedding planners in Florida, Eventrics Weddings. Our wedding events were planned to the minute and it would not have been possible without a premier event planning team like Eventrics Weddings. They did an amazing job from the minute they were contacted, from vendor recommendations, monthly email reminders, to weekly phone calls, this team did not disappoint. The decorator, Remmal from Occasions by Shangri-La put our vision of all the events including the Mehndi night, Garba/Sangeet night, wedding and reception into reality. The vibe given off at the Garba night was a fun, festive mela theme. We truly felt like were in India doing traditional folk dance with all our family and friends. Our wedding ceremony included soft colors giving off a romantic feel, and two grand elephant statues, which were meticulously decorated, at the entrance of the ballroom to welcome guests. The reception décor was extravagant with a huge chandelier as the focal piece, which made the stage look so beautiful. Our wedding could not have been more beautiful and extravagant, all thanks to Occasions by Shangri-La. Our guests raved about the décor, as not even the smallest details were overlooked, including the hidden Ganesh monogram that was embedded in the floral wall of our mandap. We wanted to pay close attention to the food and drinks, as this is always the most talked about topic at Indian weddings. With the help of Ricky Walia from Café Bombay, based out of Atlanta, guests described the food as not only unique but an out of this world culinary experience. From the taste, to the variety, to the presentations, nothing was lacking. The menu from our three day events were inspired by a number of cuisines from around the world which included, Gujarati, Mediterranean, Mexican, Italian and Punjabi. Ricky also provided a variety of desserts including an ice cream sundae bar, mexican churros, fresh jalebi, snow cones, macaroons, raas mali and liquid paan shots! The Hilton provided an over the top display of french fries and tater tots as a midnight snack for our guests to enjoy during the reception which was a big hit. What’s a party without some of the best DJ’s around. We flew in Premier Entertainment from New Jersey who had the guests partying till 1 am. Rawal Brothers of Florida provided live Garba entertainment, which the guests enjoyed and they even surprised us in the end with Game Of Thrones theme song during Raas. To capture our memories so we can relive them over and over again Sona Photography and Riant Films were tasked for the job. They meticulously shot and filmed every moment. Riant did an amazing job with capturing some unforgettable moments for our same day edit video that was shown to all our guests and us during the reception. We truly could not have been happier with the pictures and videos we have received from both Sona Photography and Riant Films! Ankit and I are truly blessed to have shared such a beautiful, love filled, unforgettable weekend with all our family and friends which would not have been possible without the help of all our vendors! southasianbridemagazine.com 153


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photographer // S on a P hotography planner // E ventrics W eddings decor // O ccasions by S hangri -L a video // R iant F ilms hair + mua // M ichele R enee the S tudio dj // P rimier E ntertainment henna // H enn a A llure garlands // F loral C reations by R anj an cake // P arty F lavors catering // C afe B omb ay venue // H ilton O rlando

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f a s h i o n

i h c i l o h #

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Trendsetter. Rule Breaker. Individual. Anything but basic. They march to the beat of their own drum. The holiCHIC squad for Spring/Summer 2018 is a Badass Band of Fashion Influencers who are admired for their personal style. They have an innate ability to find uniqueness in what’s different and own it. Every carefully-selected detail in their outfit is dripping in personality. Never overdone...just, chic. What better girl gang to gather for a round of dress up? Each influencer has been styled in garments from holiCHIC Designer, Megha Rao and Creative Director, Pooja Desai Shah. They were then asked to deconstruct the look and re-style it themselves - using accessories and pieces from their own archives. The results were fabulous. These ladies prove you can be a badass bride or best dressed guest one week and an effortlessly cool, street style star the next - wearing (and re-wearing) the same pieces. The ladies behind holiCHIC strive to show fashion enthusiasts that you can holiCHIC your way and make your own rules. As they’ve always said, these items are curated by them, but inspired by you. They hope to see their wearers continue to inspire, by breaking the stereotype of what’s “traditional” and styling the pieces in their own fearless, ‘gram-worthy way.

clothing + accessories // @holichicbymegha designer // @megha_hc creative director // @poojadesaishah photo // @farhat.sikder make-up + hair // @makeupbypriyanka @saminaartistry @sickblowouts production assistants // @lifewithami @svitha @nujent @sehrishaf video content // @ronniej9 fashion influencers // @richakal @boufyy @themonoclemuse @maryamishah @rohsiddiqui #holichicmyway #holichic #holichicbymegha southasianbridemagazine.com 159


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MODERN GLAM photography // Matei Horvath Photography Šmateihorvath shoot coordinator // Purvee Patel @pree_theeventplanner model // Manpreet Toor, Celebrity Dancer and Choreographer @toor.manpreet wardrode and jewelry designer // B Anu Designs @banudesigns makeup // Drea V Makeup @dreavmakeup hair // Farah @farahwiththegoodhair venue // The Langham Huntington Pasadena @langhampasadena

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s t y l e d s h o o t

the modern

Gypsy director of photography // Peter Nguyen venue // Beverly Hilton planner // Wedding Store 24 floral stylist // Square Root Designs wardrobe designer // Fashion by Rohini jewelry + accessories // Bhindi Jewelers shoot execution // Planning Elegance models // Anita Galler, Neha Varma and Misha Patel mua + hairstylist // Beauty By Lishma henna artist // Henna Dil Se

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NITYA + PUNEET SAS BAHU TEMPLE, UDAIPUR // HITCHED & CLICKED Nitya, the bride, grew up in a small southern town in America, studied Journalism at NYU, and now works in NYC as a marketer in the fashion industry. Puneet, the groom, was born in Antwerp, Belgium and later moved to New York. He studied Economics at Bentley University in Boston and now works in his family’s wholesale diamond business, Vishinda, in New York City. The couple met thanks to a mutual friend's birthday party in NYC. Nitya was planning on moving to Boston for work around that time, which spurred an engaging conversation since Puneet had attended college in Boston and knew the city well. He vowed to visit and show her around the city, and the rest is history! Puneet popped the question at one of their favorite vineyards in the Hamptons, Wölffer Estate. During summer weekends, the vineyard hosts live music & picnics around sunset. They had already been before with friends so Puneet suggested they go alone this time on a beautiful, sunny Saturday in August. While they were finding somewhere to sit, Puneet stopped a random gentleman standing nearby and asked him to take their picture – thinking nothing of it, Nitya obliged. After taking a few pictures on Puneet’s camera, the man asked if he could take a few on his high-end camera, adding that he could email the snaps. Nitya would soon realize that he was actually a pro photographer Puneet hired and set up to capture the entire proposal! Puneet had even worked out a signal – he bent down like he was going to tie his shoes (they were already tied) and then proceeded to ask Nitya if she would marry him. ON THEIR STYLED SHOOT Though Nitya grew up outside of India, her upbringing instilled pride and passion for her Indian heritage, especially its art. Some of her favorite childhood memories involve Indian art – dancing through 4-hour Bharatnatyam classes, collecting every Bollywood cassette tape possible, listening to live carnatic music during Margali Masam in Chennai, visiting her ancestral sites at Mahabalipuram and Nuggehalli – these experiences always transported her to a different place and time, to a faraway yet familiar dream. Nitya wanted their shoot to capture that timeless dream – and return to a time more simple, spiritual and serene.

Blue Lehenga Credits Outfit: Bhumika Grover Jewelry: Purab Paschim by Ankit Khullar Hair & Makeup: Makeover by Manleen Location: Neemrana Fort Palace White and Green Lehenga Outfit: Bhumika Grover Jewelry: Studio Reves Hair & Makeup: Makeover by Manleen White and Red Lehenga Outfit: Kyra Chabbria Jewelry: Innaya Heritage Jewelry

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Saira

PAYAL SINGHAL SPRING SUMMER 2018


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Saira is the story of a traveller who follows the convergence of Islamic art with local cultures as it spread far beyond its place of origin in the Arabian Peninsula to the rest of the Middle East, North Africa, Spain, Asia, and India. It explores the convergence of the local cultures with the spread of Islam and the birth of a new Design direction as a product of that. The collection focuses on shining the spotlight on timehonoured techniques that are passed down for generations in weaver families and local artisans of Lucknow and Benaras, while also modernizing fabrics in the process. A peek-a-boo effect by way of embroideries, cutwork and filigree on tulle skirts and brocade strip lehengas are a highlight of this line as are fabrics that have been meticulously created with filigree and pure jaali work.

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styling // Nisha Jhangiani photography //Â Rohan Shrestha models // Nidhi Sunil & Dayana Erappa make-up + hair // Kritika Gill

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BRIDES STAY TRUE TO THEIR HERITAGE In the heart of Santa Clara County's Wine Trail, just a short distance from Silicon Valley, a group of creatives gather to reflect on the rich tradition of South Asian weddings. Their goal was simple: The creatives wanted to explore the elements of Indian wedding and how they play out today for the millennial brides.

photographer // Wedding Documentary Photo + Cinema, Vijay Rakhra fine jewelry + mangalsutra // Sampat Jewellers wardrobe // Rimple and Harpreet Narula at The Grand Trunk hair & makeup // Harpreet Chima henna // Mehandi Designer, Neeta Sharma venue // Fitz Place peacock // Gustavo "Gus", Animal Art Farm models // Rajpreet Chahal, Jasmine Tumber


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From Whimsical To Dramatic no one is you and that's your magic... the story of a modern bride

photo+video+lighting // Nspg Media decor // Dreams to Reality attire // LeTrend makeup // Michele Renee the Studio special effects // Echobell coordinator // Eventisme

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AMI + JOSH LOS ANGELES, CA // MATEI HORVATH + SHAWNA YAMAMOTO EVENT DESIGN Like any classic love story, Ami and Josh’s revolves around a Moroccan restaurant in lower Manhattan, the NBA All-Star game, a lastminute NYE trip to Mexico, and a prominent match-making website most commonly known as “Facebook”. In the frozen tundra of NYC, February 2008, a jaded but ambitious New Yorker was introduced to a lovely and intelligent West Coast yogi at a weeknight gathering amongst friends. After a brief and presumably charming conversation, it is alleged that Josh proceeded to friend Ami on Facebook in the coming days. As no evidence exists as to who friended who, we’ll stick with that for now. Years passed and outside of a few online notes sharing travel advice, the pair did not meet again until February 2011. It was NBA All-Star weekend in LA so naturally Josh found a reason to have a meeting there on the following Monday. By pure serendipity, Ami had just moved to Santa Monica a week prior to pursue her Master’s degree at USC. They met for dinner on a quiet Sunday night, and upon unexpectedly talking for hours, it occurred to Josh that perhaps he should find his way out west more frequently in the future. Occasional texts morphed into occasional e-mails and soon, a two-person by-mail book club. Yes, a book club (Breakfast with Buddha!). Later that year, Ami and Josh discovered during a Thanksgiving weekend phone call that they were each without any plans for New Year’s Eve. The feeling of adventure and spontaneity was alive that night, and a plan was hatched to create a trip of a lifetime. Despite having never spent more than a couple of hours together over dinner, it was agreed by the optimistic pair, summarily — WHY NOT?! Enter: Tulum, Mexico. The trip did indeed turn out to be one they’ll always remember. Surrounded by friends, yoga, biking (sometimes too fast; Ami still has the scars), great food and the peacefully romantic Riviera Maya — Ami and Josh discovered an undeniable spark that could not be ignored, 2500 miles apart or not. The following years were a tribute to the journey above all, and enjoying the little moments in between. Ami and Josh began anew. Hundreds of flights were flown, JFK-LAX became LA, and two paths became one. Within the many playlists, the poems, the ups, the downs, the nieces, the nephews, the wild sojourns through 24 countries and counting, and the quiet date nights just the same … they simply could not imagine a happier and more blessed life. “All you need is love. Love. Love is all you need.” Ami + Josh’s Rock & Roll Indian Wedding began with a Sunset Sangeet overlooking the Pacific Ocean at Bel Air Bay Club in Malibu. With an organic and fresh vibe, guests were welcomed with sparkling cocktails and refreshments while watching a beautiful sunset. Then the dancing began with performances by family and friends and a sit down dinner of Indian fusion cuisine. On Saturday, the celebration continued at Hummingbird Nest Ranch in Simi Valley. Guests were serenaded with live Sitar music during the technology-free ceremony and tea time, and then led to a Mediterranean-themed cocktail party with the groom’s favorite hip hop beats. Guests were given their table seating on essential oil spray bottles created by the bride. The crowd then shifted down a beautifully lit pathway to the reception. A clear tent with mountains all around, the night started with a salsa dance by the couple that led into a fun night of beautiful speeches from family, a delicious dinner, and dancing the night away! Special thanks to all our friends and family and the incredible vendors who made our vision come to life! We will never forget this incredible weekend. southasianbridemagazine.com 199



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photographer // M atei H or vath P hotography design+decor // S hawn a Y amamoto E vent D esign videography // A vec L umiere P roductions dj+lighting // S pecial O ccasions henna + hair + mua // M y F air B ride baraat vehicle // LA R ickshaw catering // M onsoon G roup venue // H ummingbird N est R anch southasianbridemagazine.com 203



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KRUPALI + AMAR TORONTO, CANADA // L'ATELIER LUMIÈRE + GPS DECOR + BIJI PLANNERS

I found love when I was least expecting it. Three years ago, a friend whom I have known for over ten years, invited me to a small, intimate dinner party. I remember enjoying a white zinfandel and noticed at the end of the room a guy who the most sharply dressed individuals at the party. I worked up the nerve to speak to him and I was just so smitten by his charm. We talked and talked and it all felt so natural. I’ve never asked him, but I’m sure he was just as smitten with me because he asked me for my number! After two years of travelling, laughter, and excitement we decided to get married! Planning for the wedding was the most stressful, time-consuming, and gratifying times of my life. We learned right away that to create our dream wedding, it was very important for our personalities to match well with our vendors and that’s exactly what happened! The first thing I would recommend to any couple that’s just starting out the wedding planning process would be to hire a wedding planner. We were so blessed to have met Simmi and her team from Biji Planners. She was truly a godsend and guided us through every step of the process including all details small and large. Each one of vendors played an integral role in making our vision become reality. Our photographers, Monty & Jarar, were so professional and helpful and truly went above and beyond in ensuring that everything on our wishlist could be captured. Finally, the week of our wedding had arrived, which was stressful and exciting at the same time. Our pre-events in the lead-up to the wedding were so fun and magical, and it was so incredible to have both our families having such a good time. Our engagement party was so lively and it put such a smile on face to see everyone coming together and having a great time. We had an amazing classic Bollywood theme that was so fun and unique. I would recommend to all new couples to incorporate as much of their personalities into their events, because after all, it is your special day and a celebration of all the things you love as a couple. The day of the wedding started a bit hectic as it does for any bride and groom, and being an Indian wedding it of course started really early! Amar came to the venue with his friends & family in a yellow Lamborghini, while I got ready alongside my family at the venue itself. We had an absolutely wonderful creative shoot amongst stunning purple trees. We were so overwhelmed by the beauty of the location and both so happy that we were both there together. I felt like our wedding went by in such a flash, but the whole ceremony was so spiritual as we had chosen to do a traditional Hindu wedding ceremony. It was very reassuring to have our loved ones participating with us. We had a very long day because we came home after the wedding ceremony with no time to rest since our reception was the very same evening! We quickly got ready with our families and jetted off to the reception hall. I remember walking in to our reception hall and both of us being absolutely floored with how beautiful everything looked ranging from the décor to the florals. We were both so happy because we thought back to all the months of planning and emails and phone calls to craft our dream wedding and it had all come true! Our reception was the best party that we’ve ever had, complete with incredible performances, amazing food, drinks, and some truly unforgettable moments on the dance floor! Our wedding truly represented who we are as a couple and reflected the love we have for each other - that is by far the most important thing! southasianbridemagazine.com 205





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PRIYA + DHRUV NAPA, CA // WEDDING DOCUMENTARY + ANAIS EVENTS

After meeting Priya at a party in college, my attendance in the classes we had together spiked, and we began to find as many (foodoriented) excuses to see each other as we could. After graduation, we made the decision to start our professional lives on opposite coasts, and quickly became experts at navigating the time difference while racking up a ton of frequent flier miles. Two years later, we made the decision to be in the same city together and I moved to San Francisco. Priya picked me up from the airport with a welcome gift: In-N-Out burgers. That’s when I knew we were truly soulmates! Tell us one quality that you love about each other? Dhruv: Priya is the most genuinely caring and empathetic person I know. She puts the happiness and well-being of everybody else before her own, and her warmth and generosity are a daily inspiration to me. Plus, she can be super goofy. Priya: Dhruv is the most loving and funny individual I have ever met. He is always making me laugh and reminds me to not take life too seriously. He pushes me out of my comfort zone and I’m a much better person today for that. How did the groom propose? Priya: I had organized a farewell party with our friends for Dhruv before his move to Amsterdam. Little did I know, he was secretly planning to turn that party into a proposal. On the morning of the party, he got my friends and family to help him decorate the rooftop terrace of my apartment with flowers, balloons and pictures from different stages of our relationship. That afternoon, my roommate sent me upstairs to “start setting up” for Dhruv’s going away party and there he was, dressed up and waiting for me. He took me down memory lane, recounting everything we’ve been through together, and did the one thing I always ask him to do (but he never does) - sing for me. With his guitar, he sang “Collide” by Howie Day and got down on one knee… Did you get the wedding that you wanted? Priya: It was so much more than I could have imagined! There was nothing better than having our family and friends from far and nearby our sides to celebrate in such a picturesque venue. It was such a joy to see all of our friends and family come together in celebration at the Sangeet! It was amazing to watch the dances and performances, and hear the words of love and support from all of the people we care about. That’s what truly got us excited for the weekend ahead! It was also the first time that a lot of my family heard Dhruv sing with his college a capella group, Penn Masala. Our wedding planner did a fantastic job with the decor, making it feel like a colorful and enchanted garden in the greenery of Napa Valley.

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photographer + video // W edding D ocumentary planner + decor + design // A n ais E vents hair + mua // C hristal C aladiao henna // N eeta S harma , M ehndi D esigner dj + lighting // W icked E ntertainment sangeet band // P enn M asala caterer // J alsa C atering stationer y // S haadi P apery ceremony dress // S hyamal & B humika reception dress // M anish M alhotra venue // S ilverado R esort southasianbridemagazine.com 215


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MONICA + TUSHAR ORLANDO, FL // CASTALDO STUDIOS + DREAMS TO REALITY + SIGNATURE WEDDINGS

From the times of teaching each other Raas dance routines in their living rooms to virtual FaceTime dinner dates, Monica and Tushar knew their relationship would be anything but ordinary. Their relationship was one that always thrived off of creativity, improvisation, and the unknown. The couple’s first date consisted of sitting on a couch and making each other laugh for hours on end. It was easy to see that the two would continue to make each other laugh for years and years to come. One day, Tushar flew to New York, where Monica was living at the time, and popped the question. One thing that Monica and Tushar found especially important in their relationship was the union of their two families. The Desai and Chakravarty families became instantly close after meeting and knew they were going to be friends for life. Especially with both family’s common love for Bollywood dancing, singing, and everything in between, it was no question that they were ready to start planning a Gujarati-Bengali Bollywood wedding. With Monica being the founder of Bollywood Touch, a full-service South Asian entertainment company, it was no surprise that every event showcased a number of Indian dance styles. The two families creatively merged traditions and diverse aspects from both the Gujarati and Bengali cultures to show their love towards each others heritage. To say the least, Monica and Tushar were not your average bride and groom. They gave their families and amazing vendors complete artistic freedom to plan the wedding from start to finish. In fact, when Cyndi Benzel of Signature Weddings asked Monica what she wanted her color theme to be, she responded with, “whatever you think is good with me!” Thanks to the Gaylord Palms’ amazing Pam Becker in coordination with Signature Weddings, the event was everything Monica and Tushar could have dreamed of. The couple were asked for input regarding decoration for each event and their response was, “any color but just something classic, simple, and beautiful.” With this, the extremely talented Mehjabeen Memon, owner of Dream to Reality asked to see what Monica and Tushar’s outfits looked like. After taking into consideration the outfits’ style and color schemes, she was able to create the most stunning scenery and decor for each of the couple’s events. Mehjabeen was able to something that seemed impossible - to take the beautifully picturesque Gaylord Palms and add a unique and magical touch for Monica and Tushar. All in all, the series of events were executed more perfectly than the couple could ever ask for. Monica and Tushar were pleasantly surprised by the amazing performances exhibited during the reception and even jumped in themselves for a few fun pieces. The reception ended with a special and beautiful performance by the groom - who brought Monica onto stage as he played the ukulele and sang to her. Thanks to M4U Events, the reception flowed seamlessly and ended with exactly what Monica and Tushar wanted - a perfect night of music and partying with friends and family. Every moment, from start to finish, was elegantly captured by the amazing Castaldo Studios with their creative photography and videography. The couple would like to give special thanks to their amazing vendors including: wedding planning and organization by Signature Weddings and Pamela Becker of Gaylord Palms; decoration and design by Dreams to Reality; photography and videography by Castaldo Studios; sound, lighting, MC, and pyrotechnics by M4U Events; hair and makeup by Ruqaiyya Khan and Tejal Patel; catering (with vegan options) by Khasiyat and Aashirwad Restaurant; custom henna by Salma Jamil of Henna Allure; Bollywood dance choreography by Bollywood Touch. And of course, the most special thank you to the parents and families of Monica and Tushar. Their love, hard work, and support turned this dream into a reality. southasianbridemagazine.com 217


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photographer // C astaldo S tudios planner // S ign ature W eddings decor + floral // D reams to R eality henna // H enn a A llure mua // R ukaya dj + lighting // M4U sangeet band // P enn M asala caterer // A ashir wad & K haasiyat cake // P arty F lavors horse + car riage // O rlando H orse & C arriage dances // B ollywood T ouch venue // G aylord P alms southasianbridemagazine.com 221


f a s h i o n

PAPA DON'T PREACH Available at Pernia's Pop Up Shop Pernia's Pop Up Shop is a premier fashion website and an e-commerce platform housing exclusively curated collections by the most coveted designers of India. As India's leading one-stop destination for all wardrobe needs extending from outfits to accessories, it has given a global access to the pioneering Indian fashion industry ever since its inception. The luxury fashion entity addresses the best of established as well as emerging designers to exhibit a variety for every modern woman to reckon with. Promo Code: SABPPUS (sab readers) w w w. p e r n i a s p o p u p s h o p . c o m

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W E

DO

WE DDINGS

We do different. When you say, “I do”, you don’t want the same old venue. You want memorable. Engaging. Unique. We do different. The Chase Center’s friendly, knowledgeable planners work with you to personalize your ceremony or reception, down to the last detail. Everything from special menus, enchanting spaces, florals and decor to music, hotel accommodations at the Westin Wilmington (connected to the Chase Center) and much more. Whether you prefer a traditional, ethnic or truly extraordinary wedding celebration, we do different. 302.425.3929, option 1 | centerontheriverfront.com, Special Event Inquiry Form

Walk to restaurants and entertainment

Easy access by air, rail or interstate

Historical attractions

Master chef on site

World class hotels

Wilmington, Delaware

Turnkey planning Tax-free shopping



s t y l e d s h o o t

Champagne

chique

photography // Sachi Anand Photography hair + mua // Flawless Beauty by Pauline boutique // Terra Inde designer // Ridhi Mehra, Payal Singhal, Falguni Shane Peacock jewelry // ReeMat Designs models // Chhavi Verg, Shefali Shah, Nikita Dodani

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Desert

THE

BRIDE

photography // JSK Photography @jskphotos wardrobe // Wellgroomed Designs Inc @wellgroomedinc hair + mua // Deux Rosè Beauty Refinery @deuxrosebeautyrefinery henna // Mehndika Joey Henna @mehndikajoeyhenna jewelry // WowSome by Aarav @wowsome_by_aarav model // Lilly Lee @lillymeepinlee


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ANUPRIYA + PARAG JERSEY CITY, NJ // BANGA STUDIOS + ELEGANT AFFAIRS + KM EVENTS MANAGEMENT

It all began the ‘typical’ New York way - online. My profile was fairly sparse, yet Parag was still able to find just enough to catch my attention and make me laugh. Our back and forth banter finally resulted in an eight hour long first date, and the rest, as they say, is history… I am from Australia, Parag is a Jersey boy. I am terrible at karaoke, Parag is a professional singer. I am a social butterfly, Parag is more introverted, and yet our differences brought us close together. We traveled the world, explored all Manhattan had to offer and made each other’s friends and families our own. After two and a half years of blissful dating, Parag decided to pop the question. The engagement was as much anticipated as it was a surprise. On a warm day in May, we were heading to meet some friends for dinner in the city. Parag decided to lead me on a detour through Times Square. We stopped in the middle of 43rd Street and he suggested we take a photo, which at the time seemed like an odd request but I agreed. As we prepared ourselves to take a selfie, I noticed in the background of the camera screen that a photo of us had popped up on the One Times Square Billboard. Bewildered, I turned around to look at the billboard and saw the words “I Love You Anupriya! Will You Marry Me?” flash alongside our picture. As I turned back to Parag, he was on one knee, ring in hand, asking me to marry him. Of course I said yes! Being the private person that Parag is, the last thing I had expected was such a public declaration of love. He pointed to the building next to us and said "Look up there and wave. Times Square has 24 hour worldwide live video streaming. Your family have been watching this entire thing happen live from Australia. They got to be part of our proposal too”. We had a mini photoshoot in Washington State Park, the neighborhood of our first meeting, followed by a romantic dinner at the same restaurant as our first date. He had thought of everything, and I knew even more so how truly lucky I was to be able to spend the rest of my life with this amazing man. And so our 8 month whirlwind wedding planning adventure began. We chose The Hyatt Regency Jersey City on the Hudson for the wedding. We knew right away this was the venue for us, with its captivating and picturesque views of Manhattan providing a gorgeous backdrop for our big day. Our wedding was sophisticated and elegant, intimate and charming, full of personal details and hints of our friendly Australia vs USA rivalry; My custom designed mendhi by Henna for All a nod to our home countries; Our personalized caketopper two little koalas dressed as a desi bride and groom; An Aussie Postbox and Postcards displaying pictures of us on our many adventures served as our guestbook. We had the joy of planning our own wedding, and had an amazing team of vendors to help bring our vision to life. The helpful crew at KM Events Management added finishing touches and day-of coordination. The magnificent décor gurus at Elegant Affairs were able to translate our design dream into a reality. The décor was romantic, opulent and whimsical with white and blush flowy floral arrangements, chandeliers and crystals, thousands of candles, golden touches and a gorgeous wisteria mandap. The foggy New York City skyline was the background to our wedding ceremony. A string quartet floated romance through the night air during the candlelit rooftop cocktail hour. An amber glow filled our reception with glamorous ambiance. Parag being the amazing singer he is took to the stage for a truly memorable performance. DJ Sunny Entertainment helped ensure this was a performance no one would forget and a wedding where guests refused to leave the dancefloor. Our return gift was a donation to a charity close to our hearts; An ode to my Mum, and a thank you to our guests, who returned the gesture by wearing the little pink lapel pins on the night. All the magical memories and personal details beautifully captured by our awesome photographers and friends Banga Studios. We could feel all the love, pure joy and positive energy that enveloped us the entire weekend. If I had to choose one moment that sticks in my mind, it’s that of me walking down the aisle, one a parent on each arm, looking up to see Parag, sehrah pulled to one side, teary eyed and beaming with love. I knew in that instant I couldn’t wait to marry him. We have to thank our families for their undying love, support and for putting up with our craziness during this process. Our wedding weekend came to life with the help our loved ones, and it meant everything to have them by our sides through this amazing journey. southasianbridemagazine.com 239


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photographer // B anga S tudios decor // E legant A ffairs day of event coordination // KM E vents M an agement makeup + hair // S tyle by S usmita henna // H enn a F or A ll dj + lighting // DJ S unny E ntertainment enter tainment // B ollywood S trings , R utgers RAAG catering // B ukhara G rill cake // C arlos B akery video // K rishn a Y alla bridal reception outfit // S abyasachi M ukherjee bridal reception jewelr y // A nita D ongre car rental // R olls -R oyce from J aszy L imo R entals venue // H yat t R egency J ersey C ity on the H udson

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SARAH + AMIT SAN DIEGO, CA // GLOBAL PHOTOGRAPHY + SHAWNA YAMAMOTO + BLUE LOTUS INSIGHTS

Amit and I met while on a birthday trip for a mutual friend almost 10 years ago. We both had no intention of meeting a significant other at the time. I was living in Boston and completing a graduate pharmacy program while Amit lived in LA area growing his company, 3D Sounds. After numerous long phone conversations we started to meet up in person every few months and the relationship became stronger despite the struggles of long distance. I moved to California after several years to ensure I was able to adjust to the west coast lifestyle before we got engaged. It was also a very important step in our relationship since theres a lot to learn of the other person when you are around them on a daily basis. I also wanted to make sure I will be comfortable with Amit’s unconventional work schedule. Once we overcame many relationship struggles, we were ready to get engaged. Amit chose to propose at The Ritz Carlton Laguna Niguel, which is one of his favorite properties in Southern California, He arranged a beautiful setup of flowers and candles that was being set up on the property as I was waiting at the hotel coffee shop. I was under the impression I would relax there while Amit was in a potential client meeting before spending the evening together. We went on a walk around the property before leaving the venue which is when Amit got down on one knee and finally proposed! I expected it was going to happen at any time around then but I was totally surprised that evening. And now the wedding planning starts! I am very lucky that Amit is in the industry and was able to help a lot with the planning. Picking a venue was hard. Amit did not want to feel like he’s at work during our wedding so we started to search for a venue that he never worked at or he worked minimal at. We fell in love with the property at Rancho Bernardo Inn in San Diego since it provided us a semi destination feeling. Picking vendors was next. Amit helped a lot by knowing a lot of the vendors in the industry. He helped by narrowing down each vendor category to 3 and allowed me to pick the one I preferred to work with. This allowed him the assurance that they will do a great job and I can do my research to determine who to work with. Wedding week was amazing. Being from different cultural and religious backgrounds, we wanted to incorporate what was important to both of us. Being a Catholic it was important to me to get married in the church that my parents were married in, and where i was baptized. We got married in the church November 5th in Boston followed by a formal reception. The following week on November 12th, we celebrated the Hindu traditional wedding. The Hindu wedding week started with a Mendhi event at our home. The amazing Neha from Neha Assar Henna Artistry completed my henna designs which incorporated what was important to us, including a globe that signifies our love to travel, love birds which is what a waitress called us on the day Amit asked me to be his girlfriend, penguins which are one of Amit’s favorite animals, fall leaves which signifies my love for the season in New England, and of course 3D sounds logo to honor Amit’s hard work and determination. The next day was followed by Garba night. We had traditional outfits on and danced to Garba music. It was a fun and colorful event with a live band providing music and Mantra catering with a variety of food stations. Before I knew it, it was the wedding day and I could finally marry my best friend and love of my life. Events started with a Baraat with Amit’s family. Naturally, being a dhol player himself, Amit had to join in playing at his own Baraat. The wedding ceremony followed. The decor was amazing and exceeded my expectations. Shawna Yamamoto went above and beyond to bring our vision into a reality. The team really paid attention to every detail that we wanted. For the reception we wanted a different look and really wanted a center focal point. We had Shawna and her team design and install a custom crystal chandelier for the middle of the room which was inspired by the chandelier at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Vegas. This along with the bold red draping definitely gave us the wow factor we were looking for! We also had our logo design on the dance floor. The logo holds a lot of meaning for us as it was initially engraved in the engagement ring that Amit designed, and was incorporated into every wedding milestone- on invitation cards, on wedding favors, on dance floor, and LED screen backdrop, and finally on our thank you cards. It was very special walking into the reception room for the first time to take pictures. Although Amit has worked and seen so many reception designed, he had a tear when it all finally came together. The design and room look exceeded his expectations. The next big surprise for Amit was during the program when the friends dance happened. Amit has always asked me to be a part of the dance and I always denied it as I never really danced before, especially with Indian music. After a lot of dance practice, I was able to surprise him with my performance. I will always remember his smile during my dance. All of these moments were captured by Yogi of Global Photography and Duc of Avec Lumiere Video. southasianbridemagazine.com 245


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photographer // G lob al P hotography decor + florals + design // S hawn a Y amamoto E vent D esign planner // B lue L otus I nsights hair, makeup // B eauty by L ishma catering // J ay B harat , N atraj cake // T asty T emptations venue // R ancho B ern ardo I nn , S an D iego dj + lighting + LED wall + special effects // 3D S ounds video // A vec L umiere wedding outfit // F rontier H eritage reception outfit // D reams C ollection reception musician // A nj ali R ay ceremony musician // R onobir L ahiri

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SAUMYA + KHUSH PALM BEACH, FL // BRAJA MANDALA PHOTOGRAPHY + CAMERON KEATING + L’ESCAPE DESTINATION WEDDINGS The Love Story Three years ago, while I (Khush) was entering my third year of medical school at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, Saumya was enjoying her last free summer before starting her first year there. Saumya and I had known of each other but had only exchanged pleasantries at the many family parties around Jackson, MS. At these parties, we started with small talk about my ACL injury because I was on crutches, but the conversation never got very far as we were always surrounded by family and friends. I remember attending Saumya’s high school graduation party back in 2009 at her house where she didn't even acknowledge me! (Little did we know that we would be having an engagement party there in the future!) Once we had both graduated, our brief conversations shifted towards medical school. A few times I "offered" my advice on the process and casually sent her my number. Saumya, however, did not get the message and many months later, messaged me back with a quick question about med school. Surprised, I jumped on the opportunity to ask Saumya out for ice cream, but Saumya casually turned me down. Broken but not dissuaded, I put my charm to work and asked Saumya out on a second date, this time to her favorite restaurant. One date turned into a whirlwind of texting, facetiming, snapchatting and constantly wanting to hang out with each other. Next came multiple sessions of Netflix binging, celebrations of Ole Miss and Davidson sports, and a never-ending debate on the merits of Harry Potter versus Lord of the Rings. While there were plenty of 'date nights' at our local coffee shops and the library, watching the other one study all night, we always found ways to escape to exciting places around the country. I knew I wanted to be with Saumya for the rest of my life much earlier than my proposal. I planned to propose on an early September weekend but ended up showering Saumya with butterbeer and wands at Harry Potter World to throw her off. Her love for travel and adventure was the perfect excuse for me to convince Saumya to take a surprise trip with me to Rochester, New York. I had arranged for her to be let out of her rotation early one day so her mom and I could kidnap her and take her straight to the airport. She hopped in, we had her favorite food ready- pizza, and had her bags packed. She had no idea where we were off to! At the airport she was having mixed emotions and questioned me constantly, but I wouldn’t budge. We finally made it to Geneva, New York. It was there, on the grounds of a snow-covered castle that I asked Saumya to be my wife. November 24, 2016 will forever be one of the greatest days of our lives. The Wedding Khush and I were looking for a destination that could accommodate both a Sikh and Hindu wedding ceremony since we are different religions. As we entered The Breakers, a one-of-a-kind destination oceanfront resort, we immediately experienced a sense of grandeur and inspiration. We added modern touches to all aspects of the wedding weekend, keeping some classic traditions, such as the bride wearing a red lengha for the wedding. Two wedding ceremonies were held to celebrate the traditions of both families. The wedding weekend was an elaborate affair, extending over 4 days and consisted of several rituals and traditions, starting from November 22-25. The bride wore designer couture gowns to each event, including the Reception which was held the day after the weddings. Two days before the wedding, a vibrant Haldi Ceremony was held in West Palm Beach, which involved applying turmeric, also known as haldi, on the bride and groom’ face, hands and feet by family. The Mehndi event followed, in a which a professional Henna artist adorned the bride’s hands and feet with intricate designs. Bridesmaids and friends also partook in this tradition. One of the many unique aspects of our 4-day long wedding celebration, was the Sangeet Party (a pre-wedding dance and music night) held on a private superyacht, aboard the Biscayne Lady! The bride and groom wanted nothing more than to dance under the stars, cruising through Miami, with a world-renown DJ and family and friends surrounding them. It was an unforgettable experience. southasianbridemagazine.com 251


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photographer // B raj a M andala P hotography planner + travel coordination // L’E scape D estin ation W eddings decor // C ameron K eating , S pecial E vent R esource and D esign G roup hair, makeup // S anj an a V aswani , SV B ridal C oncepts dj // DJ J iten , E mpire E ntertainment video // A&A V ideo P roductions boat rental // B iscayne L ady luxur y car rental // W est P alm B each E xotic C ar R entals venue // T he B reakers P alm B each

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RITI + ANAND FAYET TEVILLE, NC // PETER NGUYEN STUDIO + WEDDINGS INSTYLE, RAGINI PATEL Riti and Anand’s story is one that journeys back 13 years to the hallways of Fayetteville Terry Sanford High School, where their love blossomed in Art History class. Unbeknownst to their parents and many of their friends around them, they had started dating just prior to Riti’s departure for boarding school. But, as the old adage goes, distance makes the heart grow fonder. Anand’s senior year of high school was peppered with much anticipated monthly trips to visit his high school sweetheart in Durham, NC. It wasn’t much longer until he was able to follow her to North Carolina’s triangle area, where they both attended the University of North Carolina together in Chapel Hill, NC. After four years, Riti ventured back down the Tobacco Road to a job at Duke University Hospital, while Anand left the state for various ventures as far as Mississippi and Washington, DC. This couple’s love endured the distance, despite the occasional grueling twelve-hour drive from Jackson, Mississippi to Chapel Hill. Anand eventually returned to North Carolina to attend medical school in the Eastern part of the state, yet he was still living at least 1 hour from Riti, who was starting Physician Assistant school at their Alma mater in Chapel Hill. After three years of medical school, Anand finally asked for Riti’s hand in marriage on a sunny, zephyr swept day in late February at the University of North Carolina’s Coker Arboretum. Rather than ask plainly, he strummed a song fond to Riti’s heart that was made popular by the North Carolina native Avett Brothers. Four years of schooling and countless miles later, Anand and Riti were married in the town they were raised in on a beautiful day in the middle of May at the Cape Fear Botanical Gardens in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Not to be outdone by the natural beauty of the surrounding garden, the mandap seamlessly integrated bountiful yellow and pink roses that reflected Riti and Anand’s wedding attire. Their wedding made one departure from the traditional Hindu marriage ceremony in that they exchanged vows with one another, drawing countless happy tears from the on looking friends and family. Still holding an Ace in their back pocket, Anand and Riti wowed their audience again during their reception with a choreographed routine to a mash up of Ginuwine’s “Differences” and Jagged Edge’s “Let’s Get Married”. After a honeymoon in Mexico, Anand and Riti have started their new life together as health care providers in Winston-Salem, NC at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. southasianbridemagazine.com 257


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photographer + video // P eter N guyen S tudio decor // W eddings I nstyle , R agini P atel hair, makeup // JSK B eauty S alon dj // R oyal E vents catering // T aste of I ndia , W est P alm B each venue // C ape F ear B otanical G ardenÂ

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a ti nve f a s h i o n

wardrobe // @bisouNYC X @Renee_Label influencers // @rohsiddiqui @maryamishah @thechutneylife @the_zlist accessories // @bisouNYC photography // @encoreankur, photo_tatianakatkova makeup // @shadesbysahar hair // @iamkanwalbatool neelam pics influencer/hair/makeup // @hamelpatel photography // @bindiya.patel

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THE HIDDEN GEM

photography // Sona Photography cinematography // Riant Films coordination // Signature Weddings + Events decor // Occasions by Shangri-la fashions // LeTrend Boutique hair/makeup // Henna Allure henna // Henna Allure jewelry (Wedding/Reception) // Le Trend Boutique cake // Party Flavors tables/chairs/linens // Grand Rental stemware // Dishie Rentals stationary // Two Peas Designs dancers // Bollywood Dance Academy favors // Expressions Gift Basket Boutique venue // The Howey Mansion



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CHĂ‚TEAU DE LA BELLE

photo + video // Memories Studio design+floral+decor // Wedding design and Decor planning // Urvashi Mishra, Electric Karma East Coast lighting // Luxe Event Entertainment mua + hair // SV Bridal Concepts wardrobe // House Of Divya cake // ChocaL8kiss menu cards + invites // The Royal Co tiara + bouquet // Flower Devi food design // Moghul Caterers venue // The Marigold NJ


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SIMA + BRANDON BRADENTON BEACH FL // GACIEL SANTANA PHOTOGRAPHY + OCCASIONS BY BALI + LAURA SNOW

Six years ago I moved from Chicago to Tampa. Little did this city girl know, it would be for good. Due to grad school taking up most of my time, I decided to join Match.com. One day, a handsome, beach loving man messaged me. We messaged for a week. Usually people say "I knew he/she was the one at first sight." For us, it was the first phone conversation. I felt like I was talking to my best friend. He was the first and last person I met on match. Our first date was amazing as we spent hours on the outdoor patio of a local restaurant talking, enjoying great food, and sipping wine. However, there was always the difference in cultures as one of our hurdles. We dated secretly for 1 year until one day my parents found out. They were wary like all parents are until they met him. Like I did, they fell in love too. Our parents met and I could not believe how well everyone not only got along, but truly enjoyed one another's company. Finally, grad school was over and for our birthdays we decided to take a much needed vacation to Key West. We took a ferry to a private island called Sunset Key. Before dinner, Brandon as always, was distracted with the marine life under the dock. He proceeded to share his discovery with me. As I peered over the edge of the dock and turned around I saw him on one knee. The timing was perfect with the sun setting over the ocean. The second happiest day of my life. Naturally, due to Brandon's love for the beach and my love for nature we ABSOLUTELY had to get married on the beach. While looking at different wedding venues, we stumbled upon a cute tiki hut on our drive back to Tampa. We had a drink at the bar and fell in love with it! Both of our families had gone through some tough times so we wanted a small intimate fusion wedding where the ones we loved could celebrate with us. With majority of our families coming from the Midwest we wanted a vacation destination. Then there was the dress. With a fusion concept in mind I wanted a dress that combined traditional Hindu with American. I adore white wedding dresses and dress trains of American wedding dresses, but wanted the detail and red accents from Hindu attire. Bhavini with Zimaya worked with me to create the perfect dress! A few months before the wedding, I decided to go to the South Asian Bride wedding show and actually won a concept video with the amazing Ortiz Films! As I walked around I suddenly stopped in my tracks when I saw Gaciel Santana's photography. Never had I seen anyone capture emotions and beauty like she did. That night my original photographer called me and told me she could no longer do my wedding. It was meant to be! I immediately contacted Gaciel. Our wedding day began with my knight in shining sherwani riding on a magnificent white horse. As far as decor, we wanted our decor to be beautiful, but not take away from the ocean's natural beauty. Occasion's by Bali created a jaw dropping Mandap. Our ceremony was a modified Hindu ceremony followed by a Christian Pastor performing vows and blessings on the ocean. We took concepts like flower girls, ring bearers from American style weddings and embedded this into our ceremony with the help of our coordinator Laura Snow. We danced the night away under a large tiki hut overlooking the Gulf of Mexico on the most beautiful day of the year. The ocean breeze was amazing on the dance floor! It was the most perfect day ever! southasianbridemagazine.com 279


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photographer // G aciel S antan a P hotography decor+floral // O ccasions by B ali day of coordinator // L aura S now makeup+hair // M ichele R enee T he S tudio , M ichele R enee Z erda henna // H enn a by P ria djs // J eff B ogner -M obile M usic DJ s cake // H ometown D esserts video // O rtiz F ilms , J ose O rtiz horse // S unshine C arriages of S arasota bridal wardrobe // Z imaya C outure , Z imaya J ewelry venues // G ulf D rive C afe B radenton B each , FL

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SARA + UMAIR INDIANAPOLIS, IN // SAPAN AHUJA PHOTOGRAPHY + INDIANA WEDDING DECORATORS No matter how much you plan, life's blessings ultimately come from up above. I certainly felt that way when Umair came into my life. He was like a breath of fresh air when I least expected it. He's kind, patient, funny, and a true gentleman. It truly affirmed my faith that God has made a pair for everyone and he is truly mine! From the day we got engaged, the whirlwind of wedding planning began! Because of the limited dates of the venues, we only had 4 months to pull off the whole thing! After many trial and errors, we sincerely ended up with some of the most amazing vendors and the most magical evenings! It was only fitting for the theme to our wedding to be "Blessings from Above." This enchanted, royal affair would pose its fair share of twists, turns, and obstacles, but every ounce of effort was worth it! The vision of elegant decor suspended from above, delectable food, and a celebratory atmosphere that our guests would love truly came to life. Don and Michelle from Indiana Decorators did not skip a beat and were able to create the exact vision I imagined! After many long nights on the drawing board, they truly showed their abilities to go above and beyond! We were able to secure the Indianapolis Arts Garden for our Mehndi, a location that fit the theme perfectly. The glass domed venue brought the night sky inside, making the heavens themselves part of the décor. Located at the intersection of two major streets in the heart of downtown Indianapolis, I loved that the metropolitan view also showcased the city, reflecting my hometown roots. In addition to the breathtaking view, vibrant rose balls hung over the dance floor, connected to a colorful array of ribbons. The night was full of light, color, sparkle, dance, and laughter—we had a blast! And then it was time for the wedding day. An enchanted, blush colored garden came to life in the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown, a classic and elegant venue to suit the occasion. Delicate strands of white flowers dripping from above and custom floral chandeliers created the illusion of a whimsical garden. Cascading flower arrangements completed the soft, fragrant ambiance of the candlelit room. Don created a hanging cake stand covered in crystals and beautiful roses which was stunning! And the food! Over 10 live chef stations served different International cuisines including Traditional Pakistani, Mediterranean Shawarma, Prime Rib Carving station, Personalized Italian pasta, a mashed potato bar, custom salad shakers, fresh grilled veggies and polenta mixtures, wide variety of desserts, and so much more! The night was perfect—a romantic dream with mouth watering food and all the people we care about there to celebrate with us. To the flawless details that made my beautiful bridal look. Safinaz custom designed my dream Sana Safinaz wedding gown. Sahar Dada created many of my gorgeous pre-bridal dresses. Abiha Ahmed was a God sent angel to me, not only were her make-up skills out of this world but her level of expertise and professionalism really helped me throughout the weekend. Allison Thatcher did my hair for all my 10 events, and I couldn’t be happier with her work and kindness. We cherish the life long memories we made during our wedding. And although it was a celebration of the beginning of our life together, truly none of it would have been possible without the help of our amazing family and friends. My supportive mother-in-law Farkhanda, my sweet sister-in-law Anza, and my easy going father-in-law Altaf made my transition to my new family easier than I could have ever hoped for. My brothers Shaan and Nabil were with me every ‘whining’ step of the way, but most of all, my devoted and loving parents, Parveen and Wahab, to whom I will forever be grateful. My mother’s love and support for me always kept my head held high. My father, who for his only daughter, did not stop at any limits. From day one on our planning, whatever I wanted, he was there with a pen and paper saying ‘let’s make it happen!’. Loving Family and Friends are the reason these celebrations mean so much and we couldn’t be more grateful for ours. southasianbridemagazine.com 285


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KIRANDEEP & JAIPARTAP NEW YORK, NY // NADIA D. PHOTO + DESIGN HOUSE DECOR

It was April of 2009 when Jp saw me at the Sikh Day Parade in NYC. He was hanging out with his buddies when he saw a glimpse of me at the parade. It was years later when I became friends with his sister and we started to have sleep overs. Every time I would sleep over at his house, he would always come into his sister’s room just to offer me ice cream. Over time, as we began to know each other more, he swept me off my feet and we fell madly in love. Before we decided to settle down, we were together for five years. Jp and I both knew that we were met to be together. After it was clear that we were going to get married, I decided to purchase dresses in anticipation of a proposal. I wanted to be prepared for the big day when JP would get down on his one knee and ask me to be his wife. I would try on new dresses randomly to make sure the dress I selected was perfect for the proposal. However, Jp’s idea of a proposal was very different from mine. He did not put the ring on my finger until after the wedding. I KNOW! I GOT THE RING AFTER THE WEDDING! However, I loved every moment of it. It was not your typical proposal, but his unconventional ways of doing things was what attracted me to him in the first place. After both of our families fixed the date of our marriage, I was super excited to start my wedding shopping. WOW! Where do I even begin. The wedding process was very long. I spent so many hours doing research before I even arrived in India to begin my wedding shopping. I went for the royal look for my big day. I knew I wanted to feel and look like a traditional punjabi bride. It took me a total of six months to figure out what vendors would turn my dream into a reality. I traveled to various cities of Punjab and Delhi until I came across my lehnga at Rimple and Harpreet Narula’s boutique. It wasn’t until I tried on my dress and saw tears in my mother’s eyes that I knew that this was my dress for my big fabulous day. At that point, I was ready for my wedding day. Finding the perfect outfits was a task in itself, but also finding the right vendors was another hurdle. From trying on different types of jewelry to cake tasting, I enjoyed every single moment. My vendors were very accommodating and I am glad that my family was involved in the planning process as well. Because different family members were involved in different processes, there was a lot of variety reflected at the wedding. Aside from the challenging vendor selection, the best part about the wedding was our photo shoot session. It was the only time during the wedding when Jp and I got to spend time alone away from hundreds of guests. We were able to bond on our special day while walking through the gardens and posing for pictures. It felt as if the world around us went silent as we looked into each other's eyes and visualized the future. During the wedding festivities, all the family members came together and prepared special performances for the events. We were lucky to have our mothers, sisters and aunts prepare special performances for the sangeet. To ensure that we maintained the punjabi vibe throughout the wedding, our décor for both sangeets was inspired by Punjab. From rickshaws to autos and from chudiyan to parande, there were bursts of colors at the wedding. In regards to the reception, we wanted a modern, classy décor for the event. The color scheme for the décor resembled our reception outfits. Since the reception took place in downtown of Manhattan, we wanted the décor to be bold yet classy. Lastly, the wedding as whole was fun, and colorful. I could not have asked for more. I definitely enjoyed myself at my own wedding. My only advice to Brides- To- Be is just be happy on your special day. Have a smile on your face, because at the end of the day you are blessed to be marrying the man of your dreams. The great highlight of the wedding was my wedding trailer because I live through it everyday. southasianbridemagazine.com 291


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SNEHA + NIKHIL LOUDON, TN // FINCH PHOTO + DARLA WALKER, CASTLETON FARMS Sneha was raised in Tennessee and Nikhil in California. They are a fun-loving, sincere, happy and hardworking young couple who met during their undergraduate studies at Washington University in St. Louis. Together, they imagined an intimate, but private, wedding with a few close friends and family members, all of whom were thrilled to share in the couple’s happiness. When Sneha shared her vision with her beloved Grandmothers, they convinced her that her family’s heritage needed to be embraced and celebrated as if she were in India. With the desire to honor their wish, while being true to their own unique personalities, Sneha and Nikhil decided upon understated elegance, with a touch of whimsy and the atmosphere of an enchanted garden for the bride. The couple worked hard to reflect their traditional Indian cultures with their own personal touches throughout the wedding. To bring reality to their dream of the perfect wedding, the couple turned to Darla Walker, who is the Principal Planner of Castleton Farms, with its historic charm and 108 acres of picturesque settings. The planning started a year and a half in advance and to validate the authenticity of their traditional culture, three different buying trips were made to India, one by Sneha and her parents, one by Darla and a final trip by Nikhil and his family during the planning process. With the help of her entire team, Darla Walker created a Carnival - Mela for the Bride’s Mehndi. She additionally created an offsite, elegant and traditional Sangeet with a California flavor for the Groom. The events kicked off on a Friday night, with the Mehndi being held on the lawn of Castleton’s vineyard, overlooking a pond. The colorful ethnic décor presented a magical setting with the henna ladies and the traditional lounge seating, reminiscent of the ambience and atmosphere of the sights, scents and sounds of a traditional Indian wedding. There was an amazing amount of tangible love and energy on the first night of the festivities. The DJ added even more energy to the evening by revving up the crowd and pulling everyone to the dance floor beneath the lights. The Saturday morning event of Baraat was spectacular as Nikhil mounted a well-muscled,16.5 hands, white Percheron. He rode up the graveled road from the barn and made his entrance through clouds of brilliantly-colored smoke bombs, before stopping near the three-tiered fountain of Castleton’s Manor where Sneha waited inside for him. The work started two weeks in advance, when All Occasions Party Rentals // Chattanooga Tents began erecting the 30 meter structure to be used for the Shaadi & reception dinner. It took three days to raise the massive structure and an additional day for the flooring of green turf to be laid. Constructed with clear vinyl, the top of the structure peaked at 34 feet. Their florist, Samuel Franklin Florals, hung over 5,500 feet of garland with strands of marigolds & orchids, creating the effect of an enchanted garden throughout the 3 day event. Over 10,000 rose petals were used for the traditional décor, as well. Eleven glass chandeliers floated overhead, shedding their lights onto the elegant gold, ivory and mango draping done by Castleton. The tri-colored drapes bordered the open sides of the structure and were pulled back in massive swags over the 34-foot entrance. Clearly, the massive structure presented the wedding as a traditional Indian Temple. The central focus was on the Mandap in an enchanted garden that could have been in Tuscany, a favorite place of the young couple, but with a touch of Tennessee added to it. The Wedding Dinner had a Street Fair feel, the couple wanted their guests to feel as if they were stepping out of Temple onto a typical vendor laid street found in India. Chef Rajan Mistry created a variety of individual food stations that ranged from traditional Jalebi to Mexican food and everything you can imagine in between. The guest experienced spicy popcorn, edible spoons containing every delicacy possible with fusion cocktails galore - !! Perhaps the most impressive of feats was when the massive structure was flipped from the wedding ceremony of 500 guests to a seated meal of 750 guests. Castleton’s Design and creative team of vendors made this transition in about four hours – after the guests left, moving wedding chairs out and moving other dining chairs in, along with tables, florals, setting white glove, all while building a stage on top of the floor to seat 28 people, bringing in a living wall behind the stage. Surrounded by candles, flowers, love, family and friends throughout the three days, how could a wedding be more perfect? A wedding and a couple no one will soon forget. southasianbridemagazine.com 297


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photographer // B en F inch , F inch P hoto planner + designer // D arla W alker venue // C astleton F arms florals// S amuel F ranklin F lorals rentals & tent structure // A ll O ccasion P arty R entals tent liners // R aj T ents catering // C hef R aj M istry , D istrict E vents and C atering + A ll O ccasion C atering draping // K risten M assengill + C astleton E vents

makeup ar tist // J amie W alker , B angs and B lush hair stylist // W endy P eery , B angs and B lush videographer // M ilestone P ictures enter tainment // DJ H arsh , E ncore E ntertainment theatrical lighting // B andit L ites baraat horse // S ugar C reek C arriages henna // J agu bride’s lehnga // S abyasachi groom’s sherwani // S unil M ehra southasianbridemagazine.com 301


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MODERN PRINCESS photographer // P eter N guyen , P eter N guyen S tudio event producer & stylist // P urvee P atel , P ree E vents makeup and hair // L ishma P atel , B eauty by L ishma couture wardrobe // Y asmin B outique L os A ngeles talent // A mira T arsadia

Fashion Brands Black and purple sari // Tarun Tahiliani Black lengha // Sabyasachi Sari // Sabyasachi Gold dress // Gaurav Gupta Coral lengha // Shyamal & Bhumika Shoes Black shoes // YSL Gold shoes // Valentino Jewelry Black outfit //Alexis Bittier Black outfit //Chunky black Rose - Vera Wang Gold Gaurav //Tikka and Hath Phool - Anita Dongre Black Sabyasachi lengha // Necklace- Anita Dongre. Tikka- Yazmin Jewelry Gold Sabyasachi sari //Tikka- Yazmin Jewelry. Ring - Priya Chhabria C302 oral lengha // Earrings/tikka- Yazmin jewelry southasianbridemagazine.com


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Bohemian photographer // S ona P hotography planning // E ventrics W eddings video // R iant F ilms decor + design // O ccasions by S hangri - la printed material // D ogwood B lossom S tationary henna artist+pinning // T ejal P atel H enna hair + mua // M ichele R enee the S tudio video // D owntown H orse and C arriage wardrobe // A lisha ' s C reations chair rental // O rlando P arty rentals venue // F our S easons O rlando

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roop A BODY POSITIVITY CAMPAIGN PRESENTED BY T&R EVENTS & L'AMOUR

Photographer // Gagan, Banga Studios @bangastudios Producer & Creative Director // Tajrean, T&R Events @tajraj.events Creative Strategy Coordinator // Shefali, T&R Events @tajraj.events Venue // Scarborough Convention Centre, Senthuran @scarboroughconventioncentre Décor & Designer // Raj, Dream Par ty Décor @dreampar tydecor Dancefloor Vinyl // Tony, Designer Dancefloors @designerdancefloors Florals // Rubina, Ananda’s @anandas.ca Cinematographer // MPSG Weddings @mpsginc Make-Up + Hair Stylists // Shirley & Jenny, The Beauty Concept by Shirley Wu @beautyconceptofficial @shirleywuofficial Archana, IMSYLVIE @imsylvie, Priya @bpar tistry Henna Ar tist // Divya, Henna by Divya @hennabydivya Jewelry // Malinda, Banglez Jewelry @banglez_jewelry Outfit // Anisha, La Milni @la.milni Models // Anisa @anisahaq, Thanuska @thanuska.s, Ramisa @ramisatopia, Imoshini @imoshinijeya



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SHILPA + STEVE DRIPPING SPRINGS, TX // STUDIO UMA + WILD SKY EVENTS Steve and I met in early 2015 at a hamburger shack called The Shed. I’m not sure what I was expecting from that hastily arranged lunch, but it certainly wasn't a three hour long, never ending conversation with the man who I would eventually marry. As we look back on that time now, he says that he knew that I was the one right away. I wasn't as sure, but knew immediately that I was drawn to him and that he was so very different from anyone else I had dated. We come from very different backgrounds, but still have so much in common. We are both foodies, love the same types of music, and are always planning a trip somewhere. But mostly, we are both very family oriented and this is what really propelled our relationship towards marriage. When it came to planning the wedding, we had so many cultural differences to consider. My family is Gujarati, and Steve’s family has been in Texas since the 1800’s. We wanted to honor both traditions equally and so set out to plan a wedding weekend that would have the best of each. I am very lucky that my future in-laws were so happy and excited to engage in all of our traditions and embrace them fully. Steve and I visited a quite a few wedding venues before we were even officially engaged. We knew that we wanted a Texas Hill Country setting, but had no idea how popular those venues were. As we entered the Sacred Oaks site at Camp Lucy, in Dripping Springs, we immediately knew that we wanted to get married under those beautiful trees. With luck, they had exactly one weekend available the following April. And suddenly, without even being engaged, we had a wedding date! So began a year that could read like a rom-com. Wedding planning is stressful enough in the best of situations. Throw in a life or death illness, a work project that could derail the whole wedding, and a groom who thought we could throw it all together in a few months, and you can see that I had my hands full. It took a wedding planner with a lot of vision to help us have the weekend of our dreams. We could not have done it without Kate Goddard, of Wild Sky Events. She was the calm in the storm of that year of planning. She created a plan A, B, & C just so we would have all contingencies covered. I never felt stressed about the details knowing that I could trust Kate to help me achieve the vision I had. From helping to design our wedding paper suite with By Badal, to picking Studio Uma to capture the weekend on film, to making sure that each detail was executed just as I pictured, Kate was my rock. Our wedding weekend was a perfect mix of both of our heritages. From the opening night at Gruene Hall, the oldest dancehall in Texas, to the wedding and reception at Camp Lucy, it was filled with moments with family and friends laughing and dancing. The Mendhi party had a very unique feel with jewel toned fabrics and flowers, a craft cocktail bar, Indian street food, and a DJ that would not stop. I loved looking up at the end of the night and realizing that I was still on the dance floor surrounded by three generations of my favorite people. The beauty of the wedding site still stuns me with the majestic oaks, Texas wildflower inspired Mandap, and the Indian marigold garlands that adorned the limestone columns. Seeing it before anyone else, at our first look, was very special to the both of us. And lastly the cocktail hour and reception, with the outdoor tent and lawn games was so much fun for all of our guests. It was hard to get them to go in when it was time for dinner. But once in, they were treated to an amazing spread of Texan and Indian inspired delicacies. The beautiful centerpieces, also inspired by the Texas wildflowers, are still being talked about in my family. Our wedding hashtag was #bollywaco, a nod to where we both come from. It was an incredible weekend filled with a lot of love and laughter. Our favorite moment came at the end of the Baraat when both of our families came together and joined in blessing our marriage. southasianbridemagazine.com 317


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photographer // S tudio U ma planning + design // W ild S ky E vents floral // W him F loral henna // N isha H enn a A rts catering // W him H ospitality linens // L a T avola rentals // 10 th C ollection , U nique D esign and E vents music // T erra V ista S trings lighting // I lios L ighting D esign venue // C amp L ucy

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NEETHI + HARSHA FT. LAUDERDALE, FL // CASTALDO STUDIOS + + OCCASIONS BY SHANGRI-LA + EVENTRICS WEDDINGS

Harsha and I met four years ago on an online dating website. He was from Michigan and I was working on a research project in Ohio at the time. I had applied for a few jobs, some out of state. Prior to our fourth date, I found out that I got a job in Pennsylvania. When I told him that I would have to move, he said, “I’ll come visit.” I thought it was sweet of him but I did not see how this would work out. I did not want to be in a long-distance relationship. As you have probably figured out by now, that’s exactly what we ended up doing. About two and a half years later, he proposed! We initially did not know where we wanted to get married. His family is from Michigan and mine is from Florida and India. We knew we wanted an outdoor venue and a rustic theme. We looked at a lot of venues in multiple states. We needed a venue that met all our needs, such as multiple event spaces and proximity to the airport to accommodate our out of state guests. The Fort Lauderdale Marriot Harbor Beach Resort & Spa met all these requirements. Once we had our venue picked out, we began our search for vendors. We realized it was difficult finding them as neither of us were in Florida. After months of research, we decided we needed a wedding planner. We choose Eventrics Weddings from Florida. Brittany and Melinda were amazing! Right away, they found out what our vision was and what we were looking for in our vendors. They gave us a bunch of recommendations and they reached out to the vendors to set up appointments, etc. All of a sudden, Harsha and I felt things were finally falling into place. For décor, we wanted a rustic but elegant theme. When we met with Remmal from Occasions by Shangri-la, it was clear that he understood our vison. He has a huge warehouse which has everything you could dream of. It was such a relief when we showed him our Pinterest board and he showed us pieces in his warehouse corresponding to our theme. One of our biggest priorities was having delicious food at the wedding. Both our parents were big on having Indian food served. Harsha and I wanted to make sure we incorporated some of our favorite foods into the wedding as well. We choose Madras Catering due to their unique taste and presentation. For our Welcome Dinner, we sought to take advantage of the Marriott’s beautiful outdoor space for a fun and semi-formal event. Our guests enjoyed the beautiful beach front terrace, as they had their henna done from our mehndi artists, played lawn games, and danced under market lights. For dinner, there were stations such as chats, dosa, and chicken and waffles. Our wedding ceremony was designed to have a clean and elegant look, using the natural beauty of the resort in lieu of extensive decor. Our Mandap had taupe draping with matching rustic florals with a view of the ocean in the background. The theme for our reception was a “Midsummer Night’s Dream.” The entrance to the ballroom was decorated with a tunnel of foliage with crystal chandeliers. Keeping with the rustic theme, the ballroom was decorated with greenery, grapewood, and vibrant fresh floral of various sizes as centerpieces. When our wedding weekend finally arrived, we were pleasantly surprised that we were not as anxious as we thought we would be. Our wedding planners and their team were on site ensuring everything ran smoothly and resolving any last-minute issues. When we first walked out to the terrace on Friday night and saw our family and friends, we were filled with emotion, realizing that everything had come together so perfectly. Looking around, we were able to take in quick glimpses of all the details, how beautiful the space looked and how wonderful the weather had turned out. The rest of the weekend flashed by in a blink of an eye. Months of planning had come to an end. Looking through our wedding pictures makes us want to go back and do it all over again. southasianbridemagazine.com 323


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photographer + video // C astaldo S tudio planner // E ventrics W eddings decor // O ccasions by S hangri - la hair + mua // K iss this M akeup henna // H enn a A llure dj + lighting // V olcanix P roductions caterer // M adras C afe cake // B at ter C o . D essert C ollection stationar y // D ogwood B lossom S tation ary baraat horse // W ind C hase F arms venue // H arbor B each M arriot t , F t . L auderdale , FL southasianbridemagazine.com 327


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SURBHI + AVINAY CHANTILLY, VA // KEITH CEPHUS PHOTOGRAPHY + L'AMBIANCE What was your first date? After spitting some sweet game for nearly 2 months (#weswipedright), Avinay finally tricked me into meeting him at a restaurant/ bar. While on my way in the brutal DC traffic, Avinay realized he forgot his wallet... he immediately called me and told me he would be unable to grab a drink and pay for the date. This was a HUGE red flag, and I was already ready to quit. But, with a little bit of convincing, I agreed to still meet up. Luckily, he was able to have his brother send him a picture of his credit card and license (thanks bro!) and carry on like a smooth operator. While Avinay did most of the talking, I was quiet as a mouse (oh how things have changed LOL). Nonetheless, we had a great time and the rest is history... How did he propose? After begging and pleading to go on vacation together, Avinay finally took me on a trip to San Diego! I was instantly sold on the idea because he promised to take me to Harry Potter World. On our first day, after touring the San Diego Zoo, he said he knew the perfect spot to catch the sunset, Sunset Cliffs. Although I didn't understand what the big deal was, I went along with his idea. Upon arrival, we scurried down the hills (me in my heels), to catch the last few minutes of the sun setting. Being a social media queen, duh, I just had to capture the moment for my IG. Avi being his typical self, STRONGLY encouraged me to put down my camera for a minute to just enjoy the moment. Begrudgingly, I laid my camera down and got wrapped up into his arms. At that moment he whispered into my ear and then got down on one knee! With tears in my eyes, and a heart full of love, I said yes! Wedding Ceremony: The Wedding Ceremony took place on Saturday morning at the Westfields Marriott Chantilly Dulles. The baraat began at 9:30 and made its way up the cobblestone driveway by 10:00AM where my parents and bridesmaids received him. I had been up since 2:30 AM for make-up and hair, needless to say I was getting very antsy and feeling a little left out since everyone was partying outside. But the thought of marrying my best friend kept me going. My Wedding outfit was custom-made by a tailor in India and designed by me. It still means the world to me because my whole gown was made from my grandmother’s sari. She was my best friend and it meant everything in the world to me that she was there in spirit walking me down the aisle as I walked towards the most amazing person I have ever met. I had Avinay’s Wedding attire made to match my outfit. The theme was royal. I gifted each bridesmaid their royal green and gold lenghas and Avinay gifted his groomsmen their gold and royal green suits. I wanted the look and feel to be regal and elegant. Our families wore all royal colors as well - from our parents to our cousins and to our aunts and uncles! Wedding Reception: Our Reception was held in the Grand Dominion - Westfields Marriott Chantiliy Dulles. We wanted to ensure our guests had a great evening and ate, drank, and danced the night away! Cocktail hour was held at an outdoor terrace and featured live food stations and passed hors d’oeuvres. Although I was stuck inside getting ready, I still snuck away for a couple minutes to mingle with everyone. We were blessed with amazing weather so we decided to extend cocktail hour on the spot. The Dhol Wala came outside and everyone had a blast for another hour!! The reception’s theme was whimsical, like an enchanted garden. We had a monogrammed dance floor! Our respective families gave amazing speeches that filled our hearts with such joy. I cannot thank them enough for all they have done for us! SHOUT OUT TO OUR MOMS AND DADS J The night continued with killer dance performances from our friends and family – my hubby even made a guest appearance which blew my mind! For the rest of the evening, the music was a mix of Bollywood, bhangra and top hits! The drinks were flowing, bellies were full and I walked away with the man I want to spend the rest of my life with. southasianbridemagazine.com 329


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photographer // K eith C ephus P hotography decor // L'A mbiance dj // D yn asty AV makeup + hair // SKS S alon , A nindita A llure henna // N aseem ' s H enn a video // H ire GFP catering + cake // A roma horse // O lde T owne C arriages venues // W estfields M arriot t W ashington D ulles

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SHRI + VINAY SAN JOSE, CA // JSK PHOTOGRAPHY + FLOWERS BY EDGAR & FINE LINEN CREATION + BOBBY BHOGAL

Vinay met Shri the first day of medical school when she came to sit next to him during lecture. She said hello, he checked stocks on his iPhone. She said hello again, he checked the journal Science. She said hello once more, and finally Vinay looked up to see Shri and couldn’t hold back his smile. Like everything in his life, Vinay knew exactly what he wanted and started his pursuit. Fast forward five years and a cross country relationship—on one unforgettable Friday evening, looking up at her again with that same smile, Vinay asked Shri to be his forever. Shri and Vinay decided to have their wedding in the Bay Area and were so blessed to have so many friends and family come in for their big day. They chose the beautiful San Jose Marriott so that their guests would be able to enjoy the downtown area during their three days of festivities. The couple envisioned a classic, royal theme for their wedding with a clean and modern finish, and hats off to Flowers by Edgar and Fine Linen Creation for their stunning décor. Both Shri and Vinay were absolutely speechless when they walked into the hall for the first time to walk down the aisle and again in the evening for their first dance. They were so stunned by how beautiful everything had turned out that they had to pause just to take it all in. The blend of Shri’s Rajasthani and Vinay’s Telugu cultures throughout the day in the form of their traditions, clothing, jewelry, food, and music, created an elegant and memorable display of their families joining together. Since their whirlwind of wedding events, Shri and Vinay have spent hours reminiscing over the stunning photos that the incredibly talented, one of kind JSK photography provided for them. They captured the couple’s real smiles and emotions, all the genuine laughs and tears that could never be staged or rehearsed, and truly portrayed who the bride and groom are both as individuals and as a couple. In each and every photo, Shri can still see Vinay smiling at her with that same look that he had the very first day they met. She wouldn’t want it any other way. southasianbridemagazine.com 335


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photographer // JSK P hotography planner // B obby B hogal design + decor + floral // F lowers by E dgar & F ine L inen C reation hair + mua // G lamanqelique henna // N eeta S harma , M ehndi D esigner dj + lighting // T oofan S ounds /DJ B itzy caterer // B rahma B ull I ndian C uisine video // R obles V ideography venue // S an J ose M arriot t southasianbridemagazine.com 339


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depths of

LOVE

Brides are usually committed to wearing their traditional outfits and jewelry and following customs for their wedding. However, brides today also strive to bring modern elements and their own style into their wedding details through their ensemble, décor or venue. A bride’s idea of what is “modern” is heavily influenced by one of the three great cultures of America, The West Coast, The East Coast, and The South. With the West having a progressive and free culture, it inspires brides to recreate their old traditions with new and innovative styles. These styles are influenced by Hollywood culture with its idea of passionate love, glamour and the beach. You can often see a bride who will take a sari but create a more seductive blouse while wearing all the traditional jewelry pieces. Finding the most glamorous and seductive way to show off her wedding look is often the key element. Other times brides will look for outdoor venues overlooking the water instead of standard indoor ceremonies. Even though the East Coast is established and set in its own ways, todays brides are open-minded and accepting of love in its many forms. Loving one another regardless of color, culture or gender allows a chance to celebrate love for what it is during a wedding between two people. These brides work in a fast-paced environment and don’t always have to wear a dress down the aisle. Women of the South have held on to the tradition of being feminine and proper till this day. Often dreaming about love at first sight and a dream wedding come true, they fill their wedding with fresh flowers and laces all around. They can never go too big with their hair or their dress because they never know when that perfect moment is going to strike. This photo shoot was created to express the three major cultures of America and how they might influence desi brides who live there. The culture of the area one lives in inspires their meaning of what is modern. Which is a key element that makes a bride’s wedding day unique and personal, allowing her to tell her story in her own way.

photography // T eam JSP @ teamjsp concept + styling + direction // N adia A li @ henn adilse video // R eel I nitiative @ reelinitiative


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makeup + hair // H enn a D il S e @ henn adilse props + jewelr y // H enn a D il S e @ henn adilse clothes // D reams C ollections @ dreamscollectionla H enn a D il S e @ henn adilse S hanze @ shanzstudio talent // O mehabib a @ ome W ajeeh @ wajeehwest

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makeup + hair // H enn a D il S e @ henn adilse jewelr y + acc. // S hanze @ shanzstudio D reams C ollection @ dreamscollectionla clothes // S hanze @ shanzstudio B ilal K azimov @ bhkazimov talent // M alinder T ooray @ m 2 ray 5 S ofia D’ M arco @ sofia _ dmarco


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makeup + hair // H enn a D il S e @ henn adilse jewelr y + acc. // D reams C ollections @ dreamscollectionla H enn a D il S e @ henn adilse instruments + props // R anobir @ ranobirla clothes // D reams C ollections @ dreamscollectionla H enn a D il S e @ henn adilse S hop K yn ah @ shopkyn ah talent // S immi S ingh @ simszter M asoud K han @ mokhan southasianbridemagazine.com 347


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MODERN

Classics

photography // @ motion 8 films hair + mua // @ kissed _ by _ kaur henna // @ hiralhenn a clothing // @ j ascouture 13 jewelr y // @ kaurturecollection wedding coordinator // @ behlevents female models // @ kirandeep . n agra @ divyathomas _ male models // @ romasthind  @ princenotsocharmin @ sher uthehusky _ venue // palace of fine arts , san francisco , ca 348 southasianbridemagazine.com



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destination CELEBRATION

photography // A lain M artinez P hotography planner + creative consultant // S on al J. S hah E vent C onsultants , LLC decor + floral + creative design // X quisite E vent P roductions video // R ay R oman F ilms hair + mua // B ridal G al M ulticultural B eauty wardrobe // L e T rend B outique rentals // E vents on the L oose lighting + staging // E voga E vent P roductions dj // DJ S uhel cake // A n a P az C akes stationar y // C eci N ew Y ork venue // L oews M iami B each H otel






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RICHA + SHASHANK ORLANDO, FL // AMITA S. PHOTOGRAPHY + OCCASIONS BY SHANGRI-LA + EVENTRICS WEDDINGS

It was a beautiful and sunny day in Clearwater Beach as Shashank and I were planning on celebrating his birthday with a nice dinner on the shore. As we walked along the sand during sunset, I thought to myself how romantic of a moment this was. When I glanced out into the distance I saw what looked like an Indian wedding taking place, with bright drapes flowing in the breeze. I turned to Shashank and said, “Wow that looks so beautiful, someone is getting married!” As we got closer, I noticed three large photos of a couple and soon realized that couple was US! I immediately turned to Shashank and saw the look in his eyes. At that moment I knew this was no longer his birthday celebration. He took my hands and proceeded with the most beautiful speech, which pinnacled with “Richa, will you marry me?” This was one of the best days of my life! Over the next year, we started planning our fairytale wedding. We were incredibly fortunate to have our families and a great group of friends to help coordinate and organize all events. They helped with planning all the details for each event and made sure that the execution exceeded our expectations. We wanted to create a different theme and unique experience for each wedding event so every detail was meticulously planned. From our custom emblem of our initials, which was displayed on various wedding materials including welcome trays, return gifts, fruit craving display, napkins, water bottles and rose petal cones, to the life-size portraits of Shashank and I which were placed throughout the hotel to guide our guests to each event, we were able to create the wedding atmosphere throughout the whole venue. Food played a large role in our wedding planning. We wanted to ensure our guests had a variety of cuisines to choose from throughout the 4-day event. This included: Gujarati, Punjabi, Thai, Italian, Mexican, South Indian and Chinese. We also had live food stations where our guests could customize their food. We had an assortment of desserts along with a life-size dhol cake at the sangeet and a 7-tier wedding cake with 6 different flavors, during the reception. Entertainment throughout the events was also important to us. A live band and singers provided truly exceptional music and interactive performances during the pithi, grah shanti, sangeet and wedding, which brought all of our events to the next level. During the reception we had stilt walkers and a chair-balancing act that left our guests speechless. Our wedding theme was regal royalty, embodying an Indian King and Queen. Our mandap was the largest Occasions by Shangri-La had ever created, at 40-feet wide with a 12-foot center golden medallion covered in an abundance of fresh flowers. Shashank had a traditional Indian style baraat with over 300 guests in attendance. There was a surprise “dance-off ” performed by my bridesmaids and Shashank’s cousins, which was led by Shashank. I made my debut entrance to place the haar on Shashank walking under a decorative red cloth, which was held by four of my bridesmaids. For the wedding ceremony entrance we had a raised catwalk aisle where Shashank entered following his groomsmen and I entered following my bridesmaids. Our reception was a starry night theme with a full LED-backdrop, which changed colors throughout the night to set the mood. Our newlywed entrance was quite the surprise grand entrance. Guests had been facing the doors as that was the way the wedding party entered so they were expecting to see us also enter from the double doors. Suddenly, the 12-foot golden medallion started turning on the stage when our entrance music began and all heads turned as Shashank and I were standing behind it and made our rotating grand entrance on the golden medallion! So memorable and really a WOW factor for our guests. This was truly a magical fairytale wedding of our dreams. We are so lucky and grateful that everything went flawlessly and exceeded our vision. To have celebrated with everyone we love meant the world to us. Our family and friends have told us our wedding is one never to be forgotten! We couldn’t agree more! southasianbridemagazine.com 357


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v e n d o r s

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SHELLY + JOHN PAUL PALM SPRINGS, CA // GLOBAL PHOTOGRAPHY + SYNX EVENTS + DESIGNS BY ASHLEY + NEETU MALHOTRA

Modern? Traditional? Whimsical? No clue? I had no idea what was in store for me. I thought, how hard planning a wedding can be? After all I had my parents on my side helping me every step of the way. Little did I know, I would be spending at least a year pondering over Pinterest and Instagram. That’s when I realized the intensity of making this event happen! My mom & I got in to wedding mode first by travelling to India. In India we were inundated with too many choices. I must have tried dozens of wedding outfits and that was just a beginning. Then there were multiple events - Mehndi, Sangeet, Haldi and many more events with my soon to be in-laws. Just trying so many outfits was overwhelming. Decisions, Decisions, Decisions! Right when I finalized my outfits, I let a sigh of relief. Then we were on to choosing wedding party outfits. I was thankful that my mom stepped in & made all the decisions for the wedding party outfits. They were the most beautiful cream and golden bridesmaid outfits I had ever seen!! The days leading up to my wedding were the most exciting ones not just for me but for my whole family. All my relatives from India came to attend my wedding. It was so nice to see my parents being with all our relatives under one roof. Each day began with laughter and ended with singing and dancing till midnight. All though wedding preparation took over my life for more than a year, it was all worth it to see my family together and so happy. Soon all the colorful affairs filled with rituals and revelry of the wedding started with the Haldi Ceremony. I wore my turmeric yellow saree and I was drenched in the yellow turmeric with every member of my family pouring turmeric and sandalwood all over my body. Before I could even recover from Haldi ceremony, next day was henna party. Which was, needless to say, a blast! All the women got henna done on their hands and men were busy dancing to the festive music. My bridal henna was breathtakingly beautiful! Then there were many more religious ceremonies before we all headed to The Westin Mission Hills & Golf Resort & Spa in Palm Springs, CA. As soon as we got to the The Westin in Palm Springs, it was GO time. My bridesmaids were ready with an agenda for me to get my hair, makeup ready for Sangeet ceremony. All the singing and dancing by my friends and family was so much fun to watch. We had no clue we were all dancing till 2 am. The concept of time did not exist not just for me but everyone on the dance floor. I had to be convinced to get some sleep, after all I was getting married in next few hours. I was to start getting my makeup done at 5 am. Shut eyes for 2 hours and I was woken up by my mom to start makeup, hair and wearing a for my wedding. On a beautiful day in December in Palm Springs, CA I got married to love of my life. The reception followed the wedding. I just glided into the reception hall with my new husband on my side, I truly was the happiest girl in the world at that moment. I felt the warmth and happiness in the reception hall as me and my husband were surrounded by our loving family and friends. When I was prepping for my wedding I was warned about the post wedding depression that would inevitably kick in after the reception was over and all the guests had left. I would have nothing new to look forward to. I would sink into a place in life with no festivities and little excitement. Nothing can be further from the truth. The wedding preparation did take over my life but now I am living a blissful married life. And above all the wedding week itself is a glowing memory that I will cherish for the rest of my life. I hope every girl can feel the way I felt on my wedding day. I was loved and cherished and I will carry that memory close to my heart for the rest of my life. southasianbridemagazine.com 363


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photographer // G lob al P hotography , Y ogi P atel planner // N eetu M alhotra wedding decor // S ynx E vents reception decor // D esigns B y A shley video // A vec L umiere makeup+hair // D olled up by L ulu henna // R achan a D esai draping // NFP E vents caterer // M anohar venue // W estin H otel , R ancho M irage southasianbridemagazine.com 367


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RADHIKA + PRIYAL GARFIELD, NJ // MEMORIES STUDIO + WEDDING DESIGN + ROSE EVENTS

Priyal and I married on our 10-year anniversary; a dream we’ve always had! We first met 12 years ago in Parsippany High School, right after I moved there. It was a moment right out of the movies. He saw me walking down the hallway. He stared at me. I stared at him. The rest is history. We were best friends for a year, eventually leading us to fall in love. We officially started dating June 2nd, 2008 and then went off to different colleges in different states. I attended Long Island University for Pharmacy, while he attended Rutgers University for business. This is when the endless commuting began every single week for the next six years from NJ to NY and NY to NJ. The best part about Priyal and I is that we both live in Parsippany, 5 minutes from each other. This has made everything effortlessly convenient. Being the oldest children in both families, it wasn’t an easy task convincing our parents to let us date without being engaged or married. We are the first generation born in the US, so it took some convincing. However, they came around when we adopted our first puppy together, Ace. Now, both the families have such a strong relationship that they don’t deem it necessary to even invite us to their hangouts. Priyal proposed to me at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco on June 25th, 2016. We were on our annual anniversary trip for year 8! He flew out our closest friends and family to California to surprise me right after he got down on his knees and proposed. It was one of the happiest moments of my life. He had the entire weekend planned, which consisted of making a trip to Napa Valley; a place I had been dying to visit! Six months later, we had an engagement party and officially became engaged through Indian rituals. The 5-day wedding festivities started with a kick off party, sangeet night, mehndi, garba, manglik prasango and fuleku, leading up to the wedding and reception at The Venetian in Garfield, NJ. The attendance was over 600 people, which is a norm for most Indian weddings! Wedding planning was very time consuming even though it was done over a span of two years. However, all the amazing vendors made the entire process facile. It was the best day of our lives with all of the people we care most about right by our side. We wouldn’t mind reliving it all over again. Our yorkie Ace has witnessed our relationship from the beginning, which is why we thought it would be perfect for him to be there on our wedding day. He became the ring bearer for his parents. Not many can say they are marrying their high school sweetheart, but we take so much pride in saying we made it! I knew he was a keeper when I first laid eyes on him 12 years ago, and here we are today; happily married. ​ southasianbridemagazine.com 369


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v e n d o r s

photographer + video // M emories S tudio planner // R ose E vents decor // W edding D esign , R avi V erma makeup+hair // S tyle by S usmita dj , dhol & baraat van // MVP DJ' s reception dj // J ay D abhi lighting + effect // M agic M oments LED // G roove NY catering // M oghul cake // A L it tle B akery horses // E cho L ake S tables bride's garba and wedding outfit // S abyasachi bride's reception outfit // M anish M alhotra venue // T he V enetian southasianbridemagazine.com 373


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RAQS

concept + ar t direction + photography // A li K P hotography @ alikphotographyca mua // N ilo H aq @ nilohaq hair // DMG designz _ dress // N az F ashion B ug @ n azfashionbug jewelr y // P recious B y M aira @ preciousbymaira instruments // D hol T oronto @ dholtoronto & H ouse of R aaga


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s t y l e d s h o o t

you are my

SUNSHINE

photography // A kb ar S ayed P hotography , @ akb arsayedphotography coordination // P reeti E xclusive , @P reetiexclusive decor // T he M oment E vents , @T hemomentevents mua + hair // G low by H erneet , @G lowbyherneet clothing // M iri NYC, @M irinyc model // M onica S ingh , @M onicasingh _ jewelr y, outdoor // T anzila R ab , @ tanzila _ rab _ designs jewelr y, indoor // S ooha R ang , @S ooha _R ang


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spring

SOIRÉE


photography //A rpit M ehta of V isuals by A rpit , visualsbyarpit ) concept + design + flowers + decor // S aadia K ibriya of K ismet E vents , @ hellokismet clothing + jewelr y // B.H.K azimov , @ bhkazimov mua + hair // N adia A li of H enn a D il S e , @H enn adilse linens // C reative C overings , @ creativecoverings

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LOTUSBLOOMOFFICIAL@GMAIL.COM

(917) 388-2144 | (416) 885-6505


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