Wow! There has been no shortage of Indian weddings out of New Jersey! Today’s Indian wedding is unique in that the bride and groom were their very own wedding coordinators and planned everything surrounding their contemporary fusion events based on what they loved as a couple. The multiple set of events resulted in authentic family vibes, great food and lasting memories caught on camera by Pandya Photography. We are not surprised one bit that another lavish Indian soiree was held at the prestigious Merion and we can’t wait to divulge all the unique details of Maharani Aekta and Amit’s intermixture event! Aekta’s background is Gujarati and Jain and the couple began their commencements in a traditional Indian ceremony in the Skylight Ballroom of the Merion. Aekta’s breathtaking mehndi by Mehndi by Anuja completed her bridal look for her numerous events. The bride was a classic beauty for her big day with kaajal rimmed eyes and bold, crimson red lips garnished by Cinderella Bridez. Maharaja Amit and his troupe arrived to the venue in style with a horse led percussion from Echo Lake Stables and dhol beats from MVPDJs! No Indian wedding is complete without the perfect Indian mandap and Wedding Design flawlessly designed a traditional mandap in rich colors of golds and red combined with glittering curtains and an ivory white backdrop. Head into the gallery where there are plenty more pics! The bride and groom chatted with Maharani Weddings on the details surrounding planning their perfect fusion wedding down below!
Our big day was a long time coming. Aekta and I have been friends for a long time (more than 11 years) and both we and our friends viewed our wedding as both the culmination of a great friendship and the beginning of a new life together. Our planning started with the Save-the-date card. I was able to design the card myself to look like a movie poster. Everyone loved it and we continued the movie theme at our reception.
Early on Aekta and I decided that we would plan the wedding on our own with our families rather than hire a planner/coordinator. We felt that it was important to have our personal touch on all aspects of our big day and are very happy with how everything turned out.
From the start we wanted to make sure that our wedding represented both our culture while I am Telugu and Catholic. During the Gujarati Garba, my family was able to perform a Telugu ceremony called Pradhanam. This Telangana tradition involves the women of the groom's family going to the bride's house to invite her for the marriage ceremony. They present gifts and saris to Aekta at the Garba before we proceed to the garba and raas.
Aekta and I along with our immediate families worked together for or all the planning and negotiations that involved the venue, caterer, and decorator. In this process of visiting these vendors and regularly meeting to make decisions, our families were able to become better antiquated and become closer.
For the wedding itself, it was decided to perform both Jain and Catholic ceremonies on one day. We did not want to ask our guests to come to two ceremonies on two different days, so early on we made the decision to keep both ceremonies and the reception on one day. This required us to make sure our planning was accurate and precise, while still factoring in time for any possible delays. Aekta and I created an elaborate master schedule and distributed/reviewed it it all the vendors and bridesmaids/groomsmen. In the end, we had a baraat, two ceremonies, and a reception (with three wardrobe changes) all on one day and we can honestly say we enjoyed every minute of it.
The Catholic ceremony happened in the new East Garden of the Merion. The deacon from my family's church performed the ceremony and his homily included a beautiful message about love and companionship that all of our guests praised for its universal meaning. We even included a unity candle lighting and a blessing with a statue of Mary, which are staples of a Catholic marriage ceremony in India.
For our reception, Aekta and I wanted to add a personal touch to the decorations. We are both big fans of Bollywood movies and decided to add a few things to reflect this, just like how our Save-the-Date card was made to look like a movie poster. I designed the place cards to look like movie tickets and every table card included a Bollywood movie poster next to the table number. Each of the 35 tables had a different poster on it and they were all movies that we had seen together. We made our hashtag in big marquee letters like a movie title, and I even created a backdrop like a red carpet entrance.
With all these elements put together, we believe that "Contemporary Fusion" best describes our wedding. Many of our guests mentioned how it was beautiful to see all the Gujarati and Telugu cultures along with Jain and Catholic traditions in one day along with all the small Bollywood touches we added to our reception.
We will be returning for the outdoor ceremony in the East Garden of the Merion! See you then!