Let's get ready to enjoy Annapurna & Madhav's intimate wedding in today's Platinum Guide Blog!
How did you meet your Groom and when did you know he was "the one"?
I had just graduated nursing school, with a world of opportunities at my feet. My sister, Srivi, and I decided to go down to California for a few days to kick back, relax, and celebrate this huge accomplishment. We stayed with some friends and while we were there met various people but didn't think much of it. It was a pretty uneventful trip, and we joked about how crazy it would be if we met the person we were going to marry on that trip. We both thought there was absolutely no way that would happen. Oh how wrong were we. The last day we were there, we met Madhav's parents through some mutual family friends. Soon enough, Madhav and I were introduced and started talking and the rest, as they say, is history. A few texts every so often turned to daily phone calls and FaceTime dates. Some words exchanged here and there quickly turned into conversations about life, our goals and dreams, plans for the future, our hardships and struggles, our successes, and what makes us who we are today. Every minute I spent with him felt natural and real, like we had known each other our entire lives. We quickly became best friends and realized that we couldn't spend our lives without each other.
Share the scoop on your Proposal Story!
As much as I hate surprises, one thing I have dreamed about since I was 10 years old was my dream surprise proposal. Madhav was planning to come into town to visit, and we had made plans to go see Hamilton in Detroit, since it was one of his all time favorite musicals. What I didn't know was that he was planning to propose that night, and that his sister, brother-in-law, and parents all flew on the same red eye flight as him to be there for the surprise happening later that evening and hid in the airport until after I picked him up to leave. Madhav had made a huge deal about the show, saying we should go full out with getting dressed up, having my hair and nails done, and just getting all decked out for the show. I thought it was fun how excited he was about the whole thing and went along with it because who doesn't love getting dressed up? We got to the venue and were taking pictures and having a great time. While the show was amazing, Madhav was acting super strange throughout. He would scoot me to walk in front of him so I wasn't directly beside him and wouldn't look at or talk to me during the course of the show. Naturally, I just assumed he was just so mesmerized by the show, even when he was shady and left me alone for a few after the show, which I later found out was to make some calls. What I also didn't realize was that during the show, my sisters and family had ventured to a beautiful local park where they created an ideal scene for the perfect proposal. Usually I like to know the entire plan of the day and was getting antsy that I didn't know what we were doing after the show, but I was attempting to be less uptight about plans and trying to play it cool, even when he randomly suggested that we go to "the park you always went to as a kid" to take some pictures. When we got to the park, I started telling Madhav tons of stories from my childhood that happened in that park, completely oblivious to the fact that he was very clearly not paying attention. As we were walking, he randomly pointed to a tree, which i soon realized was covered in lights and pictures of us throughout our lives. Immediately, I knew what was happening. Madhav made a nice speech and popped the question with a stealthy photographer capturing the whole thing. All parents and siblings joined in to finish the surprise and capped off this special day with a delicious dinner!
Tell us how you went about planning your wedding, and your overall experience with the Venues, Hair & Makeup, Outfits, Decor Theme, and all of the other important details.
Before COVID-19 hit, I had pretty much our entire wedding planned by the beginning of 2020. I love weddings and knew pretty much exactly what I wanted my wedding to look like and which vendors I wanted to go with well before Madhav even proposed. Because it was important to us to have a pretty traditional and religious wedding ceremony, both of our parents were able to help communicate with the temple facilities and the priest in making that all possible. I had been following the Indian wedding circuit in the Metro Detroit area for a while now so when it came time to book hair, make up, photography, etc., I basically knew exactly who and what I wanted so I had most of our vendors booked within a few weeks after we got engaged. Booking all these venues and vendors early on in the wedding planning process eased a lot of my stress as we moved forward. All our vendors were incredible in being flexible and helping us make our day incredible, especially with the date changes and uncertainty that COVID-19 brought with it. If it weren't for these amazing vendors, our day wouldn't have been as wonderful as it was.
How did you select your bridal lengha or wedding dress? Did you have a favorite color in mind?
We chose to have a traditional Hindu Telugu wedding ceremony, and so I relied on my parents and in- laws a lot for help picking the clothes I would wear for all the traditional ceremonies. My mom and I met my in-laws in India, and we traveled to Kanchi, where I ended up picking the sari I wore for the first half of our wedding. Before COVID, I had found the most beautiful purple lengha in Hyderabad but it was too grand for the backyard reception we ended up having because of COVID. So I decided to wear this elegant periwinkle chikaankari lengha that I got stitched in India with the help of my cousin.
What was the most enjoyable part of the planning process, and why?
Although COVID-19 significantly altered our original plans of big venues with large crowds, with the amazing help of our closest family and friends, we were able to share something really special. Being able to turn my childhood home into a dream backyard wedding venue was incredible. We shared so many laughs and DIY moments together, and these are memories I'll carry with me for the rest of my life.
What did your guests particularly love about your Wedding?
We recognize that any sort of gathering in 2020 raises eyebrows and I think the one thing that guests loved about our wedding was the care we took in making sure everyone was able to stay safe. We had a temperature screening station where all guests had to be screened for COVID symptoms prior to entering the events, provided masks for all our guests, had hand sanitizer stations everywhere, placed chairs at safe distances from each other, and had CDC guidelines posted throughout the wedding. Also, because of COVID-19 guidelines, we had a more intimate, outdoor wedding that guests said they loved.
Was there a really special moment in your wedding that constantly replays in your mind?
The two moments that still constantly play in my head are when I was carried to the madapam by my maternal uncles while sitting in a basket. It was such a cool feeling being surrounded by so many of my favorite people who I had known my entire life. The other moment was when the curtain separating Madhav and I was lifted and we got to see each other for the first time during the muhurtham. It was so surreal seeing each other and knowing we were going to be together forever.
For events other than your ceremony, please tell us as much as you would like about the decor, style, dances, and all the special details.
The theme for all the wedding events was simple but elegant, as all the events took place at my parents home. For the pre-wedding ceremonies that were more religious based, we tried to keep the decoration and outfits as traditional as possible. The decorations for our backyard reception were simple, with fairy lights illuminating all the trees and connecting the different tents spread out together. While our mandapam was rented and assembled by the kind folks at Marigold Weddings, the remainder of the decorations were a labor of love from close family and friends.
Do you have any words of wisdom for Brides-To-Be?
In a world where everything is changing, sometimes you don't need a huge wedding with hundreds of people for your event to be special. Find the things that are most important to you and your fiance and focus your energy on that. No matter what, the day will always be special because it's your day. So try to find joy in all aspects of making it happen.
Anything else you want to tell us? We'd love to hear all about your other details! (jewelry, mehndi, venue, cake, bouquets, etc.)
Because COVID-19 prevented so many of our closest friends and families from attending, we livestreamed all our events so those who were not able to attend in person could be a part of our celebrations from the safety of their homes.