“Where there is love, there is light.” This expression has been spinning in my head as I started to revel through all the images captured by Emily Crall Photography of Maharani Melanie and Dan's fusion Indian wedding. This doting story can only be serialized as romantic and whimsical, so come with us darlings, as we divulge into all the details. Just like all other weddings, a fusion wedding is full to the brim with rituals and traditions. Melanie knew the importance of fusing her family's background from Chennai into her big day. She opted for an elegant bridal look that channeled a South Indian bride; a raw silk red and gold saree with complimenting gold jewelry and a long braid infused with fresh flowers. With hair styled by Eden Salon and subtle makeup emphasizing bold, red lips by Susie Morales, this bride flawlessly executed her dream look. The outdoor Indian ceremony was charming and exquisite, accented with my favorite spirit animal - elephants. With bold floral, a unique mandap and a setup that was just as exhilarating as the bride, Adam Covington Signature Studio certainly knew their way behind a pair of shiny shears. The garden at The Celebration Farm is the perfect outdoor area for a fusion event and it was a beautiful day in Iowa City which made for the photos captured by Emily Crall Photography that much more enchanting. Coordinator for this fusion event was spearheaded by LOLA Event Productions and you can find all the images floating in the gallery! Special treat from the bride down below!
Share the scoop on your Proposal Story!
I was so excited. I had seen a couple of months ago that Once, a movie I loved, had been made into a Broadway show and it was coming to the Kennedy Center in DC. I had asked my then-boyfriend, Dan, if he'd like to go with me and he said a casual "Sure!" Since then, though, I had forgotten all about it and started planning other things to do for the summer. Then, out of nowhere, Dan said nonchalantly he had gotten tickets for the show and I was pleasantly surprised and so glad he had remembered.
We had a chance to relax and get a drink before the theater doors were opened so we enjoyed sitting at the outside terrace of Kennedy Center. It was a comfortably warm, summer evening and it was perfect.
I've always tried to catch celestial happenings when I could and I had heard earlier in the week that the Perseid Meteor shower was going to happen and the East Coast had the perfect skies for it. I had told Dan we should try and see them after the show. As we walked out, Dan said "Hey, want to check out those meteors??" But, I was tired after a long day and said we really didn't have to even though I had mentioned it. Needless to say, Dan insisted and I agreed thinking it was a good opportunity after all and I really shouldn't miss it.
Dan said the National Mall would be a perfect place to see them so we parked and walked towards the Lincoln Memorial. In between each column, we peered out, looking to see if we saw anything until we got to the last column and then my right hand is taken and I'm swiveled around and Dan is on one knee!
I gasp and my head is kind of dizzy and I'm processing what is happening. But when I hear "Will you marry me?" I said "Yes!" and it was the most perfect moment. After a few minutes, Dan points out in the dark in front of us and I see one of our friends had been there taking pictures! I thought I had seen a familiar figure but was distracted just in time. I could not stop smiling or laughing and was truly in a daze. I could not be more happy, excited, and how the heck did you do this surprised and it was great. Still is!
How did you select your bridal lengha or wedding dress? Did you have a favorite color in mind?
I always knew I loved the classic South Indian bride look being our family is originally from Chennai, Tamil Nadu. I wanted to wear a red and gold sari with all the traditional temple jewelry and found a picture beautifully capturing that and showed this to one of my bridesmaids, Mira Bedi, who also owns a boutique and was helping me with all the outfits for the wedding. Using these ideas, we found the perfect look!
What was the most enjoyable part of the planning process, and why?
One of my favorite parts of the planning process was settling in with my iPad and noting all the ideas I've had in my head as I've dreamt of my wedding day. I had envisioned so many details such as the floral elephants, the colorful drapery and flowers, the wands adorned with bells to wave as we celebrated our pronouncement of husband and wife. I was very happy I was able to take what I was wishing for and put it together with my great vendors. It was worth all the hours because the day was perfect and so beautiful and exactly how I had pictured it! The photos capture the colors, greenery and whimsy I wanted for the special day.
What did your guests particularly love about your Wedding?
The most important thing to Dan and I was to make the entire wedding weekend an extension of our personalities. Down to the decor, the ceremony details, the outfits, the food and drink, and the music, we had a big hand in it all to make it as personal as possible. We wanted an explosion of color wherever we and our guests looked which was exactly what the day turned out with the beautiful flowers, lights and amazingly colorful Indian outfits we all wore. Since this was a fusion wedding, we wanted a mix of American and Indian culture, so we offered both cuisines at our reception so everyone could enjoy their familiar foods but also try something new! Dan and I have a common love of dancing and so we knew we wanted that to be a major part of our reception and so we mixed some Bollywood in with all of our favorite songs. Dan and I brainstormed to make it all lively, colorful and most importantly really represent us! Our family and friends told us they loved all the personal touches which made it all the more special for us!
Was there a really special moment in your wedding that constantly replays in your mind?
Before our wedding, we held a Mendhi Karaoke night after our rehearsal dinner and our closest friends and family took the "stage" with Dan and I to belt out all of our favorite classics. It was such a memorable way to kick off the wedding festivities and the hilarity that ensued still is one of our favorite things to re-collect and laugh over. Since our wedding was a fusion wedding, I wanted all of our friends and family to have a chance to have mendhi designs on their hands since it is such a beautiful custom of Hindu weddings. My friends running up to show me the fun art they had gotten done is a great memory I have!
Do you have any words of wisdom for Brides-To-Be?
Always remember that "Where there is Love, there is Life"
Return back for the couple's rocking reception with Creative Sounds on the turntables! See you in a bit!