After a year and a half of wedding planning, our wedding weekends came and went in the blink of an eye. It’s crazy how much work was involved in the planning process and how quickly the night flew by. James and I had a modern fusion wedding, incorporating all of the traditional aspects of our cultures and religions. It was both a colorful and elegant affair. We tried our  best to keep things as traditional as possible but also made sure to include a lot of modern themes.

Our first wedding weekend included a henna night, performances of traditional Indian dances, Maticoor Night, Tassa drums and more. All of these events led up to our first wedding ceremony at The Akbar in Garden City, New York for our Hindu wedding. James and I wore custom made, traditional Indian wedding attire adorned in crystals and beads, James also customized his turban himself. For these outfits we were super picky, and even had a few instances where we changed our minds on what we wanted to wear. In the end we were both happy with the way it all came together, I guess its best to always trust your gut instinct.  For James’ entrance he arrived in a white Porshe, greeted by all our guests dancing as he exited the car. My entrance on the other hand was a bit more traditional, a group of dancers led the way as I was carried out by James’ groomsmen and older brother, with my bridesmaids following behind holding candles. The bridal party matched in purple and pink sarees and kurta’s handpicked by James and I. After the two hour ceremony, guests were allowed to shower us with flower petals signifying their well wishes for a happy married life. This was followed up with a few minutes of non-stop tassa dancing (which is a workout by itself when you’re wearing an outfit that’s almost ten pounds) and food of course!

Our Christian Ceremony and reception was held at Chateau Briand in Garden City, New York. This entire event was planned and executed by James and I, mainly because we wanted everything down to the T of what we envisioned it to be. It was filled with personal touches and DIY’s made by the both of us with the help of our bridal party. We had personalized programs, flower petal holders, glow sticks, a kid’s station filled with coloring books, crayons and flash tattoos (to keep the kids entertained) and flip flops so guests could change their shoes if the dancing got too tiresome. For our escort cards one of my bridesmaids hand wrote every card with calligraphy. The cards were placed on top of custom champagne glasses we had made as wedding favors. Out of everything, my favorite detail was our flower wall, (I’ve been obsessed with them since Kimye’s wedding).  For this event I wore a beautiful Eve of Milady mermaid wedding gown with a sheer lace back from Kleinfeld’s (every girl’s dream!). James being the fashion savvy guy that he is had two outfits, a ceremony outfit and a party outfit. I just stuck to my wedding dress because I knew i’d only get to wear it once in a lifetime.  All the hard work did indeed pay off because the night went exactly as we had planned. When people ask if there’s anything we would have done differently I usually never have anything to say. Everything was just as we had imagined it to be and more, there’s not one thing that I think I would have wanted to change except for the fact that I didn’t eat all the delicious food the venue offered! The guests were given ten options of entree’s to choose from and James and I were given all ten entrees each! I’m a foodie, so thinking back on it I wish I ate more. We used to go to the Bridal Showcases at the venue just to eat all the yummy food LOL! I think its important to just take in as much as you can on the day OF, because it only comes once. The stress can literally make you feel like you’re in a room full of fire but just take a shot and relax (our Maitre d’ would often pop up out of nowhere and just hand me a drink lol). I don’t handle stress well and its usually written on my face, so this helped a lot. Looking back at it all I cant  help but smile though. One of the sweetest images that I cant seem to get out of my head is when James teared up during his speech during our Hindu ceremony and also when he was saying his vows during the Christian ceremony, I on the other hand didn’t cry at all, shocking many lol. For anyone who knows us they know i’m usually the emotional one and James is the man of few words, so it was nice to see the roles reversed.

When it comes to wedding planning one thing i’d suggest every bride to do is…do what makes YOU happy. Pick the dress, choose the color, wear the shoes. Do what makes you content. It’s only going to happen once and when everything’s said and done, you don’t want to have any of those “I wish I did this” moments. I’m glad James and I focused on our wants and vision for both events because at the end of the day its about the bride and the groom. Even when it came down to our first dance, we choose to go with what WE wanted. We couldn’t decide on a song and chose to just wing it the night before. We picked Ed-Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud”  and mixed it with Drake’s “One Dance”, it wasn’t your traditional first dance routine to say the least.  It’s also extremely important to understand the difference between the things you WANT and the things you NEED, budgeting ourselves was one of the hardest tasks through this process, mainly because the first things I’d be drawn to would usually be the most expensive thing in the room. We picked and chose between which details were necessary and which were a stretch and i’m happy with the choices we made. Florals and photography took up the most of our budget aside from our outfits. If anyone knows me they know I LOVE photos, so of course that would be a priority for me, I even had a photo shoot of me eating Popeyes in my wedding dress lol!

One of the best memories through this whole experience was also being able to share our journey as a Coordinated Bride Guest Blogger, it’s something i’ll always be able to look back at and say hey I DID THAT! Being a bridal blogger helped me put into words the many emotions that you go through while wedding planning but don’t often get to say out loud. It’s also comforting to hear that other brides are dealing with similar things as you are, because who would understand the stress of a wedding better than another bride?  I’m even happier to have been chosen to be an editor for The Coordinated Bride blog and to be on Team TCB! I LOVE, love, and being able to read about and hear about everyone’s special day makes it all the more fun. I cant wait to help create and collaborate with new bride-to-be’s, learn about new vendors and simply engulf myself in all things wedding all over again. I also look forward to introducing a lot wedding aspects that are incorporated within my culture as well. It’s going to be a fun ride!

Thanks you for following our journey! Check out these wonderful images captured by Max Photo NY!

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Vendor Collaboration

Photographer: Max Photo NY | Wedding Dress: Kleinfeld Bridal

Venue: The Akbar | Chateau Briand

Florist: Stylish Events NY 

Cake : Francesco’s Italian American Bakery |Cakes By Kimmy

MUA: Beauty By Tamanna

Music: DJ Rah Rah / NY Event Productions