Sanjana Rishi, Content Creator, Lawyer & Founder of Nindia Loungewear
“I had a micro-wedding; there was no sangeet or mehendi, just our wedding day. With the pandemic restrictions upon us last year, we hosted a 12-people wedding in my husband’s backyard, and there was no need for a new outfit. So, I wore a vintage pant-suit from Gianfranco Ferré (that I had bought earlier) with a Torani dupatta as a veil (that was added two days before the wedding). With this, I wore jewellery from Anu Merton. This was a controversial look for those accustomed to traditional Indian bridalwear, and I received a mixed bag of reactions. With a little distance and perspective, none of those opinions matters now. The only opinions I will carry with me forever are my own and those of my husband. I believe that one shouldn’t be forced or shamed into wearing something you don’t want to on your wedding day.”
Aastha Sharma, Celebrity Stylist & Entrepreneur
“I always wanted to wear orange and yellow for my wedding, rather than the traditional red. At the combined mehendi and sangeet sundowner, I wore a one-shoulder, embroidered cropped top and flared pants by Nikhil Thampi, and I was so comfortable in it. It was an elegant yet easy style, which left me free to dance the night away. I felt confident about my look, and all my guests appreciated that. In fact, I even received many texts from other brides who were inspired by my decision. My advice is to follow your heart and wear what you wish to, for your special day. Make sure you are comfortable and everything will fall in place.”
Ayesha Amin Nigam, Creative Director & Fashion Stylist
“I was clear from the beginning that I won't buy anything that I can't repeat later. And, that I won't wear anything ‘heavy’. So, for my wedding day, I wore a white bodysuit with an organza skirt and slipped into a pair of wide-legged pants for the sundowner reception. [Designer] Gaurav Gupta and I designed the style together, and he suggested we add a cape to the second look to complete it. So, I had a five-part wedding outfit: a bodysuit, skirt, pants, cape, and a veil...all of which I can use separately! It took me a few months to get the piece together, as not many designers create white wedding gowns. I finally sat down one evening with Gaurav, and we decided everything in one go! I knew from his sketches and our ideas that the result would be exactly as I had envisioned. I was showered with compliments for how different it was. My advice is to select a design that is not fussy and won’t bother you as these things have a way of affecting one’s mood.”
Kaabia Grewal Shah, Co-Founder, Outhouse Jewellery
“I had a clear vision of what I wanted my wedding celebrations to be like...a three-day-long extravaganza in Phu Quoc, Vietnam, where each function truly defined my husband’s and my strong personalities. We decided to keep it experimental, flamboyant, and artistic. The first function was the Mad Mansion Party, for which I wore a custom-made gown and cape by Amit Aggarwal. With it, I wore an elaborate ear cuff that my sister Sasha and I designed, featuring 780 semi-precious tourmalines and over 2,000 Swarovski crystals. We also created a body harness for this look, which had 10,000 crystals. For our mehendi celebrations, we hosted a ‘Le Hoi’ party by the beach, which means carnival in Vietnamese. We had already held a small ceremony for my traditional henna party, so our guests got face painting and white henna patterns applied to their hands at this party. I truly enjoy Afro-tribal culture and shared my ideas with our friends and designers Shivan & Narresh. They stitched a bamboo frame onto the blouse to accentuate my look, and it came together wonderfully. Finally, for my wedding, I wore a custom-made, ecrucoloured lehenga by Shivan & Narresh that featured their signature carnation skein work and pearls. Even today, people tell me how unique our wedding was, that it was more like a three-day-long festival. I would advise other brides to wear what is the truest representation of themselves. The devil is in the details, so I knew my wedding had to be perfect to the T.”
Preyal Dewani, Founder of Handpicked Society
“My partner Dani and I were both sure that we didn't want our wedding outfit to be too traditional...we didn’t want it to look like a costume, and we definitely wanted to be able to wear them again. Comfort was also important, and the styles had to represent our personalities while being rooted in Indian design and craft. Both of us have rather busy jobs and we were planning the wedding ourselves. We didn’t have time to travel to India and found that the team at Rani by Raja was the ideal bridge between the team at Payal Singhal in India and us. We looked at pieces to see how we could tailor them to our vision, and even made sure we had pockets for make-up and phones! Being yourself on your wedding day is incredibly important. Clothes are such a strong representation of identity, why use someone else’s idea of what you should look like on such an important day? Enjoy yourself, and enjoy moments with the guests who have taken the time to celebrate with you."
Hanna S Khan, Luxury, Fashion & Lifestyle Influencer
“For our reception, I wore a rose-gold, Elie Saab Couture bridal gown that Mr Saab custom-made for me. It had a 20-metres circumference and was a masterpiece of construction. Ever since I was a young girl, I have been following fashion weeks and waited for the showstopper look to be revealed. My reception outfit, for me, had to be that ‘grand finale’ look that would leave people spellbound. I received many compliments from those who appreciate couture creations, and I was also mindful not to wear jewellery that could overpower the style. For the mehendi, I wore a palazzo-like sharara and cape blouse designed by my sister, Ohaila Khan. The design took inspiration from an Art Deco, lace parasol, and it struck a balance between elegance and fierceness, which matches my personality and style sensibility. I chose to wear red to the mehendi, rather than orange, which was a departure from tradition. My friends and family thought my outfit was a refreshing change. It upsets me to see brides looking like clones, and I would advise brides-to-be to select an outfit that suits their personality."
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