Colourful Traditional Sikh Wedding

Sapna & Sundeep

Snapshot

Sapna and Sundeep’s colorful Sikh wedding in Sydney was a reflection of their personalities, passions, and love for each other. The intimate Sangeet kicked off the celebrations with plenty of singing, dancing, and performances by close friends. Sapna and Sundeep tied their personal story to every aspect of the celebrations with the beautifully spiritual and symbolic Wedding Ceremony taking place at Gurdwara Sahib Glenwood, where the couple first met and where Sundeep proposed.

The regal ceremony included an entourage of the blue and red bridal party and Sapna in a beautiful pinkish-orange anarkali. We especially loved the rustic post-wedding photoshoot where the bridal party ventured out to Rouse Hill House & Farm for some fun shots that incorporated various aspects of their personalities. Sundeep’s love for cars and bikes had a special place within the wedding celebrations. From arriving in an impressive fleet of Fords for their Wedding Ceremony to a crowd-pleasing entrance at their Wedding Reception in a Classic Chrome 2013 Royal Enfield Bullet, the couple’s events oozed fun and personality throughout.

Sapna shares all the details of her wedding with us and provides some very insightful tips for brides to be.

About The Couple

How we met

Sundeep and I first met at the Sikh Youth Australia’s Annual Camp in 2006. We shared a very long embrace in front of Glenwood Gurudwara Sahib (Sikh Temple) after the camp ended and from then on we became MSN buddies and eventually best friends. I remember telling Sundeep that I really liked him, however it didn’t work out at the time. We remained friends for a while but I still had feelings for him and so we decided it was best to go our seperate ways. We then reconnected three years later at a mutual friend’s wedding in early 2014 and discovered that our journey’s had been quite similar in that time. We started dating soon after, and the rest was destiny.

How we are as a couple

We are different in many ways, but the same in many more. We balance each other out, which gives us a feeling of stillness when we are together.

How he proposed

Sundeep is not the kind of guy to get down on one knee and propose, so I never expected anything of the sort. However, he still did manage to take me by surprise. He asked me to meet at the place we first met, and because we go there on a regular basis, there was no cause for suspicion. We were sitting on the very same bench as our first meeting and I was talking away whilst he was quiet, and mid-conversation he took out the ring from his pocket and I was left speechless.

The engagement ring

The ring is a square tycoon cut and can be mistaken for a princess cut. The tycoon cut is an exclusive cut to Gregory Jewellers.

What marriage means to us

Marriage to us is a spiritual union of love and devotion; it is the unification of two parallel journeys into one.

The Details

Wedding Planning

PLANNING: Wedding planning took us around seven months. Given the tight schedule, we had to prioritize what was most important to us. I remember securing hair, makeup, and mehendi artists as soon as I knew the dates of my events because it is so hard to get the Pros you want with such little time! It is so imperative that you delegate tasks to your family and close friends. We were very lucky to have our parents help out with the planning.

SHOPPING: All of my wedding shopping was done in Chandigarh and Ludhiana, with the exception of my Pre-Wedding Shoot and Reception outfits. My father and I went to India and the shopping was completed within a week. Shopping in India was an eye-opening experience. Sundeep’s outfits were all locally sourced from Sydney.

PHOTOGRAPHY & CINEMATOGRAPHY: We chose to go with Expert Photography as we really liked the work portrayed on their website. We wanted a fresh perspective on a Sikh Wedding and as this was their first Indian wedding, they provided just that. We used Expert photography’s cinematography service, K Light and Motion and were really impressed with the same day edit as it was so different, and probably one of the best we have ever seen. We just keep watching it, even till date!

INVITATIONS: For the Save The Date card, we used a photo from a shoot a dear friend did for us and was put together with a close high school friend Priyanka Kaul. The same image from the Save the Date card was used as the cover of our wedding card printed by Malhotra Paper Mart.

Wedding Events

Our wedding was held over five days in September 2015:

  1. Sangeet – Saturday PM, West West Pennant Hills Valley Community Centre, 80 guests.
  2. Mehendi – Thursday PM, Bride’s Home, 30 guests.
  3. Maiyaan and Chuda – Friday AM, Bride’s Home, 20 guests.
  4. Wedding Ceremony – Saturday AM, Gurdwara Sahib Glenwood, 400 guests.
  5. Wedding Reception – Sunday PM, WaterView Bicentennial Park, 250 guests.

Pre Wedding Shoot

SAPNA’S OUTFIT: I love the pastel colors in Anushree Reddy’s designs and ordered a mint green and pink anarkali gown from her 2014 collection via Jiva Couture. This is a great place to order designer outfits if you cannot make it to India.

Sangeet

We themed our Sangeet ‘Punjab’ as we wanted something that paid homage to our roots. I wanted the Sangeet to be a stress-free, casual event with all my nearest and dearest present. It was filled with Punjabi folk dances, Bollywood, boliyaan and endless dancing throughout the whole night! We had two performances, one from my closest university friends and the other was from my friends from Punjabi school/Sikh camp, who I used to perform with. Guests were served Indian food catered by Shandar Tandoori Indian. We had a live dhol by Reji Singh of Ministry of Bhangra and music by Platinum Dholis.

DECOR: Phulkari dupattas were hung on the wall and we had Punjabi musical instruments and paraphernalia (Dhol, dumroo / tumbis / hockey sticks, etc) organized by Decor-A-Shaan.

SAPNA’S OUTFIT: I really wanted to wear different styles of outfits for all the wedding events. For the Sangeet, I opted for a traditional Punjabi suit with a patiala salwar from Poshak Bazaar in Chandigarh. My outfit was inspired by the Bollywood film ‘Tanu Weds Manu’ which fitted perfectly with the Sangeet theme of bright, vibrant colours. It was comfortable and lightweight so I could easily dance the night away.

JEWELLERY: Jhumkas from Anjali Jain from Exclusively and bangles and jhumar from a local boutique in Chandigarh.

ACCESSORIES: Parandhi (hair extension) from 1469, Chandigarh.

SHOES:  Coral Jutties from Needledust.

HAIR & MAKEUP: Hair and Makeup by SanaSana did an amazing job with styling my hair traditionally with a parandhi, and giving me a soft and natural makeup look. Initially, I was going to go for a maang tika but Sana had suggested going for the side jhumar which I loved.

SUNDEEP’S OUTFIT: Chequered parna (style of turban) and a classic black kurta with a beige lohi (shawl). He paired these with traditional Punjabi jutti.

Mehendi

The Mehendi was a casual and intimate event. I had all my close girlfriends over to get their mehndi done and Sundeep also came over with his extended family.  In-house catering.

DECOR: The theme for the event was ‘colours’. So we decorated the house with colourful flowers. We had an Instagram collage on the wall and pink floral arrangements on the staircase. Organized by Decor-A-Shaan.

SAPNA’S OUTFIT: Since I wore vibrant and loud colours for all my other functions, I opted with a black and yellow salwar suit for the Mehendi. A salwar suit was the most comfortable for the event and I came across this particular one on Pinterest. I really liked it because the color combination was rare. I contacted the designer, Simple Kaur from Chandigarh and she was miraculously able to stitch the suit and send it to me within 2 weeks!

JEWELLERY: I wore maang tika and earrings from Sitara Jewels.

HAIR & MAKEUP: I got my hair blow-dried at a local hairdresser and my makeup was done by Fareha Bridal Studio.

HENNA ARTIST: Fareha Bridal Studio.

Wedding Ceremony

My day started at 3 am with Fareha coming over to style me. The ceremony was held at our local Gurdwara, which was special to us because it is where Sundeep and I first met. The Anand Kaaraj (Sikh Wedding) Ceremony was held in the morning and the baraat arrived at 9 am and commenced with the “No money, no bride” bargaining between the groomsmen and bridesmaids.

The Milni was at 9:30 am between both families, followed by breakfast and Anand Kaaraj (Sikh wedding ceremony), which commenced at 10:30 am and went for about an hour and a half. I walked down the aisle to Bullet by Kay-V Singh ft. Mickey Singh. Lunch was catered in-house by the Gurdwara and then we had the post-wedding shoot at Rouse Hill Farm. We headed home after a long day for the doli.

Ceremony Decor & Unique Details

DECOR: We had a royal-themed event. Decor-A-Shaan did the decor at the Gurdwara and Monika Sharma from Flowers & Weddings made the bridal bouquet.

UNIQUE DETAILS:

  • Sundeep’s symbolic entrance: Sundeep was one of 5 Singhs to walk in. The 4 Singhs that accompanied him were all dressed in traditional bana (traditional Sikh attire) which personified the Punj Pyaare, known as the five beloved ones. This is the name collectively given by our tenth Master, Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji. Along with them was a sea of navy blue and red – the groomsmen. The whole entourage was royal.
  • Wedding transportation: Sundeep wanted a full fleet of classic Ford Falcons from the ’60s and 70’s to be the transportation for the wedding day. Sundeep had his Polar White 1967 Ford XR Falcon 500 Wagon, Candy Apple Red 1969 Ford XT Falcon GT and his father’s Polar White 1970 Ford XW Fairmont GS along with his ultimate dream car, an original unrestored multiple trophy-winning Vermillion Fire 1971 Ford XY Falcon GTHO Phase 3 which was owned by his close friend.
  • The CeremonyIt was unbelievable how quickly this went. There were so many beautiful moments, from entering the Gurdwara Sahib with my father, the Palla ceremony which signifies my father giving me a way to Sundeep, the completion of the Laavan, which meant that Sundeep and I were married and our spiritual union with God. I went through all sorts of feelings and have no words to describe how beautiful this ceremony is.
  • Post-wedding photoshoot: The groomsmen changed into traditional Punjabi attire for the photoshoot, and also had props, such as hockey sticks and Punjabi folk musical instruments. The bridal party wore white wayfarers and novelty Venetian sunglasses. Sundeep loves his military history and Punjab, so it was a no-brainer for him to have two World War II Jeeps at the photo shoot, along with a Battle Green 2015 Royal Enfield Bullet. These provided the perfect centerpiece for the rustic vintage rural Punjab theme we were after.

Wedding Ceremony Look

SAPNA’S OUTFIT: I initially wanted a traditional red-colored outfit, however after looking for a few days, we went to a shop called Nilibar in Ludhiana where the sales assistant encouraged me to look at other colors. The first thing he picked up was a dual-toned orange and pink unstitched lehenga in raw silk, which I absolutely fell in love with. The color was just perfect on my skin! I love that in some photos my outfit looks red and in others, orange.

JEWELLERY: I kept the jewellery really simple but elegant. I bought my maang tika, necklaces, and earrings from PC Jeweller and the chuda and kaleere from Bittu Bangle & Art Jewellery in Chandigarh. My chuda matched my red dupatta.

SHOES: Dancing Pearls by Needledust.

HAIR & MAKEUP: Fareha Bridal Studio.

SUNDEEP’S OUTFIT: Sundeep wore a deep blue customised sherwani with intricate gold detailing courtesy of Payal Emporium in Liverpool, Sydney.

SUNDEEP’S ACCESSORIES: Traditional Sikh accessories including shingaar and maala which decorated Sundeep’s dumalla (a style of turban generally worn by Gursikhs) and a khalsa kirpan (an article of Sikh faith) in sapphire blue.

Bridal Party Look

We had a bridal party of 15 with 7 bridesmaids and 8 groomsmen:

BRIDESMAIDS’ LOOK: I wanted the girls to look like they represented me,  so instead of having one color that complimented my outfit, I got them to wear Anarkalis of different shades of colors that were part of my outfit. I bought the bridesmaids outfits from Poshak Bazaar (Chandigarh) and Meena Bazaar (online). Each bridesmaid wore pink and orange bangles and heavy jhumkas earrings. Each bridesmaid had her hair pinned to the side. Hair and makeup were by MakeupGuru by Shakereen Chowdhury and Hair and Makeup by Shairy.

GROOMSMEN’S LOOK: The groomsmen wore navy blue suits and white shirts from yd. for the Wedding Ceremony and black kurta pajamas with checkered parnas for the post-wedding photoshoot. They also wore sky blue lapel flowers from ASOS and white pocket squares and burgundy colored ties from yd. with matching turbans.

Reception

The Reception at Water View Bicentennial Park was held the week after the Wedding Ceremony. We had drinks and canapés served to guests before the event started. The night commenced with an impromptu dance, followed by speeches from our family and close friends. To break up the speeches, my brother and a few boys from Down To Bhangra (DTB) did an awesome bhangra performance.

Our Same-Day Edit was also played which left us all stunned – it was just so emotional watching the week-long events. Our photographers had asked us to pick three songs for our Same-Day Edit. This was such a difficult task, as you have to pick songs that suit you as a couple. Sundeep has no idea about Bollywood, so I had to do this one myself. I have always been a fan of Sufi music, and a huge fan of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. Leading up to the wedding, my father introduced me to a qawali Sanu Te Changa Tu Lagna by Nusrat and we ended up using an upbeat rendition of it during the wedding celebrations. The other song I really had to have, was Heer from Jab Tak Hai Jaan. This is a really special song to me and I just knew it had to be in my wedding video when I first heard it! The song is sung in Punjabi and essentially talks about a girl who yearns for her beloved to take her away with him.

Sundeep and I then did our thank you speech, cut the cake and performed our first dance to Ambarsariya from the movie Fukrey and Sadi Gali from Tanu Weds Manu. We had not prepared for our first dance, and I remember only deciding the songs about an hour beforehand. The most memorable part of the night was partying with all our friends and family on the dance floor thanks to Punjabi Groove Masters and live dhol by Platinum Dholis – it went off! All food was catered by WaterView Bicentennial Park.

Reception Look

SAPNA’S OUTFIT: I had already worn suits to all my other functions and really wanted an electrifying, loud and bright lehenga for the Reception. After doing a lot of research, I chose to go with JADE by Monica & Karishma as their designs are so sophisticated. I contacted them via email and dealt with a consultant who was very patient and assisted me with customizing my outfit and working with my favorite colors – teal, hot pink and gold. The lehenga was beautifully packaged and delivered to me in a personalized trunk with my name on it.

JEWELLERY: Earrings by Tanishq (Mia Collection).

SHOES: Kardashian Kollection.

HAIR & MAKEUP: Fareha Bridal Studio.

SUNDEEP’S OUTFIT: Custom made a dark navy suit with satin lapels, designed by Montagio.

SHOES & ACCESSORIES: Shoes by FlorsheimBlack paisley tie, chequered car race flag cufflinks, and white paisley pocket square – all accessories were designed by Montagio.

Reception Decor & Unique Details

DECOR: We had pink and purple floral arrangements throughout and purple orchids for table centrepieces. The chair sashes were magenta and gold to complement my lehenga.

UNIQUE DETAILS: 

  • Pre-reception photo shoot: This was in a garage/workshop. Sundeep and I wore CAT boots for the shoot, and even had WWE wrestling championship title belts, just to have some fun before the reception.
  • Reception entrance: Since our entrances to each of our wedding events were unique and memorable, we chose to make another grand thumping entry into our reception. We rolled into our reception on a Classic Chrome 2013 Royal Enfield Bullet motorcycle with a sidecar, which was to our surprise was an absolute crowd pleaser!

Honeymoon

After the week long wedding celebrations we wanted to go somewhere peaceful, relaxing and laid back. The South Island of New Zealand ticked all the boxes as it was just a stone’s throw away, had breathtaking natural beauty, wasn’t heavily populated and as Sundeep loves driving, had ample choices for beautiful long drives. We went on a road trip in a hire car (a Ford of course) and it turned out to be a great honeymoon destination for that time of year as the snow season was drawing to a close, giving us a perfect mix of sunshine and snow-capped mountains. We flew into Christchurch the day after the reception and returned from Queenstown two weeks later. If I were to describe the South Island of New Zealand in one word, I would say breathtaking – simply breathtaking.

Tips For Brides-To-Be

  1. Don’t forget what is most important to you. We are all aware that wedding planning can be very stressful and an emotional rollercoaster. Some people are lucky and have everything go their way – but if something does not work out the way you want it to, be prepared to let it go. Don’t forget that once your wedding day is over, it won’t matter. What does matter in the end is marrying the love of your life, and having all your loved ones present on your big day.
  2. Delegate, even on the wedding day! Write things down that you would like to happen on the day and delegate them. You won’t have time to remember a lot of things on the day and your families will be the ones that will be running around the most. Make sure you delegate tasks to people you can rely on. I only remembered on the morning of the wedding that I had to pick up my bridal bouquet! I was lucky that my florist was only 5 minutes away from the ceremony venue.
  3. Be true to yourself. Be inspired by others, but do what represents you. Every girl wants a fairy-tale wedding and what makes a wedding memorable and unique, is staying true to who you are. Let your wedding be a reflection and celebration of your individuality, and your togetherness as a couple.

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