Elegant Chic Sri Lankan Wedding

Saranya & Meth

Snapshot

My favorite moment from the wedding…

There were many moments that we will hold dear to our hearts. During the Hindu Ceremony, we loved seeing each other for the first time that special day. The magnitude of joy I felt when Meth tied the Thali around me, whilst being blessed by the shower of flowers thrown by our close family and friends, will never be forgotten. We also loved exchanging our personal vows. It reflected our happy go lucky attitude as well as our unwavering love for each other despite our flaws or the obstacles we may face.

I had the most fun…

We had fun playing the ‘find the ring’ game during our Hindu Ceremony which determined who rules the roost in the relationship. At the Wedding Reception, playing the shoe game brought lots of mischief and laughter!

I cried when…

We were both filled with happy tears when we exchanged our vows. During our speeches, we couldn’t help tearing up when we spoke about my grandparents and our loved ones who couldn’t be there. It meant so much to have the blessing of our grandparents and family members who had traveled so far to be there for us.

My wedding style was…

Simple, intimate and elegant.

It was most important to meet that…

We enjoyed the significant moments and to make sure our friends and family had a good time.

Valuable advice for brides to be…

  1. We learned that no matter how much of an organized or meticulous planner you are, there are some things you cannot control.
  2. The best solution is to delegate tasks, keep an open mind and don’t lose sight of what matters most – which is marrying the love of your life!
  3. Don’t be pressured by others expectations and create a personalised wedding focussing on what matters means most to both of you.

About The Couple

How we met

We were introduced by mutual family friends. Our phone numbers were exchanged and we briefly messaged each other for two days before meeting up for brunch. Before our first meetup, we exchanged photos to identify each other. Meth had sent me his first, and my initial thought was that he’s way out of my league. I decided to send a ridiculously bad photo (which was edited to look worse) of me to sabotage our meeting. It didn’t work!

Our first date

After our brunch, we decided to have our proper date. This was at a Malaysian restaurant in Camberwell called Masak Ku. Meth and I both love Malaysian cuisine. It was a quiet night and we ended up having the entire restaurant to ourselves. It was an intimate evening filled with frank conversations that felt natural and comfortable.

When I knew he was the one

It was never loved at first sight with our relationship. Over time, we built a solid friendship where we were brutally open and unfiltered with each other. We both soon realized how unconditionally loving we were towards one another and with that came the wish to spend the rest of our lives together.

The proposal

Meth had organized my sister to take me out for a manicure. After my manicure, he picked me up and we had lunch at Hu Tong Dumpling Bar. We had a great day at the city just venturing around the Royal Botanical gardens. Once we came back to my home, Meth wanted to speak to my parents. Noting the house was so quiet, I went to look for them in the backyard. My parents were not there but what I did find was a beautifully laid out table for two surrounded by fairy lights, flowers, and candles. I then realized he had set everything up whilst I was out with my sister. He brought over a present and I opened it to find a photo frame with our favorite goofy photo booth picture. On the frame, he had written ‘Will you marry me?’ I broke into tears and let out the happiest ‘yes!’ He did try to get down on one knee but I stopped him. We stood as equals when he placed the ring on me. Meth had purchased all my favorite foods for that night. Roti chanai from Pappa Rich for dinner to dessert from Gelato Messina! It was truly magical and thoughtful!

What marriage means to us

As mentioned in our vows, it means to place great importance in each other’s happiness and not to take each other for granted. To base friendship, a sense of humor, kindness, and patience as the core elements of our relationship.

The Details

Wedding Planning

WEDDING VISION: The wedding planning roughly took us nine months. As a first step, we sat down and discussed our individual needs. This helped us to clarify doubts and to make sure we were on the same page. Following this, Meth and I shared the tasks, as well as delegated it to our family and friends. The experience was both stressful and exciting. Bringing our vision to life was a joy but we also realized that it was important to be thorough and not overlook any fine details.

We also spoke to our close friends who had already gone through this process and were kind enough to pass down their wisdom. This was useful in determining a rough budget as well the basic rundown of how the events occur and what was required.From there, we decided on the dates, venues, photographers and videographer.

WEDDING SHOPPING: Most of our shopping was done online. Due to leave restrictions, neither of us could travel overseas for shopping. Despite this, we were lucky enough to find suppliers who made the process fairly stress free. It can be overwhelming looking through numerous options, so keep it simple by having a clear idea and do not complicate decision making for yourself.

Key Professionals

Simplicity and unique were the keywords for us. We wanted the civil ceremony to be simple and sweet so that we could indulge ourselves in the good food and music straight away. In regards to the venue, styling or the day of the function, we wanted to stay true to ourselves and our vision and kept it personalized, contemporary and fun. We were adamant about not doing anything for the sake of it or because it was a common expectation at a wedding.

INVITATIONS & STATIONERY: With the invites, we took a personalized approach to reflect our creative personalities. We discovered Uma J of Uma’s Street on Instagram, an amazing artist, who painted us a beautiful illustration of Meth and I surrounded by our immediate family. We chose this to signify both the wedding and the union of two families. We also loved the idea of framing the illustration after the wedding as a memory painted in art.

KEY TIP:

  • Book early. It is important to be mindful that vendors or venues can get booked out quickly. That was probably the biggest lesson we gained early on during the wedding planning process. Even if you don’t get your desired venue or photographer, remind yourself that there are plenty of options available and remain positive!
  • Trust yourself. Friends or family will have numerous opinions ranging from music, food to outfit choices, nonetheless, remind yourself that this day ultimately celebrates love and focus on that. Trust the vision that you have as a couple for your wedding. Reflect on this even once your wedding is over, as the last thing you need after this immense effort is for it to be tainted by any negativity.

Wedding Events

Our ceremonies were held over two days in August 2016 in Melbourne:

  1. Hindu Ceremony – Sunday, 8 AM, Shri Shiva Vishnu Temple, 380 guests.
  2. Civil Ceremony & Reception – Monday, PM, Two Ton Max, 168 guests.

Hindu Ceremony Overview

We celebrated our Hindu Ceremony at the Shri Shiva Vishnu Temple. It was an early morning wedding starting at 8 AM. The entire ceremony reflected our culture as Hindu Sri Lankan Tamils and fulfilled our parents’ vision and their traditional expectations. It was a memorable ceremony filled with colour, the love of our family and friends as well as great vegetarian food catered by the temple.

There were many memorable moments from this day; from seeing each other for the first time and being able to laugh throughout the ceremony to having Meth’s eight year old neice, Hareni, sing a beautiful Carnatic song for us. It was such a beautiful feeling to have our close family and friends there, especially those who had travelled from around the world.

Hindu Ceremony Decor

THEME: We decided to go with a red and gold theme to keep within the auspicious colors.

DECOR: We consulted Kamal Nannar of Bollywood Mandaps for our mandap while Red Temple Events styled the event. They created a very calming and peaceful ambiance with the use of decor items, such as table centerpieces, that complimented our traditional mandap.

For our guestbook table, we used a white globe for the guests to write their wishes and incorporated a framed copy of the illustration from our wedding invitations to welcome the guests.

Hindu Ceremony Looks

SARANYA’S OUTFIT: The first saree, kindly gifted to me by my mother in law, was bought at The Chennai Silks in India. It was a combination of mustard and various shades of gold. The second saree, custom made by VA collections, was a magenta red shade embellished with simple gold paisley designs.

HAIR & MAKEUP: I had my hair and makeup was done by the Sumi of Sayuri Creations. To compliment my traditional bridal look, she gave me a bronze smokey eye and a bright pink lip. I had my hair in an elegant low bun with a gajra.

JEWELLERY & ACCESSORIES: I paired both the sarees with jewellery bought online from AKN Jewellery and Maya’s Boutique. The desired look was traditional and elegant.

METH’S OUTFIT: As part of the traditional Sri Lankan Tamil custom, Meth wore an ivory gold kurta with the cream gold-bordered dhoti from The Chennai Silk.

Civil Ceremony & Reception Overview

Both the Civil Ceremony and Reception were held at Two Ton Max. We loved the blank canvas provided at Two Ton Max and again this allowed us to get involved creatively and reflect our individualities as a couple. With the help of our awesome team, we brought our vision to life. We loved the ambience created and the intimacy at the venue.

While we exchanging our vows, we blurred out everything around us and focused purely on each other. This was the most heart-warming and eye tearing moment for us. The atmosphere was perfect; from the fusion of Sri Lankan street foods with western elements to the fun choreographed dances performed by our friends.

Whilst taking a quick photo outside, Meth and I took the opportunity to absorb it all. It was a joy seeing the fun our family and friends were having on the dance floor. It was a wonderful feeling.

Civil Ceremony & Reception Decor

THEME: To stick to our vision, we went with a simple and contemporary white themed setup.

DECOR: We both wanted long tables and loved the idea of globes hanging down centrally along the tables. To complement this, we suggested baby’s breath flowers to be used as the centrepieces. Whilst exchanging our vows, we used a flower wall as a backdrop. To add personal input, we made the place cards and the seating chart ourselves. We wanted to achieve an intimate and beautiful setting which was possible with the teams we worked with.

Civil Ceremony & Reception Looks

SARANYA’S OUTFIT: The lehenga I wore was bought on Frontier Bazarr a visit to a friend’s wedding in India a few months before the engagement. I decided to wear the navy-blue skirt and complement it with a custom made gold blouse made by Gather and Stitch Couture.

HAIR & MAKEUP: I had my hair done by Hair By Neveen. It was styled in soft waves. Makeup by Jane Truong was kept minimal with a dewy glow.

JEWELLERY & ACCESSORIES: The jewellery was very minimal. I only wore statement earrings from Sokora Jewels.

METH’S OUTFIT: Meth had bought his suit and tie from The Suit Concierge and Hugo Boss. He wore a dark navy blue suit with a dark pink patterned tie.

METH’S SHOES: His shoes were from Aquila.

Other Unique Details

MUSIC: Once the Civil Ceremony was complete and we were announced as husband and wife, our DJ played ‘Latch’ by Sam Smith. At the Reception, we walked in and cut the wedding cake to our favourite Michael Jackson song, ‘You rock my world’.

GROUP DANCE: Both our personalities shy away from the limelight. For that reason, we preferred not to do a traditional first dance. Instead we opted to join in the group dance which was organized by our friends. We felt that this would be much more fun and something least expected by the guests.

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