Happy to feature Preethi Bala, a charming young maiden with impeccable taste , who won the Vipin Photoshoot contest as the bride of the month :) She excitedly shares how she planned a successful wedding being thousands of miles away.
I admit to being one of those who religiously followed Shopzters in the months leading to my wedding. I especially enjoyed the bride of the month column so it is very exciting for me to actually be featured here!( Thank you Prasitha!) :)
Prathyush and I have known each other for over 4 years and our story is the most random if not the craziest one I have heard yet -which is maybe why we decided to put it on our invite! :D ( CHECK HERE - wedding invite ) We had a good 6 months to plan the wedding but being so far away wasn't the most ideal. Also I have no idea how the 6 months passed by so quickly ;) Our families deserve all the credit for organizing the whole affair and I doubt if we would have done any better even if we were in Chennai! :)
We arrived in Chennai only 3 weeks before the wedding so I had to let my parents handle most of my shopping. Being a designer it would be an understatement to say I am picky about my clothes but when my dad volunteered to handpick all of my sarees, despite being a tad nervous ,I said yes!( Daddy's girl all the way) He did not disappoint :D I loved all of my sarees and received several compliments which I promptly passed on to him ;) My sarees were from Kalaniketan( oonjal & reception), Palam silks( Viratham & Nalangu), sundari silks(engagement) and nalli. Prathyush had it easier; we picked up his suit and shoes from Hugo Boss in New York while his other clothes were from Zara.
I am not much of a jewelry person so I kept it simple in that department. I do love older traditional designs so most of the jewelry I wore was passed on from my mom. The other pieces were bought at GRT and Tanishq. My mother in law also gifted a lovely antique ruby set from Jugal Kishore. I picked a pair of comfortable embellished wedges from Lifestyle to pair with my reception saree.
Now the blouses were the harder part. I did quite a bit of research before zeroing in on Shaam's embroidery works to do my blouses. Shyam was willing to go above and beyond to accommodate my requests; we decided on the look for each blouse and we even did measurements and fitting on skype! ;) Once I was in Chennai he completed all of the required alterations and minor changes and I was good to go!
I think the first thing I did after my wedding was fixed was to book my make up artist. Noor did the make up for my wedding and reception and obviously it goes without saying that his work was impeccable. Mrs.Vijaya did my make up and hair for the pre wedding ceremonies and she kept it clean and simple.
I got my mehendi done from Ayisha. She was super professional and worked with such speed and precision. She even followed up after the wedding to find out how my mehendi turned out which says a lot about her work ethic.
Zeroing in on decorations was fun because I actually was involved in this process. We decided the whole look only a few weeks before the wedding but Mr.Pandian from Pandian decorators was a thorough professional who kept it classy and elegant just the way we wanted. I especially loved the reception decor!
Onto food..! :D Though we carefully picked the menu, the spread put together by Sri Mookambika caterers surpassed all our expectations. The food was excellent, the service was fantastic and our guests gushed about it even days after the wedding! I myself admit to overeating whenever I got the chance :P
While in the US I signed up on a whim for the contest conducted by shopzters for a free photoshoot with Vipin photography. I was pretty sure I wouldn't win, so imagine my surprise when I did. We had planned to do the shoot once I came down to Chennai but when Vipin pitched the idea of doing a couple shoot instead of a solo shoot I was so stoked! We had wanted to really do a couple shoot before the wedding but were hard pressed for time so abandoned the idea, so this was such a golden chance for us to actually bond and get a bunch of beautiful memories to treasure while at it. Thank you Vipin and Prasitha for making this happen! :D
@foton# covered the entire wedding and the very talented Ashok Arsh from @aa-photography# did the candids! The photos bear testimony to how good our photographers were :D Ashok & Rajesh had a lot of great ideas, had so much energy and the whole photoshoot was a lot of fun despite going well past midnight!
As a bride who was abroad and had to plan my wedding from afar I would like to give some pointers to to-be brides who may be in similar situations. 1. Do your research 2. As much as we'd like to be involved in planning every little detail of the wedding it is near impossible to accomplish it sitting several thousand miles away. Allocate tasks to family members. So obviously skype is your best friend :D 3.Things seldom happen the way we plan. Somethings aren't in our control so it's okay to let go and just enjoy the occasion rather than sweating the small stuff.
It goes without saying that as a to be bride I ate healthy, drank lots of fluids, got regular exercise but it was equally important for me to have cheat days to snack, satisfy my sweet tooth just generally be lazy! :P It also helps to be surrounded by friends and family who make you laugh so you don't have any of those pre wedding jitters!
Now looking back on my wedding planning, I do feel some of the things I worried about seem silly( like last minute acne)! Just remember you do not have to look perfect on your wedding as long as you pick the perfect person to spend the rest of your life, consider yourself lucky :D Good luck to all you ladies and thank you for reading!