Swasti Khemani - A Real Bride Unveils her Wedding Diary...
Swasti is from Calcutta and got married to Vinayak who is from Delhi. The crazy part is that she lived in Bombay, he lived in Zurich, her parents in Calcutta and his in Delhi! Phew! So after about 10 visits to Delhi, a few to Calcutta and some to Mumbai they were able to plan their long-distance wedding! And my… it turned out well!
And the Bride herself takes over from here... :)
How we met...
A family friend called me one day and said “Can you fly to Delhi tomorrow? There is this guy who I think you’d like”. I reluctantly flew down on a Sunday in March ’12, met Vinayak for just a day and a half. He flew off to Zurich and I to Bombay but we kept in touch (sigh! Long distance from Day 0) and met almost every week in either Bombay or Delhi! Within 5-6 weeks even the airlines were like “get married already!” I think we really liked each other from the very beginning.
P.S: Vinayak’s words “ I knew I was going to marry you the second time we met”… wow confidence!
What I wore...Outfits, Jewelry et al.
My Sangeet Lehenga was by Manish Malhotra and the Wedding one by none other than Sabyasachi. It took me a few months to decide on the outfits… Being able to access designers in Calcutta, Mumbai and Delhi was honestly not the most fun thing. I must have tried on at least 200 outfits and seen photos and catalogues of another million before being able to decide on the 2 main day outfits… For the smaller functions I just went to Emporio and Ogaan, Haus Khas and bought everything off the rack! It was a living nightmare to find the perfect outfit for my wedding… I just wasn't liking anything at Tarun, Ankur etc... The few that were good were Anju Modi, Manish, Sabyasachi, Anamika… I am also not a 'bling' person at all so Anjali Arjun’s aren’t my style…
Delhi still seems to be the place with a lot of variety and choice…
As far as the jewelry is concerned, my mom figured all that out from Calcutta and a few pieces from Mumbai (very good for diamond workmanship and quality. It pays to have an extremely aesthetic mother with impeccable taste in clothes and jewelry. From the matha patti, round nath, polki earrings, 2 neckpieces… she had managed it all...
I am also lucky to have some very antique jadao from my grandmother’s parents… the hathfool’s, earrings, and neckpieces were antiques so looked gorgeous…
My Make-Up artist...
A bit of a fiasco… I had hired someone in Calcutta and booked him to fly to Delhi as he was doing all my functions in Calcutta and you know the whole comfort factor thing. I had to cancel him last minute because Mom and I felt that he just wasn't up to the mark!! Sigh!
We ran to Delhi and spoke to some 10 others and then hired Rishabh Khanna (suggested by my friend Avantika Meattle). He was so down to earth, simple and just amazing. I couldn't have looked better than I did! I was honestly tired of big make-up artists and their nakhras… I’ve had friends being ditched the day before their wedding so I wasn't taking a chance with someone super high handed!
Functions....and yes I performed :P
Haha… the sangeet I guess was obviously my favorite function! The performances from both sides were fantastic… my bhabhi and sister did a fabulous job choosing the craziest songs I loved… having speeches from my friends from all over the world and family of course… and the flash mob by my friends and family on 'gangnam' style was genius!
On a cool 29th December afternoon at 31 Aurungzeb Road… great music, great performances, Lebanese cooked by a Syrian chef, Delhi chaats and mulled wine were just perrrffeeccttt!!
(And of course, my Manish Malhotra… never forgetting you darling)
Tips for such ‘Long Distance’ Wedding Planning
As if long distance relationships are not bad enough, long distance wedding planning is even worse! Even more so for a control freak like me…it was a tad bit easier because of the flying around we did. Mom and me probably flew to Delhi every month for a week at least and Vinayak was able to come down for weekends too. He fortunately had projects in India for a few weeks. Still… long-distance wedding planning is a lot of work!
1 piece of advice: Whatever you plan will not happen exactly as expected… learn to let go and detach! Enjoy the wedding and refrain from getting involved with hotels and decorators and caterers… whatever you do its not going to be fun if you micromanage everything! Stay away and just enjoy with your friends and family! That's it...
And finally Tips for other Bride Zilla's out there
Enjoy! Enjoy! Enjoy! Enjoy your courtship; enjoy your fiance before he turns into a husband .. err .. (lol just kidding) and your family and friends who are all there for you!
Each moment is a cherished memory and a blur (I was high on life for the 3 wedding days) but will remain with you forever ..
Detach from small logistics matters, decor food, alcohol .. etc and all the other wedding planning .. you're the bride and it's your time .. you're spotlight .. freak out !!
Get your nails done, tons of facials and body scrubs before the days come and feel like a bride .. detox, eat healthy and glow!
P.S: Taking paracetamol on the wedding day really helped me! I had a long long long cold day (Dec 30th in Delhi .. yeah it was cold) and had to meet 1500 people. Tylenol was my best friend.
Get the Varmaala to be openable so that it can be re-fixed under your dupatta which will already be pulling your head down and wear wedges under the lehenga .. noone can see them .. will make life easier!
Who Clicked ME!
Avantika Meatlle was just fantastic .. I loved the personal attention, the amazing effort and style and technique. I loved the little audio/visual, the video and some stunning photos she and her team have taken. The photos and videos are honestly priceless! Always get a great photographer (photo journalist) to tell your wedding story ..