He sat behind me at high school and we ended up going to the year 13 school ball together. We’ve attended school and university graduations together, supported each other through our career journeys, and navigated the nuances of an intercultural relationship.
Scott and I have been together for over a decade. He is a clinical psychologist and I’m a senior consultant with an executive search and leadership firm. He sat behind me at high school and we ended up going to the year 13 school ball together. We’ve attended school and university graduations together, supported each other through our career journeys, and navigated the nuances of an intercultural relationship. We’ve built a solid foundation of trust, respect and love.
The proposal was magic. Scott got down on one knee in Tulum, Mexico with ancient ruins and the ocean beside us. He’d prepared a speech reflecting on memories over the last decade, including the first time he said “I love you” at a high school party. He even confessed that he knew, at the age of 17, that I was the person he would marry one day. We both cried and celebrated with a margarita.
I’m originally from India and Scott has Scottish ancestry so we decided to throw two weddings to celebrate both cultures. Our Indian wedding had a traditional baraat parade with Indian dhol drummers. The groom traditionally rides in front of the parade so Scott sat in a vintage convertible with his friends and family dancing around him. I planned both weddings with spreadsheets and Pinterest boards galore.
Our theme was inspired by Omaha beach with organic tones, lines and dried foliage to reflect the sand dunes and wild flowers.
Sheena from Rock & Honey is a superhero. It was her first Indian wedding but she made our vision come to life. The cane furniture, leather Moroccan poufs, brass details and organic linens created a charming atmosphere. There was even a lounge where guests could get mehendi (henna patterns) from local artists. My wedding dress for the Indian ceremony, The East Gown by Rue de Seine, was a boho-luxe dream. It’s customary for Indian brides to walk down the aisle beneath a special cloth for protection. I chose my mother’s wedding sari from the 1980s as mine, and I wore heirloom jewellery passed down from my great-grandmother. Scott foraged wild flowers from the exact spot of our first date for my bridal bouquet. We made sure the ceremony was personal to our love story. Scott’s cousin did a reading from the Harry Potter books and my younger brother sang a mash-up of our parent’s wedding songs.
The most unique part of the day was the baraat parade. Imagine over 100 people, many of whom wore Indian clothing for the first time, dancing in sync to the beats of dhol drummers and Bhangra dancers. It was electric. My mother later blessed Scott by placing a red tilaka on his forehead for protection and prosperity.
When you come from different cultural backgrounds, family dynamics and contrasting world views can be a challenge. One of the recurring jokes at our wedding was that Scott is an Indian parent’s dream come true: he loves cricket, he’s going to be a doctor, and loves spicy food. Jokes aside, it’s been tricky at times to get support as an interracial couple, but the people who matter most have always welcomed us with open arms. I hope they’re an inspiration to more conservative Indian families. There were very few Indian priests willing to marry us so we’re grateful to have found someone who did a bilingual ceremony so that all guests could understand our traditional Indian Hindu ceremony around the sacred fire. Our honeymoon was spent in lockdown but it doesn’t matter. We had time to reflect on our wonderful wedding memories.
Photographer: @chasewildphotos | Venue (day 1): @sculptureum.nz | Bride’s attire:Eastern Gown @ruedeseinebridal | Groom’s attire:@barkersclothing | Bride’s fragrance Coco Mademoiselle by Chanel | Bride’s earrings: Great grandmother’ | Bride’s bangles From grandmother | Videographer: @deerlightmedia | Celebrant:@megjenningscelebrant | Rings: @meadowlarkjewellery + @walkerandhall | Hire & Flora: @rockandhoney_installations | Hair & Makeup: @serenity_makeup | Shoes: @maisonvalentino |Cake: @rose_crafted_cakes | Entertainment:@whitechapeljak | Styling & planning:@rockandhoney_installations | Catering:sculptureum.nz | Groomsmen’s attire:@barkersclothing | Bridesmaids’ attire :@piagrams | Venue (day 2) :@alexandraparknz | Entertainment:@djgabbroo | Bride’s indian lehenga:@roopdarshan | Groom’s Indian sherwani:@roopdarshan | Bride’s canopy Mother’s wedding sari | Hair & Makeup: @melindamakeupnz | Groom’s jewellery Emerald and pearl necklace, family heirloom from India.