Tesikan + Aashna by Nik Photography 

When we first met we thought we couldn’t be more different but as time went on, we realised that besides not sharing a mutual love for maths, we had a lot in common…

Tell us a little about yourselves, what you do, what you love…

Aashna: Theshi works in financial auditing and I work as a Speech Pathologist at a hospital. We are both really shy, have strong family roots and love adventure. When we aren’t working, we love going for hikes, watching Bollywood movies on the couch, cooking and playing basketball.

How/where/when did you meet – and what were your first impressions?

Aashna: Theshi and I met at a university ball in 2017. Our mutual friends were dating so we ended up sitting at the same table and started talking. It wasn’t really love at first sight but we definitely had a lot in common. He seemed really nervous but I was drawn to how sweet and kind-hearted he was. I love that on the outside he is this huge guy with a beard and a confident strut but when you get to know him he is the most sensitive and gentle person you’d even meet. There is just so much more than meets the eye with him and I am so glad we met and got the chance to fall in love.

Tesikan: In 2017 I met a girl at a ball and it felt kind of like a dream since I could never imagine myself being able to talk to a girl and making a good impression. She was gorgeous, spontaneous, genuine and for some reason she spent the whole night talking to me. I thought things were going great until she asked me to dance. She could not see me dance! I said no and thought I blew my shot but the next day I messaged her and she replied. I knew Aashna was someone really special and talking to her that night led us onto an amazing journey. The only day that beats the day we met was the day I finally got to call her my wife.

When did you first realise that this was someone you’d like to spend the rest of your life with?

Tesikan: Oddly enough, I realised that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with Aashna in the midst of our first argument. It is kind of hard to explain why but it was the first time in my life I was standing in front of someone I knew was worth fighting for. I hated seeing her upset and all I wanted to do was hug her and tell her I loved her.

Aashna: Honestly, it took me a while to realise I was in love with Theshi. For me it was really important that the person I chose to spend my life with was respectful of my parents and all the sacrifices they made to provide for our family and build a life for us. I know this was important to Theshi too since we both come from immigrant families. Though both of our parents took very different paths to build a life in Australia and provide for their families, they challenges they faced and the strength they had is something we are both forever grateful for. One day I heard Theshi talking to a friend of his about my parents and how much he admired them, it was that day that I knew we would spend the rest of our lives together and one day have a family of our own. I think having respect of each other and our families is a really important part our relationship and the love we share.

Was there a proposal? Tell us a little about it…

Tesikan: Aashna and I love spending time in nature, so I always imagined proposing to her on her hike or while walking on the beach. I am not usually the one organising things, that’s definitely Aashna’s domain, so this was huge for me. I went to the beach a few days before I planned on proposing to find the perfect spot. On the big day I asked Aashna’s dad to set-up a cabana at the spot I had picked while I kept Aashna occupied. I hadn’t accounted for the changing tide, turns out our special spot was slowing disappearing under water as the sun began to set. Aashna’s dad messaged me to hurry things along, so our romantic walk down the beach turned into a very brisk walk. Unfortunately, we were walking in the wrong direction (my bad!). Anyways, when we eventually got there I was so glad we that I just got straight down on one knee and popped the questions before anything else could go wrong. I felt the same butterflies in my tummy that I did on the day we met. When I saw her underneath the cabana smiling and crying at the same time, nothing else really mattered.

Aashna: It was definitely perfectly imperfect. It was not a surprise at all. But it was a perfect moment and a memory that I will hold in my heart forever. I love how much effort he put in to try keep it all under the wraps and plan everything out.

Tell us about the vision you had for the mood or style of your wedding…

Aashna: Indian weddings are usually a big affair- going for a number of days and with a lot of people. Both of us were keen to keep our wedding traditional in many aspects, particularly our ceremony, but with a bit of an “us” twist. We wanted our wedding to be outdoors, we were also keen to avoid the logistical nightmare of multiple venues and having too many vendors to coordinate, so we decided to host all three days of our wedding festivities at the one venue. Orchards at Spring Vale Farm was the perfect setting because there were so many different areas on the estate we could use so that each day had its own special flair. We had a vision of a magical Indian wedding with all our family and friends, great music and delicious food. To be able to have all this and stick to our budget we had to DIY all of our wedding décor, which was actually a lot of fun!

The first day was the ‘Mehndi and Sangeet Night’ held before the actual wedding ceremony, to help the bride and groom prepare for the big day. The Mehndi ceremony involves applying henna for the bride, her family and close friends. Mehndi represents the bond of matrimony and signifies the love and affection between the couple and their families. Following on from the mehndi, the Sangeet starts. This is a festive function where the families come together to sing, dance, and revel in the joy of the upcoming union. We performed dances with our family and friends- bride’s side versus groom’s side- a little friendly competition before the wedding day.

Luckily the international boarders opened up just in time for our wedding so we had all of our family there to celebrate with us and lend us a hand with setting up our dream wedding- we honestly couldn’t have done it without them! My cousin even built our mandap (similar to an arbour), which we got married under. We were keen to keep our styling simple and classic. In keeping with the season coming towards the end of Summer and the start of Autumn, we opted for a soft colour palate. We even asked our guest to wear pastel colours for our ceremony and it looked like an absolute dream. Our ceremony was followed by a traditional Indian lunch, sitting under gorgeous sailcloth umbrellas.

We decided to hold our wedding reception a day after our ceremony, so that we could rest, refresh and really enjoy the party. We were so glad we did this because we were absolutely exhausted after our ceremony. Our reception was held on a grassy lawn with an elegant Hampton’s style marquee. We set-up long tables with white linen table cloths, country-style cross back chairs and very minimal décor on the tables to bring a garden soiree vibe to the evening. We set-up an open-air dance floor and got to have our first dance under the stars.

What was one element you were happy to splurge on?

We were both happy to splurge on our outfits for each of the wedding cerebrations. Since our wedding was outdoors and we wanted to keep our decorations very minimalistic, our wedding outfits set the tone and atmosphere for each of the days. The designs on all our Indian outfits were hand-stitched and represent many centuries of craftmanship, which we wanted to showcase.

Did anything happen on your wedding day that you laugh about in hindsight (even if it was stressful at the time)?
On the evening of our reception we forgot to put out the table number on each of the tables (one of the challenges of a DIY wedding). While we were waiting for our entrance song to start playing we wondered why it was taking everyone so long to find their seats. It wasn’t until we woke up the next morning and saw the table number still packed up in a box that we realised! Cheers to all our guests for still managing to find their seats!

Tell us about your main outfits, what was unique, is there a story?

Tesikan: All our traditional outfits were custom-made in India after Aashna shared her vision with our local vendors. Aashna has an amazing mind and I am always in awe of her imagination. I remember early on in the planning process she was describing her vision to me for our outfits, showing me pictures of buildings in Rajasthan and the Taj Mahal. “How is this going to become our wedding outfits?” I wondered. When I saw our ivory outfits for the Sangeet night with the amazing mirror-work, all I could see was the Taj Mahal.

Ceremony Location: Orchards at Spring Vale | Reception Location: Orchards at Spring Vale | Videographer: Prism Cinema | Photographer: Nik Photography | Entertainment: Consonance Entertainment  | Hire: Elderberry Events | Marquee: Elderberry Events | Catering: Gill Family Kitchen, Swaadesh, Ian Curley | Beverages: Peaches Pop-up Bar | Cake: Cherry Tree Cakes | Grooms Attire: Dulhan, Saachi & Institchu | Brides Attire: Sangeet & Saachi | Bridal jewellery: Dulhan Exclusives | Makeup: The Make-Up Hub | Brides Fragrance: Giorgio Armani | Groom Fragrance: Dolce Gabbana | Groomsmen attire: Institchu  | Groomsman and bridesmaid Indian attire: Dulhan Exclusives