Did you gawk over the beautiful dual ceremonies of Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra’s wedding? Where you in awe of the melange of North Indian and South Indian traditions in Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone’s wedding? Organising a cross-cultural wedding is no easy feat though. All the magic you saw on your Instagram feeds takes months of planning and perfect execution. Here are a few tips to keep in mind before you embark on organising a cross-cultural wedding.
Tip #1: Understand the different traditions
The first and most important step to host a cross-cultural wedding would be to have a deep understanding of what the different rituals and traditions are. Take time out to talk to both families and understand which rituals are important to them and why. Instead of simply taking note of what the ritual is, try and understand the meaning behind every ritual. Wedding rituals are extremely sacred in most cultures and therefore, it is very important to execute these rituals with patience and after proper understanding and research.
Tip#2: Infuse the cultural difference into your menus
An intelligent way to enhance your unique wedding would be to introduce a cross-cultural menu into the event. Bring in the Chaat Station from North India while also having a simple South Indian Dosa Bar to integrate the flavours of the north and south into your weddings and give your guests a holistic experience of the two cultures at your wedding.
Tip #3: Keep your guests informed about different rituals
As important as it is for you to understand the different traditions, it is also important that your guests understand what these rituals mean. It is a great idea to have a small pamphlet or a booklet that explains the variety of rituals that would happen at your wedding so they can be more involved in the events. Certain rituals even require the participation of your guests and so, it becomes necessary for you to allow your guests to have an appreciation for the events at your wedding.
Tip #4: Experiment with music and dance
Nothing brings out different cultures than the magic of dance and music. Especially in India where every culture has its own dance and music styles, art forms often define different cultures. A Gujarati-Bengali wedding could probably showcase some Garba and Chau performances at the sangeet while a Christian-Muslim wedding could feature a qawali performance. This would also serve as a great platform to educate and celebrate different cultures.
Tip #5: Give out unique party favours
Lastly, personalise your party favours for your guests with little titbits from your respective cultures. Small souvenirs that are native to your region is an appealing way to add some novelty into your wedding and end your day with a special personalised gesture to your guests. For example, small mirror workboxes with small terracotta jewellery for a Marwari – Kashmiri wedding is an interesting way to blend both cultures and give your guests something truly unique.
With religion and caste not being as much of a barrier in the Indian society anymore, cross-cultural weddings have become extremely popular in today’s world. Instead of the bride’s family splurging on the wedding with their traditions, families now come together to share their traditions and truly celebrate the marriage between different cultures. Cross-cultural weddings aren’t just the latest fad in the wedding industry but it is a giant positive step in the progression of society as a whole.
The article has been contributed by Alim Morani, Division Head, Dome Occasions. Alim Morani is an entrepreneur with multiple interests, including but not limited to events in the music, food and international artist space, with a keen interest in the fine arts.