What comes to mind when you hear the word tradition? Boring? Uncreative? Obligatory? It doesn’t have to be any of that. When planning a wedding, […]
A life without adventure isn’t a life worth living.
Oh boy! You are in for a TREAT today we are taking you to Kenya for a wedding safari!
Meet the delightful Priyanka and Miraj.
These lovebirds met by accident. Apparently Priyanka gatecrashed a football match and the rest was history!
They both share the same ancient Jain heritage. Although they wanted a traditional wedding that honoured their culture and religion, they also wanted to represent their bold, adventurous personalities to shine through. Their multi-day celebration in Kenya, which they planned themselves, was full of dear friends and family, laughter, tears, a whole lot of joy and serious shapes on the dance-floor It was full of vibrant, personal, and unique touches like the bride’s favourite sunflowers or the groom’s arrival vehicle (a tractor!).
The garden setting on a coffee estate in the couple’s home town of Nairobi was another magical touch, especially since the sun shone all day despite the weather man’s predictions! Be sure to read Priyanka’s explanation of the traditional Jain ceremony, and the beautiful symbolism behind the rituals.
Without further ado, let’s go over to the bride! Enjoy these pictures of a wonderful day by the talented Cheka Photography . But first, feast your eyes on this beautiful film by my most favourite cinematographers who recently joined “team married” themselves and were invited to join their adventures in Kenya; The Wedding Filmmakers – it will take your breath away. Love truly is one of the most magical gifts in the world.
We got engaged in South Africa. We were ready to bungee off Bloukrans Bridge. He almost jumped off the bridge with the ring and had to distract me so he could pass the ring to the instructor. I came up from my jump, adrenaline pumping, and he was waiting for me with the ring, on one knee. Turns out, ours was the first proposal on the bridge! (Nu Bride: oh my!)
Our wedding was colourful and vibrant, adventurous but traditional. We’re both bold and carefree, and we just did it exactly how we wanted it. (Nu Bride: As it should be!)
The Bride’s Outfit
It was a little difficult to find, in that we had to go to a few places around Bombay to find it. But that whole thing where they say ‘you’ll know when you’ve found the right one’ is true! I put it on and it was the perfect one.
I chose my dress specifically because it wasn’t the traditional sort of thing you’d see a bride wearing. I love the animal embroidery on it and the pastel colours to match our garden wedding.
Finding Miraj’s outfit was a little difficult to find because I wanted it to be a specific colour that matched my outfit. Miraj wanted it to be simple yet elegant, and that’s what he got!
We want to give a shout out to Pareet of Cheka Photography. We would definitely recommend him. He’s fun and easy to work with, and really creative!
Our cinematographers were Adam and Rachel of The Wedding Filmmakers. We’d also definitely recommend them! There were moments we didn’t even know they were there, which to us is what makes good videographers. Invisible but busy capturing all the special moments.
Nimit Shah of Event House was our decorator, and did an incredible job of bringing our ideas to life.
The jaan (groom’s entrance) was one of Miraj’s favourite moments of the day. He came in on a tractor, which we’ve never seen done before!
We had a Jain ceremony that involved going round the ‘havan’ (fire) on the ‘mandap’ seven times. This signifies seven vows which are:
- To provide a home with a nourishing and pure diet.
- To develop physical, mental and spiritual powers.
- To increase wealth by righteous means.
- To acquire knowledge, happiness and harmony by mutual love and affection.
- To be blessed by strong, noble, and virtuous children.
- To be masters of self-restraint and longevity, to work for the welfare of the family as well as the community.
- To become true companions and retain a lifelong friendship with each other.
Seeing Miraj for the first time and watching him tear up when he saw me was one of my favourite moments. That, to me, was a deep and real moment.
We didn’t have a wedding planner, so Miraj and I did everything ourselves. We managed to keep it traditional yet colourful, exciting, and representative of us.
I love sunflowers and that was why we used them. Miraj didn’t really have any input on his favourite flowers, so I used that to my advantage!
I think practising a first dance with your partner is a true test of how well you work as a team. We did amazingly! We didn’t want it to be too soppy, so we picked ‘A Good Night’ by John Legend because it was romantic but still fun. It then transitioned into ‘Uptown Funk’ by Bruno Mars, at which point all our friends came onto the stage and joined us to open the floor. Five practice sessions and we were good to go! It was great fun!
There’s a traditional game played at Indian weddings where the bride’s brothers try to steal the groom’s shoes. Having failed at this, as the groom put on his shoes before we departed at the end of the day, I stole his shoe and threw it to my sisters. He was in disbelief as he thought I was on his side. That was a pretty funny moment!
Some more of our favourite moments…
Miraj: I revealed my last secret to her. How I won the bet we’d made before we got together, the one that got the ball rolling on the journey to ‘us’
Priyanka: When I kissed my parents goodbye and realized that was the beginning of a whole new chapter.
Challenges and Triumphs
Securing a tractor for the groom’s entrance was an interesting challenge. He pulled it off though! Another at the beginning was trying to convince our Indian parents that we didn’t need to have 1000 people at our wedding. We somehow managed to get them to 300. Triumph!
Gambling with the weather on the wedding day also presented a challenge – and a triumph! It was forecast to rain, but our garden wedding wouldn’t have looked as beautiful with a marquee, so we opted not to have one. It paid off massively! It rained for just five minutes, and only after we left the venue.
Top Tips For Other Couples
Planning a wedding can be fun if you make it so. Teamwork makes the dream work! Remember nothing is as serious as it seems in the moment and you both need to be on the same team at all times! Finally, don’t forget to keep smiling on the wedding day!
GOLD advice. Thank you Priyanka and Miraj for sharing your beautiful adventure with Nu Bride.
Photographer: Cheka Photography
Cinematographer: The Wedding Filmmakers
Ceremony Venue: Fairview Coffee Estate
Reception Venue: Trademark Hotel, Nairobi
Jewellery: Kapoeta by Ambica
Shoes: Public Desire
Hair and Makeup: Meera Shah
Suit and Shoes: NX Tailors, Mumbai