Jaya & Matt’s Wedding Ceremony Highlights
After two days of big events, Jaya and Matt were certainly ready to officially be married – well, they did not have to wait much longer! Saturday morning arrived!
Jaya started her hair and makeup promptly at… 5am? You know what they say… sleep is for the weak! Up bright and early with the bride was Kirsten Bonilla of Shear Brilliance Salon and makeup done by the talented Fawn Monique. Shayosa Events arrived bright and early as well to keep the events of the day on task and on time. After her ceremony outfit was draped, Jaya carefully put on the silver wedding anklets she borrowed from her Grandmother (whom also wore them on her wedding day!). They shimmered and sparkled in the early morning sun. We posed some family photos and the the bridal party rushed off to the venue for Matt’s Barat. After a quick prayer, Jaya was ready to venture off to Camelback Resort to marry the man of her dreams!
Watching Matt get ready for the ceremony was a blast. Even though the clothes were an Indian fashion, the colors, and style fit Matt’s personality to a “T.” His outfit consisted mainly of a gorgeous embroidered coat, and some really snazzy pointed golden shoes. After quickly getting dressed, a gift appeared for him brought by the ring bearer, Jaimin. Sitting together, they opened the box to find a brand new pair of personalized “chucks.” If you don’t know, “chucks” are Matt’s favorite type of shoe and the origin of his nickname “chucks man.”
After getting ready, Matt and his family headed down to the front of Camelback Resort where he met all of his friends and family as they prepared for the baraat. A baraat is a fantastic dance party where the groom’s friends and family escort the groom to the ceremony. In this situation, the baraat was extra special — for Jaya’s incredibly talented brother DJ’ed the baraat with an awesome mix of both Indian classics and western favorites. Lead by Matt’s father, the entire groom’s side danced and partied their way from the parking lot to the main entrance of Camelback Resort. Though it’s traditional to be ushered in via horse or elephant, Matt instead chose to parade in on the back of pickup truck. From this height, he could look up and see the hotel guests standing on their balconies watching the party. As the baraat got closer to the main entrance Jaya’s family rushed out of the hotel and joined the celebration as it made its way underneath the main car port of Camelback Resort. Once under cover, the dancing continued until it was time for Matt to enter the resort and be officially welcomed by Jaya’s family.
As Matt entered Camelback Resort he was welcomed by Jaya’s parents and priests, from Sringeri Temple. He and his family was welcomed with gifts of sweets and in return Matt’s family presented small gifts. The ceremony is short but sweet and establishes the start of the wedding ceremonies for the day. From the lobby of the hotel they danced up to the ceremony location where Matt, his family, and Jaya’s parent’s officially entered the ceremony space down the fabulous catwalk style runway. Once seated, with assistance of the Priests, Jaya’s parents welcomed Matt into their family, with a series of small rituals. Each piece of the ceremony is precise, and is soaked in meaning which represents the newly formed relationship between the groom and his new family. After this ceremony, a cloth is brought between him and the chair where Jaya will sit after she enters.
As Jaya entered the front of aisle with her uncles, it felt as if time stood still. Large spotlights highlighted her trek down the raised aisle towards Matt. Though his eyes were hidden by a cloth, you could see him nervously smile as he felt his bride approach the front of the room. Elegant Affairs really knew how to wow Jaya and Matt’s guests with the elaborate setup of the Camelback Resort ballroom. Pinks and oranges flooded the raised stage and flowers were dropped everywhere they could be. Roses draped from the top of the backdrop and orange carnations created a diamond pattern behind the seats that Jaya and Matt would sit in for the ceremony. Rose petals and floating candles flanked the raised aisle to complete the romantic atmosphere.
Ambrosial Films helped capture the many details of the ceremony. I cannot wait to see the expressions of pure joy captured in motion as the ceremony cloth dropped between the bride and the groom and they placed the flower necklaces around each others necks. Indian wedding ceremonies are full of many many traditions – so I will just touch on a few key points – specifically my favorite part of Jaya and Matt’s ceremony! I love it when the Priest gave them the colored rice. Rice is sprinkled over the newlywed couple to bless them with a prosperous married life, and though there was much of that, my favorite part was when the Priests had Jaya and Matt play a wedding game to see who could throw the most rice over the other’s head (my best estimate from my research says this game who will be the dominant one in the relationship – I’m not sure who won, it might have been a tie!). I also really enjoyed when Jaya and Matt gave each other a big high five after exchanging their wedding bands.
So many traditions! As the ceremony came to an end (it was approximately two hours from when Matt entered the ballroom to when they exited together as husband and wife), the newlyweds participated in a vidhi ceremony (another one of my favorite parts!). This can be a very emotional time to the day as the bride traditionally says good-bye to her family and friends to head off to her new life with her husband. Fortunately for Jaya, she and Matt were just headed to the Temple and up to the top of the mountain for wedding portraits with us – so good-bye would only be until they arrived back at Camelback Resort for their wedding reception later that evening.
Here we go! Ceremony highlights as promised! I can’t wait for you to see the amazing portraits we created at the State Park at the end!
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