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What You Need to Know About Indian Weddings

Updated: Jun 15, 2022

Exchange of garlands
Jaimala Ceremony

Every Indian wedding, we have planned has been a multi-day event that you will want to write home about, but if you are first time guest it could be a little overwhelming so here are a few things you can expect if you are a first-time guest at an Indian wedding. First, what to wear? Indian weddings are mostly Hindu but they can also be of the Islam or Jain faith or there my be no religion at all.

No matter what the religion if you have received an invitation, you'll have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the culture for the day (or three). I would say that the number one thing to make sure of when you come to your wedding attire is to make sure you wear color. Any bright, festive color (except Red or Black) is acceptable no matter the season is or where the wedding is taking place. If you want to be even more traditional then as a woman you might want to consider wearing a Lehengas (a two piece outfit usually consisting of a crop top and a high waisted full skirt) or a Saree (a long piece of fabric that you wrap around the body). Men could wear a Sherwani, which is a long coat like top. No matter what you decide, it's worth noting that traditional dress is not a requirement.

The pre-wedding and wedding day traditions will vary from region to region but there are a few traditions that you can expect to see at the majority of Indian weddings. Here is what we have witnessed in the majority of Indian weddings we have planned at Classic Wedding Designs. The Haldi ceremony is celebrated before the wedding and it is applied to the couple for good luck and beautification. The wedding ceremony itself will take place under a structure with four posts. Each post represents on of the four elements of water, fire, wind and earth and it is called a Mandap.

Brides at Indian weddings are usually going to be wearing lots of gold jewelry, however even this custom varies from region to region. Either way, be prepared to be in awe of the selection of gold and gemstones that will adorn the bride. Another Indian wedding tradition you can expect is a ritual fire. It will involve the couple walking around the fire before they share their wedding vows. Mehndi or Henna is an intricate design that usually starts at the calves and ends at the feel and is also applied from the brides elbows to her hands. Tradition says that the darker the color of the Henna, the more the mother-in-law or husband will love the bride.

Whether you want to showcase your Jewish, Christian or Hindu wedding traditions, or include no religion at all, that is totally up to you. Classic Wedding Designs is here to help you honor your culture—whether that means including Latin American traditions, African-American traditions, or Asian traditions like those seen at Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese or Filipino weddings, there's nothing more American than celebrating the diversity that beautifully unites us. Contact us so we can help you highlight your cultural differences.

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