With an ever-increasing number of Asian Weddings being inter-faith and inter-cultural, couples need to find new and unique ways to adapt traditional Asian weddings traditions, combining them with different flavours and customs to create a wonderfully distinctive celebration that says “you” on every level. Your Dream Shaadi, UK’s Elite Online Asian Wedding Magazine shares a few tips with our readers.
- Respect, respect, respect. Your spouse-to-be probably has some pretty strong ideas about what’s traditionally supposed to be in a wedding, as do you. Do what you can to incorporate both of your traditions, religions and cultures in a respectful manner. It may make the ceremony last a little longer than usual, but who cares? Your wedding will not only be inclusive, it will be memorable to your guests. And isn’t that what you ultimately want?
- Dual ceremonies: As beautiful as we think fusion ceremonies are, if both cultures cannot be comfortably accommodated in one ceremony, it is possible to hold two ceremonies, which can be held either on the same day, the next day or a week apart. It can be expensive, but often the best way of bridging the gap between two religions and avoiding offence to either family.
- Food for thought. Be imaginative with your catering, have food, which represents both your cultures, go for a fusion cuisine menu or go all out with a multi cuisine buffet so there’s something for everyone. If there are any foods that offend a particular cultural tradition – ensure that this can be served in a discrete way that will not upset either family, particularly elderly family members. An experienced Asian wedding caterer will be able to offer you loads of options on how to blend two cultures in one menu.
- Fusion fashions. By having your wedding outfit’s custom made with a local bridal wear designer, you can create a truly stunning outfit that incorporates both family’s cultures. Ideas often explored are an English wedding dress, adorned with eastern embroidery or an eastern lengha (corset, long skirt and stole) styled in western fabrics and embroidery. Men can opt for a sherwani (long jacket with a Nehru collar), worn with a waistcoat, wing collared shirt and cravat for a truly dashing and debonair look.
- Décor & Theming. Mixed marriages present the opportunity to be truly imaginative with your wedding décor and themes. Experiment with silk drapes, flowers, lighting effects and chair covers and props like pillars, indoor fountains, statues and floating candle urns to create a theme that merges together both your cultures. (Check out some of the fantastic Asian wedding decor companies in our directory who will be able to transform your wedding venue into an ethereal wonderland)
- Music & Entertainment. Try and merge the two cultures by experimenting with various types of music. Choose music that is a sure hit across the board. up beat chart music, salsa, bhangra and Arab music usually go down a treat, regardless of the culture of your guests and you could really spice things up by having a live dance class for any unfamiliar music genres to keep the guests entertained. Other creative ideas include a jazz band or string quartet playing western pieces and, for example, Bollywood or middle eastern tunes.