CHIT CHAAT: The not so Big Fat Indian Wedding

Recently I attended a Chinese wedding reception and although I had a great time, I couldn’t help but compare it to our desi style receptions. I love Indian wedding receptions and although the new desi  generation is getting more creative with each passing season, there are still some major trends that are followed and I think it’s time to start looking at ways to make your reception memorable but for all the right reasons.

There were some key factors that I truly enjoyed that night, but there was a small part of me missing some desi elements. For starters there were only about 150-200 guests there as opposed to the 500 guests we mainly see at an Indian reception. This was refreshing as it didn’t seem overwhelming when you walked in and it also made you feel like you were important enough to the bride and groom to be invited. Sometimes at an Indian reception, you hardly know the couple that is getting married, but since your “aunty” invited you, you usually feel obligated to go.

So as soon as we entered the elegant restaurant venue, which looked a lot nicer than the average banquet all, we were greeted by both the bride and groom who seemed calm yet happy at the same time. They took their time welcoming us and filling us in about their wedding that took place earlier that day. This was nice as we have all been to some desi receptions where when you show up, there are unfamiliar faces greeting you as you walk in, or sometimes there is no one there at all. Normally guests are waiting around for the bride and groom to show up and if you accidentally do run into the bride and groom outside the hall before they make their grand entrance, the couple usually seems frantic and rushed as they are aware that they are late and need to go inside to get things started. So taking those things into consideration, showing up at this wedding made us feel like VIP’s as not only did we walk in and be greeted by the bride and groom, but they actually took time to converse and take some pictures with us.

The couple then walked us over to our table and that is one thing that I didn’t particularly care for, the assigned seating. Seating charts take time and effort to create and they do make your event look organized but the desi part of me, wants to be able table hop as I mingle with other guests that I know. But all in all, it worked out fine as we got to meet some great new couples that we probably would not have gotten to know if we were not sitting with them.

Food is huge in both cultures and I was told that every Chinese reception has at least 8 if not 12 courses planned for the guests.  It was nice not having to stand in a buffet line up and be served our food at the table. There were 12 courses in all and unfortunately I am not that adventurous when it comes to sampling different foods and so I passed on the infamous Shark fin soup, the fresh cut jelly fish and fish head curry. So although it was extravagant the way each course was presented and served, it was not fun if you were not eating the particular course as you had to wait until the others around you finished eating before the next course was brought out. But all in the all the food seemed delicious and was enjoyed by everyone, but I did miss not being able to select what I wanted to eat and the wait between each course was a tad annoying but at least there was ample wine on each table so it was fine. Also if you weren’t drinking wine the waiters were bringing cocktails right to you as soon as your glass was empty….beats waiting at the bar.

During the dinner, guests were called up to sing karaoke and that was quite exciting and fun to participate in. I especially enjoyed the middle aged Asian men singing pop songs, it was hilarious. I would love to see that incorporated into a desi reception, guests belting out Bollywood tunes and drunken uncles singing old Punjabi songs, it would be so entertaining!

Although the night was full of amazing food, drinks and conversation, I missed the dancing…there is dancing at every Indian reception. No matter what the theme is, or whether the couple is trying to do something new and unique, the one thing you can always count on is the dancing and I missed it. Where’s a good DJ when you need one? DJK was definitely needed that night, finishing the evening with some good tunes to rock out to would have been a perfect ending to a great night.

Overall I think both cultures have their unique trends and I was happy to have been able to embrace both. Going forward I think young couples should venture out and explore the different cultures out there and incorporate the best of both worlds when planning their special day.

For fresh ideas and unique wedding styling and decor, don’t forget to contact POSH Planners for all your event planning needs. And to keep your party rocking all night, contact the one and only DJK: (604) 807-7557 as he’s the hottest ticket in town for keeping your dance floor packed.  

Sangeeta Kaila – Sangeeta is the owner of Posh Planners, an event planning and styling company. www.poshplanners.com

 

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