thedelhibells: Haldi

Mehendi for blog1

Friday morning. I woke up with butterflies in my stomach. Today was the day the wedding festivities officially kick started at my home. By the time I got ready, guests were slowly beginning to fill the house. Breakfast was served, and then we proceeded with the Matkor ceremony. It was a quick, short one. The elders in the family guided us with what needed to be done.

I was dressed in the suit I had bought to wear when I first met the boy’s family. I just put on the brightest dupatta I could find to cover my head, and voila – the look for the puja was complete! I was told I should not keep my wrists empty, so I put on some bangles I had bought from Lajpat Nagar years back.

Mehendi for blog2
Matkor ceremony

Post the puja, my family members went over to the boy’s house with gifts for the boy and his family. This is called the Tilak ceremony at my place (it’s the equivalent of Sagan for a Punjabi household). While they were out, I sneaked a quick visit to the parlor to get my nails painted with my friends and sister in tow.

By the time we got back, it was time for Haldi to begin. I quickly changed into the yellow taant sari my mother had bought for me. Obviously, my mom helped with tying the sari. Ok, who am I kidding – she tied the entire thing 🙂

Full length pic of the taint sari
Full length pic of the taant sari

Haldi began with a visit from the boy’s family – they came bearing gifts for me. The visit was a sweet, but short one. They needed to rush back home as the Mehendi ceremony was starting at the boy’s house soon. After a small puja, I was finally seated next to my parents under the “Mandap” – mine was made at home using PVC pipes (the groom actually put it together!), which was then decorated with flowers. My father was the first one to apply haldi on me, followed by the rest of the family members. Haldi was a home-affair, with mostly relatives strewn across the house and lawn below.

Mehendi for blog3

Shortly after my relatives and friends had applied haldi on me, the chaos began. You see, in our house, there is literally a holi of haldi played! In a matter of a few seconds, the sound levels in the house increased by many a decibel. Evil laughter (“muahahaha! I’m going to getcha!”) and screams (“nahiiiii”) echoed throughout the house, and for a good 15 minutes – you could hear nothing but screaming and see people running. Everyone walked around armed with haldi, on the lookout for any faces that had not been smeared with yellow yet.

Mehendi for blog

Photographs by Tarun Chawla Photography

You can read the whole thedelhibells series here:

  1. Prologue
  2. Mata Ki Chowki
  3. Pre-Wedding Week
  4. Pre-Wedding Shoot
  5. Haldi
  6. Mehendi
  7. Sagan
  8. Sangeet
  9. Wedding
  10. Reception Preview
  11. Reception
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16 Comments

  1. ahh, that looks like so much fun. Even thought I don’t like haldi or “yellow stuff” as I call it, this ceremony was probably a lot of fun for you guys. Congratulation!
    P.S. I have been following your blog, but never commented. Thought today is the day!

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  2. wow! it must had being an amazing day…u look so beautiful..:)
    well my brother is getting married in a month and its an intercast marriage,just like yours..
    and both the families are confused about the rituals…my bhabhi is punjabi and we belong to uttrakhand…well there is no sagan in kumaonis ,we have teeka and the widaai too takes place the next day in the morning ..but as u mentioned in your blog the punjabis believe that widai should take place in ‘taro ki chaau me’..it has confused both the families…

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    1. Hi Sargam! Thank u! 🙂 Yes, rituals are a little bit different, but most are still the same. I guess the parents should talk it out and see which party is comfortable with compromising on which part of the ritual – I’m sure it will work out fine 🙂

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  3. Hey! That must have been an amazing day and you look beautiful throughout the whole wedding journey! 🙂 Also, I really liked all your outfits, especially your wedding outfit, really want to know where you got them from.

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