Helen and Deepak’s Taiwanese – Indian Wedding | The Estate on the Halifax
Helen and Deepak are from Chicago. They selected The Estate on the Halifax because they loved that The Estate was fairy tale-like and incredibly unique property!
When asked about the details of planning their destination wedding, Helen says, “It’s more common to see an interracial- mixed couple today, but I do have to say Taiwanese and Indian- very uncommon! Our theme of East and South Asian is really driven by our desire to incorporate our upbringing and families into our special day. Both red and gold are lucky colors in Indian and Taiwanese cultures.
We also wanted to make sure our day was unique including incorporating different traditions from both cultures (like having 3 different dresses, different ceremony traditions, different cultural dances), and Helen/Deepak Flair (like having an awesome Pool/ hot tub after party, glass elevator entrance to dance party, and we even had a friends and family talent show the night before!)
Much of the wedding had to be DIY since it was a Taiwanese- Indian wedding. We ended up just overloading our relatives’ bags filled with Taiwanese and Indian items to outfit the wedding. It was so fitting and clicked so well with these two cultures- they’re actually very similar just expressed in different ways. It was a lot of fun seeing everything merge together.”
Helen had henna painted on the palms of her hands before the wedding. Hindu women have their hands painted with henna for good luck before a wedding. If the color remains it means that the husbands love will remain strong.
Before the wedding Deepak and his groomsmen went through a hazing – “picking up the bride” games which is essentially going through a series of challenges in order to prove his love and worth to come pick Helen up to go to the ceremony! The bridesmaids started the hazing by “icing” all the groomsmen!
The object of the game is to shake all the ping pong balls out of the tissue box
Helen and bridesmaid, Ramona, watch the hazing ritual from upstairs in Agitha’s Cottage
Deepak and his grromsmen donned Hello Kitty tattoos, tiaras, and magic wands to dance to “Put a Ring on It” as part of the “Picking up the Bride” hazing fun
Deepak passed all the tasks the bridesmaids set before him and was allowed to come see Helen before the ceremony!
As the guests entered the wedding site they put strands of jasmine blooms in their hair and sacred water sprinkled upon their heads
Helen entered the ceremony with her mother under the cover of an umbrella to ward off evil. She delivers Helen to her father who walks her the rest of the way down the aisle to Deepak.
Look closely and you will see a tiny Hello Kitty on Helen’s nail 🙂
Saptapadi: The groom holds the bride right hand as she leads him around the fire three times in a clockwise direction, signifying her determination to stand first beside her husband in all happiness and sorrow. Fire is the eternal witness for the bride and groom’s commitment to each other.
Then it’s time for the exchange of the decorative or ornamental gifts. For this, the bride is seated on a chair with her feet resting on a stool to symbolize that their future life together will be good with no worries.
Mangalya Dharane: One of the most important events of a hindu marriage. The groom ties the mangalasutram (Thread of Goodwill), a sacred necklace with the mangalyam (black and gold beads) around the bride’s neck. The sacred necklace symbolizes commitment, safety and security offered to the bride by the groom as he asks her to share in a long and happy married life with him. The groom secures the necklace by tying three knots There is one knot for each aspect of the body–the physical body, the astral essence and the incarnational soul. It also stands for the three aspects of commitment: believing it, saying it and executing it.
Sambandha Male: The exchanging of garlands begins the solemnizing of the union. It signifies reciprocal commitment to and mutual acceptance of each other. Jaimala is made out of flowers and thread. Flowers symbolize happiness, enthusiasm, excitement, aspiration, zeal and beauty, whereas thread is a medium to secure all these feelings and emotions. Just as the thread never leaves the company of flowers, even though flowers after sometime loose their charm and luster, the same way wedded couple should never leave each other when they face ups and downs of life and must always move ahead with mutual understanding, love, respect, trust, faith and passion.
There is lots of laughter as Deepak’s mother rearranges the garland because Deepak put it on Helen upside down
Tea Ceremony: This time-honored exchange was created to show respect for the family. The bride serves tea to the groom’s family. After each elder takes a sip, they hand the couple a “lai see” (a lucky red envelope), which usually contains money or jewelry. The envelopes are placed on the platter that holds the teacups.
Aaseervatham – Blessing of the Couple
The Aalathi is performed by several female family members. It is done by circling a tray containing turmeric water and a piece of lit camphor around the bride and groom to ward off any obstacles.
Helen says that this was the most comical moment of the wedding for her. “During the ceremony, the bride is supposed to smash a piece of roof tile to bring good luck and fortune to the couple. I was so worried that I might not break it and bring us bad luck. I ended up picking my dress up and STOMPING really hard on it. The funniest part was Deepak pretending i was the Hulk and saying “Helen Smash!”
Cocktail hour is held in the center lawn by Snow White’s cottage
The groomsmen all grab pieces of the smashed roof tile and throw it to the ground for a photo of them wishing the couple “extra good luck”
Helen and Deepak decide to leave a piece of themselves in the lake by skipping pieces of the roof tile across the water
Helen and Deepak have their first dance under the stars to “The way I am” by Ingrid Michaelson
Helen and Deepak chose to do Knots For Love – “Wedding bracelets the perfect way to share your love with each other, your bridal party, family and your guests too! Something that ties you all together. A delightful favor for giving. The exciting custom wedding bracelets from , these handmade, colorful bracelets are made in Costa Rica and provide a great way to have your guests tie the knot with you, a way to share the day and years to come with these beautiful bracelets handmade with your choice of color, embellishments and design”
Photographer: Mark Dickinson Photography (us!)
Dress Designer: Maggie Sotero
Shoes: Badgley Mischka
Thank you to everyone who participated in this amazing wedding! Please like and share this blog post!