Christian weddings in India's biggest city
A Bengali girl from Nagpur marrying a Mangalorean-Goan boy from Mumbai – now there’s a match you don’t see very often. For Urmi Chanda and Viren Vaz, media and software professionals respectively, the wedding was a gentle mingling of cultures without any of the hassles that tend to attach themselves to multi-cultural weddings.
Urmi has a very distinct style and fashion is one of her many pursuits, and yet she decided to opt for an understated white evening gown – a gift from a friend in the US who was unable to attend the wedding.
“I was a very thrifty bride, and didn’t see any sense in getting a lavish one made because I would wear it only once.“
A sensible move, as she had to think about outfits for her Hindu wedding in Kolkata, the reception in Nagpur, the court marriage as well as her Catholic wedding. Phew. Now here’s a couple that has celebrated their wedding all over India!
The gown was a bit of a surprise for everyone when it arrived as it was a size too big, halter-necked and cross-strapped at the back; the latter two a definite issue where the dress constraints for Catholic brides in Mumbai are concerned.
With help from her father, Urmi became her own designer and got to work on altering the gown. Armed with some fabric glue and diamante they dolled up the evening gown and veil; a sheer bolero stitched by a lady in Chembur adding to the elegance.
Everything came together in a month – quite a feat!
Shoes: strappy, low heels with white crystals from Bandra
Jewellery: Chunky American diamond pendant on a tight silver chain from Kolkata and a matching watch (to stick to the all white-no gold look).
Veil and tiara: Procured by Urmi’s mother-in-law
Urmi didn’t have to worry about bridesmaids and flower girls and Viren and his groomsmen (his brothers) took care of their bespoke suits at the brilliant NM Tailors in Hill Road, Bandra. All she needed to worry about (how enviable) their ties were – rich, striped numbers in brown, black and gold.
“I didn’t have any flowergirls or bridesmaids. Didn’t know any. The first Catholic wedding I was to ever attend in my life was to be mine!“
Viren and Urmi celebrated their Catholic wedding at Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, the groom’s parish church in Chembur. As her in-laws had taken care of all the arrangements, Urmi had less to deal with on D-Day (well, at least the Catholic one). The result, the lucky bride got to enjoy every bit of her very first Catholic wedding – not knowing what to expect from one, adding to her delight.
It’s lovely when weddings fall into place so smoothly. Like the wedding gown Urmi didn’t want to splurge on but didn’t want to wear second-hand or the way realistic expectations ended up adding character to the wedding rather than dimming its glow. Urmi and Viren’s wedding also had some wonderful people supporting their plans and working towards making them materialise – something couples dream for and rarely get.
“There is no limit to wanting, is there? I would have had a big fluffy number with an endless train if I could. But I think my dress, when it finally got done, looked rather nice, and most importantly, made me feel good.“
Urmi advises other Bombay brides, “Follow your gut and not the trend. Also, remember that the finery is for once. Keep it special, but practical.” And lastly, she highly recommends Bandra as the place to shop for brides in and around Mumbai.
Look at them, don’t they look dashing!
Like Urmi, would you like to tell the world about your special day? Check the Wish to Feature Here? page for more details!