Anjana & Milan's Effervescent Telugu Gujarati Wedding {Texas}

April 19, 2015 - by Preeti

Today we have a special wedding feature. This couple got married exactly one year ago today!

And that means...

Happy first anniversary Anjana (Jenny) and Milan!

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They were married in Texas last year in a Telugu Hindu ceremony with Gujarati elements. They had a fun filled wedding with an out-of-this world wedding cake, South Indian games, garba, and a messy haldi ceremony.

And Jenny's wedding and pre-wedding outfits are to-die-for, but you'll have to scroll through the gallery to see them all!

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Jenny shares her wedding story with us.

As the youngest child of both families, the last several years have been filled with our cousins and siblings wedding festivities. We've danced, decorated, and now it was our turn to celebrate. The months leading up to the wedding were filled with shopping in India, spreadsheets, conference calls, FaceTime chats with vendors, DIYing, and of course hours of Pinterest research. 

Celebrations started on Wednesday with a Pellikoothuru at my parents' home in Beaumont, Texas and continued through the weekend in Houston.

On Thursday morning, I had my bridal mehendi applied, as our families worked on last minute preparations and tried to relax (but who could with so much excitement!?). On Friday morning, we held Milan’s Pithi Ceremony, where friends and family had fun smearing yellow haldi on his face and enjoyed getting mehendi applied.

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Friday night we kicked off the weekend with a Sangeet/Garba in honor of Milan’s Gujarati roots. The décor was bursting with royal colors, and we greeted guests with mango lassi and rose lassi welcome drinks. We set up festive food stalls for dinner with themed stations for North Indian, South Indian, and of course Tex-Mex entrees.

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Our caterer also created a unique dessert just for us: gulab jamun cheesecakes. Coordinated in pink and purple outfits, we danced the night away, equipped with dandiya raas sticks flown in from Gujarat. 

Saturday was the big day, with a traditional Telugu ceremony. Led by Milan’s sister, guests performed a choreographed dance at Milan’s baraat, while they sported red and black sunglasses customized with our hashtag, #shaadiJAM.

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Our amazing and supportive bridal party included our siblings and best friends, who wore coordinated sarees and kurtha pyjamas in pink and emerald green. The crowd went wild when our nephews pulled a white flower-covered wagon with our 9-month-old niece sitting inside down the aisle.

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Tell us about the wedding outfits

I wore two beautiful outfits for each entrance to the mandap. The first was a red and gold kanchipuram silk saree with gold jewelry, including the same gold waistbelt that my mom wore at her own wedding!

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During the ceremony, Milan’s mom gifted me with a second outfit to wear during the second entrance, a white lengha with red and emerald border, designed by me and custom made in India.

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We enjoyed many friendly competitions including a ritual called Thalambralu, where we showered each other with rice. Initially we took turns, but it got more entertaining as we started rushed to be the first to finish!

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The evening reception was a magical night to remember. We received an amazing gift – one of our favorite Bollywood songs beautifully composed and performed by Milan's brother-in-law, who is also Principal French Horn of the LA Philharmonic.

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My favorite part of any wedding is always the cake – and ours was the highlight of the weekend: six delicious alternating tiers of Italian cream with strawberries and chocolate ganache covered in gorgeous jewels and fresh roses.

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We are so thankful to all our family and friends from around the world who traveled to Houston to celebrate with us, especially to our parents who have showered us with love and support! 

What advice do you have for future brides/grooms-to-be?

Decide on what is important to you. Spend more time and resources toward on top priorities and delegate the rest.

For us, we both agreed our family and friends are our top priority. We were honored and humbled by celebrating our new start together with hundreds of our closest family and friends. We wanted them to feel as if they were coming to our house and were our guests. If we had to make a decision, we would ask “Is this great for us or our guests?” and if it was guests, we did it.

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With most guests coming from out of town, we provided a shuttle to and from the airport to ensure as soon as they landed, our guests were treated as if they were coming to our house. We held all events at our hotel to eliminate the need for rental cars or the stress of getting to shuttles on time. We held a fully stocked, large hospitality room where we also catered in non-event meals. Many were very appreciative of our emergency kit, stocked with items like hairspray, safety pins, Advil and Tums. With so many guests, we planned several activities and events so we could spend quality time with everyone. To us, those were some of the best times of the weekend!

When planning the big weekend, problems will arise. Distinguish between major issues and minor ones. When one of us had a problem to raise, we always took a deep breath and then asked, “Will this ruin our wedding?” “Are we choosing between two really good choices anyway?” “What will our guests appreciate more?” This helped us determine why it was a problem and ultimately brainstorm alternatives to still making this a great celebration with our family and friends.

Once the day comes, it’s key to enjoy it all and not let anything bother you. Few will notice if things didn’t go to your plan, but many will notice an unhappy bride and groom - so keep smiling!

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Thank you for sharing your wedding with us and we're so happy to see you celebrating your anniversary!

{Wedding Vendors}

Photo/Video: A&A Video // Cake: Roland's Swiss Pastry & Bakery // Decor: Decor One // Horse:  Houston Wedding Horses // Mehendi: Original Henna Company // Sangeet Caterer: Madras Pavillion // Reception Caterer: Bombay Palace // DJ: SAP Entertainment

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