The Biggest Mistakes South Asian Brides Make - And How You Can Avoid Them

2016 Sep 9 - by dulhan
Every bride makes a mistake or two when planning her big day. It's just a fact, and it's part of the whole process. With that being said, there are inevitable mistakes and then there are mistakes that are relatively easy to avoid.

South Asian weddings are almost always amazing - but the fact is, certain issues tend to come up at a lot of them...unless you take action to make sure they don't. Here are seven  of the biggest mistakes South Asian brides and grooms make - keep them in mind and you can certainly avoid them!

blue-gold-indian-gujarati-wedding-georgia-18Photo courtesy of Zamana Lifestyles


1. Not sticking to a clear timeline: Indian Standard Time is real. Most of us have probably experienced this: A wedding is scheduled to start at a certain time, but most of the guests show up late - and the bridal couple pushes their start time back to ensure the whole audience will be there to watch the ceremony. Our advice? Don't cater to lateness. Instead, warn your closest friends and family that you will start right on time, and get things going no later than 5-10 minutes after they're scheduled to take place.

2. Using the same vendors other members of the community use: If you live in an area that boasts a large Indian community, chances are you know about this: Often Indians will recycle the same few venues and vendors. While it's great to use people you know are reliable, it also causes some problems. If you hire the same caterer, florist, photographer and DJ many of your South Asian friends have also used, it might be hard for you to differentiate your wedding from theirs.

outdoor-california-indian-wedding-kevinlevuphotos-40Photo courtesy of Kevin Le Vu Photography

3. Over-inviting: Indian weddings are notoriously very, very large. Between all the community members and their families, your own friends, and overseas relatives, numbers can add up fast. I would urge you to trim your list as much as possible. Size constraints are very real, so you have to imagine how your venue would contain your guests if almost everyone showed up. Then get to work on editing your guest list.

4. Not explaining cultural customs to guests who might not be familiar with them: If you're having a religious ceremony, offer up a breakdown of the proceedings in a ceremony program. Your wedding web site is also a great place to explain your rituals: You can create a full schedule of events and explain the significance of each of them right there. This a great way to make your non-Desi guests feel like they understand what's happening.

5. Scheduling too many dances: If you're scheduling dance performances, try to keep them to a relative minimum. Nobody wants to sit through 19 dances no matter how entertaining they might be! Find a number and stick to it - and ask your friends to combine their dances into one medley if it's really hard for you to make cuts.

hawaii-indian-wedding-iqphoto-studio-30Photo courtesy of IQ Photo Studios

6. Asking too many people to speak: On a similar note, nothing bores your guests like too many speeches. Indian weddings often use up a full hour of the wedding just for these, and this  leaves guests feeling restless and irritable. I would suggest no more than four speeches/toasts.

7. Serving dinner too late: Here's where the timeline comes into play! Make sure you've scheduled dinner early on during the reception. If you don't, guests will get bored and may even leave right after they eat.