We were so thrilled to be able to help plan & celebrate our friends Racheal & Rochan Sankar back in November 2012! They had such an extravagant wedding that it took an entire weekend of events to celebrate! From the two beautiful ceremonies at the Double Tree Hotel & the Mad Men themed reception at the Bently Reserve in Sacramento, CA, we’re dedicating TWO posts to this wonderful occasion! This first post is dedicated to the wedding ceremonies. Yes, you read that correctly!
Having met through mutual friends, Racheal & Rochan were able to overcome the long distance concerns through phone calls getting to know one another until they met and uncovered their special connection. It was then that they knew they were meant to be, with Rochan later proposing at the place where they first met!
Fast forward to their wedding! As both Racheal & Rochan come from their respective Hindu religious sects, it was important to them and their families that they have ceremonies to honor each of their traditions. (Racheal comes from an Indo-Fijian background; Rochan comes from a South Indian Brahmin background.)
First came the South Indian ceremony, which was designed with red drapes and traditional red & white flowers hanging from the mandapam. Our favorite part of the ceremony is when they sit on the Oonjal, which symbolizes the couple facing life’s challenges together. After this, each family offers their blessings as they take their steps around one another to show their first “steps” together as husband and wife. [Also known as the Saptapadi (Seven Steps) and Ammi Midithal (Stepping on the Stone).]
Later that evening, the Indo-Fijian wedding was filled with romance; Crystals hanging down from the mandap, red rose petals circling around the aisle, which was also lined with floating candles & rose petals in glassware. This service was a bit more elaborate, with a more pronounced entrance of the bride and groom. [Rochan arrived on a horse, which is a typical Indian tradition.] Once both arrived and sat in the beautiful mandap with their families, they spoke their vows as they walk around in circles. The first four circles signify four goals of life: Dharma (moral duty), Artha (wealth), Kama (love), and Moksha (salvation). The final three symbolize their union of Mind, Body and Soul. The ceremony concludes with the Sindoor and Mangalsutra (Red Vermillion and Sacred Thread). They are tied together as Rochan places the Mangalsutra around Racheal’s neck, which symbolizes their commitment.
See below for some additional images captured by The Memory Journalists. They did an amazing job conveying the love & emotions that were present with this amazing couple and their family & friends! Also, a big thanks to all of the other amazing vendors!