On Saturday just gone, Martin caught me doing a celebratory jig, complete with song in our dining room. When I say ‘celebratory jig’, what I actually mean is me jumping/shuffling around like a bit of a loon. And when I say ‘complete with song’, what I actually mean is some high-pitched squealing. And from this high-pitched squealing, the only words Martin could decipher were “Birmingham”, “The One” and “its ready”!
Yes ladies (and gents), The One is officially ready. Le eeek! But more on that later…
These past two weeks have been quite productive on the wedding front. Not only is The One waiting for me, but a venue has also been booked for my henna party. Hooray.
When Martin and I got engaged, I was adamant that out of all the ceremonies, celebrations and merriment we could have, I had to have a henna party (otherwise known as a mehndi). I really truly think this has always been my favourite part of past family weddings that I have attended. They are always so much fun and other than the obvious henna-painting-on-hands that goes on, there is a really sweet ceremonial aspect (purely cultural as opposed to religious) where the bride is blessed to have a long and prosperous marriage.
*Image credits: With thanks to Alison Groves Photography.
Plus I get to have henna painted on my hands (both sides) and feet. Now I love henna. I really really do. I think it looks so amazing, the more intricate the better. Whenever it is Eid and I can, I always have some put on my hands. Even though when it starts to wear off, it fades and looks a bit grubby like you haven’t washed your hands properly, I still love it! I love the smell. I love how when it dries, your hand gets really stiff and then it starts to flake off a bit and you catch a glimpse of the colour underneath. And even better, I love it so much when the morning after you have it put on, the henna has stained so darkly, you don’t think it will ever come off.
*Image credits: With thanks to Mark Osborne Photography.
One of the myths involved with henna is that the darker the colour the henna turns out, the more your husband-to-be will love you! That is the reason why, even after its application the henna is kept on overnight to get a deeper, darker color on the palms. Traditionally, after her marriage, the bride is not supposed to do any household work till the henna fades out completely. Now that is something I could get on board with!
*Image Credits: SnapzPhotography
I’m not a fan of the new henna designs that are happening, with glitter and diamantes and bits and bobs stuck all over your hands and arms. No siree, I am old school. Just plain old henna for me thanks. So I’ll be going retro all the way! I like to wind my Mum up sometimes and tell her that I am going to have it going all the way up my arms, like sleeves or something and then all up my legs to my knees! Thinking about this now, I reckon I would look a bit of a plonker, lying on the beach on my honeymoon with henna “sleeves” and “socks”. Heh!
A restaurant has been booked for my henna-fest for the Wednesday before our wedding. I should probably mention at this point that my mehndi will be ladies only. Men can also be invited, but my Mum and I decided to do this just for the ladies as we can have more fun that way! Martin has decided that he will be doing manly things whilst the mehndi is happening – like eating steak and drinking beer!
*Image Credits: SnapzPhotography
For the mehndi I will be wearing something called a khara duputta. The simplest way to describe it is trousers with a long shirt over the top and wrapped over my shoulders and around me is a really long shawl thingy. Bet I have really painted a picture for you guys haven’t I?!
What I am wearing is pretty old-school and traditional, khara duputta’s don’t tend to be worn a lot anymore. I am pretty sure I am right in saying that it’s the traditional bridal wear of a region in India called Hyderbad, where my mum’s family originates from. Many brides tend to wear something a bit simpler for their mehndi’s but I think my Mum got a bit over-excited and when she insisted I wear one, I just went with it and thought “awesome, another amazing outfit to wear”. I am easily swayed.
Image Credits: Fotowala, India.
Mine is currently being made for me in Pakistan and alls that I can tell you about it is that it is magenta and emerald green. Sounds like something from Oz to me!
So yeap, like the utter nerd I am, after getting home from booking the restaurant, I took great delight in crossing off “sort mehndi” from my list!
And I believe this brings us full circle back to The One. Could someone please explain to me where the time has gone since May when I ordered it? Where have I been? What have I been doing? I think seeing it for the first time and knowing that that version of it is mine and not a stock version will make the 22nd July 2011 seem even closer. And even more real. God I hope it fits. And that I still love it. I’m super nervous, nauseous and excited about it all at the same time!
I have made an appointment to go and try it on and collect it on the 5th December. So by the time you guys will be reading this, I will be t-minus 3 days….eeeeeep!
Your henna-loving real bride