Day 2 of Ruth and Raja’s epic Melbourne wedding began with the sacred and traditional art of henna painting.
A Hindu wedding custom, it involves a henna artist drawing extravagant designs of flowers and the sun on the bride’s hands, wrists and ankles (take a peak at the first 30 seconds of the video above and you’ll see what I’m talking about). The beautiful swirling henna patterns were soon complimented with hair and makeup, flowers, and a beautiful red, flowing Indian sari. Ruth looked just stunning and naturally, it lent for some great pre-ceremony shots.
Meanwhile, Hindi tradition was being bestowed upon Raja as his father prepared him for the ceremony.
The southern Indian ceremony was a vibrant and exciting experience filled with fire and smoke, fruit and grains, blessings and sacrificial gifts in a two-hour long procession led by the Hindi priest. The most significant moments were signified with intensified playing by the ceremonial band of trumpets and tablas. The procession through the gardens of the Melbourne Museum was a special highlight and the whole ceremony involved a lot of family members and dear friends partaking in the rituals. After the exchanging of flower wreathes, the sari-clad bridal party and their guests marched through the grungy streets of Fitzroy – an eye-opening scene for the casual pub drinker.
The reception was held in the great dining hall of the Fitzroy Town Hall. Some of the highlights were the cutting of the most mammoth of cakes ever, the gelato bar that just didn’t seem to run out of gelato, Espresso martinis on masse, the most wonderful mix of dances that made up a creative and hilarious first dance, traditional Bollywood dances who warmed up the dance floor and the fantastic Indian DJ who brought it all home. All up, a wonderful day and night of unity, tradition, cultural fusion and celebration.
It was a truly epic two day wedding, the Hindu Ceremony following Ruth & Raja’s Christian Wedding Ceremony, on the first day.