Weddings

Anusha Kalyanam – An authentic Telugu wedding story!

By TGB Desk / On July 29th, 2016

Today, I am really very excited to write about this beautiful wedding. Reason? It’s not every day you see an authentic eco-chic Telugu wedding. But thanks to Anusha who sent us enough images and content to write a Coffee Table book! Was just kidding….in fact I have requested her to send as many pics as possible so that we all can take a peek at the blissful ethnic wedding.
Anusha’s father hails from a beautiful town called Machilipatnam, which is famous for gorgeous kalamkari and delicious laddus. After his marriage, he migrated to US of A and our lovely bride Anusha was brought up in the “land of opportunities”. When it was time for her marriage, it was decided that they would host the wedding in their home town and her paternal grand father’s house – a 150 year old ancestral home would be the wedding venue. It was also decided that the wedding would be conducted in an authentic Telugu style and in an eco-friendly way.
Hand painted invitation cards to traditional gorintaaku (instead of mehendi) to meals in banana leaves to using traditional flowers for decor…a beautiful wedding that left very little carbon footprint on the earth but a very memorable print on the hearts! Want to know more?
We would intersperse both text and pictures to narrate this graceful wedding story…

Adorable bride Anusha in traditional Telugu attire; The bride has done her own make-up (which is minimal). Her mother helped her with shopping for her outfits for the wedding and was her hair stylist. No one was specifically hired for this purpose.

Hand painted wedding invitation card; It has been exclusively hand painted for this occasion and no readymade template was used for making this card (sensitive info has been hidden)

It all started with making a canopy of palm leaves (thaataakula pandiri) and covering the entire street in front of the ancestral home.

Beautifully decorated main entrance to the home

Govu Maalakshmi ki Koti Dhandaalu – A cow is considered auspicious and is worshipped as a form of Godess Mahalakshmi

Seating arrangement for the guests

Lord Ganesha graces the wedding

                                      Living room in the ancestral home decorated for the occasion
The entire decor was envisioned by Sri Anand garu (bride’s father) and was executed with the help of Sri Satish garu in an authentic Telugu style. No artificial decoration items were used. Even the flowers that were used in the decoration were the ones we find in the backyard of any Telugu household – marigolds, chrysanthemums, Jasmines and mango leaves.

The guests were served sampradaya (traditional) Telugu Bhojanam (meal) in banana leaves and was served by the cousins and close relatives
Food for around 2000 guests was prepared on the day of the wedding at the venue by Sri. Jintan Sastry who has cooked during many occasions for the family in the past. Every day three meals and snacks were made for hundreds of guests. No plastic spoons or plates were used in the wedding.

A bunch of plantains used to decorate the wedding venue

Pasupu kottadam (Making of turmeric powder by grinding the turmeric roots the traditional way) by the married women; The festivities start with this ritual…

Traditional bridal shower – Bride Anusha and Lasya, her maid of honor (thoda pelli koothuru) in half-sarees with paaraani (alta or red colored liquid that’s applied to feet), Kalyana thilakam (wedding bindi) and bugga chukka (a black dot on the cheek to ward off evil). The bride chose to get traditional gorintaaku (paste made of fresh henna leaves) done instead of mehendi. The henna leaves were from the backyard of the ancestral home and it was applied by her mother Smt. Shanti the night before the wedding.
Auspicious Naadaswaram and Dolu at the ancestral home; Sri Tarigoppula garu has come sepecially for the occasion from Chennai with his team to perform
Coy bride in wedding attire in a veduru butta (bamboo basket) holding organic kobbarikaya (fresh coconut that isn’t painted or decorated) during the rituals; The basket was decorated with pasupu (turmeric) and kunkuma (vermilion) as is the custom
                                     Groom “Sai” during the rituals
                                     Terasella Ritual
                                     Mangalasutra dhaarana (Tying of the sacred necklace around the neck of the bride)
                                     Can you see the “dream-come-true” look on the face of the bride 🙂
                                     “Talambralu” ritual in progress
                                         Vara maala (Jai mala) ceremony
This is a delightful and fun-filled ritual where a finger ring is placed in a vessel full of water (mixed with flowers,turmeric and vermilion) and the bride & groom compete with each other to find it; They say who ever wins would be the dominating partner! Looks like our bride won the contest hands down!!! 🙂
                                     The beaming couple after marriage ceremony
Veda-Aaseerwachanam (Blessing by the vedic scholars by reciting the Vedic mantras) by Ghanaapati Vishnubhotla Suryanarayana garu & his students
Saradhaa Sayantram ( Cultural evening)
                                     Kuchipudi dance performance by our talented bride Anusha;
She performed for Sudha Raghunathan’s Thillana which is composed by Sri Lalgudi Jayraman in Revathy Raga. While her father likes Revathy raga, her in-laws like Kuchipudi dance – this is called perfect match!
Senior actor and writer Sri Tanikella Bharani garu enthralling the audience by reciting poetry
              “Sri Krishna” Ekapaatraabhinayam (solo performance) by Sri Gummadi Gopala Krishna garu; It was an awe-inspiring performance!
   Sri Anand garu and others respond by dancing to a song by Sri Tanikella Bharani; Looks like he can really make people dance to his tunes 🙂
   Sri Anand garu (father of the bride) who was responsible for planning the whole wedding and executing it very efficiently without any glitches.
Smt. Shanti garu – Mother of the bride
Groom Sai with the brother of the bride Arun
                                                                  Is there an ornament that can match the “smile”?!
Isn’t she gorgeous?! 🙂
Family members
From the bride – “It was truly a magical experience and I take with lifetime of memories the blessings of everyone that came. Everybody took utmost care to make it memorable from the time of arrival at my home country to the time I left for my home! We are very thankful to all those who helped us.”
Hope you guys enjoyed reading about this amazing wedding story!
Stay Happy!!

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