Dholki party

I was recently asked to take photos at a dholki party that a friend of my sister’s was having. A dholki is a party that takes place before a wedding which involves dancing and singing traditional songs to the beat of a drum – a dholki. The event was held in a private space in a restaurant meaning that we would be able to have good food and then have a space for the entertainment. Dholkis are mainly for women (and young children), giving the women a chance to let their hair down without any inhibitions.

The theme of the event was peacock feathers with colours pulled out to decorate other parts of the space which I really liked.

The bride-to-be’s friends set up dessert tables near the entrance that I though were really creative and colourful. I thought the popcorn was a nice way to keep the kids happy until food was served. I also loved the cake shaped in a cushion.

After everyone had dinner cushions, the drum and song books were placed together so that everyone could sit and sing songs together.

Once everyone had sung enough songs, the floor space was cleared so that people could dance. The bride and her friends had choreographed a few dances together, which was fun to watch.

It was a fun evening and a nice way to give women close to the bride-to-be a chance to spend time together with the her and her family.

2018 Highlights

As 2018 draws to a close, it’s natural to reflect back on the year. I hope that you all have had a significant and positive one. 2018 for me has had some highs, such as having a new niece join our family, starting a new job, as well as experiencing fun, new things such as taking a candy making course. I’ve also been able to visit new places and had a break away with my family. My lows have been feeling unmotivated and uninspired at times to post on my blog, and wondering if it’s still relevant. I have also felt like the world is passing me by and that I have so much I still want to do.

I leave you with some of my favourite photos of the 2018 and I wish you all happy New Year and with the hope that 2019 is one of fullfillment, happiness and adventure for all of us.

Winter Wedding

I went to a wedding recently of a couple that are close to my family. The venue was prettily decorated and everyone was dressed in their best to help celebrate the happy day with the couple.

The bride and groom made for a handsome couple, and I loved how the bride’s hands had beautiful henna on them and were embellished with some sparkly jewellery.

Everyone had a great evening and I hope the couple have a happy, healthy future ahead of them.

Iconic use

I saw this iconic route master yesterday in London. They’re not used for public transport anymore but I think it’s great that this one has been hired for a special wedding party.

Routemaster bus

Along with the bus there was this slick, classic looking car which I’m guessing was waiting to whisk away the bride and groom after the ceremony.

Classic car

I love seeing iconic, classic artifacts be part of special occasions and still valued, even if they aren’t needed every day.

Sea green and pearls

I recently bought a new outfit for a family wedding and I love the sea green colour and the details of the sparkly beads set off against the simple white, creamy pearls.

pearls

I really enjoyed wearing the outfit on the day and feeling the fabric swish as I walked

sea green

I hope to be able to wear this again at a family party or dinner soon

My sister’s wedding

So, I’ve guided you through all the preperations and pre-wedding parties and events that have been leading up to the ‘Big day’, and I can now finally share some of the pictures. The weather was nice and bright and although the wedding was indoors it really helped put everyone in a good mood. The room we hired was set up by the venue and it looked really good. The stage was ready for the bride and groom, tables set for the guests and what I especially loved were large rose balls of vibrant red on the head table

There were other nice touches that we added too (aside from the fruit and sweet tables). My sister picked out her favour boxes which whilst took us ages to put together and then fill with tasty treats, I thought looked elegant and really pretty. There were also welcome drinks for our guests to help themselves to while they socialised

But the thing that really stole the show (apart from the bride of course) was the beatiful wedding cake made my talented sister. She made the cake and the edible lace to go onto it and also made some matching cupcakes to help set the cake off. My sister’s friend made the swirly cupcakes to add to the cake table to help fill it out

My nieces and nephews looked really cute; tuxes for the boys and white flouncy bridesmaids dresses for the girls. (I don’t have great pictures of the girls as they didn’t stand still long enough). The rest of us were smartly dressed too; suits for the men and pastel coloured outfits for the ladies

In South Asian culture the bride traditionally wears red on her wedding day and in keeping with this tradition my sister spent weeks designing her outfit. She decided to make her oufit in a deeper shade of red but to make it look more modern and show some of her personality she added stripes of bright colours at the hem of her skirt and around the edges of her scarf.

On the day, dressed up in her beautiful outfit and made up by the professional makeup artist and hair stylist, my sister looked stunning. I can’t show you pictures of my sister’s face but here’s how her outfit looked with gorgeous accessories

And with her groom, they made for a handsome couple

All the preperations leading up to the wedding were really stressful, but it was worth it, as on the day everything went well and the bride and groom looked happy and seemed to enjoy the day, with everyone else looking like they were having fun too.

I wish them both well amd may they be really happy together and enjoy the adventure that lies ahead of them.

If you’d like to see the really good, professional photographes of the wedding then you can see them on my sister’s blog

For my other posts on my sister’s wedding see the links below:
Bridal shower – Vintage
Bridal shower – 1920s
Henna party
Fruit tables

Colourful fruits of labour

For my younger sister’s wedding day we thought it would be a nice touch to have a fruit table for the guests. We asked the catering company if they would be able to provide one for us but at a price of £400 (for fruit!) we said thanks, but no thanks! So, me and my older sister decided to have a go ourselves and as me and my sisters are quite a creative anyway

The day before the wedding day, my sister and I went to the local grocers and fruit stalls in our area and brought a whole range of fruits to give us different shapes, colours and sizes for our table.

As my sister’s wedding was an evening affair, my older sister and I got together in the morning of the wedding day and started prepping the fruit. We washed and cut up the fruit to make it easy and ready to eat

fruit

We then started placing the prepared fruit neatly in flat plastic trays that would help make the fruit not only look good but also make it easy to transport to the wedding venue.

We added small bunches of grapes and slices of oranges to the cut pieces of watermelon and melon, to add colour and also help fill the gaps.

My sister also had a good idea to make small cups of fuit that people can just take away. We used the leftover bits of watermelon, melons and grapes and added strawberries on top. She did this in a rainbow colour order which I thought looked great.

We had asked the venue to provide us with a couple of extra tables with tablecloths for us to use for our fruit. I got to the venue early and set this up before the guests arrived.

At previous parties and events my sisters have always set up a pretty sweet table for guests to enjoy. They decided they would like to do one for the wedding too to sit alongside the fruit table. In the weeks running up to the wedding we all kept an eye out for any sweets that fit our colour theme; red, gold and white (to match the bride). We then put them in colour blocks in various clear pots we had to make it all look neat when put together. I think the birdcages with the roses threaded through them are an especially nice touch and help bring the whole table together.

I think we did a good job (even if I do say so myself) and I think the bride was happy and the guests enjoyed it too, as most of it was eaten. We learnt that we can use our creative ideas to put together something that is well presented and enjoyed by all, at the fraction of the cost. I’d love to hear what you think of our efforts and if you have any other good ideas.

My sister’s hennaed hands

I’ve been trying to post more frequently but things have been super busy over the last few months with Eid, weddings and birthdays, (not to mention dodgy internet connections which hasn’t helped either!), but hopefully it seems a bit calmer now which means that I can get up to speed with my posts.

I wanted to share more pictures from my younger sister’s wedding that took place a couple of months ago. In Pakistan and other South Asian countries it is tradition for the bride-to-be to decorate her hands and feet with henna/mehndi a couple of nights before the wedding. The design my sister chose was intricate and very delicate and with the steady, skilled hands of the mehndi artist it came out beautifully

These patterns soon became much more complex and full, with henna being applied on both sides of my sisters’ hands and parts of her arms. You can click on the pictures below to view larger images, and close ups, (maybe if you look close enough you’ll find the name of the groom which he is supposed to look for on the night of the wedding).

henna

I didn’t get a chance to have any henna applied to my hands, but a number of the guests did, including my baby niece who had a butterfly pattern applied (and which lasted about 10 minutes before it got smudged).

I think the finished result of my sister’s hennaed hands was beautiful, reminding me of lace gloves with intricate, delicate patterns. My sister kept the henna on until the following morning before washing it off to make sure the dye was as dark as possible, which you will be able to see soon in photos that I am hoping to post of the wedding

My sister’s Henna party

So I’m finally allowed to post some pictures of my sister’s wedding and I thought I’d start with the Mendhi/Henna party. The mendhi or henna party is where the women of the bride’s family get together to have one last fun party before the big day. Often the women of the groom’s family are also invited and are asked to bring the henna which is then applied to the bride’s hands in preparation of the wedding day.

The henna party is usually bright and colourful and my sister wanted a peacock themed affair so we spent months looking for anything that would fit the theme.

We decided on purples, blues, greens and golds and added small peacock feathers to really bring out the theme. The candles are lit and the tray of bangles and henna brought in with the bride as she is brought into the party by family and friends.

Me, my sisters and my sister-in-law decided to add a tasty aspect to the party by having a sweet table. I thought the biscuits made by my sister-in-law and the cupcakes by my younger sister were especially pretty

As the evening went on the usual traditions were carried out; feeding the bride something sweet and giving some money to charity in her name, singing traditional wedding folksongs and dancing (unfortunately I can’t show you photos of the singing and dancing)

We all had a really fun time, and the bride enjoyed herself too, with friends and family and being the centre of attention of course! My photos haven’t come out as well as I would have liked as the lighting wasn’t great, but if you want to check out the professional photographer’s photos which have come out really good, then you can head over to my sister’s blog

Sneak peak

I’ve been itching to post some photos of my younger sister’s wedding now it’s all over but I don’t want to spoil the surprise as I know she wants to be the first to showcase the exciting event, so while I wait patiently (well, kind of), here’s a sneak peak of a couple of pics

I know these don’t give much away but hopefully more to come soon