Maitra and Pradyut Pratap
Pradyut and I met when we were five and six years old. Our parents
are good friends since they went to college together and so we ended
up at each others' birthday parties. Our first argument was over
a mini-pizza snack at his birthday party, I was six years old and
had gobbled far too many for his liking. Fortunately, we've progressed
My family moved to Toronto later on, I went to McGill University
and though we met occasionally during that time when he would visit
from Carnegie Mellon where he was studying, we dated after we both
started working in Toronto. We live and work in Dubai—I work
for Unilever (brand marketing) and he works in investment banking.
His family is based in Dubai, so we quite enjoy it here.
Our wedding was held on January 5th,
2009 at the Leela Palace Kempinski, Bangalore. It was a mix of different
wedding traditions. My father is Bengali and my mother is Konkani
while my husband’s parents are Tamil Iyers. When planning
the ceremonies, we realised we have many similar wedding rituals.
I wore a kanjeevaram as it is the preferred saree of the Konkanis
and Tamils - with it I wore the Bengali crown.
Mahesh Shantaram http://thecontrarian.in/weddings/
I was given all the traditional Bengali bangles, while my sister-in-law
tied the Tamil mangalsutra for me. Konkanis have a necklace similar
to the mangalsutra called the daraai-mani which my mother's family
tied for me. Many of our friends from all over the world flew to
Bangalore to share the occasion with us. We had a wonderful time.
The wedding events included a Mehendi and Sangeet at the Taj in
Bangalore. I wore a golden yellow Neeta Lulla sari at the Mehendi,
while our Sangeet outfits were designed by Hassan Shehryar Yasin,
because we wanted something different from the typical ‘bling’
that is popular nowadays. He created a lovely high-necked salwar
kameez with intricate white on white embroidery as the base, layered
with gold embellishments. It was flowing and long, and when I walked
around, it swished. The feeling of a dress as it ‘swishes’
is delightful, you feel as if you're dancing on air.
courtesy: Mahesh Shantaram http://thecontrarian.in/weddings/
During the wedding ceremony
I wore a crimson kanjeevaram sari with the classic mango pattern.
I then changed into a shell pink Shahab Durazi sari with pearl embroidery.
Being the first article of clothing I wore as a married woman, it
remains one of my favourites. I liked it because it was understated
yet gorgeous. I wore it with three necklaces; diamond, ruby set
with diamonds and a long tear drop emerald necklace with matching
emerald earrings. The emerald set was a wedding gift from my mother's
brother and his family and was designed by my aunt and great-aunt
who passed away recently. The other diamond and ruby necklaces were
given to me by my parents. To complement the saree's pearl embroidery,
I wore pearl bangles. Of course I also had the shakha & paula
bangles that are characteristic of Bengali brides; one of my aunts
had measured my wrists prior to the wedding and had them made in
Calcutta. I consider myself extremely blessed for not only did my
family give me everything I wore during the wedding, they also took
the time to design, measure and personalize everything for me.
Our reception was at the Raffles in Dubai, and I wore a long fuschia
Dolce & Gabbana gown with a diamond set that my husband's family
gave me. Our wedding was one of most joyful times in my life, and
I remember it fondly. It was the ideal way to embark on our lives