Portuguese Oriental Sports Club
Today I’m excited to share some beautiful spring photos from this Indian wedding at the Portuguese Oriental Sports Club. I am always a fan of photographing Indian weddings. I come from this culture and fully appreciate the impact a family makes on the wedding day as a whole. The colours and details are just so much fun to work with. These two had a grand multiday wedding extravaganza. This is Day 1 when Sharleen and Chris have their Hindu ceremony and officially marry. Day 2 is tomorrow which will include the wedding reception.
I had no idea the Portuguese Oriental Sports Club hosted weddings. It’s a little hidden gem on the outskirts of Cambridge, and it put together a beautiful event. The bride had a red carpet entrance with an aisle lined with red floral vases. This was one grand celebration.
My coverage of this Southasian Wedding started with morning prep at the bride’s home. It was just me and my videographer for the day so we bounced off each other throughout the day. Chris had a bit of a head start as he needed to be ready almost an hour before the bride. The groom’s arrival, or baraat, kicked off this Hindu wedding ceremony outside the Portuguese Oriental Sports Club. He arrived in a fancy sports car with his little dog in hand. There was a lot of dancing as the two families met and officially greeted each other. Father to father, mom to mom, sibling to sibling, and so on. The family had a small prayer for him before the bride arrived.
The venue had the entire room decorated including a beautiful mandap. The wedding mandap acts as a wedding alter in Hindu marriage ceremonies. This particular Mandap was quite elaborate with red and gold sequin drapery. Sharlene is actually the wedding planner behind Vows and Vacations. She specializes in destination weddings, so planning a local one for herself was a breeze. This wedding had so much going on. It was a portfolio piece all on its own. Her wedding dress was my favorite. I’ve never seen an Indian wedding dress with a terrain like that. When I was photographing it earlier that morning, it felt like it weighed twenty pounds. So kudos to Sharlene for maneuvering in that dress.
The parents joined the couple inside the mandap. The ceremony begins with lighting the fire. A Hindu marriage is a sacrament, not a contract. The bride and groom exchange floral garlands similar to how they exchange wedding rings. It expresses the desire of the couple to marry each other. The groom places a necklace of black and gold beads on the bride as a gift to her.
The saptapadi is an important ritual in North Indian Hindu weddings. During the saptapadi, the bride and groom have their garments tied together. While joined, the couple walks seven steps together to signify their friendship. This couple also made seven circles around a ceremonial fire, each round signifying a specific blessing they request of the gods. Finally, Sindoor, a red-orange powder, is applied to the parting of the bride’s hair. This symbolizes her new status as a married woman. Woohoo. Now the only thing left is the party. So I will see you tomorrow.
Theron Henry of Powerpack Images captured the video for this wedding.