How to shop for your wedding in India7 Comments Advice, invitations, overlays, Shopping in India, stationary, Trousseau, wedding planning
One of the big decisions that brides struggle with is whether they should go to India to shop for the wedding or not. Brides like to go to India because they get much more variety and also get it for a better price. However, the plane tickets can get expensive, especially if going with other friends or members of family, and it can be hard to take off from work. So how do you make the trip worth your while and rationalize your decision to go for shopping in India? I think a trip to India, if planned well, can not only save you a lot of money, but can also help you find the exact things you are looking for. Here are a few tips on how you can take full advantage of your shopping trip to India:
1. Research and Prepare: Research and preparing for your trip can’t be stressed enough. It is very important to prepare an itinerary for your trip before you go. Get as much information as you can before you leave. If you have relatives, call them to make trip arrangements, like accommodations, transportation, and may be even ask them if they can accompany you on your shopping trips. If you don’t have relatives, then you have to be on top of all the arrangements for your trip. Research shopping areas in the city you are planning on going to, talk to other brides, read about latest Indian styles, and bring color swatches and samples on your trip. You want to make sure that you don’t fall sick on the trip, so make sure you take all your shots before you go, and also drink bottled water. Carry an emergency medicine kit and also dress modestly when going to shop.
2. Pick up your Wedding Invitations: It might be a good idea to bring back your wedding invitations from India yourself, so that you can save on the shipping/courier costs.
3. Wedding Trousseau: Get outfits for yourself and your fiance to wear at all of the wedding functions. If your fiance is not coming with you, then make sure that you take all of his measurements required to order his sherwani/suit. You might want to pick up a couple extra sarees and salwar kameez while you are in India as a part of your trousseau. You should also take care of all your tailoring such as blouse stitching, saree falls etc. while you are in India, so that you don’t have to worry about in when you get back. You might consider buying saree pins as well.
4. Jewelry: Read about the latest jewelry styles in Indian Fashion Magazines and Websites. Although, gold is traditionally bought during weddings, but you might also want to consider Polki, Diamond, Jadau or even Semi Precious Costume Jewelry. Necklace and earrings are a must! You can also add special touches to your look by getting a maatha patti/teeka, amulets (baaju bandh) and anklets (payal).
5. Accessories – Bindis, Bangles, Shoes and Purses: You can gorgeous matching accessories in India for reasonable prices. You can’t get better bindis and bangles anywhere else, but India. There is a huge selection to choose from and you can mix and match very easily. Embellished shoes and clutch bags are also available in great varieties and good prices.
6. Bridal Party’s Outfits: You should definitely purchase bridemsaids’ sarees and groomsmens’ sherwanis in India. Not only will this save you a lot of money, but also hassle. This is the first thing you should shop for when going to India, because finding identical outfits can be a pain and you might have to get them custom made. Hence, it is also important to carry your bridal party’s measurements. For women, also get the blouses stitched in India.You could also get your immediate family’s outfits from India as well.
7. Mandap drapes: If your wedding colors are unique, you might consider getting your mandap drapery stiched in India. You can beautiful embellishments and trimmings on your mandap, which will look exclusive. All you would need to do is talk to your decorator and get the measurements.
8. Money Envelopes, Gifts and Welcome Bags: You can purchase beautiful stationary while in India for your wedding. You have a huge choice when it comes to Money Envelopes and Bags – You can get them in organza, gorgeous hand made paper, and they come embellished with stones and trimmings. You might consider purchasing gifts for members of family, bridesmaids and groomsmen. Danglers/Earrings for women and ties/cufflinks for men make great gifts and take up less luggage room as well.
9. Overlays/ Table cloths: You might consider getting table cloths or overlays to accent your decor. You can get premium table cloths (organza, brocade etc.) stitched in India for less than the rental price of simple white table linen in the US. Overlays are even cheaper! So if you know your wedding colors, carry some swatches and look up table meaurements in order to get your overlays and table cloths custom tailored in India.
10. Favors: Another way to cut on costs by shopping in India could be purchasing favors. You can get beautiful favors ranging from $1 – $5 per piece. If you buy in bulk quantity, you can negotiate the price with the vendor. Jewelry and Trinket boxes, Incense stick holders, Diffusers etc. all make great favors!
If you are thinking of throwing an engagement party in India, it might be a good idea to combine your shopping trip with that. While you are in India, you might also want to take advantage of the reasonable beauty and spa treatments. Please share your India shopping experiences with us here!