The attire of Wedding Day would be every unmarried single lady's personally cherished dream. Every woman wants a fairytale wedding in THAT Wedding costume. Wedding dresses in South India have always been the famed Kanjeevaram sarees, as sarees are South India's traditional attire. Irrespective of religions, kanjeevarams of bright hues and designs dominated every woman's dream of wedding.
These sarees are delicate, smooth and the feel of one on you can be absolute heaven. The price tags of these sarees, especially the ones taken for wedding were almost a matter of pride for the bride! The notion of wedding attire was limited to sarees only for a very long time, even though the British left the legacy of veil and bouquets in Christian weddings, the love of average Indian woman for a kanjeevaram never diminished. But there was a revolution in the late '80s where the world witnessed the Fairy tale wedding of Lady Di.
Her meringue gown with 25 foot long train and innocent face still remains etched in my memory. The white wedding gowns in West was a phenomena started by Queen Victoria in 1840. Till then, their wedding gowns were gowns made of velevets and silk in rich bright colours. It was after Queen Victoria's famed white lace wedding gown, the 'white- mania' took over. It was wrongly assumed white meant the virginity of the bride. It was just Western Catholic tradition were Church clergy, choirs and servers who used white gowns. It continued when children wore white for christening, first communion and confirmation, all Christian rites. I remember wearing one for my First Communion, full of lace and with a veil, i felt like a little princess. It was then i adored the white gown and my adoration grew into full blown obsession watching Hollywood movies. I watched the Run Away Bride umpteen number of times, every time i watch it, the off shoulder halter gown of Julia Roberts keeps dragging me like a magnet.
So when my D-day came, i voiced my opinion on Wedding gown to Mother whose first reaction was a knowing smile. She took me aside and spent the next fifteen minutes trying to convince me that Kanjeevaram saree was the best, i would look traditional and beautiful. When i ketp on vehemently arguing i wanted a gown istead, she laughed it off, saying " You getting married in a white dress? Forget it." As per local custom, everybody knows, white is the no-no colour that only widows wear. Why would Mother agree to a white dress then? I doggedly nodded my head and submitted to her.
Off we went to buy a lovely Kanjeevaram and with a veil and a bouquet, i looked a funny mix of East and West on my Wedding Day. Recently though, i see many of my friends and relatives exchanging vows in beauiful white gowns with a tiny white bindi- an Indian touch. It is great to see some foray into bringing on a refreshing change to the bridal wear. I would some day love to marry of my little princess in a white designer wedding gown, complete with a veil and a red rose bouquet! Did I hear something? Yes, that must be my Mother turning in her grave!!! Sorry Mother- My obsession with white gowns has now become almost narcissistic and i prefer walking my daughter down the altar in a tulle laced off white gown rather than a red kanjeevaram.
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|Actress Gopika in white gown|