Quite possibly one of my favourite pre-wedding events in a South Asian wedding is the Haldi ceremony. A colourful and lively occasion – typically held the week of and before the wedding.

The Haldi ceremony is a cleansing event during which the couple gathers with close family and friends to have turmeric paste applied to them. Also commonly known as Holud, Maiyyan or Vatna, this auspicious event is pivotal for warding off any evil spirits. The yellow or mustard hue that the turmeric emanates also signifies new beginnings. Perhaps the most fulfilling aspect of the Haldi though is the way it makes your skin feel because of its exfoliating properties.

This is an event you want friends and family to remember for years to come, but how do you make it a memorable one? In this article, I want to share “5 Ways To Make Your Haldi Ceremony Stand Out In All Its Yellow Glory!” from me – Poonam from The Maharani Diaries!

Images: Sidd Rishi Photography / Wedding Planning, Design & Coordination: The Maharani Diaries / Backdrop Styling: Fairytale Events / Props: VIP Decorating  & Fairytale Events 

Bold & Vibrant Décor

Set a bold and vibrant tone for your Haldi by implementing marigolds or yellow carnations. Nothing quite stands out at a party of this nature, like flowers. Many brides and grooms, opt for the synthetic marigold varieties since they aren’t readily available in Australia. Combine the florals with a beautiful backdrop and ensure that there’s a space dedicated for the bride or groom to be the centre of attention.

Pre-wedding rituals at South Asian weddings are hosted at the family home and so that being said, it doesn’t have to be a grand affair at all. I personally love keeping these events quite simple and focus only on a few key areas you want to brighten up.

One of my recent couples who combined their Haldi ceremony opted for an all-yellow theme. I loved how the colours came alive outdoors. The highlight though, was how both bride and groom were dressed in yellow and even their guests met the “yellow theme” brief!

Images: Shevan J Photography from Vandna & Shiva’s At Home Haldi & Mehndi Wedding In Daylesford 

Dress to Impress

On that note, the next way to make your Haldi ceremony stand out is by having a dress theme.

Encourage your guests to dress up in yellow or a specific colour. Of course, the couple is always the main attraction of the Haldi ceremony, however, everyone loves a themed party! It really does add a special touch to your day when all your guests are colour-coordinated.

Glorious Food

Good food is an absolute must at a Haldi ceremony. Ensure that your theme is carried over to the food too. I can already think of a few “yellow” themed foods I would serve at a Haldi. Honestly, though, your guests would be over the moon if you simply had a buffet set up full of Indian delicacies served throughout the course of the event.

More recently, many couples and their families are opting for mini food stations or Indian themed grazing tables. It’s a huge hit and guests go snap happy when food service begins. It really does become a talking point at the party.

Images: Shevan J Photography from Vandna & Shiva’s At Home Haldi & Mehndi Wedding In Daylesford 

Wow with Entertainment

Every pre-wedding event needs some form of entertainment. Whether that’s live musicians or fun games or even dancing, entertainment elevates the mood and makes every guest feel like they are a part of the festivities.

Live musicians are brilliant for creating a beautiful atmosphere. Keep the tone traditional. There are many talented emerging South Asian musicians to choose from and it’s hard to match the ambience that live musicians create. The more budget-friendly option is to have a playlist of your favourite Bollywood or Tollywood (whatever you prefer) songs playing in the background while your guests sit and mingle with each other.

For an outdoor Haldi ceremony, games add the perfect touch, especially if you have a younger crowd. Children and adults alike though love the water games. Water guns and bombs (to remove the Haldi stains of course) to simply throwing buckets of water at each other have become quite the rage!

Images: Bhargav Boppa Photography from Jada & Shivesh’s Intimate Wedding Filled with Hindu Rituals and Customs

Treat your Guests

Finally, your guests deserve just as much love. For many South Asians, pre-wedding events calls for an opportunity to reunite with loved ones and long-lost friends. Treat your guests to unique party favours such as boxes of sweets, festive bangles, candles or even a mini gift hamper. It will become a bit of a conversation starter and perhaps break the ice.

With these tips, your Haldi ceremony is bound to become a memorable event!

Image: Shevan J Photography from Vandna & Shiva’s At Home Haldi & Mehndi Wedding In Daylesford 

About The Maharani Diaries: The Maharani Diaries initially started off as a South Asian wedding blog, created to make the wedding industry more representative of the wider Australian society. Little did I know that 5 years later, I would have my design work published in local and international publications and appear on webinars discussing diversity and inclusion in the wedding industry. From blogging to volunteering, working in hospitality and interning with wedding and event planners to now helping couples on their wedding planning journey, The Maharani Diaries is the culmination of everything I believe in.