My Mother’s Dream
It’s rare to get a styling opportunity from the hippest place in the US – Los Angeles. Though Dr Julia Ray, a gynaecologist in residency, and I struck an instant connection because of our mutual love for everything fashion, it was also the Bengali roots. We first met in Mumbai where we shopped for exactly one day. Julia described her wedding look as ‘purist’, ‘heritage’ and ‘BENGALI.’ “My job is tough. I am always in the labour room, delivering babies. I won’t have the time to discuss my wedding shopping,” she told me over chats, adding, “I will have to rely on you completely.”
Julia is a woman whose job pivots on the joys of motherhood, but she tragically lost her own mom just a few years before her marriage. “My mother is the biggest style and cultural icon for me,” an emotional Julia said. “Even though we lived in Houston all our lives, my mom wore the most beautiful Banarasi and Dhakai saris. Only fine jewellery, gold, diamonds and pure gem stones. I have learnt everything about our roots and, of Calcutta, nostalgia and our heritage, from my mother. On my wedding, I wanted to retain and relive everything that my mother taught me about Indian culture.” And so, on the day of the wedding, all this history came rushing to Julia and Matt and it was reflected the most in clothing and the heritage fort in Goa – the wedding venue. Julia wore a rare Sabyasachi Banarasi sari, the most quintessential symbol of being a Bengali bride. With her alta-smeared hands, mukut and the spiritual colour red, we recreated the dream look her mother would have approved.
PERSONAL SHOPPER & STYLIST :
Shreya Sen, Mumbai
GROOM’S WARDROBE :
“Photographing Bengali weddings is a sensory experience. Rich in tradition, they have a vast list of rituals and are often filled with a sense of beautiful chaos. However, there are rare times when you come across a beautiful couple who makes these rituals even more meaningful. She lowered her beetle leaves and he teared up. It could have been because she looked so beautiful or that after so many years of being together, they were finally doing this”
Shreya Sen, photographer
“It’s hard being an interracial couple. People always expected me to marry an Indian and they think because I married someone who isn’t that I am going to giving up my culture. We both love each other and in fact, lucky to have two cultures instead of just one.”
Dr Julia Ray, Gynaecologist, Los Angeles
“I am Julia Ray, a doctor in California. I googled Bridelan’s services a year before my wedding. With my busy work schedule, my wedding was to take place in India and I met Nisha only for one day for my outfits in Mumbai and another day to select my wedding venue in Goa. A destination wedding is tough enough, especially when you are not able to be present in person to do the ground work. However, I like to be in charge of my decisions and not being in India to organize everything was my worst nightmare. Nisha made shopping from a far seem easy. She took the guess work out and gave me practical solutions with easy communications.
I even sent my now husband Matt to shop with her in India (not his forte) and she made him feel completely at ease. Her creativity and attention to detail were the highlights of the process. I love the way she styles, I relate to her way of putting things together and feel she gets me. I could not have done this without her. It was such a relief to know I had Nisha at the corner of my eyes at the most important day of my life.”
Elegant wedding styling is Bridelan’s strong suit. Servicing South Asian brides-to-be from United Sates and Canada for personal shopper and styling services.