We know that a lot of our readers are either brides-to-be or wedding-guests-to-be, and we were thrilled when Darcy Vasudev of Mehndi Paradise offered to write a guest post post for the Luxe Report! Have questions? Leave them in the comments below!
Once you’ve completed the laborious task of choosing the right outfits for your festivities, the next step is choosing your mehndi designs.
While it’s usually best to give your mehndi artist some creative license, you’ll want to choose something appropriate for your occasion that reflects your style. Darcy Vasudev, of Mehndi Paradise, shares some tips on pinpointing your unique style, with examples of her work to inspire you.
The Tasteful Traditionalist – Typical Hindu Indian designs are lacy and intricate and may contain images of peacocks or other animals, images of a bride and groom, dancers, and musicians – a veritable wedding party on the arms! Representations of Ganesh, or Radha and Krishna are also popular. Another component of traditional designs includes solid fingertips, a remnant of olden days, when the fingers were dipped in henna and the “design” was just a large dot in the palm. If you don’t like the look of solid fingertips, you can choose to have the designs extend to the fingertip, or leave the fingertips open for a more modern look. Etiquette tip: Religious symbols should be confined to the hands and arms, avoiding the left palm. Avoid using any religious symbols on the feet.
The Fusion Femme – Sometimes the bride and groom come from different cultural or religious backgrounds. If you don’t want to include any defining religious symbols in your mehndi, you can still opt for intricate designs such as paisleys, or designs that emulate the look of jewelry. “Arabic” style designs are known for beautiful floral and swirling motifs, which can suit any bride. Because henna is also a part of Middle Eastern, North African, Persian Gulf, and Jewish traditions, the custom of mehndi can be a beautiful way to unite two families that may not realize they share this tradition in common! Etiquette tip: Instead of using religious motifs, choose decorative or jewelry-inspired patterns or florals. Be flirty and hide the groom’s name or initials in the design, for him to find on the wedding night!
The DIY Diva – With so many couples planning their own weddings, many brides don’t have time for an extended mehndi session. Remember that most wedding outfits barely show the feet at all, and bangles can cover a large portion of the forearm, so skipping heavy designs on the arms and legs can save both time and money. A good compromise is to put the densest patterns on the palms, and lighter coverage on the tops of the hands, and a simple slipper or floral design on the feet. Pro tip: Plan to have your mehndi done at least 48 hours prior to your wedding. That way, any last minute do-it-yourself tasks can be completed without messing up your mehndi.
The Sunshine Girl – More and more couples are choosing international destinations for their big day. With the relaxed atmosphere and warm climates in places like Mexico and the Caribbean, almost anything goes. Elaborate designs for the feet can be especially beautiful for a barefoot beach wedding, and exotic tropical floral motifs, or a sassy “tattoo” on the body are also popular. For destination weddings you’ll need to have your mehndi applied the day before you fly to your location, or better yet, bring a destination specialist, such as Mehndi Paradise, to ensure that your design doesn’t start to fade before your wedding. Pro tip: Although it may be difficult to resist a swim in the ocean or pool, in order to get a rich color you’ll need to avoid water for about 24 hours after your mehndi has been applied. And because henna is a natural sunscreen, if you spend time tanning without sunblock, you can end up with a reverse henna design after the pattern has faded!
Flatter your Physique – Besides choosing motifs to best complement your wedding style, you can also utilize mehndi to accentuate the shape of your hands and feet. Flowing diagonal patterns can elongate a wide hand or foot, while bracelet-like bands of pattern around the wrist or ankle can highlight a slender frame. Short fingers look great with patterns extending the length of the finger. For those with very long digits, solid fingertips can provide a nice contrast to an otherwise intricate design.
Whatever designs you choose, the mehndi application is your time to relax and be pampered before your big day. And with good care, your design can last well into your honeymoon, so you’ll want to choose your henna artist, and designs, with care.
Remember, if you’re planning a destination wedding, email firstname.lastname@example.org for information on our free Wedding Concierge Service. Luxemi will create a custom-tailored package for you and your guests, and coordinate delivery for you, to keep your wedding weekend stress free!