How it all began? I got engaged, on 24th July 2017. It wasn’t a big party, and we had the shortest amount of time to get things done. It was a day my marriage got fixed and a new chapter of my life began.
In our Bangladeshi tradition an engagement is actually called a “Cinipaan/Sinifan.” There are so many ways to pronounce it, but it’s whatever rocks your boat tbh. After the bride and groom meet for the first time and give their consent and wish to go ahead with the proposal, the grooms side of the family come with gifts for the bride as a token of acceptance and a way of starting the new relationship.
I was given one hamper with my outfit to wear, which was a saree from Seema Sarees, my necklace, earrings and head piece was from Sokora Jewels, my bangles and hand chains were from Veer in Green Street, & the shoes were from New Look. I had my mehndi applied the night before, on both hands, by my good friend Alsa, she also came the next day and did my hair and makeup for me. So I could attempt to look like a bride 😉
Due to it being summer, we put up our marquee in the garden, so the guests and everyone could sit together in the garden, rather than being cramped and crowded in the house. We kept the setting simple, and had a little dessert/sweets table which was set up by the help of my sisters and brothers. We had two of our dining tables joined together, which then allowed everyone to be fed and seated together.
The elders of both side of the family come together and discuss the dates of when they would like the wedding to be, if its suitable or not for both sides of the family. They then discuss the giving of gold to the bride, which is some ancient south asian tradition, not just for Bengali’s. Both sides come to an agreement of what the groom is capable of giving to his bride and the next stage is discussing the islamic marriage and the gift a man gives to his bride.
The islamic term for that is Mahr. A mahr is a compulsory payment of either money or possessions that must be given to the bride by the groom as a gift, that then legally becomes her property.
The grooms family bring mitai (sweets) and other little gifts for me, and the brides family also present the groom with gifts and hampers. I was given a temporary ring by my husband to be, and my mother in law presented me with a gold bracelet. My dad also gifted the groom with a watch, and we exchanged hampers, for us to open later on.The cupcake board was made by me, I just got a plain cake board, added some readymade cupcakes and got some alphabet stickers from Hobbycraft. The paan and gwah (beetle nut) taal was made by my mum and sasi-amma. (Paternal uncles wife). Giving a paan and gwah taal is a bengali tradition for sinipaans.
These were just a few gifts that I gave to my husband to be, it consisted of toiletries, socks, a Quran Cube, Arsenal Shirt, Aftershave and a Tasbih (prayer bead) that I had made with his name on it, the hamper also included few little bits and pieces too.
I got spoilt, with makeup from Anastasia Beverly Hills & Certifeye, toiletries from The Body Shop, sweets, a frame with a lego batman and wonder women with our names on which was sentimental cause he found out I’m obsessed with DC Comics. A hairbrush from New Look and many other little bits and bobs that make up a nice gift basket. 🙂
Under such short notice it was extremely hard pulling it all off and getting everything together. It was manic, it was stressful but by the grace of Allah everything went smoothly and the journey of my new life began, and I took the next steps and became Bridezilla!
I hope you all enjoyed reading my new journey as a bride. I have so much more content, which all includes the stressful, nerve racking and exciting times I had planning my wedding. I hope I can share some tricks and tips as a Bengali bride to help the sisters out there, and you can join me through my words and see what it was like as Life of a Bride.
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