Wedding designer Ambika Gupta has shared details from the wedding of filmstar Kajal Aggarwal, giving an idea of all that went into making the day special amidst the pandemic.
Kajal married Gautam Kitchlu on October 30 and Ambika was chosen by Kajal’s family to create the wedding experience. The entire wedding was designed around the theme ‘Kashmir to Kanyakumari’ by Ambika. The post-lockdown scenario was naturally a challenge for the wedding designer.
“Kajal and her family were extremely particular about safety and we rigorously followed all protocols without compromising on the aesthetics and the keen eye for detail, they wanted. We observed Covid-19 precautions as specified by the Maharashtra government and the 60-70 guests and members of the crew who were present at the wedding had to go through health clearances beforehand,” Ambika said.
How Kajal discovered the Chennai-based Ambika is also an interesting story.
“It was completely serendipitous. Kajal’s sister Nisha took a brief look at my portfolio, and after a few calls and meetings we were on,” Ambika reecalled.
“Not a flashy person herself, Kajal wanted her wedding to be understated but elegant. Keeping that in mind and noticing their roots in the respective cultural legacies that she and her husband share, I came up with the complete idea. During the question-answer round Gautam told me that he is from Kashmir and hence I came up with the ‘Kashmir to Kanyakumari’ theme and we brought it all to life in just over 35 days,” she added.
Drawing from diverse cultural references, Ambika ideated and designed the ambience of ‘Brijwasi Krishna bagh’, a Radha and Krishna-themed puja at Kajal’s home.
For the Haldi and Mehendi, a French bistro at Churchgate was transformed into a Kitsch Mandi as a tribute to the artisans of India who have been hard-hit by the onset of Covid-19.
“Kajal wore a specially handcrafted weave by Madhurya creations, which is an initiative to support weavers and revive traditional crafts. She has a soft spot for the unsung weavers of India and her wedding was the perfect opportunity to give back to them in some way,” said Ambika.
Kajal has always urged her fans and followers to support small businesses, and she urged Ambika’s team to convert the French ambience into an authentic artisanal experience. They curated and designed a backdrop made of Pettis, or traditional contraptions used by coconut tree climbers.
Other aspects that drew attention were the Kutch workmanship in furnishings, traditional dry palm weaves all round, and also a Chettinad console, and brass pots with banana leaves.
The wedding venue was the Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai, where Kashmiri design details were incorporated as a nod to Gautam’s heritage, since the groom is a Kashmiri. The theme was ‘Shikara: Voyage of Love’, and it drew from the beauty of Kashmir, by mirroring mountain ranges and the Dal Lake.
“The mandap was majestic and reminiscent of a pyramid. This was an ode to hilly terrains of Kashmir and also representative of the merging of the self and the soul. It was held together by gold frames and translucent baby pink screens. The mandap also bore intricate details of a Shikara, with panelling reminiscent of Kashmir’s houseboats with their wooden jaalis. Adding to the warmth were powder blue pashmina embroidery pieces captured in diamond set frames. Each guest was given a silver bell with a personalised note,” Ambika said.
Also Read-Experience Reflects On Craft Of Acting