Weddings

A Colorful Palette and a Rustic Setting—This Indian-American Wedding Is a Must-See

Sudha and Dan Gilbert held a vibrant celebration in Leesburg, Va.
All photographs by Luck & Love Photography

Sudha and Dan Gilbert’s Indian-American wedding perfectly captured both of their worlds with a delicious fusion menu and a bright, bold aesthetic. “We were definitely making our own traditions with this wedding,” says Sudha, “especially since we were fusing two cultures together.” The couple married at the Riverside on the Potomac and blended their backgrounds by opting for lots of colorful decor, such as a one-of-a-kind hanging floral arch, and menu that featured a variety of Indian and American dishes.

This Indian-American wedding is filled with fresh and colorful details. 

indian-american-wedding

Formal invitations featured navy and gold detailing on white stationary.

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

Bright flowerssuch as peonies, garden roses, carnations, and thistlewere used in the couple’s floral arrangements. “We used a little of everything that was seasonal,” Sudha says. 

indian-american-wedding

Sudha described her bouquet as “basically an explosion of springtime flowers,” and embraced her heritage by wearing a colorful sari.

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding

She completed the look with her hair pulled back in an elegant updo accessorized with a Maang Tikkaa traditional Indian headpiece.

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding

In lieu of bridesmaid bouquets, the bride had her ‘maids wear custom floral cuffs instead.

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

She first thought about having her bridesmaids carry corsages, but then her florist, Haley Tobias of Cedar and Lime Co., came up with the clever idea for the cuffs. 

indian-american-wedding

Dan looked dapper in a navy three-piece suit accessorized with a pink-peony boutonniere.

indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding

The ceremony altar featured hanging carnations, and was one of Sudha’s favorite wedding details. “It looked like it was actually raining carnations,” she says.

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

Sudha and Dan’s wedding included several Hindu traditions, including a fire (candles) in the center of the arch, and the adorning of one another with floral garlands.

indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding

After the ceremony, Sudha changed into a boho-inspired gown that featured a relaxed silhouette, all-over lace, and a high-neckline.

indian-american-wedding

As for their story: The couple met in Boston while the bride was finishing up college. “I have to admit I almost missed our first date,” Sudha says. She wasn’t feeling well (and may have had a case of the butterflies), but one of her friends convinced her not to cancel. (“I’m so glad she did!”) Sudha agreed to grab a coffee with Dan and they instantly clicked. “By the end of the date, we both looked at the time and realized with surprise that more than three hours had passed,” says Sudha. “We were so wrapped up in conversation that time had just flown by.”

indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

The reception featured long wooden rectangular tables and twinkling string lighting to evoke a rustic vibe.

indian-american-wedding

Lanterns and greenery, which also helped add to the whimsical aesthetic, hung above the couple’s sweetheart table.

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

Escort cards guided guests to their seats during the reception, and table numbers were decorated with floral artwork to complement the couple’s colorful Indian-American wedding theme.

indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding

indian-american-wedding

For dinner the couple opted for two different buffet stations. “We had amazing caterers that served a variety of fantastic contemporary American cuisine, and even allowed us to bring in Indian dishes from a favorite restaurant of ours,” Sudha says. The American buffet included sirloin steaks and cedar-wrapped salmon, with sides of rosemary fingerling potatoes and broccolini; the Indian buffet offered guests kurma, pulao, biryani, masala, and naan.  “Our priority was to make [our wedding] special for each other and fun for our all of our guests,” says Sudha. 

indian-american-wedding
indian-american-wedding

After dinner, a four-tiered cake adorned with cascading florals and hand-piping details was cut and served. “We had layers of white pound cake, chocolate pound cake, and angel-food cake,” Sudha says. “and alternated with raspberry filling, buttercream filling, lemon filling, and cream cheese filling.”

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The Details:

 

Photography: Luck & Love Photography Venue: Riverside on the Potomac | Event Planning & Design: L&L Events | Florist: Cedar & Lime | Invitations: The Dandelion Patch | Caterer: Purple Onion Catering & Godavari | Dessert: Purple Onion Catering | Rentals: Barnes Farmhouse Tables | Hair & Makeup Artist: FLOW Beauty Bar | Bride’s Attire: Nazranaa (Sari); BHLDN (reception)  | Groom’s Attire: SuitSupply| Bridesmaids’ Attire: Nazranaa |  Groomsmen’s Attire: The Black Tux | Jewelry: Pave Jewelers  | Music/Entertainment: Belt It Out Productions

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jacqueline-tynes
Assistant Editor, Washingtonian Weddings