It all started with a telephone conversation about the sort of ceremony I could write and conduct. Kaajal and Nilesh were not looking to have a full hindu ceremony, however their religion is very important to them and they wanted to include key parts of the hindu ceremony if possible into the ceremony that I would conduct for them at the Chutney Ivy, mitchelin star restaurant in Leicester.
We had a meeting at their house, where I was made to feel so welcome and got an insight into how their religion played a key part of their daily life. After several meetings and conversations, the ceremony was complete and I had the pleasure of not only conducting their ceremony but being a guest at their spectacular wedding after the ceremony.
I asked the bride, Kaajal, a few questions about planning her day :
Why did you choose your particular venue ?
Nilesh and I had previously gone to Chutney Ivy shortly before we got engaged and had a really lovely meal there. When we were deciding where to hold the event, we decided to go to the restaurant as we felt that choosing an empty venue with the added extras of food, tables, décor and entertainment would be too much to manage. We had various meetings with the owner Shaf and explained how we wanted the day to go and thankfully everything went to plan.
How did you choose your photographer ?
When it came to choosing a photographer we had been looking around for some time. I spoke to my brother Bhav, and explained that we were having trouble finding a photographer that we liked and was reasonable when he mentioned that Liz ( Elizabeth and Alice Holt photography ) was a good friend of his and her photos were really stunning. When Nilesh and I had a look at her portfolio, we decided to book her as we loved her pictures.
Why did you choose My Perfect Ceremony ?
As we were not having a traditional Indian ceremony but wanted some parts of it that meant something to us, so we looked at booking Jo from My Perfect Ceremony. We wanted the ceremony to be bespoke to us and what our beliefs are. Nilesh was a bit sceptical at first, thinking that we did not really need someone to conduct the ceremony for us, however after we met Jo at our initial meeting, he understood why I suggested it. Once our meeting was over, we had a much more clear idea of how the day would work and how the ceremony would come together.
What was your favourite part of the ceremony ?
The favourite part of the ceremony was definitely the readings by our daughter Sania and nephews. We both really loved the exchanging of the vows and Jo's speech about marriage and what it means.
Please describe your day
The day overall was absolutely fantastic. It was an early start and a very late finish. Once the hair and make up was completed, my father and I made our way to the Town Hall in our tuk tuk. The ceremony itself seemed to go very quickly at the Town Hall. I think we were both more looking forward to the ceremony at the restaurant. Once we were finished at the town hall, Nilesh and I went to get some pictures taken in the tuk tuk near the Curve. I underestimated how cold it actually was on that day. We even managed to get a quick cup of tea before the ceremony was due to start. It was lovely to make our entrance, seeing all our family and friends there. It was a beautiful ceremony, the readings, the lovely words by Jo and the exchanging of vows and rings. We had the most amazing time being able to share our first meal as husband and wife with those closest to us.
What was your experience of My Perfect ceremony ?
Jo is extremely professional and approachable. When I first described the elements of the ceremony that we wanted, she had conducted her own research and we went through it together in our initial meeting. It was fun working with Jo. Nothing seemed to be too much of a problem, even when we were stuck on writing our vows, Jo was really helpful in giving ideas about how we could write them and even offered to go over them once we had an idea of what we wanted to say. Even during the ceremony itself, Jo was very calming, she explained what was going to happen to us both and definitely helped calm our nerves.
What were your favourite parts of the day ?
We had so many parts of the day that stick out in our mind. Seeing each other for the first time on the day of our wedding at the Town Hall, the ceremony, vows, the speeches, going around Leicester City Centre in a tuktuk. Also just getting a chance to speak to our friends and family that were there on the day was great, The evening party, our first dance which was so awkward that it became funny, the tuktuk photobooth. The whole day was just amazing.