The 'mandvo' & 'pithi', also known as the haldi ceremony, are events which come just before the wedding. The mandvo is a religious ceremony which is done from both sides separately, as the almost 'prep' for the wedding ceremony itself. Traditionally my side of the family are able to do this at home with very small numbers & family - for girls getting married, the mandvo can be done on the morning of the wedding. My husband's side generally does this as quite a big affair, almost at the scale of a big wedding. We wanted to do something different (& not to waste too much holiday time for our family & friends).
For putting our little twist on this, we decided to do a joint mandvo, side-by-side & our pithi ceremonies straight after. That way we got to see each other get completely covered in turmeric by each others' loved ones (it's so worth it!).
We used their fairly new area 'Chef's Garden' for the mandvo & pithi. The team there had set up a lovely breakfast, chai, fruits & lots of hot & cold drinks. Our priest, Dharmasetu Dasa, performed the joint ceremony & tried to make it as informative & short as possible so that we were able to get to the good stuff. During this morning we were blessed with rain, which is a sign of good luck (which made me so happy inside). It was during this ceremony my Faiba (Dad's sister) mentioned to me that she feels as though she's seen our priest before. She had this urge to speak to him & I'm so glad she did because it was after that conversation we found out that his brother was the priest for my brothers' wedding! It felt like such a sweet blessing from our stars above.
For this event, I first wore a beautiful House of Masaba lengha & changed into a mustard coloured jumpsuit for the pithi ceremony (as I didn't want to ruin my beautiful outfit!). My makeup was my usual, but on the lighter side, with a gorgeous thick plait by Nicky, so my hair was tied back ready for the pithi straight after. I wore beautiful floral jewellery again from the talented Maari Floral. This was the morning after the fiesta & this is when I truly saw the mehndi stain developed & it was so beautiful!
The mandvo ceremony itself went very smoothly & beautifully. I definitely felt the presence of my Papa here, blessing us both from above. It was beautiful. It was so nice to be able to do this ceremony side-by-side with my Husband. It wasn't something we felt like we wanted to do but I'm glad our mums said to go for it, as its spiritually important before the wedding ceremony.
I have heard so many nightmare stories about brides & grooms breaking in full-blown acne out right before the wedding because of the type of 'pithi' used days before the big day. So to be on the safe side we opted to use Kiehl's Turmeric & Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Masque. I've had so many emails, messages & comments from so many people saying they also opted to do the same thing for their pithi ceremony & it makes me so happy that you also loved it as much as we did.
My husband & I are huge fans of the mask & have used it so many times beforehand & we knew our skin loves it so it was a no brainer. I would say that we used around 4/5 tubs in total (for some reason I thought it would be much more!).
It was so funny to see each other's pithi ceremonies. Unfortunately, we didn't do it side by side at the same time, as we were told it's a bad omen. But, it was nice to be there watching the entire thing & laughing so much 🙂
Vex was really good & didn't get many of his family or friends back but I, on the other hand, got every single person back in big & small ways (even my little nephews got a little on their cheeks, haha!). I think it was this ceremony that really made me feel like we were getting married, as the other events felt very much like parties... This made it so beautifully real.