Importance of Indian Bridal Mehndi.
January 11, 2019
“What is Indian Bridal Mehndi & it’s importance?”
This is a question I get asked time and again. For a bride to get ready for her wedding, she has to go through 16 beautification, cleansing, and religious rituals called “Solah Shringar“. Indian Bridal Mehndi is one of the sixteen rituals which is used to beautify the bride.
Often when I do bridal mehndi, I get asked “Does your mehndi color come out dark? I really want my mother-in-law to love me”. While people know about the correlation of mehndi color to mother-in-law’s love, many people don’t know where this legend originated.
This legend dates back to the olden times when women were taught to be subservient and not voice their opinions. When a newlywed woman got married, her henna color was an indicator of how the mother-in-law was treating her. She could either be welcomed as a newlywed and allowed time to adjust to her new homework or put to work right away by her mother-in-law.
After a few days when the girl returned to her parents’ house for customary post wedding rituals, the bride’s mother knew by looking at her daughter’s henna if her daughter was being treated well at her new home. If the henna was still on, it meant that her mother-in-law was loving and giving her the respect of a newlywed bride; if her henna had faded, then her mother-in-law had put her to work right away.
Another question brides often ask me is “Why is the groom’s name written in the bride’s henna?”
Back in the days when marriages were arranged, the bride and the groom did not have an opportunity to see each other before the wedding. Usually, the wedding night was the first time that the bride and groom actually met each other. The groom’s name used to be written in the bride’s henna as an ice-breaker to initiate conversation when the groom would ask to find his name in her hand.
Nowadays, things are different as the bride and groom tend to know each other very well, but I like to continue this tradition and scatter the groom’s name in the bride’s henna. I tell the bride if he is unable to find his name in the henna, she is supposed to get a present from him, an idea which excites every bride.
In some cultures, the bride’s mehndi is sent by the groom’s family, or they have a ceremony where they will apply some mehndi to the bride-to-be and dress her up with clothes and jewelry. There is a saying in Hindi, “Humare rang mein rang Jaana” means Becoming the part of our Family. Applying their mehndi to the bride is a way of signifying that they are welcoming the bride-to-be into their family and accepting her as their own.
Written by: Jasmine Dedhia.
Tags: Bridal Mehndi, Indian Bridal Mehndi, Bridal Mehndi Importance.