“Inflation ho ya recession, humari country mein shaadiyan hoti rehti hai.” (Whether there's inflation or recession, weddings keep happening in our country) This dialogue from the Bollywood film Band Baaja Baaraat perfectly encapsulates the country's insatiable appetite for elaborate weddings.
For those who realise the potential in it — the country's most frequent, elaborate event — wedding planning is truly an ingenious career idea.
However, ask the professionals and they'll be quick to tell you that wedding planning is a lot more than just song and dance.
On a typical wedding day, the bride is a vision, the food is a lavish spread and the flowers are more than just articles for decoration. Children in heavily embroidered clothes run across the stage while their parents and guardians sit around the table discussing how this wedding is better than the last, or how it unfortunately isn't.
In the midst of these colourful proceedings, you may notice someone busily ensuring that the drinks are being re-filled, the bride's ‘dupatta' doesn't trail and the photographer gets all the needed shots. This, busy body is the wedding planner. “There is an unfathomable amount of emotion involved in a wedding.
So, planning it is definitely a roller-coaster ride. Even if everything is arranged perfectly, there are toothpicks missing for the starters, people tend to talk only about the latter,” says Ashwin U.G. of Avenues Hospitality. All the chaos and hardships aside, wedding planners in the city keep reminding themselves why they took up the job in the first place. Arun Fernandes, a freelance wedding planner, joined the business four years ago, inspired by a friend who does the same. He now loves his job and enjoys the whole process.
Shreya Dutta, wedding planner at Krafted Knots, says, “I try to translate the umpteen ideas that people have while planning a wedding and find a consensus. “In order to make each couple's special day” unmatched, she starts planning months ahead.
However, for years, weddings have been planned efficiently without any planners. So, is hiring one a wise choice? Pramod and Premila Mehta, who have been married for over 45 years, seem to think so. “If there is someone who can be hired to deal with the multi-tasking that is required to organise a wedding, there is no harm in it,” says Ms. Mehta.
This is just what wedding planners strive for. “It is through the word of mouth that we get our next job,” says Mr. Ashwin. At the end of the wedding, if the guests can be heard raving about the event, they know they've got their next job.