Sonia and Sunny
Punjabi Hindu and Punjabi Sikh
Wedding: The Turnip Rose
Reception: Hilton Costa Mesa
Photography: Greycard Photography
Videography: Robles Video Productions
Did you have a sangeet? mehndi?
Yes, and they were combined and held at my Aunt’s home.
What made you select The Turnip Rose and Hilton Costa Mesa for your events? We loved the atmosphere at the Turnip Rose – it’s a romantic setting. Our event there was simple, yet elegant. We picked the Hilton because it was 1 mile from the Turnip Rose also because it fit our guest count.
What were the factors that influenced having the wedding and reception at different venues? We wanted our events at different venues and different days, for convenience. We also wanted both days to be completely different when it came to the setting and ambiance. I’ve noticed at past events we’ve attended and been a part of, that having everything all on one day, is extremely stressful and you’re bound to forget something.
What were your priorities for your wedding? reception? We wanted our events to be aesthetically pleasing and represent us. I love a romantic and colorful setting and Sunny loves to put on a show when it comes to entertainment, which is why we added our own flare to both events. The top 3 things every guest will always remember are the food, the entertainment, and fun favors (not many people remember the favors… unless they’re Krispy Kreme donuts!)
Since the wedding and reception were on separate days, walk us through your wedding day.
The baraat began at 4:15pm leading right into the milni. Some of Sunny’s friends play the dhol so it was fun having them!
The ceremony began at 5:30pm and concluded at 6:30pm. Pictures were taken at the mandap and then 6:30-7:30pm was cocktail hour. 7:30pm the dinner began and concluded at 9pm. We had a grand sparklers exit at 9pm.
And the reception day?
On the reception day, cocktail hour was from 6pm-7pm. We had our grand entrance at 7:15pm and went straight into the first dance, father-daughter dance, and speeches. Then we hyped it up with entertainment. Our families performed skits and dances, we had our best friends play the dhol and then ended it with the Regiment Bhangra team to get the dance floor started. And it concluded at 1am.
Where did you shop for clothes?
Dream’s Collections in Artesia, CA as well as in India. I had a pleasant experience with Sakshi Aunty. I told her what I wanted and she basically pulled out my wedding dress straight from the pile. It was love at first site!
How many months did you give yourself to plan your wedding?
What is your cultural background? Sunny’s? Did you go through an education process to learn each other’s traditions?
I’m Hindu and Sunny is Sikh. No education process was necessary for the wedding because I was exposed to both religions growing up, as was he. It’s more, after the wedding where we are learning each other’s traditions, day-by-day.
What was going through your mind when you were walking down the aisle?
I was nervous of course, but as soon as my eyes locked on to Sunny’s, I was beyond elated and ready to be his wife!
What was the best and your least favorite parts of planning?
The best part was cake and food tastings. My least favorite part was confirming major venues while in tax season. My family and I have a family tax business, S. Sharma Tax Inc. and I had to book the venues and solidify things in the middle of a very busy season. Otherwise, my husband and I enjoyed planning.
Did you have a lot of influencers in your decision making for the wedding events?
We were very grateful to have parents and family that let us do what we wanted. But, we did heed to advice from family and friends that got married in the past, hence, why we did the events on two separate days.
Did you have any dance performances at any events?
Our first performance was my family (cousins and brothers) that played a skit on how my husband and I met. It was purely for laughter. They also performed a few dances. The second performance was my husband’s best friends from Dholnation. They played a wonderful set on their dhol’s. The 3rd performance was actually a surprise for me as my husband went up and danced with his old bhangra team. The last performance was Regiment Bhangra team that performed and opened up the dance floor. My husband organized the entire entertainment segment for the reception night.
What was Sunny’s role in wedding planning?
Thankfully, we both played the roles that fit us best. I handled the fine details and he mastered the entertainment. We held a few meetings per week to touch base on what needed to be done. The key was to stay organized and pay attention to the workbook that our wedding planner provided. It helped us make the right decisions when it came to anything.
Any advice in general?
I highly recommend assigning tasks to both families. Make a list with what needs to be done, and send out a mass email. This will help take a lot of stress off of the bride and groom so that they can focus on enjoying the events leading up to the big day. Please, please enjoy every moment as it flies by before you know it! I am still reminiscing about it and missing everyone and everything dearly.
How did you decide on decor?
Decor was quite simple as I love color. My wedding planner was also our decorator. She really knew how to make our vision come to life! Once I decided on my wedding dress and reception dress, it was quite easy to solidify the decor.
Our Wedding Professionals Team
Cake Sweet n’ Saucy – Melody Brandon. I am beyond thankful I went with Melody. She is attentive to detail and really made our cake come to life. It matched our theme seamlessly.
Did you have different caterers on the wedding day and reception?
On the wedding day we catered from the Turnip Rose venue. The food was spectacular and everyone loved that we gave them a break from Indian food since we had it for 4 events prior to the wedding. They do a tasting where you and 4 guests come in to taste the food, the appetizers, desserts, and drinks.
For the reception, we catered from Manohar’s Delhi Palace. They’re one of the best Indian food vendors you can ever go with. We had a tasting at his restaurant a few weeks before the reception. He’ll customize each dish to your liking. He really pays great attention to detail and really delivers.
How did you come up with the menu(s)?
We basically had catering menus provided to us from each vendor and we played with what worked for us. I highly recommend doing a proper tasting and taking some family with you to get a second opinion.
Clothes: Dream’s Collections; I told Sakshi Aunty what I wanted and she selected my lehenga from her inventory. It was love at first site!
Coordinator/Planner/Decorator – Smita Mohindra from Ethnic Essence.
She is by far the most creative, organized and kind person you’ll meet. She really delivers!!! We were speechless when we saw both our venues come to life. I am thankful I went with her.
Desserts – Sweet n’ Saucy by Melody Brandon. She helped us a create a dessert table when we had our cake tasting. We decided to not offer cake after the cake cutting as people tend to waste it usually so instead we did a dessert table with various desserts to choose from. We had Melody help us pick the most popular and she color coordinated it to match our theme.
Nick Datwani from Legacy Events. He was not only our DJ and lighting guy but is also a friend. His music selection was epic and he really catered to our music taste. The lighting was remarkable, especially when he had the lighting going with our Dhol performance. It was one amazing show! Our dhol players were Dholnation. This group consists of 3 siblings that are extremely talented in what they do. They are our best friends as well and we were lucky to have them play at our events.
Hair and makeup: Dolled up by Lulu. She is the sweetest, most talented, kindest, and helpful person you’ll meet! She even fed me to make sure I didn’t pass out. I like the drama in makeup and wanted a talented artist to accentuate my best features.
What look did you want for your wedding? reception? On the wedding day I wanted my hair up and my makeup to make me glow. Reception day I wanted my hair down with a more romantic look.
Mehndi – Neha Assar Artistry. She is my family friend as well and honestly the best mehndi artist out there hands down! Not only is she talented and beautiful but also easy to talk to and extremely caring.
How much time did mehndi take? 7 hours
How much coverage did you do? I did heavy coverage on the arms which went a little past my elbows. But not too heavy on the feet. It went mid way to my shin.
Panditji – Shukavak Dasaji
It was a Hindu ceremony in Sanskrit and English.
Did you have a printed program at the ceremony?
Yes, we did. It was not only a program to guide people on what is happening but also a fan to cover your face from the sun or fan yourself if it was hot.
Photographer: Greycard Photography
We love Greycard’s work. John is extremely talented and patient. He really captured what we wanted and pays close attention to detail.
Videography – April Robles from Robles Video Productions. I had to get April! She’s talented, has great vision and she’s the sweetest person ever! I am glad we went with her!