Intricate and elegant: the application of henna designs is one of the most beautiful bridal preparation traditions.
Worn by brides across the globe, Mehndi is a traditional Vedic custom. In fact, the use of Mehndi and turmeric is described in the earliest Hindu Vedic ritual books. Therefore, it remains an important part of many Indian wedding celebrations.
Centralised around the concept of ‘awakening inner light’, many brides-to-be choose to reflect this with a ‘sun in their palm’ design: though there are so many beautiful designs to inspire you. However you choose to incorporate the Mehndi tradition, this week, The Beauty Bible answers your henna application questions whilst inspiring you with stunning designs for your wedding day
Where do I apply my Mehndi?
Traditionally, henna is applied to the hands (front and palms) and feet. However, you can chose anything from a subtle design to full body henna, it’s up to you! Whether you’re honouring a tradition or admiring an art, your designs can be completely personal.
When should I apply my Mehndi?
Henna stains need time to deepen and mature. Therefore, it’s recommended that the henna is applied at least a full day before the wedding; ideally, up to three days before. This is because the henna paste flakes off as it dries: leaving a beautiful pattern below.
How should I apply my Mehndi?
The Mehndi ceremony is an important part of the bridal preparations. Many brides-to-be choose to have a Mehndi party with female friends and relatives to be pampered in the lead up the wedding and have the henna is applied. It also signifies that it’s time to relax and prepare for your wedding: that beautiful design has to stay intact!
Which patterns and designs shall I choose?
The continuation of patterns across hands is a beautiful representation of a design. You could choose, for example, a heart that was only revealed when both palms were placed together: perfectly symbolic for your wedding day. You may also notice that brides often incorporate the initials of a loved one, such as the groom-to-be, within the design.
That said, there’s no obligation for a full, bold design if that’s not your style. A subtle Mehndi pattern is just as effective, and may suit brides having a multi-cultural wedding who want to honour and respect two traditions.
Which colours shall I choose?
Whether you choose a subtle or brighter hue, there’s no end to the choices available! You may decide on a strong, bold colour at the opposite end of the spectrum to your sari. Or, perhaps pick a colour and design that complements your bouquet or reception décor? If you’re not sure about a bold colour, black or white designs can look equally striking.
Inspired, and looking to gather more Mehndi ideas for your big day? Come visit The Wedding Affair: A World of Culture at The Queens, Leeds, in April. We’ll be showcasing the best of the local suppliers across a full cultural spectrum so, whatever traditions you may be incorporating into your big day, you’ll be sure to find the inspiration here.
We’d love to see the Mehndi designs you chose for your big day. Did you sneak a hidden message for your groom into design? We can’t wait to see your photos and share your stories: drop us a line at [email protected].