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If there’s always something you would love to revisit in the past, it’s a wedding. “Constantly played and replayed are moments like a bride’s walk down the aisle and the wedding ceremony.” The festivities, the parting and the start of a new life aren’t scripted, but there’s always a story. Usually they are narrated over casual laughs, when the wife looks over her glimmering ring. The hardwork of every wedding planner is appreciated after the weddings. On that special day, they’re not  the center of attraction but they’re in the center of all the wedding drama! If the bride and groom can never stop dreaming about a wedding, the planner can’t stop visualizing it. “An imaginary wedding takes place in the minds of every wedding planner, right before the real wedding happens,” says Arabind.

Arabind’s pillar of support-his wife- Anu is just as passionate as him about weddings. She stands by him, right from the planning to the execution stage of the wedding. Quite amused by the name ‘Tamarind’, I quizzed him about its significance. He answered with a broad smile, “Tamarind is nothing but a polishing agent used to polish brass and other metals. As wedding planners, we polish people’s weddings and give them a brand new experience”. He strongly believes that the success of every wedding plan lies in the smooth flow of events and the guest’s comfort level. The excessive gesticulations of uniformed event planners with microphones and the hasty actions are a complete no-no for weddings.

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A Relishing Moment

Looking back to the first wedding Arabind organized, with nostalgia he narrated, “Indeed it was the most touching and memorable wedding to me. The client was working for a corporate company abroad, and all their corporate events were organised by a British company called Malta. We were happy and excited to plan out their wedding as it was the first time they signed another company. As the wedding came to a closure, the client called me to his house. I was worried as to what he would say and soon realised that they were extremely happy with the way the event was organised. An appreciation in front of the entire family was quite a touching moment for me. When the client lauded that we were ‘the best event management company,’ a year’s hard work was paid off. The happiness was evident in their eyes and that is the biggest emotional moment for a wedding planner.”


Prepping Up!

According to Arabind, conceptualisation of a wedding takes place right from the moment they enter the client’s house. He points out the kind of décor used in the interiors give an inkling of the type of wedding they aspire to have.  A person who owns a house in contemporary style with sleek sofas and furniture will want an elegant wedding. “Knowing your client thoroughly as the conversation unfolds is the first step to planning. Our first briefing with the clients will have three people from our side to get different perspectives on the same idea. “In order to bring clarity in the décor, we provide clients a 3-D view of the venue for them to get better understanding. A meticulously planned wedding would be free from last minute emergencies,” said Arabind. He claims that the flow behind any wedding comes from 99% planning and just 1% execution.

Just as how they make the guests comfortable, the theme of the wedding is also viewed from the perspective of the guests as comments from people matters. “An idea with a tint of Western touch might not be accepted by the people attending a marriage in Kajnirapilly but the people of Kochi will accept it. It was quite challenging for me when I had to plan out a Syrian Catholic wedding as too many out of the box ideas could not be adopted for their wedding. I suggested that they make it a divine theme, and a number of kids were dressed as angels.

They lined up as the bride made her appearance to the song ‘Aatmavin Thingalkudam’ from Amen, the movie had just released at that time. It was a different experience for the family of the bridegroom as well as the guests who attended the wedding,” said Arabind.


Standing Tall

When asked about the initiatives of Tamarind, he proudly said that one of the specialities of his company is the provision for wedding shopping assistance. It requires a lot of patience and by saying so he turned to his wife and smiled at her for the support she gives for  the idea. “I enjoy going for wedding shopping with the bride more than going for my shopping sessions,” said Anu Arabind. “The happiness on the bride’s face when she finds the wedding dress of her dreams is just beautiful. Shopping assistance is useful to people outside Kochi as they don’t know where to get the right Kancheepuram sari, and we have places where we get custom stitched gowns and jewellery too for the bride,” she added.

Responsible wedding planning is another initiative by Tamarind. It aims to educate the clients not to fork out too much on unwanted resources. They inform clients to bring down the number of guests that minimises the quantity of food to be catered which in turn reduce wastage. They encourage the use of e-invites, natural and organic materials for the bouquet and reusable flex materials for the décor.  They try to setup an outdoor wedding-if the climate is favourable- as it reduces the consumption of energy used by AC. For return gifts, they prefer to give tree saplings. As return gifts are not so popular in Kerala they ensure that the bridegroom plants a tree at the venue to show the obligation towards  nature. “We try our best to plant a Tamarind tree.” It’s an act of simplicity, but also a gesture that symbolizes  every marriage like a tree of life..


Text: Atheena Wilson

Photo credits: Tamarind