Meet Hansika Chandiramani, founder of HC Media and co-founder, Gaurav Kumar – the competitive hustler (yes, Hansika!) met the eligible and quick-witted bachelor Gaurav through a bunch of friends and the rest is history! WM had the pleasure to sit down and speak with the duo who discovered the better, the cooler and way more unconventional way to get married. Read on, as Hansika walks us through her grand wedding plans.
I was introduced to Gaurav through common friends – we were just friends at first and then a mutual attraction blossomed. My family was at a stage where they wanted me to start seeing suitable boys to marry and I guess that’s when he decided to get me a ring. After he popped the question I couldn’t even believe I said yes – I’ve been such a tomboy my whole life, the thought of getting married just didn’t sink in. My parents met him and loved him – our Roka happened in Jan and now after a year of seeing each other and ten months of courtship later we are here, getting married.
The proposal was the sweetest thing. He got this wooden box made, once it was popped open it had the Super Mario cut-out figure inside (Mario himself and the Princess he rescues) and it read, “Player 1 ready, will you be my Player 2?” It had the ring inside and of course I said Y-E-S! I think the best part of the evening was that he took me to Imagica, the amusement park to celebrate this occasion, he just knew that I have this little child in me.
So, when we finally got around to planning my wedding, the whole idea of ‘the bride who sold her wedding’ actually started off as a joke. Let’s be real, it’s really expensive to get married in Mumbai – every outfit you pick is nothing short of a lac and it’s not like I couldn’t afford it but I am always very open to the idea of renting outfits and that’s where it all started. Every big celebrity borrows outfits and when they do it, it’s absolutely alright. But, if I were to pitch the idea to someone about the thought of me wearing a rented outfit for my wedding they would gasp and wonder if I was broke or in some financial crisis to have even dared to think of such an idea. Well, no! It’s just the smarter thing to do – when are we ever going to wear them again? So when I was looking through a bunch of outfits, I thought to myself, I’m going to get sponsors to do this for me.
When I presented the idea to Gaurav, I really thought he’d think I’ve lost my mind but I was surprised because he thought it was an absolutely brilliant concept and he’s someone who understands digital marketing more than me as we run our company together. So we created this presentation and started the process of calling the brands sometime around June – the first few brands were so shocked and confused, they didn’t even understand the concept, we were asked all sorts of questions. Finally, we got them to come on-board and Deliciae Cakes were one of the first brands to do so. And then it just became a domino effect from thereon. Of course, it took a while for people to understand the concept and I met a lot of them in person because they really insisted on meeting me in the flesh, they were really curious about this girl who’s planning on selling her wedding and doing something so innovative.
I Have Several Brands Onboard
Every detail of this wedding has been planned very unconventionally. There are a lot of elements to the wedding that aren’t present in many of the usual ones – especially given the fact that I’m getting my outfits sponsored. My entire thought process consisted of doing something digitally big – for so many years we’ve been doing in-film branding but nobody has thought of taking that and doing in-wedding film branding and whenever I said this statement to big brands, they would say, “What a brilliant idea! We want to come on board”. But when you sit to think about it, it’s not something unreal that I thought of.
There are so many positive aspects to look forward to with the outcome of this concept. Everybody is getting so much publicity out of it – there’s so much cross promotion happening between brands themselves. I’m getting to wear the best designers without even having to pay for it. If it was even another girl who was getting married I would suggest her to go on and Flyrobe it, because what are you going to do with those expensive outfits that are only meant for a one time wear – if you can rent an outfit for less than half the money, look stunning on your day and return it later then why not?! Brides claim that the outfit has emotional value to it, but I know for a fact that 10 days after the wedding most of them forget about it.
The Dresses I Picked From Flyrobe
Mehendi: This was the one outfit that was decided after I planned what my décor was going to look like – we wanted gaddas in bright colours, there were going to be a lot of colourful little pinwheels so I didn’t want to choose anything overpowering or glittery. I finally picked up a lehenga-choli set by Malvika Talwar that has a lot of orange and pink thread-work embroidery present, it’s really colourful and lovely.
Cocktail: I was initially looking at a lot of heavily embroidered outfits compared to what I actually picked and I realized how uncomfortable they might be to walk in and my first thought was, “How would I dance?” I wanted to be the bride that dances till 4 am on her wedding, so I picked up something light, it’s not too tight fitted a gown and it doesn’t have the uncomfortable mermaid fit where the women can barely walk let alone shake a leg in it. So I opted for a princess cut gown by Kalki Fashion that has a glittery gold element to it.
Wedding: I was quite sure that I didn’t want to wear the clichéd ‘red’ but wear pink instead – I’m obsessed with the colour pink. My nails are the only thing that’s red just because the bride has to have an element of it in a wedding. I had this very clear vision that I wanted to wear a gorgeous lehenga with a short choli that had a deep cut back and that’s exactly what I got. I had a bunch of options to choose from but the moment I tried the pink one by Malvika Talwar, it was love at first sight, I just didn’t want to part with the outfit. It’s definitely the most loved outfit of all!
My baraat is the most fun detail of my wedding to plan, because it’s never been done before and I even took the liberty to print that out in the card – until the very last moment I had no idea or plan as to how I was going to do it or how would it be different from how a guy does his baraat. All I knew is that I had to have one for myself. Everybody who saw the card was completely thrilled about the whole ‘ladki ki baraat’ concept, my friends and family were calling me to know if there was an RSVP for this as they were so excited for it.
My advice to brides: Don’t fall into that thought process that it’s your wedding and there are going to be a lot of expenses made – don’t do that, be smart and use that money elsewhere, like we did – we bought a house. Go for a holiday, but don’t be pressurised and succumb to the fact that you need to be elaborate with your outfits and show the world that it’s your wedding day. I’ve seen people give up on their honeymoons to have that picture-perfect wedding, but at the end of the day, experiences matter over materialistic pleasures.