A Guide to Punjabi Weddings – Mehndi and Sangeet

One of the most entertaining functions in a Punjabi wedding is the sangeet night, when excitement for the Big Day is expressed through song and dance! This is usually allocated as the Mehndi night too.

Procedure

Generally, the sangeet night takes place two days before the wedding day. It is usually held in the evening at the wedding home – although many people opt for function venues for larger capacity.

There tend to be more women and children on this function. The evening begins with traditional folk songs; called kori’s (if you’re on the groom’s side) or suhaag (if you’re on the bride’s side). A good explanation of what these traditional Punjabi songs, and other lok geet mean can be found here. If you would like copies of common kori or suhaag folk songs then get in touch with Epic Events!

Punjabi sangeet theme

Once the night has opened with these traditional songs, the wedding guests are free to be as wild and fun as they please by singing mischievous lyrics, usually aimed at the close members of the family. This is accompanied by dancing.

Having a DJ is not uncommon, and is usually appreciated by the younger guests! We work in collaboration with Soul Sounds Music, who cater for all functions.

Arabic-themed sangeet setting

During the singing and dancing, food is provided and mehndi is applied. Although some people book professional mehndi artistes, it can also be applied by any creative member of the family. For the recipe, checkout this video.

Purpose

In some communities, mehndi is applied to both the bride and groom. It is traditionally applied in intricate designs on the hands and feet, although it is not restricted to just these areas. Some wedding guests like to get creative and apply it to the upper arm, stomach or even their back!

For a bride, the longer the mehndi is kept on, the stronger the love between her and her husband is thought to be. And likewise, if the groom applies it too. Although, some communities believe the darker the mehndi turns out, the more the mother-in-law will like her prospective daughter-in-law!

In India, Memndi is worn by women for many functions and festivals. It is considered auspicious and a symbol of celebration.

*Epic Events Tip*

To enhance the colour of the mehndi, it should be kept on for as long as possible. To prevent it from crumbling off when it dries, dab a mixture of lemon and sugar on to it with cotton wool. This should only be done when the mehndi is dry. This sticky mixture helps to hold the mehndi in place for longer.

When you want to remove it, avoid washing it off with water. Instead rub your hands together. Then apply mustard oil. This oil can be applied several times to enhance or maintain the colour of the mehndi.

Check list

  • Mehndi cones – can be bought readymade or made at home
  • Lemon, sugar and cotton wool – for the locking agent
  • Mustard oil – for post-maintenance
  • Kori or suhaag songs – booklets will help if your guests don’t know the words
  • Music!

So this was the Mehndi and Sangeet night. Next week, we’ll be finding out what happens on the Jaago night!

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About Raj Bilkhu

Raj Kaur Bilkhu is a journalist from Birmingham, UK.
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3 Responses to A Guide to Punjabi Weddings – Mehndi and Sangeet

  1. Pingback: A Guide to Punjabi Weddings | Epic Events

  2. Pingback: Sunday – It's All About Me.

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