We love capturing traditional Indian weddings. But Neha’s and Swati’s was a truly special one. Their Denver Sangeet + wedding was unique since traditionally South Asian families are pretty conservative. But as a same-sex couple, Neha and Swati found tons of support from their family and friends and created a traditional ceremony, all while throwing gender roles out the window. Their wedding film turned out wonderfully, and we are honored they chose Aflātis to be a part of their big day.
Neha and Swati met the way so many couples do today—online. Swati was moving to Ann Arbor, Michigan for a new job and was looking to meet people in the area. Funnily, being a Colorado girl and not too familiar with the geography in the region, she didn’t realize reaching out to Neha in Minneapolis, Minnesota meant that Lake Michigan and the state of Wisconsin were still between them!
Still, the two began a long-distance relationship, seeing each other whenever they could. Neha’s work took her to Florida, but the two met up when possible. After a few years, they decided to move to Denver together, where Swati had moved away from originally.
When it came time to propose, Neha began to have a ring made. As she emailed back and forth with the jeweler, it was so difficult to keep it a secret! When she finally had the ring in hand, Neha and Swati went on a trip to Argentina with their good friend. The three make a point of traveling together often, so Swati wasn’t expecting a proposal. But Neha couldn’t think of any more of a romantic place to propose! While their friend, Kavita, walked around to the other side of the pond to sneak pictures, Neha shared her love with Swati and pulled out the ring. Through lots of tears, Swati said yes!
Swati also had her own plan to propose to Neha. A year later, Swati arranged to have Neha meet her at a park after work. Swati was playing with their dog Gobi until Neha arrived. Then she let Gobi run up to Neha to say “hello.” After a few moments of puppy snuggles, Neha realized there was a ring on his collar!
Traditional, Yet Modern Denver Sangeet + Wedding
If you’ve been to a South Asian wedding before, you know there are a lot of beautiful traditions that span over several days. For Neha + Swati, observing many of their traditional Indian staples was important for their Denver Sangeet + wedding. But since they are a same-sex couple, they got to be creative with certain aspects of the wedding.
For example, one feature of a Sangeet is when the groom and both sets of parents wait at the end of a long aisle while the bride walks down during the Mangalashtak (a Hindu mantra). Traditionally, there is a veil in front of the groom that is dropped when the bride arrives, signifying the beginning of their joined life. Neha and Swati decided to both walk down the aisle together and their uncles held the veil in between them. Once Swati and Neha arrived at the altar, their uncles dropped the veil.
Another unique twist is they were able to find a Hindu priestess to perform the Sangeet, which are actually quite rare. Neha and Swati’s families were both incredibly supportive, so just the fact that they were able to have a traditional Indian wedding as a same-sex couple is relatively uncommon.
We were able to capture some incredible footage throughout and we think their wedding film captures Neha and Swati as a couple wonderfully. Neha and Swati, we are so honored you chose Aflātis to create your wedding film and we wish you the best!
When we asked Neha + Swati what it was like to work with Aflātis, Neha shared this. “Once I started following Aflātis’s Instagram, I was hooked. He was amazing to work with. Both Swati and I are pretty shy and don’t especially love being the center of attention but he made the whole experience so easy and comfortable. On top of it, because we had a pretty traditional Indian wedding, we had a pretty tight schedule and Adam was so organized and made sure we stuck to our timeline that weekend.”
Thank you so much for the kind words, you too! Take care!
Venues: Sangeet — Field House
Wedding/Reception— Grand Hyatt Denver
Wedding — India’s Restaurant
Cake: Grand Hyatt Denver
Décor/Flowers: DNM Events
Hair/Makeup: Leeda Rassekh
Attire/Costume Jewelry: Priya Saluja
Photographer: Hitch & Sparrow
Coordinators: Sangeet — IMES Events
Wedding — Celia Smith, Grand Hyatt
Henna: Hummingbird Henna, Anita Bohrer
Rings/Wedding Bands: Thomas Barhe