Wedding Essentials

Top South Asian Wedding Essentials Vendors in Texas: Desi Wedding Favors, Personalized Masks, Pooja Samagri, Indian Floral Garlands, Live Painters

After you’ve squared away your venue, décor, photographer, and other key vendors, there are also other wedding essentials that are important not to save for the last minute! We’ve overviewed key essentials, including wedding favors, floral garlands & bouquets, pooja samagri, and live painters in the FAQ at the bottom of the page to help you make sure you have the details covered.



Wedding favors

Wedding gifts for guests are a symbolic gesture and can be a memorable keepsake. Here is a compilation of Q&A to help you choose the best wedding favors that suit your budget and also save time. Note that you'll find top wedding favors in Dallas, top wedding favors in Houston, and top wedding favors in Austin featured above.


I am having an Indian wedding. Do I still need to give wedding favors?

While you don’t need to give wedding favors, they are often given at weddings. Traditionally, families give the guests a box of sweets or mithai after the bidaai. You can opt to give mithai or other favors according to your budget and preferences. We’ve included ideas below.


Are wedding favors given only on the wedding day?

No. You can give wedding favors as a token of appreciation to the guests for other ceremonies as well such as the pithi, mehendi, and sangeet.


What are the best gifts or favor options for the haldi, mehendi, and sangeet?

In addition to the favors mentioned in our recent blog post about top mehndi favors, other options to inspire you are included below. We recommend staying away from trinkets that may end up in the donation pile and looking for favors that your guests can either consume or use in their lives. The nice part about wedding favors is that even if you live in Texas, you can work with wedding favor vendors across the U.S. and abroad. 

For the Indian engagement, aka Misri (when the bride and groom exchange rings) or the first wedding event, you can hand out favors such as fruit baskets or personalized welcome bags with items like sunglasses, late-night snacks, a Hangover kit, and a weekend itinerary.


I want to give traditional wedding favors. What can I give my guests?


I want to gift my guests zero-waste favors or something eco-friendly. What are my options?

Given how lavish Desi weddings can get, it’s nice to gift something that leaves less of a footprint. We recommend avoiding glitter and micro-plastics. Some sustainable favor ideas include:


What types of wedding favors can we give children?


What is the best way to present the wedding favors and welcome bags?

There are many ways to present and distribute wedding favors and welcome bags, including:


How much should I spend on wedding favors for a Desi wedding?

While the average cost of wedding favors is $5-$10 per person, you may end up spending less if you DIY or more if you have multiple favors across events or more lavish favors. A box of sweets can easily be $10+ per family, and a traditional silver coin can be $15+.


Floral Garlands and Bouquets

Traditional flower garlands are an integral part of desi weddings. Garlands are exchanged during pre-wedding Hindu ceremonies at the Misri and Milni, and at the wedding (Jaimala or Varmala).


What are tips on selecting and using floral garlands?


Which flowers should I select for my jaimala?

While roses, marigolds, and jasmine as traditional favorites, you can opt for so many other flowers as well like lotus, tulips, and orchids.


Can I go for an artificial jaimala?

Yes. Contemporary weddings are popularizing the use of artificial jaimalas instead of the traditional floral garlands. These artificial jaimalas are made of cloth, pearl strings, and fake flowers in silk or velvet. These garlands allow for greater color & design variety, are easier to handle, more likely to stay intact, and sustainable if you choose to pass them on.


Can I use floral jewelry for rituals?

These days, floral jewelry for the bride as well as for guests is a popular choice. For the haldi ceremony, you can wear earrings, maang teeka, rings, necklace and bracelets made with natural flowers. Many brides opt for floral accessories or bunches of baby’s breath or fresh roses in their hair. Flowers can be used as-is or complemented with pearls or gold.


Which flowers are best for bridal or bridesmaids’ bouquets?

With budget in mind, it’s helpful to pick flowers in season to avoid flying the flowers in. Secondly, for the bridesmaids’ bouquets, pick a color that complements their lehengas or sarees. For the flower girls, a small bouquet of pastels or bright colors always looks nice.


What factors should I keep in mind before finalizing garlands and the vendor you work with?

The following checklist will help you finalize the best garlands, be they for décor, puja or as jaimalas:

  1. Check the experience of the flower vendor working with South Asian weddings
  2. Ask for the availability of flowers during your wedding (including what will be in season)
  3. Enquire about the cancellation/refund policy
  4. Ask for details on price, theme, and maintenance required of flowers for both décor and mandap
  5. Make sure you insist on only fresh flowers. Ask for the delivery and timings of the delivery to avoid last-minute hassles.


Pooja Saamagri or Saaman

Traditionally, all Hindu weddings start with Ganesh pujan or sundar kaand (from Ramayana). Lord Ganesh is also known as vighnaharta or remover of obstacles. For this reason, even on wedding cards Hindus sometimes include the shloka or verse – vakratunda mahakaya suryakoti samaprabha – an ode to Lord Ganesha. The puja is performed by the priest or panditji for an auspicious start to the wedding and to seek divine blessings. For this auspicious puja to the needs of a Hindu wedding ceremony to the chooda ceremony, we’ve included some tips and checklists on what pooja items you may want to purchase ahead of the wedding. We recommend talking to your priest to ensure your list is accurate and comprehensive.


Essential tips

Before we address some common questions, let’s look at a few helpful pointers:


List of pooja items

Here is a quick, go-to list of items you need for pooja or pooja saamagri/saaman for a traditional Hindu wedding and havan, including pheras. However, please consult your priest for a list of pooja items for a proper havan:

For a Gujrati or Rajasthani wedding:

  1. Turmeric Powder
  2. Kumkum or sindhoor
  3. Sandal Wood (Chandan) powder
  4. Agar Batti (Incense Sticks)
  5. Camphor 
  6. Betel Leaves (Paan ke pattey and supari)
  7. Garlands or Jaimala
  8. Flowers (roses or marigold)
  9. Fruits, including bananas and others
  10. Coconuts
  11. Rice
  12. Honey
  13. Milk
  14. Ghee
  15. Silver coins
  16. Sugar
  17. Sugar Candy (Misri/Kalakanda)
  18. Deepam (Lamp), oil, lighter or matchbox, and cotton wicks
  19. Kalasam or kalasha (small brass pot)
  20. Mauli or kalawa (red thread)
  21. Panchaamrit (made of five items such as milk, ghee, yogurt, sugar, and honey)
  22. A small idol or picture of God for the puja
  23. Puffed rice or kheer
  24. Sweets or mithai for prasad
  25. Laung, elaichi (cloves and green cardamom)
  26. Ganga jal
  27. Aam ki lakdi or wood from mango tree for the havan
  28. Dupatta or stole

For a Telugu marriage:

  1. Jilakara/Bellam
  2. Thalambralu/Biyyam (Washed and Dried Rice)
  3. Walking Stick
  4. Umbrella
  5. Sandals
  6. Towel
  7. Hand Fan
  8. Book
  9. Mirror
  10. Kaatuka (kajal)
  11. Comb

For Tamil style ceremony:

  1. Jeeragam/Vellam
  2. Yellow Rice
  3. Walking Stick
  4. Umbrella
  5. Sandals
  6. Towel
  7. Hand Fan
  8. Book
  9. Mirror
  10. Kan Mai (kajal)
  11. Comb
  12. Paruppu Thenga


Who should buy the pooja saaman?

The pooja saaman may be arranged by the panditji or the temple. Alternately, the priest may ask a family member to arrange for. Make sure you ask for a list and who is responsible just as you discuss the pooja day and timings. Here, it is important to note that the priest may select a timing that is auspicious according to nakshatras or how the stars are aligned. In order to make sure you’re not running late for the ceremony, it’s important to have all of the saamagri accordingly.


Masks and PPE for your safe Desi wedding

To stay safe and keep your guests safe with the pandemic, wearing masks is encouraged. For weddings, you can order special masks to match your lehenga, sherwani, or décor.

There are plenty of masks to pick from:

Important tips to remember:

Whether you are a guest or a host of an intimate wedding event or larger reception, remember to respect the safety of yourself and others.

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