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zz Nikki & Sam: A Multicultural Wedding at Highpointe Estate by an Indian Wedding Photographer

Since we are an Indian wedding photographer and videographer and have a soft spot for weddings, we understand that a wedding is just the first chapter in your adventure book. We know that a wedding doesn’t symbolize a destination, but rather, a mile marker, denoting the start of the next leg of your journey together as a couple. The beginning of your marriage is certainly worthy of all the pomp and circumstance you dream of because your nuptials symbolize the union of two people and two families. In some cases, a new marriage also represents the blending of two cultures, like it did for Nikki and Sam’s multicultural wedding at Highpointe Estate.

Their two-day Southeast Asian wedding linked Nikki and Sam in matrimony, but it also blended Nikki’s Indian heritage with Sam’s Western culture. The result was an awe-inspiring, multicultural wedding celebration filled with traditions both old and new. The love Nikki and Sam have for each other and their family, was evident from the haldi to the sangeet to the wedding day itself. Together with their seasoned Indian wedding planner, Cheryl with Glitzzy Events, they ensured that their guests were well taken care of and that they also had a blast!

In this post, you’ll step into the shoes of one of Nikki and Sam’s guests, as you discover the beauty and joy of their multicultural wedding at Highpointe Estate. You’ll smile at their delightful wedding color palette, marvel at the grandeur of their ceremony mandap, and dance alongside them from the baraat all the way until the end of their epic reception.

Without further ado, we present Nikki and Sam’s multicultural wedding!

The Haldi & Pelikutru (Pre-Wedding Tradition)

The day before Nikki and Sam’s multicultural wedding at Highpointe Estate, they held their haldi and pelikutru! These are very auspicious Indian wedding traditions that involve the bride and groom’s family members smearing turmeric on their faces. Its bright yellow hue symbolizes the cleansing and purification of the mind, body, and soul before the wedding.

Nikki and Sam’s haldi and pelikutru took place at the Sheraton Austin Georgetown Hotel . Sam donned a lovely shade of buttercup while Nikki was draped in tangerine and goldenrod for the occasion. During this ceremony, their closest family members and friends prayed over them and daubed their faces and feet with the haldi turmeric mixture. The backdrop for this ritual consisted of yellow and white fabric draping and hanging floral garlands. The combination of bright yellows and oranges was sunny enough to make anyone smile and complemented the haldi perfectly.

Everyone’s joy in this ceremony was infectious! Loved ones, young and old, got to partake in the fun, creating an atmosphere of excitement and enthusiasm. This energy came across in a beautifully authentic way in the final photos! Here at The Bird & The Bear , capturing every aspect of the day while blending into the background is our specialty. While we step forward to assist and guide you as needed, we never interfere with the special moments with your closest people.

The Sangeet (Music Night)

Later that night, Nikki and Sam held their sangeet, which is a high-energy night of traditional dances, upbeat music, and unadulterated fun! This sweet couple both wore peach attire with gold accents and this was the first time that Nikki really got to showcase her henna! As is tradition for Indian weddings, Nikki and her closest female family members and friends got henna done on their hands and arms in the most gorgeous and intricate patterns imaginable the night before. Henna by Neeti’s design work was simply stunning and we love how the henna truly popped in photos and on film!

The sangeet took place in one of the Sheraton’s ballrooms. Yara with Unique Design & Events completely transformed the space with an exquisite backdrop of orange, turquoise, and gold fabric draping. She then set an ivory couch with orange throw pillows and gold lanterns in varying heights in front of the backdrop, setting the perfect stage for Nikki and Sam to take the spotlight.

When the sangeet began, the caterer Biryani Pot served guests a delicious dinner of traditional Indian fare. Nikki and Sam themselves then kickstarted the party with a performance of their own to open the dance floor. Their amazing rhythm and choreography were second to none! It was particularly striking to see Nikki’s orange and peach dress twirl against their backdrop. It showed that they truly planned every last detail, from the hues of the backdrop to the same shades in Nikki and Sam’s attire.

The nearlyweds’ family and friends then took turns performing for them. As an experienced Indian wedding photographer and videographer, we have worked many sangeets and they always make us feel like we have the best jobs in the world! They are incredibly lighthearted, energetic, and entertaining, and that kind of vibe is contagious! We have just as good a time at sangeets as the guests do, and we like to think that shows in the way we photograph and video the event!

Setting the Stage at Highpointe Estate

Then, on a beautiful, sunny day at Highpointe Estate, it was Nikki and Sam’s wedding day! When our Indian wedding photography and videography team arrived that morning, we started capturing detail shots, including Nikki’s magnificent lavender and gold wedding sari, the ganesh, and of course, the mandap.

Monarch Event Rentals brought this couple’s wedding ceremony dreams to life by setting a glossy white stage with a golden, open-frame arch. They fastened the most beautiful, fluffy floral to the arch, so that the bright pink and orange blooms added an instant dose of happiness to the overall aesthetic. Their team also hung small, delicate florals as a backdrop, cascading down from the back of the arch. To complete the look, intricate gold ceremony chairs were set atop the stage, ready for Nikki, Sam, and the proceedings of the day.

Before the ceremony began, Nikki and Sam did a first look. As a more modern wedding event, a first look is not only a fun and private way to see one another for the first time that day, but it also greatly helps with logistics. Doing a first look allows us to get portraits done before the ceremony, so that you can spend more quality time with your loved ones post-ceremony. As a bonus, a first look is always so romantic! We’ve seen both brides and grooms tear up, read private vows, exchange gifts, share sweet nothings, and just generally revel in the emotional anticipation of their marriage. This certainly was the case for Nikki and Sam, as they wore the brightest smiles and shared the biggest hug when Sam turned around that morning.

Wedding day bliss was all over their faces and it was our pleasure getting to capture this authentic moment for this special couple.

The Baraat (Groom’s Entrance)

One of our favorite parts of being an Indian wedding photographer is getting to be part of the baraat! If you thought the sangeet was a fun dance party, just wait until you see Sam’s baraat, or his entrance to the wedding ceremony. A dhol player and Nachle DJ Entertainment made sure to crank up the Nadaswaram music for this extravaganza, filled with lively dancing, marching, and cheering. Sam’s friends hoisted him up on their shoulders, and colorful smoke bombs blew through the air as the parade made their way through the parking lot and up to the chapel’s entrance.

When they arrived, Nikki’s parents greeted Sam and formally welcomed him into their family. This signified that the wedding ceremony could officially commence!

A Multicultural Wedding Ceremony at Highpointe Estate

Every wedding ceremony is beautiful and special, but there is something especially sacred about a Southeast Asian wedding. The traditions within the ceremony are typically different from couple to couple, depending on which part of India they’re from. Nikki and Sam’s ceremony included a sanctified series of rituals, from the Kanyadaanam (giving away of the bride by her parents) to the Mangalya Dharanam (tying of the sacred thread and exchange of garlands) to the Talambralu (showering of rice). It was touching to see their family involved in the ceremony as well. Towards the end of the ceremony, Nikki and Sam accepted blessings from their parents and grandparents before the priest declared them husband and wife!

A Multicultural Wedding Reception at Highpointe Estate

After lunch served by Biryani Pot, Nikki had her hair and makeup touched up by Tansia Beauty & Bridal, and then she and her new husband both changed into their reception attire. For Nikki, that meant an ivory sari with aqua accents and for Sam, that meant a Western, navy blue suit. Before the evening reception began, we took sunset portraits around Highpointe Estate, and the light could not have been dreamier! It worked perfectly to enhance the beauty of the property and the newlyweds.

The night began with the guests arriving via chartered buses from Austin Charter Services for the cocktail hour, where Biryani Pot fried fresh appetizers onsite for everyone. Then, all the guests were invited into Highpointe Estate’s Gathering Room for the wedding reception. There, they found the dinner tables dressed in blush linens, turquoise napkins, gold chargers, and pink and orange floral centerpieces. Chandeliers and white fabric draping hung from the ceiling’s wooden beams, and pink uplights set the room aglow. Next to the sweetheart table stood the newlyweds’ 3-tiered wedding cake, complete with fresh pastel florals and a mini replica of their cat!

The reception kicked off with the introduction of the new Mr. and Mrs. and their closest family members. They shared their first dance together as well as with each of their parents. Speeches from both sets of parents, Sam’s best friends, and the newlyweds themselves were given before the dinner buffet opened. As Cheryl with Glitzzy Events and Nachle DJ Entertainment released each table, the guests would take pictures with Nikki and Sam, ensuring that they got to say hello to everyone.

The rest of the night was marked by open dancing and general merriment! Everyone enjoyed getting to let loose and celebrate, making the most of their time together. At the end of the night, everyone lined up outside with sparklers and Nikki and Sam made their grand exit by walking through the lights and their loved ones. It was so special to see them lock eyes with their people and each other, as they shared one last amazing moment together before their wedding came to a beautiful and perfect end.

Congratulations Nikki and Sam! We’re so glad to know you both and were honored to be your Indian wedding photographer and videographer. Thank you for entrusting us to capture the magic of your wedding weekend! Cheers to a lifetime of happiness!

Let’s Work Together!

The Bird & The Bear is a boutique, award-winning studio that offers Indian wedding photography and videography! We are a one-stop full-service studio that loves to create beautiful photos and films of our couples – all with our signature, playful style.

We would love to capture all the candid, intimate, and fun moments of your special day, just as we did for Nikki and Sam. If you’re ready to check off both photo and video from your to-do list, reach out today and let’s make it happen!

Springdale Farm Wedding Photographer | Matt & Kate

Springdale Farm Wedding Photographer | Matt & Kate

I had such an amazing time capturing Matt’s and Kate’s ridiculously fun Springdale Farm wedding this past fall. It was definitely a challenge not to find yourself in a fit of laughter when you’re around Matt and Kate. They say, “You are the company you keep.” If this is true, then Matt and Kate are in for a lifetime full of happiness and love. 
I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard and smiled so much at a wedding before, even as a guest! We were all shedding tears of laughter during their gorgeous, outdoor ceremony, performed by the Dude (one of their hilarious uncles)! Matt’s and Kate’s love and positivity towards one another was so incredibly infectious throughout the entire night. The palpable love flowing between them was so strong, it filled the air and was felt by all.

Cheers to the Love Birds

Their reception was outside as well, and it was just as incredible and beautiful as their ceremony. It had a familiar, rustic feel, which I loved, and allowed for everyone to feel welcome and relaxed. The lighting, trees, and décor cultivated such a comfortable yet romantic atmosphere, and everyone was absolutely wonderful and kind. The entire wedding was just so beautiful and organic; it was certainly a magical and unforgettable night.
Everything ran s incredibly smoothly with help from Stephanie at Frills Consulting. If there’s one thing I would suggest splurging on for your wedding day, aside from your photography of course, it would have to be a great day-of coordinator like Stephanie. What a difference a bit of organized help makes! 
Matt and Kate are so beautifully in love. Photographing their special day was such an amazing experience. I wish them a lifetime of love and happiness as they begin their adventure of life together as husband and wife, and I can’t wait to see where this road takes them!
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A beautiful day celebrating an even more beautiful couple. We are so blessed to have been their Springdale Farm Wedding Photographer!

Winfield Inn | Laurel & Josh

Winfield Inn

Laurel & Josh were married at the Winfield Inn in Kyle, Texas.  You may remember Laurel from her bridal portraits!  They planned an amazing day full of so many special touches.  Their vintage travel themed decor was mostly collected by Laurel and her wonderful mother.  We love the plum and berry color palette, the fun games during the cocktail hour, and so much more.  Did we mention they brought their sweet pup Oattie?  Or that a bear showed up and they had to fight it off during their first dance?  Things got crazy, and we are so happy we were there to capture it all for them.  I could’ve posted hundreds of photos that I loved from this day,  but check out a few of my favorites below.

The Winfield Inn in Kyle, Texas was the perfect spot for their destination wedding and they also catered with some amazing food.  Also, Meg & Laura of the Winfield made everything run seamlessly!

The amazing floral design was by Petals Ink.

Beautiful hair and make-up by Mindy Orsak.

Travel themed invitations by the bride herself!

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Austin Bridal Photography | Rusti

Rusti is so glam and gorgeous!  I still can’t get over what a fabulous bride she was!  Check back soon to see their awesome wedding!

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Mayfield Park | Austin Engagement Photography | Meagan & Will

Seriously, how cute are these two?  This engagement session at Mayfield Park here in Austin has been one of my favorites of all time!  Meagan & Will went thrifting the day of the shoot and came up with this whole set themselves.  So awesome!

Check out their Save the Date video and some of my favorite shots from the session!


See more of this adorable couple after the jump!

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Austin Engagement Photography | Ashley & Garrett

I’m so stoked that Ashley & Garrett found us!  They’re just happy & laid back & we had a fantastic afternoon with them hitting up South Congress and a vineyard just outside of town during their Austin engagement shoot!

Their wedding is in January and I can’t wait – apparently there’s going to be some awesome Czech dance (will update with pics, then)!

Here are just a couple of sneak peeks!

Elsie & JD | Austin Wedding Photography

Elsie & JD are just a couple of seriously beautiful people!  They were married this July in one of the most gorgeous ceremonies we’ve ever been to.

Here are a few of my favorites from the day!

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Brooke & Chris | Austin Engagement Photography

Seriously, we had such a blast during Brooke & Chris’s Austin sunflower engagement session, and video!  They’re such an awesome couple (and you know we love anyone who loves their dogs as much as we love our’s)!  We spent a beautiful afternoon on South Congress and then heading out to a beautiful sunflower field just outside of town.  Their wedding is in March of 2013, and we can not wait!

This adorable session was also published on Style Me Pretty Texas!

Tammy & Cody | Austin Engagement Photography

Tammy & Cody are so cute together!  We began their session at Old Settler’s Park and then moved out to a vineyard!

Here are just a couple of my favorites from this sunny, happy morning!

Elsie & JD | Beaumont Engagement Photography

Elsie & JD are fabulous, and have awesome friends with really cool homes!  Here are a few from their Beaumont Engagement Session!  Check out their really cool antique items, such as that door with the stain glass!  It was such a fun shoot and we are happy to know this beautiful couple.  Check it out!


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Niki & Bill | Houston Wedding Photography | Butler’s Courtyard

Niki & Bill are seriously cool people.  The kind of people who have a giant boombox playing old school rap during bridal prep and who were lifted up like doing the horah without being Jewish.

I just love them!  And we had a blast at their wedding!  I wish we could post their full-length video here, because it cracks me up like none other!

Here are a few from the day!

Continue reading “Niki & Bill | Houston Wedding Photography | Butler’s Courtyard”

Austin Wedding Photography | Katie & Drew

Katie & Drew were recently married in my hometown of Livingston, TX!  Their wedding was awesome and Katie and her sister-in-law put so much thought and effort into making it all beautiful and fun.  They DIY’d pennant banners, filled a building with light, and even covered the tables in white paper so everyone could draw all over it, adding to the bright, colorful ambiance!  It all SO fit Katie’s fun, cute personality!

Here are a few of my favorites from the day, and their highlight video below it!