GetEthnic logo for mobile - Custom Made Wedding Wear Get Started with your custom made requirements - GetEthnic

South Indian Wedding – Culture & Traditions – A complete Guide

South Indian Wedding reflects the true culture and traditions of India. It’s full of life, fun, colors, food, music and love.

India is full of different cultures, a mixture of different languages, the cultures which follow different traditions and what not. It is like you coming to a country where people of different races, castes, religions and languages living in harmony and peace. But here we are not going to discuss how really Incredible India is!

North Indian and South Indian weddings are not only culturally different, instead different in all aspects. Whether it be about rituals, traditions, wedding attire and most importantly, food!!!

Credits: | Indian Wedding Dresses

So without further blabbering, let’s just head straight to various outfit ideas for a South Indian bride on her wedding day, making you go through the rituals and ceremonies that happen on the same day and how you can dress up for that, being a bride or guest attending South Indian Wedding.


1. Mangala Snanam

Mangala Snanam - South Indian WeddingCredits: | Get Custom Made Ethnic Wear


Now as the name might sound to many, it can be simplified to mangal snan, that is, purifying bath.

It happens to be the first ritual performed on the day of wedding wherein a paste of turmeric, sandalwood and kumkum is prepared by Sumangalis or married women.

Then some oil is applied on her hair with the paste later being applied on her face, feet and hands. After this ritual, the bride takes bath in holy water to purify her body and soul for the wedding cermeony to be performed later.

This can be seen as a South Indian version of North indian haldi ceremony except the fact that it is performed at crack of dawn and there’s oil all over the bride’s head and not just haldipaste.

Now being a bride as you’ll be smeared in oil and turmeric and kumkum and then water also, there’s no point of wearing a heavy duty kanjeevaram saree for this event.

You can go for anything you wish to which wouldn’t cause disocmfort as you’ll be sitting for quite some time and will be drenched in water.

As this isn’t that ritual wherein you actually need to be particular about what you are wearing, you can go for lehenga, simple and sober saree or even like a bit embroidered crop top with a skirt.

Even a suit would work. As for the colors, choose light color as too bright of it in the morning might not be a good idea.


Mangala Snanam - South Indian WeddingCredits: | Get Bridal Your Bridal

As for the accessories, floral jewelry is the best as it will look good with your outfit for this particular ceremony and you also won’t fear ruining any of your other jewelry with turmeric marks.


Mangala Snanam - South Indian WeddingCredits: | Indian Bridal Sarees


2. Gauri Puja

Now this tradition is only performed at the bride’s end wherein after getting ready, she performs a small puja and offers prayers to Goddess Gauri who represents purity, austerity and virtue.

This is considered to be one amongst the most religious and prosperous rituals to seek blessings and divinity from the Goddess for a prosperous marriage life ahead.


Gauri Puja - South Indian WeddingCredits: | Indian Wedding Dresses


As for this event you’ll be completely ready, the outfit will of course comprise of Kanjeevaram saree with lot of jewelry like kamarbandh, necklace, earrings, lot on hair and wrist, even arms with heavy makeup.

But why opt for tradiitonal as always? There are a lot of ways by which you can step out of your comfort zone and be a badass bride while still staying rooted to the traditions.

You might be a traditional bride with traditional colors and hairstyle or a modern era bride who opts for a totally off beat color with varied hairstyle and vivid makeup choice.

Note: Though one can choose to wear a simpler saree for the puja and then change into a heavy, embroidered and lavish Kanjeevaram aka Pattu saree because more the options, better it is 😉

Credits: | Wedding wear Custom Made


So let’s see what all options you can have to choose from as per your type and style in a South Indian Wedding:

  • Minimalism is the key

South Indian Wedding - South Indian BrideIndian Wedding Dresses

If being OTT is not your style, then having a minimalistic look is also somehting which will make you feel equally decked up and beautiful on your wedding day.

This beautiful and chirpy bride chose to wear a peach colored saree with red border and minimal jewelry and a simple gajraon her hair as hair accessory for the main function.


  • Try a non-traditional color for an added oomph

Credits: | Indian Wedding Dresses for Brides

South Indian Wedding - South Indian Bride Credits: | Wedding Sarees

Why opt for traditional red only? Orange and green are the new reds in town. Many South indian brides haave opted to not go for red for the main ceremony. Instead opt for some other color like gree, orange, pink or even purple for the quintessential look in a South Indian Wedding.

Tip: Go for bold lips and heavy eyes with a color different than red because it will pop your face more.

As for the accessories, though more is less for South Indian brides but if you don’t wish to go for heavy jewelry for your hair, floral hair styles would work best. It would also make you feel fresh more.


  • Traditional and heavy embellished sleeves rock the wedding

Now as the South Indian weddings are all about Kanjeevaram sarees, a major part of a saree accounts the blouse. Nowadays, brides are going for contrast colored blouses, heavily embellished blouses and even quarter sleeved blouses to reflect the true traditional side of theirs.


Credits: | Indian Wedding Dresses For Brides


Cap sleeves, mesh sleeves and what not is not in trend for a bit of modern touch to the otherwise head-to-toe traditionalism.


South Indian Wedding - South Indian BrideCredits: | Indian Wedding Wear

This all-gold decked up bride in quarter sleeves is nonetheless than a dream of any South Indian bride.


Credits: | Indian Wedding Dresses For Brides

This bride in contrast colored blouse looks ravishing.


  • Diamond takes your heart away if not gold😉

Yes, though traditionally brides prefer to go with gold but if you aren’t someone who loves gold that much, then diamond is ot your rescue.

South Indian Wedding - South Indian Bride Credits: | Wedding Dresses


Tip: If you’re wearing a little simpler saree, then go all crazy with the blouse designs.

But if there’s a lot of embroidery, motifs and prints going on your saree, then a simpler blouse will extract the best out of you else it would feel as if you wore everything that you got your hands on!


  • Oddly long hair for a leaner look

With the hairstyle you can do a lot. Either go for braids with flowers in between or a long braid with a full blown South Indian bun and the braid having gajras and naga jadaiboth.


Credits: | Indian Ethnic Bridal Wear


  • Flower is all that matters

Indian Ethnic Wedding Dresses


This bride’s hair totally covered with mograsis seemingly uncanny and fascinating in itself to watch.

And because so much of flowers without any jewelry isn’t something which is normally seen, so it’s for sure not mainstream.


  • Highly modern and some carefree feel too

Now if you aren’t a completely tradition driven person then not only just the color of your saree but also the jewelry and the way you drape your saree can be a talking point as why not! Wanna have some sneek peak? See below!

South Indian Wedding - South Indian Bride Credits: | Indian Wedding Dress

This South Indian bride in a light pink saree draped in a subtle way with emerald jewelry, lesser bangles and simple matha pattiseems so ravishing.

Mesh sleeves with floral embroidery make it feel nothing less than a sober and soothing breath amidst the usual bright and loud colors of any usual South Indian wedding. So this for sure is uncommon. Truly modern in its purest possible form.

Are you a true rebellion but in a posiitve and healthy way? Then the below bride will surely seem stupendous to you and hence more relatable maybe.

South Indian Wedding - South Indian Bride and groomCredits: | Wedding Wear Brides & Groom

This dull golden and maroon border saree with small floral prints and a big prominent nose ring is what you need to set yourself apart from the crowd. Hair tied a bit loose into a bun is totally totally making this look IN.


  • Carry a dupatta for an edgier look

Now why is it edgy? Because it’s not usual and not seen commonly in a South Indian Wedding.

Credits: | Indian Wedding Dresses For Brides

Why only North Indian brides have a dupatta on their head? Even South Indian brides can do the same.

What makes it pretty and outstanding is the contrasting color because you might not get a dupatta matching totally with your saree.

So a different color to the saree is soemthing which brings the shine in the outfit.


3. Kashi Yatra – Last Chance of  Bachelorhood

Imagine Groom’s getting a last chance to escape the wedding ceremony! This idea is too cool to be true but it is 😉

In South Indian Wedding Kashi Yatra, plays an important role from groom’s end but what is this “Kashi Yatra”?

It is a trip to your Guru’s (teacher) adobe. Kashi Yatra is done by the groom to seek blessings, wisdom and power of the universe as he is stepping into this new life where he will be responsible for a new person and starting a family. In order to continue the traditions of his family.

Though this ceremony has been turned into a more of a pre wedding jitters 🙂 where groom thinks about his higher purpose in life by learning about Bhramacharya but Bride’s father and uncles convinces the groom to get married for their daughter.

Kashi Yatra - South Indian WeddingCredit: pradakshinaa

Groom needs to pack for this Yatra and which an umbrella, snacks for the way (usually coconuts and some rice), a walking stick and a spare Dhoti.

Kashi Yatra - South Indian Wedding

This is an amazing ritual in South Indian Wedding where both the families have a lot of fun and laughter. Be it a Kannada wedding, or a Tamilian wedding or Andhra Reddy Wedding ceremony ceremony, “Kashi Yatra” is a fun ritual that everyone enjoys.

4. Pada Puja

In South Indian wedding this ceremony is being performed from the bride’s family once the grrom reaches the wedding venue (or mandate in some cases). Brides family washes grooms feet with rose water, holy water, milk, sandalwood and kumkum. After washing the feet  are washed, it’s being wiped with flower petals to let dry. It is a respect that bride’s family offer to the groom.

Pada Pooja - South Indian Wedding

4. Malai Maatral

This is the fifth function infact after Kashi Yatra and Pada Puja wherein the bride and the groom exchange flower garlands and the ritual is repeated thrice with some playfulness in between eith both trying to evade from being the garland put around their necks. South Indian version of North India’s varmala.

Credits: | Indian Wedding Dresses


Indian Wedding Dresses For Brides


5. Kanyadanam

Kanya means girl and Danam means dakshina or a gift.

In this South Indian wedding ceremony, groom is viewed as a representative of lord vishnu. In order to tie the bride and groom in a life lasted bond, end of the bride’s saree is tied to the end of groom’s angavastram.

Kanayadaan - South Indian Wedding

Mother of the bride washed groom’s feet and applies kajal (kohl) to grooms eyes. Then Bride’s father gives the hand or his daughter and hands them a coconut on which bride’s mother pour holy water.


6. Saptapadi

In this South Indian wedding ceremony, Bride-Groom hold hands and circle aground the sacred fire seven times. Vedic mantra are chanted and vows are exchanged.

Depending on the varies cultures, this pooja can last unto 1 hour to 5 hours.

Phere - South Indian Wedding


7. South Indian Wedding Reception

Once all the ceremonies and rituals are finished, a grand reception is thrown usually from the bride’s side (but Indian livings these days in US and Canada, they share the expenses of reception).

Here amazing South Indian food is served which is usually vegetarian and to tell you the truth if you every attend a South Indian Wedding then the food there is out of the world.

South Indian Wedding Reception

Food along with some traditional music total encapsulates the whole environment. Usually no alcohol is served in the wedding unlike Punjabi Wedding.

South Indian Wedding Reception


Watch one such beautiful South Indian Wedding Ceremony:


South Indian Wedding – Bridal Wear Tips

But whatever might be the rituals, whatever might be the functions and howsoever you might follow all, what matters the most is that every bride has the right to look, feel and believe in their beauty on the most important day of their lives.

So in order to not feel anxious and be happy, follow some of the major tips below. Though these are the general ones but still must be kept in mind:

  1. Being a South Indian bride with only the Kanjeevaram saree being the main attire, plan it way beforehand. Choose one which will reflect your style and get blouse stitched as per the design and color of your saree. Ensure that it fits you well.
  2. As jewelry and other accessories form major part of the overall look of a South Indian bride, ensure that you have everything in place. Try not to go too overboard with the accessories as remember, the event will be day long and you might not be able to carry a lot the entire day.
  3. Plan your makeup way ahead and your hairstyle too to be in complete sync with your overall outfit as ntohing should look too much.

If you are one such bride or know one, then you must be knowing that how hard hitting it can be have the best outfit at your best day being tailor made and customised as per your needs, wants and desires.

But if you plan to go with one instead of buying it directly, then the team of stupendous designers and craftsmen at GetEthnic are someone whom you can trust to give the best to you.

A free sample file will be sent at your doorstep containing anything and everything about your outfit because at GetEthnic, the team believes in first sketching your outfit and then delivering it to you so that you know all tits and bits about what your outfit would look like as an end product.


Final Word – South Indian Wedding

A South Indian wedding is a lot traditional in all its aspects and yes, South India doesn’t just comprise of Kerala or Tamil Nadu. It is also about Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka and the weddings of all these 4 states are actaully different from each other. These aren’t same which many might assume to be.

If you every get an opportunity to attend a South Indian Wedding, never, I repeat never, miss it as it’s so much fun with amazing food!

Hope you like this article and do let us know more about your South Indian Wedding experiences.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *