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Thursday, October 24, 2013

Nadeera's wedding

Wedding Reception date: 19th October 2013

Nadeera & Hilmi, beautiful couple
A proper Malay wedding is a community project done in the "gotong-royong" (do it together) spirit of the Malays. A lot of work has to be done before the grand feast such as setting up temporary camps, kitchen shed, nuptial chamber, bunga telur, the dais, decorations etc. It was similar to Nadeera's case. Her family and close relatives works hard to prepare her big day in a grand and lavish style.


Young usherer in 2 tones color combination attire, Malay traditional costume "Baju Melayu" 

Nadeera is an office colleague, an IJM scholar, currently attached in Anne's department. She's graduated a year ago and now working under IJM per scholarship contract and enrolled into IJM's Young Talent Programme. Nadeera is sweet, pretty, intelligent and very humble girl. She wedded her long time boyfriend, 11 years together (big WOW) on Friday, 18th October 2013. The solemnization was successfully held at her family house in Bangi.

The Bride received the Groom's delegation and walked to the isle

Traditionally, the first stage is 3 nights before the wedding in which only families participate discussing the checklist and final preparation. The next night, come other relatives, close friends and neighbours for the second stage where the solemnization takes place and the couple wed according to Muslim's law by the Kadi (an imam authorised to perform the wedding). The final stage was on the wedding day itself, rather wedding reception where all the invited guests takes part. I roughly estimate that there were more than a thousand people were invited during the grand ceremony on the 19th. 

2nd Pelamin @ isle for reception day

Being devoted Muslims, Malays of course, solemnize their marriages according to the Islamic laws. A Kadi and two witnesses of the bride inspect the expenses, dowry and gifts from the groom. The Kadi also gives a sermont on marital responsibilities before shaking the groom's hand and utters: "Aku nikahkan dikau (bride's name to be mentioned) dengan mas kahwin (the amount according to the state law).. tunai". To which the groom is expected to respond: "Aku terima nikahnya...( repeats after the Kadi)". The witnesses have to be satisfied that the groom said it loud and clear. Otherwise, the groom has to repeat his line. (I can imagine how nervous a groom can be under such circumstances).

Wedding gifts to the bride decorated in fresh flowers

This is followed by a prayer, then groom puts a ring on his bride's finger and they shake hands (not the western style) but the Malay style, bersalaman (hold hand, the bride kiss the groom's hand and the groom's kiss the bride's forehead). Now, they are officially husband and wife. However, they are still spending the nights separately in different houses as they have to wait until the marriage ceremony, called "hari bersanding".The marriage ceremony is actually held twice, first at the bride's residence then the groom's. The former occasion is grander because this is where the new couple sits together on a dais.

The 1st Pelamin @ Isle for solemnization. Isk, me & Ane were feeling pretty too, hence, the photo shot


Usually, the groom arrives with his throng beating kompang drums and parading bunga manggar. He is welcomed by a shower of beras kunyit (as in Hindu's style) and a performance of Malay martial art "Silat". The groom does not forget his main intention, i.e. to claim his bride. However, he has to bargain with with the ladies of the house to let her go. After paying a price , the groom is allowed to sit on the dais (pelamin) with his bride. At the end of the feast, the couples greet the elders with respectful shake hands, involving both of their parents, relatives and guests. Instead of cakes, the guests to a Malay wedding receive bunga telur.

Did you shed a tears Nad?

It was slightly different for Nad's case. As Malay's inheritance and customs follows a lot of Hinduism and Javanese, modern Malays chose to adapt the Islamic ways by having Marhabban and salawat instead. There is also a western style in between with the Candy Corner and Guest Corner, which was not practiced those days.

Candy Corner
Guest Corner

Coincidentally Iskmahani (our office mate) happened to arrive at the same time with us, so, after we finished with the foods, desserts and ice-cream, we went inside the house to see the place where the solemnization took place a night before. It was beautiful as beautiful as the couple. I cant help it but dreaming some of the things for my daughter.

Argh.. The 2 of us had a feeling of being pretty for a day
Entrance spot before heading back, last photo with the ladies
Fresh flower bouquet at the entrance Tent

We pray an eternal happiness to Nadeera and her husband, Mr H. May they have a wonderful journey together till death do them apart. Amen.
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