This took me a long time for me to write. Really sorry for keeping you guys waiting.. Reason being, because of my crazy schedule mostly... and partly because my wedding subject kinda involved more details and a lot more pictures to share here! So after looking at the length of the details of my wedding, I decided to split them into few parts. So here's the hantaran part first.
I don't know about you, but I think the exchanging hantarans are one of the most interesting part in a Malay wedding, that no bride should miss! I mean, everyone loves getting gifts right? At least I do! hehe. I love getting, anddddd giving them! (Remember this Santa Claus post? haha :p) So naturally buying the hantaran gifts for him has been such an exciting experience for me, being a shopaholic that I am! :p
Okay..actually it was more like buying all gifts for myself! - Cuz I get to decide everything! haha. Well...actually I wanted to sort of "synchronize" our gifts. You know like same type or product or same brand or something like that to add in the cheesiness some more, cuz it's a wedding! haha. xD
So my then-fiance-now-husband, gave me the privilege to choose whatever that I want for his trays from his side, and whatever I want to give him for my trays, because he's cool like that. ^__^
Anyways.... so one month before the wedding, we went to Pavilion and Starhill malls to have a shopping spree trip in one day, to check off our hantaran list, and bought the for him and for her gifts together. Gosh...it was such fun times for me!
For my non Malay/non Malaysian readers, hantarans are actually some tray of gifts from the groom in an odd number, which will be exchanged during the matrimonial ceremony. The gifts in the hantaran list are not fixed, although there are certain must-have items, like the daun sirih (betel leaves) and bunga rampai, a sweet-smelling mixture of daun pandan (screwpine leaves) that have been shredded thinly, mixed with some rose water and sprinkled with some jasmine flowers. This is like the signification of the Malay hantaran tradition, which until today...I still don't quite get it why do we have to have this in our hantaran list! haha. I mean I could just replace the sweet-smelling tray with some bottles of toiletries or perfumes, right? You know...something practical and useful! hehe ;p
Anyway, the bride side will give back at least 2 more of the gifts/trays than the groom's side. So the number of trays could be from as little as 5-3, or 7-5, or 9-7, or 11-9, or 13-11 and more! The gifts are always in odd numbers, but there are no minimum or maximum total of gifts/trays that should be given from both parties. It's really entirely up to the couple/family to give how many and what are the choices of the gifts to be given. The hantaran will be decorated with ribbons, pearls, flowers and whatnot, following a colour theme of the respective families’ choice.
The exchanging hantaran is not an obligatory custom, but it's our Malay wedding tradition, which I personally find it as one of the interesting parts in the ceremony! :)
The Malays basically exchange the wedding gifts during the ceremony to foster good relations between the two bridal families.
Last time, our Engagement Hantaran were 16 trays altogether; having 9 trays from my side, and 7 trays from his side. Hence for the wedding, we decided to add another 4 more trays to that number, being 13 trays from me, and 11 + 1 trays from him. That plus one, would be the Mas Kahwin, the dowry (or mahr in Arabic) that is a must in a Muslim wedding, which is an amount that every groom must give to his bride, without which, the wedding would not be valid. So altogether, there were 25 trays of gifts for the bride and groom! So you can imagine how excited we were on that night. Well...at least my husband did! haha
The dowry is something that a groom is obliged to give to his wife on their wedding day, usually, but not always, in monetary form. Although I wanted mine to be in a form of gold bars, but my dad said money would be easier for him to say the akad. So we stick with money. Bear in mind that mahr is not to be mistaken with hantaran. The dowry or mahr is compulsory but hantaran is not.
His Dulang Boys a.k.a the tray bearers, carrying 11 trays of the wedding gifts for me
My Dulang Girls, carrying 13 trays of the wedding gifts for him
Besides the dress and the pelamin (wedding dais), I think a bride should consider having a hantaran deco that is nicely done by the professional as well. Like the elderly says, they're the penyeri majlis! And I completely agree! So I would highly recommend for any brides-to-be, to spend your money a little, for the hantaran deco as they make such perfect little details that'll complement your wedding atmosphere altogether! With so much care and meticulous details going into the presentation of the hantaran, it’s no wonder that people these days often take photos of the hantaran whenever they go to a wedding. We just love seeing anything that looks pretty to our eyes, no?
Anyways, here are our wedding hantarans..
The hantaran from him to me.
Using pink and cream floral colors, The decorator chose roses, peonies, carnations and baby breath flowers for his tray to complement his Dulang Boys outfits and my wedding theme colors that night, which were dusty pink and off-white. This hantaran deco was from Adi Wedding Deco. They displayed each of the gifts on a mirrored tray, presenting them on a champagne colored square padded cushions, on some boxy mirrors! Lovely, yes?
And this were the hantarans from me to him.
This hantaran deco was made by Ari Wedding Couture. They made my beautiful Engagement Hantaran deco in July, so undoubtedly I decided to have them as one of the vendors for my big day as well...and I'm so glad I did! These hantarans were SO beautiful and so exquisite! Look at that happy colors! So enchanting!
As for the flowers, they used green lilies, blue hydrangeas, and pink roses, peonies and carnations. So instead of putting them on a tray, they used the boxy mirrors as the "tray", to display the hantaran and then used a beige colored squared stool for each of the hantaran as their platform! How creative! - I love the fact that the beige/brown striped stool matched with the hall's carpet and curtains! Happy bride! ^__^
And my God...they were SO heavy, my Dulang Girls complained! hahaha. Sorry girls, that's what bride's maids are for! :p
Flowers, pearls and mirrors. Oh, so pretty!
Now enough talking, let's enjoy these hantaran deco from these two awesome vendors shall we?
The hantaran from him to me by Adi Wedding Deco:
1) Tepak Sirih and Bunga Rampai
2) Marquise cut diamond ring from Prince Jewelry
3) The hantaran money
4) Praying attire or telekung as we called it
5) Some chocolates from Chocolate Chapters.
Yes, these are chocolates! Everything that you see here is edible! From that gambir, kapur to the kacip/gunting to the daun sirih and flowers! Pretty right?
Since I posted this on my Instagram last time, many of you have asked me about this chocolate. Well here's the info: We ordered this from the Chocolate Chapters outlet in Bangsar. You can view my Instagram to see a video of me destroying/eating it! hehe. They can custom made your order to a Malay tanjak, Masjid Putrajaya, Masjid Shah Alam, and many more! Price vary according to the design. Starting at RM 500 and above. I don't have the contact number, but you may find them at Bangsar Shopping Centre.
This would make a very pretty set of hantaran. Not to mention, more practical! hehe. You may consider substituting this with the Tepak Sirih tray, which in my opinion is kinda...err pointless tradition by our ancestors because we don't really use daun sirih in our life these days, do we? haha. But we do eat chocolates, right?! LOL. Oh well..the mom still wanted the tepak sirih to be in the hantaran list because she said it just doesn't make sense to omit the tepak sirih because sirih is the Malay's culture and so is the hantaran. So without the sirih, "it wouldn't be a hantaran". I guess a tradition is still a tradition then...and I'm just being a Generation Y. hehe.
So anyways, they made the chocolate in bronze color instead of brown, which made so many people thought that they were the real tepak sirih and wondered why do I have two tepak sirihs in my hantaran trays! hehe
The chocolate don't just look good, they taste great too! Go order it today!
6) Bath & Home fragrance set from Diptyque.
7) Sony video camera
8) Formula One white ceramic with diamonds watch from Tag Heuer
9) Body & Fragrance set from Annick Goutal
10) White lambskin Lady Dior handbag
11) Cheetah printed peep-toe 7 inch heels from Giuseppe Zanotti
I loveeee the back part of the shoe! Fabulous!
The hantaran from me to him by Ari Wedding Couture:
1) Tepak Sirih with Bunga Rampai
2) Bvlgari wedding band
4) Sejadah/praying mat
5) 3-tier lace cake from Cake In Cups
6) Bath & Home fragrance set from Diptyque
7) Sony camera
8) Black rubber strap AquaRacer Chronograph watch from Tag Heuer
9) Body & Fragrance set from Creed
10) Dunhill & Canali shirts
11) Canali reversible belt and a Dunhill leather wallet
12) Tumi work bag in olive brown
13) Hugo Boss classic brogue leather shoes in dark brown
Anyway, the hantaran deco may not be as expensive as the pelamin deco - You know how pelamin these days can easily cost you like RM 10k and above right? Crazy world we're living in! tskk. Fortunately, you can get the hantaran deco from as low as RM 100 per tray! Some people opted to use the artificial flowers for the hantaran deco to minimize the cost, but I think using fresh florals would really make your hantaran deco looking more attractive!
For those who are interested in hiring Ari Wedding Couture, they charged mine for an elaborate/full fresh floral hantaran at RM 250 per tray, excluding the platform charges and the transportation fees though. You may contact Mr. Ari at 017 223 0998. Or if you like the simpler version like the hantaran from my husband's side, you may call Mr. Adi from Adi Wedding Deco at 016 209 4784. Last time they charged my husband for the deco only RM 150 per tray! Excluding transportation & platform fees that is.
Good luck in planning your wedding girls! Have fun! :)