Sikh Wedding in Nottingham | Jade & Amer

I must admit, I’m beginning to really enjoy photographing Asian weddings! It’s a breath of fresh air and there’s so much to capture (Oh and the drums sound amazing!)

Jade & Amer held their Sikh ceremony at the Ramgarhia Sabha Temple in Nottingham followed by a civil ceremony at Horsley lodge. The day started with both sides of the family joining in union with the exchange of garlands. They then signed the register before heading to the ceremony.

The ceremony was filled with laughter, prayers, music, colour, monetary gifts and a few tasks for the bride and groom. It was also great to capture a nice silhouette of Jade & Amer in the temple using a mirror and a bit of creative light.

Congratulations to Mr & Mrs Bhogal!

Information & advice from the newly-weds

How long have you been together/Any stories about how you met?:

Amer and I have been together for four years after meeting in August 2014. This was the time in which I had taken a promotion to Assistant Manager in the store he was working in. I had known the manager after previously working with her in my other store; once she knew I was coming to her new store, she used my Facebook profile photo to introduce me to the team – when she went to Amer her words were, “this is your new Assistant Manager, don’t try it on with her.” Amer says he didn’t understand why she said that, then he looked at the picture and he knew – he thought “challenge accepted.”

The first time Amer and I actually spoke apart from hellos were when our manager decided to quiz me on pharmacy, a week after being there, and with no pharmacy training yet. Amer stood behind her trying to mouth the answer while also doing some weird charades. Karen could see my eyes moving frantically as I tried to figure out what on earth he was saying. When I couldn’t I simply said, “I have no idea even with Amer trying to tell me the answer” – he wasn’t too impressed I just threw him under the bus (hahaha). I was then told I had to be the pharmacy manager so I was put on my training and soon enough was working side by side with Amer. He managed to calm down my fears and had me laughing while teaching me all he could to do with pharmacy, along with Sam, who (fun fact) ended up being a part of the Sikh wedding acting as my brother.

Soon enough, we realised that we had the same sense of humour, same likes and dislikes and our differences complimented each other. However, we were determined that it was nothing more and that we were just friends, even if we also admitted to each other that it could have been something more if the timing was different. The store team wouldn’t take that as an answer, neither would Karen, and if your boss tells you you’re meant to be together, then I guess you kind of have to. It took a lot, a lot of talking, a lot of hurdles and a lot of alcohol (thanks to our good friend Tav), but we finally got there, and ‘officially’ became a couple on November 28th 2015.


Any stories or tales from the proposal?

If there is one thing about Amer and I, it’s that even though we love each other, we’ll happily be each other’s best competition. In fact, the first time we said ‘I Love You’ was based on whoever lost at Mini Golf had to say it first (it was me, I was a sore loser so had to be calmed with food and cocktails before I could say it). It was August and Amer had just given me an amazing 21st birthday by taking me to London, for amazing food and to see Wicked which I had been dying to see. I decided that I had to make his 30th even better because I make a competition out of everything – and because I loved him, sure. So I decided I would surprise him with a trip to Iceland, something I knew he would love. I booked this in August, told everyone BUT him (he did the same to me for my birthday, I got told I was going to Skegness at one point), and decided I would tell him on our anniversary as leaving it until Christmas when his birthday was January was a bit cruel. We went for a lovely meal and then exchanged gifts. Being the master planner that I am, I decided to get silly gifts that would then be clues… An engraved compass for life’s adventures, a can of De-Icer and a Hot Wheels Mini Car (as Iceland is known as the land of fire and ice) and some green magnetic putty to represent the Northern lights.

His face was a picture as he unwrapped each one and his expectations of the gifts were definitely not what he thought. I then handed him a letter which explained it all. I watched as it all came together in his mind, and for once, he was speechless… and a little emotional even though he says he wasn’t.

Now Amer decided he couldn’t let this opportunity pass and since I had spent all that time planning, he had to steal my thunder. I had a feeling he was planning something, since I kept getting weird looks and hugs before we left and since Karen also has no calm when it comes to secrets. He planned to propose under the northern lights however, the first night we couldn’t see them due to the weather. Amer was all wrapped up in his Icelandic ready clothes and I took a lovely photo which, showed that he had a huge box in his chest pocket. I didn’t even notice. But my sister in law did and took the mick out of me and still does since I had completely missed it. The next night we went out, but once again, no northern lights. On the third and final night we got told that, unfortunately, the weather was too bad. Amer had to change his plan. He decided that he would propose in front of a statue we had passed which was supposed to be good luck; his determination to see this statue kind of tipped me off. Luckily it was near the restaurant I had booked our meal for. We arrive at the statue and he stands me in front and moves behind me. “Jade”, he said. “Amer” “Turn around” “Nope” “Please , my knee’s getting kinda wet”. That I couldn’t resist and as I turned around, there he was on one knee. I accepted of course, and then we had a debate on how fiancée was spelled for a woman – I was right. When we got too emotional, I sucker punched him in the stomach – lightly no matter what he says – to bring us back to earth.

We then celebrated in the restaurant, aptly name Apotek. The Icelandic for Pharmacy. I didn’t plan this, it was just an ironic, happy accident which had us laughing even more.

Reasons for choosing your venue?

I had entered a competition on Friday 13th July (13 is my lucky number as well as the date of both mine and Amer’s birthday, crazy I know) It was to win a wedding venue and I entered half-heartedly on a whim thinking it wouldn’t happen to me. It did!

Amer and I had worried for so long how we would afford and plan a wedding and this took all of our worries away. Plus, it wasn’t too far away and such a beautiful setting, we loved it. When we chose our date, we were thinking May/June time and potentially 2019 but most likely 2020. We were told a few dates but then the planner, after hearing our 13 story, said I’ll check to see if April 13th was free. It was and in 2019, which Amer immediately said yes too… which only left me 8 months to plan, and being as laid back as we were, i’m surprised we made it, but we did (lol)


Colour scheme/theme/style:

As Amer is Sikh we knew we needed to incorporate that into the wedding. We decided to have a Sikh ceremony in a temple in Nottingham where we would sign the register and then a more laid back ceremony at Horsley which we got our close friend to officiate… hilariously.

I chose a light, dusty pink colour after falling in love with it but also as it was a nice middle between traditional Indian red and traditional English white for weddings. It was also because pink is our nieces favourite colour, and my sister in law’s who is very persuasive. It was just meant to be!


Any special thoughts/memories from the day?

One thing that I always remember is how proud I was to have my dad walk me down the aisle, 3 times during the day in fact thanks to having two ceremonies! He has been such a rock to me and to have him by my side and to do such a wonderful speech, even including a Taylor Swift lyric from her song ‘The Best Day'(I’m a huge Swiftie), was so wonderful, words can’t describe.

Similarly, having my brother Richard, my Uncles Mat and Paul, and my close friends Tav and Sam who have been like brothers to me, play such a part in the Sikh ceremony, was a real culmination of love of family and friends and I couldn’t have asked for more. I was so lucky to have my Mum, my sister in law and Maid of Honour, Jen, my niece, Alea, who was ‘Baby of Honour’ and my amazing bridesmaids, Ruby, Rozeena, Esmee and Amy. They stood behind me and were my saviours every time I thought I was going to make an idiot of myself.

Amer and I both have a particular favourite moment which took place in the ‘white’ ceremony. Two of Amer’s ‘Best Men’ Sushil and Prem played a huge part. Sushil played us in on piano in a beautiful rendition of Knocking on Heavens Door; a song that means a lot to us due to being a favourite and appearing on numerous occasions in which we were together. Although it’s not particularly romantic in lyrics, the beautiful piano version Sushil did, was. We were then ‘married’ again by Prem, who did such an amazing job. Even though nervous, his words were beautiful and hilarious and better than we ever could have imagined anyone else doing. It was even more wonderful to have someone marry is who had been part of our relationship from the beginning.

I have to also give a shout out to the ‘Car Boot Bar’ that Amer and his Best Men pulled together – I’ve never seen so many men gathered round a car and never seen our dads have so much fun.

Finally, the dance floor held brilliant and the funniest moments of the night. Firstly, our first dance to Taylor Swift’s ‘Call it What You Want’ – Like the Swiftie I am, I sang it to Amer the whole way through and we laughed and smiled the whole dance. I will say that the song and the whole of the album it came from had huge significance to Amer and I as the lyrics speak to much to our relationship in so many ways. It also helped that Amer is a Swiftie too now! The boys dancing was spectacular, so much so that Sam ripped his trousers on the whole on the seam from crotch and to the top of his bum. Amer dancing with my niece and my cousins Esmee and Ella was wonderful and I don’t think two kids have ever been more tired.


Any advice for couples planning a wedding?

Don’t take it too seriously. Honestly, while it is a huge day, it’s about you two first and foremost. Relationships aren’t perfect, they’re full of trials and tribulations as well as happiness and love, silly moments and laughing till you’re crying.

This is only one day out of all of that and you shouldn’t spend the lead up to it and the day stressing over small details. Have fun with it! We were very laid back when it came to planning, and while sometimes, yes it did help to have a kick up the bum occasionally (thanks Jen and Amy) – it made the experience so much better and now we can look back on it all with fondness. Also, BOTH of you need to take part and plan it together after all it is about you BOTH and having both inputs, views and tweaks makes it even better.

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