Selecting a mehandi design for yourself
Selecting a mehandi design for yourself sounds very easy, but is actually quite a complicated affair once you get to it. You can of course, choose random designs from a catalogue; in most cases, people regret doing this later on. Or you can give it some more thought before you actually get to it and choose something that you will be happy with in the long run.
When selecting a mehandi design, there are several factors to consider before:
- Purpose – Are you the bride or the bridesmaid? Are you simply a guest at the wedding or getting the mehandi for some other occasion in your home? Once you know the purpose, you can automatically narrow down on a few choices, especially on the ‘scale’ of the design, intricate or simple.
- Outfit – Think of the mehandi as an accessory or a style statement; something that adds on to what you are already wearing. So if you have a very heavy outfit, you might want to tone down the mehandi to get more focus on the outfit itself. Or you can go simple with the clothes and elaborate with the mehandi. Designs and the work on your outfit too work as an inspiration for a mehandi design on your hand; some people match the mehandi designs to the motifs and embroidery on their outfit.
- Convenience – As a bride, you can probably afford 2-3 hours of staying put while the mehandi is applied to you and another 3-4 hours of drying. However, there are others who don’t want to spend so many hours of their life doing this; for them, simple mehandi designs are the best that are easy to make and don’t take too much time to dry either. The simpler the design, the lesser the time to make it.
- Post-Event Look – It may seem cool to get an elaborate mehandi design on your best friend’s wedding to match with your traditional outfit, but you don’t want to regret the decision when you have to wear your work outfit again after the event and the mehandi simply stands out making you feel awkward with your look. Some professions and jobs don’t allow for mehandi in the first place, while others are very much appearance based. In such cases, you may want to opt for lighter mehandis that fade out quickly or simpler designs that don’t look too flashy or mismatched with your other casual outfits.
Once you have these basics covered for the selection of your mehandi design, you need to get down to the actual ‘design’ aspect of it. It all depends on taste, mostly, but there are some who also opt for theme-based designs. Here are some ideas to help you on what kind of mehandi design suits you best.
- Arabic – Particularly famous for a floral feel with a shaded look on the mehandi designs, these are favorites with brides. They are quite stunning to look at and match very well with all kinds of traditional outfits. You can get an interesting creeping tail look with a serpentine effect – like a creeper going around your wrist and reappearing on your arm. Arabic designs can be made as intricate or minimalistic as you want, depending on your tastes and preferences.
- The Royal Look – Rajasthani, Marwari and Gujarati designs are particularly famous for their detailed and intricate work. These make the bride feel like a princess or a queen, and it takes hours to finish off the design on one hand or one leg because of the details involved. It’s almost like doing a high level of intricate embroidery work that has endless beautiful details. Some people choose for the “gloved” effect on the hand where the mehandi designs wraps the arm till the elbows on the hands and till the calves on the legs.
- Minimalistic and Modern – This is the kind of mehandi that a lot of new-age brides prefer. Chic and limited to only one statement creeper like design on the palm and the back of it, this minimalistic style often has geometric inspirations. You can of course, make the details as intricate as you want within the minimalistic framework of the design on the arm and the leg.
- Experimental Mehandi – This is a space that is completely dependent on your imagination. While some people get their spouse’s name designed with mehandi on their palm, others get inspiration from favorite quotes, symbols, characters etc. This is more like creating a stylish tattoo, only with mehandi instead of ink on your skin.
Needless to say, when you spend so much time and effort into selecting and executing a great mehandi design, you want it to stay for long as well. While some people make a mix of lemon juice with sugar and apply it on the mehandi frequently before letting it dry for 3 hours and then scrubbing it off, others vouch for rubbing freshly removed mehandi hands and legs with oil from pickles.
With time, of course, the mehandi will fade out. But if you are keen on prolonging the time period for which it stays, then you can simply avoid doing dishes and washing clothes for sometime. Any activity that brings the mehandi hands in direct contact with soap and water will start the fading effect. So avoid those activities, and the mehandi design will stay for a little longer than average.