Real New England Weddings: Anita Mohandas & Keith Drake
Photos by Kate McElwee Photography
Keith Drake and Anita Mohandas are from the same town in New Hampshire, but they didn’t actually meet until he asked her out the old-fashioned way: via AOL Instant Messenger. “We had friends in common, but this was out of the blue,” Anita remembers. Keith, as it turns out, had pestered a mutual pal for her screen name. Even so, Anita “thought he was pretty cute.” So she took him up on his request, which resulted in an adorably awkward first date. “She was clearly a lot of fun, and we hit it off,” Keith says.
After six years, the couple decided to move in together, settling on a place in the Back Bay. Move-in day is always stressful, but it was even more so for Keith, who had picked the date to propose. Once they were finished unpacking, Anita and Keith went out for pizza, returning home to find flowers scattered all around the apartment (thanks to a friend of Keith’s). That was when Keith popped the question.
Anita knew she wanted their wedding to honor her Indian heritage, and the Taj, with its gorgeous rooftop vistas and traditional Indian food, was the ideal place to do it. Keith was just as excited about the cultural celebration. “We had been watching some Bollywood movies, and he thought, Oh my God, for our first dance we should do a Bollywood dance,” she says. After a few lessons with a friend, the pair had the moves down. “I am not exactly a performer, but everyone was clearly excited,” Anita says. “It set the tone well for what was to come.”
Left: Keith’s magenta ceremony slippers were purchased at Chhabra Bridal in Boston. Right: Anita’s maid of honor worked with her florist, Misty Florez of Nectar, to design a bridal bouquet of pink peonies and garden roses (Anita’s favorite blooms).
A henna artist inked the bridal party the night before the wedding.
During the Hindu ceremony, the couple donned garlands called jaimala, which signify two souls becoming one.
The bridesmaids’ saris and blouses were purchased in India. The white sari with a gold border is traditional in Kerala, where Anita’s family is from.
The groomsmen’s attire came from Brooks Brothers. The red accents were chosen to match the bride’s red reception dress.
Keith and Anita kicked off the reception with a choreographed Bollywood dance routine.
Left: The hotel baked the wedding cake, a strawberry shortcake with buttercream frosting (the groom’s choice). Right: Mercury-glass vases filled with lush red and pink flowers made for romantic table centerpieces.
Reception Dress: Monique Lhuillier, L’élite Bridal Boutique
Bridesmaid Dresses: Amsale, L’élite Bridal Boutique
Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Menswear: Brooks Brothers
Ceremony Flowers: Shobha Shastry, Alankar
Reception Flowers: Misty Florez, Nectar
Caterer: Taj Boston
Music: DJ Yogz, Boston Sound and Light Company
Want more? Check out all of our Real New England Weddings for this season.