my world #40: gaye holud

31 Aug

Gaye Holud (or literal meaning using tumeric mask on body) or tumeric ceremony is part of the Bengali wedding ceremony. The gaye holud is the Bengali version of a bridal shower/bachelor’s party.  Both the bride and groom have a gaye holud.  The relatives of each family can attend the other’s gaye holud except for the bride and the groom.

The bride’s gaye holud is the one I am showing you.  This is the reason why we went to NY last April, to be part of the wedding.

The bride sits on  a dais in front of or at the end of the room.  Henna is used to decorate her hands and feet with wonderful elaborate  designs.  She usually wears orange or red sari and is decked in flowers and jewelry.  Sweets and fruits are prepared and are placed in the dais with the bride.

One by one guests come up front to apply tumeric paste to the bride’s face.  This is said to soften the skin and give the skin a wonderful glow (to be more beautiful for her wedding).  Also, the bride is fed by the guests sweets and fruits after applying the paste. Make sure to feed the bride a small piece of fruit or sweets, as depending on the number of  her guests she will be stuffed halfway thru her guest list.

There is a feast involved.  While the ceremony is going on, snacks are served to the rest of the guests.  When everyone had gone upfront and smeared the bride’s face and all the photos have been snapped, then the feast begins.

I must say that this is a wonderful experience for me.  I did not realize that there was a gaye holud. I did come for the wedding.   What an exotic ceremony it is.

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Posted by on August 31, 2009 in My World


41 responses to “my world #40: gaye holud

  1. barrycade

    August 31, 2009 at 11:08 am

    wow. i’d like to witness this kind of ceremony one day. or maybe i should just really start planning for a trip to india! 😀

    • ewok1993

      August 31, 2009 at 5:24 pm

      i think this is only in the bengal part of india, but this is practiced all over bangladesh. this was in new york.

  2. backpacking philippines

    August 31, 2009 at 11:50 am

    indians are colorful and willingful subjects…happy people like pinoys

  3. Carver

    August 31, 2009 at 6:08 pm

    What an interesting ceremony and you got some great shots. That’s interesting to me that tumeric is good for the skin in this context. I am a melanoma patient and there have been clinical trials with tumeric which have shown that it can actually be beneficial in fighting melanoma (not just on the skin but also interal metastatic tumors). In that case tumeric is given in high dose pill form. So tumeric has a lot of benefits besides being good in food.

  4. Postcards from Wildwood

    August 31, 2009 at 7:28 pm

    Beautiful and beautifully coloured shots. The bride looks gorgeous. I hope the rest of the wedding was as fascinating and enjoyable for you.

  5. Sylvia Kirkwood

    August 31, 2009 at 7:31 pm

    How delightful! And your photos are so beautiful, so colorful! What an interesting post, loved all the information! Also very interesting the info about tumeric! That’s good to know!

    Have a great week!


  6. maryt/theteach

    August 31, 2009 at 7:42 pm

    ewok, thank you very much for sharing your world with me. So colorful, so beautiful! 🙂

  7. Janie of Utah

    August 31, 2009 at 9:39 pm

    That’s a fascinating tradition. It was fun to see the bright clothing and learn how this is celebrated.

  8. Guy D

    August 31, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    What a fantastic culture, great shots.

    Have a great week
    Regina In Pictures

  9. Martha

    August 31, 2009 at 9:48 pm

    Very interesting and such beautiful saris, not just the bride. I think this is such a beautiful for of dress and wonderful way for women to express themselves though it would be to confining for me, I am too active.

    • ewok1993

      September 1, 2009 at 12:41 am

      Same here. I do like to wear one as long as I don’t have to move at all 🙂

  10. Luiz Ramos

    August 31, 2009 at 9:59 pm

    Beautiful Indian tradition.
    Beautiful your World.

  11. Bonnie Bonsai

    August 31, 2009 at 11:27 pm

    Very interesting info about Bengali pre-nuptial tradition. So colourful!

  12. Fishing Guy

    August 31, 2009 at 11:28 pm

    Ewok: What a nice ceremony of love between two people.

  13. babooshka

    August 31, 2009 at 11:34 pm

    Fascinating images and so colourful.

  14. mountain.mama

    August 31, 2009 at 11:52 pm

    Yes, I love the pictures and the colors. It’s so much more interesting than “the bride wore white!”

    • ewok1993

      September 1, 2009 at 12:41 am

      Oh yes, the bride wears red.

  15. SandyCarlson

    September 1, 2009 at 12:37 am

    Wonderful photo. So much color and feeling.

  16. Gemma

    September 1, 2009 at 12:41 am

    Love the colours of the saris in these photos! And the last photo really highlights just how beautiful turmeric can be on the face! Great post!

  17. Pam

    September 1, 2009 at 12:56 am

    Its always interesting to learn about other cultures, thanks for sharing your wonderful photos of this beautiful ceremony.

  18. Snap

    September 1, 2009 at 2:45 am

    This was a wonderful post. I learned a lot. Everything so colorful and the bride is beautiful.

  19. Elaine Ling

    September 1, 2009 at 3:02 am

    Interesting post on the ceremony.
    I wonder if the turmeric is easy to wash off!

  20. James

    September 1, 2009 at 3:04 am

    Very interesting. It seems like such a nice and traditional thing to do. Much better than getting wasted and going to a strip club like many young people in this country tend to do.

  21. Sally in WA

    September 1, 2009 at 3:07 am

    Such a wonderful tradition to learn about. And she was a beautiful bride.

  22. Tabib

    September 1, 2009 at 3:47 am

    Unique tradition. Thanks for sharing the story and great pics.

  23. magiceye

    September 1, 2009 at 5:11 am

    oh yes this is so much fun!

  24. Arija

    September 1, 2009 at 5:28 am

    A very beautiful, informative and happy post. It is always good to learn of others customs and ceremonies and on top of that, the bride is stunningly beautiful. I wish her and her new husband all the happiness this world can offer.

  25. Reader Wil

    September 1, 2009 at 7:32 am

    Beautiful and very colourful, Ewok! The bride is gorgeous and I hope happy. Are couples allowed to choose their own partners or are marriages arranged by the parents? Your photos are stunning! Thanks for sharing!

  26. luna miranda

    September 1, 2009 at 9:18 am

    i’m sure it was a great experience for you. i’ve always wanted to witness ceremonies and rituals different from ours. thanks for sharing!

  27. Rajesh

    September 1, 2009 at 10:28 am

    Very beautiful. Yo u have captured the emotions very nicely.

  28. Regina

    September 1, 2009 at 10:58 am

    These are wonderful! Thank for sharing.
    Great post!

  29. autumnbelle

    September 1, 2009 at 3:54 pm

    This is really exotic. The bride looks ravishing after all this pampering and fun treatment. Must be an extremely enjoyable and memorable occassion.

  30. Barb

    September 1, 2009 at 4:55 pm

    I enjoyed your post very much, ewok! The pictorial and your explanation are so interesting. The bride was very beautiful!

  31. Larry D

    September 2, 2009 at 2:25 am

    Very cool!

  32. Baruch

    September 2, 2009 at 7:32 am

    Very colourful photos and a very beautiful bride. Thanks for sharing a bit about the culture

  33. J

    September 2, 2009 at 9:15 am

    She looks so happy – it must’ve been a great day. Obviously this is the week to post about weddings!

  34. Indrani

    September 2, 2009 at 9:36 am

    Looks like shot in India. Great shots!

  35. Euroangel

    September 2, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    This is a very wonderful photo..I would love to visit India in the future! tc!

  36. bw

    September 9, 2009 at 12:07 am

    amazing. I learned something today 🙂 The divergence of our cultures is very interesting.


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