A gift makes the receiver happy and cherish those fond moments. No wonder gifting has become an essential part of our important occasions — from birthdays and weddings to naming ceremonies and anniversaries. But while gifting, it is very important to know what is acceptable and what is not, what is trending and most importantly, what people will like.
When it comes to weddings, gifting is no longer limited to the bride, groom and their immediate relatives today but is extended to the guests as well. Talking to Samrat Zaveri, MD of Shazé, who will be participating in the Vogue Wedding Show 2018 (August 3-5) at Taj Palace, New Delhi, we find out how shagun (gifts given in marriage) has had a makeover. Excerpts:
When it comes to weddings, the gifting pattern has changed drastically over the years. How do you look at the trend?
The world has now moved from gifting in-laws only to wedding favours for the guest too. What was considered exclusive, only for the immediate family members, has now turned into a trend — where all invitees are presented with a gift. With every moment documented on social media, it’s become more important than ever to be the talk of the town — by means of either the innovative wedding invite or wearing designer garments or the giveaways. Since every social event is forgotten in seconds due to constant circulation/updates through social media, it only makes sense to invest in thoughtful gifting that people would remember you by.
Weddings will always be a big milestone for most people, especially in India. We centre our entire lives around this big day, hence it is no surprise that gifting plays a vital role in it, and with time it has evolved while still staying true to its essence. Earlier gifts were mainly given by the bride’s family to the groom’s family, but now in the age of millennial personalisation, people invest in the tiniest of details. Shaguns don’t just involve a piece of jewellery and some sweets but now they involve specially curated gift hampers for the bride and the groom. It does not stop there, it carries on to the extended family, friends and business associates as well.
Yes, weddings have become a memorable event not only for the bride and groom but for the guests who attend them as well.
Rather, I would say that weddings in India have always been more guest-centric. As much as the bride, the groom and their families want it to be a memorable event for themselves, it does end up being more focused on what the guests will say. Hence, in order to win over the hearts of the guests, special performances by celebrities, larger-than-life decor, gob-smacking, specially curated menus by renowned chefs and one-of-a- kind venues are selected.
As a company that customises gifts as per the occasion, what are the ongoing trends in wedding gifts?
Metallic finish products in rose-gold, sparkling silver or captivating copper are trending wedding gifts as of now. In addition to these, tea light candle holders, themed wedding invites and wedding stationery are popular items used for gifting. There is also room to experiment with decanters with fancy silver heads.
Mixing these options with edibles like flavoured jam/honey, coffee/teas from various part of the world is the new trend. In the progressive fast-paced millennial world that we live in, attention is given to the smallest of details. Be it a traditional or contemporary wedding, people are always looking at personalised wedding favours.
In return gifts at weddings, what is in vogue?
Unconventional and yet very relevant gifts are the norm of the day. It could be an assortment of the finest quality jams or maybe a special collection of evening clutches designed by a celebrity designer — sky is the limit. We have more or less done away with the standard ladoo box and replaced them with Laduree macaroons served in a traditional tray. Standard ladoos are now replaced by one of a kind brownie ladoos. It’s not about what you give, it’s about where the gift is from that makes it highly exclusive.
What are the gifting essentials which should be on every person’s list at a wedding?
The essentials of a gift vary from wedding to wedding and custom to custom. However, just like the West, where their traditions dictate that there should be ‘something new, something old and something borrowed’ present, in India we always need ‘something sweet, something salted and something extremely valuable’ on our big day, along with a good omen and brilliant larger-than-life packaging, all wrapped with the wedding card and also personalised with the couple’s personal invitation to the event. Gifting needs might have evolved, but no matter what we do, we still have not forgotten our roots. We have found ways to bring them back. Hence a good mix of traditional products mixed with the most modern form of display makes for a good gift.
What makes gifts from your store different? What is the vision of Shazé?
Inspired by the need to redefine lifestyle brands, Shazé began its journey with exquisite silverware products that combined fashion with self-expression. Distinction through exclusivity remained at the heart of Shazé’s existence as we produced designs that served the most discerning clients and helped define that perfect urban high-street lifestyle. Shazé is all about self-expression, and that is exactly what our products equip the clients with, a chance to express better through inimitable and unique design offerings. With stores across India, as well as online presence, Shazé offers its customers an urbane lifestyle with products such as jewellery, accessories and décor.