Monday, April 7, 2014


E for Envelopes for Shagun

Shagun Envelopes are a popular sight  for a Punjabi Wedding. What they are - Well plain and simple gift in cash covered up in nicely decorated envelopes to be handed over at various occasions during the wedding to the bride or the groom or to both and sometimes to the relatives of the bride and groom as well.

In my brother's wedding I realized , that envelope handling is a department in itself and it needs experts to manage it. Since an Indian wedding is a series of big and small customs, a lot of "give and take" of envelope happens over the two day affair. The amount inside the envelope is not of much consequence, but what is important is that if you are a relative you must carry a good number of envelopes with you, which you can keep doling as and when the Pundit instructs.

Similarly,  as a host also, you need to give these shagun envelopes at various occasions, some of which I told you about in my post on door stopper. So some tips for the wedding planner from my side would be:

1. Take atleast 4-5 colour or pattern envelopes
2. Keep different denominations in different colours. You can keep denominations ranging from Rs 50 to ????  Well, actually there is no maximum limit, you can draw the line wherever you want. But mostly a custom like Juta Churai (i will talk about this when we come to J) wins by good margins when it comes to the booty in the envelope.
3. It would be good to make a list of customs, number of people who will be at the receiving end for these customs and also the amount you would want to give away as shagun. (token of gratitude or blessing)
4. Also please do keep a good number of plain unmarked envelopes. This is for a surprise which the Pundit ji (Hindu Priest) will give you at the last minute, and also for those unorganised and unprepared guests who will not be carrying their envelopes and would in turn request you to give them one so that they can put in their blessings in form of cash and give it to the bride or the groom.

What I have come to understand, this envelope business is more seen in a North Indian wedding. Personally I am not very comfortable with it as it becomes an unwanted burden on both the side, and here I am not talking about the money involved, but the hassle of logistics and planning involved around it as well.

Star of day 5 - Have a look at an amazing artpiece by Kathy Combs. She is in love with Zentangles and her passion shows in her drawings,


  1. Handling envelops is a complete department..........I completely agree.
    Quality and quantity of envelops decides the status of the people....:)

  2. Ho thats interesting! The only envelopes that gets passe din a Nair(the community I belong to) is during enegagemnet and then of course the envelopes the guests bring along...

  3. Have seen a few but never know where to get them when necessary :)


  4. Wow.. very interesting post. Thanks for sharing!

  5. I so dislike the give and take ritual. All of it! The money, the logistics... Maddening! Again a great peek into the Indian weddings!

  6. never realised that envelope handling is a diff department itself. I love those beautiful envelopes :)

  7. Ever so true, it's a department all on it's own. But I love the colourful envelopes.

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