Leaving Home

Leaving Home

The emotion is high as the bride throws puffed rice over her head to convey her good wishes for her parents as she leaves home.

When an Indian bride leaves her parents home after her wedding, the tradition emotional ceremony is called a Doli. A doli is a cot suspended by four corners from a bamboo pole and was traditionally decorated and used to carry the bride. Today, doli refers to the actual ceremony of a bride departing the home of her parents and a decorated car is usually provided for this purpose.


Doli ceremony recipe

Ingredients required:

  • Money for bride’s sisters (from groom)
  • Money to give sagan to couple
  • Rice for bride to throw
  • Ring for bride’s sister
  • Kalichrian – Silver rings for female cousins as a gift from groom
  • Oil in a small bowl (can be mustard oil or baby oil)



After the wedding ceremony, the bride and groom go to the home of the bride’s parents.

  1. The bride goes inside immediately, while the groom participates in a series of fun rituals in order to be allowed entry into the home.The sisters and cousins of the bride will only allow entry if the groom pays them a negotiated monetary sum.
  2. Guests arrive and are served chai and sweets.
  3. The bride and groom are seated together, surrounded by their family.
  4. The bride’s parents (and guests that wish to do so) give money as sagan to the bride and groom.
  5. The bride is ushered to the front door by her parents and family.
  6. Before stepping outside of the house she throws three, five or seven handfuls of rice (depending on the family’s preference) behind her. This symbolizes repaying her parents for all they have done for her.
  7. The family walks her to the waiting car and she will depart for her in-laws home, accompanied by her younger brother or male relative.
  8. As the car leaves, the brothers and male cousins give the car a push to help their sister start her new life.
  9. The father of the groom throws coins as the couple departs showing his happiness at the conclusion of this ceremony. Traditionally, this was done as a way to give money to the poor children in the village.
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