Written By: Mishal Cazmi

This week’s Bridal Diaries features Shivani Persad, a Trinidadian-Canadian model and co-host of the More Than Model podcast. Shivani married her husband Karma Patel this past summer with the ceremony taking place at Paradise Banquet Hall and the reception at Chateau Le Jardin in Toronto, Canada. She shares the story of how they first met, the surprise sky-high proposal and choosing her bridal outfits. 


How they met:

Shivani Persad first met her husband Karma Patel at McMaster University but were little more than acquaintances, hanging out in different circles. Five years after she graduated, he reached out to her on Facebook. “I was single and thought, why not? I always thought he was really smart and handsome, and figured a date couldn’t hurt,” she shares. 


The proposal:

Karma proposed to her while three thousand feet in the air on a plane. “That my brother was flying,” she adds. “It was safe–don’t worry. He’s a pilot.” The surprise proposal took place in front of the CN Tower and caught her completely off-guard. Luckily, he had everything planned, right down to videos with their parents, her brother and sister in-law, and friends. Post-proposal, he whisked her away for dinner with their parents. “It was so cute and exactly what I wanted.”

Her bridal style: 

Shivani describes her style as “comfy, chic and classic” and wanted her bridalwear to reflect that. “As models, we usually wear pretty simple clothing. I'm honestly not very into fashion, which is weird as a model—I know. I just believe in clothing that is comfortable is high quality and I can wear a lot. I like to look put together without looking like I tried too hard because in reality, I probably didn't.”

Choosing Mani Jassal:

“I've known Mani from before she started the brand, and I've been modelling for her for a few years now.” Shivani was well-acquainted with the fit and quality of the clothes, and had a few pieces she already owned. “My favourite thing about Mani's label is that the clothes have a way of being trendy while also being timeless.”

The outfit:

The bride-to-be chose to wear Mani Jassal for her mehendi. She already knew she wanted a floral, summery vibe for the occasion and picked the clothes accordingly. “I knew the exact outfit I wanted as soon as I saw it on Instagram,” she says of the separates she chose from the ‘With Love’ collection: a white floral one-shoulder bustier with a ruffled sheer organza overlay and gold detailing (EROS One-Shoulder Top), and a matching high-waisted circle skirt with a thigh-high slit (EROS Slit Skirt). “It's perfect for a mehendi and I can totally wear it for other events. I actually did wear it to a wedding a few weeks later.” 

It was a smooth experience from start to end for Shivani, from ordering the outfit online to interacting with people at the store. “It was pretty seamless and everything fit the first time!”


Bridal beauty look:

The beauty look inspired by the ethereal hair and makeup from the runway show for Mani Jassal’s ‘With Love’ collection that took place during Toronto Fashion Week. A romantic undone braid was accessorized with a gold hair piece, while the makeup was kept soft with a warm smokey eye. “Mani was sweet enough to give me the exact hair accessories she had the models wear in the show. It completed the look perfectly,” shares Shivani. 

Advice to other brides:

“My main advice is to do what you want and be clear about it. I wish I was more pushy about what I wanted and put my foot down instead of managing people's emotions. In terms of outfits, do lots of research and figure out what fits with your style. I went in thinking I wanted my bridal look to reflect my actual style, which is more simple. Then I realized that out of all the looks, my bridal one should be the one that stands out. It was a weird decision for me, because everyone kept telling me to be more dressy, so I kept fighting it because I didn't want to do it for them. But the more outfits I tried on, the more I realized that I wanted a more classical look—for me. I'm so happy with how it all turned out because I got my simple fix and my full-out bridal look too. I kept my makeup and hair very simple, which allowed me to keep my own style in there, too.”

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