Women of Worth 2017

Wedding Belle

The master planner on how fantasy weddings turned out to be a very lucrative business

Vishal Koul

The wedding day is the most important day of a couple’s life. But thanks to Bollywood’s infamous ‘big fat Indian weddings’ it is now every couple’s — and more so every bride’s dream. Making these dreams come true is India’s ace wedding planner, Vandana Mohan. And mind you, ensuring all the taam-jhaam is in place is no cakewalk. This is the story of a lady who majored in political science, aspired to join Jawaharlal Nehru University and wanted to work for the United Nations. But as fate would have it, she went on to become one of India’s top wedding planners. Looking at her eventful journey thus far, one might say she does have a Midas touch — not everyone has the ability to steer things in their favour at every turn of life. 

It all began around 28 years ago, when Mohan became India’s first woman event manager by starting her own company, Backstage Productions. Few years into the business, she had her hands full doing corporate events and luxury brand launches, when one of her clients asked her to manage his daughter’s wedding in 2003. Mohan’s initial reaction when asked to plan this wedding was, “Weddings? I don’t do weddings!” Sensing her reluctance, he asked her to treat it like a corporate party with 600 people and no branding. 

Nearly two and a half decades later, the board outside her office in the crowded Masjid Road in Delhi still reads Backstage Productions. But its big blue door opens to the ethereal and classy setting of The Wedding Design Company (WDC), which has now become the face of its parent company. Today, Mohan makes weddings a dreamy affair for Indians across the world and has to her credit some high profile clients, such as the weddings of Prince Shivraj Singh and Princess Gayatri Kumari, Vikram Chatwal and Deepak Parekh’s son, amongst many others. 

Branching out
Mohan hails from a middle class family in Delhi and was interested in modelling and TV compering during her college days. As time went by, she started working more on documentary filmmaking, scripting, writing and anchoring and from there on, progressed to production. And

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