It is my privilege to introduce you to our newest preferred vendor, Sarahenna! Sarah, is a unique artisan who specializes in Mehndi and henna designs for the body. Take a moment to compare her work with other henna artists around the web and one will immediately discover she brings unmatched quality to this craft in our Seattle community. This collaborative project was unlike any other I have done. The photography that follows documents my exploration into a new world of beautiful Indian culture.
Mehndi is “henna” (an herb) applied as temporary body decoration during a traditional Indian wedding. It begins with the preparation of the henna herb leaf which has been ground into fine powder. As a notable distinction, Sarah only imports high quality, natural, earth friendly products directly from India.
Water, sugar, and exotic oils are mixed together to form the henna paste. It is then injected into foil cones that will act as the drawing utensil.
Our model, Karishma Sharma, is required to sit patiently for the next 7 hours as Sarah applies the designs with meticulous care. The drawings are primarily applied to the hand and foot regions as they will be the most receptive to the henna pigment. Though it acts as a tattoo, its effects will only last around 2 weeks.
Because the process requires many hours to complete, the paste will begin to dry before the pigment has the opportunity to set. Lemon juice and sugar water are dabbed regulary to keep it moist for as long as possible. The bride will be wrapped in protective layers and asked to remain as still as possible overnight.
The following day, the paste has dried and can be rubbed off to reveal the designs. They appear faint at first, but as time passes the designs will become darker in color. With moisturizer, the life of a design can be extended to about three weeks.
The Mehndi tradition is considered to be one of the most important preparation rituals for the Indian bride. The time of application is meant to be shared with her family and friends, often its even accompanied with dancing and singing.
In some Indian communities, Mehndi also signifies a special time in a bride's life where she is waited on hand and foot, not being permitted to perform even the least amount of work until it has worn off.
Henna is not just for wedding Mehndi! Sarah provides a wide range of services to enhance the body for any culture or any occasion! When you contact her, also ask her to tell you about the exciting new clothing design!