We at Harsanik are passionate about the Armenian culture and our beautiful Armenian wedding traditions, so when we stumbled upon Satiné Bowtique's Kanach Karmir product, we were thrilled to share with all of you. As some of you may know, one of the many Armenian traditions is to have the groom wear Red and Green Ribbons on the wedding day. Kanach and Karmir are the Armenian words for the colors Green and Red. We sat down with Meghedi who recently launched Satiné Bowtique and asked her to tell us more about this tradition, its meaning, and what inspired her to start this business.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and the history behind Satiné Bowtique.
Hi Harsanik readers! My name is Meghedi and I’m here to bring the Armenian Kanach Karmirs into the modern era. One of my favorite characteristics of the Armenian culture is the value we place on tradition, and how we cherish tradition no matter where in the world we live. I love that by doing this we keep our connection to the motherland and continue our rich heritage. As a diasporan Armenian, I’ve always wanted to contribute in some way to keep these proud traditions and pass them onto our children.
I have been unofficially creating Kanach Karmirs for family and close friends for a year now; but officially opened to the public about a month ago. It has been a rewarding learning experience.
During our own wedding, we had a lot of trouble figuring out how to make or purchase a Kanach Karmir. Since Kanach Karmirs are so specific to Armenian weddings, it was very difficult for us to find to purchase, and we had to have ours made. My in-laws and I spent quite a lot of time searching for matching red and green fabrics, trims, and beads. It was a headache finding the colors and shapes we wanted and finding materials we liked without bulk order minimums. We counted 12 trips to just to find materials. That’s more time than a bride spends finding her wedding dress!
After going through this, I realized that I had an opportunity to make this process simpler for other couples and, at the same time, help keep one of my favorite Armenian wedding traditions alive.
What exactly is the red and green ribbon tradition?
There’s an Armenian saying that wishes a person, or couple, a “kanach chanaparh”; which roughly translates to a “green and prosperous road ahead”. The Kanach, or green ribbon, is a sign of this “kanach chanaparh” and prosperity. The Karmir, or red ribbon, symbolizes love and health. The tradition of mothers, sisters, or close family members pinning the Kanach Karmir on the groom is symbolic of their blessings for the couple.
Did you incorporate the red and green ribbons into your wedding?
My husband’s grandmother is very talented and has a keen eye for design. She crafted his Kanach Karmir from scratch for our wedding. We specifically wanted to follow this tradition because of what it represents in our culture. For us, this ceremony symbolizes a mother figure or sister of the groom giving blessings to the soon-to-be married couple.
On our wedding day, my sister-in-law pinned the Kanach Karmir for my husband. Looking back at the pictures, this was such a beautiful and significant moment shared between them.
What has been the most rewarding and challenging part of starting your own business?
It is absolutely rewarding to have the ability to take my ideas and apply them to a meaningful product which preserves a beautiful and proud Armenian tradition. I believe that one of the greatest challenges has been to reign in my ideas. As with any business, once you get started, more and more ideas come to mind and sometimes it’s challenging to clear your mind and regroup.
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