Creative Approaches to the Joota Chori

Looking for a fun twist on the Indian shoe-stealing ceremony (joota chori or joota chupai) between the groom and his new sisters-in-law? Here are some creative approaches we’ve seen in practice:

  1. Steal the bride’s shoes, too! Barter — shoes for shoes — instead of demanding money.
  2. Give the groom Monopoly money to use as he barters.
  3. Ask the audience if they can chip in to help the cause.
  4. Donate proceeds from the ceremony to the couple’s honeymoon fund, or to their favorite charity.
  5. Groom: go barefoot! (Pay the sisters a token ransom anyway.)
  6. Offer up jewelry or thoughtful gifts to the sisters in lieu of cash.
  7. Host the negotiation as the groom enters the wedding reception . . . barefoot.
  8. Choreograph a dance for your bridal party to the classic song, Joote De De, Paise Le Lo, with the groom as part of the grand finale.
  9. Same-sex wedding? Everyone can get in on the shoe-stealing fun. Both brides, or both grooms, can wind up shoeless and engaged in a footwear negotiation.
  10. Why does the groom get to have all the fun? Steal the groomsmen’s shoes, too!
  11. When the groom makes his first pass at the return of his shoes, offer him child-sized shoes in exchange. As the dollar amount of his offer increases, so does the size of the shoes he can buy, until he offers a dollar amount satisfactory to the sisters, who will then give back his actual shoes.
  12. Like #11, but with women’s shoes instead of the groom’s shoes. Stilettos, anyone?

Have you seen other fun options for how to make the shoe stealing an event that all guests will enjoy?