Wedding ceremonies in various cultures involve a wide range of customs.
Traditions during weddings, from the first meeting of the families of the wedding couple to the afterparty, vary greatly from one country to the next and even from one region to the next.
Discovering new and exciting ways to celebrate a marriage can be found by looking into the traditions of other cultures as well as your own family's heritage.
Some future spouses are quite concerned with sticking to customs when planning their wedding.
Wedding traditions include: cutting the cake, saying "I do," wearing grandma's veil, and bringing "something old" and "something new."
However, as couples seek unique ways to celebrate their union, many are reevaluating age-old customs.
They are not reluctant to abandon an antiquated practise.
In my opinion, a wedding should seem like a unique and special reflection of the couple getting married.
Even though certain customs have seen better days, others are indispensable.
Let's check over a few of them to determine if we need to keep them, get rid of them, or just update them.
Customs at Weddings and Why They Matter
A Wedding Gown in White
The traditional colour for a bride's wedding dress has changed from red to the now-standard white.
This custom was discontinued after Queen Victoria wed Prince Albert.
Since then, the tradition of having brides wear white as a sign of innocence has continued.
There is no need to feel constrained, as today's bridal designers create gowns in a stunning array of colours (and prints). Get yourself a dress you can't wait to wear, no matter the colour.
Brides in ancient Rome were rumoured to have worried about being cursed by evil spirits out of jealousy for their newfound happiness.
As a result, veiling the bride became customary as a means of protecting her from malevolent spirits.
In today's weddings, the bride makes a grand entry in style with the help of her veil.
Wedding veils have been traced back to the practise of arranged marriages. In times past, marriage was a mechanism for families to legally settle disputes and increase their wealth by exchanging daughters.
Traditionally, the first time a bride and groom see each other is at the altar on their wedding day.
The bride's face was hidden beneath the veil until after the nuptials were over. This precaution was taken so that the groom wouldn't back out if he changed his mind after seeing the venue.
It has been suggested that the veil was initially used in weddings by the Ancient Romans, who worried that the bride's good fortune on her wedding day would make her a target for bad spirits.
The veil served to shield the bride's face from any evil spirits who could be envious of her newfound bliss and attempt to sabotage the marriage.
The veil is a modern symbol of the bride's purity.
Or you may just use it as a great accessory.
It is customary for the bride and groom to not meet one other before the wedding ceremony.
It was considered extremely unlucky for the man to set eyes on his future wife.
A first peek, however, is a popular choice among many engaged couples nowadays.
There are a lot of perks to doing this, such as having some alone time or getting the couple shot away from the way in order to relax and socialise with your guests during cocktail hour.
This is a matter of taste, but nonetheless, the very first minute you see one another will be an unforgettable and profound experience.
The tradition of giving and receiving bouquets of flowers is quite old.
In order to fight off evil spirits, women would carry fragrant bundles of garlic, herbs, and spices.
Some also held that doing so would protect them from catching the plague.
It is customary today for the bride to select the floral centrepieces for the ceremony and reception.
The custom of the bridesmaids wearing identical attire dates back to Roman times.
Possibly to fend off evil spirits or unwanted suitors, the bride and her entourage all dressed alike.
Many modern brides opt to have their attendants wear a variety of dresses rather than matching ones.
So, everyone can find a dress that looks good on them!
There is a similar superstitious origin to the custom of having bridesmaids.
For centuries, bridesmaids have mimicked the bride's attire in an effort to throw off any evil spirits who might be intent on ruining the happy occasion.
The Best Man
Once upon a time, a man's swordsmanship was measured by the "best" in best man.
In times past, when weddings were more often considered a business transaction than a marriage of love, the groom often needed the assistance of a skilled swordsman to either rescue a fleeing bride or appease her family, who might not be pleased with the impending match.
The Wedding Cake
Wedding cakes have been served at ceremonies as far back as the Middle Ages.
Wheat, a symbol of abundance and growth, was formerly a common ingredient in ancient cakes.
These "wedding cakes" were likely tossed at the bride as part of ancient fertility customs.
Once a very simple affair, wedding cakes have become elaborate multi-tiered confections.
White, the traditional cake colour, represents cleanliness and innocence.
Cutting the cake together was meant to be a sign of the couple's first shared responsibility as husband and wife.
The bride and groom's symbolic act of sharing a slice of wedding cake represents their newfound unity.
The days of the tiered fruitcake at the wedding are long gone.
What's the deal with having a cake, though?
And do we really need to cut the cake? Perhaps no, but before you discard the custom entirely, think about the pluses of having cake or a cake alternative.
They're delicious, can double as dessert, and look fantastic in pictures.
Serve a cheese stack, a doughnut tower, or whatever sweet treat you and your sweetheart enjoy instead of the usual fare.
Guests will understand that the primary event is winding down when dessert is served formally.
Throwing the Bouquet
This is one custom that can be abandoned without guilt.
The point when all the unmarried women are gathered on the main stage to compete for the bride's bouquet is never a popular one.
Skip this event and spare your pals the hassle. Give the bouquet to the lady that is extremely important to you, like your mother or grandmother.
In ancient Egypt, the circle of an engagement ring represented a never-ending cycle, while the opening in the middle represented a beginning.
The Sicilians popularised the practise of including a diamond since they thought the stone had been shaped by the passions of love.
What's up with the left hand's fourth finger? The tradition of wearing the band on the left hand’s fourth finger dates back to antiquity.
It was long thought that the "ring" finger had a vein that ran directly to the heart. "Vena amoris," which literally means "vein of love," was the name given to this vein.
Only the groom may traditionally place the engagement ring on the finger of his bride.
There wasn't much of a wait before the groom and the bride were able to exchange rings.
The Bearer of the Ring and His Pillow
That's why the ring bearer carries a pillow, to represent the realisation of your sweetest desires.
Traditionally, the pillow, which stands for hope, youth, and the promise of better days ahead, is given to a young kid to carry.
At least once, we've all been to a wedding when the speeches lasted for what seemed like an eternity.
Having the speakers keep their remarks brief is a terrific idea, but you should still make time for speeches on your wedding day. You will remember their kind remarks and wishes for a very long time.
The Very First Dance
Many couples hate having to clumsily shuffle through a slow song in front of their guests.
But if you perform a song that has special meaning to you, the very first dance can be a beautiful opportunity to bring your family members into your relationship.
If either you or your spouse is indeed a nervous dancer, try to keep things brief.
Following the first verse, invite your guests to the dance floor or request that the DJ play a faster song.
Rain, a symbol of good fortune, fertility, and wealth, is represented by the tossing of rice as the ceremony comes to a close.
In recent years, well-intentioned bystanders at weddings have warned guests against flinging rice since it is believed to kill birds that accidentally consume it after the party is over.
It turned out that was not the case. Grain poses little immediate threat to birds, but these days people usually use bubbles or sparkles as part of the farewell.
Tossing the Garter
The custom can trace its roots all the way back to England and France.
In the past, it was common practise for wedding guests to try to steal a swatch of the bride's dress as a symbol of good fortune, leaving the bride anxious and on edge throughout the entire ceremony.
As the couple hurriedly left the event, the groom began flinging out a part of a bride's bridal dress to divert the guests and calm the bride's nerves.
The Irish believed the clanging of bells at a wedding would drive away bad luck and provide prosperity to the newlywed couple and their new family.
Carrying the Bride
It was the husband's job to physically take her over the threshold of the bedroom and coax her inside.
When entering her new home for the very first time, the bride should use the front door and be careful not to slip down the stairs, since this would bring bad luck.
So, the bridegroom would traditionally bring his bride inside on his shoulders.
Saving the Wedding Cake’s Top Layer for First Anniversary
This custom is easily explained by recalling the old nursery rhyme, "First comes love, then follows marriage, finally comes the baby in a baby carriage!"
Historically, it was widely accepted that a marriage signalling the imminent arrival of a child, leading many to combine the marriage and christening celebrations and even share a cake for both events.
As extravagant, multi-tiered wedding cakes became increasingly popular during the nineteenth century, the baptismal cake gradually fell out of favour.
Traditionally, the top layer of the cake would go to waste, so many newlyweds started using the christening as an excuse to finally eat it.
Couples may then rationalise the use of three levels, with the bottom level serving as the banquet, the middle level as the gift distribution, and the top level serving as the christening.
Culture, Tradition and Respect
It's important to learn the background of any wedding rituals from other cultures before incorporating them into your own.
There are many different kinds of wedding traditions, and because many of them are tied to a person's religious or spiritual views, it is considered rude to imitate them if you don't hold those same values.
Choose wisely, and remember that not all of your guests may feel welcome engaging in particular activities.
Some wedding customs may have faded with the years, but others, especially those involving grandparents, remain very significant.
Also, they help the family bond via shared experience.
We believe that every wedding retains some measure of the traditions that formerly marked it, even though many of those customs no longer are relevant or are legally binding for today's brides and grooms.
If they hold sentimental value, we may help you update them or maintain them as is.
We're firm believers that a traditionally beautiful wedding will last a lifetime and produce the most heartwarming memories for you and your loved ones.
Most importantly, your wedding day should reflect who you are as a person, regardless of the customs you choose to observe.
Numerous modern-day couples are rethinking traditional wedding practises in search of more personal and meaningful ways to commemorate their nuptials.
Some traditions may have seen better days, but others are still vital.
Let's review a couple of them and decide whether we should maintain them, get rid of them, or just update them.
The bride's veil has evolved into a contemporary emblem of virginity.
The bride and groom traditionally first see each other at the altar on the day of the wedding.
It is a Roman tradition for the bridesmaids to all dress the same at the wedding. These days, it's common for brides to have their attendants dress in a wide range of formalwear.
Tradition holds that the bride's attendants should dress like the bride to protect the wedding.
The newlyweds' first joint duty as man and wife was symbolised by their cutting the wedding cake jointly.
Nowadays, brides and grooms don't even bother with a multi-tiered fruitcake for the reception.
Engagement rings in ancient Egypt had a double meaning: the opening in the middle marked a new beginning, and the circle itself denoted a never-ending cycle.
Because they believed that diamonds were fashioned by romantic love, Sicilians made them a standard part of engagement rings.
No couple wants to embarrass themselves by swaying awkwardly to a slow song at a party.
Irish tradition held that ringing bells during a wedding would usher in a lifetime of happiness and success for the pair.
It was common practise in the past to combine the wedding and christening ceremonies, and even to cut the cake in half, because it was assumed that the arrival of a child would be imminent after the wedding.
Although many old wedding rituals are irrelevant or not legally obligatory for modern couples, they should nevertheless be observed to some degree.
While some wedding traditions may have lost their significance over time, those that involve the bride and groom's grandparents are still highly important today.
- Wedding ceremonies in various cultures involve a wide range of customs.
- Discovering new and exciting ways to celebrate a marriage can be found by looking into the traditions of other cultures as well as your own family's heritage.
- Some future spouses are quite concerned with sticking to customs when planning their wedding.
- Wedding traditions include: cutting the cake, saying "I do," wearing grandma's veil, and bringing "something old" and "something new."
- However, as couples seek unique ways to celebrate their union, many are reevaluating age-old customs.
- Traditionally, the first time a bride and groom see each other is at the altar on their wedding day.
- It has been suggested that the veil was initially used in weddings by the Ancient Romans, who worried that the bride's good fortune on her wedding day would make her a target for bad spirits.
- The veil is a modern symbol of the bride's purity.
- It is customary for the bride and groom to not meet one other before the wedding ceremony.
- There is a similar superstitious origin to the custom of having bridesmaids.
- Once upon a time, a man's swordsmanship was measured by the "best" in best man.
- These "wedding cakes" were likely tossed at the bride as part of ancient fertility customs.
- The tradition of wearing the band on the left hand's fourth finger dates back to antiquity.
- Only the groom may traditionally place the engagement ring on the finger of his bride.
- That's why the ring bearer carries a pillow, to represent the realisation of your sweetest desires.
- Many couples hate having to clumsily shuffle through a slow song in front of their guests.
- The custom can trace its roots all the way back to England and France.
- In the past, it was common practise for wedding guests to try to steal a swatch of the bride's dress as a symbol of good fortune, leaving the bride anxious and on edge throughout the entire ceremony.
- As the couple hurriedly left the event, the groom began flinging out a part of a bride's bridal dress to divert the guests and calm the bride's nerves.
- The Irish believed the clanging of bells at a wedding would drive away bad luck and provide prosperity to the newlywed couple and their new family.
- So, the bridegroom would traditionally bring his bride inside on his shoulders.
- It's important to learn the background of any wedding rituals from other cultures before incorporating them into your own.
- Most importantly, your wedding day should reflect who you are as a person, regardless of the customs you choose to observe.
FAQ ABOUT WEDDING TRADITIONS
What makes a wedding traditional?
One way to celebrate a new marriage is with a traditional wedding, which honours the traditions of the bride and groom and combines cultural elements with a festive environment. In many cases, the total expense of the wedding is overlooked in favour of the importance of including rituals from both cultures.
Why are wedding traditions important?
The customs of the past should be kept alive. Create visual metaphors for significant aspects of marital life. Spend quality time doing something memorable with your future husband. Allow everyone in the wedding party to take part in traditional activities.
What do weddings symbolize?
The wedding is a symbol of the covenant between God and humanity symbolised by the shedding of blood. The ancient and holy covenant that God formed with Abraham is the foundation for many of the wedding traditions used today.
How long do traditional wedding ceremonies last?
The average wedding ceremony lasts between 20 and 30 minutes, which is more than enough time to say welcome, have a few readings, exchange vows, exchange rings, and make any final announcements.
Why does the bride wear white wedding dress?
The tradition probably goes back more than two thousand years, to when brides wore white tunics in the Roman Republic (509 B.C. - 27 B.C. ). White was the colour of chastity and the beginning of a woman's new life as a married Roman matron.