The History of Wedding Traditions

Posted at 07:27 pm Friday May 18th 2012

There are many wedding traditions that brides try to follow without really knowing the history – yet they’re tried, true and followed to the letter!

Whether tradition, superstition, or cultural - here are some of the reasons these traditions have been around so long.

"Something old, something new, something borrowed something blue” - each verse is a good luck message

  • Something old - continuity with the bride's family and the past
  • Something new - optimism and hope for the bride's new life ahead
  • Something borrowed - an item from a happily married friend or family member, whose good fortune in marriage is supposed to carry over to the new bride
  • Something blue - Before the late 19th century, blue was a popular color for wedding gowns, as evidenced in proverbs like, "Marry in blue, lover be true."

Wearing white on the wedding day – most common tradition set by Queen Victoria in 1840

  • Limitations of laundering techniques meant a white dress exuded wealth
  • Showing off such an elaborate dress that could be ruined by any sort of work or spill

The tradition of throwing food - mainly fruit or rice is often recalled by many generations

  • In China - rice is representative of having a full pantry, so it is a wish to send these people into marriage with the luck of having everything they need and more
  • In the United States - rice is thrown to represent fertility and family growth as rice can double or triple in size easily when cooked
  • In Bulgaria - figs are thrown at the bride and groom as they make their getaway! The figs represent a long lasting and sweet marriage

Create traditions on your wedding day!

Has your mother, aunt, mother-in-law or family friend kept their wedding dress? If it’s not your style, ask to use the material of the dress to be implemented into your own dress.

Does your family have special heirloom materials saved? Use these to create your veil, this will cover having something old and something borrowed depending how you look at it. You can even DIY!

What about antique family jewellery? Many brides spice up a less embellished gown with details such as a belt, why not incorporate family brooches, pins, and jewels into this piece to create traditional interest and style.

What about dad’s special tie? If you would like your groom to join in the tradition maybe he can borrow his father’s favorite blue tie, or to tie the families together, he can wear something that belongs to someone from your family.

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