In this modern time where the wedding trend is to try to be different, we sometimes forget the old traditions that have been passed on to us. Modern couples nowadays prefer not to conform to these common wedding traditions; they change some of it or choose to remove it totally from their wedding program.
We have listed here some of the most common traditions in a wedding, its origin and what it symbolizes. Check it out and you might decide to make your wedding special by adapting these in your own wedding.
Giving Away the Bride
Once upon a time when women were still considered a ‘property’, the giving away tradition is the father’s way of using his daughter as a currency to pay a debt or purchase a land or livestock. Today, this has a more heart-warming meaning – representing the parents’ blessing to the marriage. This is also very symbolic of the transition of the girl’s life from being a daughter to becoming a wife. Nowadays, some brides opt to walk with their mothers or a close relative while some choose to own this moment and walk down the aisle alone.
White Wedding Dress
Back in the old days, the brides usually just wear their best dress to their wedding. However when Queen Victoria got married in 1840 and wore a white dress, the tradition of “brides in white” has long since been followed. The bride’s wearing of a white dress is said to symbolize her purity that she offers to her husband. Now, most brides also use off-white or beige shade. There are also some who prefers to go for bold colors like red, purple, and even darker shades such as black.
Something Old, New, Borrowed and Blue
The expression above is one of the oldest wedding customs. It is said that the bride’s outfit must contain something old, new, borrowed and something in the shade of blue for luck. The “old” denotes the bride honoring her family and her past. “New” signifies her future. “Borrowed” symbolizes borrowed happiness. While something “blue” represents purity, love, and fidelity.
Doves are a symbol of love because they choose their mates for life – very fitting for the occasion of celebrating the couple’s life-long commitment to each other. The dove release is commonly done after the wedding ceremony. The pure white color of the doves signifies the couple’s welcoming their lives together in purity and without regrets from their past. Common alternative now to doves are butterfly and balloon release.
In this custom, the bride traditionally slices the cake while the groom helps her. This is seen as the first task that the couple does as husband and wife and said to signify their promise to forever provide for each other. The wedding cake also symbolizes an abundant, long lasting and a happy marriage.
Bouquet Toss/ Garter Toss
Towards the end of the wedding reception, the groom tosses the bride’s garter backwards for his groomsmen and some of the bachelor guests to catch. Likewise, the bride also tosses her bridal bouquet to her bridesmaids and single ladies. It is said that whoever gets the garter and the bouquet will be the next in line to get married.