Tag Archives: Tradition

Wedding Traditions from around the World

Weddings have so many traditions that if you really think about, are weird. Wearing a white dress (any other occasion completely unpractical), Being given away by your father, wearing a veil. However in comparison to some other wedding traditions out there, these nuptial customs seem pretty mild. From elaborate costume changes, humiliating the groom and regimented weeping; worldwide wedding traditions are a varied bunch. Although some of them are a tad extreme, I think a few of these traditions could be incorporated to make a pretty awesome day! I present to you my multicultural wedding day schedule, would you adopt any of these for your wedding day?

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In India, a few days before the wedding, the bride is decorated with intricate henna designs on her hands and feet. Other females in the family and female friends also apply henna in a ritual that can take hours to apply and dry. The Bride and groom also exchange rings and sweets. This tradition is called a ‘menhdi party’ and sounds like a great excuse to extend the festivities and give all the females gorgeous henna designs for the big day.

A Russian tradition dictates that the groom must go to the brides house before the wedding and ask her family and friends for her. They naturally refuse until he has presented gifts, money, jewellery and sufficiently humiliated himself. Grooms are forced to do silly dances, answer riddles, and perform goofy tests of worthiness like putting a nappy on a baby doll. Once the crowd is satisfied, he may meet his bride.

Another great wedding tradition from China is to have 3 wedding dresses; one traditional, embroidered cheongsam that is usually red to represent luck and strength, then a white wedding dress not unlike what we are used to in the west and then a cocktail dress for the reception. Any excuse for a costume change sounds like a good idea to me!

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In Sweden, during the wedding reception, if the groom leaves the room all the other men can try and kiss the bride and vice versa! Think kissy-cats for grown-ups. This one sounds hilarious and is bound to keep everyone awake and alert during the reception. Although hopefully won’t end up with cheating rumours so early on in married life!

The final wedding tradition I’d incorporate comes from South Korea. Here the grooms friends beat his feet with dried fish before he is allowed to leave the wedding with his beloved, in an apparent test of strength and knowledge. Not sure how good a test this is of these qualities, but I do want to see someone getting beaten with dried fish.

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While these wedding traditions all sound like fun and games there are some I am so relived not to have to do, respect for betrothed couples in these countries, they must really want to get married:

In China the bride starts to cry for an hour DAILY a month before her wedding. Ten days later the mum joins her daughter for some tears, after a further ten days the grandmother joins in and by the end of the month every female in the family is weeping. I know married life can be tough but surely a month of regimented crying is a bit pessimistic, I think I’ll stick to the hen do thanks!

On the Maruesas Islands of French Polynesia after the wedding reception is over the relatives of the bride all lay side by side in the dirt, face down. The bride and groom then walk across them like some sort of human rug. Hmmm well this isn’t the worst tradition I’ve heard of, but pretty sure my family would not be up for it.

Charivari: In France the friends and family of the newlyweds congregate outside the newlyweds home on the first night of their marriage while proceeding to bang on pot and pans, yell, and just in general be as annoying as possible. Whoever thought of this tradition is just MEAN and also think of the neighbours!

In Malaysia newlyweds are not allowed to go to the bathroom for 3 days and 3 nights after the wedding to avoid bad luck. Yikes this painful tradition should definitely not be part of your wedding itinerary, although I guess if a couple can get through this, they can survive anything.

To Veil or not to Veil

Here we focus on the ultimate and arguably most contentious piece of wedding gear: the veil. Possibly the only day in your life where it is appropriate to wear one, but does that mean you should?

A traditional wedding veil can conjure up very old fashioned images of traditional weddings with big puffy dresses, unappetizing buffets and boring speeches and at the mere thought of a wedding veil your mind might automatically jump to a Ms. Havisham scenario; and NO bride wants this look anywhere near their big day. However veils have somewhat come back into fashion, in chicer more refined styles that could perfectly compliment your bridal styling.

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I know some brides who had an issue with some of the traditional meanings behind wedding veils; as a symbol of modesty and purity or another instance of being presented as a gift to the groom. But honestly I think so many wedding traditions do stem from questionable places and there is no need to deny yourself a veil on these principles; much better to reclaim it for this generation, where all it needs to stand for is a pretty hair accessory that compliments your dress and makes you feel like the bride of your dreams.

Also there is an insane amount of veils to choose from! Throw out that old image of net curtains and look to these fabulous celebrities for inspiration. Millie from Made in Chelsea rocked it, managing to look cool and fashionable with a mid-length veil. Kate Moss wore a ‘Juliet Cap’ full length veil lending a romantic, pretty edge to her outfit. Christina Ricci opted for a traditional mid length veil that perfectly ties together her bridal outfit. It seems veils are coming back into wedding vogue and with so many different options to choose from, it isn’t hard to understand why.

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Take a look at our specially designed Cute Maps pinterest board completely dedicated to this staple piece of wedding fashion. From pretty bird cage styles to full length cathedral creations, your sure to find the right one for you. Alternatively you could opt for a bejewelled headband, flower headpieces, feathered arrangements, hats, fasteners; the list is endless. Ultimately it’s like all the wedding day styling decisions; so many options and only one chance to use them. Just have fun, pick what you feel most comfortable in and enjoy it. Hell you could even have multiple head adornments for your big day; I think some of these beauties are just too good to miss.

http://www.pinterest.com/cutemaps/veils/