Tag Archives: wedding traditions

Something Old

As part of the saying goes “Something old….,” is a portion of what is representative of good luck for your upcoming nuptials. Whether traditional or modern in nature, many brides follow the superstition if for nothing more than fun.

Your bouquet is a great place to start. Everyone’s grandma had handkerchiefs (usually handmade) that can be wrapped around your flowers rather than the typical ribbon tie. Perhaps you have your parents’ or grandparents’ wedding rings. Even if only borrowing them for the day, you can secure them in the ribbon. Then you can feel them as you hold your bouquet and they symbolize the lengthy marriage you long to have.

Every bride looks forward to opulent jewels accenting their dress on the special day. However, there are many families in which brides have worn the same jewelry for generations. If that is the case in yours, it would be very meaningful for you keep up the tradition for them (and likely in retrospect, for you).

Most girls gather things that are meaningful in some way as a child. If you’d rather not be so traditional, you can incorporate something from your collection and, depending upon what it is, find a way to integrate it into your ceremony or reception.

A great idea is to include your husband. Maybe there is a pin he could wear on his lapel in place of a boutonniere from someone meaningful to you both.

While your wedding day is all about you and your fiancé, it’s hard to discount how meaningful it is for your family to be included. They are your roots, the epitome of relationships you strive to have and the beginning of two families joining together.

Unite Me

Many couples getting married choose to personalize their wedding by incorporating a unity ceremony.   A unity candle is what one thinks of most but there are a number of other options that have the same meaning.  Customarily these are performed immediately following the exchange of vows and rings but occasionally they will take place earlier in the wedding. Soft music is often played during this time.

The sand ceremony is a modern and unique alternative to the unity candle. You and your groom pour a different color of sand into a clear container. Each color represents your past lives as individuals and the blending of the sand provides the visual representation of your coming together as one.  This is a perfect opportunity to include children and other family members if you choose to.  As each person pours a different colored sand into the vase, they are making a commitment to become one family.

The cross ceremony is beautiful way to celebrate the joining of two people. It is most often used in church weddings. The outer portion of a multi-pieced cross represents the groom and the inner portion, the bride. When put together, the pieces form a beautiful cross which represents your togetherness in marriage through God. Once the cross is assembled, it is placed on a stand on which your names and wedding date have been inscribed.

The love letter ceremony is one in which you and your finance write letters to one another before the wedding telling each other why you fell in love.  During the wedding ceremony, the letters are placed in a wooden box to be opened at a later date, usually on an anniversary.

Rose ceremonies are a lovely addition to any wedding and are another alternative to the unity candle. A single red rose has always meant “I love you.” Occurring before the final prayer and marriage pronouncement, you and your groom exchange two red roses which symbolize both your first gift to one another and your love for each other throughout your married life.

Although a unity ceremony is not necessary in order to symbolize the joining of two people, it is a beautiful and meaningful addition to any wedding.

 

Trend-Me

When it comes to preparing for your wedding, what initially seems fun and easy can quickly become overwhelming and stressful with you realizing that you don’t even know where to begin. One place to do just that is by reading up on the current trends for points of inspiration, but keeping them as that…points of inspiration. You don’t want to look back and realize that you chose elements simply because they were “hip” thing at the time or that you omitted things that were important by going along with what was popular in the moment. However, by considering and being aware of what is new and in style, you have a great jumping off point for ways to show your personality and a solidification that you are no longer expected to follow the traditions of generations past.

Put it in print. In the past, weddings have been infamous for bridesmaids and groomsmen wear a single, matching color (many of which are standard and/or drab), but times are changing. Don’t be afraid to choose shirts, ties or dresses with prints, stripes or any other type of design, whether singularly or in combination. The possibilities are endless, fun and a great display of your personality (not to mention a pleasant surprise for your guests). While mint continues to be a very popular shade, your imagination is now the limit in reference to color options. If you choose not to use every color in the rainbow and stick to a single one, have some fun by making it bold and bright instead of keeping it muted.

LESS is more. The focus is on ceremonies in smaller venues with a fewer number of invitees in attendance. The focus is shifting from the prominence of the location and decorations to a more minimalistic approach that spotlights the bride and groom and the reasons for the ceremony. It is easy for guests to get caught up in the flowers, the number of bridesmaids or trying to figure out who everyone is and how they know the couple. Then, the ceremony has ended and the meaning behind it has been lost. If you want to have the ambiance of a small and intimate ceremony but are having difficulty whittling down the guest list, utilize the option of streaming your ceremony online. That way, those who are closest and most important are physically present while distant friends and relatives can share your day with you in a different way.

Go back in time. What was once old is new again. There is an emergence of vintage elements which can either create a feeling from the past or can be incorporated and used in a modern and fresh way. Wear a lace gown in a modern silhouette with a strand of pearls or a dress that is a shade of ivory in place of stark white. Don’t shy away from the notion of a gown with a higher neckline or sleeves. Both can be done in beautiful fabrics that are not opaque or stifling but instead add a touch of elegance that is fresh and unique. Keep in mind that there is a world of difference between vintage and retro and that vintage does not mean used or “pre-owned.”

The most popular trend, by far, is to have fun and do things your way. If you imagine yourself walking down the aisle in a canary colored dress, wear a canary colored dress. If your best friend is a male, let him stand up as your man of honor instead of choosing someone you’re not as close to simply because they’re female. Don’t walk down the aisle to “Here Comes the Bride” if there’s another song you prefer. After all, your wedding day is just that, YOUR day. Let your personality shine and give your guests a sense of you who you are. After all, it is important that you can look back on your wedding day without regrets and knowing that you celebrated in a way that was absolutely perfect for you.

Weddings 101…Part 1

unity

Making decisions in reference to your wedding day can certainly make you want to pull your hair out and can easily make you sometimes just want to give up. It is natural to become obsessive about absolutely everything because a wedding is an occasion that only happens once in your life. However, as has often been said, imperfection is perfection and that is what makes every person and every situation beautiful and wonderful in its own right.

Throw caution to the wind. The only perfect way to commemorate your wedding day is the way that feels right to you. It is not the way that traditions dictate, in accordance with other’s opinions or in an attempt to make sure everyone agrees with your decisions. Be honest and true to yourselves and go with your instincts. After all, if you want to wear a yellow dress but choose not to in fear that others may not like it, for example, you will likely look back and wish that you had. You select things for a reason, and while you may offer up explanations, you should never have to seek acceptance for those decisions.

It is important that your wedding day is a representation of the two of you as a couple. In order for that to happen, both of you have to want and be willing to take part in the planning process. Of course, there are things such as your dress selection that will be individual decisions but, for the most part, it should be a team effort. As many times as you might want to hear “You make the decisions and I’ll just show up,” in reality, that is not a good sign. If you and a co-worker were planning for a meeting or presentation, that would never be an appropriate response. Your wedding day is a symbol of the beginning of your lives together and a lack of interest can be indicative of things to come.

Keep an open mind. If your entire focus is on one vision and you are unwilling to accept anything else, you will always look back at your wedding as a disappointment. Every little detail will not be flawless. You  may have forgotten to invite someone. Maybe you wish you had chosen a different hairstyle. The beauty is in those things that were unplanned, unexpected and other than what fit in to the perfect picture. If you get too caught up in everything being just as you envision it, you will lose the enjoyment of a once-in-a-lifetime experience. After all, your engagement period and wedding day are times for celebration and not obsession.

Be yourself. If you feel the tears coming, let them fall. If you’re on the verge of giggling when things are supposed to be “serious,” laugh. Your wedding is a representation of who you are, individually and together. It is a series of moments with those who are important to you that you have chosen to share. Make them honest and true. Don’t filter yourself. The reason you are so important to those at your ceremony is because you are who you are and not because you are pretending to be someone else.

Traditionally Speaking…

Most people plan their wedding ceremonies based on what they have seen from attending other weddings or from what their friends and family tell them in reference to how a ceremony should be conducted. Here are some interesting facts behind the traditions that make up most weddings.

The reason that the wedding ring is worn on the fourth finger of the left hand can be traced back to the ancient Romans. It was believed that the vein in that finger led directly to the heart and was called the “vein of love.”

The flower girl symbolizes a transition of a girl turning into a wife and mother. She is an image of innocence and is a sign of fertility for the newlyweds.

Bouquets were originally included in weddings as a way to keep evil spirits away. They are also a sign of new life and hope.

Although these days, many brides choose to have their bridesmaids wear the same color dresses in a variety of styles, the reason that their attendants initially wore the exact same dress is because it was believed that doing so would keep evil spirits away from the couple on their wedding day.

Every newly married couple feeds one another the first bite of the wedding cake. This tradition began in Rome and was believed to show the special bond between the couple. The sweetness of the cake itself is believed to bring sweetness to all aspects of the newlyweds’ lives.

Finally (and most importantly), the notion of the first kiss as husband and wife began as a way for the bride and groom to seal their marriage vows and commitment to one another. As if the rings and vows themselves weren’t enough, the kiss was a sign that the couple intended to follow through and spend the rest of their lives together.