Unique And Interesting Wedding Traditions

Adding your own personal flair to your wedding ceremony or reception will create a memorable and fun event for all guests. Try adding one or more of these worldly traditions to add spice or to bring your guests and yourselves back to your roots.

Traditions, the transmittal of an element of culture from one generation to another, are plentiful during weddings and receptions and symbolize the happiness, luck and joy needed for the newlyweds. Many times the theme or color scheme of the celebration is dictated by traditions. When planning a wedding, try to add a few worldly traditions that will spice up the affair, create a memorable experience for all and, perhaps, show a bit of the family's roots to those in attendance.

Most couples have heard of, or experienced, the Victorian traditions such as, a bride wearing something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, and a sixpence (or dime) in her shoe.

The "old" should come from a happily married woman and insures a lucky transfer of happiness. The new is usually the wedding gown, or apparel, signifying a new beginning. The borrowed should be an object of gold to guarantee wealth and fortune. The blue is symbolic of the heavens and true love. And the sixpence (dime) is to be worn in the heel of the left shoe to provide future wealth and prosperity.

Another Victorian tradition involves the transfer of the bride from father to groom. Though modern day has edged out the true meaning of transferring responsibility, many parent figures still give the bride away; a gesture of saying goodbye to the daughter and welcoming a wife/husband and extended family.

Men's shoes were once thrown after or attached to a departing couple's carriage as an additional symbol of one family transferring the responsibility to another. And in some current cultures, the delivery of a men's pair of shoes to a requesting groom, signifies that the family approves of the marriage.

Today's weddings can be elegant or casual and can incorporate just about anything a couple desires. With a little research and planning, a hodge-podge of cultures that represent the entire family can be incorporated into a ceremony. Try adding one or more of these:

Add an Early American tradition by incorporating gloves as an accessory to the groom or bride's apparel; a symbol of modesty and romance. Without the letter "g," gloves become a pair of loves that still compliment any formal wedding.

In Fiji, it is customary for a groom to present a valuable gift to his bride's father. Traditionally, this present is a whale's tooth, symbolizing status and wealth.

At Hawaiian weddings, flower garlands known as leis are traditionally placed around the necks of the bride and groom and are exchanged during the ceremony. Leis symbolize love and respect - exchanging them is equal to taking a vow.

A Filipino tradition involves pinning the bride's veil to the groom's shoulder to symbolize the couple being clothed as one. Or, a white cord in draped around the couple's necks to represents the eternal bond. In addition, a unity candle is lit during the marriage ceremony and blessed by the priest for a life of faithfulness and prosperity.

The Filipino traditions continue to the reception as guests pin money to the newlyweds to help pay for the honeymoon. Often times, there is a birdcage decorated as a wedding bell with white doves inside. The newlyweds release the birds, symbolizing their new life starting together in peace.

In Estonia, the wedding reception includes a custom to determine the next groom. The groom, wearing a top hat, is surrounded and blindfolded by the single men in attendance. They spin him around and then the groom shakily and dizzily puts his top hat on the bachelor next to marry.

Russian traditions include a relative or close friend making a wedding toast to the bride and groom. Everyone throws his or her champagne glasses on the floor; it is considered good luck if the glasses break when they hit the ground.

A Hungarian tradition of each male dancing with the bride, giving her a coin and getting a kiss in return, can be adapted for today's receptions. If a number of male children or teens are present, they can dance with the bride, give her a chocolate coin and come away with a kiss on the cheek.

Some simple ways of adding culture can be accomplished by carrying a lump of sugar to ensure a sweet life, entwining ivy as a symbol of endless love in the bouquet, or adding lavender for a prosperous and children-filled life.

Whatever new or old traditions are carried to the wedding or reception, be certain to explain the meanings. Small cards of explanation or announcements will create a nice, memorable surprise for those in attendance.

© High Speed Ventures 2011