These days, brides and grooms seem to be breaking with tradition more often than in previous generations. As you are planning your own nuptials, it’s best to learn the reason for many of these traditions and then decide what to keep—and what to ditch.
According to this rhyme from Victorian times, the “something old” symbolizes the bride’s bond to her family and her past. “Something new” represents the couple’s future. “Something borrowed” should be an item given from a happily married woman in order to give similar happiness to the new bride. Lastly, “something blue” shows fidelity and steadfastness.
Sharing the first piece of cake
Many of us have witnessed couples stuffing wedding cake into each other’s mouths, but why? According to the Romans, where this tradition derived, sharing the first piece of cake creates a special bond between the couple. Also, the sugar is thought to bring sweetness to all aspects of the couple’s new life.
Although rice is rarely used any more, the tradition remains the same. This ancient tradition represents fertility. Couples these days often opt for bird seed or bubbles (especially after an urban legend circulated about rice making birds blow up…by the way, it’s not true.).
Wedding ring on the third finger
In ancient times, it was believed the vein in your third finger ran straight to the heart and, thus, this finger represented all things love. Although this is actually untrue, the tradition remains.
The veil literally represented the subordination of a woman. It was also worn because, back in the day, fathers often times gave away their daughters as payment for debts or in order to receive monetary gain. And, if the father was giving away his ugly daughter, he didn’t want the groom to know. These days, veils are often used as a fashion statement; bird cage veils are a nice alternative to the long, traditional pieces.
Giving the bride away
And this brings us to another not-so-nice wedding tradition. Today, the father walking his daughter down the aisle is a real tearjerker, but this comes from a time when daughters were little more than a nice bartering chip to good old daddy dearest.
Now that some of those quirky wedding traditions have been unveiled, pick and chose what is right for you. Also, feel free to tweak a few here and there in order to create your own wedding traditions that better fit your style and values.