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Thursday, May 21, 2009

American Wedding Customs and Traditions Part 1

Weddings in America are just as diverse as the couple who comes together to share their lives forever. American Traditional weddings take place in a church with family and friends in attendance to help celebrate the joyous occasion. Weddings in America also take place in chapels scattered throughout the U.S., most renowned in Las Vegas(how many celebrities can you name who were known to be wed on the famous Las Vegas chapels? Britney Spears comes in mind...). Some couples choose a wedding ceremony on a beach or in a garden(Today it's referred to as destination wedding). Whatever location you choose for your wedding ceremony, here is a look at some of the customs and traditions that seem to stay with couples no matter where they are.

Something Old, Something New

You have probably heard the saying 'something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, a silver sixpence inside your shoe.' No one is really sure when this custom started. It is believed by many to have begun during the Victorian era, while others argue that it started much earlier than that. Nevertheless, couples have honored this custom through the centuries, and even today. Something old represents the guests in attendance at the ceremony who are already married. Something new represents the newlyweds and the beginning of their new life together. Something borrowed signifies something that the bride must give back, such as her veil or her mother's own wedding dress. Something blue is associated with the bride's virginity and purity. Something silver is any type of silver coin that is tucked into one of the bride's shoes to represent wealth and prosperity(ohh I didn't know about the last line! If I have known I never wore slip on heels).

White Wedding Dress

 Wedding Dance Coloring Page, Picture, ColourThe wedding dress nowadays is usually believed to have to be white or ivory, as this symbolizes purity. This is a newer superstition because white was started to be worn as a wedding dress only during the Victorian age. And that time, white was worn as an announcement of affluence because white dresses then will only be worn once.

A black wedding gown was considered taboo in the last decades, but recently, this is also becoming an option for brides. Black flatters a woman's figure and skin tone, and this flattery is best needed during a bride's wedding day.

The common superstition these days regarding the wedding dress is that the groom is not supposed to see the bride in her wedding dress before the wedding day. There is also the superstition for the bride to avoid wearing the dress before the day and see herself in the mirror because something to prevent the wedding may happen. This is a problem for the brides who want to make sure everything should be perfect on the day. All brides deserve a perfectly-fitting dress. Some who still want to follow this superstition fit the lining of the dress, and leave all trust to the dress maker. Some dress makers leave some stitches unfinished and only do the last finishing stitches before the bride leaves for the wedding(now, that's cramming!).

A common rhyme regarding wedding dress superstition goes :

Married in white, you will have chosen right.
Married in grey, you will go far away.
Married in black, you will wish yourself back.
Married in red, you wish yourself dead.
Married in green, ashamed to be seen.
Married in blue, you will always be true.
Married in pearl, you will live in a whirl.
Married in yellow, ashamed of your fellow.
Married in brown, you will live out of town.
Married in pink, your fortune will sink.

More to come on Part 2! :)

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