When it comes to love, there is no boundaries and it is universal. But tying the knot and wedding traditions are different all around the world. No matter what part of the world you are from, there are cultural aspects that you can include to make your wedding even more meaningful.
1.Scotland: Blackened the Newlywed
Pre-wedding traditions occasionally include covering the soon-to-be tied couple cover with molasses, mud, and various sauces.
2.Finland: Grab Your Pillowcase
The bride to be will be going from door to door with a pillowcase to receive wedding gifts accompanied by older, married man holding umbrella over her head to shelter her.
3.France: Cut the Ribbons
On the wedding day, children will stretch long white ribbons across the road which the bride will cut as she passes and small coins are also tossed for the children to gather.
4.Germany: Kidnap the Bride
Mostly it is the good friends who kidnap the bride and they go from bar to bar and the best man of the bride (or her father) or the groom have to pay the bill every time.
5.Greece: Pin the Money
Famous tradition in Greece is pinning money on the bride’s dress. It means a substitute for wedding presents.
6.Italy: Green is the New White!
The color green is very important in the Italian wedding. The color means bringing good luck to the married couple. Also the veil is also important which was used to hide the bride from any spirits that would corrupt her and the bridesmaids were to wear similar outfits so that the evil spirits were further confused.
7.Poland: Get Bottle of Vodka to Pass
It is custom in Poland to prepare “passing gates” on the way to the reception for the newlyweds, in order to pass, they have to give the “gate keepers” some vodka. The married couple is welcomed at the reception place by the parents with bread (symbolizes prosperity) and salt (symbolizes hardship of life).
8.Romania: Pay attention, Groom!
Few friends of the newlywed kidnap while the groom is not paying attention and take her somewhere else. The groom is then forced to negotiate the bride’s price and redeem it. They then take the bride back to the wedding and as a punishment they are forced to dance a waltz with the bride lifted up.
9.Russia: Kiss as Long as You Can
The wedding lasts for at least two days and some weddings last as long as a week. The ceremony and the ring exchange takes place on the first day of the wedding. The bride and groom’s first kiss should last for as long as the chanting “Gor’ko” continues by the guests.
10.Sweden: You may NOT kiss the Bride
In Swedish church wedding, the priest doesn’t say when the couple may kiss each other. Because the kiss doesn’t traditionally belong to Swedish wedding customs. The bride and groom go down the aisle together rather than the bride being escorted by her father.
11.India: The most beautiful tattoo
Henna is popular for bride’s hand and feet in ceremony. Another popular ceremony is “Haldi” where the bride and the groom are anointed with turmeric paste.
12.Pakistan: Is the ceremony done yet?
The wedding typically consist of four ceremonies on four separate days. The birde-to-be gets her hands painted with henna on the first day.
13.Sri Lanka: Two is better than One
The weddings are typically celebrated as two events in two days. First day, bride’s family hosts the event and both bride and the groom wears the traditional dress.
14.China: Shoot it!
The bride price is the form of gold jewelry, fine fabric, money, or even a roast pig and it’s based on the groom’s economic status. Wedding presents are given by the elderly couples or couples that are older than the newlyweds, while tea is served by the younger family members. Also, the groom shoot his bride with a bow and arrow several times then collects the arrows and breaks them during the ceremony.
The bride-to-be may be painted pure white from head to toe and declaring status to the gods. The ceremony’s important event happens when the bride and the groom exchange cups of sake.
16.South Korea: Gift giving
Traditionally, the day before the wedding, the groom’s family carry a wedding chest filled with gifts for the bride’s family including wedding geese (symbol for along and happy marriage) and cranes (symbol of long life)
17.Philippines: Show me the dance!
During the bride and the groom’s first dance, money, in the form of paper bills, is taped or pinned to the groom and bride’s dress.
18.Vietnam: You aren’t allowed to decide your own wedding day
The wedding date and time for the marriage ceremony is decided by Buddhist monk, Spiritual leader, or fortune teller. Betel leaf and areca nut is given for wedding gifts.
19.Singapore: Pick me up!
In most weddings in Singapore, the groom will pick up the bride with a tea ceremony and there would also be a dinner banquet.
20.Cuba: Pin the Money
The Cuban wedding customs is that every man who dances with the bride must pin money to her dress to help the couple pay for their wedding and honeymoon. Show your dance move!
21.Turkey: Plant the Flag
On the day of the wedding, friends of the groom plant the Turkish flag, which features a red crescent and star in the ground at his home. Fruit, vegetables and mirrors are placed on top to show the wedding ceremony has begun.
22.Venezuela: Catch us if you can!
It’s good luck for the newlyweds to sneak away before the party’s over without getting caught! It’s also good luck for whichever guests catches on that they’re gone!
23.Mongolia: No Cake Cutting For Us
Instead of cake cutting ceremony, the Mongolian couple must first kill a baby chickens and cut it apart holding the knife together to find a healthy liver.
24.Ireland: Keep your Feet on the Dance Floor
In Ireland when the bride and groom are dancing the bride must keep both feet on the floor at all time. The folk tales says if they don’t, evil fairies will come and sweep her away.
25.French Polynesia: People Rug
Once the wedding has come to an end the relatives of the bride lay side by side face down on the ground while the bride and the groom walk over them like a rug.
26.Peru: Look for the Ring, Single Ladies!
In the wedding, the fake wedding ring is embedded into the center of the cake. The single lady who is served the slice of cake with the fake wedding ring inside is chosen the next to get married.
27.Norway: Look for the Wine
The wedding tradition is to build a tower of iced almond cake rings kransekake. Mostly the tower is build over a wine bottle so nice treat appears as guests break off pieces of the dessert.
28.Jamaica: Christmas cake=Wedding cake
One the wedding day, the dark cake made from dark fruits and rum is served which is served at Christmas and has a lot in common with a traditional Christmas fruit cake.
29.Kenya: Spit it!
After the wedding ceremony, the newly married bride and groom leave the village, the father of the bride spits on his daughter’s head and chest so as not to jinx their good fortune.
30.Guatemala: White Bell, Ring!
At the wedding reception, the mother of the groom breaks a white bell to welcome the brigand the groom to the party. The bell is filled with flour, rise, and grains which represents bringing luck and prosperity.
31.Mexico: Two Bouquet is better than One
In Mexico wedding tradition, it’s common for a bride to carry a bouquet for herself and a another bouquet to give to the Virgin Mary.
32.South Africa: Fire Flame, here we go!
Part of wedding ceremony, the parents of the bride and groom bring the fire from their own fireplaces to the home of the newlyweds. The bride and groom use the flames in their new home together.
33.Australia: Collect Stone as Much as You Can
The wedding ceremony include the tradition of a unity bow which guests are given stones and asked to hold them during the ceremony. At the end of the ceremony, all guests place the stones in a bowl and the couple will keep and display at home to remind them of the support and presence of the guests.
34.Czech Republic: Decorating Tree
The Bride’s friends traditionally plant a tree in her yard and decorate it with colored ribbons and painted eggshells meaning the bride will live as long as the tree.
35.Malaysia: Yellow Rice for You and I
During the ceremony, the bride and groom feed each other yellow rice with hands painted with henna.
36.Spain: Cut the Tie
During the wedding, the groom’s tie is cut into pieces and auctioned off to his friend. It brings good luck to everyone who gets a piece.
37.Egypt: Pinch, pinch, pinch!
The brides are routinely pinched by every single female wedding guest attending the ceremony. Ouch!
38.Morocco: Week long vacation, no wedding!
The wedding lasted up to seven days with separate parties for the men and women. On the last seventh day, the party is combined and the bride is place on a cushion and held in front of friends and family. The men would carry the groom onto their shoulders and the the bride and the groom would be carried off to a special room to finish the wedding ceremony.
39.Fiji: Catch the Whale If You Want To Get Married
In Fiji, the groom-to-be must give something unusual and present it to the father-in-law before you can ask for her hand which is the tooth of a whale.
40.North Korea: Beat the Groom’s Feet with Fish
A traditional marriage custom in North Korea involves the beating of the groom’s feet using canes and fish on the eve of the wedding. Essentially the custom is meant to show the strong character of the groom. Apparently going down the isle ends up being a painful affair the next day.
41.Armenia: Salty Bread and Dreamin’
Single women in Armenia have to consume a chunk of traditionally baked salt bread that’s said to inspire a prophetic vision of the male that would marry her. In the dream there’s bound to be a guy bringing the girl some water and that’s the person she has to get married to.
42.Wales: The Secret of Wooden Spoon
It’s tradition for a man to gift his bride with a carved wooden spoon, symbolizes that she never allow her t ego hungry.
43.Papua New Guinea: Sing-Sings!
For the wedding ceremony, the tribe paint their bodies and wear feathers to impure the women. They called the sing-sings and they are supposed to imitate the mating rituals of male birds.
44.Sudan: Two To Get Started
Sudan people of the Neur tribe belies that the marriage is not complete until the woman has two children. If she fails to do so, the groom is able to seek divorce.
45.Congo: Don’t Smile
In order for the marriage to be taken seriously, the bride and the groom are not allowed to smile throughout the entire ceremony.
46.Colombia: Candle Light, One, Two and Three
The groom and the bride each have candle and after the rings have been exchanged they light the third candle together. Once the third candle is lit, they blow out their own candle. This symbolizes unity and that they become one body for the rest of their lives.
47.Ukraine: Fresh Homemade Baked Wedding Cake
The wedding cake is given before the wedding and later shared with the wedding party. It is usually made by both families and represents the blessing from the community to the newlywed couple.
48.Mauritius: Gain Weight Much As You Can Before the Day.
It is typical of brides in Mauritius, for brides gain weight before walking down the aisle. A woman with many layers of fat is considered the ideal of feminine beauty and a symbol of a man’s wealth.
49.Israel: Crush A Glass With Your Foot
At the end of wedding ceremony, the groom crushes a glass underfoot. The breaking of the glass symbolizes the spirit of happiness.
50.Belgium: Personalized Handkerchief
One of the most important tradition of Belgium wedding is for the bride to carry a name embroidered handkerchief. After the wedding ceremony, the handkerchief is frames and hung on the wall in a place of honor. The wedding handkerchief is passed from generation to generation and is considered an important family heirloom.
We live in a multi cultural world where it is really fun and learn different ceremonial customs and get to open our eyes to the world rather than living in our own small world. That’s one of many reasons we chose full-time traveling.
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Hope this inspire each of you!
What your wedding tradition in your culture?
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