Each country has their own traditions as part of their culture, and it is the same for weddings too. They can bring a personal touch to your wedding, especially if you’re getting married overseas as you can bring a part of your home country’s culture to your wedding using such wedding traditions. If you are looking to incorporate traditions into your wedding, keep reading as we have put together a list of wedding traditions by country, let’s begin!
In Spain there are several traditions that are still somewhat commonplace today. Firstly, rice is thrown like confetti on the couple to wish them prosperity and fertility, although rice is still sometimes used, dried petals are becoming a popular choice now.
Another tradition in Spain comes in the form of the “Arras”, which is the giving of 13 coins either between the newlyweds or just from the groom to the bride to symbolise their commitment to sharing their possessions in the marriage – this tradition usually takes place during religious ceremonies.
In France, traditional weddings don’t have bridesmaids and groomsmen, but they do have flower girls and page boys which are usually younger children, who do things such as hold the train of the wedding dress or hold the rings.
It is also not custom to have a traditional wedding cake, instead they have a croquembouche which is like a pyramid shaped tower of profiteroles.
During German weddings, the “Polterabend” is a common tradition. This is a party which takes place the night before the wedding where plates are smashed to bring good luck to the bride.
In England, it is tradition for the bride to wear “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.” Often these can be incorporated into the same thing, for example borrowing an old relative’s necklace which has a blue gem in it, and traditionally the wedding dress or wedding shoes represent something new, but this is not always the case – there are lots of different ways of representing this tradition.
In Italy, it is tradition for the groom to buy the bride’s bouquet as a last gift before they marry. The bride can still choose the bouquet to ensure it adheres to the wedding aesthetics, but the groom pays for it.
Another Italian wedding tradition is that if the bride is wearing garters, the groom will remove the garter from the right leg and throw it into the crowd of guests – this is a similar tradition to a bride throwing her bouquet.
In Greek weddings it is traditional to gift sugar coated almonds to the bride and groom. The sugar on the almond is said to represent the sweetness of marriage, the white colour of the almond represents purity and the egg shape of the almond personifies fertility.
In Greece it is also tradition for the priest to place crowns on the heads of the bride and groom during the ceremony if it takes place in the church.
There are many Russian wedding traditions. A fun one is the kidnapping of the bride by her parents before the wedding: the groom must complete a set of activities before he gets to marry her as a ransom, if he fails any he must compensate by paying money or giving chocolates and flowers to the bridal party.
To decide when and where the marriage will take place, the couple will consult the zodiac signs and let the stars tell them when the best time to get married will be for the best luck. Unlike in western tradition, Indian brides tend to wear red outfits with lots of decoration and henna in floral patterns on their hands and feet.
Here is a list of some popular wedding traditions around the world, do you recognise any from your own country?
If you wish to know more about wedding traditions, or to let us help you incorporate cultural traditions into your wedding you can write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.