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Wedding Planning: Wedding Traditions You Need To Know

If you follow wedding traditions, the theory goes, you will find eternal joy with your soulmate. When love and happiness ever after are the outcomes, it's usually a win-win for the newly wedded couple. So use this list of wedding traditions and superstitions for informational purposes, and celebrate your day, your way!

Good & Bad Luck Superstitions

  • Couples are not allowed to see each other before their wedding ceremony during the time of arranged marriages, so that the partners wouldn't be able to find each other unattractive and call off the wedding.
  • The groom carries the bride across the threshold of the home to bravely protect her from evil spirits lurking below.
  • Bells are an important part of Irish wedding tradition, as its said they keep evil spirts away.

Engagement Rings & Wedding Traditions

  • Engagement and wedding rings are worn on the fourth finger of the left hand because it was once thought that a vein in that finger led directly to the heart.
  • In the symbolic language of jewels, a sapphire in a wedding ring means marital happiness.
  • Watch out, ring bearer and best man! If the wedding rings are dropped, it's thought that evil spirts will be released.

Wedding Fashion Traditions and Superstitions

  • Queen Victoria started the Western world's white wedding dress trend in 1840—before then, brides simply wore their best dress. A white wedding dress is considered a symbol of purity.
  • Ancient Greeks and Romans thought the wedding veil protected the bride from evil spirits. Brides have worn veils ever since.
  • Brides carry or wear something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue on their wedding day. The "something old" symbolizes ties to the past; "something new" represents a bright future ahead; "something borrowed" is a transfer of happiness from a long-married couple to the newlyweds; "something blue" is a symbol of purity.

Wedding Ceremony and Wedding Reception Traditions

  •  In many cultures around the world—including Celtic, Hindu and Egyptian weddings—the hands of a bride and groom are literally tied together to demonstrate the couple's commitment to each other and their new bond as a married couple (giving us the popular phrase "tying the knot").
  • The bouquet toss comes from England, where female guests used to try to rip pieces of the bride's wedding gown and bouquet for good luck. This turned into the bouquet toss, where the bride tosses her bouquet to single female guests—the one who catches it is considered the next to marry. The garter toss comes from a similar origin—the bride wore a garter that she would toss to appease the waiting crowd, rather than have guests try to rip her clothing!


Information provided by: The Knot