Bridal Traditions around the World

Today I would like to look at the really fascinating subject of Bridal Traditions around the world.

Every bride is different, the look and feel of your wedding should be unique and indicative of your taste and style.

This is especially true depending on where you are in the world.

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If you’re in the U.K or the U.S. that may traditionally mean a white formal dress whereas in China that may mean a red dress.

The colors, activities and attire that make up a wedding day vary greatly from country to country.

In most instances, the bride is the center of the wedding day.

However, every country and culture has their own way of celebrating the bride, here are some of the most unique experiences brides have from around the world:

 

India

There are many aspects that consist an Indian wedding.

One of the most beautiful is the Mehndi ki raat which usually occurs a day before the exchange of vows.

It involves drawing elaborate decorations on the bride’s hands and feet with henna.

The ornate patterns are meant to show, among other things, the strength of the bond between a man and wife.

 

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Japan

Although many brides in Japan choose to go the more modern Western-style of wedding ceremonies, there are still many brides that choose the traditional shinto wedding.

The traditional shinto wedding of Japan requires not only that the bride wear a white kimono but that she be painted white as well from head to do, to visibly declare her maiden status to the gods.

Along with the kimono, brides wear headgear to symbolize their intention to be a gentle and obedient wife.

 

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The United Arab Emirates

In the United Arab Emirates, the tradition of pampering the bride before her wedding goes to new lengths as she is anointed with perfumes, rubbed with cleaning creams, and has her hair washed with extracts of amber and jasmine.

Her groom offers her fine pieces of jewelry, and perfumes.

Traditionally, the bride is not seen for forty days prior to her wedding while she rests at home.

The wedding festivities are about a week long, and last until the night of the wedding.

During that week, there is henna, traditional music and many celebrations in anticipation for the big day.

 

Eastern Europe

Many countries in Eastern Europe celebrate weddings in a similar fashion to that of Western Europe with the exception that in these countries the religious ceremony is Orthodox Christian instead of Catholic or Protestant.

This lends new meaning to the use of a bride’s veil. It is removed once the vows have been exchanged and is replaced by a babushka, symbolizing the bride’s transformation from a girl into a woman.

 

China

Wedding traditions have changed in China as the country has modernized.

Red is still considered a lucky color and is still worn by the bride. But now it is only one of at least three gowns she must wear the day of the ceremony.

And this will most likely be during the traditional tea ceremony which comes after the exchange of vows, where the bride wears a conventional gown, and before she wishes her guests goodnight for the evening wearing a Song Ke, or cocktail dress.

 

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Ethiopia

In festive tradition, the bridegroom is brought to the bride’s home by his groomsmen where they find the bridesmaids waiting and blocking the entrance.

Here they have what can only be described as a sing-off as each party expounds the virtues of the bride or groom.

 

Italy

A traditional wedding in Italy looks a lot like what we have come to expect of a wedding.

However, this is where many of the customs have come from that we tend to overlook.

The bridesmaids and the veil being essential, since Roman times, to ward off evil demons and used to keep  the bride virtuous.

 

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Thailand

It’s still a fashion in some rural areas of Thailand to prepare a bridal bed.

This includes getting pointers on your honeymoon night from an old married couple.

It makes sense; seeing as how long they’ve been married, they probably would have some very good advice for any two newlyweds.

 

And last but not least a Bridal Tradition from:

 

Scotland 

Not so common now but feet washing is an old tradition sometimes still carried out.

The night before the Wedding the Bride sits in a chair while an old woman washes and dries her feet. This is supposed to symbolise good fortune.

 

While love is the universal reason why we wed, the way we get married and the Bridal traditions and Wedding traditions we have vary all around the globe, and its so fascinating to learn about how other cultures celebrate their union too.

 

Author Credit:  Uma Campbell is a freelance writer from Southern California. She loves writing about different cultures around the world.

 

More about ALISON TINLIN

UK Wedding Blogger with an eclectic style based in Glasgow

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