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Wedding Traditions From Around the World

August 6, 2018

So, you want to stage a wedding that’s symbolically rich and spiritually meaningful? Look into the marriage traditions of your families’ ethnic background, or borrow some from a faraway land.

Chic Flowers Company found a few cultural customs that have tons of universal appeal — any of these ideas will turn a same-old, same-old celebration into something spectacular.

1. Henna Party

The day before the wedding, brides from India, Morocco and some Middle Eastern nations gather their female relatives and close girlfriends for a “henna party.” During this intimate ritual, henna, a plant-derived dye mixture, is applied to the bride’s hands and feet in swirling floral patterns. The henna dries into an exotic, red temporary “tattoo” that is said to protect the bride from evil spirits. It might be fun to incorporate henna as part of your bridal shower or luncheon. 

 

2. Flower Power

Historically, herbs, flowers and foliage with symbolic meanings have played important roles in weddings around the world. Why not use some of them in your bouquets and centerpieces? For instance, since the Victorian era, rosemary has been considered a symbol of loyalty and remembrance throughout Europe and the U.S. Ivy (the Greeks have been fans since ancient times) and orange blossoms (held dear by brides from Spain) represent eternal love. In Austria, myrtle is a symbol of life and fertility. Meanwhile, marigolds are a staple at Indian weddings, and the Dutch like lavender—it’s a good luck charm.

 

3. "Tying" the Knot

Many Asian couples, as well as folks with a Celtic background, practice a "handfasting," in which the officiant binds or wraps the bride's and groom's hands together (usually with ribbon or cloth) to symbolize the joining of families and the blending of cultures. It can also express the pure, simple beauty of two souls coming together for eternity.

 

4. Scarlet Fever

In China, India and other Asian countries, the color red symbolizes good luck and prosperity. Some Asian brides wear an elaborate wedding gown of embroidered red silk. Have a traditional white dress? Tie a crimson silk taffeta sash around your waist or wear a dark-red velvet ribbon as a necklace. Or, ask our San Diego Wedding Florist to feature red in your reception décor, using red amaryllis and hibiscus flowers, red paper lanterns or candy-striped table linens.

 

5. Vive La Croquembouche!

Instead of a traditional wedding cake, serve up a croquembouche. This traditional French wedding dessert is a towering stack of profiteroles (cream-filled pastry puffs) that are held together with a yummy caramel glaze. The pastries are insanely delicious; plus, the confection is a feast for the eyes.

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