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Wedding traditions have been around for hundreds of years, some of which still are around today, well, variations of them, and their meanings and purposes have been lost. For example, did you know that a bride stands to the left of the groom so he could draw his sword if he needed to defend his bride or that bouquets were originally used to mask body odour! Obviously things evolve over time (like the requirement to wash regularly, thank God!) and trends come and go but some stick around for years. Some fall by the way side for good reason, while others die out when they really shouldn’t have.
I think it’s a real shame that some of the old-fashioned traditions have disappeared from the modern wedding celebrations we all know today which is probably because people just don’t know about them.
Here I have outlined ten which I think should make a welcome comeback and add something a little special to your day.
Silver Sixpence in the bride’s shoe
There are a few variations of this one from around the globe and for good reason. In the UK the tradition is for the bride’s father to place a silver sixpence in her shoe as a good luck gesture wishing her prosperity, love and happiness in her marriage. What a beautiful sentiment and an amazing photo op!
The Welsh Love Spoon
Welsh love spoons would be hand carved from wood by young men as a token of their love and to show their intentions of courting the recipient. The spoon would be carved with various symbols representing different meanings; a Celtic knot would show that the intention was that they would be together forever, a horseshoe hoping for good luck and a key to symbolise that he was giving her his heart. Some say that if the feelings were not reciprocated then she would snap the spoon, a little brutal after all that hard work but it would definitely get the message across!
Weddings on a weekday
In years gone by, it was actually a tradition for weddings to take place on a weekday, not on a Friday or Saturday. This will be good news if you don’t want to wait months, if not years, to get married at your favourite venue.
There was even a rhyme which goes:
“Monday for health,
Tuesday for wealth,
Wednesday best of all.
Thursday for losses,
Friday for crosses,
Saturday for no luck at all.”
If your wedding is on a Saturday, don’t panic, I’m sure it’ll be fine!
The honeymoon spend was a priority
Probably the biggest expense these days is the venue, food and drink. However in times of old, such expense wasn’t deemed a priority for couples getting married, which left them with the cash to splash on a fabulous honeymoon. Just imagine the places you could go?
A month long honeymoon
In the Good Old Days not only did couples fork out for their honeymoon, they would go for an entire month! Granted, they had to spend most of their time drinking mead (a fermented wine made with honey), but remove that from the equation and this tradition is one that would go down well with modern newlyweds, although you may have to be extra nice to your boss to get the time of work.
Freezing the top tier of the cake
Imagine spending a considerable amount of money on a beautifully sculpted and delicious cake that you miss out on. Why not bring back the tradition of old by freezing the top tier so you can enjoy the cakey goodness all to yourself. It was often eaten by the couple on their first anniversary – Yum!
Have your cake and more!
On the subject of cake, in Victorian Britain, it was customary to not only serve a wedding cake, but also a groom’s and bridesmaid’s cake (for the groomsmen and bridesmaid respectively).
Whereas the wedding cake would usually be vanilla, the groomsmen and bridesmaids would have the freedom from a wide variety of flavours. It goes without saying that the more cake, the happier and fuller the guests!
Nowadays, newlyweds usually hang around all evening to attend the wedding party. But why not break the mould and bring back the old tradition of sending them off in a car with ‘Just Married’ signs and tins cans clanking around?
There’s something special and truly timeless about waving goodbye to the bride and groom as they swan off for their next big adventure.
Finding a lucky charm
Dating back to Victorian times, it was common tradition to place charms inside the wedding cake with a ribbon attached to the end. Guests would take turn to pull them out of the cake in a tradition simply known as ‘cake pull’ before the delicious cake was sliced and served.
What better way to get your guests involved in your special day?
Writing a letter to your loved one
I adore this one – why don’t we do this anymore?! It was once standard for the bride and groom to write a love letter to each other which would be placed in a box and only opened on their first wedding anniversary. So romantic!
I absolutely love wedding traditions because they often have such lovely meanings behind them, and bringing back these timeless customs will make any wedding a truly memorable one.
Have you got any other unique traditions or trends you’d like to incorporate into your wedding day? I’d love to hear about them. Get in touch today and let’s make them happen!