Monday, March 23, 2009

Story Telling: Wedding Traditions, Part One

          Here at Story Photographers we love a good story- who doesn’t?!  We also like to think outside of the box- question traditions.  So I did a little research to figure out just where do some of these wedding activities come from that so many of us participate in.  Here is round one- more coming this week!

A Bridal Shower:

The idea of a bridal shower began in Holland.  If the bride's father did not like her choice in a groom, he could choose to withhold her dowry.  If this happened then the bride's friends would shower her with gifts to make up for the dowry.  With those gifts she would then be allowed to marry the groom-to-be.


The Bride Carrying Flowers:

Back in ancient times the bride carried strong smelling herbs and spices in order to drive away evil spirits, sickness, and bad luck.  Then in Roman times the tradition expanded to include a garland of flowers around the bride and groom that signified new life and fertility.  A bouquet of flowers symbolized a woman in bloom and during Victorian times each type of flower was given symbolic meaning. 


Tossing the Bouquet:

This tradition seems to have started in England hundreds of years ago.  Anything worn by the bride was considered good luck, so the other women at the wedding would try to rip pieces of the bride's dress and flowers in order to obtain her same good luck in finding a man.  It was also seen as a distraction for the crowd so that the bride and groom could get away.  Thank goodness the dress ripping part is no longer a tradition! 


The Groom's Lapel Flower:

There was a medieval tradition that a Knight should wear his lady's colors as a declaration of his love, so in a wedding he would wear a flower from her bouquet. 


The Tiered Wedding Cake:

The origin of the tiered wedding cake comes to us from Anglo-Saxon times.  Guests would bring small cakes to the wedding and stack them on top of each other.  Picking up on the idea, a French baker created a cake in the shape of the small cakes and covered it in frosting. 

** I checked multiple resources for the information I have presented here.  There are some variations in explanations, so I tried to pick the most frequently repeated.  


jinglchelle said...

so cool!

thanks for the info, it's much cooler when you know WHY people do things :)

Unique Wedding Cakes said...

Thanks for all the background information about the traditions of weddings. I never new all these great facts.

Thanks for sharing!


Ashley and David said...

Thanks for saying hey, Timothy. I am sure you appreciated the info about the tiered wedding cake :)

Check back for more fun info!


Paul said...

Speaking of cakes...
We were actually playing with the idea of having some of the mom's bring in different cakes, but were worried about some not finding it to be "traditional"....
turns out it was traditional before "traditional"!