Canadian wedding traditions
Traditional Canadian weddings take place in a church, where family and friends are invited. Here comes the best man, flower girls, exchanging vows and rings, and the wedding music . The ceremony is conducted by the priest.
At the end of the ceremony it is traditional for the priest to ask if anyone present knows of any just cause why this man and this woman may not be legally married. Getting no response the priest asks the couple to exchange wedding rings and then the couple is pronounced husband and wife. Traditionally the newlyweds kiss to seal their union.
As the couple leaves the church, they are showered with rice or wheat - symbols of fertility. Then the couple is taken home, restaurant or other wedding locations, where a wedding reception takes place.
Following the tradition, the couple goes on a honeymoon. The honeymoon may last from several days to two or more months. Part of the money for the honeymoon is gathered in a wedding wheel, another Canadian wedding tradition . The guests form two lines, and they pay a dollar or more to dance with the newlyweds.
While most weddings are planned and elaborate, there are yet many weddings that are impromptu, so to say informal weddings, just planned on the spur of the moment.
To take care of such a short-notice informal wedding, there are informal wedding dresses that serve the purpose, and are easily available off the rack.
Apart from the last-minute-suddenly-planned weddings, some people prefer to opt for the less expensive, informal wedding dresses.
They would rather purchase more affordable wedding gown than spend a fortune, wearing the exquisite and expensive dress just once in their lifetime. There is a third category opting for informal wedding dresses.
They are the ones who just simply prefer to be different. They would rather implement a unique wedding idea than worry about those flowing lace and silk.
"Something old" symbolizes a link to the bride?s family and the past. A family heirloom, such as a piece of antique jewelry or a family member?s wedding dress can represent the old object. Or, a bride can sew lace or ribbon into the hem of her dress.
"Something new" represents good fortune and success in the bride?s new life. A bride can wear a new string of pearls, or use the wedding gown as the new item.
"Something borrowed" symbolizes the love and support of family and friends. A borrowed object can be, for example, a lace handkerchief from a happily married friend.
"Something blue" is an object that symbolizes faithfulness and loyalty. Brides usually use a blue ribbon. ?A Silver Sixpence in Her Shoe? is a blessing for wealth.
Any silver coin makes a sufficient substitute for a sixpence coin that is difficult to find due to its being in circulation till 1971.
Now we shall go further and see where some wedding traditions come from.
The bridal shower. Originally, it intended to strengthen the friendships between the bride and her female friends.
In the 1890s it evolved into an occasion for friends to present the bride-to-be with small gifts. The gifts were placed in a parasol, which was opened above the brides head, allowing the gifts to ?shower? down on her.
Bridal Party. This tradition stems from the Anglo-Saxon custom of a groom using ?Brides knights? to ensure that the bride got to the ceremony and then back to her husband?s home without being attacked and the dowry stolen.
The Veil. In ancient times the broom didn?t see the bride until the wedding ceremony .
It was thought that if the broom had seen the bride before the ceremony was over and didn?t like her, he might refuse to get married. So the veil was not lifted until after the ceremony. Kissing the bride.
In Roman times kissing was a legal bond that sealed the marriage. The groom?s Cake. A piece of the cake was taken home by each guest as a memento of the wedding.
It was also believed that if a woman slept with a piece of the groom?s cake under her pillow, she would dream about the man she would marry.
Honeymoon. Newly married couples would drink a fermented wine made from mead and honey for a month (moon) following their wedding.
All these traditions are applied to a so-called formal or traditional wedding, when the bride is in white and is tossing the bouquet, the broom - in black, and the guests are throwing the birdseed.
A traditional Canadian wedding can be elaborate and time-consuming, as many brides today opt to have a professional wedding planner to take care of the thousand-and-one details of the glorious day.
A traditional Canadian wedding is fairly large and elaborate affair, especially when it is the first wedding for the bride.
Prior to the wedding itself, it is traditional for the Maid of Honor to throw a bridal shower as part of the wedding ceremonies. During the bridal shower the bride-to-be will receive small gifts, often of a humorous nature.