Four Wedding Traditions that Never Go out of Style
While many wedding fads come and go, it’s quite likely that a number of timeless wedding traditions will be a part of your big day.
From the exchanging of wedding rings to sending off rituals, there are many wedding traditions that have developed “staying power,” so to speak. What’s important to remember is that as you plan your wedding, it is completely up to you which wedding traditions you decide to keep; even then, you may opt to use your creativity to offer a new take on some timeless traditions.
Some of the following wedding traditions have been around for ages—and they don’t seem to be going anywhere soon. Read on to familiarize yourself with four timeless traditions you may opt to make a part of your big day.
Wedding rings have been worn through the centuries, and may even have their roots in ancient Egyptian culture when they took the form of plant materials like reeds and grass.
It’s tradition to wear the wedding rings on the third finger on the left hand, which Roman and European cultures adopted because of a belief that the vein in that finger ran directly to the heart.
Through the years, wedding rings have been made from silver, gold, platinum, and even tungsten. Modern couples today can opt for wedding rings that fit their personalities as individuals. While the materials used to make these items may change, the symbolism of lasting love and commitment is something understood through the ages.
Wearing a Wedding Veil
Veils have been a force in wedding fashions for more than 200 years, dating back to Queen Victoria’s wedding in 1840. While many women no longer opt to wear the blusher, the translucent material draped over the front of the face, veils are still worn, more so for their beauty than anything else.
This piece of the wedding attire that first began as a sign of a woman’s chastity has evolved into a fashion all its own, with multiple varieties, including:
- Flyaway veils (end at the shoulder)
- Fingertip veils (end at the waist)
- Sweep veils (end at the floor)
- Chapel veils (nine feet)
- Cathedral veils (twelve feet)
The First Wedding Dance
This timeless wedding tradition—meant to symbolize how the couple will glide their way through life—can be tweaked to suit your own tastes. During this time, when all eyes are on the both of you as bride and groom, you may opt for a traditional first dance accompanied by a ballad or slow-tempo love song, or perhaps you want something a little off the beaten path, like a fully choreographed dance routine. Imagine the cheers and applause you’ll get from guests when you break out into some unexpected moves.
In either case, if you think about special moments in your relationship, you may recall a song that was playing at the time. For instance, was there a specific song playing when he proposed? Is there a song from your dating days that brings a smile to both of you–perhaps Track One on the first SoundCloud or Youtube mix you exchanged? What about a sweet tune from a band that you saw together in concert during your courtship? Those may be songs you’ll want to consider when making your first dance decisions.
Other fun new takes on this tradition include dancing your way onto the floor and playing slide show photos and even the song’s lyrics during the dance.
Throwing Rice at Weddings
Showering the happy couple with rice is a longstanding tradition, not just in the United States, but also around the world. It symbolizes a wish for fertility and good fortune for couples; even the kiddos can have fun with this one. Traditionally, this was done after the wedding ceremony, but more and more couples today opt for their guests to throw rice as a final sendoff, after the reception.
Most recently, this tradition has taken a bit of a twist with bubbles, birdseed confetti, or noisemakers in place of rice. Or you could draw inspiration from Italy, where candy and nuts are thrown, or France, where they throw wheat.
Be sure you check with the wedding venue to ensure there are no rules against your chosen “throwing” material–many churches ban rice or confetti because of the messy cleanup involved. Contrary to the old wives’ tale, though, rice does not cause harm to birds.
Whatever the traditions, your wedding day is your opportunity to set the tone for your event and marriage. Like everything about the ceremony, you can choose what aspects to include, but know that you can’t go wrong with any of the classics!