Have weddings changed that much?
While it is true that weddings follow trends, there are some traditions that date back thousands of years. The wedding ring as a symbol of eternity has been around since Egyptian times. A band of hemp or rush was worn on the third finger of the left as it was believed that the vein in this finger led directly to the heart.
Romans created the bridal party and the wedding veil. It is thought that the veil protected the bride from evil spirits and the bridesmaids and groom were to act as bodyguards against jealous demons. What has changed is the practice in the Middle Ages of guests tearing the bride’s dress and taking a piece. With the beautiful and costly dresses worn today, not many people would appreciate this tradition. It is thought that the act of tossing a bouquet was an alternative to the dress ripping!
The diamond ring entered the wedding tradition during the Renaissance period. Wedding vows that we use today were first used by the Anglican Church in 1500’s and a hundred years later the European nobility brought a box of sugared almonds to the wedding and this was the birth of wedding favours. Queen Victoria made the white wedding dress popular and it was also this monarch who introduced fresh flowers into a bridal bouquet when previously brides had carried dried herbs to ward off evil spirits.
One of the major changes is that weddings were probably easier to plan in the past as there were limited choices as to what was available. Colour schemes were unheard of, everything was white apart from the bridesmaids and you were likely to be photographed by the only photographer in your town. The Mother-in-law organised the party which would take place in the late afternoon after a church ceremony and the father of the bride paid for it all. There was no opportunity for bespoke or unique ideas like handmade wedding invitations. For more information visit https://www.looneylizardcreations.co.uk/handmade-invitations/
During the afternoon, the bride would change into her smart ‘going away’ outfit and guests would wave off the happy couple as they departed for their honeymoon.
Nowadays the day has cost so much that the bride and groom stay and celebrate the whole day with their guests. These days the sheer choice of wedding services is staggering. As well as the wealth of information available online, there are wedding shows, magazines and programs. The choice of venues has continued to grow from a church to a boat, hotel, beach, restaurant, underwater or even on a mountain. Colour schemes, themes, flowers, entertainment and favours are all on the to-do list for brides to be these days.