Are Bridal Bouquet Traditions Changing?
For years and years brides have been following the tradition of throwing their lovely wedding bouquet into the air to be grabbed and tousled by single female guests at her wedding reception. Worse, she had her garter removed by her groom and tossed to single men at the reception or auctioned off. (Note: The wise bride wore the garter below her knee.) These customs came from European cousins who had in their history the tradition of chasing the bride to grab a piece of her clothing for good luck.
While the sentiment was nice, the practice wasn’t, so brides began throwing flowers from the bouquet to the crowd chasing them in the hope that would slow them down enough for her to escape with garments intact. The modern version of throwing the bouquet and/or garter says that the person who catches the item will be the next to marry – although not necessarily to each other.
The good news is that tradition is changing. Today’s bride often chooses to present her bouquet to her grandparents or to the couple at the wedding who has been married the longest. Some brides have the bouquet constructed with a removable centerpiece that is used on the bridal table at the reception. Other brides have a smaller version of the bridal bouquet – a tossing bouquet if you will – for those areas that still practice this tradition. Very few brides ask for pictures of the groom removing the garter for her photo album. Many of those shots are not very flattering and best not considered. Besides, most brides want to keep their wedding garter and instead provide a special tossing garter for those areas where it is still expected.
One new version in some areas is to have the attendants sign the bottoms of the shoes worn by the bride and groom. Whomever’s name is left legible on the soles of the shoes after a night of dancing is likely to marry next.
The important part of considering traditional practices is your comfort level. If it makes you uncomfortable or feel silly, don’t do it. Instead, consider starting new traditions or finding ways to make old traditions your own. We can help with ideas to put your personal touch on “something old.”
For more ideas call (508) 916-2443 or email [email protected]