Why? Because it's a tradition

Published 5:44 am Monday, November 8, 2004

By Staff
I had resolved to not use this column space for any more ramblings about my impending nuptials, but I'm sure any former bride would agree -- three weeks before your wedding, your brain turns to buttercream frosting, and it's impossible to think of anything other than The Day.
At least I can be educational and tell you what I've learned about some common wedding traditions in this planning process.
Something old, something new…
…something borrowed, something blue, and a sixpence in her shoe! Did you know about that last part? I didn't either, but my future mother-in-law informed me, and she's also sharing with me the sixpence she carried in her shoe when she married nearly 40 years ago in Germany.
Presumably, something old represents continuity, something new indicates optimism for the future, something borrowed represents borrowed happiness, and something blue signifies fidelity. The sixpence must bring wealth, and I won't argue with that!
No peeking!
Probably one of the most commonly observed wedding traditions is not allowing the groom to see the bride on the day of the wedding.
If anything is commonly considered "bad luck," you can bet I'll avoid doing it, but now at least I know why that superstition originated.
I've read that in some foreign place some number of years ago, brides and grooms never laid eyes on each other until the wedding. The bride's family would arrange the marriage with the groom's family and then hide the bride until the ceremony so the groom wouldn't be disappointed and call the whole thing off.
I'm certain you could wrap me in black garbage bags and rub mud in my hair and Nicholas would still marry me, but I'm not taking any chances. I'm terrible at keeping secrets, but somehow I've made it this far without even discussing with him what color my dress is. When The Day gets here, I'm going to hide from the daylight behind locked doors until it's time for the ceremony.
I wonder if any bride has ever called the wedding off because the groom accidentally saw her before the wedding?
The garter toss
According to some sources I've read, brides would sometimes be nearly mauled by wedding guests, ripping parts of her dress and veil from her. Supposedly, the tradition to throw the garter began as a way to appease guests and keep the bride's clothes intact.
I have two garters for my ceremony. The first is a traditional one made by my mother (with blue ribbon, of course), and I will keep that one.
We acquired the second garter sort of unexpectedly. At the wedding of my best friend last month, Nick caught the garter, and I decided if it was okay with her, I would wear it and toss it at my wedding too. She loved the idea.
Let it rain
I've always heard that it's good luck to have rain on your wedding day. I don't know the origin of that superstition, but I suspect it was made up to console panicked brides when the weather doesn't cooperate.
I am having a garden ceremony, but I haven't spent a whole lot of time worrying about the weather.
We had a Plan B before Ivan came through and tore the roof off of the covered area I wanted to use.
Now I think if it starts raining on The Day, I'll just grin and ask everyone to accept the fact that they're going to get wet.

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