Unique ideas of different nations for your ideal wedding day
Do you wish to make your wedding a very special and most exclusive occasion? Need interesting and fresh ideas for the most important day of your life but not sure where to look for relevant information? We did a long research on wedding traditions, tips and ideas and would love to share them with you.
Which day of our life is the most exciting, long-awaited and unforgettable? Indeed, it is our wedding! A wedding's shining light can ignite hearts of all those who attend your marriage ceremony.
From as young as 12 years old I began to dream about my future family and my wedding day! I tried to get all possible information about wedding tips and ideas. Very soon my shelves were stacked with wedding cuttings from magazines, adverts, e-cards, copies from books on weddings. Many years passed since that time. Till now this information helped not only me for my the most important day in my life, but to many of my friends and colleagues - for their wedding day. And today I would love to share my homework on weddings with you. Worth-trying wedding ideas from foreign cultures. Surely, it will make your own wedding very unique and really memorable. And here it follows... Let us take a look at weddings in Russia and Ukraine.
Customs of weddings in Russia
Nowadays, Russian weddings come in a variety of different forms. They can contain elements of a traditional Russian wedding and also hints of a European or American-style wedding. The latter have become more and more popular and modern in recent years. True Russian weddings are unique in the fact that they are always lavishly played out! We say "played out," as a Russian wedding ceremony is usually conducted as though it were a theatre spectacle where there is a script and everyone knows their role.
In times gone by, a form of courtship would have taken place to secure the union of the happy couple. By tradition, the groom's parents would ask the bride's parents for their daughter's hand in marriage for their son. Nowadays, this tradition has become practically extinct and only from time to time will the groom ask the bride's parents for their daughter's hand in marriage or request an approval of their union.
As part of the Russian wedding ceremony, people still enjoy the tradition of ransoming the bride. Before the young couple leave to go to the ZAGS (Registry Office), the groom must go to his future wife's house where he will be greeted by friends of the bride, relatives and guests. They organise various fun games for the groom, like, for example, asking him challenging risque questions, persuading him to carry out certain tasks and demanding a ransom for the bride. The groom must fulfil all the tasks, namely, singing, dancing, reciting poetry, solving riddles and various other challenges. Then, as a ransom, he must give out sweets and money to all those who have arranged the obstacles along the way to him winning his bride (in other words, those who have set the groom challenges to prove that he is worthy of his bride.)
There is an age-old tradition that on the day before the wedding the bride will arrange a hen party and invite all her friends who will support and protect her in her new life. It is now also common for the groom to arrange a stag party; a tradition that has been imported from the West. The groom will say goodbye to his bachelor lifestyle whilst in the company of his friends.
After the registration in the ZAGS or the ceremony in the church, the newlyweds and all their guests go to the reception which is usually held in a restaurant, a banqueting hall or at someone's house. By tradition, the young couple is met by the mother of the groom or all the parents who offer them bread and salt. The young couple must then take turns to eat the bread. The person who eats the largest piece of bread will be the head of the household. This equal opportunity ritual between the couple has only been observed recently as before it would have always been the male who would stand at the head of the household.
It is while everyone is sat around the table that all the guests will pass on their good wishes to the couple, raise toasts and offer presents. By tradition, two toddlers will be put in the centre of the room, one dressed in blue to symbolise a boy and the other dressed in pink to symbolise a girl. The guests will then offer sums of money to whichever toddler they choose. The toddler who receives the most money determines the sex of the married couple's first child.
A fundamental component of the Russian wedding is the cries of "gor'ko" where the newlyweds must stand and kiss for as long as possible. All the guests stand round them and count "1, 2, 3... 15.... 20, etc." The longer the young couple can kiss for, the stronger their union will be. The guests always demand that they kiss for as long as possible. Often, the reception can be a tiring experience for the young couple as they have to entertain their guests by this kissing ritual.
According to European tradition, the wedding ends with the bride throwing her bouquet over her head to all the unmarried girls in the crowd. Whoever catches it will become the next bride. After the ceremony has ended, the young couple goes off to their new house or hotel. At this point, the groom must take the bride in his arms and carry her across the threshold; a local custom that indicates the strength of their marriage. As a rule, the young couple then happily journey off into the sunset for their honeymoon.
Given their common Slavic roots and culture, it is not surprising that Ukrainian weddings are very similar to Russian weddings. However, some variations do exist.
On the day of the wedding, the groom's first duty is to pick up his bride from her house. Before he meets his loved one he is met by relatives and friends who will demand a ransom for the bride. This is the most special and exciting part of the whole affair. The groom must complete several tasks in order to demonstrate his strength and intellect. If he fails to complete a task, then he must give out money, sweets and drinks to the guests. The result of his efforts is the possession of his loved one. This tradition remains popular to this day. After the groom's challenges, the young couple will go to the ZAGS (Registry Office) and then the church (if they so choose). A celebration of the events usually follows the registration of the marriage.
In today's world, weddings in Ukraine can be compared with weddings in Europe, where the main ceremony is conducted in prestigious restaurants or big halls.
One of the old customs that is still being practised in today's weddings: guests give a round loaf of brown bread to the young couple. As a rule, the loaf is baked only by those women whose family life has been very successful as it is said to bring good luck to the young couple in their own family life. On the way to the wedding or directly in front of the building where the wedding feast is held, the groom and bride will release two doves.
One of the distinguishing parts of a Ukrainian wedding is that a giltse (a large wreath which is decorated with flowers and ribbons) is placed on the table next to the karavai loaf. This symbolises maidenly beauty and innocence.
On her head, the Ukrainian bride will wear a wreath with different coloured cascading ribbons. At the end of the festivities, the bride will throw the wreath into a crowd of unmarried girls. The person who catches the wreath will become the next bride. This tradition is very similar to the European tradition where the bride throws her bouquet into the crowd. It has been said that the European tradition of throwing a bouquet into the crowd came from the Ukrainian tradition of throwing wreathes, however, nowadays Ukrainian weddings usually conform to European traditions.
The host of the occasions will organise fun games, poems and little ditties. Guests usually give the couple useful, practical gifts, which will be helpful to the couple in their married life. Accepting the gifts is no easy matter. It is a national wedding custom that requires both, bride and groom, to unpack each and every gift immediately in the presence of the giver. They must unwrap the present, study it and then express their gratitude to the guest. The money usually goes to the groom, and other items and flowers go to the bride.
Without any doubt, some wedding traditions are intertwined and interrelated in all cultures. There is always room for improvement in preparation for the moment of your dream - wedding day. Do your own research, share ideas with others, send me your own wedding tips - it will assist us all. Our efforts can make a difference to make wedding ceremonies better, brighter, more exclusive and worthy to be proud of.
Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Lilia offers exclusive articles on marriages and weddings, co-authored by her and Alice. How to entertain guests and make your wedding unforgettable: Get free unique wedding ideas here=> in wedding portal MarryMeCity