Malay wedding customs
A Malay wedding ceremony spreads over two days, beginning with the akad nikah ceremony on the first day. The groom signs the marriage contract and agrees to provide the bride with a mas kahwin (dowry). After that, their hands are dyed with henna during the berinai besar ceremony. The bride's hair is also trimmed or her eyebrows shaped by a beautician known as the mak andam. On the second day, the bride is with her family and friends with musicians and bunga manggar or palm blossom carriers at the bride's house. At the house they are greeted with sprinkling of yellow rice and scented water.
wife. If he feels he can feed more than one wife, he may have additional wives.
Bengali wedding customs
Bengali wedding refers to both Muslim and Hindu weddings in Bangladesh and West Bengal. Although Muslim and Hindu marriages have their distinctive religious rituals, there are many common cultural rituals in marriages across religion among Bengali people.
In France, only civil weddings are legally recognized (due to the concept of laïcité), they are performed in the town hall by the mayor (or another civil servant acting on his/her behalf). At least one of the spouses must reside in the town where the ceremony takes place. Since many people choose to also have a religious wedding, the religious ceremony often takes place immediately after the civil one. Town halls often offer a more elaborate ceremony for couples who do not wish to marry religiously.
If the two ceremonies take place separately, the civil one will usually include close family and witnesses. Once the civil ceremony is complete, the couple will receive a livret de famille, a booklet where a copy of the marriage certificate is recorded. This is an official document and, should the couple have children, each child's birth certificate will be recorded in the livret de famille too. The civil ceremony in France is free of charge.
In smaller French towns, the groom may meet his fiancée at her home on the day of the wedding and escort her to the chapel where the ceremony is being held. As the couple proceeds to the chapel, children will stretch long white ribbons across the road which the bride will cut as she passes.
At the chapel, the bride and groom are seated on two red velvet chairs underneath a silk canopy called a carre. Laurel leaves may be scattered across their paths when they exit the chapel. Sometimes small coins are also tossed for the children to gather.
At the reception, the couple customarily uses a toasting cup called a Coupe de Mariage. The origin of giving this toast began in France, when a small piece of toast was literally dropped into the couple's wine to ensure a healthy life. The couple would lift their glass to "a toast", as is common in Western culture today.
Some couples choose to serve a croquembouche instead of a wedding cake. This dessert is a pyramid of crème-filled pastry puffs, drizzled with a caramel glaze.
At a more boisterous wedding, tradition involves continuing the celebration until very late at night. After the reception, those invited to the wedding will gather outside the newlyweds' window and bang pots and pans; this is called a shivaree. They are then invited into the house for some more drinks in the couple's honor, after which the couple is finally allowed to be alone for their first night together as husband and wife. This practice spread throughout France as a way to celebrate special occasions. Decorative replicas of these special sabres can be purchased from artisans in Lyon, (the French capital of cutlery).
In some parts of Italy, a party, known as a Serenade, is thrown outside of the bride's home by the groom. His family and friends come and wait for the bride, entertaining themselves until she appears. The groom then sings to his bride to further seduce her. Once his song is sung, the party ends.
The day of the wedding, the groomsmen try their hardest to make the groom as uncomfortable as possible by saying things like "Maybe she forgot where the church is".
It is also traditional for the grooms family to give a dowry to the bride and to provide the engagement ring. The bride's family is then responsible for receiving the guests of the wedding in their home for a reception afterward.
The color green is very important in the Italian wedding. In Italy, the tradition of something blue is replaced with something green. This color brings good luck to the married couple. The veil and bridesmaids also were important in an Italian wedding. The tradition began in Ancient Rome when the veil was used to hide the bride from any spirits that would corrupt her and the bridesmaids were to wear similar outfits so that the evil spirits were further confused.
An old Roman custom was that brides threw nuts at rejected suitors as they left the ceremony.
After dessert, more dancing commences, gifts are given, and the guests eventually begin to leave. In Southern Italy, as the guests leave, they hand envelopes of money to the bride and groom, who return the gift with a wedding favor or bomboniere, a small token of appreciation.
Filipino wedding customs
The groom usually wears the Barong Tagalog during the wedding, along with the male attendants, though nowadays the wealthy opt to don Western attire such as a tuxedo. Weddings held within the same year by two siblings, usually sisters, called Sukob are frowned upon as it is regarded as bad luck. Some hold it that the wedding rings dropping to the ground is a portent of bad luck (this is usually said to the ring bearer to ensure that the child is careful in handling the rings). Money, in the form of paper bills, is sometimes taped or pinned to the groom and bride's dress during their first dance.
Indian wedding customs
Indian weddings take anywhere from five minutes to several days, depending on region, religion, and a variety of other factors. Due to the diversity of Indian culture, the wedding style, ceremony and rituals may vary greatly amongst various states, regions, religions and castes. While the Christians of India usually follow a more or less Western wedding ceremony, the Indian Hindus, Muslims, Jains and Sikhs follow traditions quite different from the West. In certain regions, it is quite common that during the traditional wedding days, there would be a tilak ceremony (where the groom is anointed on his forehead), a ceremony for adorning the bride's hand and feet with henna (called mehendi) accompanied by Ladies' Sangeet (music and dance), and many other pre-wedding ceremonies. Another important ceremony followed in certain areas is the "Haldi" program where the bride and the groom are anointed with turmeric paste. All of the close relatives make sure that they have anointed the couple with turmeric. In certain regions, on the day of the wedding proper, the Bridegroom, his friends and relatives come singing and dancing to the wedding site in a procession called baraat, and then the religious rituals take place to solemnize the wedding, according to the religion of the couple. While the groom may wear traditional Sherwani or dhoti or Western suit, or some other local costume, his face, in certain regions, is usually veiled with a mini-curtain of flowers called sehra. In certain regions, the bride (Hindu or Muslim) always wears red clothes, never white because white symbolizes widowhood in Indian culture. In Southern and Eastern states the bride usually wears a red Sari, but in northern and central states the preferred garment is a decorated skirt-blouse and veil called lehenga. After the solemnization of marriage, the bride departs with her husband. This is a very sad event for the bride's relatives because traditionally she is supposed to permanently "break-off" her relations with her blood relatives to join her husband's family. Among Christians in the state of Kerala, the bridegroom departs with the bride's family. The wedding may be followed by a "reception" by the groom's parents at the groom's place. While gifts and money to the couple are commonly given, the traditional dowry from the bride's parents to the couple is now officially forbidden by law.
Japanese wedding customs
Japanese customs fall into two categories: traditional Shinto ceremonies, and modern Western-style ceremonies. In either case, the couple must first be legally married by filing for marriage at their local government office, and the official documentation must be produced in order for the ceremony to be held. Before ever getting married there are two types of mate selection that may occur with the couple: (1) miai, or an arranged marriage and (2) ren ai, or a love match. The Japanese bride-to-be may be painted pure white from head to toe, visibly declaring her maiden status to the gods. Two choices of headgear exist. One, the watabōshi, is a white hood; the other, called the tsunokakushi, serves to hide the bride's 'horns of jealousy.' It also symbolizes the bride's intention to become a gentle and obedient wife.
Traditional Japanese wedding customs (shinzen shiki) involve an elaborate ceremony held at a Shinto shrine. Japanese weddings are being increasingly extravagant with all the elaborate details placed into thought. However, in some cases, younger generations choose to abandon the formal ways by having a "no host party" for a wedding. In this situation, the guests include mainly of the couple's friends who pay an attendance fee.
Russian wedding customs
A traditional Russian wedding lasts for at least two days and some weddings last as long as a week. Throughout the celebration there is dancing, singing, long toasts, and food and drinks. The best man and maid of honor are called witnesses, "svideteli" in Russian. The ceremony and the ring exchange takes place on the first day of the wedding.
Throughout the years, Russian weddings have adopted many western customs, including bridesmaids and flower girls. During the wedding feast any of the guests can start chanting "Gor'ko" ("bitter") which usually is immediately supported by the rest of the guests. In this case bride and groom should kiss each other and the kiss should last for as long as the chanting continues.
A Pakistani wedding typically consist of four ceremonies on four separate days. It may consist of 3 days if the first function called "Mehndi" is done in a combined manner by both the bride and groom's family.
The first function is Mehndi in which the families get together and celebrate the upcoming wedding function. On this day, it is customary to wear either green, yellow, orange, or other vibrant colors. The bride-to-be gets her hands painted with henna, and songs and dances go on throughout the night.The next day is "baraat" which is hosted by the bride's family. This event is usually held in a reception hall, and the groom comes over with his family and friends; a large feast is given. The bride's friends and relatives are also present, and the Baraat event can be considered the 'main' wedding event as it is the largest one out of all the events. Then there is the holy ceremony of "Nikah" which is performed by a religious Pastor or imam, after which bride and groom are declared as husband and wife.The Next day there is a function of "Walima" in which the groom's family is the host and the bride's family come over for a big feast.
On her wedding day, the bride-to-be can wear any color she wants, but vibrant colors and lots of traditional gold jewelry are typically worn. It is customary for the bride to wear traditional clothes such as a lahnga, shalwar kameez, or sari. These weddings are also typical of the Muslim community in India.
Two or three days before the wedding, the couple organizes a celebration called Krevati (Greek for bed) in their new home. In Krevati, friends and relatives of the couple put money and young children on the couple's new bed for prosperity and fertility in their life. After the custom, they usually have a party with food and music.
On the day of the wedding, usually Saturday, but also Friday or Sunday, the groom cannot see the bride until the wedding ceremony. The groom usually arrives first in church and waits for bride, who usually arrives late. After they exchange flower bouquets, they have the wedding ceremony, where the best man puts the wedding rings and crowns on the couple. The couple drink red wine from the same glass (between one and three sips, depending on the tradition). This is not "communion" in the formal religious sense, but about sharing the cup of life. At the end of the wedding ceremony, as the newly wedded pair leave the church, the guests throw rice and flowers for fertility and felicity. Special guests, such as close friends and family receive sugar-coated almonds (traditionally an odd number, usually seven but sometimes five) as a gift from the couple. Most Greek ceremonies are Orthodox.
After the ceremony, usually the couple hold a great wedding party in some place with plenty of food, drinks, music and dance, usually until next morning. The wedding party starts with the invited people waiting for the couple, who usually come after some time. They start the party dancing blues and eating a piece of their wedding cake. In some point of the party, they also dance the traditional zeibekiko (groom) and çiftetelli (bride).
In many places of Greece, where they hold a more traditional wedding, they usually play only traditional music and eat local food. For example in the region of Cyclades, they eat the traditional pasteli (solid honey with sesame) and in the region of Crete they cook rice with goat. In most traditional weddings, they bake whole animals like pigs, goats or sheep just like the Greek Easter celebration. Before the church ceremony, especially in smaller areas, usually friends and relatives of the bride and the groom, accompanies them separately to the church playing traditional instruments, according to the region.
A typical Greek wedding will usually have more than 100 invited people (but usually 250-500) who are friends, siblings, grandparents, uncles, aunts, first or second cousins, neighbors and colleagues. It is common to have guests whom the couple has never met before. This is because the people who will be invited are usually determined by the parents of the couple and not by the couple themselves. Traditionally, the whole village would have attended the wedding, so very often the parents invite friends of theirs and their children, to the weddings of their own children.
There are many other traditions which are local to their regional areas. One famous tradition is the pinning of money on the bride's dress. This custom originated in one part of Greece, where it is a substitute for wedding presents, however it has become more widespread recently.
The Western custom of a bride wearing a white wedding dress came to symbolize purity in the Victorian era, not virginity. Within the "white wedding" tradition, a white dress and veil is not considered appropriate in the second or subsequent wedding of a widow or divorcee. The specific conventions of Western weddings, largely from a Protestant and Catholic viewpoint, are discussed at "white wedding".
A wedding is often followed or accompanied by a wedding reception, which in some areas may be known as the 'Wedding Breakfast', at which an elaborate wedding cake is served. Western traditions include toasting the couple, the newlyweds having the first dance, and cutting the cake. A bride may throw her bouquet to the assembled group of all unmarried women in attendance, with folklore suggesting the person who catches it will be the next to wed. A fairly recent equivalent has the groom throwing the bride's garter to the assembled unmarried men; the man who catches it is supposedly the next to wed.
The Wedding Breakfast is one occasion where every member of the family who has had at least some role in the wedding is present. It is also important as the first time the newly married bride and groom share their first meal together as a lawfully wedded couple. The word Breakfast comes from a more ancient tradition of fasting before the wedding ceremony, the Wedding Breakfast is therefore 'breaking that fast'. The modern Wedding Breakfast includes the service of food to guests that can range from traditional roasts, buffets, or regional treats such as in the case of a London Wedding in the 'East End'.
A modern tradition is for brides to wear or carry "something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue" during the service. It is considered good luck to do so. Often the bride attempts to have one item that meets all of these qualifications, such as a borrowed blue handkerchief which is "new to her" but loaned by her grandmother (thus making it old). Another addition to this custom is to wear a coin in one's shoe to bring prosperity
Pakistani wedding customs