by Susan Hawkins
As your wedding day approaches you'll hear them from practically everyone, and if you take them all seriously, you'll double your wedding planning activities. We're talking about wedding superstitions, and fortunately, the government has never spent billions of dollars to confirm even one of them. Nor has anyone else. Some wedding superstitions are as old as marriage itself, and if you're a superstitious person - or even if you're not, there are wonderful ways to acknowledge these superstitions at your wedding celebration.
For instance, do you know why flower girls drop flower petals as they walk down the aisle? Apparently it provides the newlyweds with lots of chances to have babies! You may want to limit the number of petals in your flower girl's basket, or you might want to put those petals in the hands of your guests in the form of a wedding favor with a lovely scented rose ball candle or Hibiscus favor boxes filled with white-chocolate hearts.
Throwing rice has been a tradition a many a wedding, but few people know why. The myth holds that throwing rice at the new couple was to "feed" the evil spirits and distract them, thus keeping the new marriage safe. Fair enough. But the rice is having the opposite effect on the birds that come along and eat the rice. With specially made, biodegradable designer wedding rice, you can keep the bride and the birds safe.
One old wedding superstition maintains that if the groom's mother throws an old shoe over (not at!) the new bride as they leave the wedding ceremony location, the bride and her mother-in-law will be friends forever! If this is true, then let's take it a step further. If a little is good, a lot is better. Sprinkle the tables at your celebration with a candle shoe wedding favor so you won't get a concussion if Mom-in Law misses when she chucks that shoe.
Throwing the garter began in France when pieces of the bridal attire were considered lucky. The bride threw the garter to the guests and whoever caught it could expect good luck. In the United States, the groom traditionally removes the garter from the bride and throws it to the unmarried men. The man who catches it is thought to be the next to marry. Why should just single guys have a head start on the road to the altar? Favor all your guests with sensual garters and watch the room explode with romance.
Perhaps the most famous wedding superstition of all requires the bride to carry "Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue." "Something old" symbolizes continuity with the bride's family and the past. "Something new" means optimism and hope for the bride's new life. "Something borrowed" is usually an item from a happily married friend or family member, whose good fortune in marriage should carry over to the new bride, and it also reminds the bride she can depend on her friends and family. "Something Blue" has been connected to weddings for centuries. Brides in ancient Rome wore blue to symbolize love, modesty, and fidelity. Can there be a more meaningful wedding favor for your guests than to send them home with the same sentiments? A favor of "Something Old, New, Borrowed and Blue" will keep your wedding and reception close to their hearts. Superstitious or not, sometimes superstitions bring an added touch of magic and wonder to our lives.