No matter where in the world you are, weddings are a special moment that are cherished by the two people involved for their entire lifetimes.
But around the world, weddings are celebrated in very different ways by different cultures. We’re going to take a quick look at the key difference (and some similarities!) between Western and Eastern (Asian) weddings.
Western brides almost exclusively wear all-white wedding dresses, a tradition which is said to have been started in the 19th century by the Queen herself, Queen Victoria.
On the other hand, Eastern brides are more likely to wear other colours, especially red, which is said to bring prosperity and good fortune.
Whatever colour is chosen, it will probably be reflected in the décor and flower arrangements of the day too.
However, there are some things that both cultures have begun to borrow from each other. For example, according to Sonas Haute Couture, who sell Asian wedding garments: “We’ve seen lots more Western influence coming into Eastern weddings, with lots more brides seeking to wear white dresses.
“We even have a full range of Western gowns and an IndoWestern range for men, both of which are proving increasingly popular.”
On the other hand, the tradition of ditching your main wedding dress in favour of something a little more comfortable for the reception is something that Western weddings have picked up from Eastern (especially Chinese) weddings.
Another key similarity is that both sets of brides you wear a veil, to be lifted by the groom after the vows have been exchanged. And while the specific reasoning behind wearing a veil differs slightly around the world, it’s generally to do with protecting her from evil spirits.
In terms of jewellery, the key tradition in the West is of the exchanging of engagement rings (usually diamond) and wedding rings at the ceremony itself.
In an Asian wedding, the exchanging of rings has started to creep in, but the prevalent tradition is of the bride being given pure gold jewellery by her family.
If you’ve been invited to an Asian wedding but aren’t sure what to wear, check out this blog post from Wedding Wire.
Both Eastern and Western weddings have many traditions which are unique to them. For example, while in the West, the bridesmaids and other female guests may hold a ‘bridal shower’ to give gifts and money to the bride to help her and her husband furnish their new home, in Eastern weddings, it’s the parents on both sides of the wedding who will visit each other before the big day bearing gifts.
The ‘something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue’ tradition is an exclusively Western thing, just like the tradition of placing good luck tokens within the wedding bed in the East, although this one is starting to die out.
To find out more about the many traditions that go with an Asian wedding, check out this post from Your Wedding magazine. You may even want to steal some for your own big day!