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Wedding Blog: The Celebrant Perth
All Things Related to Marriage and Weddings in Perth, Western Australia ... well anywhere in the world, really!
Wedding Lore and Traditions
Have you ever wondered why the bride stands to the left of the groom, or why the wedding ring is worn on the third finger of the left hand? The origins and meaning behind some of our most cherished wedding traditions may surprise you. There are, of course, multiple explanations for each piece of wedding lore, and few can be definitively traced back to their roots. Below are some of the more common and popular stories behind these traditions.
Tossing the Bouquet
Tossing the bouquet is a tradition that stems from England. Women used to try to rip pieces of the bride's dress and flowers in order to obtain some of her good luck. To escape from the crowd the bride would toss her bouquet and run away. Today the bouquet is tossed to single women with the belief that whoever catches it will be the next to marry.
Giving Away the Bride
The tradition of the father giving away his daughter has its roots in the days of arranged marriages. Daughters in those times were considered their father's property. It was the father's right to give his child to the groom, usually for a price. Today a father giving away his daughter is a symbol of his blessing of the marriage.

The Wedding Ring
The wedding ring has been worn on the third finger of the left hand since Roman times. The Romans believed that the vein in that finger runs directly to the heart. The wedding ring is a never-ending circle, which symbolizes everlasting love.
The Best Man
In ancient times, men sometimes captured women to make them their brides. A man would take along his strongest and most trusted friend to help him fight resistance from the woman's family. This friend, therefore, was considered the best man among his friends. In Anglo-Saxon England, the best man accompanied the groom up the aisle to help defend the bride.
Bride on Groom's Left
Because grooms in Anglo-Saxon England often had to defend their brides, the bride would stand to the left of her groom so that his sword arm was free.
Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue, and a Sixpence in Your Shoe
"Something old" represents the bride's link to her family and the past. The bride may choose to wear a piece of family jewelry or her mother or grandmother's wedding gown. "Something new" represents hope for good fortune and success in the future. The bride often chooses the wedding gown to represent the new item. "Something borrowed" usually comes from a happily married woman and is thought to lend some of her good fortune and joy to the new bride. "Something blue" is a symbol of love, fidelity, and purity of the bride. A sixpence in her shoe is to wish the bride wealth in her future life.
The Tiered Wedding Cake
The origin of the tiered wedding cake also lies in Anglo-Saxon times. Guests would bring small cakes to the wedding and stack them on top of each other. Later, a clever French baker created a cake in the shape of the small cakes and covered it in frosting. It is now known as the tiered cake.
A Wedding Bouquet
Flowers are incorporated into the wedding ceremony as a symbol of fertility. The first bouquets consisted of herbs and, later, orange blossoms.
The Bridal Veil
The bridal veil has long been a symbol of youth, modesty, and virginity and was used to ward off evil.
The bridal party is a tradition that has been established for many centuries. For a long time the purpose of the bridal party was to fool evil spirits. The bride's friends dressed similarly to her in order to confuse any virulent presences that might be lurking about. Today bridesmaids are there to support the bride in the stressful times during the wedding.
Why is June the most popular month for a wedding (overseas)?
Historically, the popularity of the month of June was to honour Juno, the Roman goddess of marriage. Others did it to time conception so births wouldn’t interfere with harvest work.
Brides in the 15th century chose to marry in June because it coincided with their annual bath. Back in time between the 1400 and 1500s, May was the month that all enjoyed their ‘annual bath’, as people were only able to bathe thoroughly once each year. Thus by June they still smelled some what fresher then they would in April next year. However, they were starting to smell so brides carried a  bouquet of flowers to hide the body odour.
Furthermore, the month of June is named after the goddess Juno, the Roman counterpart to Hera, the goddess of the hearth and home, and patron of wives.
Also, ancient tradition thought it would be most unlucky to marry in the month of May because in Roman times the Feast of the Dead and the Festival of the Goddess of Chastity both occurred in May.
It was not until the 16th century that the tradition for the bride to wear white began and it is still commonly followed today. White is considered to be a symbol of the bride's purity and her worthiness of her groom.
Tradition says that the first member of the newlywed couple to purchase a new item following the wedding will be the dominant force in the relationship. So to this day some superstitious brides will pre-arrange to buy a small item from one of the bridesmaids immediately following the ceremony.
Anniversary Date  - Traditional Gift Given Modern Gift Given
1st                       - Paper                         - Clocks
2nd                      - Cotton                       - China
3rd                       - Leather                      - Crystal, Glass
4th                       - Linen, Silk                  - Electrical Appliances
5th                       - Wood                        - Silverware
6th                       - Iron                            - Wood
7th                       - Wool, Copper            - Desk Sets/Pen-Pencil Sets
8th                       - Bronze                       - Linen, Laces
9th                       - Pottery, China            - Leather
10th                     - Tin, Aluminium           - Diamond Jewelry
11th                     - Steel                          - Fashion Jewelry, Accessories
12th                     - Silk                            - Pearls, Colored Gems
13th                     - Lace                          - Textiles, Furs
14th                     - Ivory                         - Gold Jewelry
15th                     - Crystal                       - Watches
20th                     - China                         - Platinum
25th                     - Silver                         - Sterling Silver
30th                     - Pearl                          - Diamond
35th                     - Coral                         - Jade
40th                     - Ruby                          - Ruby
45th                     - Sapphire                    - Sapphire
50th                     - Gold                          - Gold
55th                     - Emerald                     - Emerald
60th                     - Diamond                    - Diamond
Interesting Wedding Facts!  
• 71.7 per cent of couples will marry in a civil ceremony
• Grey, yellow, orange and silver are the least popular colour themes for weddings
• June, July and December are the least popular months in which to marry
• 87 per cent of couples will have a honeymoon
• 12.5 per cent of couples will have a destination wedding (either overseas or interstate)
• 76.6% of couples live together before marriage
• In 2013, 55.1% of couples married were both born in Australia, 31.6% were born in different countries, and 13.2% were born in the same overseas country
• 94% of brides-to-be consult a wedding website when researching their big day
• 87.5% of couples will not have a destination wedding
• 39% of couples say starting a family is their main priority after marrying
"Life is like sex - sure you can get through it alone, but it is so much more pleasurable when it is experienced with someone special." - Jack Newcomb 
"There is only one thing more beautiful in this world than a beautiful woman - and that's a beautiful woman in a beautiful wedding dress" - Jack Newcomb 
“Marriage: Love is the reason. Lifelong friendship is the gift. Kindness is the cause. Til’ death do us part is the length.” - Fawn Weaver
This The Celebrant Perth website was updated on Sunday, June 26, 2022 - Perth Celebrants / Celebrants Perth.