A Traditional English Wedding
There are a lot of blog posts and websites telling you how to have a different and unique wedding, but what if you want a traditional English wedding?
Unique weddings with the couple’s personality stamped all over it are fantastic! There is nothing better than being at a wedding that is fantastically exclusive to that couple: an Alice-in-Wonderland wedding, a Star Wars wedding, they are all good fun and make marriage not just a solemn vow, but also a way of expressing the couple’s personality with all their friends and family.
But what if you’d like a traditional English wedding. You may not be aware of what is traditional for an English wedding, you may not know what happens. This blog post is about the up-to-date version of a traditional English wedding.
While this is a terrifying prospect for any groom, it does show the father-in-law-to-be that you’re an upstanding young man and that you’re making a connection with the family.
However, if the bride doesn’t speak to her dad, it is still traditional if you ask her mum for permission.
My h2b asked my dad for permission to propose to me, which my dad didn’t expect at all! I thought it was a nice touch.
Traditionally, the bridal party pay for their own clothes for the wedding. I don’t think that’s very fair because wedding clothes can be very expensive but, this is the tradition.
While preparing for your wedding, remember for luck you will have to wear
Something old, something new
Something borrowed, something blue
And a silver sixpence in your shoe
The Night Before
Traditionally, the bride and groom don’t see each other the night before the wedding, it is considered bad luck. It makes a lot of sense, really. With nerves running high it’s easy to snap at your h2b and start an argument, that’s the last thing you need the night before your wedding.
Your Wedding Day
The groom and his party will be preparing for the wedding somewhere away from the bride and her side. He will then arrive at the venue roughly half an hour early to greet guests and mingle.
The bride and her father, or the person who is walking her down the isle, will then leave the house in a second mode to transport to arrive slightly after the bridesmaids.
Regardless of the type of ceremony you have, the bridesmaids, bride and the father-of-the-bride will take photos outside the venue before they go in. Then the bride enters and she and the groom marry!! (The exciting bit!!)
After the ceremony, there’s usually photos with the bride and groom, the guests, the bride’s and groom’s families and friends, before moving on to the reception venue.
Remember to throw your confetti (if allowed) for the photos!
Upon arriving at the reception venue, be expected to take yet more pictures! The bride and groom often sneak off for some quiet time and some photos alone before taking photos with their guests.
Tossing the Bouquet
This makes a fantastic picture, and it’s best to be done when everyone is gathered outside having their photos taken. All the single women gather into a group and the bride tosses the bouquet to them. The single lady who catches the bouquet is the next one to get married!
If your something blue is a garter, you could even toss that for the single men! The one who catches it is next to get laid.
The Wedding Breakfast
Whether or not you choose to have a receiving line, the wedding breakfast (so called because it’s the first meal the bride and groom will eat together as a married couple) starts at around 4pm.
There are usually three or four courses and you could have a ‘choice menu’ which means guests send in their orders for the meal from a small selection with their RSVP’s.
First up is the father of the bride. He presents the new couple to the guests and embarrasses the bride a bit.
Next up is the groom. He thanks the father of the bride for his kind words then he does the thanks. Thank you for coming, thank you to the bridesmaids for being so beautiful, thank you to the groomsmen for doing a fantastic job, thank you to the parents for being supportive, thank you to his new wife for being so kind to marry him and turning up looking beautiful. He gives out the thank you gifts here too.
And finally, it’s the best man. He thanks the groom for his kind words on behalf of the groomsmen and the bridesmaids, then proceeds to embarrass the groom.
This usually happens after the meal has been cleared away, the speeches have been finished. The bride and groom cut their cake together.
The First Dance
Before the evening party can begin, it’s the first dance! Whether it be lumbering around the dance floor to a popular slow dance, or something you’ve practiced, the first dance is a key couple moment in any British wedding.
The Evening Reception
Once the evening reception has begun, that’s the last part of your usual British wedding. You may release fire lanterns or have some fireworks. You could have some karaoke or break dancing, but whatever you do, it will be all encompassed in your evening reception.