Wedding ceremonies and traditions have grown over the centuries, combining fears, beliefs and traditions from a variety of cultures and ages. As a result there are many superstitions, signs and symbols surrounding the wedding day and the marriage and what will bring the happy couple good luck or bad luck in their lives.
Superstitions range from the weather to the colour of the wedding dress and which finger you wear the ring on, so here are a few of the key wedding superstitions to help you avoid the bad luck omens and make your wedding day as positive as possible:
- Good Luck Superstitions
- Wednesday is supposed to be the luckiest day to marry overall, although a Monday wedding will bring the couple wealth, while a Tuesday ceremony is said to be good for the health
- The groom traditionally carries the bride across the threshold after the ceremony to protect her from evil spirits which might spring up from under the doorway to get her
- In the Hindu culture, rain on your wedding day is considered good luck
- Painting henna on your hands and feet is a Middle Eastern bridal tradition to ward off evil spirits
- In Sweden, it is good luck to put a silver coin from your father and a gold coin from your mother, in each of your shoes to ensure you have everything you need. I can’t imagine this would be very comfortable when walking down the aisle!
- In Tudor times, guests threw their shoes at the couple for good luck after the ceremony, thankfully nowadays we throw rice or confetti rather than shoes, but it’s all to bring good luck
- Bad Luck Superstitions
- It’s said to be bad luck if you and your groom have surnames which start with the same letter
- May is supposedly the worst month to get married in – if you marry in May you will rue the day – so the rhyme goes
- Ring-based Superstitions
- If the wedding ring is too loose there will be forgetfulness and carelessness within the marriage because the couple are not a perfect fit
- On the other hand, if the wedding ring is too small or doesn’t fit, it can mean strain on the relationship or jealousy between the couple
- There are various superstitions around dropping the wedding ring during the ceremony, some say it’s bad luck, others believe it shakes out evil spirits and brings the couple good luck
- Eternity rings also come with superstitions, particularly around when to buy an eternity ring. Traditionally these rings are bought after the marriage and demonstrate the eternity the couple will be spending together. However there is also a superstition that they really represent the cycle of life and should be given to celebrate the birth of the first child.
4. Wedding Dress Based Superstitions
- Finding a spider inside your wedding dress before the ceremony is thought to be a good omen for the marriage
- Veils are worn to protect brides from evil spirits which might want to disrupt their wedding day and hiding the bride’s face prevents the spirits from reaching them
- There are many superstitions around wedding dress colours. In many cultures, wearing red is a sign of good luck. However, in others a red wedding dress symbolises death. If you wear a yellow or green dress some cultures and superstitions associate these colours with shame
5. Food Superstitions
- Breaking bread over a bride’s head was meant to bring fertility blessings – fortunately this has moved onto the cutting of the wedding cake instead
- Family Superstitions
- Single women at weddings should sleep with a slice of the wedding cake under their pillow to see their future husband in a dream
- If a younger sister marries first, the older sister has to dance barefoot at the wedding otherwise she will never get married herself
7. Ceremony Superstitions
- Never mind swapping rings, many cultures believe the couple’s hands have to be tied together to ensure fidelity and commitment – this is where we get the phrase, “tying the knot”
- The bride stands to the left of her groom in a Christian ceremony so the groom has his sword-holding hand free to protect her and fight off any rivals who might approach
As you can see, there are many superstitions around wedding ceremonies, many of which conflict depending on the culture they come from so whether you think spiders in your wedding dress is good luck or just creepy, is entirely up to you! The main thing is not to worry or overthink the signs and symbolism and enjoy the day with your friends and family.