Be it the cultural ceremonies of India, the classic wedding of Christians or the land of Jews, marriage in every culture has something special and unique about it, just like the saying goes- “Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue.” The warmth, passion, romance and beauty of Italy is just unmatchable. Similarly, Italian weddings are famous for their sophistication and warmth. The people of Italy take pride in being great romantic lovers. Weddings are a great deal for them. A wedding in Italy is not just a union of two people; it is the uniting of two families and their friends. The bride is expected to wear a garter on her wedding day, which is torn into pieces after the ceremony. In most parts of Italy, the brides wear beautiful flowing gowns with a veil. In some parts, wearing green symbolizes luck and prosperity. The bride wears the custom bridal jewellery, usually in diamonds or silver. The groom on the other hand provides for the bridal bouquet.
The day you choose to marry is selected cautiously in an Italian marriage. Italian customs forbid wedding ceremonies to take place during Lent or Advent, or in the month of May, which is dedicated to the Virgin Mary. Till date, Sunday is considered the best day to marry for prosperity, luck and peace whereas Friday and Tuesday are considered to be bad days for getting hitched.
The Rehearsal Dinner
The Rehearsal dinner of an Italian Wedding begins with the best man raising a toast to the new couple with a glass of champagne. The toast usually reads- “Per cent'anni" (For hundred years) or "Evviva gli sposi!" (Hooray for the newlyweds!)
Italian customs, just like the people of Italy are very interesting. On the way to church, the bride and the groom receive some challenges such as a crying baby, a fallen cloth or other household chores to test their skills before the wedding. It is also believed that the groom should carry a piece of iron to ward off the evil-eye. A best man and a maid of honour serve as the witnesses to the wedding.
The Wedding Dance
The bride carries a satin pouch during the reception, for the guests to place envelopes of money for a chance to dance with her. La Tarantella is performed by the guests to wish the couple love and luck. It is the dance of spider where dancers hold hands and do light and quick movements.
The Reception Buffet
Food and drinks hold as much importance in an Italian wedding, as the ceremony. Food has strong affiliations with bonding and togetherness for the people of Italy. The guests are served a lavish main course, up to as many as 14 courses, followed by a cake and coffee. Fresh and seasonal dishes along with rich pasta are served to the guests. Vintage wines in rich flavours are also served. Another old tradition is to give the candy-coated Jordan Almonds to the guests, in order to signify the bitter-sweet nature of a marriage.