Italian Confetti does not have the same meaning as in the English language. Rather than bits of paper thrown in celebration at a wedding, Italian Confetti is a consumable delicacy of sugared almonds. Tradition dictates that an odd number of them must be given to guests as a thank you for their presence at an Italian wedding; this is equivalent to the giving of wedding favours in the UK. Italian Confetti is generally presented to guests packaged in a bomboniera; a package made of lace and tied with ribbon.
China: Red Umbrellas & Bridal Sedan
Red umbrellas are employed to protect a Chinese bride from evil spirits on her wedding day. A bride will travel in a Bridal Sedan to her wedding ceremony. When she is ready to go and be married, the bride finally goes out to ascend the Sedan and will be accompanied by her bridesmaid who will hold a red umbrella over her head to protect her from any evil spirits. The Bride travels first to the groom’s home, where gongs, drums and other music will greet her on arrival. On exiting the Bridal Sedan, a Chinese bride will leap over an iron basin with charcoal inside. This is a ritual that is meant to bring prosperity and fend off evil spirits.
Germany: Log cutting
Cutting a log is a tradition that represents the first problem encountered by a couple in their married life together. It is a tradition that follows immediately after the wedding ceremony. Managing to cut a log is supposed to show how a couple will manage tough situations in their future life together.
Jamaica: Black Wedding Cake
Jamaican people traditionally serve black cake at their weddings. It resembles English wedding cake in terms of many of its ingredients and texture, but is widely regarded as the most potent celebratory cake worldwide. Jamaica’s black wedding cake contains two bottles of dark rum and half a bottle of brandy. Its extremely high alcoholic strength can be detected even after the smallest of slices!
Japan: Sake Drinking
The sharing of sake between a bride and groom formalises their bond of marriage. This is a Japanese wedding tradition that dates back to the 8th century. Starting with the smallest of three cups of sake, the groom will take three sips, followed by the bride. The newly married couple will then proceed to drink the same quantity: three sips each – from the middle sized cup and then from the large. When this has been completed, the sake toast ceremony between the couple ends with both families drinking a cup of sake together. This custom is called San San Ku Do, meaning “three sets of three sips equals nine”.
San San Kudo signifies the unity of two families, as well as their joint endorsement of the union between the newly married couple.
Poland: sponsored bridal dances
In Poland, guests pay to dance with the bride at the wedding reception. Her assistants collect all the donations for her hand on the dance floor and this money is then used to pay for the happy couple’s honeymoon.
Korea: the gift of wild geese
Korean weddings have traditionally featured ducks and geese. These species are known to mate for life and are therefore regarded as the ultimate symbol of fidelity. A Korean groom would traditionally give his new mother-in- law a live goose or duck to represent his commitment to her daughter. These days, the live goose is normally replaced by a wooden one, which represents the same loyalty.
Greece: new shoes
A Greek bride doesn’t purchase her own shoes ahead of her wedding day. She’ll be gifted them by the groom on the morning of the wedding, when they’ll be delivered to her house. The groom also encloses money that is inserted into the bride’s new shoes as an additional present. Providing they’re a good fit, this could well be considered quite the perfect wedding gift!