Common American Wedding Traditions

Are you planning to get married soon? Youll only be getting married once in your life, so be sure to make it memorable. Here are some common American wedding traditions you can implement to make this momentous day more special.

1. Before the wedding ceremony

* Invitations are sent out to the wedding guests, normally 1 to 2 months before the big day.

* The couple chooses a color motif for the wedding, to be used as a guide in choosing the decorations, flowers, and even the colors for the bridesmaids.

2. During the wedding day

* The wedding rites may be done anywhere. However, its usually done at a courthouse, church, or outdoors. The ceremony is usually short and depends on the religious practices of the couple. The most common ceremony is based on the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. It can be done in less than 10 minutes, but may be lengthened with speeches or music.

* American brides wear off-white, white, silver, or any light-colored dress. The bride is free to choose any color, but black is highly discouraged because its considered as a color for mourning.

* Uncooked rice is thrown at the couple as they leave the venue, to represent fertility. Some throw birdseed because of a popular myth that the birds that will eat the rice will burst. Couples today opt to have clouds of bubbles on their path to avoid making a mess.

3. At the reception after the wedding ceremony

* The best man and the maid of honor will propose a toast for the newlywed couple. They will share their stories, personal thoughts, and message for the couple. The other guests will follow with their own toasts.

* The newlyweds will cut the wedding cake together and feed each other a bite. This is said to represent prosperity and fertility.

* The newlyweds will do their first dance. They will also dance with their parents to a song that theyve personally chosen. Some weddings have a dollar dance wherein the guests may dance with one of the newlyweds. They will then give a dollar after the dance.

* The bride may toss her bouquet to one of the single women at the reception. The woman who catches it is said to be the next one to get married. On the other hand, the groom tosses the brides garter to one of the single men. The one who catches the garter will place it on the leg of the girl who has the bouquet.

Wedding traditions continue to evolve over time. Some of these practices are still being done today, while some have become outdated. No matter what you choose to do for your wedding, whats important is that you get to celebrate your wedding with the people most important to you present to witness it.