Thursday, May 5, 2016
Monday, April 25, 2016
Wedding Lore and Traditions
"Something borrowed" usually comes from a happily married woman and is thought to lend some of her good fortune and joy to the new bride.
Have you ever wondered why the bride stands to the left of the groom, or why the wedding ring is worn on the third finger of the left hand? The origins and meaning behind some of our most cherished wedding traditions may surprise you. There are, of course, multiple explanations for each piece of wedding lore, and few can be definitively traced back to their roots. Below are some of the more common and popular stories behind these traditions.
Tossing the Bouquet
Tossing the bouquet is a tradition that stems from England. Women used to try to rip pieces of the bride's dress and flowers in order to obtain some of her good luck. To escape from the crowd the bride would toss her bouquet and run away. Today the bouquet is tossed to single women with the belief that whoever catches it will be the next to marry.
Giving Away the Bride
The tradition of the father giving away his daughter has its roots in the days of arranged marriages. Daughters in those times were considered their father's property. It was the father's right to give his child to the groom, usually for a price. Today a father giving away his daughter is a symbol of his blessing of the marriage.
The Wedding Ring
The wedding ring has been worn on the third finger of the left hand since Roman times. The Romans believed that the vein in that finger runs directly to the heart. The wedding ring is a never-ending circle, which symbolizes everlasting love.
The Best Man
In ancient times, men sometimes captured women to make them their brides. A man would take along his strongest and most trusted friend to help him fight resistance from the woman's family. This friend, therefore, was considered the best man among his friends. In Anglo-Saxon England, the best man accompanied the groom up the aisle to help defend the bride.
Bride on Groom's Left
Because grooms in Anglo-Saxon England often had to defend their brides, the bride would stand to the left of her groom so that his sword arm was free.
Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue, and a Sixpence in Your Shoe
"Something old" represents the bride's link to her family and the past. The bride may choose to wear a piece of family jewelry or her mother or grandmother's wedding gown. "Something new" represents hope for good fortune and success in the future. The bride often chooses the wedding gown to represent the new item. "Something borrowed" usually comes from a happily married woman and is thought to lend some of her good fortune and joy to the new bride. "Something blue" is a symbol of love, fidelity, and purity of the bride. A sixpence in her shoe is to wish the bride wealth in her future life.
The Tiered Wedding Cake
The origin of the tiered wedding cake also lies in Anglo-Saxon times. Guests would bring small cakes to the wedding and stack them on top of each other. Later, a clever French baker created a cake in the shape of the small cakes and covered it in frosting. It is now known as the tiered cake.
Flowers are incorporated into the wedding ceremony as a symbol of fertility. The first bouquets consisted of herbs and, later, orange blossoms.
The Bridal Veil
The bridal veil has long been a symbol of youth, modesty, and virginity and was used to ward off evil.
The bridal party is a tradition that has been established for many centuries. For a long time the purpose of the bridal party was to fool evil spirits. The bride's friends dressed similarly to her in order to confuse any virulent presences that might be lurking about. Today bridesmaids are there to support the bride in the stressful times during the wedding.
Monday, April 11, 2016
The Western custom of a bride wearing a white wedding dress came to symbolize purity, not virginity, in the Victorian era. Within the "white wedding" tradition, a white dress and veil is not considered appropriate in the second or subsequent wedding of a widow or divorcee. The specific conventions of Western weddings, largely from a Protestant and Catholic viewpoint, are discussed at "white wedding".
A wedding is often followed or accompanied by a wedding reception, which in some areas may be known as the 'Wedding Breakfast', at which an elaborate wedding cake is served. Western traditions include toasting the couple, the newlyweds having the first dance, and cutting the cake. A bride may throw her bouquet to the assembled group of all unmarried women in attendance, with folklore suggesting the person who catches it will be the next to wed. A fairly recent equivalent has the groom throwing the bride's garter to the assembled unmarried men; the man who catches it is supposedly the next to wed.
The Wedding Breakfast is one occasion where every member of the family who has had at least some role in the wedding is present. It is also important as the first time the newly married bride and groom share their first meal together as a lawfully wedded couple. The word Breakfast comes from a more ancient tradition of fasting before the wedding ceremony, the Wedding Breakfast is therefore 'breaking that fast'. The modern Wedding Breakfast includes the service of food to guests that can range from traditional roasts, buffets, or regional treats such as in the case of a London Wedding in the 'East End'.
Another Victorian tradition is for brides to wear or carry "something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue" during the service. It is considered good luck to do so. Often the bride attempts to have one item that meets all of these qualifications, such as a borrowed blue handkerchief which is "new to her" but loaned by her grandmother (thus making it old). Another addition to this custom is to wear a coin in one's shoe to bring prosperity.
The full text of the verse is:
- Something old, something new,
- Something borrowed, something blue,
- And silver sixpence in your shoe.
Thursday, April 7, 2016
This year’s London Bridal Show at Olympia saw a big turnout of retailers from across the UK as well as those who travelled from far further afield; it was an event that signposts optimism within the industry
When it comes to indicating the health and well being of a marketplace, attendance at major trade events says a lot and visitor numbers at this year’s London Bridal Show at Olympia suggest that the bridal industry is in great shape right now. The event registered a 10% increase in visitors year on year, with international buyers accounting for 25% of the total, the increase coming most notably from France and Southern Ireland. Retailers were in shopping mode and keen to see the newest collections from some of the big names in the business, while spending time looking at what new and upcoming design houses had to offer.
Said Mark Lesley, showing his eponymous labels as well as his designer bridal collection and occasionwear label Candy Quinn: “It was brilliant. Mark Lesley did wonderfully in terms of increased sales and new customers but Donna Salado was simply outstanding.”
Vikki McCarthy-Wright of Mooshki fame, used this exhibition to launch the stunning new Grace Philips collection agreed. “I cannot believe the reception this new collection has had. It was awesome.”
Europe’s first buying event of the season gave out a clear signal that glamour dressing leads the way, with daringly low backs, mermaid dresses with swishy tails, body-hugging silhouettes, and lace motifs on nude tulle creating a tattoo effect on the skin. Brides who always harboured that dream of being a fairy tale princess on their big day, will almost certainly fall in love with the astonishing array of ballgowns that the key designers are showing for the 2016/2017 season – sumptuous dresses with whittled-down waists and voluminous skirts, some made of layer upon layer of tulle, organza, chiffon and lace, others in simple, elegant fabrics such as Mikado, skilfully sculpted to form the desired fullness.
Alongside the perennial laces there were jewelled and embroidered appliqués introducing a different surface texture, and wonderful jacquards with their own glorious patterning that needed little more than a bead-worked belt to make the right impressions. Long or short – and there were plenty of knee-length and tea-length 50s-style dresses to be seen – it made little difference as long as that message of design confidence and quality make was present and very apparent.
In occasionwear, buyers were wooed and wowed with an amazing rainbow of colours and beautiful fabrics chosen for their drape-appeal, with a fair amount of sparkle to add to the red-carpet experience. Celeb dressing remains key in this sector of the market, where stand out is essential.
One feature of the show was the Monday seminars, run by experts for experts. Retailers attending got to hear first hand about every area of the business and how they could improve their own operation by taking note of what others were doing. Everything from entering awards, to dealing with difficult customers, to closing sales successfully, to working with suppliers was covered and the buyers lapped up the information handed to them.
Sunday, April 3, 2016
Vicky Anglo was born and raised in Athens, Greece surrounded by innovation and artistry. Her Father is a sculpture and provided the artistic environment that so naturally led her to follow in his creative footsteps. At the age of 13, Vicky attended a Bridal Fashion Show that sparked her desire to be part of the fashion industry. With a passion for design, a love for the glamour and elegance of weddings, Vicky attended Newbury College in Boston, MA and majored in Fashion Design. After graduation, Vicky gained hands on experience working as a designer for a bridal accessory company and enjoyed every moment. She fell even further in love with both fashion and design and the wedding industry, and decided to follow her dreams to start her own couture line of wedding gowns. For Vicky, the best part of her job is personally working with each bride to create unique, one of a kind wedding gowns with style, personality, and vision. Everyone is different, we all want our personality to shine-especially on our wedding day- so through innovative design and personal collaboration, Vicky works with our brides to ensure they look as great as they feel on their special day. This is her inspiration ans how Anglo Couture was born!
Wednesday, March 30, 2016
Reconciling who you want to include in your bridal party with who you're expected, requested, or even told to include can seem like an ordeal. With friends and family anticipating or assuming they'll be asked, it's easy to get confused and resentful. After all, this is supposed to be your day, your way, right? Relax. Choosing your attendants needn't be a nightmare. Prioritizing what's important is the key to arriving at a list that pleases everyone—even you.
Photo Credit: R.E.M. Video and Photography
The most obvious question is how many attendants to ask and who should be your maid/matron of honor. While etiquette books suggest one usher per 50 guests, protocol surrounding the number of bridesmaids is fuzzier (12, however, is the limit). "What's important is that you include those people to whom you feel closest," says Deborah Jones, owner of A Wedding In Minnesota, a bridal consultancy in Eden Prairie, Minnesota. Also consider where you'll be standing at the altar or huppah, and how many people can fit on either side of you. Aesthetically, the same number of attendants on both sides looks best, but there is no rule that says they have to match.
Start by writing your wish list of attendants. Next, add your fiancé's picks, and those who would make political sense(your brother's wife to make him happy, for example). See if there are natural groupings that would make choosing easier: all sisters, all school friends, just one sister and one friend, etc. If your list is still unwieldy, consider the following to help you eliminate people or decide their role.
First, think about their responsibilities. The maid/matron of honor is generally the bride's right-hand woman before and on the day of the wedding. Her main duties include planning the bridal shower and helping the bride select her gown and address invitations. The bridesmaids assist the maid/matron of honor and bride. All typically pay for their own dresses and travel expenses.
Second, evaluate your needs and expectations. Is this a gala affair with many details you'll need help coordinating, or a small, no-fuss ceremony? Are you the type of person who surrounds herself with friends and needs a sounding board for every decision, or do you have only one or two close confidantes?
Do you expect your attendants to devote a significant amount of time and money to your wedding? Would you feel comforted knowing that all of your bridesmaids lived in town, mere minutes away for minor emergencies? If someone says she can't afford to participate, can you make up the difference (and not take it personally)? Be honest with yourself: Are your expectations reasonable? Will you get mad if someone can't help out as much as you'd like due to her work or family commitments?
Third, factor in the lifestyle and current situation of those you intend to ask, and how it meshes or clashes with their responsibilities and your needs. For example, what if your sister lives in Alaska and your best friend just lost her job, or if another friend is so swamped with work or a new baby that she barely squeezes in a phone call, much less time to plan a bridal bash. All these circumstances impact a potential maid's ability to do the best job possible. That said, even if someone can't be there physically, she may still provide valuable moral support. So decide what's most important to you.
Popping the Question
Now the fun part—asking people to be in your party. Some brides try to avoid disappointing anyone by asking people they don't really want to participate, assuming they'll say no because they're too busy or won't be able to afford it. Big mistake: This approach can easily backfire. Some people are so honored to be included that they'll move the world to make it happen. Only ask those you'll be thrilled to hear a "yes" from.
If there's someone you want to ask but are concerned she'll feel pressured by time or money constraints, create a scenario in which each of you would feel comfortable backing out gracefully. Let her know she's one of your top choices but you understand if she has other commitments that make it difficult for her to take part. If you're willing to cover expenses, ask her how she feels about that. If she knows how important she is to you, she'll probably feel flattered, not insulted.
If you expected a friend to say yes and she doesn't, don't be offended. Chances are it's no reflection on you. Your friend is simply doing you the favour of being upfront and honest about the time and money she wants to devote to your event, an occasion she respects enough not to ruin.
If someone does accept and later seems unhappy with her decision, try to determine what's really going on.
Resolving conflicts with parents and in-laws isn't always so simple. Sometimes an edict is handed-down and that's that. For example, you may be told your sister will be your maid of honour, whether you like it or not. If you have a big enough party, it may not matter—a lot of your friends are included anyway. If you were planning on a small party, consider making it bigger to keep the peace.
Even if you can enforce your will and leave out a family member who expected to be included, consider the effect your stubbornness will have on family harmony. "If you deliberately leave out someone your parents or in-laws want included, you may be making a bigger statement than you intended," notes Claro. Their conspicuous absence is a visible declaration of your rejection. When it comes down to it, would including this person really ruin your wedding day? Or will the repercussions of leaving her out sully family relationships for years to come?