Wedding traditions span hundreds of years, and seem to vary between religions, cultures, or regions. These traditions start early and some play on on the day of, or even after the wedding itself.
It is likely you have heard of the rhyme ‘Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue’, but did you know there is one more line? When reciting this rhyme most forget the final part- ‘and a silver sixpence in her shoe’.
This rhyme isn’t just catchy, it has lots of meaning and well wishes behind each word. So, what does each line mean? Let us help you understand (and modernize it!)
Something Old: This represents to the bride that the wedding is larger than herself. It is often a connection to family or the past. It symbolizes the bringing of her past, her traditions, and the family she has through to her married life. Usually this is a family heirloom, or sentimental item passed down to the bride for her wedding day (and meant for her to keep). Heirloom Jewelry or taking a piece of fabric from an old wedding dress to sew a small patch onto the new dress are some modern ways to bring something old with you down the aisle.
Something New: This is to symbolize the new life the couple are planning to spend together. We can help as your wedding gown checks this box! Think about items that you plan to keep and will hold a reminder to the vows, and optimism you have for your future and marriage. In addition to the dress, the exchanging of wedding rings also makes this line easy for most modern couples to achieve.
Something Borrowed: This is something borrowed from another, happy wedded couple. The borrowing of an item is meant to bring good luck (and good fertility) to the couple over the years to come. The British Tradition specifies for the bride to receive or borrow undergarments from a female friend or family member that had a healthy marriage and healthy kids. It was believed that if the bride wore these items, the good luck would follow her into her marriage as well. We don’t all love borrowing undergarments these days, but Jewelry, a veil, or something as simple as a ribbon tied around the steam of your bouquet would work (just don’t forget to return it!)
Something Blue: By having something blue it symbolizes love, purity and fidelity. Everything a bride traditionally represented. Today, blue still represents these three things, and can be incorporated by having a bit of blue in your garter (we can help with this), or a blue gem in your jewelry, or even just adding one blue flower to your bridal bouquet. For a more noticeable splash, use blue as the color for the wedding party attire, bouquets and boutonnieres and your “Something Blue” will be in every part of the wedding.
Silver Sixpence in her Shoe: A silver sixpence represents luck and financial prosperity in marriage! It is custom for the father to slip the silver sixpence into the bride’s heel before she is walked down the aisle to share his wishes towards her and her new partner. The Sixpence is common in Great Britain, but other countries follow the tradition with their own interpretation. In Sweden it is traditionally a gold coin given by the mother-of-the-bride. In Spain the groom provides the coin as a symbols of his willingness to share all that he has currently. This coin will be kept as a family keepsake and will be passed down to the first-born son to give to his bride one day. The tradition can also be found in Poland and Lithuania. It seems around the world a coin can symbolize a lot more than simply a form of money.
So to Summarize:
Something old - Honor family, cultural, and religious traditions
Something new - Start a new adventure and commit to the partnership
Something borrowed - Lean on those around you, and inherent their good prosperity
Something blue - Stay true to yourself, your spouse, and have love be your guide.
Silver Sixpence in her shoe - Create a foundation for financial security
No matter how you interpret and incorporate this bridal tradition, we hope your marriage is filled with traditions, adventures, prosperity, truth and security!