A traditional wedding is a colorful and lavish celebration. Numerous guests are one of the most important factors of the event. For example, in Greece, it is customary to invite all relatives to the wedding, so there can be more than five hundred guests. Wedding ceremonies in Greece are bright and cheerful. At this time, you can hear old songs and see national dances.
1. Types of traditional weddings
The traditional wedding is the most common and classic wedding scenario – with a solemn painting in the registry office, an impressive number of guests and a magnificent banquet at the end of the wedding event. The ransom of the bride, meeting the newlyweds with bread and salt, a wedding cortege, a photo session, a toastmaster and fun contests, as a rule, are included. The European version of the wedding is included in this division, so it differs only in the seating of guests at the banquet and on-site registration.
The thematic wedding is a wedding look that is actively gaining popularity. A characteristic feature of themed weddings is the choice of a theme and its support at all stages during the organization of the celebration – accessories, design style, choice of wedding venue, like the Bran Castle, outfits for the newlyweds and guests, menus. The unusual format promises bright emotions to all its participants, a unique wedding look and requires an author’s approach, creative and financial resources.
Minimalistic weddings are also economical weddings, as they imply a small number of guests and skipping parts of the wedding stages. Sometimes, newlyweds limit themselves to painting in the registry office and a symbolic buffet table in a narrow circle of their closest ones before leaving for their honeymoon. For various reasons, including economic ones, modern newlyweds are increasingly inclined towards this type of wedding, preferring to spend money not on celebrating, but on arranging family life.
2. Greek traditional wedding: preparations, celebration, dresses and decor
Greek themed wedding customs and traditions are quite diverse, and the first of them begins a week before the celebration. The moment when the bride receives a symbolic gift from the groom is considered the beginning for preparation, as a rule, this happens on Monday. On Tuesday, it is not customary to do anything, so it is dedicated to relaxation, but active preparations begin on Wednesday.
At this time, the mother of the bride and her relatives lay the dowry for the young, which is collected many years before the significant event. The next day, Thursday, the ancient rite of “making the bed” is performed before the Greek wedding. In big cities, such a ritual has already lost its relevance, but in remote villages it is still performed. Depending on the region, the rite has different interpretations regarding its participants. On the appointed day, the groom’s relatives, and in some cases he himself, gather at the bride’s house. The facade of the building and the interior are decorated in advance with beautiful tulle, curtains, flowers, and ribbons so that it can be seen from a great distance. While the guests are receiving refreshments, the bride’s friends and her relatives are covering the marriage bed, and then invite the groom or his mother to evaluate their efforts.
As a rule, marriage in Greece always begins on Saturday. This day is marked by two events: the sacrifice of a ritual ram and the transfer of the bride’s dowry to the young man’s house. Early on Saturday morning, the groom slaughters a young lamb, from whose meat dishes are then prepared and included in the Greek wedding menu. The transfer of dowry is the central event of such a day, and many curious people look forward to this moment. There is also a tradition for young people to take a bath on Saturday, but today it has already lost its relevance.
Weddings in Greece are always scheduled for Sunday. In the early morning, the young woman is dressed in a wedding dress and her hair is done. When she is ready, she is taken to the “bride’s corner”, which is a secluded area in the room, decorated with flowers and ribbons. During the wedding rituals, the bride is there. The first rite that awaits the groom upon arrival at the young house is the Greek ransom at the wedding. It differs in many ways from other countries, because in order to get to his bride, the groom will have to pay with a chicken. To receive this symbol of fertility, the young may even block the path with ropes. Then the bride goes down to the guests and dances a farewell dance with her father, after which the young people are escorted out of the house.
Today in Greece, the modern style of wedding costumes is welcomed, but until now, the clothes of the Greek wedding were decorated with traditional elements of the wedding dress. On the day of the wedding, the young woman is dressed in a wedding dress, and her brother ties a belt around her waist and ties it into three knots. The dress for the Greek bride is complemented with golden threads that are woven into her hair, and they fall to the very knees. The bride’s hair is done by her bridesmaids, after which she kisses their hands in gratitude.
A Greece wedding venue does not require fancy decoration of the hall for celebration. Pay attention to colors. If the event is celebrated indoors, remind guests of the theme of the wedding with soft blue, white and blue tones – the colors of the pure Ionian Sea. White colors will look beautiful in combination with any soft shades. A Greek wedding does not need contrasting accents; nature can be the main decoration. For example, choosing a room with a colonnade, future spouses can order an artificial vine – this element of decor will fit perfectly into the interior. A suitable decoration will be lush branches of olive and laurel.
On the territory of the banquet hall, white flowers that are present in the bride’s bouquet will look good. Beautiful and graceful amphoras, trays and bowls with fruit, goblets for wine, earthenware with snacks will be suitable details for creating a Greek style at a wedding. It is good if the hall is decorated with imitations of Greek sculptures and statues. Magnificent decor details for a wedding are light, flowing fabrics, trembling even from a light gust of breeze. If the wedding is to be celebrated on the coast, the floral motifs, in addition to the beautiful views, will be enough decoration in themselves. For a wedding on the beach, it is better to use only one color for decoration – white.
All in all, there are many wedding traditions in Greece and they are different in each region of the country. In ancient times, when these customs were created, people believed that by observing all the necessary rituals, they would provide the newlywed with a happy, prosperous life. There is, of course, some truth in this. In our time, when some wedding ceremonies are still observed at the Greek wedding, it turns into a colorful event.
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