These days, a French theme can be found anywhere from furniture to clothing and even in functions such as weddings and parties. Wedding traditions, in particular, are different in France than they are in other cultures, in part because France is a unique country that offers a style and charm all its own. If you are planning a wedding in France or even wish to discover what French couples do when they are about to get married, it is easy to find out what French traditions are all about and how they apply to the bridal couple and the ceremony itself. Below are just a few of the wedding traditions utilised when a French couple decide to marry.
Traditions Before the Marriage Takes Place
When it comes to weddings in France, there are several traditions that set them apart. These include:
- The groom gives his fiancée a ring and she gives him a watch
- The groom usually picks up his bride from her home on the day of the wedding and children will block their path with white ribbons, which the bride will cut apart on her way to the chapel
- Brides often have their wedding dresses made instead of purchasing them, and they are kept in hope chests or armoires until the wedding day
- French brides are seldom, if ever, “bridezillas,” but instead are pleasant and amenable while planning their weddings
Of course, there are other French wedding traditions that apply before the wedding takes place, but these are a few of the most important ones.
The Wedding Ceremony Itself
For a French wedding ceremony, the rule is that the mayor at the town hall must perform the ceremony itself. The doors must remain open through the service because a wedding is meant to be public. In addition, although the couple usually has several witnesses, a best man and maid of honour are not used. If a couple decides to get married in a church, this is considered an extra perk but it is not required for the couple to become legally married. Only the town hall mayor can make the union a legal one.
In a French wedding, no wedding cake per se is used, but a pyramid of creme-filled balls stacked on top of one another is enjoyed by the wedding guests. The concoction is not necessarily white, either, and can be pink, blue, yellow, or any other colour the couple chooses. Food found at most French weddings includes French onion soup, sugar-coated almonds, pastries, and of course, champagne. Each of the foods has a historical significance and is thoroughly enjoyed by every guest in attendance.
After It Is All Over
French weddings tend to be extravagant parties that last all night long so they are definitely long-lasting events. Even if a French couple chooses a small wedding, most of these traditions are still respected and because the attention is usually centred on the two families and not the bride herself, the event is always a unique one. French weddings, quite simply, are unlike any other type of wedding anywhere else in the world and most French couples are happy about that.