We used to see traditional white wedding gowns and dresses worn by brides. As per tradition, the white gown is said to represent the virginity of the bride wearing it. Yet not all brides all over the world wear this traditional wedding dress as they tie the knot with their groom. All countries and cultures have their own traditional wedding attire and it is quite interesting to know them.
For instance for the American Indians, a long dress that is finished with lots of fringes and embellished with many beads is traditionally worn by the bride. The garment’s different colors are representation of directions like North and South.
For the Africans, the traditional bridal attire is comprised of matched fabrics with vivid and bright colors. The bride also wears a gele headpiece, an iro wrap skirt, an iborum shawl and a buba blouse.
While most brides of the world stick with white gowns for their weddings, Chinese brides are different as they use a bolder color red in their wedding attire. The Chinese culture believes that red is the color of good luck and thus the Chinese people uses it as an essential element in most practices they have including weddings. The bride’s gown and the venue decorations like a lantern have to be in red. In China’s northern part, the bride’s traditional attire is a single piece of dress called the Qi Pao. It is intricately designed with silver and gold. While in Southern part of China, the bride traditionally wears a Cheongsam or Qun Gua or Kwa. These are outfits consisting of two pieces of garments with golden dragon or phoenix embellishment. When arranged marriages were still normally practiced in China, the bride wore a red colored veil during the entire ceremony. It will only be removed to reveal her face on the wedding night.
In Hispanic culture, brides usually wear a slim fitting dress with a bolero over it. An alternative to this is a dress in flamenco style. A Spanish-influenced mantilla veil is worn by the traditional Latin American and Mexican brides. Also a bride can wear the dress passed down to her by her grandmother and mother as a way of showing her pride for her family and as a means of paying respect to the ancestors. Beneath the wedding dress the bride has to wear a lingerie which she has sewn with red, blue and yellow ribbon to symbolize passion, money and food which all brides wish for their marriage. No traditional Hispanic bride would wear pearls on her wedding as these people believe that pearls are like tears which may bring grief to the married life ahead.
In India, Brides wear white and red saris. These colors for them symbolize purity, wealth and fertility. During the days before the wedding ceremony, the bride’s feet and hands are painted with elaborate henna patterns. These paintings called mehendi are made by the female members of the family.
While in Ireland, brides often wear a dress with the lucky blue color. Green is not a color for the brides to wear as the Irish people believe that it will attract some interfering fairy creatures. Also, if other brides would hate it if their gowns were torn, Irish brides on the contrary would even think about it as a good luck sign.