Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Something Old, Something New; Something Borrowed, Something Blue...

Something old, something new
Something borrowed, something blue
And a silver sixpence in her shoe.

Did you have all of these things on your wedding day? Most of us have only heard the first two lines. I had anyway and didn't even look at the origin before my big day. I did, however, stick with the tradition and have all those things. My something old was my grandmother's wedding band, something new was my wedding dress, something borrowed was my sister's head piece, and something blue were blue flowers that I sewed into my wedding day flip flops. I find it interesting to actually read the story of where this custom comes from. Eek, I should have looked it up sooner and added the sixpence!!

"Something old" symbolizes continuity with the bride's family and the past. "Something new" means optimism and hope for the bride's new life ahead. "Something borrowed" is usually an item from a happily married friend or family member, whose good fortune in marriage is supposed to carry over to the new bride. The borrowed item also reminds the bride that she can depend on her friends and family.

As for the colorful item, blue has been connected to weddings for centuries. In ancient Rome, brides wore blue to symbolize love, modesty, and fidelity. Christianity has long dressed the Virgin Mary in blue, so purity was associated with the color. Before the late 19th century, blue was a popular color for wedding gowns, as evidenced in proverbs like, "Marry in blue, lover be true."

And finally, a silver sixpence in the bride's shoe represents wealth and financial security. It may date back to a Scottish custom of a groom putting a silver coin under his foot for good luck. For optimum fortune, the sixpence should be in the left shoe. These days, a dime or a copper penny is sometimes substituted, and many companies sell keepsake sixpences for weddings.

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