My Hunt for German Wedding Traditions, Part 2!

part2

It’s time for part two! Part two covers… *drum roll please*

Wedding Ceremony Traditions

In Germany, the preferred month for marriage is May.

Whoops. No go on that one.

saltbre

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The bride should carry salt and bread as an omen for good harvest, and the groom should carry grain for good luck and wealth.

I’m not sure where I’d hide bread in my wedding dress, but I’ll try. It’s starting to sound like some of these German traditions are trying to turn me into a snack bar for Mr. S. I would have gone with whipped cream, but bread’s good too, I guess.

kneel

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Have the groom kneel on the bride’s dress during the wedding ceremony to let everyone know that he’s the boss. Of course, the bride usually steps lightly on the groom’s shoe once they stand up to declare that was just wishful thinking on the groom’s part.

I’m not sure if we’re having any kneeling in our wedding ceremony, but if we do, this sounds pretty hilarious. Though, it almost sounds like something we’d do without knowing this. I’d probably get overly excited and stomp on Mr. S’s foot. That’d be bad.

Also, I could see him kneeling on it, me standing, and dress ripping. I’d die. Right there. One partial wedding, one full funeral.

Decorate exit doorways with garlands of flowers, greenery, and ribbons. Block the actual exits with a large ribbon. After the ceremony, the groom must ”˜ransom’ the couple out of the facility by promising everyone money or a party.

This is another tradition that unfortunately I don’t think people would get over hurr. Though it would be pretty awesome to go all renegade and break through the ribbon barrier.

I’m not sure if that’s the point though. And besides, they’s getting a party. It’s called “the reception”.

The bride carries lengths of white ribbon with her bouquet, and after the church ceremony is over and the guests are leaving the church, she hands each driver a ribbon that they tie to the radio antenna.

Sounds pretty awesome, but I wonder how in the world I’d be able to hold enough ribbons to hand out to each driver. Or how I’d even make sure to get all drivers. “You there! Stop! I didn’t give you a ribbon! Wait, I can’t chase you down because I’m too weighed down by the 4,000 ribbons I’m carrying!”

OK, maybe that’s a little overly dramatic, but that was what I pictured in my head. Perhaps a way to incorporate this into our wedding would just be to have the ribbons somehow attached to the programs? Or a basket of ribbons? Somehow, we could have ribbons (somewhere) and a sign with directions as to what to do with said ribbons.

Though, do people even have antennas anymore?

ricewer

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When the bride and groom leave the church, guests throw rice at them. Tradition states that the couple will have as many children as rice grains stay in the bride’s hair.

Awesome. This would kill birds and my lady-parts all in one swoop. Two birds with one stone, no? I’m pretty sure we’ll have something thrown at us, but it won’t be rice and it won’t signify the number of children that I’ll pop out.

Unless only three things stick to me. That’s my max.

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Another old Bavarian tradition occurs right after the church ceremony. When the couple exits the church, there is a log on a sawhorse and the couple has to cut the log in half. This is to symbolize the first tough tasks of their future they can accomplish together.

I think this one would be totally awesome, but somehow I bet I’ll get vetoed on it. Possible dress ruining and all that jazz. Plus sweating my makeup off. Still, I think this one would be hilarious and pretty amazing. I’m still going to keep this in the realm of possibilities!

As the couple walks to the wedding car, fir boughs are laid along the path to pave their first newlywed steps with fresh greenery to symbolize hope, luck, and fertility.

Aww, this one is sweet. Melikes. Another option for the “Let’s do it!” category.

After the wedding ceremony, a car procession is formed and drives through town honking their horns. Others honk back wishing the couple good luck.

OK, I can dig this. It could go hand-in-hand with the ribbon thing, that is, if people still have antennas. (I’m harping, I know.) Though I think other drivers just might take this as crazy. Is a massive honking fest even legal in the States?

BLOGGER

Mrs. Scissors

Location:
LaGrange, GA
Wedding Date:
June 2010
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  1. Member
    Ms. Library 1241 posts, Bumble bee @ 2:13 pm

    Hahahaha “This would kill birds and my lady-parts at the same time.” Hysterical! I’ve heard that rice can leave little spots on your skin too if it hits too hard! The horn honking sounds pretty darn cool!

  2. Member
    scissors 7343 posts, Busy Beekeeper @ 2:14 pm

    @Ms. Library: Also yet another reason why rice is a bad idea! :p

  3. Member
    Mrs. Mouse 5003 posts, Bee Keeper @ 2:15 pm

    I love the ribbon idea, though I’m pretty sure cards made after about, oh 2003, don’t have antennas anymore.

  4. Member
    misspug 3668 posts, Sugar bee @ 2:17 pm

    we want no killing of ladyparts! i really like the log-cutting, although i can understand the concerns. but look how much fun they’re having! maybe it can be a really skinny log. like a twig.

  5. Member
    mspencils 1015 posts, Bumble bee @ 2:18 pm

    Can you please cut a log together? please?

  6. Member
    scissors 7343 posts, Busy Beekeeper @ 2:21 pm

    @Miss Pencils: We are, we are! I’m super excited!
    @Miss Pug: Yeah, we’re going to do log lite. lol.
    @Mrs. Mouse: I know. Maybe pin the ribbons on? (Then it would also be like a marriage equality thing at the same time! Woo!)

  7. Member
    Goldilocks1107 2684 posts, Sugar bee @ 2:21 pm

    What’s with the Germans (my peeps!) and their salt? Salt in your shoe, salt carried down the aisle, are they trying to turn you into a human pretzel?!?

    So funny!

  8. Member
    scissors 7343 posts, Busy Beekeeper @ 2:22 pm

    @Goldilocks1107: I’ll be a snackbar by the end. :)

  9. Member
    frenchfries 2168 posts, Buzzing bee @ 2:25 pm

    The log cutting is pretty rad, I have to admit.

  10. Member
    spaniel 6778 posts, Busy Beekeeper @ 2:32 pm

    I have an antenna ;).

  11. Member
    mander411 735 posts, Busy bee @ 2:35 pm

    imagine ALL of these in one single wedding??? They are pretty funny. I looked into Russian traditions once (being thats my heritage) and it said something about breaking glasses on the ground and there needs to be massive amounts of alcohol. I would prefer no broken glass around my reception please!

  12. Member
    littlemissmoo 3006 posts, Sugar bee @ 3:12 pm

    I think honking is great! When I went to Munich recently we saw a wedding drive past and everyone was honking their horns. And pretty much everyone on the pavement stopped and had huge smiles on their faces.
    Although maybe it’s just more acceptable in Europe – it happens a lot after football games :)

    The fir one is cute :)

  13. Member
    skibobrown 1681 posts, Bumble bee @ 3:12 pm

    My fiance went to a German wedding (IN Germany no less), and they did the log cutting. Apparently the 90-year-old grandma of the bride got involved in the log cutting too. I really really hope they got some pictures of that!

  14. Member
    tea 2414 posts, Buzzing bee @ 3:18 pm

    add me as another fan of the ribbon and honking.

  15. Guest Icon Guest
    Cheryl, Guest @ 3:35 pm

    I actually just moved to Germany and witnessed the wedding car procession. The hubs and I thought it was pretty cool. I say do it! :-)

  16. Guest Icon Guest
    Jessica, Guest @ 3:54 pm

    I was born Germany and went back there to work for 5 years and to get back to my roots. I have been and seen a few weddings where these traditions are still followed and I really love the idea of the ribbons and log cutting. Thanks for reminding me of my where I’m from and how to make my wedding day more personal. My Mister loves that I’m “exotic” (his words) because I come from Germany – and he’s Scottish!

  17. Member
    Curlysue 1703 posts, Bumble bee @ 4:15 pm

    I come from a smaller town (45,000) in Kansas and people do the honking thing all the time. Usually the car is decorated too and people will automatically honk at you! I’m part German and my FI is part Polish so we’ve actually been looking into some traditions too—which some are new to me from your posts :) Thanks for including all of this and I look forward to what you guys include in your own wedding.

  18. Member
    potatochips 1193 posts, Bumble bee @ 4:28 pm

    You should definitely stash a loaf of bread in your dress somewhere.

  19. Member
    hamster 4047 posts, Honey bee @ 4:48 pm

    Bride as snack bar = awesomeness. I wanna pop some gummibears in my dress before I scamper down the aisle.

  20. Guest Icon Guest
    d, Guest @ 5:31 pm

    Rice killing birds is an urban legend. Birds eat rice wherever it grows.

    http://www.snopes.com/critters/crusader/birdrice.asp

  21. Member
    scissors 7343 posts, Busy Beekeeper @ 7:20 pm

    @d: Oh well. Our church doesn’t allow it either because of the mess factor.

  22. Member
    scissors 7343 posts, Busy Beekeeper @ 7:20 pm

    @Ms Potato Chips: Maybe use it as cutlets for my boobness area?

  23. Member
    rainbow 1525 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:04 pm

    Cut. The. Log. Do it. That would awesome. The Lumberjack Bride. Possible title for your recaps? ;)

  24. Member
    mimi06d 646 posts, Busy bee @ 8:18 pm

    please please please cut the log!!!!!! it would be amazing.

  25. Member
    guineapig 1375 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:35 pm

    You should definitely cut a log! (somehow that sounds like code for something) – maybe pre-saw part of the log so that it’s a little easier and thus less sweaty? Or I second Pug! Use a twig :) Great traditions… especially the bride snackbar.

  26. Member
    parfait 1755 posts, Buzzing bee @ 10:09 pm

    I like the ribbon one! But you’re right—I don’t even know if there are antennas on cars anymore.

  27. Member
    nhaggard21 7 posts, Newbee @ 11:20 pm

    my brother was married in Germany and the car procession was so much fun! just make sure you don’t get stuck on a one way dead end.. turning around can be a pain ;)

  28. Guest Icon Guest
    Rev. Kayelily, Guest @ 11:40 pm

    You do know about the German wedding tradition of The Bridal Cup and Wine Ceremony, don’t you? I have the script for the wedding ceremony if you need it. It is the story of how the suitor of the daughter of a German nobleman cleverly designed a special wedding cup that could be drunk from by two people at the same time without spilling a drop in response to the challenge by the father in order to win the hand of his daughter. Just Google my name and you will find me and you can email me for a copy. You can buy a replica bridal cup online.

  29. Member
    Cybele 355 posts, Helper bee @ 2:55 am

    @ Rainbow – Oh God. Now I have Monty Python’s Lumberjack Song stuck in my head… possible choice for music eh? ;)

  30. Member
    infamia 169 posts, Blushing bee @ 7:43 am

    Wow – so cool! I have never heard of the bread and salt thing for a bride (in Frankfurt you bring bread and salt as a housewarming gift) but the ribbon/honking is sooooooo much fun! Don’t miss out on that!

  31. Member
    msswan 1046 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:12 am

    I would be sooo down with the log cutting!

  32. Guest Icon Guest
    Yvonne, Guest @ 8:13 am

    Do the ribbons! As you suggested yourself you can hang them anywhere on the car. We rode these awesome bikes to get to church. And we just hung the ribbon on the bikes!

    And the rice is really fun and makes some good pictures. Have a look here and here

    As you can see guests formed a double row with skis as we met during ski vacation. So you could add this as well as a typical tradition: form a double row with something that is typical for the couple, or with something they have in common. In our case, this was a complete surprise, we didn’t have a clue and it was so heartwarming that people brought their bulky skis to the church just for these 30 seconds!

    Girl, you will have sooooo much fun with all these traditions!

  33. Member
    msbuttons 5014 posts, Bee Keeper @ 10:33 am

    Love the ribbons, but I agree, that would be so hard! And the fir boughs…how romantic! Do it!

  34. Guest Icon Guest
    Julchen, Guest @ 6:03 pm

    the log sawing is not so hard as you might imagine. make sure, that the family gets a really soft piece of wood, quite old and not too strong. our castle prepared it secretly for us, because my sister asked them, it wasn’t sweaty at all. the ribbons work even without antennas, there are door knobs, as we do it now . you can create them before, put them in little cute baskets and start all the honking!

  35. Member
    scissors 7343 posts, Busy Beekeeper @ 8:28 pm

    @Miss Rainbow: Or maybe “Scissor Me Timbers?” lololol.

    @Miss Guinea Pig: That definitely sounds like it could be code for something else. :p

    @Miss Parfait: I know. Maybe hang them off of the mirrors?

    @nhaggard21: I wonder if it would scare the poo out of the whole town. Lol.

  36. Member
    scissors 7343 posts, Busy Beekeeper @ 8:32 pm

    @infamia: I think that might be a tradition from Bayern, because Mr. Scissors’ parents had not heard of it either. (Mr. Scissors et al hail from Waldacker, just outside of Frankfurt). Those photos are so awesome! Thank you so much for sharing this stuff. :)

    @Miss Buttons: I think it sounds super romantic too! Makes me wish for a winter wedding, though.

    @Julchen: Thanks for the wood advice! The ribbons and honking sound like so much fun… I’m sure we’ll find a way to put that in. We have to! :)

  37. Guest Icon Guest
    Wedding Program Girl, Guest @ 10:45 am

    Thanks so much for posting this!!! I died laughing all the way through it! I think the line about one partial wedding and one full funeral was my favorite! Also, I still have an antenna, but my car is a 2003 model!

  38. Member
    slicey19 3500 posts, Sugar bee @ 1:19 pm

    The ribbons and horns are great. I always forget about this at German weddings until it actually happens. However, instead of ribbon some people use pieces of tulle which is said to come from the bride’S veil but I’m not cutting my veil! We’ve also been given (luft)balloons but they tend to fly off once you hit the autobahn and those really do kill birds so stay away! People will tie the ribbons to roof racks, side mirrors, back wipers, etc. don’t let lack of antanea stop you. I have to remember to do this too actually!

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