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Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue Wedding Tradition


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

For centuries, brides have honoured the tradition of wearing an old, a new, a borrowed and a blue item on their wedding day.  While wearing these items is said to symbolise good luck for the bride, it's also a chance for the bride to demonstrate her love for a few special people in her life on her wedding day.

Each item in this wedding motto, which dates back to the Victorian era, symbolises a token of good luck for the bride. If she carries all of these symbols on her wedding day, her marriage will be a happy and fruitful one.

Something old

This represents the link with the bride's family and continuity with the past. To symbolise this connection, you may choose to wear an antique family heirloom such as your grandmother's wedding band or string of pearls.  You may like to incorporate something from your mother's or even grandmother's wedding gown - try pinning a piece of lace, a handkerchief or a vintage hatpin inside your gown for good luck.

Something new

The ‘something new' symbolises optimism and the bride's hopes for happiness in her future married life.  Wearing a new item on your wedding day signifies that you and your husband are creating a new bond that will endure forever.  You could choose your wedding gown to symbolise the new, but anything that you've purchased for your wedding such as rings, veil or flowers will also do. 

Something borrowed

‘Something borrowed' is usually an item from a happily married friend or family member, whose good fortune in marriage can be shared with the new bride.  The borrowed item also reminds the bride that she can rely on her friends and family. A borrowed item may include a friend's piece of jewellery or a garter.  Of course, anything that is borrowed must be returned afterwards to ensure good luck.

Something blue

Blue has been a lucky colour for brides for centuries.  In ancient Rome, brides wore blue as a sign of love, modesty and fidelity.  The Virgin Mary's mantle is usually painted as blue as the sky - a symbol of purity.  And before white became the colour of choice for wedding gowns, blue was a popular hue, a tradition reflected in the proverb: "Marry in blue, lover be true".  The easiest way to incorporate blue into your wedding attire is to wear a blue garter.  Another way to wear something blue is to include a blue flower in your headdress, floral bouquet or theme your wedding flowers in blue.

And a silver sixpence 

And finally, the rarely quoted last line calls for a silver sixpence in the bride's shoe to symbolise wealth and financial security. It may date back to the Scottish custom that demanded a groom place a silver coin under his foot for good luck. To secure your fortune, the coin (and these days brides choose modern-day currency, although some companies sell keepsake sixpences for weddings) should be in the left shoe. 



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