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Wedding Invitations From Around the World
Wedding invitations and the traditions underlying them vary greatly from culture to culture and country to country. Here are some interesting traditions to get you inspired.
Chinese wedding traditions
Chinese tradition dictates that invitations are red and gold. Red is the colour of love, prosperity and happiness, and gold is a symbol of good luck and fortune. Chinese wedding invitations are usually elaborately decorated with Chinese characters and stylised pictures. The dragon and the phoenix are popular motifs, representing the harmonious balance of male and female power. Another favourite symbol is the Chinese character Xi, which means ‘double happiness'.
Word of mouth wedding invitations
In Hungary, it is traditional for the best man to visit each and every guest to invite them personally to the wedding. He'd recite a poem especially written for the occasion. Today, the bride and groom often do the visiting, to the delight of their close family and friends.
Shouting it out!
Prior to the invention of the printing press, weddings were typically announced by means of a town crier: a gentleman who would walk through the streets announcing in a loud voice the news of the day. Traditionally, anyone within earshot became part of the celebration. In some parts of Africa and the Middle East, this tradition is carried on today, with friends and neighbours invited to the ceremony by the town crier.
Inviting everyone in India
In India, weddings can include as many as 2,000 wedding guests. Everyone from family, friends and work colleagues are invited. Popular motifs for the wedding cards are images of Ganesh, the god of wisdom, or a doli, the traditional bridal carriage. Religious symbols from Hindu, Sikh, Islam and Christianity also feature frequently on Indian wedding cards.
As the world gets smaller and people find their other half on the other side of the world, many couples are creating new traditions by sending multicultural invitations and hosting ceremonies that honour important aspects of each other's culture. Invitations take on an even more special role, as they help guests understand what they can expect from the approaching celebration. Many invitations combine significant colours, like those of a country's flag, or display sacred text from each person's tradition. Some invitations are even bilingual, which is especially important when extended family members do not speak the language of their soon-to-be in-law.
Whether you embrace or avoid tradition, invitations remain an important part of sharing the celebration of marriage with friends and family.
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