There are many traditions, rituals and customs that people uphold and perform in connection with weddings. Some of these have now lost their relevance in modern society and sometimes we are not even sure why we undertake them. However we continue to perform them for fun, family tradition and superstition, especially as many of them have derived from efforts to bestow the happy couple with good luck.
One such tradition stems from an old English rhyme concerning items that the bride should wear or carry to bring her luck on her special day.
and a silver sixpence in her shoe.
The full version of the rhyme includes the line about a silver sixpence which sadly sometimes gets forgotten. The rhyme is said to originate in Victorian times although some of the traditions are thought to be much older.
This represents the link with the bride’s family and friends from the past. The object is commonly an heirloom such as jewellery or a garter and is passed on to offer good luck from a happily married woman.
This item symbolises a happy and prosperous new life. Often this item is the wedding dress.
This lent item is to remind the bride that her friends and family will be there for her whenever she needs their help. The borrowed object must be returned to ensure good luck.
This item symbolises faithfulness and loyalty. The colour blue often represented purity in olden times. Sometimes the bride’s garter is the blue item or you could add a pop of colour to your outfit in the form of blue shoes or blue nail varnish. This item usually leads to great levels of creativity!
And a silver sixpence in her shoe:
Then comes the last line that is so often missed out. This part of the rhyme is about placing a silver sixpence in the bride’s left shoe to ensure the couple have wealth in the future (both financial and happiness). It is thought that this tradition came about in Elizabethan times when the Lord of the Manor would have often given a sixpence as a wedding gift to any brides that lived on his land. It also harks back to times when the bride’s parents would offer a dowry.
Whichever customs and traditions you decide to incorporate into your big day, we wish you health, wealth, happiness and all the very best in your married life.