Is tradition something sacred to you, or do you reject it whenever you have the chance? Weddings are full of traditions that brides and grooms are chucking these days -- wearing veils, being given away, wearing colorful gowns instead of white -- for one reason or another. One such tradition that’s stood the test of time has to do with the bride’s dress.
It’s actually a double-layered tradition. Not only is the groom not supposed to see the white gown before it’s being paraded down the aisle, but the bride and groom aren’t supposed to see each other until you hear the chimes of the Wedding March.
It seems that the hiding of the wedding dress is just a stem of the custom for the bride and groom to avoid each other for the 24 hours leading up to the wedding -- it’s not derivative of much tradition itself. And why do some happy couples still insist of staying apart until they meet at the altar?
Back when weddings were still a business transaction rather than a romantic commitment, fathers would arrange marriages, paying dowries and selling livestock in exchange for the marrying off of their daughters. This was all when women were still considered the property of men, so obviously it has no bearing on today, but a gal’s father would do all he could to make sure his little girl got taken care of. In order to ensure that the groom didn’t get cold feet upon actually seeing the girl (it sounds horribly patriarchal, but men would refuse a bride were she not up to his standard of attractive), he’d keep the two apart as long as possible.
That’s also why brides would wear thick veils covering their faces: The groom wouldn’t lay eyes on his betrothed until literally minutes before he swore his life to her. Sneaky!
Nowadays, couples continue to honor this tradition -- the future husbands don’t typically accompany their fiancée to their bridal boutique appointments, for example -- since it adds a layer of excitement and anticipation to what a lot of people consider one of the most special days of their lives.
Others, though, think about the day practically. They want to wake up next to their love on the day of their wedding! They want to take their wedding photographs as early as possible, instead of rushing to get the perfect shot during cocktail hour. And they just don’t believe in the “bad luck” superstition.
Not like Monica.
Thus, new traditions are being born. Take the “first look” photoshoot, for example. Brides still want to give their grooms that “wow” factor when they first appear in their wedding gown -- just not during the ceremony. A groom will hang out in a field or something with their backs turned, and as the bride approaches, they’ll get the sweetest photos right before they head to the ceremony to say “I do.”
Begone, outdated traditions!