Blending Multicultural Wedding Traditions

Portrait of bride hugging groom

So you found the one. You are beyond excited, but nervous about planning the big day. What happens when you and your soon-to-be spouse come from different cultural backgrounds? How can you both honor your heritage without offending your family or culture? What are some wedding reception ideas that reflect both your values?

At Adagio Djay Entertainment, we want to help you celebrate your heritage while having an incredible time at your wedding. We will give advice and assist planning throughout the process to ensure your day is unforgettable and honorable. Give us a call to see how we can help you create an amazing day.

Decide What is Important

Many people don’t think about it in definite terms, but weddings are a compilation of traditions, some big and some small. Each couple has their feelings and opinions on which traditions are important to display. This idea is the same when you are blending multicultural traditions.

When you are in the planning stages, sit down with your fiance and decide what aspects you want to highlight for your friends and family in attendance. Chances are, you each will only have a couple of non-negotiables. This way, you will have a starting point with things you know you have to include. Allow the other their opinions on what is essential, even if you don’t understand.

Some traditions are easy to incorporate in any ceremony. Others require a little more finesse. Having a list of things that you must include allows you to figure out the big stuff first, then arrange other aspects as you have space and time. A few examples of essential traditions that are easy to incorporate are jumping the broom, breaking the glass in Jewish wedding traditions, or lighting a unity candle.

Let Your Guests Taste and See Your Cultures

Two excellent and fun ways to incorporate your unique cultures is to serve food from your background and to decorate the wedding and reception with colors or themes that display your heritage. There are countless wedding reception ideas to incorporate both cultures.

A fusion food display is a tasty way to let all the guests in attendance experience both cultures. Offering an array of food from both heritages allows those that are unfamiliar with one of the cultures to experience something new and satisfies the more traditional in attendance.

Representing both cultures equally might be difficult if you are serving a full dinner, but there are ways to include both. If one culture is known for their long sit down dinner, serve something to represent that side for dinner and showcase the other culture for dessert. Don’t feel like you have to serve a traditional wedding cake, either. Serving a traditional dessert is a fantastic way to allow all in attendance to get a sweet taste of your culture.

Another creative way to let your guests experience both your cultures is with color. Many cultures, in particular, Asian cultures, place an enormous significance on colors. Indian weddings are known for bright and vibrant colors. You can also feature embroidery throughout your ceremony from dresses to draping to napkins to garments worn by the groom or parties.

It is also important to note that some cultures prefer not to use certain colors. Respect each other’s preferences. An example of a tradition that might want to be avoided is yellow roses which represented jealousy in Victorian times.

Indian marriage traditions.

Allow for Two Officiants

Another way to allow your guests to witness your culture more in-depth is with the officiant. If you both want to display your heritage, use two officiants. Allowing two officiants to stand in front of you and join you in marriage is a beautiful way to start your lives together. The officiant brings in more of your culture than any other aspect of your wedding.

Including two officiants allows both cultures to be recognized and celebrated. Furthermore, to be recognized as a legitimate marriage in certain cultures requires having an officiant preside over the wedding. The Catholic Church is an example of this requirement. Both you and your loved one having an officiant allows your marriage to be recognized in both traditions.

For this to be successful, you will want to have at least one meeting with both officiants together. They will need to understand what is essential and cannot be left out for each person involved. Thankfully, it is not uncommon for an officiant to work with another officiant. Most will be open to this.

Having two officiants is an excellent option if one or both of you have very traditional members of your family that will be upset without having this aspect recognized.

Muslim Wedding of a couple in the mosque.

Music and Dancing

An important aspect of just about every culture throughout history has been music and dancing. Cultures use dance to represent many parts of their history and beliefs. Music is used to pass down stories. Incorporating these things into your ceremony or reception is a fantastic way to showcase both cultures.

A unique way to bring your cultures together would be a special dance. Find a dance studio or instructor in your area that is willing to learn about both cultures and choreograph a dance highlighting both musical styles and dance moves. Or you can learn two dances together, one from each culture. These dances will allow all the guests to experience first hand your cultures.

Have the DJ or officiant explain the critical aspects of each dance or musical number. Whether you play a meaningful or historical song during your ceremony, or you bring in traditional dancers to your reception, the master of ceremonies can explain the significance and why you chose to display it. It would be an unforgettable experience for all in attendance to learn more about your heritage at your ceremony.

In conclusion

At Adagio DJ Entertainment, we know that planning a wedding is difficult. Add in the stress of pleasing your family, especially if those families are from different cultures, and you might be in for a long, arduous process. We want to help you through this planning phase and beautifully represent each culture. Give us a call and let us plan your perfect day where you join your lives and your heritage in front of the most important people in your lives.

 

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