Something Old, Something New: Bridging Tradition With
Your Bridal Look
Whether you're of Eastern European, African, Chinese, Japanese, Dutch,
or Irish heritage, or a combination of many backgrounds, if you're looking
to incorporate tradition into your wedding look, brides today have more
options than ever before.
While some religions are very strict when it comes to bridal wear, you
can still bend the rules and honor tradition. All it takes is a little
creativity... and research. For example, when Tina, a recent bride from
Norway living in New York, decided to find a headpiece, she went with
the traditional herb wreath but wore a modern up do. Michelle, a Chinese
bride, decided to add a modern spin to her wedding by wearing red and
gold crystal hairpins to match her ceremonial red bridal dress.
"I knew I wanted to incorporate the colors from the tartan kilt
my fiancé was wearing," said Jennifer, a Scottish bride, "so
I used blue and green flowers in my bouquet along with those colors in
my tiara." Catherine wanted to remember her Spanish heritage by wearing
a tiara with colored stones to match the embroidery to her Flamenco-style
gown. "I wanted a different twist on the white dress and veil thing,"
If you're searching for inspiration, first try looking at old wedding
photographs of grandparents and great grandparents and think of ways to
add your personal touch.
Some other ideas to jump-start your creativity:
- Use traditional colors or patterns in non-traditional ways, like using
flowers or colored stones in your headpiece or tiara. Use accents of
jade if you want to include some green, or rose quartz to capture the
look of cherry blossoms, or tanzanite stones to capture the look of
- Look at old magazines from your grandparent's era for beading and
accessory detail. Add Art Deco beading to your tiara or the front of
your dress, and match it with an antique beaded handbag from a flea
market or beaded shoe clips.
- Take your elderly relatives to tea and listen to their wedding stories.
Ask them about their favorite flowers, colors or traditions. You might
The point is to have fun mixing the old with new, and create your own
tradition. Think of your wedding look as a marriage between the past with
the present. Some day, an excited bride-to-be may find your picture and
try to capture her grandmother's look.