Italian Wedding Traditions

Every country and ethnicity of people has their own set of wedding tradition and the Italians are no different. There are a wide range of traditions that many Italian weddings follow to some degree. Some of these traditions deal with the gifts given to the happy couple and others deal with favors and other factors of the ceremony or reception. Below are some of the most common Italian wedding traditions that are still observed.

Wedding Confetti

After a couple has been married, Italian tradition states that a mix of confetti paper be thrown to symbolize the happy couple being showered with money and good luck for the rest of their lives.

Wedding Favors

There are two different Italian wedding traditions that deal with wedding favors. One is for the married couple and says that guests are to return all favors that the married couples’ family has done for them. They set up a table and receive the favors or gifts at the wedding. Sometimes a groom’s tie is divided into sections and sold to guests and the money is given to the couple for their honeymoon as well.

Almonds covered in white sugar are a traditional wedding favor for guests and are put together five in a bag. Even numbers are bad luck, so the almonds are usually packaged in groups of five.

The Tradition of Tying the Knot

The tradition of a couple tying the knot together is symbolized in traditional Italian weddings by a tied bow that is placed over the doorway of the church or Cathedral. This literally symbolizes the knot being tied.

Impromptu Toasts

During the wedding reception, male guests that are attending will randomly yell out their congratulations for the newlyweds. This is always followed by impromptu toasts and applause from all the guests, which adds to the already present merrymaking.

The Passing of the Purse

Another Italian wedding tradition designed to help the bride and groom get started on their life together is the passing of the purse. The bride will go around to the guests with her purse in hand, collecting donations for her and the groom.

The Traditional Italian Wedding Dance

The Tarantella is a traditional dance that has been done in Italy for hundreds of years. Long ago, wedding receptions would last sometimes even until the next day. This traditional group dance is done at every traditional Italian wedding and features the men holding their jackets open to the side. This originally started because they were to show weapons that they had to fellow dancers since it was rude to dance with concealed weapons on you.

There are many Italian wedding traditions that are upheld and carried out in weddings even to this day. Some of the most common of these traditions are listed above. Steeped in history and symbolism, it is an honor to your heritage to include such traditions in your special day.