When people talk about traditional wedding dresses, they are usually referring to long, white, flowing gowns. However, traditional dresses are different in different cultures. If you're interested in wearing a wedding dress for a culture that your ancestors were a part of, you need to know what "traditional" means to different cultures. Here are some amazing dresses that you may have never seen before.
India is known for its bright-colored, flowing gowns. The wedding dresses for their culture are no different. A traditional Indian wedding dress is called a Lehenga. The beautiful thing about a Lehenga is that they come in a wide variety of colors. Unlike the wedding dresses in the United States, it's completely traditional to wear bright pink, bright blue, deep red, or just about any other color you can think of. If you like the white, you can purchase a white Lehenga. Many of them have a colored or black border or embroidery. Lehengas are often heavily embroidered and colorful.
A saree is another type of wedding gown that is popular in India. A saree is a more casual, lightweight type of dress. The saree is also colorful and usually leaves the midriff bare. Many people enjoy the saree because it's not as hot, which can be much more pleasing during a hot, Indian wedding. However, many other enjoy the Lehenga because the wedding might be the only chance they ever get to wear such a heavy dress.
African natives also dress in brightly colored wedding attire. Instead of just a wedding dress, the bride dresses in a give piece outfit. First, they put on a bou-bou (blouse) with a wrap skirt (iro). An iborum (shawl) is draped over the shoulder. A gele (head wrap) is placed on the bride's head with a traditional tuelle (veil) over it. An ancient form of money called cowry shells are sewn into the fabric for good luck. Some women wear three or four different outfits on the day of their wedding because changing outfits demonstrates beauty to the groom's family.
As most people know, kimonos are a popular clothing item in Japan. They have different types of kimonos for different occasions. For the wedding, they traditionally wear black and white, like Americans. The bride wears a white shiromuku kimono and the groom wears and black montsuki kimono. The reason the bride wears white in Japan is because she's symbolically taking on the colors of the family that she is marrying into. Once the wedding is over, the bride changes into a iro-uchikake kimono for the wedding reception. The iro-uchikake is brightly colored and comes in a variety of different patterns.
In the old days of Scotland, women wore an arisaid on their wedding day. An arisaid is a plaid, hooded dress that ties at the waist. They had to be pale or have a simple pattern. Only men were allowed to wear colorful attire that represented the clan; otherwise, the women were treated as harlots. Scottish weddings are much more laid back these days. Women aren't shunned for wearing whatever they want. However, it's important to wear your own clan colors for your wedding. Scottish women tend to wear a traditional white wedding dress when they get married. However, there is a beautiful tradition where women wear a tartan corset over their wedding dress that represents their clan. Another choice is wearing a cape with the tartan, along with beautiful broaches and pins.
Wedding dresses are amazing all around the world. Different cultures have different styles of dresses, even if it's only slightly. Even if you live in the United States, you can celebrate your heritage by wearing a traditional wedding dress for your own family's culture.