Weddings 101

Weddings 101

A guide to tradition & superstition

“Something Old Something New Something Borrowed Something Blue
And A Silver Sixpence in her shoe”

We’re all familiar with the traditional wedding rhyme Something old Something New … . But do you know its origin or what each “something” means for the bride?  The mantra originated in Lancashire as a Victorian – era rhyme.  As per the poem the bride must collect these five objects from family or friends these objects are usually heirlooms or family treasures handed down in a rite of passage  the bride must carry these items on her wedding day for good luck and to ward off evil. 

During Victorian times Something Blue usually referred to a garter, the blue and the  Something Old offered protection to the bride from the Evil Eye, a curse passed on through a malicious glare that could render the bride to be infertile.

Something Borrowed is thought to have come from the tradition of borrowing an undergarment from a woman who already had many healthy children, legend has it that wearing this undergarment would confuse the Evil Eye into to think the bride was already fertile and the cures would be thwarted.

Something New usually refers to the brides dress or her new husband, some grooms buy their bride to be a gift, commonly a piece of jewellery that’s presented to them on the morning of their wedding by a family member.

And a sixpence in her shoe, for many years the father of the bride would slip a sixpence into his daughters shoe before she walked down the aisle, the sixpence was a symbol of luck and to show that the father wished his daughter prosperity in her marriage.

“Something Old “stand for continuity; “Something New” shows optimism for the future; “Something Borrowed” symbolizes borrowed happiness; “Something Blue” represents purity, love and fidelity; “Silver Sixpence “ for good fortune and prosperity.

Irish Wedding Bell

Weddings 101

 A guide to tradition & superstition

 “An Ancient Celtic Wedding Tradition The Irish Make-Up Bell”



Did you know that the ringing of wedding bells all began with an Irish wedding tradition?   The ringing of church bells is a commonly practiced tradition and was historically used to ward off evil spirits and ensure a happy family life for the bride and groom, however this ancient custom dates back even further to a time before churches had bells – to the Irish Wedding Bell!!

The Irish Wedding Bell tradition began with the Irish family gifting the happy couple a set of bells once they had recited their wedding vows, when the vows had been recited the bells were then rung to ward off evil spirits. After they were married the wedding bells were kept in the couple’s home to remind them of the vows they had made to each other on their wedding day.

Still wondering why it’s called the Make-Up Bell?

Also known as the Bell of Truce the custom was for the newlyweds to place the bell in a prominent position in their home and if they should happen to have an argument one of them would ring the bell to call a truce and remind them of their wedding vows.  The chime of the bell is thought to keep evil spirits away and to restore harmony if the couple is fighting.  The sound of the bell is thought to remind the couple of their wedding vows, the bell is also rung when one partner is ready to “make up” and end any little quarrel, each partner takes a turn ringing the bell, lest an argument begin again.

Although its origins are steeped in old Irish superstition The Make-Up Bell is still an endearing traditional gift.  Many modern couples incorporate this tradition in to their wedding ceremony by having bells rung by guests after they vows are completed or at the reception to be used as kissing bells, some brides also wear tiny bell charms on their bracelets (a something new gift idea and the start of a beautiful tradition that can be gifted for generations).

Having an Irish Make-Up  wedding bell on display in your home offers a special keepsake marking the couple’s Irish heritage and the special vows exchanged on the day of their wedding, even if you're not Irish, having a make up bell handy in your home can help remind you of what's really important when you have a falling out.


 Next on Weddings 101 

Where did the bouquet toss come from and why do bridesmaids all wear the same colour ......


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