Italian Wedding

A Few Traditions of an Italian Wedding

An Italian bride may unknowingly bring bad luck to her new life if she looks into a mirror while wearing her shoes and her dress. This is just one of many Italian wedding superstitions but other than that the ceremony is a once in a lifetime bucket-list experience.

Customs and Traditions

The superstition goes that the soon to be wife is not supposed to see her reflection on her wedding day. In case she’s itching to do so, she needs to remove an earring, one glove and one shoe before gazing into a mirror. 

Another says that the bride has to wear a gift, something that was borrowed, a new item, an old thing and something colored blue. She’s urged to wear a green cloth because it is believed to bring positive luck. The only gold on her should be the ring otherwise there will be bad luck.

To discourage evil spirits grooms resort to walking around with a piece of iron in their pocket and only the bride should wear white at an Italian traditional wedding. It is customary for the groom to pay for the bride’s bouquet.

La Serenata

This is when the groom serenades the bride at her parent’s home right outside her window. This is customarily regarded as a proposal ritual performed a day to the wedding and musicians assist the groom in his efforts to wake her.

There after the families gather over meals and music.  The couple is showered by rice as they emerge from church to represent being fertile. Then according to Italian culture, they have to cut split a log using a saw with two handles to signify cooperation in the union.

At The Reception

Here the best man cuts and sells the pieces of the husband’s tie. The couple interacts with every guest by walking to every guest’s table. This ritual is meant to extend hospitality to the guests.

Everyone gets to enjoy the best drinks especially limoncello and a buffet of Italian delicacies.

Friends play tricks on the couple for example, placing itching substances on their bed and leaving fish in their bathroom among many more.

Later the bride traditionally throws her flowers to unmarried women. It is believed that the one who grabs it will be married next.

The couple gets to share a white cake with the guests. The cake’s color signifies purity and at the top are statues of the bride and her groom.

La Giarrettiera

This is an Italian wedding custom where the groom removes a garter won by his bride. He then throws it at the guests. In case she didn’t wear it, he throws her right shoe instead.

At the end of the wedding ceremony, guests are thanked by being offered almonds coated with sugar. The gifts are called bomboniere and the sweets are known as confetti. One last superstition is that the sweets should either be five or seven because an odd number is believed to be lucky.

The Religious Ceremony

The groom is forbidden to see the bride until the D-day. He waits with a witness, mostly the best man at the altar for the bride who is walked to the altar by her father. After kissing his daughter and shaking hands with his soon to be son-in-law he goes takes his seat.

Then a Catholic priest takes over the ceremony if the couple is catholic through an event that involves the sacrament and rings. In other cases like a civil ceremony the couple will walk together into the venue.

The Main Purchase

Unlike an American wedding one of the expenses in a traditional Italian wedding is the purchase of the garter.


The best man or witness may culturally pay for the wedding rings. The groom is known to buy the bride’s bouquet.

The groom’s family pays for almost every wedding expense except for the bride’s garment, wedding invitations and flower decorations which are settled by the bride’s family.

The Attire

Grooms are known to wear decent suits or depending on preference a tuxedo. The suit could either be dark or a grey suit. Brides In some communities the bride wears a black dress but at typical Italian weddings she is in a white garment and ornaments similar to the ones of an American bride.


A traditional Italian wedding is not complete without a pasta delicacy. The food includes salami, wanda, veal, prosciutto among many more. Dessert is always some concoction of sugar and dough.

Drinks include all flavors of the best vintage wine, after all Italy is the home to the most quality vineyards in the world.

Among the fun dances performed is La Tarantella. It is basically all guests dancing as a circle and changing direction with the music’s change in tempo. This goes on until they all become dizzy.

The dance is meant for the guests to wish the newlyweds good luck in their new life.


A traditional Italian wedding is most enjoyable with its customs and the mystical superstitions are not meant to mar the event but make it a magical tale to be discussed by descendants way into the future.

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