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Colombian Wedding

The Preparation, Expectation and All That you Need to Know

Weddings have a special place in our hearts and in our lives, irrespective of your religion, race, and culture or where you come from on this planet. The diversity of weddings is what makes them unique. The wedding preparation is complex, and in many instances, takes in a lot of detail, planning, considerations before the day becomes alive.  In as much as the preparation, arrangement, and delivery of weddings can be daunting to the spirit, body, and soul of the organizers; everything is worth the hustle and bustle and the end of the day. The bride and groom need to get the best day of their lives, so everything needs to fall into place when they officiate their marriage entirely.

The wedding planners have to put every little detail into consideration to execute a perfect wedding and deliver something that people will remember for days to come. The essential things to consider during the planning of weddings include the religious, cultural, and societal aspects and expectations of the wedding's location. For the bride and groom that are looking to set up and participate in a Colombian wedding, then it will interest you to learn some facts and get to know details about this unique wedding.

The Wedding Dress Code

Many people would love to make a fashion statement during wedding processions, including the evening receptions. The diverse cultures around the world dictate different dress codes befitting any wedding, and the dress code varies everywhere. Colombia enjoys a tropical, humid climate that is a significant factor in determining how you should get dressed when attending a wedding.

The Colombian wedding traditions require men to put on a "guayabera" white shirt with matching khaki pants. This dressing code is followed by most male attendants of the wedding, inclusive of the groom. The shirts are readily available in many stores in Colombia and also on different online platforms. A common practice during weddings in Colombia is for the men to wear linen or formal suits, a shirt with matching trousers, shoes. The tie in many men's attire is usually optional.

The ladies are expected to wear long dresses, a cocktail dress or a fancy skirt and top during the Colombian wedding. Colombian women take great pride in their appearance, especially on how they dress. The bride usually adorns a mantilla combine with flowers, shrouding her from everyone’s glare.

The Religious and Traditional Aspects

Since a majority of the Colombian population practice the Christian faith, and particularly Catholics, there is a significant similarity in weddings with other countries around the world featuring catholic-based weddings. Many wedding processions in Colombia follow the dictates of the Catholic faith, with the arrangement, organization, and ordinances following a strict Christian code, albeit with a little mixture of the Colombian traditions.

The priest is an integral part of any wedding in Colombia, with some wedding ceremonies performed in the church, although others take place in selected venues.

In many instances, just before the wedding, the groom usually surprises the bride with a sweet serenade, performed at the bride's home or a selected intimate location.  Although the serenade is an informal gesture, it usually signals the start of the wedding procession.

Another critical aspect of the Colombian wedding is the bridal shower, which usually takes place before the wedding. During the bridal showers, the mother to the wife-to-be often hands over to her daughter's precious and valued items to take with her into her new life. In many instances, the would-be newlyweds receive lots of silver gifts ranging from plates, candle-stands among many other items.

The Wedding Procession

 The Columbian wedding is usually very colorful, with flowers playing a significant role in the wedding décor. Colombia is globally renowned for its sheer variety of gorgeous flowers, and it would be a grave mistake not to include them during the wedding day.

As stated earlier, many Colombian weddings correlate the Catholic faith, paying huge tribute and homage to Christianity. Usually, before the priest officiates the marriage, a ceremony known as Las Arras is performed. During this customary ceremony, the priest blesses thirteen holy coins, which symbolize the apostles of Jesus. After the blessing, the groom exchanges the coins with the bride, signifying the groom's willingness to start life anew with the bride.

The Las Arras is followed by another essential custom known as the Candle ceremony. The Candle ceremony involves the bride and groom lighting their candles, after which they light the third candle together using the already lit candles. The bride and groom then together blow off their candles in the presence of the third candle, signifying spiritual bondage of their union.

Merrymaking- Fiesta, Dancing, and Eating

After the wedding procession and unification of the newlyweds, the next activity on the agenda is having fun, something that Colombians are good at indulging in. The Colombian men are particularly outgoing during the merrymaking session, as they showcase their dancing skills, with reverberating traditional drums and music playing in the background. The most common dancing styles during weddings include the globally renowned salsa. Other styles include merengue, Villano, and Cumbia.

Other traditions that are part of the merry-making involve all the men present removing their belts, with the one having the largest belt being crowned the winner! Another common practice during the partying is all single men available, placing their shoes beneath the bride's dress. The bride then picks only one shoe, with the owner receiving the honor as the designated next groom!

The dancing is usually accompanied by drinking and eating, a feast befitting a king. The meals typically include traditional Colombian cuisine that includes chicken, pork, potatoes, and rice. The feasting often extends into the wee hours of the night, with revelers meeting up the next day to reminisce at the wedding.

The Colombian wedding is a mixture of religion, traditions, and culture; all brought together for one auspicious moment filled with fun and activity. The Christian religion, and the Catholic faith, in particular, are at the center of many Columbia-themed weddings. If you are looking for fun, vibrant colors, paying homage to tradition and culture, then a wedding, the Colombian style is the way to go!

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