Croatian Wedding

A Guide on the Preparations, Traditions, and Customs 

A wedding is one of the customs that we hold dear to our hearts, passed down from generation to generation. Weddings signal two people coming together, a bride and groom as they officiate their union as per the laid out traditions and customs. The wedding preparation process is usually complex, with many factors put into consideration to ensure that the event conforms to societal, religious, and customary dictates. Every aspect of a wedding is unique to specific religions, customs, and traditions around the world.

One of the most captivating and sensational weddings around the world that you should look out for is the Croatian wedding. Tucked within the central and southeast parts of Europe, Croatia is a country with a rich tradition and unique customs which they showcase in their daily activities like weddings. The traditions of the Croatian people are a combination of Mediterranean and Eastern traditions. Of particular interest is the place of this vast history on their wedding traditions.

If you are looking to take part in a Croatian wedding, then get ready to be part of a colorful wedding procession that proudly displays their traditions and customs. Some of the aspects of the Croatian wedding have similarities to weddings in other places in the world, for instance, the United States. A majority of the Croatian population profess the Christian faith, and particularly Catholics, and this has a significant influence on every aspect of their weddings. The weddings usually take place at a pre-selected venue, either outdoors or indoors, with some people preferring to take exchange their vows in church.

The Pre-Wedding Preparations and Customs

The pre-wedding preparations in Croatia come with a lot of planning and unique customs that you should expect, with many of the pre-festivities taking place at the groom's home. Friends and family are officially invited to the wedding, with a rosemary branch sent with the invitations. The rosemary is considered a welcome sign in Croatia. The rosemary branch, in some instances, comes decorated with the country's flag colors. As a custom, the guests should leave a donation in the baskets once they get their rosemary branch, money used to start the newlyweds on their marriage journey.

One of the most amusing wedding customs in Croatia is known as the false bride. During the event, the groom, accompanied by friends, visits the bride's home and asks for her hand in marriage. After knocking on the door, one of the family members opens it, but they will be hesitant to hand over the bride easily. The bride's family then tries to hoodwink the groom by giving out a false bride to the groom. The process involves handing out a rugged doll adorned in a wedding gown, or giving out another false bride to the groom. After going round in circles, the groom is finally handed his bride, and they head to the wedding procession.

The Wedding Procession

The wedding day in Croatia is a mixture of excitement and anticipation to the bride and groom, family, and friends who come to witness the wedding nuptials. The weddings usually take place in the evening, with guests congregating at the selected venues. On their way to the wedding event, a banner holder, locally known as the Barjaktar, takes charge of the wedding procedure. The banner holder carries and waves the unique Croatian flag as the bride and groom match towards the wedding venue.

The bride comes dressed in a white wedding dress that signifies purity with her face covered with vail. The groom wears a suit with a matching suit while the male guests come wearing colorful clothes and ladies' outstanding dresses. The wedding is usually officiated with a priest, pastor or deacon, as the bride and groom exchange vows. Another important tradition is throwing rice to the newlyweds, or cover them with flowers and bursting bubbles as a sign of good luck.

The Wedding Ceremony

The Croatian wedding reception is full of fun and entertainment, as the guests, the groom, and bride make merry. A lot of dancing, eating and drinking served aplenty is part of the wedding ceremony that people enjoy. The food is full of traditional Croatian meals that include goulash, cuttlefish risotto, and peka. One of the best food to look up to include the special wedding cake that is usually served during the reception, in most cases, at midnight. Some of the wedding parties take place in hotels or restaurants where the guests gather after the church event.

The attendees of the wedding ceremony participate in traditional dancing and singing as they enjoy tantalizing meals, an event that takes place deep into the night, with some extending into the morning. Some of the most popular wedding songs in Croatia include Sigurni, provaj, Vjeruj mi, and mijesto za dvoje. The guests have a chance to dance with the bride, and in the process, offer gifts. Gifts from the guests are usually handed after midnight during the wedding reception, with most of the presents being cash.

The Croatian wedding is unique and special, with every aspect a mixture of the traditions and culture of the people. The wedding presents an outstanding event that brings together friends and family, with a lot of entertainment and enjoyment. If you are looking for a wedding ceremony that is catchy, interesting and full of unique customs and traditions, then check out the Croatian wedding!

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