“Something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue.”
This long-standing tradition has been a part of western weddings for a long time. As you flip through wedding albums in real life or online wedding photography in the Greensboro area, you will find pictures featuring this tradition.
For most people, this tradition is a practice of good luck. Each item holds some meaning that brings luck to the one wearing these. In the past, it is usually the brides who carry on this tradition.
But now, most couples practice this tradition, regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation.
Even if you don’t believe that these good luck charms do anything, they can be tokens of love on your wedding day that your loved ones can gift you. Besides, they give an opportunity for some great wedding photography.
Where does the tradition come from?
This wedding tradition stems from an old English folk rhyme, detailing the things a bride should wear to bring her good luck for her new wedded life. The most common version of this wedding rhyme is as follows:
and a sixpence in her shoe.
This version of the rhyme is called the Lancashire version. It was first recorded in the 1876 English newspaper. The last line about the sixpence is not true to the ancient customs as it was added in the Victorian era.
However, it became a tradition all across the nation. In 1905, this tradition crossed the Atlantic Ocean and was introduced to the U.S. through Emily Post’s novel, Purple and Fine Linen.
Since then, it has been adopted by various cultures as a wedding tradition. Even the royalty tends to keep up with it.
Each item has some significance and is said to bring good luck to the bride.
In ancient time, the Evil Eye was thought to render brides barren. The something old is said to ward off that Evil Eye and protect the bride and any future children she would have.
For modern couples, the “something old” signifies continuity and remembrance. Usually, couples wear a sentimental piece of jewelry, clothing item or other accessory or heirlooms belonging to an old relative.
Something new signifies walking into a new life of wedded bliss with optimism for the future. In the old days, and even now, this tradition is the easiest to check off the list. Typically, the “something new” would be the dress.
If it’s not, anything else you buy new for your attire can be counted as your something new.
According to an 1898 English magazine, the something borrowed was something the bride would borrow from another happily married woman. This was thought to bring luck to the marriage.
In the magazine, it was mentioned that is would be a piece of undergarment. However, that doesn’t really sound appealing these days. Now, something borrowed can be anything; from jewelry to hair accessories, shoes, ties, cufflinks, etc.
The superstitious believe the blue color as a sign of fidelity. It was also thought to ward off the Evil Eye to protect the couple’s fertility. Traditionally, brides would wear a blue garter underneath their dress.
But you can change it up by adding a hint of blue in your wedding dress, wear blue shoes, blue socks, bow ties, hair accessories or have blue flowers in your bouquet. If the color is not your favorite, but you still want to keep the tradition, you can hide a small blue ribbon inside your dress like Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle did.
Sixpence in Shoe
As we mentioned previously, the tradition of the sixpence was added later on. The silver British coin was a symbol was a sign of prosperity and wealth and was usually worn in the left shoe.
You can add an equivalent coin of your local currency in your shoe if you like. That would definitely make for some interesting wedding photos, but you can skip this one!
In the end, it’s up to you to follow this tradition or not. You may not believe in the superstition, but it can give you a chance to add some sentimental items in your wedding.
Doug Burke Wedding Photography will capture the significance of each moment so you can look back on them for years to come. Greensboro, Winston Salem, Oak Ridge, Summerfield and beyond. Call us at 336 486 9932 and let us capture each detail of your big day.