Viva Brazil!

Brazilian brides and grooms often samba into the wee hours

Brazilians are famous for their huge, spirited receptions. Some favorite traditions:

1. The bride writes the names of unmarried friends on scraps of paper, and sews or tapes them on the hem of her gown. This brings the pals luck in love.

2. During the engagement, the bride wears a gold band on her right ring finger, engraved with the wedding date. At the wedding, a flower girl presents the band (plus his) to the bride and groom, and they put them on each other&'s left ring fingers.

3. The bride hosts a cha de panela (casserole tea). Friends bring kitchen gifts.

4. Instead of bridesmaids and groomsmen, wedding guests who are couples, married and unmarried, gather at the altar.

5. Receptions feature a mesa dos doces (sweets table), including bem-casado (well-married) shortbread cookies. A popular drink: the caipirinha, made with lime and sugarcane rum.

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