Create a Personal Ceremony

Continued (page 2 of 2)

Flower Exchange
What it is: The bride gives a flower from her bouquet to her mother upon walking in, and to her new mother-in-law before walking out.
What to Know: If the gesture feels genuine, go for it; otherwise, it can seem forced. Adding a quick hug and a few words cuts the schmaltz.

Breaking the Glass
What it is: In Jewish tradition, the groom steps on a glass. The shattering symbolizes, among other things, life’s mix of joy and sadness.
What to Know: Use thin glass (colored is best if you're planning to save the pieces) and wrap it in a cloth napkin so the shards don't fly.

What it is: In this ritual, based on a Celtic tradition, the hands of the bride and groom are tied together to symbolize the joining of lives.
What to Know: This ritual isn't universally allowed at religious ceremonies. Check with your officiant and specific house of worship.

Jumping the Broom
What it is: In this African-American ritual, a couple jumps over a broom to symbolize sweeping away the old and starting anew.
What to Know: This custom dates to the days when slaves weren't allowed to marry. It represented "jumping" into the bonds of domesticity.

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