Are you looking for a way to incorporate some Victorian-era charm into your wedding? We've gathered some of the most unique and meaningful Victorian wedding traditions that you can use to inspire and personalize your special day. From the bride's attire to the ceremony, these timeless customs will help you create a truly one-of-a-kind celebration.
Planning a wedding is a very personal thing! It’s a day to celebrate the coming together of two people and the things that they love. Whether that means rocking a black wedding dress to turn tradition on its head, or looking back on some Victorian traditions for inspiration! Here are some of our favourite Victorian wedding traditions that will give your wedding a unique touch.
And by dress, we mean the many layers that makeup a Victorian wedding ensemble – perfect for a winter wedding! Turn heads with a sexy corset on your wedding day. (Did you know that many Victorian ladies wore two corsets at once on their wedding day – one outer respectful corset and one for lingerie?) Don’t forget to provide that typical Victorian poof with plenty of fluffy petticoats – the more the merrier – and of course, a train and veil!
There are so many amazing designers creating modern Victorian ensembles. Don’t be afraid to opt for a dress in any other colour than white. It was only in the Victorian period that white dresses became staples, due to Queen Victoria (who also set many of the mourning traditions). Red, gold, blue and green were all acceptable colours for weddings!
For the Groomsmen
Give the men of the wedding their own touch of tradition by including top hats, jabots and wrist cuffs in the dress code or in the outfits of the Groomsmen.
A Wreath of Flowers & Veil
Flowers were an important part of Victorian life. Just as much as the way in which they used their fan (fan language) to communicate their wish for a relationship with another, the kind of flowers you choose can say a lot about your future marriage! Blossoms and roses were some favourites that represented a “happy path through life.”
Not to mention, almost equally as important as the dress in some parts of the Victorian period is the veil which was often longer than the dress itself and connect to a crown of blossoms or roses, which were also considered good luck.
Walking on a Carpet of Blossoms
Not a fan of floral motifs or the so-called overrated flower crown, you could take inspiration straight out of Victorian tradition by walking on a carpet of blossoms. Ladies would walk this carpet on entrance into the church or up the aisle.
Again, if floral motifs aren’t quite your thing, you could always take inspiration from the darker side of the Victorians. Their well known mourning practices, such as the mourning veil and bonnet. Traditionally mourning veils are crepe fabric, very dark and heavy. But you could certainly substitute this with a beautiful lace and silk to make it more wedding appropriate.
Dropping the Ring!
There’s always a scene in romantic comedies when the wedding ring is dropped and lost by some bumbling groomsmen who the bride officially hates. But in Victorian times that was considered good luck. It showed that all evil spirits surrounding the pair and their matrimony had been “shaken out”.
Embroidered Silk Handkerchiefs as Keepsake and Place card
An embroidered silk handkerchief was part of a wedding day outfit for a Victorian lady. This transfers perfectly into a beautiful piece of table decoration. Instead of guests finding their seat by reading place cards, they find it by reading each seats embroidered handkerchief which they then get to keep as a memory of your big day!
Snakes and Flowers and Oh My!
It might be hard to imagine but in Victorian times snakes and flowers were symbols of romance and love and were common motifs for Victorian wedding rings. It’s understandable if you don’t want a wedding ring with a huge, gasping snake on it, but these motifs create beautiful imagery for wedding decor such as plates and the stem of glasses. Snakes are after all dark, dangerous and mysterious!
There you have it, the ultimate list of Victorian wedding inspiration! Are you a fan of the Victorian lifestyle? How would you incorporate it into your wedding? And more importantly, would you find inspiration from the floral and pure Victorian wedding, or the dark and intense Victorian mourning? Let us know below!