This tradition has seen use in plenty of cultures around the world but the rèiteach has its own unique traits, unlike other countries. This was believed to bring good luck, both to the people that managed to eat a piece of the bridescake and to the couple themselves. Bridal Bouquet. Isle of Lewis, Isle of Harris & Stornoway. From wedding dress to wedding rings, the service, reception decor and much more, the Scottish flavor and style is very much in play. A … Weddings in Scotland Whether you want a stunning backdrop for the big moment when you pop the question, a romantic castle to tie the knot in or an island retreat for the honeymoon of a lifetime, … At Gleddoch Hotel and Spa, we are proud to call Scotland home. It is a form of ceremony found in many places and cultures, perhaps rarely nowadays, but I keep alive a Scottish style of it to benefit both the natives of Scotland … In return, the groom will pay for the bride’s wedding dress – an exchange of attire for the special day. Bagpipes are one of those instruments that people can’t help but associate with Scotland, which explains why it’s our national instrument. Whilst not as flashy or bold as some of the other wedding traditions, this choice can be a little one to keep in the back of your mind to help make that day a little more Scottish. Site by i3MEDIA, T: +44(0)1475 540 711 As another slice of trivia, the Luckenbooth is also meant to make an appearance after the birth of the couple’s first newborn, where it is pinned to the child’s blanket as a token of good luck. The Luckenbooth is a brooch which is usually gifted from groom to bride before the wedding as a show of love and dedication to the marriage. As a Seanachaidh or Tradition Bearer of the Highlands, one of our many wedding customs that I do my best to keep alive is Handfasting Weddings. The Wedding Walk is the formal march taken by the wedding party to the church. A Penny Wedding is an ideal solution for those after a traditional yet budget-friendly wedding. Say your vows over the original anvil used by the ‘Blacksmith Priest’ when presiding over clandestine unions. Gleddoch is an independently owned hotel resort, beautifully located overlooking the Clyde Estuary. The wedding scramble is still a beloved tradition in parts of Scotland. Iconic Ben Nevis needs to be top of your Scottish to-do list. In this guide, we’re going to introduce you to 20 of our favourites; whether it’s the horseshoe tradition or one of the many Scottish dances, you’ll find plenty of inspiration for your special day right here. Clocks are traditionally given to the happy couple by the best man in the north east while the maid of honour gives them a tea set. A sprig of white heather hidden in the bride's bouquet is a popular good luck token in the Scottish Borders. There are now over 4,000 weddings a year at Gretna in Scotland's "wedding … Afterwards, the same is repeated, except the quaich is given to the groom by the bride’s parents. They are usually made of silver and engraved with two hearts combined. This is a great way of starting your wedding in a typically Scottish manner. A quaich is a two-handled cup. Alternatively, get in touch with our dedicated team and we will endeavour to offer bespoke advice tailored to your needs. Following some predetermined steps, they complete the dance and repeat. Surprisingly, a majority of the traditions the Celts celebrated for their weddings have found their way into other cultures, and even Pagan Celtic traditions were transformed into Christi… The Quaich, a two handled loving cup, is an ancient Scottish tradition that seals the bond of two people, and marks the blending of two families. This continues until the only couple left are the bride and groom who have the last dance. This link with the Scottish identity has made heather a popular addition to any Scottish wedding, particularly in rural settings where it can be plucked fresh from the ground. This would usually occur the day before the wedding, though the tradition is less common now. Particularly popular in Aberdeenshire and Angus, the Sixpence in the Shoe tradition is specifically for the bride. Typically, the Grand March is the first dance that occurs during the wedding. You can’t go wrong. The word banns comes ... Show of presents. Traditionally, this custom was very physically challenging for the groom, depending on how sympathetic his betrothed was. A sixpence in the bride's shoe has long been a tradition in Aberdeenshire and Angus. In many cases, the rèiteach would involve the groom’s friend asking for the bride’s hand in marriage, rather than the groom himself. There’s a lot more to it than just wearing a kilt! All rights reserved. VisitScotland uses cookies to enhance your experience on our website. Scottish weddings are rich in tradition, and the happy couple have some unique pre-wedding rituals to take part in too! Some choose to just conduct the blackening on the groom, others strip the groom before beginning and the list of items stuck to the couple can be endless, from treacle and fruit to feathers and flour. The Traditional Grand March is often the first dance to take place at a wedding reception. At Gleddoch, our picturesque setting and luxury facilities have made us a popular venue for tying the knot, which means we’ve witnessed countless Scottish wedding traditions at work. There are many traditional Scottish dances, each with their own unique traits and flairs. The exact reasoning behind this tradition isn’t clear, though it could be to ensure that even after the union, the couple has what they need to provide for friends, family and relatives if they visit. Wedding cakes are a common feature of Scottish weddings today but in earlier times there would be a ‘bridescake’. This might be linked to ensuring the bride is clean or pure and typically, an older married woman in the community or wedding party will wash and dry the bride’s feet as she sits on a stall. To conclude, the Lang Reel is another traditional Scottish wedding dance. In short, they could make a profit from their own wedding – it’s hard to see a downside when you put it like that. Gretna Green Famous Blacksmiths Shop is where couples have been coming to tie the knot since 1754. This is a great choice if you want to hail back to classic traditions, even if they aren’t as common today. Thanks to its romantic wedding traditions, the Scottish village of Gretna Green is one of the most popular wedding destinations in the world. A traditional Scottish Wedding Scotland is a popular place for young English couples to get married since, in Scotland, parents' permission is not required if both the bride and groom are old enough to … The brooch is traditionally made of silver and regularly incorporates heart symbols or engravings, as you’d expect of a wedding gift between the betrothed. Popular films and media have immortalised the tradition of throwing the bouquet over the brides’ shoulder to be caught by the unmarried women in the party, symbolising who would be married next. Many Scottish weddings use the Scottish Quaich, or ‘Loving Cup’, which is a … Tradition plays a big part in weddings. Present day Scottish wedding traditions have their origins as far back as … Crying the Banns. The Scottish Quaich. To secure good luck it was traditionally thought that the wedding procession should cross running water twice. Typically, this tradition is thought to bring good luck and prosperity to the newly-wed couple – a harmless and fun addition to any wedding. A live band, complete with bagpipes, of course, begins playing a tune and the bride and groom face each. We will still be contactable during this time via telephone or via email at info@gleddoch.com. The sark itself is the shirt worn by the groom during the wedding and traditionally, this is paid for by the bride. It may sound unlikely, but feet-washing is a custom that originates in Fife and Dundee & Angus. The old Scottish tradition, ‘the Speerin’ is the process of asking a girl’s father for her … Occurring across Scotland but particularly in Fife and Dundee and Angus, feet washing is a common wedding tradition. The maid of honour (or chief bridesmaid) and the best man join in, followed by both sets of in-laws, and finally the guests! However, in Scottish tradition, one of the most familiar features of the wedding bouquet is the presence of heather. Kilts are one of the most iconic parts of traditional Scottish attire and are instantly recognisable, playing a major role in the Scottish identity. This is meant to serve as a good luck charm, ensuring prosperity throughout her marriage to come. To start with, we will look at gift-giving traditions rather than those relating to the ceremony itself. Scotland has some holidaysthat are unique to the country, as well as some that are shared with the rest of the world. Why not stay in a castle, a lighthouse or on a working farm? Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice. The handfasting ceremony has its roots in ancient Celtic tradition and dates as far back as 7000 B.C. Gleddoch boasts 75 bedrooms, an 18 hole championship golf course an elegant banqueting room and a luxury Imperia Spa. The Lang Reel is a traditional dance which happens in the fishing communities in the north east of Scotland. This custom focuses on the unification of clans, symbolised by pinning a rosette or sash of each individual’s clan on the other party. FEET WASHING… Guests bring their own food and drinks to the reception allowing the couple to splurge on the wedding cake. BEFORE THE CEREMONY: LUCKENBOOTH. In the 21st century, the Scottish wedding is an intricate blend of ancient highland tradition mixed in with modern, streamlined rites. The bridescake is a baked good, typically a scone or shortbread, which is snapped over the bride’s head as she enters the church or wedding venue. There are huge variations in this Scottish wedding tradition depending on location and preference. Lovely! Many of them have rich stories behind them and others have meanings unknown. The Wedding Sark is one of the more unique wedding gift traditions because it is gifted from the bride to the groom, rather than from a relative or family member to the couple. Giving gifts to the bride and groom is something which occurs all across the world but the Scottish do have some unusual choices which you may want to include in your own celebration. Following the Government announcement on Tuesday 17th November,  the hotel and spa will be temporarily closing from 6pm on Friday 20th November  until 11th December. The tradition states that the father of the bride should place a silver sixpence into his daughter’s shoe. Dating back to the 19th Century, these weddings were common in rural Scotland as celebrations could occur over multiple days, could even leave the newly-weds with excess money. At Gleddoch, we are proud of our Scottish heritage and are constantly blessed by the incredible views and beautiful scenery that Scotland has gifted us with. The wedding sark tradition is simple enough to achieve, making a great starting point if you want your day to feel as Scottish as possible. Ours is a country filled with history and tradition which adds to our unique identity, ranging from the ways in which we cook our food to the passion and patriotism we display at sporting events. Find more advice on exploring Scotland during Covid-19 on our dedicated page. The golf course and driving range will remain open at this time. Current restrictions will remain under constant review and we will continue to update as these are released. If the groom or his party don’t have Scottish heritage but still want to wear a kilt, they can opt to choose a tartan design from some of the most common options, it’s just a matter of exploring what is available and making a choice. On the wedding day, things can become hectic and busy, leaving little time for earnest conversations and special moments in private. F: +44(0)1475 540 201 The wedding bouquet is a very recognisable part of any marriage ceremony. The groom pays for the wedding dress in return. Creeling the Bridegroom involves the groom carrying a large basket of rocks and walking through or around the village, though, he would have to continue walking until his fiancée came out of her house and kissed him. © 2020 VisitScotland. 'Crying the Banns' is the original wording for the act of announcing an impending church wedding in Scotland. Scottish treat kilts with their family’s tartan colours as formalwear, meaning that the groom, as well as most major male figures at a Scottish wedding, should be wearing their kilt. Scottish wedding traditions date back to the 13th century, when the church would announce a wedding for three successive Sundays in a practice called the “banns of marriage.” The tradition lasted over 600 years, but it’s been replaced by a simple announcement of the upcoming wedding … Tying the Knot Traditional Celtic hand tying. In the same way as the best man gifts clocks, the Maid of Honour is often expected to gift a tea set. The pinning of the tartan holds the most weight in all Scottish weddings but can take place in other ceremonies too. Regardless, any serious Scottish wedding needs kilts to complete it. The groom’s parents begin by handing the quaich, filled with a dram of brandy or whisky, to the bride – who drinks from it. This would be made by the bride’s mother and was often made of scone or shortbread. The traditional Burns Supper, Hogmanay and St Andrews Day celebrations are still very much a part of Scottish culture but the Scots are now joined on these special days by Scots at heart across the globe. Once successful, all parties meet and food and drink are served in celebration. 'Auld Lang Syne', a traditional Scottish … During the blackening, friends and relatives of the couple will capture them, cover them in an assortment of messy, adhesive items and then parade them through the streets for all to see. Primarily occurring in the North East of Scotland, blackening is a wedding custom that usually takes place before the wedding day rather than after the ceremony itself. The ‘wedding scramble’ is traditional in most parts of Scotland. Traditional Scottish Wedding Gifts. This traditional can also be extended to the families themselves, where everyone drinks from the cup in a show of unification. It’s simple and meaningful, with a distinctly Scottish feel. Scottish Wedding Traditions, Celebrations, and Superstitions Pre-Wedding Traditions. A subtle but great choice for any Scottish wedding. While we typically think of green as the color associated with Ireland, it was not … Here is a look at some of the best Scottish Wedding blessings and toasts that can be shared and recited on … To start with, we will look at gift-giving traditions rather than … Heather is a wild plant, rich in earthy colours and vibrance which grows all across Scotland. E: info@gleddoch.com. Convincing friends and family that this is a traditional Scottish wedding custom might be a challenge though so it’s essential to always consult guests. The quaich sees use in Scottish weddings as a method of unifying families and welcoming one another’s newfound bond. One of the best parts about this Scottish wedding custom is that it is much more personal than many of the others mentioned. You do not need to visit Scotland to have your very own traditional Scottish Wedding. These coins are for the children to scramble over and collect, hence the name of the wedding custom. The banns refers to an announcement made in church of a couple's intention to marry. Some regions of Scotland, particularly in the North East, have a Scottish wedding tradition where the best man gifts the couple a clock as a token of good luck. This is believed to bring about financial good … The idea behind this is that if friends and family make personal contributions it will allow for a grander ceremony and celebration. An affordable and eye-catching choice. Short and simple, this is a more subtle Scottish wedding custom. Visit my Scottish Weddings page to find out how to add some Scottish … This was thought to bring good luck to the couple. All we know is that it is now more of a game than a sombre or serious affair, though, make sure everyone involved has agreed to take part before you begin. Something Blue. The tradition of eloping to Gretna Green dates back to 1754 when Lord Hardwicke’s marriage act meant that the marriage age remained at 18 in England and Wales but did not apply to Scotland. Having pipers at any wedding instantly gives it a more traditional feel, hailing back to classic customs and songs that were played in years long past. The perpetuation of the tradition of the local blacksmith there carrying out a form of wedding ceremonies added to the romance. In Fife, however, only a few brave bridegrooms go through the traditional custom, which involves sitting in a tub of water while his legs are smeared with grease, ash and soot. Follow in the footsteps of the countless runaway lovers who, lured by Scotland’s lenient marriage laws, eloped to the sleepy town of Gretna Green on the Anglo-Scots border. Are you feeling rebellious? These wedding traditions are some of the most popular and obscure in Scottish history. For example, if she were from a family of beef farmers, the bride may be referred to as a ‘calf’. Right foot forward is the correct procedure a bride should follow when exiting her house on her way to the wedding. One final tradition that is often observed during both traditional and modern Scottish weddings is blessing the marriage with a dram of whisky, drunk from a ceremonial Quaich. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. The design is traditionally Scottish and the name comes from the Gaelic word ‘cuach’ which means ‘cup’. Having looked at the most prominent gifts, we can now delve into the many Scottish wedding traditions when tying the knot. Within these traditions there are many symbols. The dance sees villagers and the wedding party begin dancing from the harbour and continue through the village, with each couple leaving the reel when they pass their home. Recommended to you based on your activity and what's popular • Feedback Each time they repeat, more people join in, including the best man, the maid of honour, the families of the newly-weds and then the other guests. The only rule is that this should occur before the ceremony rather than after. If you have someone in mind to help complete this custom, let them know beforehand. Mostly, the rèiteach is just a traditional formality and everyone takes part with smiles on their faces. From thistles in your bouquet to a sixpence in your shoe, these traditions will … After the ceremony, the newlyweds leave the church followed by the best man escorted by the maid of honour. Another simple gift option to make your day feel inherently Scottish. The Speerin. If you are interested in having a traditional wedding in the heart of the Scottish lowlands, learn more about our extensive wedding facilities and beautiful rooms today. This tradition is extremely old and has no distinct origin, though is probably tied to other wedding traditions like the washing. Traditional Celtic Wedding Vows 03 Copy I, , in the name of the spirit of God that resides within us all, by the life that courses within my blood and the love that resides within my heart, take thee … Briefly put, during a penny wedding, the guests to the wedding bring food or a financial contribution to help pay for the festivities. Learn about the quirky Scottish good luck rituals and romantic customs you can incorporate into your own ceremony, from those which have become common in weddings around the world to obscure time-honoured traditions that are still followed in small corners of Scotland. A luckenbooth is a brooch given as a love token by a gentleman to his betrothed. Feet washing… The Scottish Quaich or ‘Loving Cup’ is a two-handled silver bowl which is topped up with whisky, usually by the bride, and then passed around for the wedding party to sip once the legal proceedings have been concluded. Additionally, he would not refer to the bride by name, but by her family’s trade. The 'wedding sark' is the traditional name given to the shirt worn by the groom which is gifted by the bride. If you´re planning a wedding in Scotland, you might want to incorporate some of these ancient traditions … Scottish Wedding Traditions. The wedding scramble is still a very common Scottish wedding tradition and can be included in your special day quite easily. As the bride is leaving the church and stepping into her car or vehicle of choice, the father of the bride throws coins out of the window. © 2020 Gleddoch Hotel, Spa & Golf All rights reserved. Hopefully, these will inspire you to create the wedding you’ve always wanted. The Grand March is one of the most famous, having seen a lot of use throughout the mid-to-late 1800s during wedding ceremonies. Potentially, this is to symbolise a marriage that will last for years to come. The bride sits on a stool while an older, married woman washes and dries her feet. Tuck a sprig of shamrock into an Irish bouquet or a branch of white heather for the … Wedding cakes are a common feature of Scottish weddings today but in earlier times there would be a ‘bridescake’. One of the many details of Scottish culture is the unique wedding customs that we employ. Traditionally, this would involve the entire wedding party and guests, where the participants would dance through the town and villagers would leave as they reached their homes, slowly thinning the crowd at the end of the evening. A penny wedding is a simple idea that will probably appeal to most betrothed couples. The pinning of the tartan is a tradition which occurs at the end of the wedding ceremony after the couple has been officially married. The rèiteach is the Scottish take on asking the bride’s father for permission to marry her. Please read our privacy and cookies statement for more information. our picturesque setting and luxury facilities. Traditionally, all parties, particularly the betrothed, would look to leave the home and enter the venue leading with their right foot. Other than acquiring the alcohol itself, this is far from an expensive tradition and can create a lasting memory and goodwill between families. Expert local knowledge, gifts and inspiration. From the Bride wearing white, to the order of the speeches and toasts. This would continue until the newly-weds were left, after which they could enjoy a final dance alone as a couple. You can now search our website to see what businesses are open and signed up to the Good to Go scheme. Preceded by a piper or fiddler, the bridegroom leads the maid of honour while the bride walks behind with the best man. Have you always wanted to have a traditional Scottish wedding? As the bride steps into the car, her father throws a handful of coins for the children to collect. It begins with the bride and groom marching to the sound of bagpipes or a live band. From the... Pre-Wedding … As the bride steps into the car, her father throws a handful of coins for the children to collect. The couple would cut the ribbon on their wedding day, dropping the stones to the ground in the process and, in turn, granting themselves health and prosperity in the future. Oddly enough, the phrase 'tying the knot' comes from … The modern version of this tradition involves a basket of rocks being tied to the church door using ribbon. Most commonly, this would be baked and performed by the bride’s mother, after which the guests would rush to try and pick up part of the scone or treat. It’s inclusive, fun and extremely Scottish. This is a brooch, usually made of silver, engraved with two intertwined hearts topped with a crown to represent Mary Queen of Scots. Believed to bring about financial good fortune, it also takes place in weddings in Ayrshire where it is known as a 'warsel'. Placing the coin in the shoe is the perfect opportunity for father and daughter to take a little time, alone, to reflect and be together before the big day gets underway. This is predominantly because of the tartan designs which they feature, another important aspect of historical Scottish society. Loch Lomond, The Trossachs, Stirling & Forth Valley, The Famous Blacksmiths Shop, Gretna Green. The word Celtic or Celt is in reference to the cultural and geographical group of people known as the Celts. Today we generally think of Celtic as a wide reference to Irish or Scottish culture and traditions. By using our website you consent to our use of cookies. 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