According to some calendars, April is National Wedding Month. Don ‘t ask me why. I just go with what I find on the Internet and what dovetails into my stories and experiences.
So, today I’m going to talk about wedding veils and some of the superstitions that surround them. Here are five interesting tidbits about the most ethereal bridal accessory, and, in my opinion, one that no bride should be without.
- The tradition of bridal veils dates back to the days of arranged weddings, and was probably connected to the fact that the families were afraid if the groom saw the bride and didn’t like what he saw, he’d bolt. I can’t help but remember the Bible story of Jacob, Rachel, and Leah, where Leah was switched for her sister. Jacob spent seven years laboring for Rachel’s hand in marriage and at the last minute his father-in-law switched the sisters. He didn’t know he had the wrong woman until the veil was removed, and he was already married by then. The veil certainly worked against the bridegroom that time, because he ended up bargaining for Rachel, again, with another seven years of servitude to his father-in-law.
- Wedding veils covering a bride’s face had purposes other than preventing a runaway groom. In Roman times the veil was supposed to protect the bride from evil spirits. Romans went as far as to dress the wedding party in the same attire as the bride and groom so evil spirits would be confused and not know who to attack
- Except for fittings, the veil should not be worn until the wedding day, and should be put on right before the bride leaves for the ceremony. Superstition says brides should not gaze at themselves in the mirror wearing the veil except during fittings. To do so will bring an unhappy marriage, desertion by the groom, or even his death before the wedding.
- Folk wisdom says the older the veil the better. The best veil is one borrowed from a woman with a happy marriage. Heirloom veils are also high on this list. The good fortune and fertility of the bride from who you borrow your veil will be passed on to the new bride.
- Many veils are attached to a crown-like band. You can thank the Romans for this part of the wedding veils. They believed that evil spirits couldn’t get inside a circle, so a bride who wore a wreath on her head was protected from evil. But make sure the circlet or wreath of flowers is covered by a veil, or you’ll be sorry you married.
Now, having told you all of this, I must admit that I didn’t follow most of these veil traditions. I wore no circlet on my head to keep away evil spirits. My veil was attached with a set of hair combs glued to some white trim. The veil was a new, long cathedral accessory with no blusher. My groom had been dating me for five years before we married. He knew what I looked like and I was pretty sure he wasn’t going to run, and time proved that to be true. We’ve been married twice as long as we’ve been apart. My veil was new, because I had no heirloom veil from my mother, mother-in-law, or grandmother as they were all married in Sunday clothes and fancy hats that had long disappeared from their closets. In fact, at the time of my marriage, I didn’t even know the bridal veil had ancient traditions attached to it.
My daughter, however, managed to get some of the aforementioned lucky wedding veil traditions into her attire, especially the heirloom part. She wore my cathedral veil. I also added a touch of family history from her mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. My daughter’s flower arrangements and her wedding invitations contained daisies, which are her favorite flower. Fortunately, I had daisy trim on my wedding dress, so we continued the daisy theme in her veil. I took the trim from my wedding dress and hand stitched it to the edge of my cathedral veil, along with the blusher she chose to wear.
Then I created a custom, handmade tiara crown for the veil. To a wire tiara base I attached daisies from my wedding dress, crystal beads from a necklace that belonged to her grandmother, and crocheted lace her great-grandmother had made. Here’s a close up of the backside of the crown showing how the lace was wired, and a front view of the daisies, crystals, and the lace her great-grandmother crocheted.
The result was a one-of-a kind wedding tiara to which I attached the cathedral veil and blusher.
When my daughter asked me to create something special for her wedding veil, we didn’t realize she was incorporating ancient wedding traditions into her attire. She just wanted part of her maternal history to be in her wedding. All the family heirlooms made her wedding extra special to her—and to me.
I’ve told you about my wedding veil history. How about yours? What kind of veil did you wear when you were married?
Want a fun read with a happily ever after ending?
Check out Catherine’s award-winning romantic comedy, with a touch of drama.
A Groom for Mama
Beverly Walters is dying, and before she goes she has one wish—to find a groom for her daughter. To get the deed done, Mama enlists the dating service of Jack Somerset, Allison’s former boyfriend.
The last thing corporate-climbing Allison wants is a husband. Furious with Mama’s meddling, and a bit more interested in Jack than she wants to admit, Allison agrees to the scheme as long as Mama promises to search for a cure for her terminal illness.
A cross-country trip from Nevada to Ohio ensues, with a string of disastrous dates along the way, as the trio hunts for treatment and A Groom for Mama.
About the Author:
Multi-award winning author Catherine Castle loves reading about romance and weddings. She also loves writing romance, reading, traveling, singing, theatre, quilting and gardening. She’s a passionate gardener whose garden won a “Best Hillside Garden” award from the local gardening club. She writes sweet and inspirational romances. You can find her award-winning Soul Mate books The Nun and the Narc and A Groom for Mama, on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.