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Bride’s Survival Guide: Tips To Help Plan A Multicultural Wedding

Nowadays, it is common to have couples from different backgrounds get engaged: religious, cultural, or geographical. As you look to personalize your multicultural wedding ceremony from the type of wedding dress you will put on to the food to serve, reception details reflecting who you are as a couple like naming the tables after places you have traveled together,  you will also want to include your family background.

How do you seamlessly incorporate religious, cultural, and geographical details into your wedding ceremony? The following are some of the tips you can use to help in planning a multicultural wedding.

  • Research your background: The first place you can turn to to get information about your traditions in your family. Grandparents, as well as parents, can be a great source of such information. They are likely going to share with you the traditions that they incorporated into their wedding and the customs which you might not be familiar with. After you have talked to them, you can use Pinterest and Google to research for ideas and look out for websites, books, and blogs that might speak for your background directly.
  • Edit any possibilities: After researching your traditions, make a list of the ones you feel you want to incorporate in your multicultural wedding ceremony or reception or both. You can come up with a Pinterest board of the ideas you think are useful in case you have images of them. You are not obliged to include all of them pick the one you feel is right based on personal preference and traditions.
  • Get a wedding planner who has experience: It is effortless to get a wedding planner who specializes in weddings that celebrate a particular background or culture. They are knowledgeable about a variety of traditional weddings, dances and music, menu items, and many more details that you might want to include in your wedding. They will also come with a list of resources as well as vendors who could assist in creating a feel and look that you want for your multicultural wedding.
  • Get an officiant who will perform the intercultural ceremony: Some officiants might not be conversant with, or willing to lead a ceremony that combines different faiths. Ask the officiant in advance if they will be in a position to officiate your type of wedding ceremony. If it is not possible, you can ask a relative or friend or check online on officiant databases to find the right person to perform your wedding ceremony. You can have an option of bringing in officiant from both backgrounds to collaborate ahead of time and know what to do and when seamlessly blending both customs and religions.
  • Book a house of worship that is accommodating: When booking the house of prayer, you can follow the same guidelines as the one for looking for an officiant. Some willingly allow for an inter-faith wedding ceremony to take place in their church, while others will resist. You have to be clear when you are booking the venue that you want to have an interfaith wedding ceremony and find out if it is okay with them.
  • The traditions have to be explained to the guests in advance: While there are couples who utilize the wedding program to explain to the guests who is who in their wedding party, you can also list the different elements of the wedding ceremony. You can tell in detail the parts that you think your guests might be unfamiliar with. If you are unsure on how to draft each section, you can ask for assistance from the officiant.
  • Highlight special dances and music: If there are special dances and songs that you want to be included in your wedding ceremony and reception, ensure that the DJ or the band familiarizes with them. You are free to book entertainment or a band specializing in a particular genre such as belly dancers.

If it is a popular group, many people will already be knowing about it. But if you are thinking to dance your first dance, then there will be a need to take some lessons to learn the steps. You can pair up the bridal party and let them take the lessons too.

  • Create a fusion menu: It does not matter if you have set up a buffet or you are serving a seated dinner, there will be a need to create a menu that brings out the flavors for both backgrounds. Try explaining to your caterer your favorite spices, dishes, and recipe and allow them to conceptualize the menu, including a variety of both religions and cultures. A fusion menu should not be limited to the cocktail hour as well as dinner; it has to include the bar menu, dessert menu, and the wedding cake; all have to be inspired by your background.
  • Put on cultural fashions: If you are out to honor your heritage, you should have a chance to have a second wedding day look where you put on the traditional wedding dress. Indian brides will go for an elegant saree, Chinese brides will go for a red dress, while Korean brides and grooms will put on the traditional hanbok.

If you feel you want to wear two looks for your wedding, alert the photographer and set aside time for photography in your traditional dress. If your concern is about coverage and modesty for a religious wedding ceremony, you can go for a wedding dress with a sleeve and higher neckline, and a convertible look that will allow you to change from the modest wedding ceremony look to a revealing one at your wedding reception.

  • Consider having a second wedding ceremony: If you want to incorporate more than two traditions, then you can consider having two wedding ceremonies. They can be held on the same day or have the second one held at a different venue and day.

With the above, you can seamlessly have a multicultural wedding ceremony and reception. For other guidelines on weddings, find them at the ultimate bride’s survival guide.


Photo by Studio Negarin

Photo by cindy baffour

Photo by Nathan Dumlao

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