Want Some Irish Wedding Traditions Added to your Modern Wedding Ceremony? 

man and woman kissing near brick wall during daytime

By Eivan’s Wedding Team  article author

Did you know it’s easy to pull a traditional Irish wedding theme for your wedding? You can have a full traditional Irish wedding. Or add some lovely bits of traditions in your modern wedding.

The Irish boast their luck, St. Patrick’s Day, their rich customs and traditions to mention a few.

So, how about learning about some ancient Celtic traditions? You can play around with the Irish heritage in your upcoming wedding? A modern Irish wedding could be the best thing that ever happened to you as a couple.

group of people standing on green grass field during daytime

Let’s see how this rich Irish heritage can fit in your wedding ideas

Choosing your wedding day

According to the Irish customs, in ancient times, couples were warned against marrying between May and August. This is the busiest time in the Irish life. The rest of the months bring good luck if you plan your wedding ceremony then.

In Irish culture, most weddings happened on Sunday because it’s the free day. After the Catholic religion asserted itself in Ireland the Sunday weddings became obsolete. Most Irish couples settle for Saturday unless it’s a civil wedding.

man in black suit standing beside woman in white floral dress

Wedding dress

Irish tradition accommodates use of a special kind of lace. Ireland produces different laces that were suitable for the wedding dress.

Today, you can incorporate the lace either on your veil or wedding gown. A traditional Irish bride wore a blue dress. Blue in Irish heritage is a symbol of purity; today brides can also wear white. If you don’t mind a colorful dress for your wedding, you can find an Irish lace crotchet blue dress for your wedding day.

white wedding dress

The Wedding Flowers

Traditional Irish brides wore a wreath of wild flowers in their hair rather than the veil. They also carried bouquets of herbs in their hands.

Lavender was the best in ancient Ireland. It represented love and devotion for the bride to her new husband. Today, the most popular wedding flower is the Bells of Ireland.

They make stunning bouquets especially when mixed with white roses, lilies or lisanthus. Flower wreaths instead of veils are trending at the moment so you won’t look odd in it. You can choose between the wreath and the bouquet or do both for your modern wedding.

woman in green dress holding yellow and white flower bouquet

Bride’s hair styles

Braided hair is an Irish wedding tradition. It symbolized feminine power and good luck. Irish brides had their hair braided with a ribbon and lace woven through them.

Many brides in the recent past have opted to have braided hair on their wedding day. Its stylish, neat and can last you a little longer after the wedding. Choose a Celtic inspired braiding style for your big day and get a stylist early enough.

woman in white red and green floral long sleeve shirt sitting on bed

Irish Kilt

Did you know kilts are for Scottish and Irish people too? The national tartan of the Irish was a symbol of Gaelic tradition. The kilt accompanies a Kikenny jacket as a suit with a collared shirt, a waistcoat and a neck tie. A kilt wedding today is a sign of pride and ancient Ireland culture celebration.

They are a popular choice among the groom and his groomsmen to wear. If you choose the Irish kilt for your wedding, it will be an honor to the ancient Celtic tradition.

blue and white plaid coat

The wedding ring

The Claddagh ring is passed on from one generation to another. It is one of the ancient traditions that passes on down to many generations. This ring represents unconditional friendship, love and loyalty. Friendship is symbolized in the clasped hands, love by the heart and loyalty by the crown.

This ring was not passed down only to the woman getting married. It was a gift to an unmarried woman who is not yet engaged. She wore it on her right hand with the heart facing towards the end of her finger.

When engagement happens, it became the engagement ring. She wore it on her right hand with the heart facing her own heart. During the wedding ceremony, she wears it on her left hand with the heart facing he own heart. This is the true sign of a married Irish woman.

man in black suit jacket kissing woman in white wedding dress

Make up bells

Wedding bells are common in most Christian weddings. They drive away evil spirits and remind the married couple of their vows. Irish culture calls them make up bells because they are rang at home in case they argue.

The bells remind them of their wedding vow and the arguments stop. Of course the bells do not replace the need to solve your differences but it helps couples do so in a calm manner. Though not commonly used in modern weddings, if you would choose them, the better. Have them rung as your take your vows and then keep them as a reminder.

Tying the knot

Handfasting ceremony represents the coming together of the couple. It starts at the engagement stage. Their wrists tied together with a ribbon symbolizing infinity. This is where the term tying the knot came from. In Irish custom, when a couple tied the knot, they agreed to stay together for a year and a day.

At the end of their period they were either to enter into a permanent marriage or go separate ways. Getting a ribbon to tie your hands as a married couple can act as a reminder of your commitment to one another. Be sure to keep your ribbon as a reminder.

Carrying an Irish horseshoe

The u shaped horseshoe brings good luck according to the Irish customs. The brides are the ones who carry it with the pointy ends pointed upwards. After the wedding the horseshoe finds a place at the home of the newlyweds hanged over the door.

The best horseshoe feared by the evil spirits was made of iron. Thus, the horseshoe and other jewelry for the bride are made of iron. It will not do any harm to carry a small iron horseshoe within your wedding bouquet. After all, it will bring you good luck and keep the evil spirits away from your marriage!

black leather lace up boots

The wedding reception

The traditional Irish menu consists of everyday ingredients – corned beef, potato soup, Irish soda bread and cabbage.

Cooked right they made such a delicious meal that the wedding guests enjoyed. Today, with a broad menu to choose from, you can still add some traditional ingredients.

Corned beef for example prepared by a modern day chef are sumptuous. Ensure plenty of Guinness, Jameson and Bailey’s Irish cream is flowing.

person holding stainless steel fork and knife slicing food on white ceramic plate

The wedding cake

The old Irish wedding traditions cake is a hearty fruit cake. It has raisins, almonds, cherries, and spices and laced with bourbon or brandy.

Varieties of fruits cakes and beer cakes are popular for weddings across the world. You can play around with flavors and get an amazing fruit cake for your special day.

white and red round cake on brown wooden round tray
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