A Chinese wedding is often planned according to auspicious dates that are determined by consulting the couple’s astrological charts

If you have Chinese heritage or you are marrying somebody Chinese it might be a nice touch to reflect that in your wedding arrangements. As well as acknowledging your culture this can be a sign of respect to Chinese parents and can make your wedding really personal. You can choose just to include elements of Chinese culture in your decorations or outfits, or you could go further and make specific ceremonies and traditions part of your day.

Chinese Wedding Traditions

A Chinese wedding is often planned according to auspicious dates that are determined by consulting the couple’s astrological charts. The ceremony itself is usually planned to take place at half past the hour so the couple start their married life as the hand of the clock is moving upwards and not downwards.

Some Chinese wedding traditions that could be included in your wedding itself include the tea ceremony where the bride will serve tea to her new parents in law and receive gifts in return, and the cake cutting where the couple cut all the tiers from the bottom up symbolising their ladder to success.

A Chinese wedding is often planned according to auspicious dates that are determined by consulting the couple’s astrological charts. The ceremony itself is usually planned to take place at half past the hour so the couple start their married life as the hand of the clock is moving upwards and not downwards.

Chinese Wedding Colour Schemes

Red is the colour that is most associated with Chinese weddings because it symbolises luck happiness and joy. Traditionally a Chinese bride would have worn red, and the venue would have been decorated in red. Guests would give the couples red envelopes with money inside. There are other colours that can be incorporated into a Chinese wedding colour scheme and these are gold, which signifies wealth and fortune, silver which is associated with purity and fulfilment, and pink, which symbolises love and romance.

Chinese Wedding Outfits

Traditionally Chinese brides would have worn red outfits known as Qi Pao (northern China) and Cheongsam (southern China). These red outfits would have been embroidered with dragon and phoenix designs in gold and silver, symbolising the balance of male and female power.

These days many Chinese brides choose to wear western style white wedding dresses, but they may change into traditional Chinese dress for the tea ceremony. It is not uncommon for a Chinese bride to change outfits several times during the wedding

For the groom the traditional wedding outfit would be a dark blue jacket and pants suit with a dragon pattern, which is sometimes worn with a long robe over the top. However, many modern Chinese grooms just wear a simple dark suit.

Even if you decide to have a western style white wedding dress, choosing Chinese style dresses for your bridesmaids, with high necks, cap sleeves, and straight skirts can be a beautiful touch for your wedding. They are available in a range of vibrant colours and patterns and look fabulous with a coordinating hand fan in place of a bouquet.

Chinese Wedding Decorations

Decorations for Chinese weddings are usually a vibrant red in colour, and may take the form of banners, lanterns, fans, and paper streamers. If you just want to include a hint of Chinese tradition in your wedding decorations simply hang some paper lanterns from the ceiling and place a paper fan in each place setting as a beautiful yet practical wedding favour.

There are certain symbols that will often be found at a Chinese wedding and as well as the dragon and phoenix, the double happiness symbols will often be found on decorations. Look for cake toppers, vases, candle decorations, and table runners with the double happiness symbol to use as part of your Chinese wedding.

Chinese Wedding Cakes

Traditionally the parents of the bride and groom would send out dragon and phoenix cakes to wedding guests with the wedding invitations, and these may have a filling of lotus seed paste or red or green bean paste. At a modern Chinese wedding these cakes tend to be served on the day, and if you’d like to include this tradition in your wedding you could serve these cakes along with a western style wedding cake or as part of a dessert buffet.

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