What is a multicultural wedding?

As the world gets smaller, multicultural weddings become more prominent. These are generally defined as marriage between couples who come from different countries, speak different languages or have different religions.  However, it could easily be that you come from the same country, but from different parts where traditions can differ greatly.

How can you blend two cultures?

Well, one way could be that each person wears the traditional clothing of their culture or heritage however, if one is very colourful and the other traditionally white, one may feel out-done by the other.  Some cultures such as Hindu, wear very colourful clothes, the bride usually wears red whereas, in the Christian religion the bride traditionally wears white.  In some, women need to cover their shoulders and heads and in others, anything goes. 


Multicultural wedding dress codes?

There are many ways you can incorporate both into your wedding day.  You could decide to wear the traditional clothing from one side to the ceremony and have a second outfit from the other side for the evening.  Or, you could hold two ceremonies on two consecutive days.  In light of today’s issues with the current pandemic, this would be a way of having more people able to join in your celebration – just a thought.

Many young couples getting married today decide to hold a contemporary wedding incorporating rituals from both cultures to help blend their heritage, families and lives together.  Here are some of my favourites to consider.

Sheva B’rachot or Seven Blessings – a Jewish Tradition

These focus on joy, the power of love and celebration.  The blessings are traditionally given under the Chuppah and then on the following seven days at the Sheva B’rachot meals which are hosted by family and very good friends.  These were seen as a way of incorporating the whole village or community into the couple’s celebrations.

Again, at a time when larger gatherings are not being allowed in some areas, this could be another way of have more people involved in your celebrations.  You hold your ceremony with close family and then seven evenings of meals and celebrations with extended family and friends – it could be a win-win for all.

Who recites the seven blessings?

Anyone can recite the blessings, traditionally they are recited under the Chuppah by the Rabbi or the officiant and then again at the meal alongside the other blessings and messages of good wishes.  Here it could be an honoured guest or guests who would read them, grandparents etc.

If you are going to include the Sheva B’rachot meals for the seven days following the ceremony.  You will need to liaise with those who will host them as soon as you have chosen your date so they can ensure they can prepare in time.  

Hindu Ritual

Hindu couples marry under a Mandap which is a temporary square structure, usually on a raised platform with a fire in the middle.  The structure is highly decorated with brightly coloured flowers.  The marriage traditionally is a sacrament and is not contractual.  The fire is a sacred witness.

Traditionally the bride’s brother offers her three handfuls of rice or barley as wishes for plenty and happiness in her new life.  She in turn feeds these to the fire as an offering.  This can easily be brought into a contemporary multicultural wedding ceremony with the wedding couple choosing an honoured guest who would offer up to them three handwritten messages of guidance and support they could both read before dropping them into the flames of the fire.  Alternatively the Celebrant could write three personalised blessings as the couple drop rice, barley or lavender buds into the fire.

Las Arras or Unity Coins

This is a ritual widely practiced in Spain and Latin American countries.  It’s symbolic in that it shows the couple will work together to manage their finances.  Traditional the Groom will provide and the Bride will manage the finances, and together they will make a home and provide for their family.

Tradition has it the 13 coins of Silver or Gold, which are generally handed down from parent to first child, are handed to the priest to bless.   He pours them into the Bride’s hands, the Bride pours them into the Grooms hands. They go back and forth showing they will work together for richer or poorer.  Each coin is to represent prosperity for one month and the 13th is a little extra.  They are also said to represent Jesus and his 12 apostles.

Today they tend to be passed one at a time from the groom to the bride as the celebrant or officiant reads the blessing.  They are said to represent Love, Commitment, Trust, Respect, Joy, Harmony, Happiness, Wisdom, Nurturing, Caring, Cooperation and peace however, the blessing can be more personalised by having your celebrant write 12 more personal meanings just for you.

There are so many ways to bring both cultures into your special day.  Find your venue and ensure they can accommodate your requirements.  Some indoor venues will not allow naked flames etc so be sure they will allow everything you want for your special day. 

Find the Celebrant right for you.  There are so many different celebrants out there, there will definitely be one just right for you.  They will get to know you and write your ceremony to your exact requirements and will give you suggestions on the ways you can bring your heritage into your ceremony and make all your family and friends come together and feel involved in your big day.

I love to celebrate life’s important moments. If you would like to know more about how I could help you personalise your wedding day the please contact me here.

The Celebrant Directory


Lara-Jayne Jackson
Cindy Baffour
Jeremy Wong
Marcus Lewis
Jonathan Borba
Avinash Uppuluri
Alesia Kazantceva