Wedding ceremonies have always been part of our human existence. It’s the most momentuous event in our lives. Everywhere in the world, rich or poor, well and ill, religious or not, two people who love each other perform this ritual since time immemorial. It is a mark of unity, of maturity, of manhood and womanhood, and most of all, an act of love. It is part of our fundamental process, in starting a society, our spiritual growth, a social responsibility, a biological fulfillment.
The day of the wedding is perhaps the most daydreamed event in one’s lifetime and wearing a wedding gown is one of girl’s fantasies.
Although, the western wedding trends is dominating the world, some are still celebrating their most precious moment in modest wedding dress in contemporary styles. Let’s look at how brides from different countries dress up on their wedding day!
Being the country with the largest Muslim population, Indonesian brides are keeping it modest with style and modern touch. Sometimes, a very elaborate head dress to distinctive of the region they belong to are worn regardless of status. But the daughters or noble families and leaders of the community will usually have those elaborate head dress.
In Kazakhstan, most girls still wear modest cuts and sleeves along with the saukele, the elongated hat, as part of their wedding culture. Sau means “sunny or beautiful” and kele for “head“, is basically part of the ritual to wish the bride a good life ahead of her, and a sign that the woman is now married. The saukele sometimes become part of the dowry, and are decorated with precious stones. The richer the bride, the more elaborate their saukeles.
The world had seen the Imperial courts of the many powerful Kings and Princes of Ethiopia or known as Abyssinia. This is why the opulence of this amazing nation are still reflected in their social gatherings till this day. One of this is the wedding ceremonies where couples put on matching cloaks and caps made of gold- embroidered velvet.
The floral headdress is an integral part of the Slavic culture but the tradition is hardly surviving these days due to modernization, except in Poland. Polish people are still wearing crowns of flowers and herbs in special events such as weddings. The bride wears the most elaborate flower crown that matches her colorful floral embroidered wedding gown.
Metallic breast chains and plates, prominent baroque embroidery and ornate metallic belt called the talisman is the main decoration for brides, worn with hat, in the Caucus region specifically Chechnya and Circassian. The look resembles the traditional costume called the “chokha“, that signifies the pride and heroism of their people.
In Orthodox Jewish weddings, the bride wears a veil is worn over the head and a modest full- sleeved floor- length wedding gown. Sometimes, heirloom gowns are preferred.
Reds are the most preferred color of the wedding gowns for Hindu brides. It is decorated with opulent beadwork and they wear the decorated matching sarin on their head. The look is not complete without the hena on their hands.
Although it is not common anymore, some brides in the Philippines prefer the classic Mestiza sleeved gown, as a modest choice. There are many variations of the mestiza
Kaftan is widely worn any occasions in Morocco but the most elaborately- decorated and luxurious kaftan are worn by brides on their wedding day. Kaftan has a long history as for its existence and influence in the fashion world. It was worn as early as the Mesopotamia period until this day. It traveled many countries but etched its legacy in Morocco.
Hanbok is what they call the traditional dress of Korea. Traditionally, colorful hanbok are worn by brides. Most brides still wear a hanbok as a custom ritual on their wedding. Some wears the trendy Western style.
Bridal kimonos are widely worn as a traditional wedding dress in most places in Japan as part of their wedding ritual. In fact, during the wedding day, the bride and group make multiple outfit change but the high light is the wearing of the kimono. Japan is a country with a very rich cultural heritage but also a modern country. It is amazing how this country able to preserve their traditional whilst advancing as a modern nation. Nowadays, designers fuse traditional bridal kimono with a contemporary Western feel without loosing its essence.
In Vietnam, the traditional Ao Dai; a two piece outfit of Mandarin collared dress with a waist-high slit on both sides and square pants, is a wedding dress favorite. The bride’s Ao Dai are decorated with embroidery and beadwork, usually elaborate designs.