Our Highland Wedding

Our Highland Wedding

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Wedding Charms

Traditional Victorian wedding charms were made of sterling silver and were placed inside the wedding cake for guests to pull out...

We chose to make our own charms using polymer clay and "pulling" them from a basket rather than from the cake...

The traditional charms were given these meanings:
Magic Lamp ~~ Dreams Come True
Dollar Tree ~~ Financial Security
Heart ~~ Your Love is True
Rocking Chair ~~ Long Life
Wedding Bells ~~ Joyous Declaration
Anchor ~~ Stable Life
Cross ~~ Life of Peace and Tranquility
Four Leaf Clover ~~ Life of Good Luck
Horseshoe ~~ Good Luck and Prosperity
Heart Lock ~~ Faithful Love
Key ~~ Key to the Heart
Wishbone ~~ Wishes Come True
Chimney Sweep or Ladder and Brush ~~ Luck
Thistle ~~ Scottish Heritage
Celtic Knot ~~ Scottish Heritage and Love's Enduring Promise
The Saltire ~~ Scottish Heritage
Claddagh ~~ Friendship, Love, Loyalty
Celtic Cross ~~ Pledge to Defend the Home

Friday, October 1, 2010

Pledging to Provide and Protect

Symbolic gifts given and received by the bride and groom have deep tradition in a Scottish wedding...

The Groom gave his bride a sheaf of wheat, symbolizing his pledge to provide for their home.
The Bride gave her groom a piece of woven cloth, symbolizing her pledge to provide for their home.

The Groom gave a dagger or dirk, symbolizing his pledge to defend their home.
The Bride gave a Bible, symbolizing her pledge to defend their home.

The Groom would also give the bride a silver spoon to insure they never go without food.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Ceilidh Time

We chose to have a Ceilidh (pronounced Kay-Lee) following our wedding ceremony as our Scottish reception.

The word Ceilidh, in the original ancient Gaelic, means "companion."

A Scottish Ceilidh is basically a party... which is what a wedding reception is. It is generally accepted that a ceilidh includes food, fellowship, music, and dancing.

My wonderful daughter and my brother learned many Scottish folk dances... a few were included at the ceilidh, but we soon realized space was an issue and the dancing dwindled... but the dances were fun to learn!

Canadian Barn Dance - Colonel MacLean of Ardgour - Donald MacLean's Farewell To ObanWe had music, Scottish folk music, and the ever present bagpipe music from the field at McRae Meadow as the various pipe and drum bands marched by the Clan Lindsay tent throughout the evening.

Master bagpiper, Jon Shell, did an amazing job of piping to, from, and during the wedding ceremony.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

First Steps, Ringing Bells, Horseshoe and Scramble

One of the traditions we chose to include in our wedding was "The First Steps Together" as man and wife... we walked around the outside of the circle of "our people" taking our first steps together as a married couple. When we completed our walk, our guests welcomed us back into the circle, symbolizing their show of support, love, and encouragement as we began our journey together as husband and wife, surrounded by the love of family and friends.

Another tradition was the Ringing of the Bells... we provided our guests with small bells and asked them to ring the church bells at the end of the wedding ceremony to joyously declare the marriage. The sound of bells was also said to drive away evil spirits.

We included the Scottish tradition of having a toddler (my granddaughter and my niece teamed up for this one) hand a horseshoe to the bride as she walks out of the church with her husband. The horseshoe signifies good luck in the marriage.

Upon leaving the church it is a Scottish tradition for the bride and groom to scatter coins to the assembled children to collect. This scattering is referred to as a "Scramble." Legend has it that this token will be constantly returned to the bride and groom throughout their marriage.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Tartan Pinning

In Scottish wedding lore, the uniting of families through marriage brought forth peace and good will among clans, strengthening all extended family in love and support. The pinning of the groom’s tartan upon the bride is a tradition of the Scots that has existed for millennia.

During our wedding ceremony, we had our guests say the following Scottish Wedding Blessing with us as the tartan was pinned on...
"A thousand welcomes to you with your marriage kerchief,
May you be healthy all your days,
May you be blessed with long life and peace,
May you grow old with goodness and with riches”

The tartan sash was pinned with my groom's gift to me... a Luckenbooth Pin

Called the Luckenbooth because they were sold from the locked booths of the Royal Mile, adjacent to St. Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh. This type of love token seems to go back to at least the 1600s. Luckenbooths were traditionally exchanged between lovers on betrothal. They were sometimes pinned to the shawl of the first baby to protect it from evil spirits. There are many surviving antique brooches of this type in museums in Scotland. Some of these were made by traveling tinkers and sold to gentlemen for their ladies. Some have passed from generation to generation to become valuable heirlooms. Sometimes inscribed phrases such as "Of earthly joys thou art my choice" are evidence of their purpose. They are probably the most romantic type of brooch in Scotland's history, hence their enduring appeal. This type of brooch even came to America and simple forms of the brooch were cut from coins and used for trade among the Eastern Woodland Indians. Many people know about the traditional Claddagh ring of Ireland with its crowned heart but fewer know of this wonderful traditional love token.

The brooch given to me by my new husband bears the inscription "Wrong not the heart whose joy thou art."