The Timeless Traditions: More Traditions

Martha Stewart Weddings, Winter 2006

Don't feel you must include every custom. Just choose your favorites -- as many or as few as you like. Here are some others to consider.

The First Dance
A couple's first spin as man and wife is a poignant demonstration of how they will dance their way through married life.

Giving the Bride Away
The loving act of "giving away" is not a relinquishment, but rather a symbolic walk from the old life to the new, led by one or both of the bride's parents, or another relative or close friend.

The Kiss
The service over, guests break their silence to heartily applaud the couple's first kiss as husband and wife. This ritual dates back to Roman times, when newlyweds had to kiss in front of a witness to make their union official.

Toasting the Couple
The best man usually offers the first toast after dinner. Others may follow, including the maid of honor, if she's inclined. No one need give a long and entertaining toast if they don't want to; short and heartfelt is just fine.

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