Party Themes

Creative Wedding Tips For the Modern Bride: Something Old Something New Something Borrowed Something Blue

Can you imagine being kidnapped on your wedding day?  Brides were regularly kidnapped or attacked for their money or property… this is why Bride’s traditionally stand on the left; the Groom’s right hand is free to draw his sword and fight off the enemy.  

The Groom’s best friend is traditionally known as the Best Man because the Groom would choose the best sword fighter who would then protect him on his wedding day.  Bridesmaids wore similar dresses to the Bride to protect her by confusing evil spirits and people who wished her harm.

Wedding Dress
Image: Teacups and Glitter

We’ve all heard of these customs and traditions but most probably didn’t know the meaning behind them.  

Something Old

Something New

Something Borrowed

Something Blue

And A Silver Sixpence In Her Shoe

Have you ever wondered where this wedding tradition comes from and what it means?  It’s a British custom and comes from an old English rhyme dating back to the late 19th Century.  

The Bride includes five items from the rhyme as part of her wedding outfit or carries with her on the day of her wedding as good luck charms.  Brides from all over the world have now adopted this tradition in the hopes of having good fortune and luck in their marriage. 

Wedding bible

So what exactly does this custom involve, and how can you creatively add each one to your wedding?

Something Old

‘Something old’ represents a link from the Bride’s past.  This is to do with the Bride remaining connected to her family, her past and her traditions even after marrying and establishing a family of her own.  The Bride is leaving behind her past to start a new beginning, but she is not forgetting where she has come from.  

Some creative ideas for a modern twist:

  • Leave in a vintage getaway car
  • Recreate a picture from your parents wedding day 
  • Bind your bouquet with your Father’s tie that he wore on his wedding day
  • If you are lucky enough to have your Grandmother in attendance why not give her the honour and embrace the trend of Grandma’s as flower girls
Vintage Car
Image: United with Love

Something New

‘Something new’ represents optimism for the future.  This relates to the Bride’s new life ahead of her and naturally reflects the Bride and Groom creating a marriage that will last a lifetime.   

Some creative ideas for a modern twist:

  • Design new matching tattoos
  • Make a new Instagram hashtag that your guests can use to tag your wedding photos
  • Wear a new perfume so that the scent will always remind you of happy memories of your day 
  • Write each other love letters on the morning of your wedding and seal them closed in a box with a bottle of wine. Open the box on an anniversary
Wedding Perfume
Image: The Rokkor Files

Something Borrowed

‘Something borrowed’ represents borrowed happiness.  Typically the Bride borrows something from a happily married friend or family member. 

Some creative ideas for a modern twist:

  • Borrow an idea from a loved one’s wedding; dance to your parents first dance song or replicate your best friends wedding cake 
  • Commemorate your borrowed last name by stitching it inside your wedding dress
  • Serve a signature cocktail at the reception called ‘something borrowed’
  • Borrow (or hire) that designer handbag you’ve always wanted 
Wedding Cocktails
Image: Colin Cowie Weddings

Something Blue

Queen Victoria started the tradition of wearing a white wedding dress in 1840, but before this most Brides chose to wear blue gowns.  ‘Something blue’ represents purity, love, and fidelity.

Some creative ideas for a modern twist:

  • Wear a pale blue nail polish on your ring finger
  • Incorporate a beautiful sapphire stone into your wedding jewellery
  • Ask your Bridesmaids to wear silk blue dressing robes on the morning of your wedding 
  • Use a stunning blue wedding journal to plan the finer details
Wedding Journal
Image: Weddbook

Silver Sixpence In Her Shoe 

A ‘silver sixpence’ represents future prosperity and wealth.  The Bride’s Father was traditionally responsible for placing the sixpence in the shoe.  The sixpence is a British coin that was in use from 1551 to 1967 so can be difficult to find; many Bride’s substitute a shiny penny instead.

Some creative ideas for a modern twist:

  • Use a coin from the year you met 
  • Use a coin from the year you are getting married
  • Visit the Royal Mint and strike your own coin (you can strike your own coin and take it away as a memento of your visit)
Wedding Sixpence
Image: Christina McNeill

While it is obviously not mandatory to honour this wedding tradition; it is a fun way to creatively blend the past, present and future!

As a Bridesmaid for my Best Friend; I along with her other Bridesmaids came up with a new way to put a twist on this old custom.   

Bridesmaids Sleepover
Image: Teacups and Glitter

The night before the wedding we surprised the Bride with her very own Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed and Something Blue gift hamper to bring good fortune and luck to her marriage. 

Bride gift
Image: Teacups and Glitter

For her ‘something old’ we decided to pay homage to her favourite childhood band; the Spice Girls. We wrapped up the Spice Girls greatest hits album and hoped it would remind her of her past with her sisters and cousins.  

For her something new we framed Say You Won’t Let Go lyrics by James Arthur.  We hoped it would bring luck to her future by framing a sweet memento of their first dance.    

Wedding first dance lyrics
Image: Teacups and Glitter

For her ‘something borrowed’ each of the Bridesmaids lent her a piece of useful advice.  These were typed up onto a scroll and fastened with ribbon.

And for her ‘something blue’ we included celebratory bubbles dressed in a powder blue ribbon.  

The gift was then presented in a wooden crate hamper filled with soft blue heart tissue paper. 

Bride gift
Image: Teacups and Glitter

With just a little thought and imagination, you can incorporate this custom on your wedding day.  Remember – it doesn’t have to be part of the outfit – so get creative!

The modern bride knows that the best weddings are full of personal touches and that’s all that really counts.

What does your something old, new, borrowed and blue list look like? Let us know in the comments below! 

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