Southern weddings are known for a lot of different things, like outdoor ceremonies and receptions, huge wedding parties, lace gowns and over-the-top florals. Southern families are big on etiquette and tradition and this spills over into weddings. Here are seven Southern wedding traditions and customs that you may not be familiar with if you’re not from the South.
The tradition is to bury a full bottle of bourbon upside down at the site of your wedding exactly one month before the date. The myth is, that if you do this, it won’t rain on your wedding day. Like I mentioned, outdoor weddings are huge in the south. Of course, most people don’t actually believe in the bourbon superstition, but it’s tradition, y’all!
In addition to your typical husband and wife professional photos, it’s also common for the bride to have their own bridal photoshoot. This is something that a lot of couples in the U.S. do now, but make no mistake, it originated in the South.
A charm pull cake
The cake pull is especially popular in the New Orleans area, but everyone in the south knows what this is, and many have one. Charms with special meanings are put into the bottom layer of the wedding cake with ribbons attached to them. Either all of the single ladies or just the bridal party will get to pull a ribbon and charm out before the cake gets cut.
The groom’s cake
Speaking of cakes, a groom’s cake is present at virtually every Southern wedding. Though it’s something you’ll see at weddings all over the U.S., it’s basically a staple in the south. Something that’s perfectly normal in the south, but others may question, is the armadillo groom’s cake. You’ll find many Texans and Steel Magnolias lovers with this cake at their rehearsal dinner or reception.
The second line
The tradition of the second line is mostly done in New Orleans. If you’re not sure what this is, chances are you’ve seen it in a TV show or movie. Usually taking place after the ceremony, a jazz or marching band will follow the bride and groom with their wedding party and guests down the street celebrating. Who wouldn’t love their own Mardi Gras parade on their wedding day?
There’s something about southern people and monogramming items. It’s customary to see many things monogrammed during a Southern wedding—ties, socks, robes, cake toppers and napkins are just the tip of the monogrammed iceberg.
Those outdoors weddings get hot! You could have standard hand fans for your bridal party, or you could have classy parasols. It’s fairly common to see the bride and her bridesmaids using parasols to shade themselves in the summer months. Some even go as far as to provide parasols for all of their guests as well.