As Toronto wedding photographers, we’ve had the pleasure of attending many beautiful Chinese weddings. While many Chinese couples today opt for a mix of Western and Chinese wedding traditions, there are a few interesting details about Chinese weddings. From pre-wedding ceremonies to colors, here are some things you should know before planning or attending a Chinese wedding.
Colors play a huge role in Chinese weddings. While white is the traditional color for Western weddings, red is the main color for Chinese weddings. Red symbolizes success, honor, fertility, loyalty, and love among other things. Many Chinese brides have adopted wearing a white wedding dress for the ceremony but will change into a red dress for the reception. Gold is also a popular Chinese wedding color as it symbolizes wealth and fortune.
Although many modern Chinese brides do wear white dresses, white is commonly associated with funerals in this culture. So wedding guests should steer clear of it as well as any dark colors such as black or gray.
It’s extremely common to do a full-blown pre-wedding shoot before the big day. Brides will typically wear multiple outfits and gowns during this shoot, but not their actual wedding dress(es). Our wedding photographers are extremely experienced in doing Chinese pre-wedding photography if this is something you are interested in. A completed wedding album is usually displayed at the wedding for guests to view.
For Chinese weddings, there are usually more pre-wedding activities and ceremonies than for a Western wedding. If you’re doing a Chinese wedding let our photographers know so they can plan to be there to shoot all of the events.
You’ve probably heard about a wedding registry, which is where the bride and groom make a list of items they’d like as gifts. For Chinese weddings bringing a physical gift is rare. Most guests will give money in a red envelope as a wedding gift to the bride and groom. Be sure to avoid giving any amount that is in multiples of four as this is an unlucky number in China.
Chinese weddings celebrate guests as much as the happy couple. At some point, the bride and groom, as well as close family members and the wedding party, will walk around and take a drink with each table. Traditionally everyone takes a shot of rice-wine, but it is typically okay to go with any drink. Many brides and grooms even choose to take shots of non-alcoholic drinks to avoid getting too intoxicated!
There are a number of pre-wedding ceremonies and activities for Chinese weddings. There is a tea ceremony, where the bride and groom pay respect to their parents and elders. There are also door games, in which the groom and groomsmen perform a number of fun games to “win” over the bride. Our photographers always have a blast shooting these door games so be sure to let us know if you are including them!
Need a photographer for your big day? Our Toronto wedding photographers are experienced with capturing all of the special moments and details of Chinese weddings! Contact us today!