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A Swedish Wedding for Beginners

A SWEDISH WEDDING FOR BEGINNERS WEDDING IS "BRÖLLOP" IN SWEDISH The word bröllop comes from the ancient Swedish word bruþlöp (brudlopp), which means "bride race". The bride's race was the name of the entourage that escorted the bride from the bride's home where the wedding ceremony took place and the new home. The bröllop is preceded by an engagement. But in Sweden the engagement doesn't necessarily involve a proposal. WHEN DO SWEDES GET MARRIED? Most Swedes get married during summer. 45 % of all marriages in 2010 were held in June, July or August. JUL 12 NUMBER OF WEDDINGS 9 000 8 000 7 000 6 000 5 000 4 000 3 000 2 000 1 000 July August November December March May January February October WHO PAYS FOR THE WEDDING? The wedding couple, and if they're lucky their parents contribute. DE 101ioo DE 70110460 FIVE D OLLARS STAG NIGHT AND BACHELORETTE PARTY No, Borat is not Swedish, but some stag nights and bachelorette parties are still about making a fool of the Bride or Groom. Luckily though, it's getting more popular to just do fun stuff with your friends, sort of the last night with the gang. THE BRIDE 32.9 The average age of the bride in Sweden 2010. THE GROOM 35.5 The average age of the groom in Sweden 2010. THE SACRILEGIOUS SWEDES The Swedish church, a Lutheran church, was separated from the state in 2000. Almost 70% of the Swedish population is members of the Swedish church, but only 2 % of the church's members attend Sunday services regularly. WEDDING CEREMONY Before the wedding you have to choose between a church and civil service. In spite of the non-religious character of the Swedes, the majority of services are held in a church or at least by a priest. At a Swedish wedding the bride and groom walk down the aisle together, and all the guests stand up (the same goes for when leaving the church). The Swedish church does NOT support the idea of a bride being “given away" by her father at the altar, as no woman is owned by anyone. Historically a Swedish wedding dress was black, but these days essentially everyone wears white. Rings aren't exchanged at the wedding - in Sweden that's done at the en- gagement. Only the bride gets a new ring at the wedding (although it's becoming more popular for the groom to get a second ring too). After the ceremony all the guests wait around the church doors/the church stairs to greet the newlyweds as they come out. Often bags of rice are passed around so people have some to shower the couple with (for good luck and prosperity/fertility). Some- times the rice is exchanged for rose petals or soap bubbles (though this has a tendency to stain pretty dresses. We don't like this). The newlyweds are then whisked off in a horse drawn carriage, a classic car or the equivalent, for some more photos along with the bridal party. The guests make their way to the reception hall where the Bride's toast is prepared. Champagne is served when the newlyweds arrive at the reception hall and everyone stands to cheer to the bride('s awesomeness). This is a good time to check the seating charts ahead of dinner. Gifts are placed on a dedicated table at the reception hall. As a form of "ice-breaker", programs usually have an anecdote about each guest, so as to guide you to who is who, and give you a few topics to talk about. The toastmaster will guide you through the reception, and is also the one you should let know (ahead of time) if you intend to hold any speech or do a presentation or the likes. If you notice all the men suddenly standing up and making their way to the bride to kiss her, this is because the groom has left the room. Quickly stand up and make your way over to the bride too! The same goes for the ladies, of course, when the bride leaves the room. The reception is rounded off by the toastmaster declaring its cake time, and letting the guests know where the dance is. SAME SEX MARRIAGE In Sweden we are not gender biased when it comes to marriage. You can marry who- ever you choose, regardless of sex. Just like it should be. THE SPEECHES Speeches are an imperative part of a Swedish wedding, and of course there are some rules and traditions regarding them too. Perhaps most important, is the order in which the speeches are held. Note that speeches are to be kept at a maximum of 3 minutes! 1. The first speech is a welcome speech, held by the best man. 2. The most awaited speech is the one held by the Father of the bride 3. Father of the groom 4. Priest (if you have one) 5. The older generation 6. Siblings 7. Wedding party 8. Family/relatives 9. Friends 10. The toastmaster will read any messages efc 11. Thank you speech. THE FOOD Traditionally a three course meal or a buffet is served. WEDDING CAKE The reception is rounded off with the wedding cake. The bride and groom cut a slice of cake together to cheers from the crowd. Everyone is served cake, and the party begins to break up. You may now move to a different seat. FIRST DANCE AND PARTY After the cake it's time for the wedding waltz. If it's a fancy wedding a band will play, otherwise there's a DJ or even Spotify playlists are getting popular. The first dance is just for the wedding couple, after that the bride will dance with her father, and the groom with his mother - thereafter, guests may join them on the dance floor. However, remember one thing; NO Gangnam or Harlem Shake until after the first dance! The part carries on until the wee hours, but with a break around 1 am for a midnight snack called "vickning" - often consisting of hot dogs or Janssons Frestelse = casserole of potato and pickled sprat. THE WEDDING NIGHT Is often spent in a wedding suite, and it's custom that the wedding couple sneak away without telling their guests where the night is spent. THE MORGONGÅVA Morgongåva is Swedish for "morning gift" - a dower. It's given by the groom to the bride the morning after the wed- ding. Traditionally the morgongåva is a piece of jewelry. Originally the morgongåva was given to a wife for her sup- port in the event that she should survive her husband. AFTER THE WEDDING The day after the wedding brunch is served for all guests, and after that it's time to say goodbye - for now. A few months later a thank you card should arrive in your postbox. AND THEY LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER!..OR DO THEY? Statistics show that about 20 000 Swedish couples divorce every year. In fact, in the year 2010, 23 593 divorces were registered, a new Swedish "record". On the other hand, almost 51 000 marriages were registered the same year. 20k divorces every year in Sweden Infographic by Andreas Ivarsson, Free to use as long as you link to my blog Read more about the Creative Commons license at CC BY NC April June September

A Swedish Wedding for Beginners

shared by andreasivarsson on Mar 28
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An infographic that guides foreigners to how weddings work in Sweden. We have som very special traditions.


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