Friday, December 8, 2006

Mexican Wedding Traditions

Q: We’re looking to add a special touch to our Mexican wedding ceremony. Do you have any ideas? Perhaps something traditional in Mexico?

A: There are several ways to add a special touch to your Mexican wedding. Here are a few ideas:


1. Mayan Ceremony: This spiritual ceremony is presided over by a Shaman (Mayan Priest) in the Mayan language, and includes ancient rituals and music to put the couple in perfect harmony with nature. You will find Mayan ceremonies throughout the Mayan Riviera in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico.

2. Mexican Wedding Lasso: A lasso made of flowers, beads, jewels, ribbon, etc. is placed around the bride and groom in a figure-8 shape as they say their vows. The lasso symbolizes the couple’s love and union, and is kept by the bride as a memento.

3. 13 Coins: The groom offers his bride a gift of 13 gold coins (arras), which is blessed by the Priest during the marriage ceremony. The tradition symbolizes the groom’s trust in the bride and his promise to provide for her for during their married life. It is said that the 13 coins represent Christ and his 12 apostles.

4. Mariachi: The traditional music choice for Mexican weddings and receptions. Usually a mariachi group consists of at least two violins, two trumpets, one Spanish guitar, one vihuela (a high-pitched, five-string guitar) and one guitarrón (a small-scaled acoustic bass).

5. First Dance: At a traditional Mexican reception, guests join hands and form a heart shape around the newlyweds during their first dance as husband and wife.

6. The Dollar Dance: A Mexican tradition where guests offer money in exchange for a dance with the bride or groom. One guest pins some money on the bride or groom and dances with them until the next guest pins their money.

7. El Muertito (The Little Death): Usually performed during the reception, this Mexican tradition involves lifting the groom over the shoulders of the male guests and tossing him several times in the air.

8. Mexican Wedding Cookies: These small round sugar cookies, called ojarascas, are traditionally made with pecans, but can also be made from other nuts including almonds and pistachios. The cookies are given as wedding favors to guests.

9. Mexican Favors: In addition to wedding cookies, favors given to guests can include fans, note cards featuring Mexican artists, or pottery.


1. Sand Ceremony: During the wedding ceremony, the bride and groom pour two small vases of sand into one dish, symbolizing their unity as husband and wife.

2. Flower or Shell Release: At the end of the ceremony, guests are given a flower petal or seashell to make wishes on behalf of the bride and groom, which is then released into the ocean.

3. Butterfly Release: Guests are given butterflies in individual boxes at the beginning of the ceremony, which they release at the end for a beautiful display of colors. As a variation on this ceremony, during turtle season, we have heard of guests releasing baby turtles into the sea.

4. Throwing Rice: Since it is now considered harmful to birds, the traditional practice of throwing rice at the end of the ceremony has been replaced with birdseed, flower petals, bubbles, or balloons.

5. Other: To add a special surprise for your wedding guests during the reception, many resorts can arrange a firework display, fire jugglers, drum shows, or traditional dance shows.

1 comment:

Anna said...

That was an interesting post!!I got to learn a lot about the Mexican traditions. You can also peep into my wedding blog to have a glimpse of my thoughts and ideas on wedding!!

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