The Bride Tea Ceremony

After he succesfully made it through the door game, the guys and his family piled into the house where the tea ceremony commenced. At the bride’s house, the groom’s family asks the bride’s family for permission to marry her to their son. (Full explaination of the ceremony here.)

These photos were taken by Mitch Ranger.

In a Vietnamese ceremony, the bride’s house has a sign at the front door saying "Du Quy" which essentially means "home of the bride".

Vietnamese Sign for Home of the Bride

Our ushers carried in the roast pig, a traditional dowry item.

The pig

In Asian culture, the mother of the bride is the one who takes her to her groom. My mother walked me down the stairs.

Then, my grandpa (the Bride’s representative), introduces the bride to the guests.

My family representative

Me

The guests

The guests

His parents tell my mother that they will love me as their own and wish to include me as one of their family members. At times, this was pretty emotional.

Groom's parent's asking for permission

Groom's parent's asking for permission

My mother was the tearjerker for sure, though. She said some private words and then granted him her blessing to marry me. They hugged, then I hugged =).

Groom's parent's asking for permission

Groom's parent's asking for permission

Caught little moment.

Sharing a moment

The representatives of each family light a candle and place it on the alter.

Lighting the candle

Jewelry, which is a significant part of the dowry, is then placed on the bride.

Placing a necklace on the Bride

Earrings are of the most significance to a Chinese bride. The groom’s mom offers the jewelry to the bride’s mom. In our family tradition, the bride’s mom then offers the groom’s mom to help her put on the earrings. (If it looks painful, it was. They were the screw-on type and they both had claws.)

Placing earrings on the Bride

Then it was our turn to light incense to my ancestors.

Lighting incense to honor my ancestors

After being accepted by the ancestors, we offered my family tea. Each family member accepted the tea and then offered us either advice or good luck wishes. The oldest couple goes first, then parents, then other immediate relatives.

Offering tea to my great aunt

If the room was dry, my mother changed that. She gave him an origami $2 heart, signifying that we were now two people with one life. In the middle of the heart was a dollar coin that my late grandmother had dipped in gold for her granddaughters’ husbands to hold safe.

Offering tea to my mom

Mom giving him the heart

More tea offerings

Offering tea to my uncle and his family[*]
Offering tea to my uncle and his family

Offering tea to my aunt

After we offered the tea, he got a dose of what it takes to be a woman. He tripped all over his traditional Ao Dai.

Ao Dais are tricky

Afterwards, the pig was cut in half to feed the guests. It is traditional to consum half of the offerings at the bride’s house and take the rest back to the groom’s house.

Cutting the pig

Guests eating

Around 11AM, everyone gathered outside to travel to the groom’s tea ceremony.

Off to Lansing

Here we go!

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