Chinese Weddings

traditions to incorporate into our wedding

My fiance is from Singapore (his grandparents immigrated there from China) and suggested I come up with some wedding traditions that were relevant to his family background to incorporate into the wedding.  He honestly cannot advise me much other than to say that girls seem to have a few dresses and there's a lot a food.

This is all especially difficult because I know his parents pride themselves on being liberal and nontraditional.  They objected to the inclusion of a tea ceremony in his sibling's wedding.

I would like to make them feel welcome and included because most of our wedding is going to be done the way my family does things.  Has anyone got any suggestions they might not object to?  I honestly have no idea what a Chinese wedding looks like.

Re: traditions to incorporate into our wedding

  • edited December 2011
    Why is it YOUR responsibility to come up with traditions appropriate for HIS background?

    There is a thread about 3 below yours called "Need help with chinese traditions" - there are a bunch of ideas there. (Keep in mind my family is from Hong Kong; Singaporeans may be a bit different.)

    But I would suggest asking his parents about what they want to include, and also getting your fiance to help with the research. If he doesn't know anything about Chinese wedding traditions and his parents aren't keen on it, you don't have to do it just because he's Singaporean. The things we included, we did so because they were important to us and my family.
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  • littleteacuplittleteacup
    10 Comments
    member
    edited December 2011
    Honestly, people have different roles in a relationship and mine tends to be the more public one.  I don't think it's good to go and criticize other people's relationship dynamics.  We all do things in different ways.  I handle social obligations, he makes dinner.

    He suggested it, but we talked it over and he was honestly not sure what we ought to do.  It's not so much that he's placing the responsibility on me as it is that I'm trying to think of suggestions I might run by him.   There haven't been a lot of weddings in his family in recent years, and he's only been to very few.

    My ability to speak to his family is very limited by language.  If I had a few ideas that might work nicely, he could run them by his mother and father for me.

    I did look at the other threads but they were not particularly helpful to me and I didn't think the ideas in them were appropriate to my wedding.
  • edited December 2011
    Hmmm...why do you think the other ideas were not appropriate for your wedding?  The most popular Chinese traditions to incorporate into a wedding would probably be the tea ceremony for the parents, the Chinese dress for the bride and perhaps Chinese favors the guests.  But, since you said that your future in-laws didn't want a tea ceremony, I think that having a Chinese dress to change into during the reception would be good.  Another tradition that might be fun is the groom "picking up the bride."  But, I'm not sure if you're having a church ceremony as well, and I know that some brides/grooms don't like to see each other before the ceremony.  Would you consider having a Chinese style banquet (serving 8-10 courses, family style) or perhaps incorporate Singaporean food into the menu?
  • edited December 2011
    tea ceremony is by far the most traditional aspect of a chinese wedding. however, FI and I will not be doing that.

    ways that we have incorporated chinese traditions....our colors are red and gold, used chinese character on our invite and will be using that same character on our favors.
  • K&K4everK&K4ever
    First Comment
    member
    edited December 2011
    My fiance is a Chinese American and we wanted to incorporate some traditions into the wedding too!  Since his parents wanted it to be the "bride's" style they didn't tell us any traditions since we were clueless... anyways i did some research and am just incorporating small things like:
    • Double Happiness - it is supposed to bring good luck to the bride and groom
    • A pig roast - a whole animal is supposed to represent wholeness for the new marriage and bring good luck to the couple.
    • Paper cranes - i don't know if this is Chinese, but I am using oriental style paper to make 1000 paper cranes.  It is supposed bring good luck or to grant you a wish or something like that... I thought it was a neat idea and will use them as hanging decorations throughout our reception area. 
    • the date - we are having the date of the wedding checked out to make sure it is good for "us" and our parents, it's a Chinese thing, and the only thing his parents wanted us to do that is "traditional"
    • Red - is the wedding color of china, it's not my main color but i am doing little accents to incorporate it into the decor
    • dragon and phoenix - representing the bride and groom - i was planning on having it embroidered somewhere on my dress (in an inconspicuous spot) color on color just to have the symbolism incorporated into the clothing like in a traditional wedding 
    I hope this helps!  I know it hard to incorporate Chinese traditions without really doing the traditional wedding.  Good luck! :D
  • edited December 2011
    The 1000 paper cranes thing is Japanese.
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  • edited December 2011
    I would do the Chinese food caterer.  The family style dinner would be great!  I want to do that for my wedding but the venue will only allow food from their caterer Frown
  • edited December 2011
    As a first generation Chinese American I also wanted to incorporate Chinese traditions to my wedding. My parents never had a wedding and even saw some of the traditions as "too old fashioned," keep in mind that his parents may have suffered in the Chinese Revolution and thus dislike certain traditions. 

    For me, I would like to incorporate red, and paper cranes (even if it is Japanese) and maybe even some Chinese alcohol! A great suggestion I had from a friend was to have a completely Chinese themed cocktail hour! I thought about having red lanterns, dragons and phenix as part of the centerpieces, beverage napkins in double happiness symbol and doing the tea ceremony during that time. You can also see if his parents had a song they loved in chinese and maybe using that as your first dance!

    Good luck! I'm sure that the wedding itself will please all your family members!
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