Wedding Etiquette Forum

"Four Weddings" Dollar Dance

Did anyone else see the dollar dance on Four Weddings (it aired on Friday) where they were actually pinning the money to the bride's dress? 

She looked like a stripper. Also, aside from the obvious, I was horrified that they were putting all those holes in her gown. 

Re: "Four Weddings" Dollar Dance

  • mlg78mlg78 member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    Wow...  What were the other brides points of view on that?
  • Yeah... I have no idea why people think it's an awesome tradition.
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  • They thought it was strange. They also thought it was gross that she had the dirty money on her white dress, which I thought was kinda funny.
  • In Response to Re::[QUOTE]Yeah... I have no idea why people think it's an awesome tradition. Posted by Peledreamsofrain[/QUOTE] I'm going to be the devil's advocate and be completely honest. I don't care if I get flamed for this. NOTE, this is just my personal opinion, I'm not giving advice. As a wedding guest the dollar dance is my favorite part of the reception. I always bring a fist full of singles to weddings. I dance with both the bride and the groom. I get to spend a minute with them and tell them how happy I am for them and share a laugh. Yes I know that's what a receiving line is for, but they always seem so formal and rushed. I'm disappointed if I go to a wedding and they don't have one. I feel strange walking up to the groom at a wedding and asking him for a dance, the dollar dance gives me a chance to do that without the awkwardness. I'm going to have a dollar dance at my wedding. Maybe it's against etiquette, but I really don't see the harm in it, and when I planned my wedding I thought of things I enjoyed at other weddings. The vast majority of people in my circle do them. If people at my wedding don't like the dollar dance they can sit out and take advantage of the short line for the bar. I will step down from my soap box now.
  • smalfrie19smalfrie19 Home of SB XLVIII Champs member
    Ninth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its Combo Breaker
    In Response to Re::
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re:: I'm going to be the devil's advocate and be completely honest. I don't care if I get flamed for this. NOTE, this is just my personal opinion, I'm not giving advice. As a wedding guest the dollar dance is my favorite part of the reception. I always bring a fist full of singles to weddings. I dance with both the bride and the groom. I get to spend a minute with them and tell them how happy I am for them and share a laugh. Yes I know that's what a receiving line is for, but they always seem so formal and rushed. I'm disappointed if I go to a wedding and they don't have one. I feel strange walking up to the groom at a wedding and asking him for a dance, the dollar dance gives me a chance to do that without the awkwardness. I'm going to have a dollar dance at my wedding. Maybe it's against etiquette, but I really don't see the harm in it, and when I planned my wedding I thought of things I enjoyed at other weddings. The vast majority of people in my circle do them. If people at my wedding don't like the dollar dance they can sit out and take advantage of the short line for the bar. I will step down from my soap box now.
    Posted by ErinElizabethR[/QUOTE]

    Honestly, I have never heard of a dollar dance before coming to TK (I am from the PNW) and I can completely understand both schools of thought. Yes it is tacky and rude to ask for money, which is basically what a dollar dance is. But, at the same time, if it is EXPECTED in a certain area, I believe it is less of a faux pas than if it was done in an area where it was uncommon. 

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  • In Response to Re::[QUOTE]In Response to Re::In Response to Re:: I'm going to be the devil's advocate and be completely honest. I don't care if I get flamed for this. NOTE, this is just my personal opinion, I'm not giving advice. As a wedding guest the dollar dance is my favorite part of the reception. I always bring a fist full of singles to weddings. I dance with both the bride and the groom. I get to spend a minute with them and tell them how happy I am for them and share a laugh. Yes I know that's what a receiving line is for, but they always seem so formal and rushed. I'm disappointed if I go to a wedding and they don't have one. I feel strange walking up to the groom at a wedding and asking him for a dance, the dollar dance gives me a chance to do that without the awkwardness. I'm going to have a dollar dance at my wedding. Maybe it's against etiquette, but I really don't see the harm in it, and when I planned my wedding I thought of things I enjoyed at other weddings. The vast majority of people in my circle do them. If people at my wedding don't like the dollar dance they can sit out and take advantage of the short line for the bar. I will step down from my soap box now.Posted by ErinElizabethRHonestly, I have never heard of a dollar dance before coming to TK I am from the PNW and I can completely understand both schools of thought. Yes it is tacky and rude to ask for money, which is basically what a dollar dance is. But, at the same time, if it is EXPECTED in a certain area, I believe it is less of a faux pas than if it was done in an area where it was uncommon.nbsp; Posted by smalfrie19[/QUOTE] I'm doing the dollar dance for no other reason than because I have fun participating in them at other weddings. That's it, I don't do things because of peer pressure or it's expected of me. I'm not trying to come across as a troll. I'm just being honest.
  • I have to admit that I'm a little biased because I had literally never seen or heard of one until TK, but having someone pay to dance with you just has a stripper vibe to it that weirds me out. That being said, maybe I would feel differently if it was a part of my culture. 
  • What *is* the history behind the dollar dance? Because I've never, ever, ever seen or heard of one, at least not until I started posting on TK. I live in Western New York; I don't think they're common around here at all. Is it regional? Religious? Ethnic? What's the story?
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  • In Response to Re: "Four Weddings" Dollar Dance:
    [QUOTE]What *is* the history behind the dollar dance? Because I've never, ever, ever seen or heard of one, at least not until I started posting on TK. I live in Western New York; I don't think they're common around here at all. Is it regional? Religious? Ethnic? What's the story?
    Posted by 32daisies[/QUOTE]

    Wikipedia says they are common in Poland, Ukraine, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Mexico, and the US. I couldn't find regions in the US though, maybe the regions with high populations of these cultures are where they are common. Just a guess.
  • It's a Polish and Hungarian tradition. My family is Hungarian so for my parents' wedding, for example, they had the dollar dance. It's starting to die out in my circle with my generation though.
  • My family continues to do the bridal dance to a specific polka song. We put it in an apron held by a bridesmaid.
  • edited May 2013
    Before TK, I'd never heard of a dollar dance where money was placed in baskets or aprons - I have since seen one. 

    My mom's extended family pins money onto the B&G, makes crowns and scarves etc.  Sometimes there's fake money mixed in.  They're Southeast Asian and it's a cultural tradition, I believe the reasoning is something along the lines of wishing good fortune or prosperity to the B&G.  I have never heard of dresses getting torn or other issues and usually everyone tries to minimize the number of pins put into the dress itself. It's always fun, full of laughter, and has lots of people lining up to dance.  It's done at every big family wedding and called the Money Dance. It always seemed like there was a room full of 200 of our extended family members and about 2 tables of the groom's family and B&G's friends so not a whole lot of people who are likely to be put out by it.

    We didn't have one.  Our family has been moving towards only inviting close family (ie. first cousins) due to the massive size of the family.  We didn't invite my mom's cousins and their families who would have expected it.  With only a handful of people at our wedding from that culture, it would have been really awkward and strange.

    Not trying to justify it since I do understand why dollar dances are considered to be tacky, but I have seen it be done this way many times and it's treated as a very joyous tradition.  My grandma always had a $5 in her purse for my grandpa at weddings because he loved the money dance.
  • In Response to Re: "Four Weddings" Dollar Dance:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: "Four Weddings" Dollar Dance : Wikipedia says they are common in Poland, Ukraine, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Mexico, and the US. I couldn't find regions in the US though, maybe the regions with high populations of these cultures are where they are common. Just a guess.
    Posted by Salsera29[/QUOTE]

    I think it's probably more common with those that have Polish/Italian ties than a specific region of the US.
  • We used to have it years ago. It was a variation on the theme though; people would pay (put money in a hat, not pin it on the bride) to have a dance with the bride. I remember seeing it at relatives weddings as a young child, but I haven't seen it locally in many years. I can't say for certain, but I don't remember them having one with the groom.

    I grew up in eastern Canada. (We are not having one at our wedding in August).
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  • Dollar dances are very common in my area.  Until coming to TK, I didn't realize that the majority of people find them against etiquette.  But now that I've heard the reasons, it makes perfect sense why they're a bit tacky/rude.  But I won't side-eye anyone who does it either.  I personally won't be doing one, because I hate it when people touch me unless I'm at a certain comfort level with them.  The list of people I'm physically comfortable with is very small.

    That said, I've never heard of pinning the money to the bride's dress!  That's crazy!  Yeah, it would definitely look like a stripper, and why would anyone want to put pins in their dress?!  That's nuts!
  • In Response to Re::
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re:: I'm going to be the devil's advocate and be completely honest. I don't care if I get flamed for this. NOTE, this is just my personal opinion, I'm not giving advice. As a wedding guest the dollar dance is my favorite part of the reception. I always bring a fist full of singles to weddings. I dance with both the bride and the groom. I get to spend a minute with them and tell them how happy I am for them and share a laugh. Yes I know that's what a receiving line is for, but they always seem so formal and rushed. I'm disappointed if I go to a wedding and they don't have one. I feel strange walking up to the groom at a wedding and asking him for a dance, the dollar dance gives me a chance to do that without the awkwardness. I'm going to have a dollar dance at my wedding. Maybe it's against etiquette, but I really don't see the harm in it, and when I planned my wedding I thought of things I enjoyed at other weddings. The vast majority of people in my circle do them. If people at my wedding don't like the dollar dance they can sit out and take advantage of the short line for the bar. I will step down from my soap box now.
    Posted by ErinElizabethR[/QUOTE]


    You can do whatever you want at your wedding, just understand that this particular action will make people uncomfortable.  I've seen people posting here about being cajoled into putting money into the pot and dancing with the groom,and feeling miserable.  I know I would.  I don't dance with men I don't know well.  I don't touch men i don't know well.  To be forced to pay to do so?  Nuh uh. The fact that the bride and groom can't be bothered to talk to me unless I PAY for thier time?  Unacceptable.

    Honestly?  If I knew there was a dollar dance upcoming in a wedding I was going to, I'd probably try to get drunk as fast as possible so the horrible awkwardness was lessened.  


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  • In Response to Re::
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: : You can do whatever you want at your wedding, just understand that this particular action will make people uncomfortable.  I've seen people posting here about being cajoled into putting money into the pot and dancing with the groom,and feeling miserable.  I know I would.  I don't dance with men I don't know well.  I don't touch men i don't know well.  To be forced to pay to do so?  Nuh uh. The fact that the bride and groom can't be bothered to talk to me unless I PAY for thier time?  Unacceptable. Honestly?  If I knew there was a dollar dance upcoming in a wedding I was going to, I'd probably try to get drunk as fast as possible so the horrible awkwardness was lessened.  
    Posted by Peledreamsofrain[/QUOTE]
    If someone is uncomfortable with it they can sit out, I'm not forcing anyone to do anything they don't want to do.
  • harper0813harper0813 member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Anniversary First Answer
    edited May 2013
    I have found dollar dances to be common in areas with a large Polish population - specifically, central Wisconsin and Minnesota. That's not to say WI And MN are overrun with dollar-dance-lovers and every wedding has one, but the Polish (-ski) side of my family has one at every wedding, and I expect one to be requested of the band at my wedding (like it has been in the past). I've already advised them to ignore the request.

    I don't judge others for having them, just like I don't judge people for having cash bars. Yes, you heard me. I don't LIKE cash bars or dollar dances, but they were common in my extended family when I was growing up so I never bat an eye. That being said, I PREFER that dollar dances not take place at weddings and I PREFER open bars at weddings. Open bars are a pleasant surprise. I know my family will be shocked and amazed - but also peeved that additional hard liquor (outside of our two cocktails) won't be available for purchase.
  • StPaul0102StPaul0102 member
    25 Love Its 10 Comments Name Dropper
    edited May 2013
    I'm not doing a dollar dance at my wedding because I'm not a big dancer in general so it would make me uncomfortable. But I get where ErinElizabeth is coming from. My relatives go NUTS for them. Most weddings in my area that I've been to (Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa) have them and there is a massive line, sometimes with people arguing to be first. I can say with certainty that my relatives would probably gossip more if a couple decided NOT to do a dollar dance. People think it's fun. Seriously, I swear to everyone who has never seen one, people who love them LOVE them and people who don't love them just go get a drink. 

    ETA: I understand they're against etiquette. I'm definitely not giving etiquette advice here. Just adding some Dollar Dance context for those who don't usually see them in their circles.
  • daria24daria24 member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary First Answer
    From my understanding of the tradition (I come from a Hungarian family, and from a very Polish area), the money dance used to be much tackier. The idea was to raise enough money to give the couple a good start in life, so the father of the bride would keep the dance going until he determined the couple had made enough money, he would demand more money from particular guests, etc. I don't think it was traditional for guests to give other gifts however, on top of the money at the money dance.

    There is a scene describing the pracitce in Upton Sinclair's The Jungle. 

    So it's hard for me to get up in arms about the modern version where people just drop $1 in a pillow case and dance with the bride or groom for 30 seconds. We didn't have one though. 
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  • In all Honesty, ever wedding I have been to has had the Dollar Dance. I believe it is a cultural tradition. From what my grandmother has told me when I asked about it when I was young, she said that not only doesn't it give people the opportunity to wish the bride/groom well, that passing the dollar is a way to wish prosperity and good fortune in their new life together.
    I always find it fun because I don't feel rushed through a receiving line like cattle. In my 27 years of attending weddings and the countless DD's I've been a part of, I have never seen anyone forced to dance with the bride or groom or have never seen anyone from the bridal party solicit $$ from guests with a bucket or hat or anything. The MC will announce the DD and whom ever wants to dance will get up and form a line if they choose. I feel that this time also allows people to take advantage of time to mingle with other guests or grab a drink and not feel guilty for leaving while any of the other events are going on.
    As for the pinning of the $$, yes, I've seen it pinned to the dress or veil depending on what the bride says...but most of the time money gets pinned to each other to create a train which minimizes the holes in the gown. I was recently the MOH in a wedding and the bride had a little satin purse that her grandma made for her.
    MusicSoul24
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