Friday, July 25, 2008

Swedish Wedding Traditions

One year ago this weekend I attended my first Swedish wedding. The ceremony for my sister and her Swedish husband brought me to Sweden for the very first time and that trip, that experience, will always hold a special place in my heart.

The ceremony in the Swedish countryside, in Snavlunda (southwest of Örebro and north of Askersund) opened a window into the world of Swedish wedding traditions. For starters, at the ceremony, the bride and groom walk down the aisle together. The groom is not left standing and waiting for the bride. They walk together to begin their new life together.

Following the ceremony (an outdoor ceremony, light sprinkles did not begin to fall until after they exchanged their vows) we enjoyed many toasts, led by a toastmaster, and a Swedish smörgåsbord. The dinner, also outdoors, but covered to protect us from the scattered showers, included vegetarian options, such as summer vegetable quiche. A traditional Swedish smörgåsbord usually includes herring and Jansson’s Frestelse, Swedish for Jansson’s Temptation (a creamy potato casserole). Lots of singing (the song books were helpful) accompanied dinner.

After dinner, a wedding tradition I've never seen before involved the bride and groom sitting with their backs to each other, with an announcer asking them questions such as "who does the bulk of the weekly grocery shopping, who fell for whom first?" The bride and groom responded by raising a Swedish clog for every "I do/I did" answer. I recall my sister and her husband both raising their clogs numerous times amid lots of laughter.

Below you will find a photo of one of their three wedding cakes. I'm also including a photo of a Prinsesstårta (Princess Cake, a double layer sponge cake with marzipan) served at my best friend's wedding last November (my friend is not Swedish, her husband is not Swedish, but they both love Prinsesstårta!)

© 2008 Lisa Sculati

No comments: