“Fetch the bride” exists also on modern Chinese weddings, the process is : groom departure, gate crash(door blocking games), tea ceremony, wedding couple arrival and photo shooting in the bridal chamber. Timing of departure and arrival is very important, usually the minute should end with 8.
Date time: 2017/4/8
Location: Myfine hotel
Groom departure: Rui’s parents’ apartment
Bride arrival: Rui’s parents’ apartment
1 – 7:58
The groom and his bestmen
他们打扮好从家里出门到酒店去，新郎骑马，其他人走路, 并伴有花轿, 他们同时还携带者一个红包袱以及其他礼物。
They get ready and depart（the groom on a horse, other people carries an empty sedan） from the apartment towards the hotel(Myfine) in order to pick up the bride.
They bring a red package and other gifts.
The horse and Chinese sedan are important means of transportation in traditional Chinese important occasions.
2 – 8:28
They arrive at the hotel
When they arrive at the entrance of the hotel, they inform the bridesmaids. One of the bridesmaids goes downstairs and fetch the red package, it contains:
The red dress for wine toasting, a red belt and the wedding shoes.
The first handshake
She takes the red package upstairs and hides the shoes.
Finding the shoes is one of the challenges for the groom
The gate crash
The groom with his friends vs the bridesmaids and friends of bride
The famous gate crash!
There are lots of challenges for the groom before he can take the bride away. To challenge the groom so that he cherishes the bride more in the future.
The challenges on the wedding will be published on another post.
5 新郎家的礼物 The gift from the groom
The cousin of the groom
The cousin of the groom presents 2 golden pigs, there are a red money bag under both the two pigs. The big one is a gift for the bride’s family, the small one is given to the brother as gift.
In the old days in Huainan, the groom will give one/half a real pig to the families of the bride as gift.
The final challenge
新郎 The groom
After the groom enters the bedroom, the following things will happen:
The groom looks for the shoes and puts them on for the bride;
7 改口茶 The tea ceremony
新郎 The groom
改口茶 Perform the tea ceremony
He addresses them also as parents.
8 分家饭 The splitting
娘家人 The bride’s family
Bride’s mom prepare the egg boiled in red sugar, she will feed the bride and her sister.
This means the bride from now on no longer belongs to the family.
The sister of bride combs the hair for the bride and say some words to wish her luck.
9 出门 The exiting
The bride 新娘
Exit the hotel
Usually the bride would be carried by her brother to the sedan, if she does not have a brother, she can wear the shoes of her dad.
10 出发在路上 On the way home
The bride, groom and others (except for families of bride)
Everyone（except for the parents of the bride） will now return to the apartment, the bride will walk under a red umbrella, before she enters the sedan she changes the shoes.
The red umbrella would act as a shelter in order to avoid evil spirit on the bride.
12 到达 The arrival
新娘 The bride
The bride comes out of the sedan with the help of the bridesmaid, before she exits, she throws a handkerchief in which wraps coins and candies to the sky.
The reason why the bride throws the coins and candies in the sky is to distract others so that they do not tease the bride when she arrives.
13 Entrance 进门
新郎新娘 The groom, bride
新郎背着新娘进门，伴随着新娘进门的东西还有： 子孙桶， 红箱子和台灯。
The groom carries the bride on his back and they enter the apartment. There are 3 things following them which is considered as ‘stuff from the bride’:
A lamp, a red luggage and a lucky bucket
The lamp would be lightened for the whole night to chase away the evil spirit.
14 红糖水 The brown sugar soup
婆婆 The other mom
The mom of the groom has waited for a while at the door, as soon as the bride arrives, she feeds her with some red sugar soup.
The red sugar soup means the wishes for the couple “From now on, lead a life which is prosperous/ flourishing and sweet.”
15 进新房 Enter the bridal chamber
The groom unveils the bride.
16 改口茶 The tea ceremony
新娘 The bride
This the end of the ‘fetching the bride’ ceremony. After some pictures it is the lunch ceremony which is described in another post.
Thanks for everyone who was there with us, i hope you enjoy it as much as i do!
More about traditional Chinese wedding:
1. Wedding decorations
2. Gate crash
3. Tea ceremony
4. Chinese wedding outfit and Chinese sedan
5. Formal ceremony – Bai tang(拜堂)
6. Bridal chamber rituals
7. Wedding Proposal
8. Pre-wedding photo shooting(Behind the scenes)
9. Chinese wedding agency
10. Our wedding lunch menu
11. Our wedding program 1: Fetch the bride
12. Our wedding program 2: The lunch ceremony