A wedding garter set typically consists of two garters: one to keep as Main Garter and one to toss to the single men at the wedding reception. The tradition of the garter toss dates back centuries and is believed to have originated in Europe.
Here’s a breakdown of what a wedding garter set typically includes:
1. The main garter:
The main garter: often referred to simply as “the garter,” is a symbolic and decorative accessory worn by the bride on her wedding day. It is typically worn around the thigh, just above the knee, underneath the wedding gown. The main garter is an important element of bridal attire, often chosen to complement the overall look and theme of the wedding.
Here are some key aspects of the main garter:
- Design: The main garter comes in a variety of styles, ranging from simple and elegant to elaborate and ornate. It is commonly made from soft and delicate fabrics such as lace, satin, chiffon, or silk. The design may feature intricate lacework, delicate embroidery, beadwork, pearls, sequins, or other decorative elements. Some brides opt for personalized or customized garters that incorporate their wedding colors, monograms, or other meaningful details.
- Symbolism: The main garter holds symbolic significance in wedding traditions. In many cultures, it is considered a symbol of good luck and fertility. The tradition of wearing a garter dates back centuries and is rooted in folklore and superstition. In medieval times, it was believed that owning a piece of the bride’s clothing would bring good fortune, leading to the custom of guests attempting to take pieces of the bride’s attire as keepsakes. To prevent this, brides began wearing a special garter to be given away as a token of luck.
- Placement: The main garter is typically worn on the right leg, just above the knee. Some brides choose to wear it on the left leg, depending on personal preference or tradition. It is usually positioned discreetly under the wedding gown, allowing the bride to easily access it for the garter toss tradition without revealing it during the ceremony.
- Garter Toss Tradition: One of the highlights of many wedding receptions is the garter toss tradition. During this lively and often entertaining moment, the groom removes the main garter from the bride’s leg, usually with his teeth or hands, and tosses it to the single male guests gathered at the reception. Similar to the bouquet toss for single women, the man who catches the garter is believed to be the next to marry. The garter toss is accompanied by music, cheering, and sometimes playful competition among the male guests.
- Keepsake: After the garter toss, the main garter is often kept as a cherished memento of the wedding day. Some brides choose to preserve it in a shadow box or display case, while others may incorporate it into a scrapbook or memory album. The main garter serves as a tangible reminder of the joyous celebration and symbolizes the beginning of a new chapter in the couple’s life together.
Overall, the main garter is a beautiful and meaningful accessory that adds a touch of tradition, romance, and whimsy to the bride’s ensemble on her special day. It holds significance not only as a symbol of luck and fertility but also as a cherished keepsake that will be treasured for years to come.
2. Tossing Garter:
This is a separate garter specifically designated for the garter toss tradition during the wedding reception. The tossing garter is usually simpler in design compared to the main garter. It is intended to be thrown by the groom to the single male guests at the reception, following the tradition similar to tossing the bridal bouquet. The single man who catches the tossing garter is believed to be the next to marry, adding an element of fun and excitement to the celebration.
These two garters serve distinct purposes within the context of wedding traditions. While the main garter holds sentimental value for the bride and is worn as part of her bridal attire, the tossing garter adds a playful element to the reception festivities and involves the participation of the guests. Both garters contribute to the overall ambiance of the wedding day and are symbolic of love, luck, and the start of a new chapter in the couple’s life together.
The wedding garter set is a symbolic and fun tradition that adds an element of excitement to the wedding celebration. It is often accompanied by lively music and cheering as the groom retrieves the garter from beneath the bride’s dress and tosses it to the awaiting crowd. The single man who catches the toss garter is said to be the next to marry, much like the woman who catches the bridal bouquet.
Overall, a wedding garter set is a special accessory that holds significance in wedding traditions and serves as a memorable keepsake from the happy couple’s special day.
Keepsake Garter: This is a special garter that the bride wears on her wedding day. It is often more ornate and decorative than the toss garter. The keepsake garter is typically made from luxurious fabrics such as lace, satin, or silk and may feature embellishments like crystals, pearls, or lace appliqués. It is meant to be a keepsake from the wedding day and is often preserved as a memento of the occasion.