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It’s official, my Groom has something to wear!

11 Apr

BIG, VERY EXCITING NEWS… our tartan has been designed AND ordered.
(insert applause and sigh of relief here)

One of the main wedding-oriented tasks we wanted to accomplish on our trip to Scotland was the making of this tartan. After much encouragement from American family and friends, I was surprised when the Scottish’s friends were the ones who thought it was a little unnecessary and over-the-top. I guess it makes sense, their culture doesn’t buy into the crazy, big weddings that we do on this side of the pond and while they are all so excited to come to the wedding, they are just being practical and I totally understand that.

But since making a family tartan was deemed “top of the list important” to the Scottish and I, on the day after my arrival the Scottish and I sat down at a website that not only let us pick our colors but also arrange each color at different widths. We decided to follow a pattern we liked so that our tartan had a good chance of looking somewhat normal. Our colors were taken from the wedding theme and I’m thrilled with the result.

Once the kilt was designed, the Scottish went online to register it. We recently found out that we can’t use just the Scottish’s surname because your clan/family name would have to be registered by the the Court of the Lord Lyon in Edinburgh and that is usually reserved for historic family clans that already have tartans. And I totally get that, plus we can’t just make a kilt for every person with that last name, but we CAN make it specific to our branch of the Scottish’s last name. The woman at the Scottish Register of Tartans suggested we use both of our last names with a hyphen in between. So not only will my new last name be associated with the kilt but also my maiden name, pretty cool right?

We have to wait about a month and a half before it arrives but I can promise you there will be a follow-up post with more details.

For now, I am really excited and here’s why:
1) It’s the Scottish’s first kilt!! He’s never worn one before and I’m happy to announce that he’ll be wearing his personalized kilt for the first time on our wedding day.

2) We now have a family tartan!! For those of you who’ve read about my kilt woes then you understand how much I wanted this special element of his culture to be incorporated into the wedding. I picture us passing down the tartan from generation to generation, and it’s my way of embracing his country and it’s traditions (which isn’t always easy with us living in the US).

3) This is one more thing we can check off the wedding to-do list! Usually it’s the bride who orders her dress first because of the time it takes to get in and altered, but in our case, the Scottish got to join in the joys of formal-wear-ordering-fun.

Before I unveil the design, here are a few tartans we looked at for inspiration.

Rangers Tartan

Colhoun Tartan

Those are both lovely but it’s time for the big reveal and without further ado, HERE IS OUR NEW FAMILY TARTAN:

(insert last name here) Tartan

Unfortunately it’s a small photo and it’s nearly impossible to see all the different lines of color, but the majority of the tartan alternates between plum and a forest green. I’m sooo curious to see how the colors look in person!

Finally, I know it’s not good etiquette to talk about money and budget when pertaining to the wedding but I pride myself on the honesty of this blog and I like to express gratitude when it’s due. The Scottish and I are grateful to his parents for helping with the monetary expenses of buying a custom-designed kilt, and want them and everyone to know how special they are to us.

Quote: “KILT, n. A costume sometimes worn by Scotchmen in America and Americans in Scotland.” Ambrose Bierce

Fat Bastard is my favorite fictional Scottish Character

18 Mar

“Get in mah belly!!!” I’m quite good at reciting this line from my all-time favorite movie series EVER, Austin Powers. I think Mike Meyers is a comedic genius and that trilogy has been making me laugh for as long as I can remember. My brother and I used to entertain the family with lines from the movies while we sat around a campfire roasting marshmallows. Good times. And while I can very succinctly replicate Fat Bastard’s accent, I am a big failure when it comes to copying my fiancé’s Scottish accent. I always seem to sound British cockney or Australian, Irish, or just plain mentally ill. However, my interpretation of his accent is always good for a laugh and last night while drinking beers with our friends who were in town from Minnesota, we came up with the moronic brilliant idea that at our wedding, the Scottish should thank everyone in an American accent, and I should thank everyone in a Scottish accent. That way our toasts will surely be memorable.

It got me thinking less about my venue stress and more about how I want to incorporate as much Scottish tradition into the wedding as possible. Thanks to Best Friend, I found a website called “Scottish Wedding Dream,” and finally have found some time to explore it and since I was exploring I thought I would share my findings with you, my readers. Below you’ll find a few gems that I figured were worth sharing in a segment called Traditions Part One.

All quotes are taken from here: I hope you like Tartans.

Traditions Part One
Handfasting. I love being engaged and I love that I get almost a year to prepare for marriage and to enjoy my final days of being legally single before I commit to the love of my life. Back in the medieval times in Scotland, they had a similar engagement period known as handfasting. It’s essential marks the start of a “trial-run” of the marriage and the bride and groom’s hands are tied together with a cord or cloth of tartan pledging themselves to each other. One year and one day later they decide to either stay together and have a wedding or to separate. And being very egalitarian about it, either party could decide not to go through with it. My favorite reason behind handfasting is this:
“There were practical reasons for this arrangement. Children were needed to work in the father’s trade. During this year, the bride’s fertility, or lack thereof, could be determined.” So basically it’s like the modern-day couple living together before getting married, but without birth control since the goal is procreation. OH how times have changed.

Surnames. The whole idea of taking the man’s last name is such a personal thing that I don’t think any woman should feel bad no matter what she chooses. Some feminists consider changing your name to be a step back for women everywhere, whereas some conservative brides consider it a disrespectful act to keep your maiden name. I don’t care what anyone else does, but I have decided to change my name. To me, it’s a symbolic act that outwardly shows the joining of my life with the Scottish. Plus, my mom took my dad’s name, and it makes me feel good to follow that tradition. Why should me taking my future husband’s name have anything to do with my views on gender equality? I still am who I am regardless of my last name, and I plan to become famous either way. 🙂
On a peculiar and interesting note, Scottish tradition states that it’s bad luck if couples share the same first letter of their last names. It is eloquently explained in this rhyme:
“To change the name
and not the letter
Is to change for the worst
and not the better.”

Umm, yea, doubtful… BUT I am going from an “L” to a “C” just to stay on the good side of my Scottish luck. 🙂

Stag and Hen Parties. Translation: Bachelor and Bachelorette Parties!! WHOO-HOOO!! Since I’ve known the Scottish he has always referred to his big event as a “Stag Do,” and it makes me feel inspired to call my upcoming girl fest a “Hen Do.” Why the heck not?? Apparently, embarrassing the groom goes back a looong time because tradition states that the groom had to carry a basket of stones on his back while walking through town (called Creelin’), unless his bride were to give him a kiss, then he could stop. What fun that sounds like… I suppose it’s not much different from the “Let’s get the groom so completely trashed and make him do stupid stuff” that happens these days. Pretty sure my Scottish would prefer to get drunk before being embarrassed.

They say the Hen Party started because people used to bring gifts for the bride-to-be’s upcoming wedding feast (sort of like a Bridal Shower?), and often times these gifts included hens. Then a few days before the wedding everyone helped pluck the hens and prepared them to be eaten. While I love the idea of having a “Hen Do,” I’m gonna go ahead and say right now that I prefer lingerie and kitchenware to poultry.

That’s it for now, but there are so many more traditions to discover. One tradition told to me by FMIL is to add a bit of white heather to your bouquet for good luck. I think that’s my favorite one so far!!

Is anyone else incorporating their heritage into their wedding planning? Or has anyone seen a cool wedding tradition in action? If so, what are they?

Quote: “The judicious bride saved these special feathers to stuff future pillows and comforters for her home.” Scottish Wedding Dreams Website

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