For English weddings, the bride and groom typically have a list of wedding gifts but for Chinese, we are more practical. All we want is money, partially to pay for the wedding costs and partially to pay your mother-in-law!
You might be wondering what is a Bridal Door Game? This is a game played when the groom picks up his bride on the day of the wedding. The bridesmaids will give the groom and his group of ‘brothers’ (best men) a list of tasks/games to do before the groom is allowed to fetch his bride. But they have to pass all the tasks/games!
Hope you’ve enjoyed my Chinese Wedding series so far where I have covered gifts, tea ceremony, hair combing ceremony and Yue Lao. This week, I am writing about ‘small uncle’ or in English tradition this is called a Page Boy. In a Chinese Wedding, our ‘small uncle’ have a very important role than just walk together with the bride.
Following my recent theme on Chinese traditions, I decided to write about Yue Lao who is the god of marriage. Without him, there wouldn’t be any wedding. According to legend, Yue Lao appeared as an old man under the moon. He is like cupid but instead of holding a bow and arrow, he is holding a red string. If he ties the red string onto the couple, they will fall in love and get married.
Why it is necessary for hair combing (梳頭, shūtóu)?
Chinese believe that it will bring long and lasting marriage. So both bride and groom will have their own hair combing ceremony.
When should it be done?
It is conducted on the eve of the wedding by the women, typically the parents.
In this photo of my aunty, the ceremony is done before the groom came to fetch the bride. Both parents said the four blessings:
一梳梳到尾 (1st combing, be together till the end of the road)
二梳百年好合 (2nd combing, happiness and harmony together till old age)
三梳子孙满堂 (3rd combing, blessed with many children and grandchildren)
四梳白发齐眉 (4th combing, blessed with longevity)
The Wedding Tea Ceremony is one of the most important events at a Chinese wedding. My mum insisted we must have a tea ceremony because we didn’t get married in a proper Singaporean Chinese way. Mr C and I got married in Bath and it was a small wedding with close family and friends only. So when I told some of our friends that we are having a tea ceremony after the registration, no one understood what that meant. As a result of the mix-up, two of our friends went back home after our registration and missed the wedding dinner. Sometimes it is hard to explain to others why we have a Chinese tea ceremony during the wedding day so I decided to write this post.