Blogtober Challenge – Day 7 – My First Chinese Wedding

I finally was able to attend a Chinese wedding! My friends Nico (Western male) and Zoe (Chinese female) got hitched! They had the ceremony in her hometown Dongying (东营). This city is a three hour train ride from Jinan. There weren’t many tickets, since it was National Holiday, so we had to stand for three hours! 🙁 Luckily some seats were free for the first hour. Rian and I boarded the train at 7:35 in the morning of the Wedding Day and made it just in time for the wedding. We returned that night with some other friends completely exhausted.

My First Chinese Wedding

General Sequence of Events

1.The Bride and Groom must get the wedding certificate

 

2. Time to begin preparations for the wedding

 

3. The Groom has to buy a house, apartment, and rings.

 

4. Then he has to get the apartment decorated (with a bunch of red decorations that have the Chinese character meaning double happiness).

Chinese Wedding - Decorations in Living Room Chinese Wedding - Decorations in BedroomChinese Wedding - Decorations in Living Room

5. Find a person to help choose a day to get married

If you read my post about Superstitions, you know that Chinese people love Numerology and certain numbers are deemed auspicious. Did you know that on August, 8, 2008 (the day of the Beijing Olympics) many people were married? It’s because 8 is considered a lucky number because it rhymes with a word that means “wealth”.

READ  Blogtober Challenge - Day 6 - Things I Am Superstitious About

6. On the morning of the wedding day, the Bride gets ready with the Maid of Honor. The Maid of Honor needs to hide the bride’s shoes in a room.

 

7. While the Bride is getting ready, the Groom and The Best Man must prepare red packets (5 or 10 kuai in each).

 

8. The Groom and Best Man then needs to go to the Bride’s home to deliver the Red Packets and pick up the Bride.

 

9. The Groom cannot enter the home until he finishes answering questions about the Bride (prepared by the Maid of Honor).

 

10. The Groom then has to find the Bride’s shoes that were hidden earlier and help the Bride put on her shoes.

 

11. The Bride and Groom then go to the hotel to begin the ceremony.

 

12. The ceremony will begin with the sound of firecrackers. If you are ever in China and hear firecrackers, it’s probably because someone is getting married.

Chinese Wedding - Flower Boy and Girl 2 Chinese Wedding - Flower Boy and Girl 2

13. When the Bride is at home, she wears a red dress. During the wedding ceremony she wears the wedding gown. After the wedding ceremony she then changes to a Qipao- Chinese traditional dress(旗袍)

Chinese Wedding - Jonny and Ellie with Bride and Groom
2 Married Couples. Jonny & Ellie / Nico & Zoe. Look at Zoe’s Qipao!

14. During the ceremony there is a “MC” who introduces the Bride and Groom and tells their love story.

Chinese Wedding - Mandy is MC
Mandy the MC!

15. This part is considered the most important part. The Bride and Groom publicly call their in-laws “Father and Mother” as opposed to “Uncle and Aunt”.

(Uncle and Aunt is a polite way to address another person who is older than you and who you don’t have a close relationship with).

16. Next is the exchanging of rings and vows

Chinese Wedding - Exchanging of Vows and Rings

17. After the ceremony, the reception begins.

 

18. The Bride, Groom, Best Man, and Parents then have to toast each table. They can’t eat until they are done 🙁 Thankfully they are able to drink coke or water. I wouldn’t be able to handle toasting every table at my wedding. It will be too many people!

Chinese Wedding - Toasting

19. There will always be too much food and people taking leftovers!

Chinese Wedding - Table
This was just the starters…

 

Nico & Zoe’s Wedding Differences

Rian and I didn’t get to make it to the first half! However, I heard they set off firecrackers while they were leaving to the hotel. So that was shocking!

Nico & Zoe’s wedding was short and sweet! They had this slideshow that showed their pictures of when they first were together, up until their wedding photos. I was literally glued to the screen admiring their love story!

Nico’s parents and family weren’t there, but they sent these cute videos that played after the ceremony! Zoe’s Mother also gave a loving speech to the couple. I understood most of it!

Chinese Wedding - Friends Chinese Wedding - Friends photo with Bride & Groom

 

What are weddings like in your country? Have you been to a wedding in a different country before? Let me know in the comments below!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Neha T

    Thank you for allowing us to virtually attend this beautiful wedding. In India too the wedding is detailed celebration. I wish I can share to explain the experience. The dresses are detailed and so are food events function and preparation. I would love to attend Chinese wedding someday.

    • Tyra Skinner

      I one day hope to attend an Indian wedding! I’ve inky watched on TV, but I bet it’s wonderful in person!!

  • FarsicknessTraveler

    I’m a huge fan of tradition so this is really cool. You also looked stunning !!

    • Tyra Skinner

      Thank you beautiful!!! I love tradition as well. I’ll probably be mixing a lot in my wedding!

  • Helene Choo

    Oh yay! Chinese weddings are fun:) I’ve been to a few in Luxembourg. I would love to attend one in China though, sometime! And I would love to attend an Indian wedding, too!

    • Tyra Skinner

      The Chinese Wedding was different for me to see. I can’t imagine Ho it is when both partners are chinese!

  • Alex BetterTogether

    I went to a chinese wedding a couple of years ago – it was incredible! I love weddings and used to work as a wedding planner so loved reading this!

    • Tyra Skinner

      I feel like with Chinese weddings you NEED a wedding planner! That’s amazing that you got to be a part of an important memory in someone’s life! I bet it was stressful at times!

  • Alexi R

    Wow this is fun! I haven’t experience like this one yet. What I had last time was Vietnamese wedding, but its far from Chinese ways and tradition.

    • Tyra Skinner

      I never been to a Vietnamese wedding, but I have been to one where the groom was Vietnamese and they translated the sermon. What were some of the things like?

  • I have also attenes a lot of wedding ceremonies in China. Durinh the dinner, there are a several activities including the bride lighting up the male guests cigars.

    • Tyra Skinner

      Whaaaaat?! That’s interesting!! Yeah at Nico and Zoe’s wedding they supplied each table with free cigarette packages. Completely forgot to Put that in that in the post. hopefully one day I can attend another Chinese wedding where both people are Chinese. That would be a story to tell!

  • Heraa Farooq (Scarlet)

    Looks like you enjoyed a lot. I love visiting weddings from different culture you get to learn a lot about the places.

    • Tyra Skinner

      Yes I had a great time! I learned a lot that day and even when writing this post!!

  • I have attended and observed the cycle of Chinese wedding events closely here in Malaysia. It’s quite elaborate and so much fun. 🙂 Cheers!!

    • Tyra Skinner

      I’m curious how it is in Malaysia! Anything different from what I said before?

  • Silver Surfer

    That’s the last time I am going to complain about standing for 30 minutes on the tube in London if you had to stand for three hours!

    Apparently a lot of Chinese couples come to London to take pre-wedding photos with the bride and groom fully dressed in wedding dress and tuxedo etc.

    • Tyra Skinner

      Hahahaha! When you come to China, you laugh at how much things you complained about before!😂

      Try loooooooovveee taking those pre-wedding photos. It’s either for a slideshow, or a picture book, or to hang the wedding photos in their room. Nico and Zoe had some cute funny ones. I think less traditional because they aren’t both Chinese.

  • Digital Travel Guru

    I love attending traditional weddings, this one looks fabulous, enjoyed seeing the process and photos. My feet would have been dead after standing for 3 hours LOL.

    • Tyra Skinner

      Hehehe, thankfully I wore flats! I wanted to wear these cute heels that matched, but my boyfriend cautioned me. Glad I needed his advice or I would have been dying!

  • This is a great post! Loved learning about Chinese weddings, I am hoping to get invited to one whilst we are here!! 🙂