Ever been to a Traditional Greek Wedding? They are certainly a big affair!! Remember the movie ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’? image that, but a thousand times louder and bigger. Here are some things that will happen at every Greek Wedding, some of these may not apply to all, but we’re pretty sure most of them do!
1. Anyone and everyone is invited.
Open Greek weddings are as we say ‘anoixto gamo’, where literally everyone is invited, because the wedding isn’t complete without the kiosk owner’s third cousin.
2. Naturally, every “Maria, Marios, Andreas ” under the sun is in attendance.
3. And the whole town/village knows about the wedding.
Whether you like it or not, if you are getting married then expect the whole village to find out about it and most likely they will sit indoors awaiting their invite.
4. Non Greeks won’t really know what’s going on.
This is usual when ‘Non-Greeks’ are in attendance at a Greek ceremony and in their eyes see certain traditions fall in place.
5. Like when the bride stamps on the groom’s toes.
When the priest says “the wife shall fear her husband”, she shows who’s boss.
6. Or when the stefana are exchanged.
To crown the now husband and wife, blessing them to have a blissful life together.
7. To be fair, some traditions are a bit odd.
A little boy (or girl) is thrown onto the couple’s bed. With the hope that the couple’s first child will be a boy (or a girl).
8. The bride lists all the names of her unmarried girlfriends on the sole of her right shoe.
At the end of the night, the names of the girls that have rubbed off are said to be the next to get married, and will not be left ‘on the rafi’ (on the shelf)
9. And the groom is shaved by the koumbaros (best man).
This shows that you trust the man that will stand beside you.
10. If you’re not married, you’ll be interrogated.
Guests will go up to the unmarried family members and say: “And much happiness for your wedding day!” Thank you for the unnecessary pressure.
11. Which makes you feel really old.
“You’re 26 and not married? WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU?”
12. No matter how delightful the decor, the in-laws will continue to bicker.
Every Greek woman has their own separate views and they will let themselves be heard, whether you like it or not.
13. The emotional send-offs are raw.
Families think they will never see each other again but really they’ll end up living next door. This is typical for Greek fathers, their daughter will always be their little girl and in their eyes you are leaving them.
14. A token of “boubounieres” never taste as good as they look.
Detail, quality and the look of the final product, is what most guests will see not what is being served inside.
15. There is always a lot of food
You will certainly not go hungry at a Greek wedding.
16. Don’t worry, you will manage to fit the Loukoumades or Karidato in somewhere.
Weddings is not just about the main courses, there is always a selection of traditional Greek sweets. These are so tasty that you will always make room for these.
17. And by the end you are so full, you’re delirious.
But congratulations you’ve just eaten Mount Olympus in food!
18. At this point the Bouzouki makes an appearance.
Usually once food has finished, that is when the party starts with the Bouzouki player starting it off in true style with Laika and Rembetika (traditional Greek Songs)
19. Yes. Plates are smashed too.
But not the expensive stuff. It’s all about the cheap sets.
20. There’s high quality gossip, lots of it.
“Have you seen Maria? She got fat. And Nick just got divorced.”
21. Mothers scout for eligible men for their daughters.
22. And come to a standstill, when an absolute God turns up.
23. Meanwhile, money is pinned on the bride and groom mid-dance (a Greek Cypriot tradition).