Top 6 Australian wedding traditions and customs

Aug 11, 2021 | Wedding Stories

The union between two people is always beautiful, but what makes it truly special are little differences. Every culture has its own wedding traditions. Asian cultures feature a tea ceremony while Mexican couples exchange their wedding rings with a lasso or rope draped around their shoulders. But what about here in Australia? In a country that is so multicultural and diverse, we have incorporated wedding traditions from both our First Nations people and from around the world.

While there is no such thing as the “traditional Australian wedding”, there are some important symbols and rituals that we Aussies still like to take part in. So how does Australia celebrate marriage? Here are some of our favourite Australian wedding day traditions and customs!

Acknowledgement Of Country

Here in Australia, we have a deep acknowledgement of the land around us and these days, many couples are choosing to add an ‘Acknowledgement of Country’ to their wedding ceremonies. This simple statement pays tribute to the original custodians of the Australian land and honours the heritage.

A Classic White Wedding Dress.

Nowadays, brides are opting for wedding dresses in different colours – from blue and grey to pink and rose. However, the white wedding dress remains a well-loved tradition. Whether you choose a dress in champagne, off-white, ivory or something similar, there’s nothing quite as iconic as the image of a bride walking down the aisle in a white wedding dress.

Wishing Stone Ceremony

Another historic indigenous custom is the stone ceremony. In this ritual, every member of the wedding is given a stone. They will then take part in a wishing stone ceremony, typically held near a large body of water. Each person then tosses their stone into the water and makes a wish for the bride and groom. In a modern twist on this tradition, guests can also write their wishes on the stone, and put the stone into a bowl or vase for the happy couple to keep.

Parents Walk Down the Aisle

In many Western cultures, the father will walk the bride down the aisle. However, here in Australia, both parents usually receive this honour. What’s more, walking down the aisle is not limited to the bride. The groom can also make an entrance with his parents!

The Wedding Smoking Ceremony

This ceremony can take place during the Welcome to Country ritual and is an ancient custom with deep spiritual meaning. The couples are fanned with the smoke of burning plants or herbs that ward off evil spirits, bless the marriage, and have healing properties.

Nutbush City Limits

It turns out that Australia is the only country in the world that does the Nutbush City Limits dance. Learned in school gyms all around the country, this line dance is incredibly popular and makes an appearance at all Australian weddings. Everybody knows the moves, so the dancefloor is always packed when the Nutbush is on!

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