When we think about the color white, it’s all snowflakes and virgins and soap right? It makes sense that white makes us think of things that are clean and bright and fresh, because the color itself (at least in American and European cultures) represents innocence, perfection, honesty and cleanliness. On the color spectrum, white is the color the human eye sees when it looks at light which contains all the wavelengths of the visible spectrum, at full brightness and without absorption. (This is true only when we’re talking about light. If we’re talking about pigment, then black is what you get when you combine all colors) Check out that cool picture below for the visual explanation of what white looks like within the color spectrum.
So if white doesn’t have any hue, then that means that it can also be thought of as a kind of blank slate right?
Maybe not. Actually- forget the maybe part- it isn’t a blank slate at all. White, perhaps more than any other color we’ve talked about, has at least one undeniable cultural connotation. When I was researching for White Week, I noticed a strong theme emerging. A very strong theme. It had something to do with roses and cakes and dresses. “I do” anyone? Weddings are a HUGE business in this country. Nearly $72 billion is spent on weddings annually and Las Vegas is the top wedding destination with over 100,000 weddings a year, followed by Hawaii at 25,000 weddings a year. I was in Hawaii this past summer and there were at least 2 weddings a day (!) at the hotel we stayed at and that is no exaggeration.
So weddings are pretty major affairs and one of the biggest part of any wedding ceremony is the symbolism and ritual that every couple incorporates into their celebration. I could go on and on just listing interesting rituals and facts about brides and grooms and weddings in cultures around the world (and believe me, I’ve killed some time reading about some very bizarre things). For instance; I now know that in Ethiopia, women from certain tribes place plates in their lower lip in order to entice a rich groom. The larger the protruding lip, the more a groom will pay. This makes me glad I’m not part of an Ethiopian tribe!
The wedding, more so than any other tradition, seems to be mostly a rite of passage. It is a rare woman who doesn’t, at some point in her life dream of the big white wedding, and if she’s already had one of her own, she’s dreaming of when her son or daughter will have one. These are premiere parties where the bride and groom and their families get the starring roles. These are insanely expensive parties that require months and months of planning and strategizing. The details that the couple must traditionally pay attention to (do the petals on the boutonniere match the cocktail napkins? Should we sit my Aunt Jenny at the same table as your Uncle Fred? We need 120 handpicked songs for the DJ to play so that everyone at the wedding will have at least a few songs they can dance to etc.) are immense. Honestly, I’m exhausted just thinking about it! Despite the work and money though, weddings do have some customary standouts– like the cake. Did you know that traditionally, the wedding cake symbolizes fertility and prosperity? Cool huh?
I also love the way that weddings give the bride and groom an opportunity to honor their friends and close family. There is something very special about taking the time to appreciate the people who make your life what it is. Despite the moments of chaos that tend to ensue during weddings, I think the point is that the wedding isn’t just of the bride and groom, but it’s also a marriage of each of their families and groups of friends. When I begin to question why it could possibly make sense to spend as much on a wedding as on a down payment for a house, that’s what I remember, the unique opportunity weddings present to have all of your special people in the same place at once.
Another established tradition is the giving of jewelry to the bride and her wedding party. Did you know that we do a booming wedding jewelry business here at Luscious Metals? We’ve made some of the coolest bridesmaids gifts and also some gorgeous jewelry for brides too. We have made wedding rings and repurposed heirloom family jewelry into new contemporary pieces for the bride to wear on her day as well as groups of pieces that are each original in their own way, designed to be special for every different woman in the wedding party. It’s always a blast since there is such joy and excitement from the clients around their wedding day and every thing that goes into it. Check out our wedding collections.