I didn’t attend many weddings when I lived in Japan 20-odd years ago and only found out today that the traditional Japanese bridal head-dress, tsunokakushi (角隠し), literally means HORN CONCEALER!
It was/is believed to hide the bride’s “horns” of jealousy, ego and selfishness, and is a sign of her commitment to be a gentle and obedient wife.
With the gorgeously ornate tsunokakushi worn by brides now, I imagine (read hope) that the origins of the tradition are somewhat lost, and wearing one is now more an aesthetic decision, much like the western wedding veil. But that’s for another blog post.
Either way, take this as another reminder that the world is full of wedding traditions and you only have to follow the ones that work for you. Traditions are just peer pressure from dead people.
Photo from M’s One beauty salon (coincidentally in Gifu, my nearest city when I lived in Japan) via Wedded Wonderland 😈
I received a press inquiry this week asking whether couples should coordinate their wedding outfits. This question both resonated with and rankled me.
It was a well timed question; this week alone I’ve been working on coordinating outfits for three couples and it’s certainly something I’m seeing more of, for different reasons.
That said, my couple planning their traditional white wedding are also incorporating the same fabric for elements of their outfits. In this case, the bride is wearing a hooded cape and the groom a bowtie in the same pale pink velvet.
It can be a cultural, which is true for my bride and groom planning their Ghanaian-British fusion wedding. In Ghana, the bride and groom’s outfits are made from the same fabrics, which is what I’m doing for the them, making the bride’s dress from the same traditional kente fabrics as the groom’s outfit.
The third couple are both wearing black with custom embroidered motifs that tell each of their stories.
Now for why the question rankled. First, being for a western publication, it was inherently western-focused but this excluded the cultures and traditions of other countries that are honoured here, such as my British-Ghanaian couple.
I also (politely I hope) asked the journalist not to forget weddings involving two grooms, two brides or non-binary couples who I also see coordinating their outfits, probably more so than heterosexual couples.
And finally, the classic word “Should.” I don’t like to see “should” in any question about weddings, other than that the couple should love each other and should wear whatever the hell they want, matching or not. 😊
NB photos are not of my work or couples; their weddings are still to come so the details are top secret!