A True Italian Wedding: 5 Ingredients for a Perfect Recipe

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A True Italian Wedding: 5 Ingredients for a Perfect Recipe

Posted by Chiara in Destination Weddings, Wedding reception 20 Ott 2015

Wedding Traditions


The typical Italian wedding has its own peculiarities, as it is in every culture and nation; one of the aspects of planning destination weddings is to learn to understand the different approach that couples from other countries have towards this important event of their life: there are other traditions, other priorities, expectations and needs to consider.

Sometimes it is necessary to mediate between the couples and those vendors who are not accustomed to these differences, but hey, that’s what destination wedding planners are for, aren’t they? 😉 (Do you want to know what else I can do for you as a wedding planner? Have a look at here and here!)

But in case you ACTUALLY WANT a real Italian Wedding Experience, here are 5 typical traditions and customs you might like to consider.



The 5 Ingredients for Your True Italian Wedding Recipe


1. The Serenade

This is a traditional party that takes place some days before the wedding: the groom gathers with some friends, relatives and musicians under the bride’s window to sing love songs, until she appears. She, then, joins the group downstairs and meets the groom who gives her a red rose (usually). Everything ends with some more songs, laughters and a joyful toast to the future husband and wife.


italian serenata

Under the bride’s window: la serenata



2. The Cutting of the Nuptial Ribbon

Accompanied by her father, the bride is about leave her family’s house, but on the threshold she has to cut a white ribbon, usually held by two flower girls or bridesmaids: this is a symbol of the important step she is taking and of the deep change that marriage will bring into her life.


cutting of the ribbon

The moment of the cutting of the nuptial ribbon



3. A HUGE Wedding Banquet

Everybody knows how important food is for Italians: it is even more important in such an event as the wedding!

The typical wedding banquet has a bit changed over time (or at least it has in my region, according to my memories as a child… because yes, there are also regional differences for what concerns Italian weddings, “but that is another story and shall be told another time.”*), anyway there is always a permanent feature: YOU EAT A LOT!

The average structure of an Italian wedding banquet is this:

  1. A very rich buffet of hors d’oeuvres (that might already be considered as a complete meal in itself, honestly)
  2. Two main courses (of pasta, of course, or sometimes one pasta dish and a risotto)
  3. A second course (either meat or fish) with a side dish
  4. Another big buffet of fruit and desserts
  5. The wedding cake
  6. Coffee, liquors and digestifs

Well, what to say after all this? Buon appetito!


wedding buffet

A wedding buffet at Castello Chiola



4. Bomboniere

In other countries the bride and groom often prepare little symbolic presents for their guests, the so-called favors.

But our Italian bomboniere are something a bit more demanding: they consist in a refined object, usually a piece of china, but also a vase or a picture frame and so on, always in a beautiful package with ribbons and decorations on it.

The bride and groom give their guests the bomboniere at the end of the receptions, as they are about to leave; the count is usually one for each family or couple attending the reception (one each for those guests who are alone).



Bomboniere packages ready for the wedding



5. Confetti

That is our traditional sugared almonds, not the little pieces of coloured paper that people throw around to celebrate 😀

They are usually given together with the bomboniere, inside tulle or fabric little bags: it is customary to put 5 confetti in them, that symbolize health, wealth, happiness, fertility and long life.

The “confettata” is also very common: a sort of little buffet with different kind of confetti in various flavours.



A beautiful all-white confettata table – Fibre di Luce




Here it is: our Italian wedding is ready to be served!

What do you think about it? Let me know in the comments below!

And if you need more information about how to have the wedding of your dreams, contact me!




*Quote: The Neverending Story, Michael Ende

Cover photo: Fibre di Luce




  • Claudia Carbonara 21 Ottobre 2015 at 2:34 PM / Rispondi

    I love this post and it’s totally true! 🙂

    • Chiara 7 Novembre 2015 at 5:45 PM / Rispondi

      I’m happy you liked it! ^_^

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