Latin American & Brazil Wedding Traditions
Every culture has its own unique wedding traditions, and these are often passed down through the generations. Latin America and Brazil have their own particular wedding traditions and customs that are tied with their respective histories and cultures. If you or your partner happen to be of Latin American or Brazilian descent, and you’d like to incorporate some traditional customs that are tied with your or your partner’s heritage into the wedding, then we have a few suggestions to help you with the planning process.
You might be wondering, why did we post information about Latin America and Brazil separately? Isn’t Brazil a part of Latin America? Well, not necessarily. While Brazil is a part of South America (which is home to a host of Latin nations), Spanish isn’t the predominate language—it’s Portuguese. Much of the country’s culture and history has been dramatically influenced by Portuguese culture, which while similar to Spanish culture, is still unique in its own right. While there are similarities between Latin America and Brazil, they are different enough to be considered separate in terms of their respective histories and cultures. In terms of Latin American wedding traditions, here are a few traditions that you might consider adding to your wedding.
It’s important to recognize which nations' customs or traditions will be incorporated into the wedding. For example, in Argentina, the bride’s father traditionally escorts the bride, and there usually aren’t any bridesmaids or groomsmen (though is a very traditional concept). In Spain, Mexico and Panama, it’s common for the groom to offer the bride a collection of gold coins that symbolize his ability to provide for their future family. In Mexico, the godparents are often very involved in the ceremony, and in Guatemala, it’s sometimes customary for the bride and groom to be “bound” to one another with a silver rope. In terms of food, each nation has its own unique dishes that can be featured in the wedding. For Spain that’s tapas (small, savory appetizers) and empanadas are big in Mexico and other Central American countries. Furthermore, flan is especially popular in Mexico. If you really want to go all out for a Mexican-themed wedding, you can hire a Mariachi band to perform during the reception!
For Brazilian weddings, it’s often common for the bride and groom to read their vows in Portuguese. Some of the most important traditions pop up during the reception, as it’s common for DJs or bands to play samba music (traditional pagoda dancing is encouraged too!), and for traditional drinks like caipirinhas to be served too (these are typically made from lime and sugar cane). Tables at the wedding are often labeled with the names of popular Brazilian cities, so that guests can sit with others who are from the same town. Traditional cookies, like casadinhos, are also served as well. The bride and groom are also encouraged to offer gifts to their parents too.Whatever traditions you end up choosing for your wedding, we’re confident that you’ll end up having a great time!