A Break down of an actual day wedding. (GATE CRASH/ TEA CEREMONY!)
酸甜古拉, literal translation - Sour, Sweet, Bitter, Spicy. Every typical Chinese wedding, we will always anticipate this morning activities where bridesmaid gather at the bride's place as early as 6am! To start preparing for the "breakfast" for the groomsmen. It said that this tradition to is ensure that the groom will go through the 4 elements of life. To persevere and crash through the gate (AKA Gate crash) to get to the bride. Making the groom work for the bride, 迎亲. I am sure we have all heard, seen or even experienced this activity one way or another, and we all know how this can go down. We have seen very extreme tasks for groomsmen, to really funny ones!
Although this is something many would anticipate for, and while this may be fun, you do not want your husband-to-be to be sweating over the dancing and climbing, or getting a diarrhea over the bowl of "wasabi mix, chili padi mix, Korean spicy paste noodle". I bet some of you must be smiling right now. So! Do communicate with your bridesmaid party and ensure that the games are not "too overboard" for your groom and the groomsmen party. After all, it is only the start of the day on your actual day wedding!
Actual day wedding run down!
We have been to actual day wedding that starts as early as 5am! That being said, on average actual day wedding preparation starts between 6.30am to 7am. The arrival of make up artist (MUA), bridesmaid as well as the media team (photographer and videographer). There will be many things going on concurrently in one morning, bridesmaid preparing for the gate crash, bride dolling up, media team taking some behind the scene motions while grooms and groomsmen prepare their arrival.
Bride should be preparing for the veiling ceremony with the parents, while bridesmaid should be ready for the gate crash. Any last minute touch ups and or hair do for the bridesmaid.
Groomsmen party should be arriving any minute, and at this point, bride should be properly veiled and should be waiting in her room. The younger male of the bride's family should be waiting at the car park for the arrival of the groom, and to open the door for the groom. At this point, the gate crash party should be ready and here goes the quest to "fetch the bride".
~ 8.30am - 9.15am
The gate crash activities begin! Groomsmen will go through the activities that the bridesmaid had planned, and for the bridesmaid party, possibly making some ang bao money! The atmosphere will be filled with fun and laughter from families and friends, as the groomsmen party complete every station. However, always have a time keeper to ensure that it does not overrun the schedule. The last thing you want, is to be rushing over the whole morning and exhausting yourself before the dinner banquet. Finally, fetch the bride! Get one 1 knee, present the bouquet of flowers, lift the bride's veil, and kiss your bride.
~ 9.15am - 9.45am
After a fun filled morning, you have finally fetched your bride. Now, what is this "fetch bride or 迎亲?" Traditionally this ceremony is for the groom to fetch the bride back home to meet the groom's parents. This is where the bride will leave her paternal home, and leave with the groom. As this point, all groomsmen to be ready by their car, and bridesmaid to load up the car and get ready to leave with the bridal car, en route to the groom's house. Now, at this point, as according to your own culture and tradition, some may want am umbrella held by the bride's parents to shield the bride into the car, and as they leave, the bride to discard the traditional folding fan and never look back.
~ 9.45am - 11am
Arrival of brides and groom, alight the car and proceed straight home. At this point the grooms families and friends would be waiting eagerly to see their in-laws. Again, according to your own tradition, couples may be ushered for prayers if not, take a break and let the bride change into KUA AKA " 群褂 ". At this point, groomsmen and bridesmaid can take a rest while the bride is changing while preparing for the tea ceremony. Remember, traditionally it always starts with the groom's family. Once the bride is changed and ready, older folks might want the couple to have sweet dessert AKA "糖水", signify a sweet loving marriage (甜甜蜜蜜，恩恩爱爱）.
Tea ceremony (敬茶）! It always starts with the groom's parents, follow by the the relatives in a descending order. Although some might want the grandparents to go first as a gesture of respect. At this point, do prepare the tea set, usually in gold or red. Bridesmaid will help to brew the tea, while the groomsmen will help to receive the gifts in gold, silver, red packet.
~ 11am - 1230pm
Once the affair over at the groom's place is done, we are to then return back to the bride's place for the tea ceremony. Likewise, return back to bride's family, prepare for tea ceremony, take a break and have lunch.
Basically anytime from now onward are free time, while hotel check in are usually at 2.30pm, bridal party would usually like to go for a short outdoor photo taking, while on the way to the hotel. Or even a car rolling shots.
anddddddd! This is the end of this article, please note that this is our version of an actual day run down based on our experience. In between these activities, you may wish to add on, or adjust the timings. There are no hard rules to an actual day wedding. Although, older folks might have auspicious timing for the couple, else in this era, everything is possible.
We are not wedding planners, we are just actual day wedding photographers who happens to have some experience. Do contact us for your actual day wedding photography, or video services. We are more than happy to meet up with you and discuss the details. No obligation!
Stay tune for the run down for dinner banquet next week!