Moroccan Weddings are unique and full of tradition. The pre-ceremony activities begin approximately one year ahead of the wedding. The Moroccan tradition is that once the bride is chosen, the groom begins to offer her gifts, such as milk which signifies purity, and sugar which signifies a happy life. If the groom’s family is wealthy the gifts could also include, jewels, gold, perfume, handbags, etc.
Two days before the wedding, tradition requires the bride, her female family members, and girlfriends to be bathed in milk to purify them for the wedding. During this ceremonial bathing, there are traditional songs sung by all the females in attendance.
The next ceremony to take place is the Moroccan Henna. During the ceremony there is a Hennaya (a professional Henna Artist) whom draws symbolic shapes, and designs on the hands and feet of the bride and the women involved in the wedding ceremony as a sign of luck for the bride’s new life.
The day of the ceremony begins with traditional music, songs of praise, and Koranic verses. All of the guests then migrate to a large wedding hall where the bride who is dressed in a traditional caftan (dress) and the groom head to the Amariya. The Amariya is a large carriage that is carried around the room by four strong men so all guests can see, take pictures, and wish the couple best wishes. Once carried around the room, the bride and groom are then seated in large chairs in the center of the room for the actual ceremony. Throughout the ceremony the bride can change her outfit up to seven times and ending in a white wedding gown.
After the ceremony there is a big party full of Moroccan dishes such as pastille (a pie in puff pastry stuffed with a fricassee of pigeon or chicken, almonds, sugar and cinnamon), Mashwi (baby lamb), Tajine (stew meat with prunes and almonds), couscous, pastries, cookies, and traditional mint tea. After some eating and dancing the party will usually end around 5:00 am. The newlyweds are then escorted by parade through all surrounding neighborhoods to the house of the groom. This is where sometimes the bride must circle around the house 3 times before she can enter the home, or sometimes the mother-in-law will feed the bride milk and dates as a sign of welcome. The way of the parade, changes from family to family depending on their family marriage tradition. Below are a few photo’s of what a traditional Moroccan wedding would look like.
Morroccan Bride: Via untilmorroco.com
Moroccan Henna Ceremony: Via Moroccoboard.com
Moroccan Wedding: Via flyawaybride.com