Hawaiian wedding traditions: Clothing, flowers, food and decorations
Hawaiian wedding traditions, with tips on choosing clothing, flowers, food and decorations.
Hawaii is a magical place full of beauty and of special island traditions. Many people dream of a flower filled wedding on the shore of Maui as the sun sets slowly on the leeward side and the trade blow gently. Not everyone can travel there for their wedding but that doesn’t mean that they can‘t have a kama’aina (child of the land) infused wedding blessed by the Hawaiian love goddess, Hina.
To have a little fun and bring the spirit of the Islands to your nuptials, request that your guests and wedding party attend the ceremony in Hawaiian clothes. You can do this by having “aloha attire encouraged” on the invitations. The bride and groom can get into the act by wearing a Hawaiian influenced mu’umu’u (dress) and aloha shirt instead of a traditional gown or tux. You can still have a formal wedding and go Hawaiian at the same time however.
Flowers are everywhere in Hawaii. Lei are handed out for every special occasion. Most florists will be able to work with you to have lei made for members of the bridal party and anyone else you wish to include. You can also shop online for special wedding leis and head pieces. The flowers you most often find in wedding lei are white orchids and white ginger but you can use a broad spectrum of blooms. Men’s lei are generally made out of ti (tee) leaves and/or maile (my-lee) and are worn like a cord, draped around the neck instead of a loop.
Find out what the bride and grooms names translate to in Hawaiian. They can use that in the ceremony. In the background, have soft slack-key music playing on the background. When or just before rings are exchanged, the bride and groom can exchange lei as well. The families of the bride and groom can exchange lei to signify the uniting of the two families. With a little research on the internet, the perfect Hawaiian blessing can be found and used as the bride and groom kiss.
The reception can be luau themed. You will want to consult your caterer or do some online research to see if this kind of menu will work. The sky is the limit from a full roasted pig inti leaves to kalua pork sandwiches and lomi-lomi salmon. The tables can be decorated with loose orchid or plumeria petals and coconuts or pineapples for centerpieces. Hula dancers can entertain the guests as they dine. The bride and groom can dance to “The Hawaiian Wedding Song” and other dreamy island tunes as the wedding rolls on. A pineapple or coconut wedding cake can continue the theme. The flowers that adorn the lei can also be used to decorate the cake and tie everything together.
As the bride and groom make their getaway, the guests can throw more of the orchid or plumeria petals instead of rice or birdseed. It may take a bit more work than the everyday run of the mill wedding but it will be a day to remember for everyone in attendance.