Why do brides wear garters?

+93 votes
asked Aug 6 in Culture & Society by Marissa (1,530 points)
edited Aug 9
I was reading a book on weddings recently and the book made mention of the groom pulling the garter off. Why do brides wear it?

2 Answers

+12 votes
answered Aug 13 by Trish (730 points)
edited Aug 14

The tradition of wearing the garter during weddings is believed to be one of the oldest wedding practices that has survived up to this generation. There are two theories that explain the origin of wedding garters and why they are still in vogue after such a long time:

  1. This practice can be traced back to the 14th century when English wedding guests believed getting a piece of the bride's clothe will bring them some kind of luck. To preserve her wedding dress, the brides started throwing their wedding garters at male guests. Some male guests attempted tearing the garter from the bride's leg. To preserve the dignity of their new wives, the grooms started removing the garter and throwing them to the single male guests.
  2. Another English tradition about the wedding garter that dates back to ages ago had the male wedding guests stalking the new couple into their inner chambers. They threw old stocking at the newly wedded couple and the single male whose discarded stocking hung on the nose of either the bride or the groom's nose is believed to be the next in line for marriage.

Most brides today wear two garters during their wedding. One for keeps and one for kicks. They wear both garters on their right leg. The groom used to remove one of the garters with his teeth, but this is no longer the practice. It is now considered most appropriate for the groom make use of his hands while removing the garter. He then throws the garter to all the single male guests. Whoever gets the garter first among the single male guests is believed to be the next groom in the block.

+1 vote
answered Aug 8 by STANATASIA (970 points)
edited Aug 9
Why do brides wear garters? It is just a wedding game, and nothing more.

The groom tears the garter off using either his teeth or his hand depending on which he fancies.

The bride tosses the bouquet to the maids of honor, while the groom tosses the garter to the single male guests. The single lady who catches the flowers is given a chair to sit, while the single male with the garter places the garter on the floral catcher's leg.

And one myth says the garter catcher and the floral catcher are the next to get married as a couple.
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