Danish Wedding Traditions

In Denmark, there is a traditional custom called the “Gate of Honor” which is an arch of pine branches built in front of the home of the bride’s family. The Gate can be attached to the doorway or somewhere freestanding across the path leading up to the house. The Gate of Honor is erected once again for the couple’s silver anniversary.

During the reception the groom will disappear and all the male guests will come up and kiss the new bride. The female guests will kiss the groom once the bride disappears. Also, the guests will gather around the groom and use scissors to cut his tie and socks. Speeches and songs for the bridal couple are a personal and touching part of the reception.

According to etiquette, the brudevals (the bridal waltz) must be danced before midnight. The guests encircle the bride and groom and clap to the dance steps of the waltz. Closer to the end of the song the guests slowly walk toward the bride and groom giving them less and less dance floor space until there is none.

The Kransekage is the customary wedding cake. The newlyweds cut the cake together and all of the guests must eat a piece, otherwise it is said to bring bad luck to the marriage.