We understand that getting married can be a very magical yet stressful moment for some people. This is especially the case for those who are marrying into a different culture. There are more things to consider, such as which traditions (if any) will be adhered to, it is likely that there might be things to consider that you wouldn't have to if you was planning a wedding in your own culture.
First of all, Albanian weddings are not just a ceremony. They are seen as a huge festival for near and distant friends and family to enjoy and attend. It's not unusual for friends and family to travel 20 hours on a coach from their villages and town to attend a wedding ceremony. According to an old wives tale, if you get married when there is a full moon, it ensures that offspring will follow. Due to this many Albanian people prefer to get married when there is a full moon!
Albanian weddings usually end to last 1 week! There are several traditions that are followed concerning the to be married couple. The bride and groom each have their own celebration night that consists of guests singing and dancing to traditional Albanian songs. Everyone is invited.
It is traditional for the women to deliver a "dowry" to her partner. This package usually includes a range of gifts from the women to her partner's relatives. These can include things such as carpets, pillows and embroidery. Similarly, the groom must send presents and money to the bride's family. They have to be special gifts such as gold, clothes and sentimental pieces.
On the day of the wedding, the groom along with his "best men" will travel in fancy decorated cars to take his wife from her home. This is somewhat symbolic as the man is taking his wife from her family home to join his. Moreover, gunshots can be heard when the bride arrives at the grooms house. This is somewhat of a bizarre traditional which symbolizes a victory for the groom!
The actual wedding ceremony consists of a lot of dancing and singing! The bride and groom enjoy a first dance together before all the guests are invited to pin money on their dress and suit. A very traditional and enjoyable part of Albanian wedding ceremonies!
So there you have it, everything you need to know about an Albanian wedding!