loyalhero90

White wedding dresses on non-virgins

40 posts in this topic

I think the OP is assuming all non-virgins lost their virginities (i.e. committed fornication for their first time). However, there are plenty enough cases of divorcee's and widows/widowers getting remarried. Either way, the who 'white dress' tradition doesn't phase me. I'm more confused by what someone who slept around in their younger years would want to do with the institution of marriage, aside from its government-mandated privileges. I mean, what's there that's so enticing and would have any meaning, such that a person like that would want to get married. For a divorcee' or a widow/widower, it might be a second chance at finding true love/their soulmate. The same for a wtm'er (except it would be their first real chance/shot). But a promiscous person/a person with a past. That boggles my mind, more than what color the dress is or whether or not a dress is worn (as opposed to more informal clothing).

Not quite. In my family even people who are divorcees and were widowed are still not expected to wear a white dress. In my community many do not they stick with blue or ivory. So a non-virgin includes all non-virgins. Also to the comment about me assuming that all non-virgins have lost their virginity...isn't that what a non-virgin is? A person who has lost their virginity?

I can see your point in why a more promiscuous person would want to get married but it happens all the time, at least where I am from (especially for the ones who committed adultery), and the older women have this thing against them wearing white wedding dresses because it carries the meaning of purity and hope. It equally boggles their mind why a non-virgin woman would wear white no matter the circumstance because white dress=purity/chaste/ young maiden. Of course this is different from the general population.

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I think marriage/monogamy has lost it's meaning/value precisely because people have many simultaneous sex partners (at worst) or are serial monogamists (at best) before they decide that they think it might be a good reason to settle down and get married. It's not at all surprising given these circumstances why divorce rates are so high, these people inevitably realize that they can't kid themselves that marriage is for them after they have gotten used to changing partners for so long.

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I think marriage/monogamy has lost it's meaning/value precisely because people have many simultaneous sex partners (at worst) or are serial monogamists (at best) before they decide that they think it might be a good reason to settle down and get married. It's not at all surprising given these circumstances why divorce rates are so high, these people inevitably realize that they can't kid themselves that marriage is for them after they have gotten used to changing partners for so long.

Agree 100%

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I think that because alot of religions teach that you can become 'purified' of your sins, and inherent in human nature is wanting to have your cake and eat it to that brides see absolutely no irony at all wearing white to their wedding if they've been sorry to be vulgar but penetrated by lord knows how many.

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Honestly? I've just always dreamt of wearing white, and do feel that I've somehow earned it... even if that is the wrong way to see it. I want to walk into the room (whether it's a big ceremony, or we run off) and, hopefully, see my husbands face light up with a smile. I even have my own sketch of what I'd like to have. Simple, elegant, something Audrey Hepburn would wear.

 

Though I don't have a problem with non-virgins wearing white, I find it admirable when I see a woman (who you know hasn't waited) wear a little color on her dress. One of my best friends wives did that. It was a white dress with a green trim. I thought that was very cool of her, even though I'm not sure she did it for that reason.

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White dresses were not originally intended to symbolize purity; they symbolized being really, really rich. From Wikipedia:

 

 

 

Royal brides before Victoria did not typically wear white, instead choosing "heavy brocaded gowns embroidered with white and silver thread," with red being a particularly popular colour in Western Europe more generally. European and American brides had been wearing a plethora of colours, including blue, yellow, and practical colours like black, brown, or gray. As accounts of Victoria's wedding spread across the Atlantic and throughout Europe, elites followed her lead. Because of the limitations of laundering techniques, white dresses provided an opportunity for conspicuous consumption. They were favored primarily as a way to show the world that the bride's family was so wealthy and so firmly part of the leisure class that the bride would choose an elaborate dress that could be ruined by any sort of work or spill.

 

 

Considering something like 87% of brides wear white, and about 97% of people aren't virgins when they get married, I don't think white has ever symbolized purity to the degree that we imagine it to have (heck, even back in the ye ol' 1950s way more people weren't virgins at marriage then we might think). Mostly, it was a trend that has morphed into a tradition. I would never assume that someone had waited because they were wearing white, and I would never assume that someone hadn't waited because they chose to wear red. Same deal with wearing slightly off-white colors (yes, I do know of some Southern parents who have been scandalized by their daughters wearing ivory or extremely light pink), wearing a colored sash on the dress, etc. Those stylistic choices have just been trending for the past 10 years or so (along with strapless dresses, unfortunately >>).

 

That said, if someone wants to wear white because to them it symbolizes having waited, that's totally fine. Just recognize that isn't what it means to *most* people, so there's nothing wrong with non-waiters choosing to wear it for their own reasons.

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Steadfast, that is interesting. I really like knowing what each color means. So, I looked it up. :) Even if it was never the intention of Queen Victoria for this to become a traditional meaning, it does make sense how it got the reputation as far as what white does represent. I, also, think this is a great example of how much what we grow up with affects us. I grew up believing that white dresses meant purity, and that virgins were to wear it... but that doesn't change that it was wrong. What it does show is how tradition meanings change over time.

 

Actually, that made me think of a fun topic. So, I'm posting a new thread... :D

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I thought blue meant pure. And white represents affluence because a white dress could only be worn once (think deb balls weddings etc) and the trend was started by Queen Victoria because she had the money to wear a gown only once where as everyone else got married in Sunday best. Also do you know how hard it has to clean a white dress in the 1800s? Also an entire color should not be off-limits. If I do have a wedding dress it's going to be red or purple.

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I thought blue meant pure. And white represents affluence because a white dress could only be worn once (think deb balls weddings etc) and the trend was started by Queen Victoria because she had the money to wear a gown only once where as everyone else got married in Sunday best. Also do you know how hard it has to clean a white dress in the 1800s? Also an entire color should not be off-limits. If I do have a wedding dress it's going to be red or purple.

 

I also thought that blue used to be the color for purity, before white replaced it more recently in the popular mind. I've heard that's why in almost all Madonna and Child paintings, Mary is depicted wearing blue. That could be totally off-base, though.

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I also thought that blue used to be the color for purity, before white replaced it more recently in the popular mind. I've heard that's why in almost all Madonna and Child paintings, Mary is depicted wearing blue. That could be totally off-base, though.

Good point! I never thought about that. Time to Google it! 

 

Someone from Catholic Answers said this: "...I think a real reason is because the children at Fatima saw Our Lady robed white with a blue mantle (sleeveless cloak)." -Charlie Zeaiter

http://forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=156329

 

Also this: http://www.colormatters.com/q-and-a/qa-colors/qa-blue

 

Anyways, light blue is my favorite color, so I personally would love a white wedding dress with a blue sash or something.  :)

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Good point! I never thought about that. Time to Google it! 

 

Someone from Catholic Answers said this: "...I think a real reason is because the children at Fatima saw Our Lady robed white with a blue mantle (sleeveless cloak)." -Charlie Zeaiter

http://forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=156329

 

Also this: http://www.colormatters.com/q-and-a/qa-colors/qa-blue

 

Anyways, light blue is my favorite color, so I personally would love a white wedding dress with a blue sash or something.  :)

 

Wow, seems like *everyone* has a totally different explanation. I guess it's a little difficult to pinpoint the exact origin of a 500+ year-old tradition, or something.  :lol: Fascinating!

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I definitely researched the history of white wedding dresses for my blog post last year, The Demi-Vièrge Wore White. My sources are linked there, but this is a quote from one of them.
 

     Long before Victoria, white was a popular choice for wedding dresses, at least among the wealthy nobility... Weddings were usually more about political alliances and transfers of wealth than they were about romance, and so the wedding dress was just another excuse to show the wealth and culture of the brides family... Before the invention of effective bleaching techniques, white was a valued colour: it was both difficult to achieve, and hard to maintain. Wealthy brides, then, often wore white to demonstrate their money, not their purity.

 

    In order to stimulate and support the lace industry [struggling due to industrialization], Victoria chose for her wedding dress a large piece of handmade Honiton lace... The rest of the dress then became a vehicle to showcase the lace, and white was chosen as the most suitable colour to do this. In the case of Victoria’s dress, white symbolised practicality and patriotism, rather than purity.

 

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I thought you all might like this short article. I'm not trying to make a point here at all. Just thought it was a fun read. I guess it's hard to know exactly how some traditions come about, but this article seems to be a combination of what we all have read. I even like that Queen Victoria also repurposed her dress throughout her life. I love that idea. If I ever get married, maybe I'll repurpose part of my gown into part of a quilt of a bedspread, or something like that. I'm sticking to white satin. :)

 

http://time.com/3698249/white-weddings/

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