Something Borrowed, Something Blue

something blue
something blue

There are many fun traditions to participate in during weddings and even some that might have you wondering where it came from.  The tradition that brides should wear “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue” is one tradition that modern brides have continued to incorporate into their weddings for luck and is a great way to include memorable objects or people into the big day.  How did this tradition get started and what are some creative ways for you to continue this tradition?

History of the tradition.

This tradition began in 19th century England with an old English rhyme that describes what a bride should have on her wedding day, “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, a sixpence in your shoe.”  The meanings aren’t entirely clear, but there are some theories.  The “old” represents something from the past that you wish to hold onto or something from  your life before you say “I do” that is special. The “new” is symbolic of hope for the future or something that might represent you and your future spouse as a couple.  The “borrowed” means borrowed happiness and  is an object typically from a married friend or married relative and will bring good luck in the marriage and even fertility.  The blue stands for love, purity, and fidelity and wards off the evil eye.  The sixpence was meant to bring prosperity and was put into the bride’s shoe.

These items were typically brought together by female friends of the bride and usually worn by the bride herself.  However, tradition has evolved to include anything such as a getaway car or something other than what can be worn.

How can you be creative with this tradition for your wedding day?  Here are some ideas.


This one can be fun if you love vintage items.  An antique getaway car, a family heirloom, old polaroid pictures set on tables during the ceremony or even choosing old readings during your ceremony.  I wore a piece of jewelry from each of my grandmothers while my husband wore cufflinks from his grandfather.  This could be a borrowed item as well, but to us, it represented the “old” since our grandparents were an important part of our lives growing up and we wanted to have them represented.  One bride incorporated her mother’s tulle veil from her wedding into her new wedding dress. 

Key:   Think of someone, especially close to you or influential in your upbringing or single life to carry with you into your marriage. 


This is the easiest one!  This could be any gift given to the bride for the big day such as her wedding dress, the wedding ring, the wedding shoes, etc.  A growing trend is matching tattoos.  I’ve even seen a couple get tattoos  during their wedding ceremony.  Instead of a guestbook, use a pice of art for your home and have all your guests sign it.  This new decor for your home would be perfect as your “something new” as it represents everyone who loves and supports you in your marriage.

Key: Be intentional.  Pick something that you absolutely love and are excited about wearing or incorporating into your big day. 


This is a great time to add sentimental valuables or things that have brought joy to the married couples in your life. This could mean jewelry from a mother or grandmother, an antique car from a friend or relative as a getaway car.  I borrowed my grandmother’s rosary and wrapped it around my bouquet because she was instrumental in my upbringing and a fond memory I have of her is learning to pray the rosary.  Hers was especially beautiful and a gorgeous accessory to add to my bouquet.  Perhaps there are hobbies that have brought joy in marriages such as traveling or card games that you can draw inspiration from.  One couple used playing cards, table numbers for their families, both used games as family bonding time.

Key: This item can represent happiness, so think of something that has brought joy to another.


This is a fun way to add a pop of color to the wedding whites.   You can choose a blue garter to a piece of jewelry.  I saw a bride and groom who did custom embroidery to the suit and dress in blue thread.  One couple bought a blue leather bible to have as their family bible and used the bible as a ring pillow for the ring bearer to hold during the ceremony.

Key: Choose a fun accessory to add a pop of color. 

This tradition adds an element of fun to the day, but don’t stress about it because chances are you and just a few other people will be the only ones aware of your objects.  No need to impress, just have fun!


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