We have compared the differences and similarities between wedding traditions and ceremonies in Sweden and Japan. We have studied the history behind the two cultures wedding traditions and ceremonies and compared them to each other and we have also looked at the dress codes what wedding couples wear today and the history behind the clothes.
The Swedish and Japanese wedding ceremonies are very different if you look at the more traditional customs. Much of this may be due to the very different religions represented in these two countries. The traditional wedding in Japan is a Shinto wedding and traditionally in Sweden it has been a Christian ceremony for hundreds of years. A Shinto and a Christian wedding ceremony are very different when it comes to most things and have very few similarities. In the modern wedding ceremony it appears that the wedding in the two countries are more similar than different.
There are traditions when it comes to most things related to the a Swedish wedding. Some traditions date back to ancient times and others can be found already in the 1400. Rings, guests, gifts, preparation, clothing, etc. all have a history and tradition. Many of the traditions that existed at the ceremony changed in the late 1700s and early 1800s. The tradition has developed and been refined into the traditions that we find at wedding ceremonies today. Wedding ceremonies are usually performed at church a tradition that dates back hundreds of years. The white wedding dress that most brides wears today became popular to in Sweden around the 1800. Men usually wears a tuxedo or a dark suit.
Majority of Japanese manners emerged in the late 1800s and early 1900s and doesn’t have the same long history as many Swedish traditions. Shinto ceremony is the traditional way to get married in Japan, but after World War II it has become more common to have a wedding ceremony that are influenced by the Christian religion and more western styled weddings. In a Shinto wedding the bride and many times the groom wears a traditional wedding kimono, in the modern and more popular wedding the bride wears a white wedding dress and the man a suit. Japan has also contributed with innovative traditions to the rest of the world, for example “packet-wedding” and to celebrate weddings abroad. These innovative wedding traditions are a way to save money for the wedding couple and also to save them some time. To travel abroad to get married is something that some couples in Sweden chose to do as well, but it is not as common as it is in Japan.
To find that the Swedish traditions and ceremony at a wedding has a longer history then the Japanese was something that came as a surprise to us and also the fact that we a relatively similar when it comes to the modern wedding ceremony. Considering that the traditional Shinto wedding no longer are as popular as before Japanese and Swedish wedding ceremonies are nowadays more similar then ever before.
By comparing these two traditions we found that we didn’t just found out about the Japanese culture but we found out more about the culture we live in. We were able to take a step back and lock at our own traditions and ceremonies with new eyes and had the privilege to take a in depth look at a fascinating culture that we find that Japans culture, history and traditions.