Elaborate, traditional and meaningful – Moroccan weddings require much planning.
- The suitor must offer the bride a dowry filled with household items and furniture.
- Courtship lasts six to 24 months before a date is set.
- Before the wedding, a mattress and blankets are taken to the bridal chapel for the couple to consummate the marriage after the vows.
- One day before the wedding, the bride has a Hamman (milk bath) by her negaffa (female attendants). The attendants beautify and purify her for her wedding.
- The group attends a Beberiska ceremony, (a henna party, believed to ward off evil spirits and increase fertility), where hands and feet are painted.
- Henna designs for the bride-to-be are the most intricate. The name of her future groom is written into the designs.
- The bride is dressed in kaftan (usually white) and decorated with jewellery. Her eye area is darkened with thick black liner.
- The bride changes her outfit as many as 14 times throughout the wedding day.
- The groom wears a tunic and pants called jabadoor and later may change into a suit.
- The marriage contract is usually signed by father-of-the-bride on her behalf.
- The bride is carried to the wedding on an amaria by four men (elegant roofed platform supported by long poles and held by amaria bearers).
- The amaria ride shows the joy of the bride – flying to meet her new life as a wife.
- Food is plentiful, (kabobs, Moroccan meat dishes, roasted vegetables, homemade breads and desserts, couscous, hummus and much more), as there can be many unexpected guests.
- Music is a mix of flamenco sounds, liturgical music, North African secular songs or modern music.
- Entertainment consists of belly dancers, magicians, dancers and singers.
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