The wedding tradition of “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue” has been around for hundreds of years. The tradition of carrying or wearing one of each item is said to bring luck and fortune to the newly married couple. Have you ever stopped to think what the saying really means? What is its origin and what does each item represent?

Historically, it can be dated back to the Victoria times and states-”Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue and a silver sixpence in your shoe.”

Something old...

A bride may wear or carry something old to represent her continued ties to her family and her old life. Many brides wear a piece of family jewelry as their old item. Some brides wear the wedding dress worn by their mother or grandmother. In many cases, something old may also be something borrowed. Those old things used to be gold rings or diamond rings on account of a fact that tungsten rings and platinum rings are well received nowadays.

                            tungsten rings

Something new...

Wearing something new is supposed to represent success and hope in the bride’s new life and in her marriage. If the bride purchased her wedding dress new, it may represent her new item, but any item that is new may be used. Something new is usually the easiest category to fill.

Something borrowed...

The borrowed item should be something borrowed from a friend that is happily married. It is suggested that their happiness will rub off on you and bring lasting happiness to your marriage. Some brides borrow an item of clothing, a piece of jewelry, a handkerchief or perhaps a beaded purse.

Something blue...

Wearing something blue dates back to biblical times when a blue wedding dress was worn to represent purity, fidelity and love. Over a long period of time, this has been changed from wearing a blue dress to wearing just a blue band around the bottom of the bride’s wedding dress to modern times where it is commonplace for the bride to wear a blue garter.

Some brides are more traditional than others and may take a great deal of care in selecting one item for each category. It may be traditional for the women in their families to wear the same piece of jewelry. Other brides aren’t bound by such tradition but still may choose to carry out the custom at someone else ’s request. If they don’t want to carry numerous items, they may simply carry two handkerchiefs in a small beaded bag--they may choose to buy a new, white handkerchief and borrow a blue one from a family member. That would provide them with something new--the white handkerchief, as well as something that is old, borrowed and blue--the blue handkerchief. The handkerchief just may come in handy during the wedding for drying their joyful tears.


This article was written by:

Louis Moore

Jewelry Marketing Expert and Analyst

Guest Editor of several jewelry magazines

Over 10 years of marketing experience in the jewelry market

Enjoys long-distance jogging and classical music