Bridal garters. It's the infamous piece of fabric which, depending on the bride, can be seen as almost as necessary as bridal jewellery. The action of a groom removing a part of the bridal lingerie set with his teeth then proceeding to toss it to eager guests can either be welcomed with laughter or uncomfortable cringes. Fan or not, this bridal tradition has held on strong. Like other unique components of the bridal outfit, there are many styles and colour variations this garment comes in, and questions on its origins and use often follow. This bridal garter 101 guide will be able to give you a clearer picture of the beginnings of the modern bridal garter, its styles and what to look for to suit you.
WHERE DID GARTERS COME FROM?
In the Middle Ages, a bride's wedding dress represented good luck, and the average equivalent of a honeymoon was a spectator sport with guests being physically present in the bedroom to witness the consummation of marriage with the garter used as proof of the full union. If having witnesses in the newlywed suite wasn't bad enough, guests would often tear a piece of the bridal gown to keep as a good luck charm. Both factors eventually resulted in the creation of something of the bride's outfit to be given away to guests; this method allowed for the couple's privacy and the bride being able to keep her dress undamaged.
THE PROCESS OF 'THE TOSS'
The garter toss is similar to the concept of a bride throwing her bouquet. In this instance the groom is responsible for the removal of his new spouse's garter using teeth or hands. Once removed the groom will toss it to the eagerly waiting wedding guests.
IS A GARTER A MUST FOR A WEDDING OUTFIT?
You do you. This is the era of couples opting to include or exclude activities regarding their big day based on the significance of a tradition in their eyes. A garter toss is no a 'must do' but can be done if it has special meaning for a couple.
HOW AND WHERE ARE GARTERS WORN?
There's no specified leg to that a bridal garter should be worn on, and the best way to find out is to simply try it on. Traditionally garters are used to hold stockings up; this means traditionally mid thigh was an ideal length.
As dress silhouettes become narrower, wear the garter just above the knee can assist in reducing bums and shadows on the wedding dress. This height will also help prevent the cutting off of blood circulation and make it easier to remove.
WHAT ARE THE STYLES?
Garters are most commonly constructed around an elastic band which is used to keep the garment on the bride's leg. Due to this, you will find most garters come ruched, satin styled or with lace covering the central elastic. Garter can come with miniture bows, beadwork, pearls, applique, rhinestones, crystals, and/or glitter. Just bear in mind the weight of the garter will effect how well it stays on the leg!
WHAT ARE THE COLOURS?
Garters come in all shades of colours! The most common and classic colour for garters is still somewhere on the white and ivory spectrum. If a bride is looking to add an element of something blue to their day, this is one way to do it. Depending on the sheerness of your skirts colour garters may peak through under intense lighting (e.g sunlight).
WHAT IS THE COST OF A GARTER?
The price of a garter varies depending on the material and how elaborate it is. The average price range of garters is around AU$35 - AU$70.See the full range of garter via the Eternal Bridal online store here