In France a civil ceremony will take place at the Mairie (Town Hall) of the town in which you are staying and will be performed by the Mayor or his legally authorised replacement. Just be careful not to fill up on hors d'oeuvres like pâté, mini vegetable tarts, and French cheeses during le vin d'honneur—a hard charge considering you probably won't sit down for a dinner of things like beef bourguignon, potatoes au gratin, and coq au vin before 9 p.m. France has a rigorous separation between the church (predominantly Catholic) and state. I post exclusive mini lessons, tips, pictures and more daily on my Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest pages – so join me there! Tweet. Before the wedding meal, there will be sort of un apéritif, with drinks (wine and Champagne and juices) and finger food. They are too many to list. Fiançailles translates to "engagement," and it's a big deal in French culture. We realize have however flower boys and girls: les enfants dhonneur, une demoiselle dhonneur, un … The mayor, or sometimes someone from his/her staff, will marry the bride and groom and it can be moving – or just another administrative chore – it all depends on the officer…. The Coupe de Mariage is an engraved, two-handled shallow silver cup passed down as a family heirloom that the newlyweds may use to toast each other for the first time. It’s not just slang. Procedure for marriage in France. We do have however flower boys and girls: les enfants d’honneur, une demoiselle d’honneur, un garçon d’honneur. So it is very much expected from a guest to partake financially – either with a nice gift, or with a generous check which may help pay for the wedding, or for a honeymoon – le voyage de noce, la lune de miel. Among the traditions are “les dragées“. If the parents are paying for the wedding, they may divide the cost per guest, and pay for the guests of each family. At a French wedding, you won’t see the same kind of tiered wedding cake that you might come across in the US. The number of attendees typically falls in the 200 to 300 range, and they're there to party. Is theer anything I should know in terms of ettiquette, etc? I’m a bit of an expert in French weddings (in my head I’m saying that in a Peppa Pig voice). This dress is often princess-like, and may have une traine, the bride may wear un voile – a veil, and of course the bride will hold un bouquet. The cool-girl aesthetic you are searching for can be achieved with these très chic French-inspired wedding details. "The first thing French couples absolutely want to have is French food and French wine," says WEW. Yummmmmm !!! Much like in America, after the ask, French couples plan an engagement party for the families, close friends, and future witnesses. "Ours was in the desert of Atacama in Chile." Dinner is served late, and the dancing usually starts around midnight and can go as late as 7 a.m. the following morning! My boyfriend and I are going to a French wedding next week and while I'm wearing a dress similar to one I'd wear at a wedding here in Ireland my boyfriend doesn't know what to wear. All was done in good spirits, and very funny, and we all laughed a lot. So you need to bring a little cash with you. Wedding season is upon us so you may be clutching your faire-part ready to head off to your first French wedding. I’ve been invited to a French wedding in the middle of august and I realised I know nothing about French wedding etiquette. The day after, very early in the morning, the villagers had to hunt for for the newlyweds to give them the chamber pot (this was called “The running after newlyweds”). This is a lovely gesture that can be easily adopted and will surely elicit a collective "aww" from the audience. The French everybody speaks in France today is NOT the overly enunciated, extremely formal French usually taught to foreigners. Photo by Charline Jay Photographie; Courtesy of Vanessa Monnet, The livret de famille booklet is a civil registry that a mayor issues to a couple upon their betrothal. In French, the reception or "wedding meal" is called repas de noces, and as we've hinted throughout, it's a very good time. However if you do wish to have your ceremony translated into English I would advise speaking with the Mayor to make the necessary arrangements. Some family members and friends may read a prayer, or sing a song. (For WEW weddings, that's meant lots of local wine trucks—especially in the South of France). It's still a common wedding gift, as the couple can engrave it with their wedding date and, in the future, other important dates, like the birth of a child, but modern brides and grooms are less likely to toast with it at the wedding. 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