Something old, something new
Something borrowed, something blue
And a silver sixpence in your shoe
As I like to do often on our blog, I wanted to share the history of the sixpence in your shoe part of this British age-old rhyme and tradition for brides. In 1551, the British Government issued the first sixpence, worth six pennies, and used the coin until 1967. In the Middle Ages, people were obsessed with myth and superstition. Evil spirits were said to run amuck on wedding days. To ward off the mischievous demons, good luck charms were given to the bride and groom. The silver sixpence started in the 1600’s when Lords of Manors gave their brides a piece of silver as part of the wedding gift. The silver coin was then included in the bride’s dowry given to the groom. The traditions of dowries died out [Phew!], but the tradition of giving a coin remained.
This good luck trinket ensures “financial wealth and wealth of happiness and joy.” (www.sixpenceco.com)
What I love is the new family tradition that can start with the sixpence. Begin the tradition with your wedding sixpence and continue to remember by sharing it with your children on Christmas or on their wedding days. (The Christmas tradition involves hiding the sixpence in Christmas Pudding for one lucky child to find each year.) Some brides like to wear a sixpence with special meaning. A 1910 coin for a 2010 wedding, maybe?
So, why the shoe? Practical reason. A wedding gown is pocketless! However practical, it was a bit uncomfortable on my wedding day to walk down the aisle much less dance with the coin in my shoe. Not to worry! Jozelle Crabtree, a local Nashville artist, handstitches with the greatest of detail these fabulous sixpence pouches that you can pin on your gown or bouquet for sale at Wedding 101. This is just one of the several exquisite and cute little pouches, sixpence included, you must come see!
We may not believe in evil spirits but a little good luck never hurts … just in case!!!