7 “Something Borrowed” Wedding Ideas

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Bride and bridesmaids in pink dresses holding bouquets

Note: while we will refer to “the bride” here, as the bride was traditionally the subject of this little adage, there’s absolutely no reason that a groom couldn’t follow the same good-luck guidelines. Feel free to interchange “groom” wherever it make sense for you! 

You’ve probably heard of the old British wedding tradition where a bride is supposed to wear “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, and a silver sixpence in her shoe,” on her wedding day, right? But if you’re like us, you might be a little clueless as to what this actually means. Ostensibly good luck charms, each of the five tokens carry a special significance for a bride on her new journey, but the importance of each is often lost in translation. So what do they each mean?

Something old represents continuity; something new symbolizes optimism for your future; something borrowed is for borrowed happiness; something blue stands for purity, loyalty, and fidelity; and the sixpence is a good luck wish for prosperity. Of all five meanings, the sentimental feeling behind “something borrowed” really pulls on our heart strings. We love nothing more than the idea of borrowing something from a married couple you admire as the guiding force for your own union, so we’ve decided to share some of our favorite “something borrowed” wedding ideas. Get ready to seriously feel your heart flutter.

Bride sitting on a couch looking down as she puts on a shoe

Photo Credit || Lane Photography

The most popular way to incorporate a “something borrowed” into your wedding is through attire. It might be wearing the dress, necklace, or veil that your mother or grandmother wore, or tucking the pocket square of a favorite grandfather into your suit. You could take lace from an aunt’s dress to create a fresh and modern new accessory. Nothing is more touching to a beloved friend or family member than reusing a part of their special day in your very own wedding.

bride with braided updo putting on earrings in front of a mirror

Photo Credit || © Dan Stewart Photography

Do you remember those days sitting down at your grandmother’s table? The holiday dinners where she pulled out her favorite china set? Maybe even the dishes she received as a wedding gift? Those sweet memories can easily be included in your wedding day as well by using your family’s vintage dishes in your wedding decor. Use them at a dessert station or in your tablescape, and you’ll have a beautiful and memorable “something borrowed” incorporated into this once-in-a-lifetime event.

wedding reception with a round table set with gold linens and flowers

Photo Credit || Amelia and Dan

Wrap a piece of lace from a female relative’s dress or veil, or the handkerchief of a favorite male relative, around your bouquet. Not only is it a sweet addition to the work of your wedding florist, but including your family in a special way will be so meaningful to them.

Another fun way to play with wedding tradition is to borrow the wedding bands of a couple who’s love really inspires you. Tie the rings to your bouquet, or wear them as on silk ribbon around your neck, and you have quite literally borrowed the symbol of their love.

bridal bouquet of white roses and baby's breath wrapped with white ribbon and a blue rosary

Photo Credit || Michele Ashley

woman's hands holding a bouquet wrapped with ribbon, pearl rosary and miniature photographs

Photo Credit || Splendored Photography of San Antonio

Get creative. “Something borrowed” doesn’t always have to be something the bride wears, or even a tangible object. We adore the idea of “borrowing” the first dance song of a couple you admire. Not only is it a fabulous way for you to show them how much their marriage has inspired you, but it’s a great way to remind the lovebirds of their very own wedding day. We foresee no dry eyes in the house.

bride and groom dancing on an outdoor dance floor

Photo Credit || onelove photography

Borrowing jewelry from a friend or family member is a traditional “something borrowed.” Again, feel free to put a twist on the idea: gather brooches from the women who continually inspire you and use them to create a one-of-a-kind brooch wedding bouquet. As you walk down the aisle, you can look down at the sparkling bouquet in your hands and know that the amazing women in your life are right there with you.

One of our absolute favorite “something borrowed” wedding ideas? Take a piece of an heirloom tablecloth, a vintage dress, or any meaningful fabric and have it sewn into the lining of your wedding dress or suit.


A lady's wrist with a flower corsage and antique photograph locket

Photo Credit || Kevin Maurice Photography

Who said that this token tradition is only for the bride? It’s more than lovely to include the groom in on the fun as well. Borrow a pair of heirloom cufflinks or the tie of a close friend or family member—either way, we encourage grooms to carry or incorporate their own sentimental items into the wedding day as well.

groom's accessories of brown leather shoes, floral bow tie, pink pocket square and rose boutonniere

Photo Credit || Inspired Eye Photography

Whatever you end up choosing for your “something borrowed,” make the most of the tradition by ensuring that your choice is really special and meaningful to you, your story, and your journey. Borrowed love is an incredible thing to have by your side on this extraordinary day!

Featured Photo Credit || Riverland Studios


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