June 29, 2010

Wedding Ceremony: Jumping The Broom

Jumping the broom is a symbol of a crossing over a threshold into new territory & a new life together. This African-American wedding tradition originated during the years of slavery. During this time, slaves were actually considered as property and were not legally allowed to marry. Since the slaves marriages were to recognized as legal, jumping the broom symbolized a commitment or marriage in the slave community.


Once a couple took their marital vows in the midst of a group of slaves, they took a leap over their broom & were officially considered married. Today brides incorporate "jumping the broom" into their ceremony as a way to honor their ancestors. The broom is a symbol of cleanliness, family & fertility. The broom handle represents God, the straw of the broom represents family, and the decorative ribbon represents the tie the holds the couple together. Commonly couples who are jumping the broom, will also select a "broom bearer" as a part of the bridal party, who will carry the ceremonial broom down the aisle.

Many floral designers are able to decorate your custom ceremonial broom to coordinate with your wedding ceremony. If you are a bride that wants to DIY your ceremonial broom, Hobby Lobby is a great place to purchase the brooms, ribbon & artificial floral stems {if you are not incorporating live florals}. A decorated broom simply consist of ribbon in the wedding color palette & florals. More brides are moving toward a simple household broom so that they are able to use it in the couples new home.

Image Source: Elton Anderson

For different versions of a "Jumping the Broom" ceremony click here!

"Jumping the broom" is a great way of incorporating a part of your heritage into your wedding to make it unique.

1 comment:

Maria of Ashley's Bride Guide said...

Wonderful information! I really like the ideas for decorating the broom with the couple's style in mind.