A Victorian engagement party doesn’t have to be stuffy. These are 5 unusual Victorian wedding traditions that you might enjoy even if you wouldn’t want them around at your Victorian wedding.
Coins: Everyone knows about something old, new, borrowed, and blue but the more unusual Victorian wedding tradition of a sixpence in your shoe gets less attention. Maybe it was never that comfortable. You can still set out some tall lace up boots at your Victorian engagement party for guests to drop in a coin. Give the money to charity and earn some extra good luck for your Victorian wedding.
Victorian Hats: Victorian era hats were for the birds literally. You may pray no one shows up at your Victorian wedding with a whole dead bird on their hat, but it could be fun to make this unusual Victorian tradition part of the dress code for your Victorian engagement party. People can get creative and stay humane with origami, stuffed animals, or sports mascots.
Weird Victorian Posters: The Victorian era has a reputation for prudery, but that repression often covered up some very strange conduct. Madame Talbot’s Victorian Lowbrow Posters has a huge selection of prints with sideshow performers, medical quacks, and other oddities to add some fun to your engagement party, but they’re probably too weird for any Victorian wedding tradition.
Horses and Carriages: Carriages drawn by white or grey horses were another Victorian wedding tradition. I agree with the ASPCA position on this one. They don’t seek to prohibit carriages for hire, but they warn about violations of humane conditions by some stables. You can make a centerpiece procession for your buffet table that’s worthy of an empress with little expense and no such worries. These pretty favor boxes look like gold coaches with white horses and can be embellished with flowers, ribbon, and gold foil covered chocolates. ($14.95 for 12 boxes)
Victoria Wines: Serve Victoria wines at your Victorian engagement party. This wine state of Australia has been producing a wide diversity of quality wines since the mid 19th century, but they would have been an unusual Victorian wedding tradition back then. Today, they’re easily available. Try toasting with a Two Hands Max’s Garden Shiraz 2006. This bold ruby wine has notes of dark cherry and minerals, and gets 90 points or more from The Wine Advocate and Wine Spectator ($56). You can also get great bargains on Rieslings for your Victorian engagement party or Victorian wedding.