Love and Luck: The Qualms of Superstitions

Worried about rain on your wedding day? Find out how these couples averted bad luck.

Photos by Michael Will Photography


Most people have heard that it’s bad luck to see the bride before the ceremony, or they’ve heard the rhyme “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.” But there are other superstitions brides and grooms may pay heed to when planning their big day, whether for fun or the promise of good fortune.

Diana Battaglia and Jackson Boyd were worried about their outdoor wedding reception being ruined by a rainy Pittsburgh day, so when Diana saw an old wives’ tale to ward off rain on Instagram, she knew they had to it.

The Southern tradition states that if the couple buries a bottle of bourbon upside down at the ceremony/reception site exactly 30 days before their wedding, there will be no rain on the wedding day. The couple held their reception at Redfin Blues on Washington’s Landing and knew the owner of the restaurant, who allowed them to bury the bourbon nearby the restaurant.

“I remember it was 30 days before the wedding and both of us had been working all day,” says Diana. “We weren’t going to do it, and I kept freaking out. I was like, ‘Oh my God if we don’t do it it’s gonna pour down rain.’”

On their wedding day, Diana says it was chilly with a light drizzle before the reception, but nothing was wet and there was no rain during the reception. At the reception, her photographer and the owner of Redfin Blues wanted her to dig up the bottle for some photos.

“I’m like, ‘No way. I’m in a white dress. I’m not digging that up,’” Diana says with a laugh. “Those actually ended up being my favorite photos.”

Diana says they still have the bourbon, its label worn off, and keep in on their bar in their house.

“I look at it and think of the wedding,” she says. “Maybe we’ll drink it on the year anniversary.”

Photo by Kristi Telnov Photography

Other couples ignored superstitions completely, choosing to have a first look session, even though the age-old tale is “it’s bad luck to see the bride before the wedding,” a superstition that dates back to arranged marriages.

Courtney Wertz and William Miller had a first look session on their wedding day because of the “logistics of the day,” Courtney says. They had their ceremony at 4 p.m. and did not want to disrupt the day by having photos, cocktail hour and reception later.

“I don’t think we lost anything; we almost got to have two [first looks] in a way,” she says. “It’s still special to walk into a church and see your husband at the altar. It’s still emotional; it’s just a different emotion.”

Photos by Leslie Swan Photography

Abby Mathieu had two first looks, one with her father and one with her husband, Mike Swalga. Abby says she wanted to have a first look with her dad because she wanted to share a special, private moment with him so she could give him a gift: a wallet engraved with a personal message.

Abby and Mike chose to do a first look after a lot of thought, input from their photographer and her experience as a local wedding planner with her own company, Cheers To You.

“I just started thinking about it, and I was like, ‘Why should the first time he sees me have to be when it’s the first time everyone else is seeing me too?’” she says. “I kind of selfishly wanted that [special moment] just for myself.”

She says the first look was laid back and gave them a chance to breathe before the hectic day continued — they took some photos and even had a beer. Their first look brought “perspective to the day,” and Abby says she didn’t miss out on the reaction or the feeling of the first look on the aisle. “I really got the best of both worlds.

“I’m not a superstitious person, and to me, it wasn’t a big deal,” she says. “I was really stressed out [about the day], after our first look all of my stress disappeared.”

Categories: Beyond the Cookie Table, Weddings