Last Updated on 2022-10-19 by Seyifunmi Lydia
A bride’s leg is a sight to behold.
Why? Because it’s covered in flowers and jewels, of course!
To be honest, I’m still not sure why anyone would want to wear so much jewelry on their legs, but if you’re getting married and want to look like a princess on your special day, this is the look for you.
Right here on Buy and slay, you are privy to a litany of relevant information on what is a garter, why do brides wear garters, wedding garter tradition and so much more. Take out time to visit our catalog for more information on similar topics.
What do brides wear on their leg?
Brides have been wearing stockings and garters to their weddings for a few centuries now. It’s a classic look, and it’s still a popular choice today. But what do you wear on your legs?
It used to be that brides wore just the stockings and garters. But now, with the popularity of short wedding dresses, there are more options available for legwear. Brides can choose from a variety of different styles: tights, pantyhose, stockings (with suspenders), knee-high socks, or no hosiery at all.
Stockings come in a variety of materials including nylon, silk, polyester and cotton blends. The most popular choices for wedding legwear are nylon or silk because they feel silky against the skin and drape beautifully over your legs. Another benefit of using these materials is their ability to stay up on their own without the use of garters or pins – though many brides still choose to use both for extra security!
If you’re looking for something more functional than just looks then cotton blend tights might be right for you! These hose tend to be thicker than other types so will keep you warm on those chilly winter days – perfect for outdoor weddings where temperatures may dip during.
Whether the wedding garter tradition makes you laugh or cringe, it’s one that has stood the test of time. Even brides that don’t embrace the garter toss sometimes wear a garter as a sexy addition to the wedding night.
What Is the Wedding Garter?
The wedding garter is a piece of bridal lingerie worn under the wedding dress. During the reception, the groom will remove the garter from underneath the bride’s gown (with his hands or teeth) and toss it into the crowd.
The garter toss is very similar to the bouquet toss. The bachelor that catches the garter is believed to be married next. Today, couples are observing this tradition in new and modernized ways, which we’ll go into a bit later.
As you consider integrating the garter toss into your wedding, questions will likely arise: Which leg do you wear it on? How much will it cost? How far up the leg is it supposed to go? Where did the tradition begin, anyway? Read on to learn more about this storied tradition and for answers to every wedding garter question you can think of.
The History and Meaning of the Garter Toss
The wedding garter tradition originated in the Dark Ages. In “Wedding Customs Then and Now”, published in 1919, Carl Holliday paints the following picture of medieval England: “The [bridesmaids] start with the weary bride to the wedding chamber when suddenly the cry arises, ‘Get her garter’… If the woman has been thoughtful, she has fastened it loosely to the bottom of her dress so that it drags in plain view of the scrambling ruffians; if she has not been a wise virgin, she may find her clothes in rags after the struggle.”1
For a guest, having a tatter of the bride’s dress was considered good luck. Crowds of guests became so bawdy that they’d often follow the couple to their marital bed, ripping at their clothes as a form of “encouragement.” And so, the bride and groom started tossing the bouquet and the garters that held up the bride’s stockings as a way to appease the crowd.
Who buys the garter?
There is no set rule for who typically buys a bride’s wedding garter. If you want to buy one for a friend for her bridal shower, it can be a thoughtful gift. If you want to pick out your own bridal garter for your own wedding, that is perfectly acceptable, too.
How much does a garter cost?
A wedding garter can cost anywhere from $15 to $125 (for extremely ornate garters). The average price is around $20 to $35. The more ornate the style, the more expensive they tend to get.
What are the different styles of wedding garters?
Wedding garters typically come in a ruched, satin style or a lace band. They can come in any color. Brides can keep it simple with traditional white, use the garter for their something blue, or, really, choose any color of the rainbow. Some garters feature delicate bows, appliqués, beading, rhinestones, or crystals.
When should you order your garter?
You can order your wedding garter as early as you want. As with all things, if you want a custom garter design, you’ll need to check with the designer on their production time frame.
The biggest thing to remember is to try on your wedding garter before the morning of your wedding. Problems with fit are much easier to solve in advance. You don’t want to find out just before you walk down the aisle that something doesn’t fit or is uncomfortable.
What leg is the garter worn on?
There is no particular leg that you should wear your wedding garter. You can put the garter on whatever leg feels comfortable and natural to you. There is no good or bad luck involved with either leg.
Where do you place the garter on your leg?
It’s generally recommended that you wear your wedding garter just above your knee. This is usually the narrowest part of your thigh and your garter won’t rub your other leg when you walk or dance. Also, if you are wearing a mermaid or tighter fitting wedding dress, around your knee is where your dress will flare out, making this an ideal location for your garter. You can, of course, adjust it and put it higher if that feels more comfortable.
Do you have to wear your garter for the entire wedding?
You’ve got a few different options when it comes to wearing a garter on your wedding day. The first is to wear the garter all day, whether or not your partner will be removing it and throwing it into a crowd later in the evening. Look for a style that’s made of soft stretch lace that will lay flat against your skin instead of one made of gathered fabric. If you’ve got your eye on something more ornate, you can always keep it in your purse until a few moments before the throw. Once it’s time, head to the bathroom, slip it on, and head for the dance floor.
You can also decide to treat your garter as part of your wedding night lingerie. In that case, pick one that matches the set you’ve purchased for your first night as newlyweds and stash it away until you’ve gotten back to the suite.
Do you have to toss your garter?
Whether or not you toss your garter is entirely up to you. If you aren’t into the garter toss, don’t do it. If you (or your partner) would rather not toss your bridal garter at your reception, that is perfectly okay.
Garter Toss Alternatives
There are plenty of ways to get creative with the wedding garter tradition to make it your own, and you can modernize it in any way you want to.
One common reason for not wanting to actually toss the garter is that many brides want to keep it as a modern heirloom—if that’s the case for you, but you still want the fun moment of the groom peeling it off and then tossing it, consider getting a separate toss garter. A tossing garter is just an extra garter (often simpler than the main garter) that the groom can take off your leg and toss, while you get to keep your real garter as a keepsake forever.
Some brides may want to toss the garter but are uncomfortable with the idea of their groom fishing around for the garter beneath their dress as their parents and grandparents look on. If this is you, you can opt not to wear the garter and you can hand it to your groom just before the toss. Tailor the toss to suit you.
The wedding garter is a key component of a bride’s wedding day attire, hidden underneath her gown, waiting for the groom to retrieve it and toss to all the single men at the reception. The garter toss is an integral a part of the wedding day, yet many women partake in this old wedding tradition without really understanding its history and meaning. With so many varieties, styles and colors, you’ll want to make sure you select an appropriate one for your wedding. We’re here to tell you everything you need to know about the wedding garter so you can choose the right one for your big day.
Wedding Garter History and Meaning
Hundreds of years ago, there were many superstitions and beliefs surrounding the wedding day. One superstition was that owning a piece of the wedding dress would bring good luck, leading to wedding guests essentially attacking the bride to rip off a piece of her gown.
This led to brides wearing a specific article of clothing to be given out as the lucky piece: the garter. Another belief was that the garter was a symbol of the newlyweds consummating their marriage, so family and friends would take the garter as proof of consummation. Both of these ancient beliefs result in the garter being removed from the bride and given to someone who attended the wedding.
Photo Credit: Etsy
Today, the removal of the garter is reserved for the groom. There is typically a time set aside during the reception for the groom to do so in front of all of the witnesses, followed by the groom tossing the garter to all the unmarried bachelors in the crowd. Usually the bride will perform the bouquet toss first, then the groom will do the garter toss. This garter toss is very similar to the bouquet toss in that it is said that whoever catches the garter will be the next man to be married. The man who caught the garter will then place the garter on the woman who caught the bouquet.
How to Wear a Wedding Garter
The function of a garter is to hold up stockings on the bride’s legs. Therefore, there is no correct leg to wear it on. You may choose to wear your garter on either your left or your right leg based on your personal preference. Many brides choose to wear two garters: one to toss, and one to keep. If this is the case, you should wear both garters on the same leg with the tossing garter placed lower than the keeper garter. The most important thing is to make sure your partner knows which leg it’s on so that he can retrieve it easily when the time comes.
You want to make sure that you don’t wear your garter too high or too low, so generally the best spot for it is just above your knee. This way it won’t cut off circulation or rub against the other leg and it also won’t slip off. However, you can try it on in a few different locations to see what is most comfortable for you.
If you are planning to have photos taken of you with your dress lifted to reveal your garter, you’ll want to place it low enough so that you don’t accidentally flash the photographer when you’re taking the pictures. Keep in mind that when your partner goes to remove the garter, all of your guests will be watching so having it a bit lower so that you don’t show anything indecent is a good idea.
Songs for the Garter Toss
Traditionally, the garter toss takes place during the wedding reception. The groom removes the garter from the bride’s leg, sometimes with his hands or perhaps with his teeth, while a crowd watches. Following the bride’s bouquet toss, the groom tosses the garter to all of the eligible bachelors at the wedding. Depending on what kind of mood you want to set, there are many different songs that can be played. Here are a few popular songs that will get the party started during the garter toss.
Photo Credit: Bridal Guide
- Sir Mix A Lot – Baby Got Back
- Marvin Gaye – Let’s Get It On
- Destiny’s Child – Bootylicious
- The Mission Impossible Theme Song
- Blondie – One Way Or Another
Whether you choose to follow tradition or want to take a more playful route, the wedding garter can play as big or as little of a role in your wedding as you’d like. Do whatever is most comfortable for you – if that means only your husband gets to see the garter on you, or if you want him to retrieve it in front of a crowd, ultimately it’s your wedding day and you get to decide how to handle this tradition.