Oh, thank you all so much! :kiss :kiss :kiss
I have a friend at work who is getting married in a month, and I saw her looking on the internet for something the other night, but she said that they were all too expensive (not to mention, most of the ones I've seen are tacky as all get out), and I really want to make her one to use in her wedding. They don't have a lot of money, and I want to make her one that is nice enough to hang up later if she wants, but also incorporate some elements into it that are symbolic.
I'm going to check out those sites right now!! What I was looking for was one that had a sort of natural wood handle and natural bristles, as opposed to the type of broom pictured below.
3rdShift, you're not alone! My husband had never heard of it, either.
Jumping the broom is a ceremony that is frequently incorporated into weddings that give a nod to African-American history. The broom symbolizes purification or a new beginning for the couple (as in, the broom symbolically sweeps away their past lives before they were together, or past mistakes, or lonliness, or whatever). Sometimes the couple will use the broom to sweep a circle around the minister or designated "other" who reads to/tells the guests about the ceremony and what it means to the couple and its historical meaning. Then the broom is placed on the floor and the couple literally jumps over it to the other side to signify the beginning of their life together.
This is an excerpt from a web site:
Shortly after the introduction of slavery to the country, the right to legal marriage was taken away from the enslaved. Slaveholders considered the Africans property, and as property, they had no rights in the eyes of the law. The owners also feared that legal marriage and family bonds had the potential to lead to organization and revolt. Marriage rituals were important events to the Africans who came from numerous richly ceremonial cultures. When faced with the loss of the right to marry, many, ingrained with the significance of the marriage since childhood, created new rituals with what was on hand. Taking vows in the presence of a witness and then leaping over the handle of a broom became the common practice to create a recognized union. Incorporating "jumping the broom" into modern weddings is just one way African Americans today celebrate their cultural heritage.
I was thinking of incorporating cowrie shells (for fertility) into the decorations; anyone know of anything else (herbs, colors, types of flowers, etc.) that I could use? I want to make it very special.
Thank you again and again and again! I'm going to check out those sites now. I think we have a Pagan/Wiccan store somewhere in the FQ. If I can't find anything affordable on the internet, I'll go there and see if they can help me.