Although Norway is very modern in many ways, it has kept many of its traditions. There are some similarities between the Scandinavian countries, but they also have their traditions. Read through to see what you can learn about Norwegian weddings, whether you are attending a Norwegian wedding, trying to connect with the Norwegian heritage, or just curious about Scandinavian traditions.

Bunad is a well-known traditional Norwegian costume that many Norwegians own and wear on special occasions. Each bunad tells the story of Norway’s history uniquely and colourfully, and it plays an essential role in connecting Norwegians to their heritage. You can check out Nelly for any traditional Norwegian attire for ceremonies. 

What Is a Bunad

The term bunad is most commonly used to refer to traditional Norwegian clothing, which includes various regional styles. Bunds are brightly coloured woollen garments with embroidery, buckles, shawls, scarves, and classic, handcrafted Norwegian jewellery known as solje.  

The History of Bunad

The Norwegians are incredibly proud of their traditional clothing, known as ‘Bunad.’ This is a traditional folk costume with origins in the 19th century national romanticism period, which saw a surge in interest in traditional folk costumes. The Bunad is a costly gown comparable to a galla gown for women and a tuxedo for men. It is traditionally given to girls at their ‘konfirmasjon’ (around the age of 15) and boys when they have outgrown it.

The bunad can appear differently in different counties, or ‘fylker,’ and even in various cities and regions, or ‘bygder.’ So, just by looking at the bunad, you can see where your ancestors came from or where you currently live. As teenagers, many Norwegians receive their first bunad, which is often a family heirloom. A new bunad can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000, which is why the outfit is designed to be easily altered for a lifetime of use. Men have begun to wear bunads again in recent years, even though women are more likely to do so.

Norwegians are incredibly proud of their national attire, which has sparked a heated debate about bunad traditions. However, the most widely accepted rule is that the bunad worn by people should represent a important region. This unwritten rule usually entails donning the bunad of the region from which you or your ancestors originated.

Bride and groom outfits

The bride is typically dressed in a long white gown, while the groom is dressed in a black tuxedo or suit. Of course, some brides and grooms continue to wear their bunads. Weddings can take place in a church or at a city hall in a civil ceremony.

Because the state and the church are still one in Norway, marriage in a church also counts as a civil wedding. As a result, our wedding will only take place in the church of Nttery. Flowers and other decorations are customarily placed in the church. The wedding couple themselves usually does this tradition.

Guests will wear either their Bunads or a dress/suit to the ceremony. These two are the most commonly worn for any wedding ceremony in Norway. If, as a non-indigene and you aren’t yet comfortable wearing bunad yet. A dress or a suit will do, and you won’t feel out of place. But as time goes on, you can always try the traditional wear.

Despite these commonalities, there isn’t a single official bunad style—and that’s on purpose. Bunads are meant to be one-of-a-kind representations of the regions from which they originate. Although bunads may appear to be the same in different parts of the world, each one is designed to reflect the traditions and designs of the community it represents.