Is there a carnival in Malatya Turkey

Wedding in Turkish

No wedding is easy to organize - at best, it should fulfill the wishes of the bride and groom and also meet the demands of being the most beautiful day of their lives. At a wedding based on the Turkish model, there are even more traditions and more guests. (And sometimes the claim to be the parents' best day) Here we explain some of the traditions using a fictional couple: Let's call them Stefan and Leyla, a young couple from Cologne who are deeply in love.

Stefan was born and raised in Cologne - “ne Cologne young” through and through. Leyla’s parents moved from Selcuk, a dreamy village near Izmir to Cologne almost 40 years ago and have always lived between German and Turkish culture in the multicultural district of Veedel Nippes. Leyla, the Cologne girl with Turkish roots, captured Stefan's heart three years ago. At carnival dressed as a hot nurse. Now the two want to get married soon. Two weeks ago, Stefan asked his Leyla: “Benimle bir yastıkta kocarmısın?” (“Do you want to grow old with me on a pillow?”) His boys taught him that. Leyla chuckled with happiness as she screamed "Evet" and burst into tears with joy.


Well, a few days after the application, she sits across from him, smiles mischievously and admonishes him:

"If we want to get married in the summer of next year, then we really have to step on the gas now, there is still so much to do!" Stefan doesn't (yet) know why, but the moment Leyla fishes her notepad out of her pocket, he is walking a little shiver down his spine. "I once wrote down all the to-dos up to our wedding," she says and eagerly begins to leaf through her notes.

What was he getting into? Leyla starts without a point or a comma and now it's not just about your wishes, but also about those of her entire clan ...

Kız isteme ("Asking for a girl")

Even if the future groom has already asked for the bride's hand and she has given her consent, there is a custom that can hardly be skipped: The groom's parents and various other relatives gather with the bride's family and the family eldest (usually the father of the bride and groom) Bridegroom) asks for the daughter's hand in the name of Allah and the Prophet Mohammed. It gets funny when the bride serves her future partner a Turkish mocha, which she serves "sweetened" with salt. If the groom doesn't complain and drinks the mocha without showing its disgusting taste, this is considered the greatest token of love. (Şeyda explains what this visit looks like in the article "Salt in Mocha".)

Söz kesme - The promise

As soon as the “Kız isteme” ceremony is over, a small family celebration is held where the engagement rings are exchanged. This is called "Söz kesme", in German "The promise". The rings are linked with a red ribbon. After they have been put on the respective fingers, a head of the family cuts the red ribbon. Thus the engagement is “officially” recognized by the family and the two are bound “forever”.

The engagement

Now the engagement party follows. Usually a hall is rented in which people dance, eat and play music. Here the future bride usually wears a pompous colored dress. It can be red, yellow, pink, blue or even motley, just not white. And black is not seen that much either, as it could indicate sadness and displeasure.

The henna night

If the date of the wedding approaches, the henna night must be organized. Usually this takes place in the house of the future bride. Female family members and friends are invited to eat, dance and sing together. For this event there is a traditional costume for the bride, which is tailored from velvet and embroidered plant motifs. The dress is called "bindallı" (thousand plant branches). At this ceremony, the bride receives a red headscarf with sequins to hide her tears because she is leaving her parents' home. People dance and sing until the bride starts crying. So that the future bride actually cries, she is placed on a chair and all the other guests circle her and sing sentimental songs. Her tears should prove that she is sad to leave home. Rumor has it that most brides are more likely to be tears of joy.

The actual henna application ceremony does not begin until the groom arrives late in the evening. The lights are switched off, candles are lit, a romantic song sounds, and the couple are allowed to take a seat in the middle of the room, surrounded by guests. Now comes the important moment: The henna is brought on a silver platter surrounded by candles. Henna is applied to the palms of the bride by an elderly respectful person. In order for the bride to have the palm of her hand free for painting, the mother-in-law (or another family member of the groom) puts a piece of gold in the bride's hand. In some regions of Turkey, the groom is also given henna in the palms of his hands. After about two hours, the henna is washed off. According to belief, henna is a plant from paradise and is said to bring happiness to the couple.

Just before the wedding

A few days or hours before the wedding ceremony, the civil and / or Islamic wedding takes place. The Islamic wedding is about saying “I do” before Allah in a mosque in the presence of an imam. The Islamic wedding has no official function, but has great symbolic meaning for Muslim families.

Bridal styling

The big day is here and very early in the morning the bride and her closest relatives and friends are chauffeured to the hairdresser. Dance music is already playing there, some dance-mad ladies try out their moves for the wedding, while the bride is dressed up from head to toe for the wedding (and the wedding night). It starts with the manicure and ends with the pompous bridal hairstyle, which contains at least two bottles of styling spray.

The pickup

The bride is then brought home by the hairdresser to put on her wedding dress and make the final preparations for the celebration. It is the last few hours in her parents' house. Often tears are shed when the parents officially say goodbye. Meanwhile (and so that the groom is not bored), musicians gather on their doorstep with drums and trumpets and halay dances to finally accompany the couple to the wedding car.

The "yes" at the wedding party

Even if the couple has already given the “yes” in front of the registry office, the celebration starts in front of the “wedding altar” in the wedding hall. The entire wedding is now repeated again. The louder the bride and / or groom shout their "yes", the stronger this is considered to be a proof of love. After the groom is allowed to kiss the bride (usually this happens very shyly on the cheeks and not on the mouth), one of the newly weds steps on the foot of the other. It is said that if you step on your partner's foot faster, you will wear your pants in the marriage. Often it is the brides who, when called from the audience, use their full weight to ensure that the groom does not walk strangely for the rest of the evening, not just because of tight new shoes.

The gold appendage

The gifts to the bride and groom must glitter and flutter. You have to catch the eye. Gold and money are primarily traditional gifts that the young couple receive. This should enable them financially to start a life together. There is still the ritual today that the bride and groom go to the center of the room and the guests stand in line to hang their money or gold on the bride and groom. And at some point they both stand there like two glittering Christmas trees. Sometimes the gift is even called out over the microphone, à la: “The groom's cousin on the father's side from Istanbul is giving the couple 200 euros”. Perhaps that's why at some point they started giving the money and gold in envelopes.

The bridal shoe

The names of the single friends are written on the soles of the bridal shoes with a pen. The lady whose name is blurred at the end of the evening is the next lucky one.

Dance till you drop

The wonderful thing about Turkish weddings is the choice of music. Often you start quite traditionally with music from the couple's regions, it continues with Turkish pop music and Halay dances and then the climax comes with hard techno and house sounds. In fact, almost everyone dances to almost every type of music, and the dance floor is always full.

"So, what do you think we can do all of this?" Leyla smiles at her Stefan. “Can we manage all of this? Or do we prefer to plan a small celebration and go to the Maldives with the money we have saved? ”Asks Leyla.

Stefan has thought it over: “Leyla, that sounds tempting but let's dare to host a big Turkish party. I only have one condition: 'Bläck Föös' and 'Die Höhner' (Carnival songs, A.d.R.) are also on the playlist! "

Text: Esra Yigit and Nur Şeyda Kapsiz

Photos: Füsün Cibir