Our Betrothal Gift Ceremony aka Guo Da Li

Hello friends/readers,

Long time no see! :)
Today I am going to share about our Betrothal Gift Ceremony aka 过大礼 (Guo Da Li) :)

If you follow us on Instagram @Bigtreeandkoala , you would have came across a video we posted 2 weeks before our wedding day (30th April 16),
that's a video highlight of our Guo Da Li.
Guo da li is like a gift exchange ceremony between the bride's and groom's family..

We will be sharing where to buy the Guo Da Li items and the Guo Da Li cake (
If you find this blog post useful.
Do feel free to share this blog post with your friends/relatives who are getting married!

Before our Guo Da Li ceremony, my husband and his parents came over to my place to discuss about the guo da li ceremony.. things to bring over, etc.. :)

As usual we did numerous research.. way before our Guo Da Li ceremony..
but one thing we would encourage all soon-to-be-wed couples out there are..
Don't stress over your Guo Da Li ceremony or do so much research online!
Because you will end up following what your parents want, so sit back and follow instructions.. :) Haha

What is Guo Da Li (过大礼)?

As a modern couple.. I would say searching for gowns, dream venues for wedding, photographer and videographer aren't difficult at all with the help of pininterest, Instagram and other social media etc.. but when it comes to the traditional parts of the wedding.. it can be quite confusing >.<

Guo Da Li (过大礼), or the Chinese betrothal ceremony, marks the important formal meeting between both families and symbolises the groom’s sincerity towards marrying the bride and his assurance that she will be well taken care of after marriage.

Guo Da Li usually takes place 2 to 4 weeks before the wedding day. During the betrothal ceremony, the groom and a matchmaker (Mei Po "
媒婆"), or an elder female relative with good fortune, will present the bride's family with a variety of gifts that represent fertility and prosperity. The items used for the Guo Da Li should always come in pairs as a representation of good fortune and 双双对对.

Different dialect groups will have different items for the Guo Da Li ceremony..
Traditionally is to follow the groom's dialect.. unless the bride is a Teochew.
Teochew is the "biggest" when it comes to Betrothal Gift Ceremony 过大礼, even the groom have to follow the bride's dialect if the bride is Teochew.

Here's what we prepare for our Guo Da Li :)

Guo Da Li items for the Groom's side to prepare:

  • A betrothal basket - to carry the items
  • One pair each of dragon and phoenix candles - Symbolises double happiness 
  • A red packet bearing the bride's price, or 聘金 (Pin Jin)
  • Pig trotters (available in cans) or a platter of roast pork - Gift for the mother-in-law
  • Hard liquor or wine - Gift for the father-in-law
  • Traditional wedding cakes (喜饼) - For bride's family to distribute to relatives
  • Jewellery for the bride (四点金) - For the bride
  • Oranges - Symbolises good luck, good fortune

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