Why are Cans and Shoes Dragged Behind a Wedding Car

Have you wondered why cans and shoes drag behind a wedding car? Weddings are joyous occasions filled with traditions and customs that make the celebration unique and memorable.

One such quirky tradition is tying cans and, sometimes, shoes to the back of the wedding car.

This custom is embraced by couples in some parts of the world. But why do these clattering cans and shoes become the lively companions of a wedding car? Let’s unravel the delightful reasons behind this tradition.

Why are Cans and Shoes Dragged Behind a Wedding Car

Why are Cans and Shoes Dragged Behind a Wedding Car

The practice of tying cans to the back of a wedding car is a tradition that symbolizes good luck, happiness, and the celebration of the newlyweds. It is a tradition that originated from the French tradition of charivari (meaning uproar).

The tradition states that the noisy clattering sound produced by the cans dragging along the road scares away evil spirits and brings good fortune to the couple.

In other words, it aimed to ward off negative energies and protect the newlyweds as they embarked on their journey together. Over time, it has become a fun and lighthearted tradition, with cans often replaced by other noisy items, such as empty bottles or decorations.

As for shoes, while it’s less common than cans, some people tie them behind a wedding car. It’s said that shoes symbolize fertility or stepping into a new life together.

In an outlined form, here are why cans and shoes drag behind a wedding car

Warding off Evil Spirits

Historically, loud noises were believed to scare away evil spirits. The clattering of cans and the dragging of shoes behind the car were believed to protect the newlyweds as they embarked on their journey.

Symbol of Joy and Celebration

The noise created by the cans and shoes is a way to announce and celebrate the newly married couple. It adds a festive and playful element to the wedding festivities.

Good Luck and Prosperity

Dragging cans and shoes may symbolize good luck and prosperity for the newlyweds’ future. It is a wish for a happy, prosperous, and harmonious life together.

Marking the Transition

Tying cans and shoes to the car can symbolize the transition from singlehood to married life. It marks a significant change in the couple’s lives, and the sound of the trailing items signifies the beginning of their new journey together.

Personal and Cultural Symbolism

The choice to include cans or shoes might have personal or cultural significance for the couple. It could be a tradition passed down through generations or a unique way for the couple to express their individuality.

When Should Cans Be Tied To the Back of The Wedding Car?

Why are Cans and Shoes Dragged Behind a Wedding Car

Tying cans to the back of a wedding car can be done immediately following the wedding ceremony.

As the newlyweds leave the ceremony venue, whether it’s a church, temple, courthouse, or any other location, friends or family members often decorate the getaway car with cans attached to strings or ribbons.

The idea is to create a celebratory and noisy send-off for the newly married couple as they embark on their journey together. The clattering sound of the cans is believed to bring good luck and ward off evil spirits.

What are Some Creative Ideas for Decorating the Cans?

Why are Cans and Shoes Dragged Behind a Wedding Car

There are lots of ways to decorate the wedding getaway car with cans. You can add a personal touch to the design and make it look exciting. Here are some of the top creative ways to decorate the wedding car with cans.

Painted Cans

Paint the cans in the wedding colors or a theme that matches the overall decor. Consider adding the couple’s names, wedding dates, or other personalized details.

Ribbons and Bows

Tie colorful ribbons and bows around the cans to create a festive and elegant look. You can use satin ribbons, lace, or even patterned fabric that complements the wedding theme.


Attach artificial or fresh flowers to the cans for a romantic and natural touch. Choose flowers that match the day’s color or the wedding flower arrangements.

Glitter and Sparkle

Add a touch of glamour by covering the cans in glitter or sequins. This can create a dazzling effect, especially when caught in the sunlight.

Photo Collage

Print small photos of the couple and attach them to the cans. This personalized touch adds a sentimental element to the decoration.

Themed Decorations

If the wedding has a specific theme (e.g., vintage, rustic, beach), incorporate elements of that theme into the can decorations. For example, use burlap and twine for a rustic look or seashells for a beach theme.

Tulle and Fabric

Wrap the cans in tulle or fabric for a soft and romantic appearance. Combine different textures and colors for an eye-catching effect.

How Many Cans Should Be Tied to the Back of the Wedding Car?

Why are Cans and Shoes Dragged Behind a Wedding Car

The number of cans tied to the back of a wedding car is often a matter of personal preference and creativity. There is no strict rule governing the exact number of cans.

It varies based on individual choices and traditions. In some traditions, certain numbers have some significance, for example, seven which stands for perfection. The couple might use seven cans to symbolize perfection in all good things for the marriage.

How do You Decorate a Car for a Wedding?

You can decorate a car for a wedding in several ways. The choice of wedding car decoration strongly depends on the couple’s choice, budget, and belief system.

Here are some of the decoration styles you can implement:

Just Married Sign

A classic “Just Married” sign is a simple and traditional choice. You can purchase pre-made signs or create a custom one that matches the wedding theme.

Floral Decorations

Attach flowers to the various car parts, such as the door handles, side mirrors, or the front grille. This adds a touch of romance and elegance. This is the most common wedding car decoration in this contemporary time.


Tie balloons to the car for a playful and colorful look. You can choose balloons in the wedding colors or opt for metallic or confetti-filled balloons.

Tulle and Ribbons

Wrap the car in tulle or ribbons to create a soft and romantic appearance. Consider using the wedding colors or coordinating with the overall theme.

Streamers and Banners

Hang streamers or banners on the back of the car. These can be personalized with the couple’s names, wedding dates, or other messages.

Garlands and Swags

Drape garlands or swags along the car’s exterior. You can use greenery, flowers, or fabric to create a decorative border.

Ribbon Bow on the Roof

Tie a large ribbon bow to the car’s roof. This is a classic and elegant touch.

Who Should Decorate The Wedding Car?

There is no central answer to this because the responsibility for decorating the wedding car varies depending on cultural norms, personal preferences, and the overall wedding planning process.

In many cases, friends or family members of the couple take on the responsibility of decorating the wedding car. In a situation where the couple hires a wedding planner, the wedding planner might be in charge of decorating the car.

Which Car Colour is Best for Wedding?

Why are Cans and Shoes Dragged Behind a Wedding Car

No one color is best for a wedding. The best car color for a wedding is subjective and depends on personal preferences, the overall theme of the wedding, and the couple’s style. Here are some popular choices for wedding car colors and the sentiments they may evoke:

Classic White

White is a traditional and timeless choice for wedding cars. It symbolizes purity, innocence, and elegance. White cars are versatile and pair well with any wedding color scheme.

Timeless Black

Black is another classic and sophisticated option. It exudes a sense of formality and luxury. Black cars can provide a sleek and stylish backdrop for the couple.

Romantic Red

Red is a vibrant and passionate color associated with love and romance. A red wedding car can make a bold statement and add a touch of drama to the celebration.

Silver or Gray

Silver or gray cars offer a modern and chic look. These colors are neutral and can complement a variety of wedding themes and colors.

Champagne or Gold

Champagne or gold cars exude luxury and glamour. These warm tones can create a sense of opulence and sophistication, making them popular choices for elegant weddings.

Soft Pastels

Some couples opt for soft pastel colors, such as light pink, baby blue, or mint green, for a whimsical and romantic feel. These colors can add a touch of sweetness to the wedding car.

Burgundy or Deep Maroon

Deep, rich colors like burgundy or maroon can convey a sense of richness and warmth. These hues are often chosen for fall or winter weddings.

Vintage Colors

Couples planning a vintage-themed wedding may choose classic and muted colors such as cream, ivory, or light blue for a nostalgic touch.


The tradition of tying cans and shoes to the back of a wedding car goes beyond a mere decorative style. It is rooted in various beliefs, such as warding off evil spirits, symbolizing joy and celebration, and marking the transition into married life.

However, these only pertain to people of certain cultural beliefs as it is not a worldwide phenomenon.

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