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In the bosom of relatives, close friends, neighbors, the young announced their intention to create a family loudly and received the blessing of their parents and the community.
The traditional Ukrainian engagement by its structure and functions resembled a wedding. The young couple together with their friends invited the guests, relatives and matchmakers in the bride's house, where the ceremony of unifying two generations took place. Actually, all the pre-wedding ritual was built in correlation to this idea.
During the ceremony, the young expressed their mutual consent to marriage, which was consecrated by two generations. The symbols of the unity were towels and bread.
The young were taken out to suburbs, where the senior covered the bread with a towel, laying on the table, then put the hand of the girl and the hand of the guy on the top of it – thus he tied them with a towel. In some cities, this ritual was committed by the girl's mother: she showered the young with the wheat and white wool and gave them honey, which symbolized the unity of the young and their generations.
Then began the solemn blessing of the young by their parents. The latter, by the tradition, sat on the bench covered with a housing (a symbol of wealth in the family), while the senior brought the young to them with the help of handkerchief: the one side he held by himself and the other two held the young. Parents blessed the newlyweds with bread and salt three times, while the young, standing on towel, bowed to their parents three times, taking their blessing. At the end of the ceremony, the relatives exchanged the gifts and what is the most important – gave the gifts to the newlyweds; usually it wasn’t just small gifts, but cattle or the land.
The tradition to stand on the towel has reached even today. This ritual exists even during the official registration of the marriage in the marriage palaces.
In a sign that the girl and the guy are engaged, they exchanged the rings and, in addition, received certain attributes: the groom – a periwinkle flower and the bride – a red ribbon or a flower. In the western regions of Ukraine were more popular the wreaths. The girl did not take it off before the marriage, she even slept in it. There was a belief: if the wreath disappears - there will not be happiness in married life. Hence, obviously, comes the proverb: “A beautiful girl is like matchmade”.