Mother’s Day customs around the world

In many UK households, the fourth Sunday of Lent will start with breakfast in bed and a bouquet of flowers. Absolutely wonderful! But did you know that people in other corners of the globe are celebrating their mums in very different ways? Have a look at these Mother’s Day customs and facts from all around the world…

mother's day customs


“Feliz Dia das Mães!” On the second Sunday of May, Brazilians celebrate their mums with lots of different gifts. Even though Mother’s Day is not acknowledged as an official holiday, it is still the second most commercially profitable day. The one day that beats Mother’s Day (commercially) is Christmas.


One day is obviously not enough to celebrate our lovely mums. They deserve to be celebrated – or at least appreciated – on a daily basis. In India, the Hindus tried to find the golden mean by dedicating a 10-day festival to Durga, the goddess of mothers. The festival is known as Durga Puja and is celebrated each October. It is considered both a religious ceremony and a time for families to reunite. They spend weeks preparing food, gathering gifts and decorating their homes for the festival.

mother's day customs


Did you know that in 1920 mothers of large families were awarded medals by the French government? They were shown gratitude for their help to rebuild the population after so many lives were lost in World War I. Nowadays, a flower-shaped cake is a traditional gift for Mother’s Day, which is celebrated on the last Sunday of May. “Bonne fête des mères!”


In Ethiopia, they celebrate their mothers over a three-day feast called Antrosht. The feast includes a large traditional meal, of which the mothers have the honour to prepare. Ethiopian girls collect ingredients like butter, cheese and vegetables, while boys bring bull or lamb. This Mother’s Day custom takes place mid-fall; at the end of the rainy season.

mother's day customs
Japanese celebrate by giving Carnations to their mothers

Flowers for Mother’s Day

In lots of other countries, they treat mums to breakfast in bed, cake and of course… flowers! This happens – amongst lots of other countries – in the UK, Norway, Japan and the Netherlands. Somewhere in the mid-’30s, the slogan “Moederdag-Bloemendag” was introduced in the Netherlands, which means: Mother’s Day-Flowers Day.


How or when we celebrate Mother’s Day may vary, but the thought remains the same: honouring our mums for all they do for our families. And let’s be honest: who doesn’t like to be spoiled from time to time?!   Sticking to the gift of beautiful flowers? Head over to your local florist!

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