Alright guys, let’s talk about wedding traditions.
There are SO many traditions out there and each one has their own unique origins. The thing is though, those origins may not be relatable to your life and your values. I believe that traditions are a great way to honor the past, if it makes sense to you, your beliefs and your story. Your wedding is all about telling your love story and sharing it with your loved ones. The truth is, your story is unique and should be showcased. Sometimes wedding traditions fit who you and your future spouse are, but sometimes they just don’t. We only do it because it’s what’s always been done. That’s when you should consider other options for your wedding day. Here are some of the traditions we think deserve a second thought.
First and foremost, reconsider waiting to see each other until your ceremony.
Now, some people believe there is bad luck associated with this and for some it may be a religious belief that has made your decision to not see each other before the ceremony. If that’s the case, that is great! I really do believe that your wedding day should be tailored to your individualistic needs and preferences.
If you haven’t given it much thought and were only going to wait to see one another because that’s how you’ve always seen it done, I strongly encourage you to take some time to weigh your options. Deciding to do a first look could be a wonderful choice for you. Yianni and I love these so much and highly recommend them to all of our couples who are open to the idea of seeing each other before the ceremony. In fact, I wrote an entire blog on first looks and how it can make such a huge difference on your wedding day! You can check it out here: First look: Is it for you?
It really can give your timeline so much more wiggle room, allow you to spend more time with the guests who came to see you and gives you a very unique opportunity to share an extremely intimate moment alone with your husband/wife that you wouldn’t have had otherwise. It really is something to give heavy consideration to, prior to forming your wedding timeline.
Let’s talk about those delicious cakes.
I am the very first person to eyeball that cake when I walk into the reception, but there are so many other options to consider before committing to a cake! Trust me, that amazingly talented cake artist can make other goodies too! Some people (wonderful people, might I add) are going with a donut wall! Others are choosing a variety of cupcakes instead of one full cake. Heck, some people are really going for it and creating a whole dessert portion table! (Essentially, having your cake and eating it too, I suppose.) There are so many options that can help add that specialized touch to the dessert portion of your big day.
With that being said, cakes are SO versatile and they can provide a unique taste (see what I did there 😉 lol) to your wedding all on their own. There are so many wildly talented businesses out there that can work with you to create a masterpiece that helps tell your story!
For this next tradition, I definitely have a personal opinion on this one, so bare with me. Limos.
When you watch a romantic movie and their on their way to the wedding, so many people are still shown hopping into a limo! If your dream wedding always opens with a limo pulling up to the venue, by all means, you rent the prettiest limo out there, skip this step and move on to the next. For the rest of you, don’t do it because it seems like “the thing to do”. If that’s not what you’ve been dreaming of, there are countless other options available to you.
Guys, it is your WEDDING DAY!! Get creative and do something you’ve always wanted to do! Get a horse and carriage if you love fairy-tales. Are you a huge action fan?? Rent a super, sweet ride you may never have a chance to ride in otherwise. Are you old-fashion and have always loved the vintage luxury cars? Do it! This is YOUR moment! I have attended weddings where the bridal party arrived in a party bus, a trolley, and even by boat (yeah, how James Bond is that?!)! I have even seen a couple show up to their reception in a helicopter. Yes, you read that right. It was a dream of both of theirs to ride in a helicopter.
So why not do it on your wedding day and have a majorly epic entrance?! So when the possibilities are endless, why stick with the tradition of a limo without looking into anything else? I don’t know about you, but limos are hard enough to climb in and out of (does anyone do that gracefully?). So you should be 110% sure that is what you want before you find yourself crawling into a limo in your giant, gorgeous wedding gown with your 4 inch heels trying not to trip over your cathedral veil. Unpopular opinion, that is not a fun time. So think twice about a limo, unless you have the option of a hummer limo. Always choose the hummer limo.
This is a tradition that has been slowly making it’s exiting, and guys, I’m excited about it. Matching bridesmaid dresses.
Ya’ll. You know that all of your friends are not the same size, shape and most certainly do not have the same style. Do you know how happy you make them when you give them even the slightest bit of flexibility in their outfit for the day?! You know that they want to look good and make you happy. There are so many beautiful dresses out there that are similar but have small variations in style. Allowing your friends to choose different sleeves or necklines is such an incredibly simple gesture to show your best friends that they are standing up there because you love them.
A trend that is really catching on (cue my happy dance); same color palette, different patterns/shades. This is my all-time favorite look!! It gives your wedding such a sophisticated look and really adds such a chic pop to your wedding aesthetic. Matching bridesmaids dresses are definitely beautiful and will always hold such a classic look. Just don’t limit yourself by thinking that they are the only option. Make sure you check out what’s out there. Just don’t forget to bring your crew shopping with you ! This way they can add their thoughts; they will love you for it (even more than they already do!).
One other tradition that seems to be changing for the better is your wedding guest book.
As a photographer, I promise you that I truly think it is so important to preserve the memory of who joined you for one of the happiest days of your life. I’m just not convinced that a plain book with lines for guests to add their name is the best way to do it. Some people are creating their own scrapbook, filled with their photos and memories for guests to browse through during cocktail hour and sign with a message. I once saw the cutest custom made magazine with their engagement photos, excerpts of their love story and places for guests to sign. What a totally unique and fun way to showcase those photos that you love so much.
Another favorite of mine is by, Kate Shore at Shoreline Paintery. She makes these stunning canvas as a beautiful alternative to your guest book. This way you can hang it in your home and be reminded of all the people you love that attended your wedding day. It is also a great way to tie in your wedding theme!
There are so many ways to make your wedding day uniquely you. So why limit yourself to the standard traditions? Do what makes sense for you as a couple and what ties in with your values. You will be so happy with the results.
With all of this being said, I think it’s very important to hear this side note.
I probably sound like a broken record at this point, but I can not stress this enough. Your wedding day is about you, the person you love and your love story. Nothing else. If you feel that none of these suggestions enhance your day and the way you want to spend it, that is completely okay. You don’t need a fancy arrival to make the day special. Your love story and all those there to celebrate it with you will take care of that all on it’s own. If you choose to have your bridal party wear whatever they pick on their own or having them matching from head to toe, the only important part is that they are standing next to you on such an important day. Wedding planning can be overwhelming at times, but it can also be extremely joyful customizing your whole wedding. The key is to focus on what matters; your relationship. Cherish these moments and the rest is all a piece of cake (or donut, if that’s what you prefer.)!