As times change, the way we celebrate occasions tends to change with it. Christenings aren’t a given for new babies, birthday cards are sent via Facebook and I can’t remember the last time I went to a ‘house warming’ party. However, there is one event where traditions and customs have stood the test of time, Weddings. We still wear white wedding dresses, follow bridesmaids down the aisle, are ‘given away’ by our fathers and feed each other wedding cake, often without even stopping to question why.
While these customs and rituals are comforting for many brides, others are left feeling restricted and controlled as their ‘dream wedding’ doesn’t fit the classic mould. The good news? Many brides are altering expectations or doing away with them altogether in pursuit of their perfect day. Here are some ways you can too!
Ladies, take a knee!
It’s 2018 and the ‘leap-year’ rule is well and truly dated. So if your man is taking is time to pop the question, ladies consider yourself more than allowed to beat him to it! While this would be unthinkable for more conventional couples, if you know your man would appreciate the gesture then feel free to take a knee!
The legend of the male wedding-planner
We all know the stereotype of the disinterested groom who would rather call off the wedding than feign interest in planning the wedding. A cliché that as it turns out, isn’t an excuse anymore. While we aren’t expecting your man to spend his nights pouring over colour swatches or pinterest-ing cake designs, the wedding is a celebration for the both of you and duties should be shared. This is a win win as giving the groom important tasks lightens your plate and makes the day a shared effort.
Have a hen’s night you won’t remember.
Hen’s nights don’t have quite the same reputation as Stag Do’s, there can certainly be an expectation that they have to involve a great amount of alcohol, nudity and ebaressment. However, the classic stripper and shots certainly isn’t going to be every bride’s idea of fun – so break the status quo with a weekend away, or classy dinner out.
The longer they wait the more the suspense, right?
It’s usually rude for a host to keep her guests waiting but at a wedding this is common practice, with brides often arriving around 10 minutes late. A sure-fire way to create suspense and command a little regard, it’s not unheard of for brides to take it a little too far, keeping frustrated guests waiting for over 15-20 minutes. Many brides have given up the silly practice, instead walking in just 5 minutes later, knowing that no matter when they arrive, all eyes are on them.
Daddy Daughter Duo
As the man of the house, it’s tradition that the father ‘gives away’ his daughter to the husband. Many brides see this as a meaningful and sentimental moment with others feeling that it is old-fashioned and repressive. Thankfully, the ‘giving away’ of you to your husband is more symbolic than literal, with many couples taking this as an excuse to do away with it altogether. It’s increasingly common for fathers to just walk their daughters to the front pew where they sit, or for brides to even walk themselves down maybe accompanied by their mother, brother, family member or friend.
No Veil, no Deal.
Think of a bride and you’ll probably imagine a woman in a big white dress, with a big bouquet of flowers and a long white veil. While long lacy veils can look stunning in both the ceremony and photographs, Brides are taking more creative license with their hair accessories. Whetehr it’s a intricate flower crown, diamond tiara or traditional veil, you will always look best with an accessory that suits your personality, not traditional conventions.
It’s not right to wear white
Once wearing white or light colors to a wedding was cause for accusatory gossip and disapproving looks. But as nude hues come back into style, it isn’t uncommon to see bridesmaids or mothers of the bride to be dressed up in off-white shades. While guests should certainly stay away from anything ivory, cream or pearly white, Brides shouldn’t feel any reservations about using the colour for their bridal party.
Ceremony then Reception
As married couples will know, one of the hardest parts of planning a wedding is the guest lists. In particular, deciding who comes to the wedding and who makes it to the reception. For couples who have large extended families and lots of friends, it can be a painful process having to feel like they can’t afford – or fit! – everyone at their reception. The fix? Break the traditional Ceremony and Reception structure by having a post-ceremony afternoon tea followed by a smaller reception with a select few. This way attendees can spend time around the newly-wed couple and feel a part of the celebration, without having to be part of the later reception.