Wedding Traditions – Scaling Back

By December 20, 2012No Comments
Wedding Traditions - Catholic and Interfaith

Wedding Traditions - Unity CandlesPlanning a wedding can be very exciting.  It can also be overwhelming.   This one-of-a-kind event has tons of meaning and everyone – and I mean everyone – has an opinion about what should be included in your wedding and everything leading up to it.  Dauma Del Val of ManageMyLife has made some great recommendations about what wedding traditions can be broken with diminishing your wedding day.   This is a repeat of her post

You Don’t Have to Ask the Bride’s Parents for Permission

Since few women live with their parents when they get engaged, it is simply sentimental tradition to ask for a bride’s hand in marriage. For many couples, the parents are the first called after the bride says yes, but the groom doesn’t often ask them for permission to propose.

You Don’t Need a Bridal Shower

When your bridesmaids and groomsmen live far away, throwing an engagement party for you is next to impossible. Co-workers, friends, or family members can throw you a bridal shower — it is no longer solely the duty of wedding party members. If you have more than one shower, don’t double the invites; people may feel like they are expected to buy multiple presents.

You Don’t Need a Wedding Party

It is not absolutely necessary to include your siblings in the wedding party. There are other ways to involve your family members — they can usher, read, sing, offer a toast, or simply be honored guests next to your parents. Not being a member of the wedding party does not diminish your siblings’ importance.

It’s also okay not to have a bridal party. All you really need is two witnesses to sign your marriage license.

You Don’t Need To Serve Dinner

Don’t feel obligated to offer a full meal, especially if your wedding reception isn’t at dinnertime. Tapas plates or ample hors d’oeuvres are great alternatives to a sit-down dinner.  If you don’t like wedding cake, go with a dessert you do like. Cheesecake, seasonal pies, petit fors, candy and ice cream are all delicious treats.

Just because certain events — like bouquet tossing or cake feeding — are traditions, doesn’t mean they have to be part of your reception. Be firm about your likes and dislikes. Make this event about you and what you want.

You Don’t Have to Take Formal Pictures

While it may be easier to shoot the majority of your photos before the wedding, you may want the element of surprise. If this is true for you, be firm about not seeing your fiance beforehand.  Get photos with the people who are most dear to you and of the specific events within the ceremony and reception that you feel are most important. The most expensive photography package is not always the best for you. Your wedding guests will also take pictures and will be happy to share them with you.

Thank You Notes Are a Must

Thank you note etiquette is where tradition rules. It is never appropriate to fail to send thank you notes to the people who attended your wedding and brought gifts. Soon after the ceremony, dedicate a little time each day to write thoughtful notes to the people who celebrated your day with you. Share the task with your new spouse — he or she can do more than simply sign their name.

A Final Thought

Feel free to pick and choose the traditions that work best for you, even if you do get a lot of opinions. Be brave, be strong and stay committed to what you want your wedding to be.  This is about you.

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