One of the most commonly used phrases I hear as a wedding photographer is "we are having a non-traditional wedding". Now, "non-traditional" is open to interpretation and we find that is has as wide a spectrum as the sun has UV rays. One person's non-traditional is a sequin gown with a piñata at the reception and a deep green velour colour palette. Another person's non-traditional is black tuxedos and a bridal party in all white rather than a different colour to the bride.
So what I am saying is it holds different meaning for everyone and I as a photographer love it all. As a wedding industry professional, I can tell you the main things couples are ditching on their day in order to help you find your own meaning of non-traditional.
Now, my girl Teagan O'Brien from O'Brien Originals delves into wedding traditions pretty hard so check her page and Instagram out for information on the WHY regarding all of these things but I am here to show you a few things I feel you can easily forego if you want to.
1. Wedding favours on the table.
Your budget is going to go over, lets be real. You start to think about what to cut, you definitely don't want to scrimp on your florist and photographer, so what can get cut? Wedding favours! Half of them get left behind at the venue or thrown away at home. I see it all the time. No one reallly needs them, you are already thanking them for coming with free food and booze.
2. You can walk yourself down the aisle, I give you permission.
Some couples don't have anyone to walk them down the aisle, some do and choose not to go the traditional route and some have their special family member walk them down. They all leave the wedding as happily married as each other. No one will judge you for it, they will all be thinking how beautiful you are and will most likely have tears in their eyes clouding their vision anyway so go for gold.
3. The need to invite everyone you've ever met
Your guest list should be up to you two, and you two alone. Even if someone is helping you pay for your wedding, that doesn't give them guest list power, contrary to popular belief. I hear allll too often that the couple didn't get to spend much time together or with their nearest and dearest because they were making their way through masses of extended family they never see and their parents friends from school haha. Now don't get me wrong I love a big wedding, it is a vibe and a half but have a big wedding full of people YOU love. Or have a small wedding full of people you love. It's all the same to me, I am just happy to be there. But you need to be happy to be there too.
4. Wearing an engagement ring AND wedding band.
I am seeing a trend in couples having one ring each. Specifically brides because they're the ones typically donning two. Lots of brides are sticking with just the engagement ring as their entire symbol of love. They pop it off on the wedding day then pop it right back on during the ceremony. Fun fact, this is what I will be doing myself!
5. Having a wedding party or going it alone.
More and more couples are opting out of having a wedding party (bridesmaids, groomsmen, bridemen and groomswomen), whatever combo you like, it's become a thing to not have them up there with you. Some people find it incredibly hard to choose among their friends, some people have had the same 3-5 besties forever and couldn't imagine their wedding without them by their side. Whichever way you roll, do what makes you happy. Which is the theme of this entire post. It's your wedding day!