Updated: Jul 30
In the 21st century it’s not uncommon for couples to want their special day to be totally unique and personal to themselves and their relationship.
Achieving this doesn’t necessarily mean that all wedding traditions have to go out of the window though and in this blog post we explore some creative ways of putting a modern spin on well-known wedding traditions.
Photo - Matthew Priestley Photography
The Wedding Dress
Whilst many believe that white wedding dresses are a symbol of purity, this is not actually the case. Wedding dresses became traditionally white in 1840 following the marriage of Queen Victoria to Albert of Saxe-Coburg. In-fact, the colour of purity is actually blue.
In recent years there has been a large rise in brides opting for different coloured wedding dresses which better suit their taste. After all, why wear something that just isn’t you on the biggest day of your life?
Giving the Bride Away
The act of the father giving away the bride dates back to times when daughters were seen as possessions so the meaning behind this sentimental act is not necessarily as lovely as many may think.
Of course every bride’s circumstances are different and therefore the traditional option may not be the right one for them. Some brides like to be walked down the aisle by both parents while some brides like to be independent and make the walk alone. In situations where the father is absent for whatever reason the bride might ask her mother, close family member or friend to walk her down the aisle instead. Some very modern couples even choose to walk down the aisle together as a symbol of equality and strength.
Some religions have brought about the tradition that the family and friends of each person entering the marriage sit on different sides of the altar for the wedding ceremony. Whilst this simple rule might make the logistics easier for some couples (and the ushers!) it can also cause problems when one person has more guests than the other.
Some also see it as an unnecessary divide and prefer their guests to get to be treated as one. So why not adopt a ‘we are all family here’ approach and let your guests mingle from the off!
The Wedding Party
The tradition of bridesmaids came about in biblical times when a bride would bring servants to assist her on her wedding day (literally the bride’s maids). The history behind groomsmen is much more sinister and dates back to a time when women didn’t get a say in who they married and the groomsmen would be sent to essentially abduct her.
Thankfully times changed and with new traditions brides typically choose a handful of their closest female friends to be their bridesmaids and grooms choose their closest male friends to be their groomsmen. All for love and support on the happiest day of their lives.
However, times are now changing again, as the social divide between men and women closes it is much more common for males and females to be close friends. This means that we are seeing a surge in female ‘best men’ and mixed gender ‘hens’. After all, what does gender matter when it comes to your nearest and dearest?
A wedding is often the most special and happiest day of a couple’s life. Surrounded by the people they love the most. So it is no wonder that many couples don’t feel quite right about leaving their beloved pet at home. After all, a dog is a man’s best friend!
With a wealth of relaxed wedding venues now out there to choose from, you can make your fury friend a part of your big day (even as the ring bearer!) and there are a number of companies who specialise in pet chaperoning to take any stress out of the situation too!
The Top Table
Traditionally seated at the top table of a wedding are the new married couple, both sets of parents, the chief bridesmaid and the best man. However this arrangement isn’t always ideal for the modern and more complex family set up and can cause quite a lot of stress and anxiety all round.
In order to avoid the difficult decision of who sits on the top table and a lot of awkwardness on the day why not opt for a 2 seater top table? This allows the happy couple to spend some quality time together (which is rare on a wedding day!) and also allows your traditional top table guests to sit on a table where they will be more comfortable.