Three Wedding Traditions I’d like to See make a Come-Back + Three I’m okay Parting Ways With!
Waiting until the ceremony to see each other!
My all-time favorite tradition. I used to praise the “first look” but after having seen many a moment where that first look occurs as the bride is walking down the aisle, I have changed my mind on this entirely. I realize that this does not work with the itinerary of every couple and am not deferring this option, but in my opinion when a couple sees one another at the ceremony for the first time, it is a moment you cannot possibly create in a first look. With everyone there, the entire atmosphere is different… waiting to see one another until the ceremony is one of the best traditions there is.
If time allows for this: do recommend!
Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue… a Sixpence in your Shoe!
Hold up… a what in your shoe? Yes! A penny in your shoe! Traditionally these items were designed as good luck charms for your wedding day. In modern times, it seems some of these time-honored traditions are losing their appeal and we’ve completely disregarded the penny altogether.
Personally, I’d LOVE to see this tradition remain relevant and make a come-back!
Here’s what each tradition means: Something old represents continuity, something new represents hope for the future, something borrowed represents borrowed happiness, something blue represents purity, love, and fidelity and the sixpence in your shoe represents good fortune.
Okay, this has lost tradition because many locations forbid it and for good reason: it’s messy and requires clean up. The symbolism behind throwing rice is giving “new life”, often referring to the couple’s future and the blessing of children. There are alternatives to discuss with your venue: bird seed, rose petals, bubbles, and sparklers are my personal favorites! I’m slowly seeing this trend die off which makes me sad because the best part about this tradition, from a photographer’s perspective, is that it makes for great portraits!
Traditions I’m okay parting ways with:
The White Dress
Traditionally the bride wears a white dress. This tradition has many origins, some of which I believe may have been altered through the years, but the original reason the bride wore a white dress was not a representation of purity but of wealth. Often, the wealthiest of women could afford a white dress where as those not blessed in this department often wore their best dress, even if their best dress was black.
Clearly our ancestors have never seen an ivory, champagne or blush pink wedding gown, amiright?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying toss that white dress in the garbage, just don’t get caught up if you love a dress that isn’t white!
Bouquet + Garter Toss
Let me just say: I do not dislike the bouquet and garter toss tradition, but more and more I’m seeing this cut on the wedding day and I’m okay with it. It seems that a lot of modern brides are tossing traditions that are for lack of a better term: silly. My personal experience is that this tradition works well with specific crowds, the more engaged the crowd is the better traditions like this play out.
We’re all different and unique, if you’re not a fan of the bouquet toss you are not alone and I have a solution if this is not your cup of tea: give the bouquet to your mother. This is a new tradition forming at weddings and I absolutely recommend this if you’re on the fence about including the toss in your wedding day. And mom will love it, so bonus!
The Dollar Dance
Of all the wedding traditions, I have to say, this is my least favorite. (Am I allowed to say that?) Oh, the dollar dance. I have a love/hate relationship with this tradition. On one hand the dollar dance provides the opportunity to have photographs with more of your guests and in this respect, I see the appeal. Well, I mean other than of course the obvious appeal of your friends and relatives handing you money, haha!
On the other hand, it takes for-ev-er. It takes out a huge chunk of your reception.
May I suggest, if you’re considering ditching the dollar dance: a honeymoon donation jar? Get your DJ on board, maybe even make him “keeper of the jar” and have it at his booth for your guests to donate to.
What are your thoughts? Are there traditions you love? Are there traditions you’re okay with tossing? Let me know in the comments!!
P.S. It goes without saying: Every wedding is unique and even if there are a few traditions I’m okay saying bye to, it does not mean I do not honor and appreciate what you love and admire! I will be right there with you as your photographer when you toss your bouquet or incorporate a dollar dance, please do not see this as a suggestion to not include these in your own wedding! On a real note: I love weddings in their entirety, though I have favorites, I love everything about every wedding I photograph!