Same-sex weddings are becoming increasing common. Still, traditions are not established, and many couples, as well as their friends and family, often have questions of etiquette.
Ultimately, many issues surrounding a same-sex wedding are flexible and personal, and you should decide what the perfect wedding means for you. However, here are our answers to some common questions that we often come across.
Who proposes? Each couple is different, and who proposes will be an agreement that each couple makes differently. A marriage proposal can be spontaneous, or it can be a decision that the couple makes jointly. It can even be a race to see who can come up with a romantic surprise first. Finally, one piece of reasonable advice is that the partner who proposes should be the one who was more reserved about the legal commitment of marriage.
Pre-parties—together or separately? In a same-sex marriage, the friends of one partner are frequently also the friends of the other partner. In this case, it doesn’t make so much sense to have separate pre-parties, although these do happen occasionally. However, the trend is actually to skip pre-parties altogether, and to simply focus on having a great party after the ceremony in which everyone can participate.
Who will you walk with down the aisle? The tradition of being given away by the parent might still be followed in some same-sex weddings, but it's increasingly common for the couple to walk down the aisle together. This part of the ceremony strongly signifies equality and unity, and it’s even becoming popular among opposite-sex couples for this reason.
Who pays? Traditionally, the families of the couple contributed to the costs of the wedding. However 86% of same-sex couples pay for their weddings themselves. This makes the wedding free from outside pressures and allows the couple to choose what they think is best.
Taking the last name? While it’s not common for one of the partners to take the last name of the other partner, it certainly happens occasionally. It’s a personal decision, but one that you might want to consider.
Do you have any other questions, or do you need help starting your wedding planning? Write us an email at CONTACT, and we’ll be glad to help.
The history of same-sex weddings developed without many of the pressures that accompanied opposite-sex weddings. As a result, this led to some cool and innovative trends and practices. Now that same-sex weddings are becoming more common and widely accepted, let's look at 5 trends that have emerged over the years.
Walking down the aisle together. Most same-sex couples choose to walk down the aisle together. This trend powerfully symbolizes the couple’s equality and unity, and because of this, it's being adopted even outside of same-sex weddings.
Watches instead of engagement rings. For a long time, the tradition was to have an engagement ring at the time of the proposal, and to add wedding bands to this during the wedding ceremony. While the majority of same-sex couples still opt for wedding bands, many gay, and some lesbian couples, are choosing watches instead of diamond engagement rings Of course, engagement watches are luxury items that are designed to last for a lifetime.
Both partners wearing engagement rings. While some couples are avoiding engagement rings altogether, others are embracing them even more, by having each partner wear an engagement ring. Some couples complement these engagement rings with wedding bands, while other couples take off their engagement rings before the wedding day, and use them as wedding bands during the ceremony.
Writing your own vows. It’s consistent with the typically intimate atmosphere of same-sex weddings to write customized, personal vows. Don’t know where to start? Check out our article on 3 same-sex wedding vows.
Original attire. Many same-sex couples are bucking tradition and are choosing colors, patterns, and cuts that are not typical for wedding suits and gowns. Many are taking this even further, and are opting for relaxed but elegant summer wear, even going so far as to wear flip flops at a beach wedding.
Do you need ideas for your wedding, or help with putting it together? Write to us an email at CONTACT, and let us know what's on your mind.
At Wishhper, we help couples plan, organize, and carry out their weddings. It's not surprising that we've dealt with lots of unexpected situation, and that we have a ton of advice for anybody who is putting on a wedding. Here are 6 of our top tips for ensuring that your wedding day turns out perfectly, and that you avoid the regrets that we've heard often in the business.
Hire a videographer. Not hiring a videographer is the most repeated regret we hear. Photographs are great, but they only tell a part of the story. Video can capture the wedding day in a unique way that you will treasure for the rest of your life.
Splurge on a photographer. Along with video, wedding photos will be what’s left of your wedding after the big day is over. However, taking good wedding photos is a practiced craft, and there’s a wide variety in the skill of different photographers. There won’t be a second chance to capture those magical moments, so it makes sense to get a professional, fantastic photographer.
Hire a wedding coordinator. Ok, we are a little biased here, but this was a common complaint of many couples. Weddings can be incredibly exciting but also overwhelming, and many people get so stressed out about managing the wedding that they fail to enjoy the experience. Hiring a wedding coordinator ensures that you don’t fall into this trap, and that you can focus on what’s really important.
Don't forget to eat. With all the running around and all the commotion, you might forget until late into your wedding day. This can cause your energy to crash suddenly, and it might also spell trouble when it comes time to have a few drinks at the celebration.
Book entertainment for kids. Weddings that have a larger number of kids can get out of control if the kids get bored, rowdy, or cranky. It's a good idea to plan for this, and to book some kid entertainment. This way, the kids won’t disrupt the party for the adults, and their parents can enjoy themselves more.
Embrace your nervousness. It’s perfectly normal to feel nervous during your wedding day, and telling yourself to calm down might only make things get out of control. Instead, simply recognize that the butterflies you are feeling are excitement over the amazing day you are about to have, and start enjoying this once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Need more tips, or need an expert photographer, videographer, or wedding coordinator? Write us an email at CONTACT, and we’ll make sure that your wedding day is a success.
A wedding is also a party, and you should put in some thought and effort to make sure everybody is having a good time, and that you can look back on this day and wonder and laugh at all the fun things that happened. So here are 6 recommendations to make your wedding more fun.
Hand out quirky party favors. It's traditional to offer little presents or treats to guests at a wedding. Often, these are cute and custom things, such as a mason jar filled with homemade jam or retro gumballs. But to really get the party moving, give away something that will get people talking to each other and having fun. For example, colorful sunglasses or funky masks will allow people to get into character and the night will soon take off.
Set the scene with the first dance. The couple does the first dance, and if they make a slow and stately performance, chances are that the guests will subconsciously follow and it might take a while for the party to really get going. However, if you set the scene with a fun, wild dance that gets people laughing, very soon, others will be laughing and joining you in the craziness.
Have a kids' corner. If your wedding will have lots of kids, keep them well-entertained to make sure both they and their parents can enjoy themselves. Few things will dampen a party better than a large number of kids who have gotten bored, rowdy, or cranky. Hire a babysitter, set aside an area where the kids can watch movies, or even consider bringing on some custom entertainment for them like a magician.
Choose a few games. There are a number of party games that can get your guests laughing and interacting with each other. These aren't just drinking games—they can be tasteful and fun, and they can allow everyone to know the couple and the other guests better. For starters, check out "the shoe game" or "he said, she said".
Add a twist to the photobooth. Photobooths are a great way for you and your guests to have fun and to share memories after the wedding. To really make it a great wedding, provide a photobooth, but add a twist. Give people props or costumes that they can wear inside the photobooth, and watch them start playing and giggling.
End the night in a spectacular way. Make sure that your guests will stick around to the end by letting them know of a special treat that will happen at the end of the party. Some ideas are sparklers and confetti, fireworks, or paper lanterns that you will light and release.
Need more great ideas to make your wedding fun? Write us an email at CONTACT, and we'll figure out exactly what's right for your big day.
,When it comes to picking a wedding location, don’t allow yourself to be bound by tradition. While a restaurant or a hotel are tried-and-true sites for holding a wedding, there’s a growing trend of having your wedding location in some unique and unexpected spots. Let’s take a look at the best ones.
Converted industrial buildings. While a converted factory or mill might not sound like the most romantic backdrop, this has actually been one of the hottest trends in alternative wedding locations. Once an industrial space is emptied of the actual equipment, the buildings that remain have a surprisingly modern and elegant feel. If you are interested in a trendy site like this, you will need to do some research to find a place that is well-lit and open enough to serve for a wedding.
National parks. Outdoor weddings have been popular for years, but of all outdoor locations, perhaps the most magnificent ones are national parks. There's a reason places are protected-- they offer amazing views and a natural environment that relaxes and fascinates at the same time. In order to make your wedding happen in a national park, you will need to figure out the regulations about what kinds of facilities you are allowed to set up, and how big your wedding party can be.
Museums. Ranging from classical and elegant to fun and quirky, museums can be a great place to hold a wedding. They are typically large and spacious, beautifully designed, and have plenty of talking points for the guests. An art museum is an obvious choice, but if you have some special affinity, whether history or dinosaurs, then other kinds museums can also have their charms.
Botanical gardens. A botanical garden is a kind of combination of a museum and a national park. Hold your wedding here, and you will be surrounded by exotic flowers, elegant canopies of trees, fountains, paths, and hidden romantic nooks.
Boat venues. Having a wedding on a boat or a yacht doesn't mean you have to be sailing the whole time. The boat can be docked for the majority of the day, but it can go for a cruise as part of the after-party. Altogether, being on the water can prove to be romantic and refreshing, and of course, it will offer a fantastic backdrop for the wedding pictures.
Vineyards. Vineyards strike a balance between the natural and rustic on the one hand, and the sophisticated and cultured on the other. Thanks to the rolling hills, the sunshine, and of course the wine, a vineyard can be a unique and memorable place to tie the knot.
Do you need help in choosing a wedding location? Or do you already have a wedding location you’ve set your heart on, but you need help in making it a reality? Get in touch with us an email at CONTACT, and we’ll be sure to help.
Choosing the right officiant for your wedding is crucial. The officiant leads the ceremony, and sets the emotional tone of the wedding. The person you ultimately choose for this role needs to be confident and comfortable in this position, and needs to work with you to design a ceremony that truly expresses the unique relationship you and your partner have.
So where to start? Basically, you have two options. You can either choose a friend to serve as officiant, or you can hire a trained officiant.
In either case, make sure you start the search early and that you settle on the right person far ahead of the wedding date. The officiant will be involved in deciding how the ceremony will go, and this takes time. In order for everything to be perfect on the big day, don't wait for the last minute.
If you are living in a country where same-sex marriage is officially recognized, you will want an officiant who is legally capable of performing the ceremony. With a trained officiant, this won’t be an issue. If you would like to go with a friend for this role, then they can get licensed through various organizations or churches to become an officiant. Again, this takes some time, so settle this issue early.
If you don't live in a country that recognizes same-sex marriage, this kind of licensing won't be relevant, but that doesn't make the role of the officiant any less important. In fact, since the wedding is less likely to follow religious traditions in this case, the role of the officiant will be all the greater. For this reason, you need to find somebody you feel very comfortable with, and who can express the unique aspects of your relationship during the ceremony.
Asking a friend to officiate your wedding has the advantage that this is somebody who is already important in your life, who knows you and your partner well, and who you have a special chemistry with. On the other hand, it's important that if you go down this route, your friend enters this responsibility willingly, that you can work together effectively to write the ceremony in time, and that he or she will be able to stand in front of your friends and family and deliver the ceremony with poise.
A trained officiant won't have the benefit of already being familiar with the couple, but that's why it's important to start this search in time so the officiant has time to get to know you and your partner. The advantage of going with a trained officiant is that you will have somebody with experience who confidently carry out the ceremony.
There are lots of options when it comes to this important decision. if you need help finding an officiant for your wedding, write us an email at CONTACT, and we will help.
It's a sad but inevitable reality in many families that some members won't be supportive of same-sex relationships, and that they will be even less supportive of same-sex weddings.
So what should you do when it's time to make up the guest list? Should you invite these relatives, even though they've hurt you in the past and might do so again? Should you not invite them, even though they are family, and though they are important to you in other ways?
There are widely varying opinions on this. Writing for the New York Times, author Steven Petrow had this to say:
Take the high road and invite all your family members, even if you think they don’t support your relationship. After all, it takes an awfully cold-hearted person to sit through a wedding ceremony and not be moved—if not to tears, at least to acceptance. Consider this a unique opportunity to change some hearts and minds.
Petrow believes that there's no way to get wedding participants to sign a pledge that they will be nice. Instead, he advises that you simply phrase your invitations to say, "You are invited to come and support us as we commit to our life together."
Many others take a different view, basically saying that anybody who isn't happy that you are being married shouldn't be there. One moderate approach is to give people a second chance by inviting them to the wedding, but to make it clear that you don't want to hear another word of criticism or negativity of your life. A more extreme approach is to choose not to invite anybody who previously proved to be critical or unsupportive.
If you don't take a position on the extremes (either inviting everybody, or not inviting anyone who was previously unsupportive), you will wind up with some difficult decision to make.
Ultimately, ask yourself how you would feel if you walk down the aisle and you see that person standing there? Would you be glad and grateful that they are a part of this amazing experience? Or would your stomach sink because of what you expect they will say or do? At the end of the day, this is your special day, and you deserve to be happy, so keep that in mind when dealing with unsupportive relatives.