As a wedding writer, I find that with every new generation, expectations towards what is okay in relationships evolve and transform. Despite being an age-old institution, tying the knot is also affected by change.
To get with the ever-changing times, here are nine wedding taboos that shouldn’t be shunned anymore:
1. The mangagement ring
One of the most exciting parts of being engaged is receiving the engagement ring. However, in recent years, it’s not only the would-be bride that gets to wear something sparkly on her finger.
Enter, the mangagement ring!
According to this article in The Atlantic, a survey by a prominent wedding website indicates that 5% of men are wearing mangagement rings. Although this isn’t a new trend, this small demand indicates that men are beginning to warm to the idea.
Even celebrities are getting in on the action, with Skylar Astin of the Pitch Perfect movies famously rocking one during his engagement to co-star Anna Camp, as well as others the likes of Michael Bublé and Johnny Depp during theirs.
2. Women proposing to men
Did you know that there’s a tradition where women are allowed to propose to men, but only on Leap Day? Leap Day proposals was started by St. Brigid of Kidare, a fifteenth century nun who brokered a deal with St. Patrick to give women the right to propose on that day. However, ever since their inception, woman-led proposals have been deeply problematic. Despite the Leap Day tradition being fairly established – there’s a 2010 Amy Adams movie about it – critics have been harsh on the women who take it up, ridiculing them for being too desperate or overly aggressive.
Nowadays, women who attempt Leap Day proposals are cautioned that proposing would emasculate their partner. The stigma attached to it is still strong, with one poll finding that 83% of couples said that it was the man who proposed.
However, relationships, as with most things, are rarely black and white. Just because the majority still favor the man proposing, it doesn’t mean that that’s what best for you and your partner. What you choose should be up how well you know your partner and how well you know yourself. If you feel like proposing would solve your problems, you should go for it, even if it’s scary. It might be the best decision you ever make!
3. Skipping the white wedding dress
Ever since Queen Victoria wore an iconic white dress for her nuptials, the white wedding dress became one of the most instantly recognizable symbols of the ceremony, symbolizing purity. She also famously decreed that no other lady at her ceremony could wear white, so she was a trendsetter there as well!
However, white is not the only option. For brides who want to add a bit of color to their big day and eschew tradition, you can show a bit of your own personality by wearing something completely different. Don’t worry, you wouldn’t be alone. Plenty of celebrities have worn some stunning colorful wedding dresses. If they can do it, so can you!
4. Fake flowers
Having artificial flowers instead of the real deal used to be a huge no-no for weddings. However, in more recent years, views towards this have shifted. Not only are fake flowers much less expensive, but they are often easier to store and deal with, since you don’t have to worry about them withering or not being in season. You can even keep them after the ceremony for a beautiful reminder of your special day.
If you are thinking of using synthetic flowers, Afloral has some gorgeous wedding flowers for your consideration.
5. Wedding guests in black
Due to its dark tone, black used to be the color of funerals and other somber occasions. However, even though weddings are a happy affair, it’s not unheard of to see guests show up at a wedding in black nowadays. And no, it’s not supposed to be an underhanded statement! Instead, the color connotes elegance, so if you want to look well-put-together, black can be a natural choice.
If you need to attend a wedding soon and you’re struggling with what you should wear, there are much worse transgressions you can make with your sartorial choices. Wearing black should be the least of your problems!
6. Wedding cake substitutes
A signature aspect of the reception is the wedding cake. However, while they are often beautiful to look at, they can also be super expensive. Not only do wedding cakes require large quantities of ingredients, but bakers spend an inordinate amount of time and labor to create it, which only hikes up the cost.
While some couples feel like this is expense is a given, that isn’t always the case. For those who are hoping for something different, there are all kinds of alternatives that could satisfy your guests’ sweet tooth. While some guests might consider the lack of wedding cake a glaring omission, most guests are probably just looking for dessert at the end of their meal, so there’s no need to feel like your wedding is lesser because of it.
7. Rejecting the church wedding
Perhaps because Christianity is the most prominent religion in the United States, churches are often the default image in people’s heads when it comes to wedding venues. However, according to this article in The Atlantic, church weddings decreased by 40% during the years 2000-2012, possibly due to a combination of fewer and fewer and Americans getting married and the significance of Christians to marry in a church gradually wearing off.
For couples searching for a wedding venue, this shift away from church weddings isn’t necessarily anything to cry over. Instead, it frees you up to consider unconventional locales to host your wedding. Want to get married in a castle? Go ahead and do it!
8. Ditching the rice toss
One of the stranger American wedding traditions is throwing rice at the happy couple during the send-off. Originally an ancient Roman tradition for wishing fertility, this tradition has persisted through the ages. This is despite the rice toss being a waste of food and the false rumors that rice is harmful for birds to ingest.
However, times may be changing. Shifting attitudes towards having children while married could make the wishing fertility thing inappropriate. Perhaps this is why many modern couples choose to opt for something a bit different. If you are seeking romantic ideas that also look simply brilliant in pictures, check out these fun rice toss alternatives.
A new trend that is all the rage in 2017 is the idea of the minimoon, a shorter trip that takes place directly after the wedding while you and your partner are waiting to go on your big honeymoon trip. Not only are minimoons less stressful to plan and usually cost less, they give you the relaxation you need after the craziness of the wedding. (Also, delaying your honeymoon has all sorts of hidden benefits, anyways.)
If you want some breathtaking ideas for where to go on your minimoon, check out these beautiful destinations compiled by Travel + Leisure.
What all these erstwhile wedding taboos have in common is that they open up a lot more awesome opportunities for couples planning their wedding. If there’s something new that you want to try, don’t worry about the possible fallout – just try it and have your wedding your way!
Author : Jessica Chen is a wedding enthusiast, writer, and editor at WeddingDresses.com . A romantic at heart, she
enjoys binge-watching *The Mindy Project* when she’s not poring over fun ideas that she can use for her own wedding someday.