Going Rogue? Ideas for That Perfect "Alternative" Weddingby Liz Gatherer
As soon as you get engaged, thoughts immediately go to choosing every little component of the big day. When we are considering the magnitude of the big day itself, naturally we want it to be as close to our tastes as possible. But sometimes, there are people around you pushing for more “traditional” weddings with “traditional” features. However, you need to celebrate your uniqueness. An alternative wedding is not something that should seem different but needs to fit you like a glove. But where do you begin to create an alternative wedding?
The wedding party
The opportunity to experiment with the bridal party is something you can completely have fun with. The idea of the bridal party has been completely revamped over the last few years. As many couples are turning away from the norm, you can incorporate a wide variety of ideas. The bridal party doesn't have to just be the close friends of the bride. You could have best women rather than best men, and if there's a cat in your life and you want them to be involved in the big day, do it!
Wedition hot tip: introduce your wedding party to your guests in Wedition, a personalised wedding magazine, and whether your cat is your ring bearer or not, they can still be involved in your big day as they can 'write' and article for you within your Wedition, see more ways to involve your pet at your wedding in our article Making Your Pet a Memorable Part of your Wedding Day.
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The fact of the matter is that you don't necessarily need to wear a dress in the traditional sense. Naturally, our minds go to the idea of the big white gown. But there are a wide variety of alternative wedding dresses to suit a whole manner of styles and tastes. As far as wedding attire is concerned, you can wear whatever you want! Even if you like the idea of a traditional white gown, you can personalise it to incorporate accessories like veils, jackets, and even capes! And that’s not to say the grooms need to stick to traditional black tie either. Make swaps to incorporate a wide variety of fabrics and patterns, and if you like a clash of colour, go for it!
Photo credit: BeUnveiled Photography. Groomswear: Dapper. Groom's accessories: Dapper & Suave. Venue: Wotton House.
Finding a unique venue
When you are on the hunt for a venue, something may look unique, but then you need to see if they are able to hold a ceremony. You need to remember that if you're looking for a public place to get married, you need to contact the local authority to see if they are able to accommodate. But you can bypass this by having a Humanist ceremony. A Humanist celebrant is a great way for you to get married wherever you want, without any of the tradition. The great thing about Humanist ceremonies is that they are more about the person. There has been a massive spike in Humanist ceremonies, and it’s easy to see why! It gives you more options and is a perfect way for you to choose the ceremony that suits your beliefs.
Choosing a photographer that suits your style
Wedding photos are going to last forever, so you need to choose a wedding photographer that suits your style. Embracing an alternative wedding means that you may not want too many staged shots. You can find plenty of alternative wedding photographers that don't just provide posed fixtures but go for contemporary styles, such as documentary and reportage shots.
The choice of entertainment
It is an ideal way for you to inject your personality into the big day and for people to get into the swing of things! Of course, they're always people that may seem a little bit reticent to let their hair down in an alternative wedding, especially if your entertainment is a metal band, but there is something out there for everybody. The right entertainment can be incredibly fun, but it doesn't have to just stick to the traditional, of course. Do whatever tickles your fancy. From glitter face paint to magicians and the traditional wedding music, nothing is off-limits!
Real Wedition weddings: Founder and director of Wedition, Liz, had a giant colouring in canvas on her wedding day!
Planning a wedding can become complex when you start to choose the types of food. Putting together a table plan and deciding on food that pleases the entire guest list is pretty overwhelming. But this is where you can get into catering options. It is the perfect way for you to have whatever you want but also takes the pressure from the traditional sit-down meal setup. The added benefit with this is you don't have to think about seating plans, and can be as informal as you want. Rather than the traditional table plans, think about blankets on the grass, wooden benches, or even straw bales. Catering where you can serve yourself, or hog roasts and barbecues really add to that informal feel.
Real Wedition weddings: H&E choose to have a carvery served for their wedding catering option, on each table a nominated person had a personalised apron and had the honour of carving the meat. As well as the guests joining in on the fun, there was a butler in the buff who helped serve the wedding feast!
The time of the ceremony
You can get married at whatever time you want. You don't have to get it done in a church at 10:30 on the dot, but if you want to get married at 2 o’clock in the afternoon, it's entirely up to you. And the ceremony doesn't have to be as long as the Lord of the Rings trilogy either! You don't need to stick to set times at all. You can get the ceremony done in the space of half an hour, do the speeches right afterwards so everybody has the time to party!
Do you have to create a bouquet?
You don’t need a bouquet at all, but you can get rid of the traditional bridal bouquet and replace it with something a bit more you. If you have a severe allergy to pollen, the traditional bouquet may bring out the worst in you! Instead, opt for something far more unique. Your bouquet can be made of paper, or you could even go for candy floss!
Real Wedition weddings: Wedition couple L&K married in "The Lantern Hall" at Farnham Castle so it only seemed fitting that their bridesmaids carry lanterns rather than bouquets!
The great thing about an alternative ceremony is that it doesn't stick to the traditions that we come to expect at weddings. Whatever you want, try to accommodate it. It is important to remember that when we're trying to plan the perfect day, we may feel we've got to please some great aunt we haven't seen for a long time, but the bulk of the day is to do with you and your significant other. Never lose sight of this.