By Ashley Peters
As you plan your wedding surely you’ve ran into all the trusted traditions and simultaneously all the trends that are clearly the “latest and greatest”. Maybe you’ve felt torn even by all the stimulants, all the options, all the ideas flooding your inspiration boards and planning articles. How can you have it all and balance the aesthetic? How can you check the boxes and stay relevant?
Believe it or not there’s a way to have it all. To have the “dream wedding” and be happy. Want to know? Lean in and listen up. The secret is – do whatever the hell you want!
“Whoa, what?!” You may be thinking. Ultimately to be happy and to have the wedding you’ve dreamed of you need to stay true to you. Which can be challenging as you’re swamped with the newest “hot thing” and simultaneously have others (whether it’s the Industry, family or friends) telling you what you “must” do. It’s unrealistic to please everyone. It’s literally impossible to to please everyone and please yourself. To put that pressure upon yourself if unnecessary and unfulfilling. So instead stay true to what you want and what you love.
Now, I’m not saying all trends or traditions are to be forever banished. I’m sure there are lots (if not the majority) of you who want to incorporate them. And yes there is also the complicated aspect of family input especially across various cultures and if contributing finances are in play. So let’s take a look about how to genuinely balance what resonates with you.
Trends are what’s new and popular. It can become this way due to growing opinion leaning a certain way and due to marketing pushing specific content consistently in our feed which as a consensus makes us “love” that items, aesthetic option more than previously. Take the case of pearls which is trending for 2022. Some people have always loved them but how many of you never really considered them in a certain aspect of your wedding (hair accessory, veil, shoes, etc) but because you’ve seen the imagery so many times that now your feelings have shifted more positively towards them . So should you have pearls (or whatever trend)? Well, that depends. Do you like pearls? Genuinely, that is. If you genuinely like them even if it’s because you saw them in a new light, then sure, if you want to incorporate them you certainly can. But what if you hate pearls or even just moderately dislike? Then don’t! Please don’t feel pressured to force yourself to like something that everyone else is seemingly liking. I advise that when a trend comes across your screen to evaluate whether or not you really like it. Or is it that you want to like it because others (popular opinion, society, advertisers etc) want you to like it. Take what serves you and leave what doesn’t.
Traditions are a way of doing things that have existed for a very long time and are often seen as “the way” to do them whether that be because of social hierarchy, cultural or religious. Some traditions have stay more relevant that others. Some have evolved and some have been dropped because of lack of relevancy or more education about their not-so-great origins. To some traditions or parts of traditions may feel like an important aspect to include but to others it may just not feel like them. Obviously the first suggestions would be to include only the traditions that resonate with you and to not include those that don’t. As mentioned earlier though it can be complicated when family is pushing for traditions and especially if they’re financially contributing. So how can you bridge the gap? Still choose the ones that resonate with you most but if one is a “meh” but you know would make mom happy find a way to make it yours. For instance my husband and I personally chose to have a Unity Sand Ceremony which we wrote the script for instead of a Unity Candle Ceremony because we felt like it was more “us” and was a way for us to sneak in our own vows which our Catholic Church would not have allowed us to write without this sly move. Everyone was happy, wedding funds still contributed and no drama.
Struggling with how to break it to someone that you won’t be doing “X”? Frame it in the sense that it doesn’t resonate with you, fit you, or represent you. Tell them what you’d like to do instead and how it does resonate, fit and represent you. Steer clear of being negative or taking down about the thing you don’t want since this could cause the recipient to become defensive and dig in deeper. Instead speak positively about the thing you do want. When they seem how much you care about it and the reasons behind it then the conversation will be softened so hopefully everyone is happy in the end.
So trends or traditions? Both, neither or a sampling! Create the wedding that YOU want because at the end of the day joy is what matters most. When you feel bogged down take a moment and a breath to reflect on this. You’ll have an amazing day that will authentically represent you.
Ashley Peters is an American based hairstylist, author and business owner. While many of her brides are stateside she is available for destination weddings worldwide. Along with her hair services you can shop personally selected hair accessories, education and hair kits via her website’s shop. She is passionate about animal advocacy, connecting through travel, art and always learning something new. When her hands aren’t in hair you’ll find her on a hiking trail, with a good book or off on a crazy adventure with her husband, pups and soy vanilla latte in hand. Read Ashley’s articles