There are so many traditions associated with weddings that it can be overwhelming! With input from Mom, Dad, aunts, uncles and grandparents you might start thinking that you are going to need two full days to get it all in and twice your wedding budget!
This can be especially hard for younger brides and grooms who haven't been to as many weddings to see what some of these traditions look like in practice.
I am here to tell you that while traditions are a big part of almost every wedding day not every tradition is for every couple so don't feel like your day will be ruined if you decide to change or just skip some of these traditions.
I'm not talking about traditions of different cultures or families, but all of the things that can seem expected at a western style wedding in Canada.
Tradition will tell you that you should have one pair of wedding attendants for every 50 guests and that the bride should have a Maid or Matron of Honour and all female bridesmaids while the groom has all men.
This is one wedding rule that I am all for breaking! If you decide that your closest friends and family are all the same sex as you then that's just fine, but to exclude your brother who you have been close with your whole life or for a groom to leave out his female best friend is just wrong in my opinion.
Luckily things have changed and it is completely acceptable to have a bridal party that mixes and matches men on the bride's side and women on the groom's side. Now that it has become less common for wedding couples to require their bridal party to wear the same colour and style of dress or suit (only 38 per cent according to a survey done last year by EventUP. Fun fact!) it makes it easier to have some suits on the bride's side and some dresses on the groom's side. There are lots of great ways to subtly tie the whole bridal party together using colour but still without needing to completely match.
Men wearing suits on the bride's side can use matching ties, socks, and/ or pocket squares to match the colour of the bridesmaids. Women on the groom's side can match their dress or shoes to the guys ties or even wear a suit herself if she wants. (side bar - Awesome podcast from Startup about custom suits for uncommon suit shoppers)
When it comes to matching in the wedding photos, don't worry about it! Any experienced wedding photographer will know how to make any set of people look great no matter how they match or how big or small the wedding party is!
As with anything to do with weddings and wedding traditions there will be many opinions on what you should and shouldn't do, so it can always be helpful to talk to family before. This can avoid surprise for conservative or traditional families that will be confused by this different approach. Just remember that it really just comes down to what you want for your wedding day so don't let traditions get in the way if you don't want to!
Check out some of my favourite Bridesmaid and Groomsmen photos from past weddings. You can see some traditional style bridal parties and some not-so-much!