The ever-awesome Offbeat Bride wrote a great post this week about Gen-X vs. Millennial wedding attitudes. It really sums up what I also see as a shift over the years from traditional to proudly weird to simply authentic wedding styles. Back in the day, you just did it the way it was done before: standard vows, churchy church, confetti, and tinkling cans behind the Edsel (or Toyota or whatever).
Gen-Xers (yes, I am a proud member of this oft invisible generation) tried to get weird with weddings as a way of saying, "Look at us - we are kooky! Things don't have to be the way they were for our parents!" We rang in the new millennium in bridesmaid dresses and snowshoes. Instead of Psalms, we had readings of lyrics by The Cure. We had gals as groomsmen and, eventually, two brides! We tried to shake the formality out of weddings as a way of making them our own and not just a nod at an outdated institution. But a bit of creative weirdness was usually paramount -- cue the steel drum band processional!
Millennials seem to want something that better approximates their individual view of the world and their place in it. Cool -- I love that! Be yourselves and not just the Instagram and/or hashtag-friendly version of your life that gets lots of social media likes. There may be beards and artisanal pickles, but please take the time to make your ceremony a real expression of yourselves.
Seriously, dig into what actually matters to you. What's meaningful? What makes you say "yessssssss, that's US!" instead of "oh, that would be totally cool and quirky." Trust me. I've seen cool and quirky. It’s fun, but it’s also kinda cringeworthy in hindsight. What promises do you want to make to each other that don’t involve remembering a specific movie line 20 years from now? What stories do you want to share about your relationship that will have friends reminding you of them at dinner in a decade? Think long term here, not in social feed time.
Give yourself a bit of time to think about what will matter to you 15 or 50 years from now when you look back at your day. Think about your scary high school graduation photo and use that as a teachable moment about the future. Really, is that the person you want to present to your future self? Ya, probably not. You can do better than that if you dig a little deeper. Go for it -- it'll be wonderful instead of just weird.
Lemme know what you think.