top of page

10 Wedding Traditions You Can Ditch

Generally speaking, as a country, we love a tradition. I think sometimes it's really nice to stay traditional, and when speaking weddings, there are some lovely traditions that are here to stay. That being said, I think there is also a long list of outdated traditions I think it's time we ditched. Of course, this is only my opinion as a wedding planner and it's important to highlight that you can do whatever you want to do, but I want to make it known that we shouldn't feel pressured to do anything just because history tells us we should. Here are 10 traditions you can consider skipping...

1. Speeches

Traditionally, the speeches are said by the father of the bride, the groom and the best man. Why it's still a thing to have all the men speaking, I don't really know, but I'm seeing more women stepping up to the plate. Why shouldn't the bride have her say? Or the maid of honour? Or one of the mothers? Or anyone in fact that you would REALLY love to give a speech. Choose the people you feel know you the best, will do a good job and be confident enough to deliver it well. BUT be conscious not to let your speeches go over the half an hour limit or your guests will get bored.

2. Matching Bridesmaids Dresses

To my great pleasure, I'm seeing more and more bride squads wearing different style dresses. It never made sense to have a group of women who are all different shapes and sizes in the exact same dress! You're bound to have at least one of your girls feeling uncomfortable in what their wearing. You don't want this part of the wedding to feel like an uphill struggle when none of them can decide on the same design. Instead, choose a colour or colour scheme, and let them choose their own style to suit their bodies and taste. Happy bridesmaids, happy bride.

3. Having a Bride and Groom 'Side'

During the ceremony, it used to be standard practice to have the brides friends and family sat on her side (the left) and the grooms friends and family sat on his side (the right), but this isn't always that simple these days. What if the majority of your friends are mutual friends? You don't want to have to decide who 'belongs' to who. Or if most of your current circle originated from one of you, is the other side going to be empty? Save the headache and leave seating open. I would recommend reserving the front 2 rows of each side for your bridal party and immediate family, and let the rest of your guests seat themselves.

4. Bouquet Toss

On average, bridal bouquet's cost around £100 or more. Do we really want to catapult them towards our single friends and watch them fight over it, damaging the bouquet in the process and preventing you from having it preserved and kept forever?... I think not! You probably want to keep your lovely bouquet in good condition so you can take it home with you. If you DO want to follow through with this tradition, I would recommend using one of the bridesmaids bouquets, or if you would like them to keep these, you can ask your florist to make you a second, cheaper bouquet specifically for this purpose.

5. BridesMEN and GroomsMAIDS

Now of course, we all know that bridesmaids are traditionally a group of women and groomsmen a group of men. It's in the title, but why do they have to be such single sex groups? Can girls not have guy besties and guys not have girl besties? It's a very normal part of life nowadays, so there should be freedom to ask whoever you want to be by your side on the biggest day of your life, no matter their gender. I'm seeing more bridesmen and groomsmaids than ever before and I think it should be welcomed.

6. Giving Wedding Favours

You've sent thousnads of pounds on a day for all of your friends and family to enjoy for FREE! There should be absolutely no expectation of receiving a gift as well. The chances are, they would rather you save the money after everything you've had to fork out, and favours are very often forgotten or thrown away. It's a lovely idea and as always, it's totally your choice, but particularly if you're on a budget, this is not a tradition you need to follow.

7. Having a Guest Book

The pen-to-paper guest book. Sure, it's a nice idea, display an empty book for your friends and family to write you a message in, but surely we can be a little more original than that? I recently wrote an entire blog on guest book alternatives as there are SO many other fun ways your guests can do this. It doesn't need to be so formal. Wouldn't it be better to create an opportunity for something a little more exciting that will more likely make you laugh looking (or listening) back? Make it your own.

8. The Receiving Line

If you don't know what this is, it's when your guests form a VERY long queue for you to greet them one by one towards the beginning of your wedding. To put it frankly, it takes up a lot of time and it's exhausting. Having an individual conversation with 80+ guests within a short space of time can often feel overwhelming for couples and it really shouldn't need to be scheduled into the day. Wouldn't you rather grab a glass of bubbly and say hello to people in your own time? To be fair, I would say this tradition has already died a bit of a death and it's not something couples really do anymore, but if you're considering it or are told it needs to be done, it really really doesn't.

9. Formal Processional Music

I think we can all agree that the bridal chorus is a little outdated now. If it's a piece of music you like then absolutely stick with it, but if it doesn't represent you as a couple or hit you in the feels like an Ed Sheeran song does, then it's really not obligatory. Choose a song that strikes a chord for you both and will really mean something to you when it's time to walk the aisle.

10. Having a Top Table

There are a few different ways you can about a top table. Traditionally, this will consist of the newlyweds, both sets of parents, the best man and the maid of honour. However, times are changing and not everyone wants to sit next to their parents on their wedding day. What you can do is change who is on the top table. Perhaps have your bridesmaids and groomsmen all join you at the top table. Sweetheart tables are also becoming more popular for couples who might just want some time alone together. Or, scrap the top table altogether and sit somewhere within your guests. I personally like to recommend sitting at a central table with all of your closest friends to ensure you giggle your way through the meal.

The bottom line is, no tradition is worth your happiness on the day, so if it doesn't resonate with you... bin it. Other than the legal side around a civil ceremony or any religious rules, there are no wedding police who are going to tell you off for doing things your way. Put you first and make it a truly personal day.


13 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page