The Dos and Don’ts of Planning a Same-Sex Wedding
Same-sex weddings are no different to a wedding between a man and a woman. You’re still going to stress about the minor details and worry about rain.
The structure of your day will be the same; there’s a ceremony, a meal, speeches and then a great big party with cake and dancing. But there are a few details that same-sex couples might feel conflicted about.
To help your day run smoothly, we recommend following these dos and don’ts for planning your perfect same-sex wedding.
Do throw tradition out of the window
Wedding tradition dictates that the groom asks the bride’s father for permission and gets down on one knee. Feel free to throw tradition out of the window when you get proposed. And carry this sentiment into your wedding planning.
Modern weddings are made up of lots of old traditions compiled into one day. The first thing to remember when planning your wedding is that you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to. Instead, you can pick and choose the traditions that work for you.
Your wedding is a celebration of your love, so if speeches make your toes curl, don’t include them. And if you want signature cocktails instead of champagne, then we’ve got just the supplier. Harbour And Coupe serve custom cocktails from behind an antique piano – just the thing for a music-loving couple.
Image: Harbour and Coupe, Cocktail - Fig Old Fashioned
Don’t feel like you have to follow a dress code
Couples should never feel they have to fulfil anyone’s expectations of what they will wear. A bride doesn’t have to wear a gown. And a groom doesn’t have to wear a suit. You don’t have to follow a black-tie dress code if it doesn’t suit your style.
Pro tip: If your style tends to be similar, there’s a simple way to avoid walking down the aisle in matching outfits. Choose a friend or family member to keep an eye on your choices and give you a little nudge if you’ve chosen the same thing or something very similar!
Do check that your venue is LGBTQ friendly
A lot has changed since same-sex weddings were legalised in 2014, which has opened up a world of possibilities for choosing your venue. That said, prejudices remain, and you don’t want to have to fight against a venue or feel that you are in any way unwelcome.
All of our venues enthusiastically welcome same-sex couples, and we recommend choosing a venue that is as excited about your union as you are. For a small and intimate wedding, we recommend Hop Farm.
Image: Hop Farm
Don’t stress about any absences
There may be people in your life who aren’t willing to support your decision to marry. Instead of focusing on any absences, focus on your lovely attendees. The people at your wedding are there because they love and support you. As much as it may hurt that some people might not attend your special day, don’t allow this to cast a shadow on your happiness.
The only exception to this would be when someone cannot be there, and it isn’t down to choice. For example, friends and family overseas or an elderly relative unable to travel. In this case, you can invite them to attend virtually using E-There.
Do make your chosen language clear with your registrar or celebrant
Many same-sex couples are uncomfortable with a lot of the language surrounding weddings, so it’s worth discussing with your registrar or celebrant before the ceremony. For example, do you want to be called the brides, the grooms, spouses or partners? Reinforcing the idea that language is important to you will hopefully minimise the risk of anyone saying the wrong thing.
Don’t stick to gender roles
In a straight wedding, a groom will have a best man and groomsmen, and the bride will have a maid of honour and bridesmaids. For a same-sex wedding, it’s time to do away with these gender roles and surround yourself with supportive people who will make your day fun and memorable.
And if you have a shared friend group, don’t feel that your friends have to be on one side or another. This goes for the wedding, and any pre-parties you might have planned, such as a stag/hen do or a bridal shower. For example, you could have a shared wedding shower for the couple rather than a bridal shower.
Do walk down the aisle
Couples who are conflicted about how to walk down the aisle in a same-sex wedding will often compromise by not doing this at all. But couples can easily adapt this tradition to their ceremony. Some couples walk each other down the aisle, and others walk down the aisle with both of their parents. Some choose to walk down the aisle alone.
If you both want to walk down the aisle (so your photographer can capture this special moment), then this is perfectly fine. This also paves the way for a perfect “first look” in a more intimate setting. We recommend Clare Kentish Photography for capturing all these special moments.
Image: Clare Kentish
Don’t make any assumptions
Who pays for the whole thing? This is a delicate conversation to be had with parents on both sides. Tradition dictates that the bride’s family pays for all of the wedding or contributes a significant portion. But with a same-sex wedding, this might not be so clear.
More couples are choosing to pay for their own weddings, sometimes with equal contributions from both parents. Don’t make any assumptions about who will be paying, but be prepared to have a conversation about how this might be managed. Planning a DIY wedding can help to keep costs down.
Do plan an incredible honeymoon
If there is one wedding tradition that everyone should get to enjoy, it’s the honeymoon. Planning a wedding is hard work, and it’s even harder when you don’t have a simple wedding blueprint to copy.
Once you’ve tied the knot, it’s time for some R&R – or maybe it’s time to explore? @luxurylondonguy will help you plan your perfect honeymoon to help you relax and kick off married life in style.
We hope this blog was helpful for you! For more advice and inspiration, to help make your wedding day a unique and memorable occasion, make sure you’re following the Infinite Wedding Co blog regularly. We share helpful insight and inspiration to help make planning your wedding a breeze.
Ping us an email here: firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have any other questions, we’d love to help.
Debbie and Becca x