12 Ideas to Consider Before You Host (or Attend) a Wedding
Did you get engaged over the holidays? According to a national survey, December is the month most popular for popping the question. Ready to plan the big day? Millennials have been amending traditions for years, say Rachel Testerman and Katelyn Patrick of Grace Winery, a 35 acre winery nestled into Pennsylvania’s Brandywine Valley. Testerman, Grace’s assistant general manager, and Patrick, its event manager, said that while some traditions are timeless, some have been tweaked and others kiboshed entirely.
What’s in and what’s out? Here is Grace’s Top 12 list for 2022.
Out: “Here Comes The Bride”
To make the most of their aisle time, couples opt for songs that have special meaning to them. While the songs are almost always instrumental, they can be from any genre, Patrick said. The most popular choice: Christina Perri’s “A Thousand Years” from the Twilight movies.
In: Friends as officiants
At Grace Winery, many ceremonies are conducted by friends who got ordained online, Testerman explained. The personal touch adds a great deal to the wedding vows.
Given that 10 minutes is the average duration of a wedding ceremony at Grace, there’s no need to spend money or paper on printed programs, Testerman said.
In: Big bouquets
Filled with flowers, foliage and color, bouquets are now statement pieces. When it comes to the bride’s bouquet, bigger is better, Testerman said. Often, bouquets are so gorgeous that they get repurposed and used during the reception.
Out: Bouquet toss
Although it was established to bestow good luck on the women, most people consider the tradition outdated. These days, brides don’t want to embarrass their single friends by asking them to gather in a big group, Patrick said.
Out: Garter toss
Out: Cake cutting ceremony
Most weddings don’t have cake cuttings … because they don’t have cakes. Cupcakes and donuts have replaced traditional, tiered wedding cakes, which are expensive and often go uneaten, Testerman said. Most wedding couples put that money elsewhere in the ceremony, or save it for something else.
In: First dances
This one is a keeper, Testerman said, and couples love picking out “their” song and the one that will play while they dance with their parents.
Out: Wrapped gifts
These days, people get notifications from their online registries as soon as presents are purchased. So, while they are grateful for the gifts, there’s not much surprise left in the process. Most couples save time (and wrapping paper) by displaying unwrapped shower gifts on a table, Patrick explained.
In: Card boxes are the new wedding bags.
Wedding bags – the white, drawstring satchels in which brides used to collect cards (and checks) – have been replaced with decorative but discreet boxes stationed at the front of the reception room.
Photo by Kelly Giarriocco at Grace Winery.
In: Toasts and speeches
Maids of honor and best men still speak at receptions. But instead of going from table to table to thank guests, the couple typically gives one speech expressing their gratitude.
In: Creative wedding favors
Succulents as favors? Yes. Plants are just one example of creative – and useful – favors that modern couples are using. At Grace, wine related favors like bottle stoppers, personalized bottles and glasses are popular. Late night snack packs are great, too, Testerman says. To-go donuts and soft pretzels are great, sweet treats.
Trends aside, every wedding is unique because it is a reflection of the couple and their families, Testerman explained. “Personalizing weddings is itself a huge change,” she said. “Instead of following customs just because they are customs, people create weddings that reflect their own beliefs and relationships. That can be beautiful to witness.”
Please visit Grace Winery for more information and inspiration about weddings and other special events.