The following post is by staff writer Melissa Batai
A mere decade or two ago, the most a couple would stray from wedding tradition to walk on the wild side was to smash the wedding cake in one another’s faces. However, as the price of weddings increases, from $15,208 in 1990 (Sell the Bride) to $27,012 in 2011, (The Knot) so too, seemingly, does the desire to buck tradition.
A recent trend now is to have everyone in the wedding party practice a choreographed dance for weeks before the wedding. Then, during the reception, they bust out into a dance and surprise the wedding guests. Even better is if the event is recorded, loaded to You Tube, and goes viral.
Trashing the Dress
A relatively new trend is trashing the dress. After the big day, a bride sets out with a photographer to “trash the dress.” She might have pictures of her wearing the dress and going into a lagoon, or she might get splattered in paint and trash the dress that way.
One bride said of the trend, “I’m not going to wear it again, right? You get married,, and you’re done with the dress. So, it’s gonna hang in my closet? Let’s wear it again and do something cool” (CBS News).
An even edgier trend of trashing the dress is to set the dress on fire–while the bride is wearing it. ABC News recently featured a story where the photographer had flammable liquid poured on the dress and then set it on fire. The bride ran into the water just in time to put out the flames. One might correctly assume she was very lucky to not get injured.
Do You Get It?
I’ll be honest; I just don’t get it. A wedding is one day that signifies the start of your married life together. I understand not wanting to be forced to conform to age old traditions that don’t have much meaning any more. (Did you know the original role of a best man, centuries ago, was to protect the bride and help the groom in case someone came to steal the bride away? Yeah, not much need for that tradition anymore.)
However, many of these trends disturb me on a deeper level. They’re not just about bringing your own personality to the wedding and making the day your own. They seem to be more about finding the best way to get attention–viral attention with a crazy, choreographed dance or national media attention with a burning dress that almost catches the bride on fire.
No joke, being married is hard. You have to merge two people’s beliefs, way of living, handling money, etc. Having a strong, solid marriage is hard work.
The wedding is only one day in a lifetime of days together. Often it seems now people forget that. All their attention is on the day–how elaborate they can make their wedding and what gimmick they can use to get the most attention.
Editor’s note: please don’t do anything crazy like the burning dress, it seems like such a bad, dangerous idea!
My Questions for You
Do you get these new wedding trends? Do you think they’re a fun way to celebrate the beginning of a marriage, or do you think the antics are going too far?