Every bride wants her wedding to feel one-of-a-kind, so naturally traditions and trends have to change over time. Wedding traditions considered a must-have a few years ago have transformed into something new or disappeared altogether. Here are some trends that have come and gone over the years.
Favoring sweet favors
Katie Kucharski, sales representative for Avalon Manor in Merrillville (avalonmanor.com), has noticed new favorites when it comes to favors. Years ago, personalized CDs and disposable cameras filled the tables, but now she sees more sweet treats. "Half of the brides are doing candy tables, so that's really popular," she says. Personalized candy bars and favor boxes with candies are also appearing at place settings.
Another thing guests might go home with: a late-night snack. "We've done White Castle a few times recently or pizzas," Kucharski says.
For fancier snacks, a couple might choose to serve finger sandwiches. "It's a little different. We'll put the White Castles on the silver platter in novelty boxes. It's just a cute, fun idea."
The traditional tiered wedding cake has been a standard for decades, but in recent years, brides and grooms have dared to do away with this trend.
Kim Eldridge, owner and designer of Kim Eldridge Special Events Inc. in Chesterton (219.926.1332), has been in the wedding business since 1996 and says cupcakes are booming. "I've had a lot of events in the past two years where they've gone with cupcakes. It's been really different and cool," she says. The bite-sized desserts are extravagantly decorated and can also be more economical, usually costing less than a wedding cake, she says. Couples can also have a small single layer cake for cutting, but serve cupcakes to guests.
Other new desserts also break the cake tradition. Cheesecakes and sweets tables on exquisite displays have also hit the reception scene. "Even a couple years ago, you had to have the wedding cake, and now it's a little different," Eldridge says.
Adding some sparkle
Walking out of church amid handfuls of rice was a staple for past generations, but today couples have found new ways to start their day as husband and wife.
Eldridge says a new popular option is walking out to guests holding giant sparklers. Even during daylight, the light and movement from the sparklers makes for some beautiful and cool photos, she says.
Love beyond Saturday
Weddings on a day other than a Saturday are not as taboo as in the past, Eldridge says, noting Fridays and Sundays are growing in popularity. "Guests are more accepting of it now," she says, and brides are definitely saving money, because halls have fewer events on those days and charge less.
Before the digital camera age, many weddings featured disposable cameras that allowed guests to capture memories of the day. Today, photo memories are still important but have taken on new form. Photo booths are quickly gaining popularity, says Paul Segal, entertainment coordinator for 219 Productions (219.545.4747). His company added a photo booth option in the fall because of customer demand. "Photo booths allow photos of your guests to be taken when they want and how they want," he says. "If the guests want a family photo, a funny photo, a couples photo or more, they now have those options." The photos can then be used for a memory booklet or party favors and are great keepsakes that last after the special day, he says.
Changing the roles
Walking a bride down the aisle isn't just for dads anymore, Eldridge says. Lately, it's the mom and dad walking beside their daughter on her big day. "Before, everyone had traditional roles, and now brides and grooms are recognizing that moms usually have a big input into the wedding. They're recognizing that and saying, 'Hey, mom should walk me down the aisle, too.' You don't just have to have those traditional roles."