Are you stoked about having your nearest and dearest stand next to you on your wedding day, but the matchy-matchy debutante army of identically-dressed friends isn’t your jam? Do you feel kind of weird telling grown people what they should wear? Are you not into the idea of your best pals to have to buy something they will never wear again just because You Said So? And are you annoyed that brides are “supposed” to have only women in their wedding party, and grooms are “supposed” to only have men?
Well guess what! We have some ideas for you.
1. Instead of the same color, go with a color “family”
This is probably the least “fuck you tradition” way to give your wedding party some autonomy around what they wear: give them a family of colors to choose their outfits from.
For folks who are wearing suits, that might be “gray suit,” for folks who are wearing dresses that might be “gray” or “violet to eggplant” or even an actual color palette (we all know Pinterest is lousy with color pallettes). Unless you have a massive wedding party that would make it really obvious if someone strayed too far from the color range, take a deep breath and let your friends do their thing. Micromanaging this process kiiiinda defeats the idea of letting each person pick what color is best for them.
Encouraging your friends to play with textures or patterns within your color scheme is an extra bonus that we’re sure they will appreciate! Last month, we shot a wedding where the bridesmaid theme was “blue florals” and it was AWESOME. You can get a similar effect with suits that have different patterns!
Bonus points: If you want to go super old-school, ask your bridesmaids to wear white! Some sources say that originally the bride and all the bridesmaids wore exactly the same dress and veiled their faces heavily, for the purpose of confusing jealous suitors and evil spirits. You can probably skip the identical dresses thing, but everyone wearing white a pretty badass way to give the middle finger to tradition!
2. Don’t be afraid to mix modern and traditional wear.
These days, weddings are usually a beautiful mix of traditions: some old, some more modern, and some completely unique to you and your boo. There’s no reason that can’t extend to your wedding party. If some folks prefer more traditional outfits and some prefer more modern outfits, let them do them! Your wedding is about blending families (and in some cases, cultures) anyway.
3. Forced single-gender wedding parties are sooooooo over.
If all your besties happen to be one gender, we support you. HOWEVER if you have a sibling or dear friend who isn’t the “right” gender for your wedding party, FUCK. THAT. If they want to stand with you, let them be there. They are wayyyy more important than the gender dichotomy BS that weddings looooove to stir up. This is especially true for men who have close friends who are women, but all the groom-related “shoulds” make it hard to step even slightly outside the masculine ideal of dudes-only friendships. Here are two of our favorite examples of grooms who push back against THAT weirdness:
And one bride who did it, just for good measure: