When we think of a “modern wedding”, a few things come to us straight away: digital communication, normalized inclusion, and a hard push away from tradition. We are somewhat lucky, in this case, to be living in uncertain times - a string of years in which no one knows what is going on - because it opens up a world of endless possibilities.
2022 is an awkward teenage girl with an uncertain future. She is 2001 Brtiney Spears belting out the lyrics to “Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman”. 2022 is not traditional, but has not yet escaped tradition; It is the liberty to be yourself, yet many bigots are still alive and loud (and continuing to pop up in weird, neglected places. Like mold.). For us wedding coordinators, this means our couples have the freedom to do what they want, and we can play with a very wide scope of values and ideas.
1. Digital Communication
Let’s talk about print being dead. Despite what the entertainment industry has been telling us all these years, we wouldn’t call print “dead”. No. We would say that print is burnt out from playing the role of do-it-all-mom and has, therefore, made the difficult decision to delegate some tasks to other, equally qualified, forms of communication.
For those of you who still love paper and mail and stamps, print has your back. Companies like Minted and Zazzle offer a wide variety of layouts for all your wedding needs, and you can almost always find a coupon code or promotion (When using our code “wedplkeevents” on Minted, couples get to work with a designer at no extra charge!).
Paperless Post is another great resource because it gives you an option to personalize your invitation suite, right down to the stamps and liners, at a fraction of the cost! For our diehards, physical shops, like the Paper Store, are where you can experience face-to-face human interactions! I know it is a little bit retro to drive to a store, physically touch products, and breathe the same air as a shop expert, but there is something to be said for getting that 1-1 special attention…if you’re into that kind of thing. Alas, many modern weddings are going digital in nearly every area of planning and celebrating:
Registering for gifts - Websites like Honeyfund have made it easy to create your registry, or purchase items off a registry, right from your device. Plus, it's wildly convenient to be able to register for items from all over the internet in just 1 place. Ten years ago, Honeyfund was edgy. Now, gift registry platforms are moving over to make room for a new, and even more unconventional, modern twist - CASH! Sites like Birdie allow you to straight up ask for what you really need - money. Birdie helps make your need for cash a legitimate registry request; and with so many couples already sharing a home before getting married, it just makes sense!
Announcements - Save the dates and invitations are often digital now thanks to the genius ideas of companies such as Appycouple and Zola. You can use these sites for your registry, too! In fact, you can do it all - announcements, event details, photos, registries, etc. Though these sites truly have it all, we do advise couples to send out at least 1 piece of mail. If you want to be sure every single guest knows about the weddings and website, you have to go old school. We suggest sending out a save the date, along with a link to the wedding website. Yes, email invites and Facebook events are free and commonplace, but remember that 2022 is an awkward teen! Doing your announcements 100% digital could exclude some important guests. We also don’t encourage digital Thank You cards. A thank you email just has a different, less appreciative vibe than a mailed card. I personally put all my thank you cards in the mail, even for those people I could easily hand deliver to. It's just the most thoughtful way!
Ceremonies - Yes. You read it right. A perfect storm of the digital age, combined with COVID-19, combined with a new generation’s overall drive to become a recluse, has introduced a world of virtual gatherings. Including weddings. Sure, you could use Zoom or FaceTime; but now, companies like Love Stream have made it their sole mission to provide full-service live stream weddings. So, I guess just add “production specialist” to your list of required wedding pros. Of course, this isn’t to say face-to-face marriages are out. We can confidently attest to the fact that in-person wedding ceremonies aren’t going anywhere. However, why not have this option for that 2nd cousin in India who can’t attend, for those who test positive last minute, or for those couples who want the best of both worlds - get married privately while getting your family and friends off your back about it.
2. Normalized inclusion. Not only have all kinds of love become more widely accepted, but there has been a huge shift in normalizing LBGQTIAP+, interracial, and intercultural marriages. The entertainment industry’s shift to normalizing all types of love, race, body type, religion, etc, through their marketing and media has greatly impacted both commercial and wedding industries. We are thrilled to say that in 2022 we see a lot more representation in marketing. This means that we are seeing more inclusive ideologies, language, and clothing in weddings and with vendors. Trendsetters like The Suit Shop make suits and tuxedos for every kind of body, and the very popular Jove Meyer Events shouts their inclusive values from the rooftops. At this rate, our future children will not see people in terms of “normal” and “othered”, but simply as a world full of all kinds of people. So, at least 2022 has that going for it.
3. A push away from tradition. It won’t take long to explain that there simply aren’t any rules anymore. Couples do what they want based on who they are (and probably some family pressure). Think of any detail in your wedding planning process, large or small, and you will find that there are now any number of different ways to do it. There is no “right” or “wrong” way to wedding anymore, and we love to see it.
Hopefully, these links and details help you find the best way to modernize your wedding! Leave any additional tips & tricks in the comments below!
The KE team
Photo credit from top to bottom: Lena Mirisola Photography, Rebecca Love Photography, Madison Anne Studios, Sadie Elizabeth Photography, Shawon Davis Photography. Kataram Studios, Scarlet Roots Photography