If you think that weddings are all about the bride and groom, then you haven't tried planning a wedding. If that was true, then the planning process wouldn't be rife with discussions, arguments, and family/friendship-altering decisions. But that's not a bad thing.
A wedding revolves around the bride and groom, and they care about their loved ones who have supported them through the lows and highs of a relationship and will continue to do so. Naturally, couples want a wedding that meets their personal desires and is a memorable party for their guests.
As someone who has been to a variety of weddings and in the throes of planning one, I'm in the perfect position to speak for the masses about what we want and don't want to see at a wedding. There's no way anyone feels differently than I do about the following:
1. Love - Personal VowsGiphy
The dating world has been overcome with swiping, lewd pics, and group dates as traditionally romantic gestures such as flowers and an intimate dinner have taken a back seat. The world needs romance, and it can be found in personal vows. Hearing about the unique love shared between the bride and groom is sure to bring a tear to every eye.
2. Don't Love - Long CeremoniesGiphy
We are not a patient generation. I'm not an expert, but it's safe to say our attention span, as a whole, is about 2 minutes long. Guests are there to witness a beautiful union, but they are really there to get drunk, eat, and dance – and I wouldn't test their patience during a long ceremony. From the beginning of the ceremony (walking down the aisle) to the conclusion (kiss the bride), keep it around 20 minutes. 30 tops. Any more and nobody cares. We are a fickle crowd.
3. Love - Ceremony, Reception, and Lodging in One LocationGiphy
I'm lazy. I think we all are. Does anyone want to go to a ceremony, then get in an Uber for 20 minutes to get to the reception, then get an uber back to your house, hotel, car, or whatever at the end of the night? That's a negative. The best weddings are the ones that are all-inclusive. Sure, walking a block or two is cool, but let's avoid completely separate locations.
4. Don't Love - A Selfish OfficiantGiphy
Holy mackerel, I can't stand this one. First of all, we are there to celebrate friends/family that are getting married, not to hear about how the officiant knows them or why Jesus is important. I don't want to hear your bad jokes, your familiarity with them, why they chose you, or your never-ending prayers. I want to hear the officiant speak about the bride and groom's love, their relationship, what makes them unique in this world, and celebrate their strength. Officiants shouldn't say "I" until they pronounce them Husband and Wife.
5. Love - DancingGiphy
Obviously. This will be discussed further down, but dancing is a blast when given a proper amount of time to boogie. Sometimes, the dance-portion of the evening can be stilted and we never can really get down they way we need to.
6. Don't Love - Frequent Stops in DancingGiphy
Per the last observation, a wedding has to let us get funky. By the time dancing occurs, we have quite a few people liquored up, and there's always a family member or friend that stops the dancing to give a gut-wrenching speech. Or the DJ keeps pausing the dancing for a stupid game. Or it's cake-cutting time. The point is, we like to see a wedding that is organized and has time carved out for at least 2 hours of uninterrupted bump'n'grind.
7. Don't Love - A Selfish DJGiphy
They suck, they suck, they are suck incarnate. They suck harder than a selfish officiant. There are DJs out there that don't realize they are a wedding DJ and think it's time to freestyle the mixing, explore outside the 90's and 2000's playlist, and use the microphone to add their own voice. If you are a wedding DJ, then all you do is make the appropriate announcements, play solid music, and occasionally get people clapping. You are one miniscule step away from being replaced by a well-seasoned Pandora – get it together.
8. Love - Personal Moment with Bride and GroomGiphy
This one is particularly important to me as a guest, but I also understand if it can't happen. There is something truly special about getting a personal moment with the newlyweds. It's a reminder of why you're there – to support them in this special moment, and they wanted to share it with you. The reception is a blur for the bride and groom, but those who walk around and thank the guests really go the extra mile.
9. Love - Open BarGiphy
10. Don't Love - Long Table Rehearsal DinnerGiphy
This is definitely a personal thing. I can't stand birthdays, family events, friend groups, or anything involving eating at a long table. First of all, I rarely get to sit next to those I know or those I want to get to know. It feels like we all end up next to people we're not trying to meet. Yes, this is a great moment for people to get to know one another, but we aren't children that have to be squished together. I don't want to make a new connection with someone while battling with my spaghetti and trying to get dinner drunk to deal with the awkwardness. Put standing circular tables out with an open bar and dank hors d'oeuvre, and allow people to organically meet'n'greet.
To be honest, the last one does apply to weddings, but I just really wanted to get my feelings out there about 10 person 1-table evenings. They are like a selfish officiant and a selfish DJ made love and produced an awkward evening.