You Millennials are movers and shakers.
Once in a while you may catch some flak for your out-of-the-ordinary ways, but forget that. Millennials aren't scared to switch up outdated traditions—in fact, you embrace change in everything from the way you shop to what you put in your bodies. Naturally, this also applies to your relationships and marital customs. Why blindly adhere to marriage traditions that date back hundreds of years? Here are seven ways you can easily bring your wedding into the 21st century.
Engaged coupleCourtesy of Clean Origin
Make the decision as a couple.
It takes two to tango, so why have we always left it up to one party to decide when it's the right time to get married? It's not only healthy for your relationship, but also your own personal sanity, to discuss the next step of your relationship as a couple and decide to move forward (or not) together. Once that decision is made, find a local couples counselor and schedule a few appointments to discuss what this means and how you can go into this next chapter as a team. Older generations often frown upon counseling or therapy, as they often see it as a weakness. In fact, it's often quite the opposite. Working on your relationship and growing together is extremely beneficial and will help you prepare for what lies ahead.
Find a modern ring.
The De Beers marketing campaign, "A Diamond Is Forever" debuted over 70 years ago. And yet, couples are still so attached to the idea that a mined diamond is the best route to take when it comes to an engagement ring. But thankfully, more and more millennial couples are doing their research and finding diamond alternatives that are not only more ethical than mined diamonds, but often less expensive.
The best alternative? Lab-created diamonds. If you love the way a diamond looks and still want its durability, but you don't want to chance getting a conflict diamond, then a man-made stone is the way to go. Not only are they 100% ethically sourced, but they can be up to 40% less expensive than their mined counterparts! Peace of mind + saving a pretty penny.
(Courtesy of Clean Origin)
Although the romanticized idea of having the groom's parents pay for the rehearsal dinner and the bride's parents pay for the wedding are great in theory, every couple is different and so is every financial situation. And, since most couples no longer see a bride as property that's being transferred over to a groom, this way of thinking is a bit old-school.
Instead of thinking of costs and "mine" and "yours," think of them as "ours." If your parents are in a place where they can help out with the wedding, great! Combine all the money and resources that you have, and figure out costs together.
Make your day eco-friendly.
Weddings can be really big and therefore produce lots of waste. From the initial save the dates, to the leftover buffet food, there are many ways that you can go green for your wedding day and all the events leading up to it. Here's some ideas:
- Go with recycled stationery
- Have people RSVP via email
- Use reusable silverware, flatware, and cups at all events
- Have carpool options for the big day
- Use potted plants that can be put back in the earth
- Donate all leftover food to a soup kitchen
Ask for donations as gifts.
As the average age of marriage continues to get pushed back further and further, and more couples are living together before an engagement, it's likely that you'll have almost everything you need before your big day. If you've been saving a few big ticket items for your registry, have people put money towards those gifts or even towards your honeymoon. But, if you really have just about everything you need at home, think about those that don't. People tend to be very generous at weddings and giving an option for donations is a great way to spread the love of your wedding far beyond your venue.
Have a food truck.
One of the most expensive parts of any wedding is by far the catering, with some places charging over $100 per person. Not only is this unattainable for many people, but it often puts stress on the guest list and forces couples to put a cap on who they can invite. If you can find a venue that allows outside food, considering something more low key. This is a day of celebration and your food choices should reflect who you are as a couple! If a five-course meal suits you best, then by all means, go all out! But if you're looking for something a bit more casual (like so many millennials are), then a food truck (or two) is a great choice! Not only will there likely be a few more options, but people can go eat when they want, instead of having a formal sit-down dinner that requires tables, chairs, and seating arrangements for every person.
Don't have one at all.
You didn't see this one coming, did you? Now, don't get us wrong, if you've been dreaming of your wedding since you were four and you have five Pinterest boards full of ideas and a wedding planner on speed dial for the moment you get engaged, then have a wedding! But, if you and your partner don't have a desire to have a wedding, or want to pull a Carrie and Big and get hitched a city hall, then you shouldn't feel pressured to do more. This is your relationship, and for some people, living with a domestic partner or have a very intimate ceremony is all they want or need. Do what you feel is best as a couple!