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wedding bouquet
Photo: Anggulo Studios

Getting married comes with certain expectations. The occasion has long been associated with specific ways of doing things, depending of course on where you are or your religious and/or social affiliations.

I have been writing about weddings for almost a decade now, so I am very familiar with many of them. They are so common that to some extent, they seem like “rules” that can’t be broken.

But if there’s one thing I also learned while writing about weddings, it’s the fact that you can defy expectations, especially if you and your spouse-to-be are paying for everything.

Now, let me share with you the “rules” I broke on my wedding day.

Getting married in a white dress

White dresses do not really appeal to me. They are hard to manage, I feel naked in them for some reason.

And because I know wearing a white wedding dress is only a common practice because the color symbolizes “purity,” a concept I don’t care about at all, I just opted to get married in a pink dress.

I got mine from Tayo Studio, and I loved everything about it. Made from high-quality linen, the dress was so comfortable to wear. It was also very flattering, which was a huge plus, considering how hard it is to find a plus-size dress.

Inviting family members to the ceremony

Sure, micro weddings have been huge lately that it no longer surprises people when couples don’t invite them to their weddings. However, it is still expected for pairs to at least have their immediate families at the ceremony.

Despite that, we still chose to get married with only two friends around. Basically, just the two witnesses needed to sign the papers. It was originally my idea, and I am glad Tim agreed to it as well. It turned out that we both wanted things to be as candid as possible, and we somehow got an inkling that having our families at the ceremony would somehow keep us from being our true selves while saying “I do.”

And, we made the right decision. Our ceremony, which took place inside the small office of the civil wedding management company we booked, was so raw and sincere, and we enjoyed every second of it. We cried and laugh a lot and said the things we wanted to say without being conscious of how our parents and siblings would react.

Having a program at the reception

One of the many things Tim and I have in common is the lack of interest in things that would just draw too much attention to us. We’re both very awkward people, too, so the idea of having a program at the wedding reception really made us cringe.

So, while planning our wedding, I had this brilliant idea: What if we just have a simple gathering where people can have a nice meal together and freely mingle with one another afterward? Yeah, just like any other family gathering during which titas can gossip with one another in true Marites fashion.

Tim liked the idea as well, so we made it happen. Besides not having to sit at a table in front of all our guests, we also skipped the first dance and the cake-cutting ceremony. We didn’t have speeches, either!

However, we had to stage a cake-cutting ceremony just for pictures’ sake. It was suggested by the photographer, and we just agreed to it. It was just so quick, and we did it while people were busy with other things, so no big deal.

Asking for material gifts

It’s not because we’re full of pride, I swear. It’s just that we know material wedding gifts usually come in form of household items, which we don’t have a need for anymore. Why? Because Tim and I have been living together for years now, so we’re pretty much okay in that department.

Plus, Tim and I have a unique take on gift-giving. We both believe that surprising someone with a material gift can be impractical because that person may not need or like the item at all that it can simply end up as clutter. So, what we do when there are important occasions is we ask each other what we need and/or want. That way, we can ensure nothing is going to be wasted.

However, we’re also aware that relatives may not necessarily believe in the same thing. We know they mean well, but they may end up giving us objects we can’t use at all. To avoid this, I told Tim that we should tell our families in advance that they should not bring material gifts.

We’re so glad everyone got the memo, so we didn’t get any wrapped gifts on our big day. Instead, some of them simply gave us cash, and we thought it was really practical because it could help us cover some wedding expenses.

About Post Author

Mina Deocareza

I'm a writer, editor, and content specialist. I currently live in Makati City, Philippines, with my husband, Tim, and our two adorable cats, Dubu and Kimchi.
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