5 Traditions You Can Skip, and 5 You Cannot

Mr. and Mrs. signs hang on the back of two wooden chairs at the head table at a wedding reception.

Sometimes there is a fine line between wanting to personalize your event and totally breaking an etiquette rule. Here are 5 traditions you should feel free to omit or personalize, and 5 that are better off staying put.

You can let go of these, if you want:

1. Cake cutting ceremony– If the idea of feeding each other is just not your idea of a good time, skip it. In fact, you don’t even need to serve cake. You can opt for any number of desserts, or even a cheese and fruit plate.

2. Traditional registries– Are you just not a butter dish kind of couple? That’s okay. There are tons of alternative registries out there today, ranging from charities to honeymoons.

3. Bouquet and garter toss– Do you love your friends too much to single them out and line them up? Thank you.

4. Dramatic exit– You have forked over major time and moolah for this party. If you want to be the last ones to leave, by all means. We understand.

5. Large wedding– Many couples want an intimate ceremony with only family and very close friends. You can absolutely invite more people to the reception.


Don’t give up:

1. Thank you notes– And no, tweets don’t count. Even if you hashtag #thank you. Send handwritten notes within 3 months of receiving the gift.

2. Reception for ceremony guests– Want to save yourself the expense of a reception? Elope to Vegas. If you invite your guests to a wedding ceremony, you should also host a reception. Although, for the record, it does not have to be elaborate. A simple party can suffice.

3. Leaving the registry off the invitation– Is it convenient to include there? Yes. But it’s still rude, so just don’t.

4. Greeting your guests– It’s up to you whether you say hello to your peeps via a receiving line or not. But at some point, you should talk with each guest (even if just for a moment).

5. Gifts for your wedding party– These people have been your indentured servants for the better part of a year. The least you can do is buy them a personalized knick knack they will never use again. But seriously, say thank you with a token of your affection.


Photo Credit: Jen Lynne Photography

about the author
Sarah Sarah has been editing the blog at mywedding for four years. She enjoys watching classic movies, spending money on eyeliner that she never wears, and convincing brides to write thank you notes.

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