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Yes, the institution of marriage is a traditionally patriarchal one. The father is supposed to give his bride away to her new person? Yuck. Marriage is supposed to be the act of entering a partnership, not the act of getting acquired by a new owner. (Which of course is a stretch, but c’mon, it’s 2018!) If you’re looking to make your wedding feminist AF, we’ve got you covered. Feminist weddings are the new black, in our book.
As with all terms and groups, feminism can resemble a lot of different things to a lot of different people. This list is just a sampling of different ideas to make your big day a little less, “women are property” and a little more, “women can do what they want!” Here are six alternatives to traditional wedding customs that with make your wedding a feminist affair.
1. Have Both Parents Walk You Down The Aisle
Or walk yourself down the aisle. The tradition of a father giving away his bride, while sweet, is dated, and sometimes even a little bit creepy to think about. Women are also capable of being the providers of a family, and your mom might even have been the provider of the family you grew up in. Whether both of your parents are still living, you have a nontraditional family structure, or you just want to switch things up, consider having someone else walk you down the aisle.
2. Wear A Dress That’s Not White
While most brides do not wear white for any specific reason other than tradition (and the fact that white dresses look super ethereal and beautiful), the Western tradition of wearing white on one’s wedding day comes from the idea of a bride as “virginal.” Wear what you want! Yes, even hot pink.
3. Pay For The Wedding Yourselves
Though you might not love to hear this one if you’re about to plan a wedding, there’s no need for the bride’s parents to foot the reception bill in 2018. If you really think about it, the old tradition feels a bit like a dowry, or payment, to the groom for marrying her. No thank you! Families should feel like they can split the cost of the wedding, or the couple can pay for it themselves.
4. Steer Clear Of Any “Lady-Tax”
Bridesmaids typically pay for their dresses and their hair and makeup, while grooms only pay for their tux rentals. Keep things equal by paying for your bridesmaids hair and makeup, one, because it’s a nice thing to do, and two, because it’s not asking them to pay for more services just because they are women.
5. Say No Way To Tossing The Bouquet
Ugh, the idea that only women who want to settle down and get married are valuable is archaic. Skip this step, or have all the men at the wedding get on the dance floor instead.
6. Give Plus-Ones To People Who Aren’t Married
Another way to show that while you appreciate the sanctity of marriage, you don’t believe that you need to get married in order to be a valued human, is to give your close friends plus-ones, even if they aren’t engaged or living together yet. Most of them won’t take you up on it unless they’re serious with someone, so extend the gesture if you can.
Written by: Kimmy Foskett