5 Tips for Planning your LGBTQ+ Wedding
Hurray – you’ve put a ring on it! Now the fun begins. Planning an LGBTQ+ wedding can be a little trickier than planning a cis straight wedding at times, but the wedding industry is becoming more and more inclusive every day and it is possible to plan your dream day without compromising on what matters to you.
Here are 5 tips to get you started.
1.Take inspiration from everywhere
Whilst too much social media can be a bad thing when wedding planning, it’s a great starting point for seeing what’s possible and identifying what you like. In the early stages of wedding planning, treat all weddings as inspiration – not just LGBTQ+ weddings, or weddings of people in your area or from your culture. We live in a wonderfully diverse country, and it can be exciting to see elements from all sorts of weddings that ignites a little flame inside you and gets you thinking “Oooh we could do something like that”.
There is no set way to have an ‘LGBTQ+’ wedding so don’t feel restricted by your gender identity or sexuality.
2. Be the change you can’t see
If, when searching for inspiration, you become frustrated by a lack of representation of couples who look and identify like you, try not to be downhearted. Just because you can’t see visual evidence of your idea, and it appears that nobody has done it a specific way before doesn’t mean it cannot be done.
As much as the wedding industry is making progress, we still need game changers and people who break the mould. Be bold and be brave, compromise should not be an option when it comes to wedding planning.
3. Start by finding just one inclusive supplier (to follow)
From a practical point of view, booking your venue first makes sense as then other suppliers will be able to inform you of their availability on your chosen wedding date. However, before you are even at the stage of booking a venue or any suppliers, seek out just one wedding supplier who is inclusive and whose content resonates with you. Make a note of the advice they share; see what other businesses they engage with, and which businesses support them. You’ll quickly find yourself following a network of like-minded suppliers and have access to a huge range of LGBTQ+ wedding resources. The good old social media algorithms will also start showing you related content.
4. Remember traditions are not rules
We get so caught up with traditions that we forget they are not essential and in no way have to be undertaken. Take a step back and look at each wedding tradition in term and decide if you want it to feature in your day, and how you’d like to adapt it to suit you. Some LGBTQ+ couples find a lot of traditions too restrictive and feel like they are having to conform to heteronormative ways of doing things (see the next tip). However, other queer couples feel passionate about their right to have a traditional wedding, in the same way mainstream society always has.
Either way, make traditions work for you and know you have freedom to embrace some and throw away others. It is not an all or nothing situation.
5.Do not accept heteronormative wedding phrases
LGBTQ+ weddings have now been taking place for over a decade (and civil partnerships even longer) so there’s no reason for heteronormative phrases and terms such as ‘bridal suite’. ‘bride prep to first dance’, or ‘bridal party’. Suppliers who use these phrases may welcome your business and even identify as an inclusive supplier but haven’t really put in the bare minimum of work to understand how language can be alienating and non-inclusive.
Look for suppliers who use inclusive phrases such as ‘couples’, ‘newlyweds’, and ‘wedding party’ and who publicly share their pronouns.
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