tips for a second wedding
this article originally appeared in CHI thee WED, where lisa kathan is a regularly featured writer
Frequently when couples hire me to photograph their second weddings, they feel apologetic for their wedding decisions. They explain their wedding is not “traditional,” they’re not inviting everyone they know, and if their children are older, they don’t want to compete with recent or upcoming weddings of their children.
As a photographer who’s been asked to captures weddings of couples from their 20s to their 70s, partners of all ages are feeling much more free to make their own unique wedding choices! Here's a few tips I found helpful those couples getting married for the second (or even first!) time:
No more rules
If your previous marriage was more than a few years ago, the first thing to know is that there are no more rules! Gone are the days when you must wear white, you must marry in a church, and you must invite certain guests.
By this point in your life, you probably have a clearer idea of what you like, so don't apologize to anyone for doing what you want. In fact, doing what you want when it comes to your wedding, is pretty much the number one rule for couples of any age!
Your Wedding is a Celebration of Life and Love
If you're lucky enough to have found love a second time, you know how special this tip is. Make your wedding day about who you love and care about the most, and those who have walked alongside you through the ups and downs of your life.
Forget the traditions of old, like greeting lines, bouquet tosses and monogrammed napkins, and focus doing the people and things that make you two the happiest. Consider something unique that feel will capture your personalities! Think of a ceremony and party on the rooftop of your favorite restaurant; a tiny ceremony with just your families and dinner in your private backyard under the stars; or going all out to celebrate at the chicest hotel with your dearest of friends and family.
Make Your Guest List Special
If you make your wedding a smaller, intimate affair, you can mingle with all of your guests. In fact, this is a great opportunity to be very sincere about with whom you want to be creating your wedding memories. Unlike when you may have gotten married the first time, you don't have invite your dad's co-workers and your mom's best friends from high school. You can invite whoever you want, no apologies.
Wear What Makes You Feel Amazing
What's most fantastic about modern wedding attire is that there are sizes, cuts, colors and fits for just about anyone. Just because your kids are old enough to be getting married, doesn't mean you have to wear a dowdy dress or a rental tux to your own wedding!
Chicago has some fabulous salons that specialize in carrying independent designers, and often cater to the non-traditional bride. Check out some of the beautiful Chicago area salons and find a dress that's perfectly you.
Grooms, consider hiring a groom stylist, like Grant GPS, who can direct you to the perfect custom suit. You deserve a suit that accentuates your charm, and that you'll wear again and again.
Spend Your Money On Memories
Let's face it: weddings can be costly. But there are a few things you can do to scale back and still have a beautiful day. Spend your money on creating memories, and not on all the little things that no one will remember a few weeks later.
Last summer we attended an intimate backyard wedding at the home of a couple who turned their yard into a cool cocktail party room, with an incredible jazz band, and chic seating. It was one of the most memorable weddings I've attended as a photographer, and I could tell it was a wedding the guests would remember for a long time.
And don't forget to capture all those memories! Hire an experienced professional photographer that's passionate about the kind of wedding you're having, and you'll have beautiful images for your families to keep forever.