Should You Have a Theme Wedding or a Traditional Wedding?

star wars wedding

Image source: Cacá Santoro

So, you got the ring, and you’re engaged… now what? I speak from personal experience when I say that it can be hard sometimes to narrow yourself down. What I mean is that when it comes to wedding planning sometimes you have no idea where to start.

There are so many directions you can go! It’s dizzying and exhausting. A good place to start is the overarching theme of your day. So, what will it be fiancé: theme or traditional? You have to decide which type of wedding will best fit you and your partner. If you’ve hit a snag here, here are some questions and insights to help guide you toward taking your first leap into planning.

To Theme or Not to Theme? That Is the Question


Image source: Mason Photography

Do You Love Something Enough?

How much do you love whatever it is you’re thinking about theming? Do you love it enough for it to be a central focus of your big day, for it to be in all your pictures forever? You want to make sure you’re serious enough about this theme idea so that you won’t regret it later. If you really like or even love the thing you’re considering theming, good. You should if it’s going to be such a big part of the day.

Does Your Partner Also Love It?

Don’t forget that your wedding is really about marrying the love of your life and sharing that love with all your friends and family. Theme weddings can get a bit off track — a risk made even worse if your partner doesn’t also share your affinity for whatever it is you want to theme. You want your day to focus on the love you share. Don’t box your partner out with an overwhelming theme that he or she doesn’t even like. If your partner is fully supportive of your theme even though it’s not his or her thing, then you can still go for it; just make sure he or she is really going to be able to live with it. It’s his or her day too.

Will You Regret Your Theme Later?

Don’t be offended, but what if the total obsession you have for whatever it is wears off over time? Without being defensive, really ask yourself if this is a life-long love or a passing phase. Basically you don’t want to look back at your wedding photos later with regrets, wishing you’d done something more traditional and timeless.

Themes Can Be Fun.

Themes can be really awesome. If you’re jazzed about your theme, it will show, and your guests will probably get into it too. There are so many fun little quirks you can work into your day through the theme. Your guests will appreciate the well-thought-out plan, and you will appreciate living your theme-dream.

Themes Allow Everything to Fall Into Place.

A huge benefit of planning a themed wedding is that by nature of choosing a theme, you’ve just narrowed down your harrowing search for wedding-appropriate items. Suddenly every aspect of your wedding has a direction, and that makes planning a lot easier. Plus, there are so many fandoms out there; you will most definitely be able to find themed items. If not, you can always DIY theme-centric accessories.

How Theme-y Should You Go?

Theming a party begs the question: How much theme are you going to pack into your event? Too much and it distracts from the couple, too little and guests will be confused. Are you going to wear a costume or makeup specific to the theme? Are you going to ask guests to dress up too? Is your theme purely about décor? You should ask yourself all these questions and try to picture what your day will really look like. Having a theme unfortunately ads the extra stress of trying to hit a delicate balance, but if you can pull it off, it can be awesome. Make sure if you’re going to have a theme it will at least be noticeable. If you’re going to go all the trouble of incorporating something you love into your special day, you want people to at least notice it’s there.

Traditionally, Traditional Weddings are Traditional

traditional wedding

Traditional Weddings Can Sometimes Be Boring.

The sometimes con of a traditional wedding is it can be hard to make it really unique. If you’re the kind of couple that wants your wedding to stand out, then maybe a theme is the better way to go. I believe every wedding is unique because every couple is special, but traditional can seem a bit cookie cutter to some.

In Traditional Weddings, the Focus Is on You.

The nice thing about a traditional wedding is that the theme is you. There is no theme except the love you and your partner share. Nothing is incorporated into your day that will distract from the ceremony and the two of you getting married. Traditional doesn’t necessarily mean boring or bad; it can be beautiful and elegant, and it leaves room for the couple to be the most interesting and unique aspect of the day.

Where to Start With Traditional Weddings?

Yikes. Traditional kind of encompasses everything. Where do you start? The traditional wedding offers no help to you on your planning journey. You are totally on your own. You have to decide what direction to go in on all fronts: flowers, colors, dresses, food, etc. This poses a bit more of a challenge in pulling off exactly what you’re dreaming of, but with all the wedding sites and ideas out there, you’re not entirely alone.

A Traditional Wedding Looks Like You

Years later when you look at your wedding photos of your traditional wedding, you will look like you. No costume is making you look like the Queen of Hearts. You’re not surrounded by themed accessories you don’t even care for anymore. You’re just a younger you. You look like yourself as does your partner. Think hard about whether it’s important to you to look like your everyday, albeit dressed up, self. If it’s really important to you, traditional is your way to go.

Overall if you’re really into whatever the theme is, the focus can still be on you and your taste. Even if you just really like pumpkins and you use that as your theme, that’s cool because you really like pumpkins and everyone will see your day with you surrounded with what you like. The nice thing about this question is there is a grey area. You can input some of your theme without making your day all about it; you decide how far it will go. As long as you make your day awesome for you and your guests, theme or no theme, your wedding will be great. Decide what you truly want for you and your soon to be spouse. Don’t worry about anyone else. Theme or traditional wedding, as long as you put your heart into it your guests will enjoy themselves too.

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