Theme Weddings: Cool, or Just Corny?

Theme Weddings: Cool, or Just Corny?

Honest Answers from Attendants, Professionals and Guests

Almost every wedding has a theme, be it a classic color palette, an important cultural influence, or a particular season of inspiration. Some weddings though, take the topic to an extreme, with a concentrated concept that can range from the amazing to the appalling. Although these marriages are certainly memorable, are they really a wonderful reflection of the couple’s unique sense of style, or just a creative whim gone terribly wrong? Read on to hear the honest answer from real attendants, professionals and guests.

Wedding Themes Gone Wrong

The fact is, theme weddings can be a real trill – when they are done right, that is. A bit outside of the box, they offer a unique opportunity for the bridal couple to create a custom experience unlike any other wedding that guests may have attended. Even a clever concept though, can turn out painfully corny, particularly when there are errors in its execution. As Sandy Bearden of Columbia, Maryland stated recently, “I think for a theme wedding to be successful, it needs to be ‘the idea of’ or ‘representative of’ the idea or the theme, and not so much of the actual ‘idea.’ For example would a princess really have a cake shaped like a castle? Probably not, she would most likely have a very elegant cake with the pattern of the lace on her dress.”

What a great insight

What a great insight, Sandy, though unfortunately, it looks to have been lost on some brides and grooms. For example, Reverend Bruce Byers of Albuquerque, New Mexico explained, “I’ve done ‘cowboy/western’ weddings that were great, from the bouquet (wild flowers) down to the spurs worn by the groom. And I’ve done a few that seemed to be someone’s idea of 1950’s Roy Rogers mixed with Toy Story, [ones] that had everybody wondering what was up?”

Naturally, this is not the reaction that most couples are seeking, but tragically, it seems to be a trend. At another wedding near Venice, Florida, attendants were befuddled by a paper cutout of a goldfish that the groom wore as a boutonniere. A deteriorating dolphin theme appears to have resulted in a strange mix of striped and multicolored fish, one of which landed on the groom’s lapel. As Avis Shiveler Brangan, Professional Bridal Consultant quipped, “This was not a wedding, this was a six-year-old’s birthday party put together with scissors and construction paper.” Yikes.

Wedding Themes Done Well

All these horror stories aside though, it is possible to have a simply superb theme wedding. The key is to really research and understand the topic, be it the American Revolution, Mardi Gras or even murder mysteries. Then, think about ways to incorporate that detailed knowledge into different aspects of the wedding, from the invitations right down to the specialty drinks. For instance, one inventive couple near Wells, Maine recently rented a local movie theater to fashion their fifties themed nuptials. The bride appeared authentic with period hair, shoes and a short dress complete with petticoat. Their getaway car was a restored classic, and even the groom looked the role. “I thought that it was very nice,” said Frankie R. Keefe, who attended the service. “The work that they had put forth produced something individualized, had special meaning to them and will always be a great memory. That is what really counts for the big day!”

Let the wedding photographer make the memories

When it comes to themes

When it comes to themes, Reverend Bruce Byers thoroughly agrees. “The main thing about a themed wedding is it should be reflective of things that are important to the couple.” In no case was this more clear than in that of an Ohio couple who were recently featured on Chicago’s local news for their football-themed nuptials. Held at an ESPN Zone, the wedding showcased the marriage of a Bears fanatic (the bride) and a Stealers buff (the groom). All the wedding party members wore their favorite team jerseys, with the female attendants in pink. Officiant Michelle Oxman of Evanston, Illinois recalls, “The ceremony included some football references, about playing whatever position was needed, helping the team recover from fumbles, and my favorite: do you willingly give up your status as a free agent and make the welfare of this team your highest priority? Lots of fun.”

Wacky, festive, and even just plain funny, weddings like these prove that themes really can be cool. So, go on, dare to be different and don that Renaissance dress, rock that Hawaiian hula, or spin that roulette wheel. Make your wedding memorable, with a theme that is thoroughly you!

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