Courtesy of Markus Spiske via

Make It Your Own

Barriers falling, traditions being upended, new ones being formed right before our eyes—it’s all enough to start a blog about! Yes, it’s a brave new world; now we just have to find our way through it. Everyone planning a wedding comes to a point where they have to make a very personal decision, by which I mean a very personalized decision. This can be tough.

Lets face it: few of us have been picturing our big gay wedding since our youth in the way that many straight people do. So when you come to a point where you’re tasked with coloring in your vague concept with very specific choices, you might be at a loss to envision them.

Now here’s the unhelpful part, the advice that you may have already received that, while not incorrect, tends to make these specific decisions worse: “just make it your own!” Right. Pick literally anything. Easy. The only wrong choice is the daunting, infinite paralysis of having no idea (and, if we’re honest, maybe not even caring much about that particular detail).

Sure, if you’re faced with a tradition that doesn’t fit, absolutely take that advice. Ignore everything you don’t like, keep the parts that you do, and put your stamp on it. If it’s not workable at all, ditch it entirely and do something else or nothing at all. This is great advice. But if you’re like me you already know that part. (Let’s be honest—we’re not exactly an ‘unaccustomed to trailblazing’ bunch.) It’s those other times, the times when you really have no idea where to start, that the “do whatever you want” advice misses the point.

Some examples of things you’re particularly expected to synthesize from the ether are: cake toppers, favors, and your vows. These things have traditional examples, but in modern times are prized for their one-of-a-kind nature that really represents you and your partner and no one else. They must be unmistakably you.

Unfortunately, there’s no easy answer if you don’t know what that looks like. You just have to start poring through examples of each—tons of them—and start disqualifying the things you definitely don’t like. If there’s nothing left over that stands out, expand your search. Don’t just go looking for options, keep your target in mind so that when you’re out and about doing something completely different you’ll be open to that moment when the little light goes off in the back of your head—when something actually, unexpectedly seems like it could work.

At the very least, know that you’re not alone. Everyone faces this ambivalence at some point in the planning process. Most of them figure it out in time, and the ones who don’t probably found that they didn’t need it at all. Unless it’s a fiancé, you need one of those. (Or not, what do I know! Just make it your own.)

About the author


The naturally irreverent man-of-many-hats: musician, author, app developer, amateur photographer, and the creator of

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