Looking Beyond Gender for Modern Wedding Parties

Looking Beyond Gender for Modern Wedding Parties

Couples are increasingly bucking long-established trends to make weddings uniquely their own. One of today's more popular tradition-busting trends is not adhering to gender lines when couples select friends and family members for their wedding parties.

Until recently, the vast majority of wedding couples selected members of the same sex to fill the roles needed for the ceremony and reception. For example, grooms would choose fellow males to serve as their groomsmen while brides choose other females for their bridal parties. The wedding resource The Knot says the days of having men on one side and women on the other are gone. Coed wedding parties enable brides and grooms to have their favorite people by their side, regardless of gender.

According to The Daily Mail, over the past year, weddings across Australia and other areas of the world have seen a rise in "groomswomen" and "bridesmen," blurring the lines of wedding traditions. Couples have often said that choosing whomever they desire to stand beside them during the wedding is more authentic than separating people simply because of gender.

Take for example a groom-to-be who is especially close to his sister. Such siblings may serve as bridesmaids, but grooms may want to have their sisters by their sides on their big day.

Foregoing gender roles may make for a unique, customized wedding. However, it does create the question of what wedding party members will wear. Again, there are no firm rules, but coordination can make for better photos. A woman standing on the groom's side can coordinate with the color of the bridemaids dresses, but wear a different style. Or she can wear a dress that matches the color of the groomsmen's suits. A man standing with the bride can have accessories, such as tie, vest and pocket square, that match bridesmaid dresses.

One of the areas where mixing and matching genders may get a tad sticky is with older, more traditional guests. They may not understand the freedom of choice in the wedding. However, couples can discuss their bridal parties to select people who they think might prefer couples adhere to tradition.

Another possible snag is with bachelorette parties and bachelor parties. A solution to this dilemma may be to simply organize a getaway weekend for the entire bridal party, and not separate parties for each side.

Couples are increasingly deviating from tradition for their weddings by looking beyond gender when picking wedding party members.