Weddings are steeped with tradition and some may just not feel right. Instead, you may be looking for some more non-traditional wedding themes to incorporate into your big day to make it feel more like you. 

As a wedding photographer myself, I’ve seen my fair share of non-traditional weddings and they have been some of the most memorable ones I have been a part of. 

So, if this sounds like this is right up your alley, here are just a few of the non-traditional wedding themes and ideas that can transform your wedding from just okay to unforgettable.  

Non-Traditional Wedding Themes and Ideas 

Pick unique colors 

Two grooms smiling and holding hands in a forest, one dressed in a burgundy suit and the other in a green suit, with autumn leaves in the background

Choosing non-traditional colors is a more subtle way to subvert wedding norms.  Generally, when it comes to weddings, most people will follow certain color palettes that we all associate with love. 

And while these can be great for a lot of people, sometimes you may just want to do something a bit different. Just because it is your wedding,  that doesn’t mean you have to go with pinks, reds, or whites. 

Instead, maybe you make your color palette dark and moody and you and your partner opt to wear black, navy blue, or maroon clothes. Or, maybe you are on more of the colorful side and want to go bright and bold with your palette. 

Honestly, there are no boundaries or limits when it comes to what you can and can’t choose as your wedding colors. This day is for you, so you want to make sure that whatever your choices feel authentic to you. 

You can even get your guests in on it and have them wear colors that match your palette! 

Have an actual theme to your wedding 

Another way to have a more unique wedding is to have an actual theme to your wedding. Now, this doesn’t have to mean that it needs to feel like a 10 year olds birthday party (although it totally can if that is what you and your partner want). 

But, there are ways to have a themed celebration that is both fun and tasteful. For example, let’s say you and your partner love Parks and Rec (because let’s be honest, who doesn’t). You can have a Parks and Rec themed wedding. 

You can have your guests choose which side of the aisle they want to sit on, Eagleton or Pawnee. You can have Snakejuice themed cocktails at your cocktail hour. Your dinner menu can be themed after some of the favorite dishes on the show. 

A theme doesn’t have to feel tacky or cheesy and it doesn’t even have to be super over the top. Even small touches can go a long way and will make your guests stop and smile and have a great time enjoying some of your favorite things! 

Opt for food trucks or vendors over a sit down dinner 

While sit down dinners or buffets are always great, you can opt for something a bit different like food trucks or vendors for your wedding. Now, this one is obviously dependent on your reception venue location and what they will allow. 

But, if you can do this, having a food truck or a couple of trucks come to your reception is such a fun alternative to a sit down dinner and something that will keep everyone talking. You could even opt to have both a sit down dinner and food trucks. 

After you have danced the night away, you can have some vendors come in and serve late night snacks to keep the party going and continue to celebrate with all of your friends and family! 

Include your pets in your wedding 

We all know that our pets are just as important to our families as anyone else so why not include them in your wedding? This is most likely something you will have to decide before you book your venue (because some venues may have restrictions for animals), but this is a great way to make everyone smile. 

Your pet can plan a ton of different roles at your wedding. You can have them greet all your guests as they come in, they can walk you down the aisle, you can have them be the ring bearer. 

However you include them, having your pet at your wedding is something that you will always remember! 

Have a more unique guest book 

I am definitely a fan of guest books! I think they are a great memento and way for you to remember who was with you to celebrate this day. There are some more unique and non-traditional ways to have a guest book at your wedding. 

Instead of just having someone sign their name, you can do something like have a Polariod camera at the entrance where people can take a picture and leave it for you, have them leave you a voice recording saying hi, wishing you well, or giving you advice, or you could even have them write a small note that you and your partner can read during your honeymoon. 

Unique Takes on Wedding Traditions

Do a joint portrait session together  

Two brides embracing near a tranquil water body, one with a tattooed arm

Pre-wedding portrait sessions are becoming more popular and are not only a great way to get some beautiful images, but are also the perfect way to do a test run of your outfit before your big day. 

But, if you want to put a more non-traditional spin on this, you can opt to do the portrait session with your partner. I recently did a joint bridal session and it was just so amazing! 

This is also a great way for you and your partner to get a little bit of time alone to enjoy this time. While it isn’t going to be on your wedding day, it still feels very important and with everything going on during your wedding, you’ll be glad you had some time beforehand to enjoy together and talk about your future!

Get ready together 

Two brides sharing a joyful moment, one in a lace-sleeved wedding gown and the other in a sleeveless dress, with a park setting in the background

Don’t feel like spending a second apart from your partner? Why not get ready together? With more and more people opting to do a first look and not wait until the aisle to see each other for the first time, joint getting ready sessions are also starting to gain momentum. 

Honestly, I think these are so much fun and are a great way to spend the morning of your wedding. After all, you are marrying your best friend and why would you want to be apart from them for so long on this day? 

Now, I will say, you do need to check and make sure there is actually enough room for both of you and all of your wedding parties to get ready together. If your venue has getting ready spaces, you can see if they are big enough for all of you. 

Or you can opt to rent a hotel room or an Airbnb to use instead! 

Walk down the aisle together 

Another great way to have a unique spin on a wedding tradition is to walk down the aisle together. This can also be a great option for anyone who feels like standing up at the end of the aisle alone feels a bit awkward or intimidating. 

By walking down the aisle together, you get to share this once in a lifetime memory together and soak in every moment of this day. You also don’t have to walk down by yourselves. 

You can even have your parents or friends escort both of you down the aisle together to keep up with some traditions while also putting your unique spin on it! 

Do a first look with your family/friends 

Bride in a lace wedding gown smiling widely, with her back towards a person in suspenders, in a bright room with large windows.

Finally, if you don’t want to do a first look with your partner, you can always do a first look with your family or friends. Whether this means doing it with your wedding party, your parents, or those closest to you in your life, these moments can be just as special and memorable as the first time you see your partner! 

Final Thoughts on Non-Traditional Weddings

Hopefully these non-traditional wedding themes and ideas help you and your partner plan a wedding that feels more unique and authentic to you. At the end of the day, this wedding is for you and is celebrating you so you should get to transform the day into whatever you want it to be!

One thing you don’t want to forget, though, is finding the perfect photographer to capture your unique wedding. If you are still looking for that perfect person, I’d love to chat. You can click here to learn more about my wedding photography services or head over here to get in touch

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