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The MBA Bride | November 20, 2017

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5 Ways to Build Unique Heritage Wedding

If you’re like me, you’re kind of tired of the typical wedding themes. My suggestion: instead of new and different, go old and different. Robert Fulghum wrote in All I Really to Know I Learned in Kindergarten the following: We take what we know, which isn’t ever the whole story, and we add it to what we wish and need, and stitch it together into some kind of family quilt to wrap up in our mental couch…Memories are creative. There is always the conflicting truth of many witnesses. Always.Next, I drew on a conversation from my MBA branding class last night, where the Professor talked about history vs. heritage. History has hard cold facts with concrete evidence about past events whereas heritage is a bit more creative, connecting evidence with mythical stories about past events. Brands, like Sam Adams, use heritage to create a unique history to associate with the brand.

If Sam Adams can use its heritage to create a easily identifiable brand, Fulghum can write a passage on molding a heritage from memories, a bride should also be able to create a heritage as an interesting way to make her wedding unique. If no one has the same heritage as you do, why not embrace this as a key wedding differentiator?

Use your five sense to implement a unique heritage in your wedding.

  1. Hear. Your grandmother is probably waiting for you to ask her about the traditions of her family. Ask your partner’s great aunt about unique things that stand out in her mind. If you like what they tell you, build it into your wedding.
  2. See. Perhaps the easiest and best way to embrace your or your fiance’s history is to have decorations built around your unique family history. Bring in that huppah, embrace the red gown if your culture calls for it, or showcase the best elements of the city your family is from. Use it in ceremony decor, table settings, or even as a picture display in the lobby of your venue.  
  3. Taste. If there is unique food from your family’s history, be sure to incorporate it. If his mother made killer potato latkahs when he was a child, serve it during the cocktail hour. Pleasing the pallet while also paying homage to your family history will be greatly appreciated and truly unique.
  4. Smell. Is there a particular scent that is in your family’s history? If you’re great grandfather came through Ellis Island and established himself as a baker, have the smell of rising bread or freshly baked cookies infiltrate your venue. Simple scented candles, air fresheners, or freshly baked goods on site can help create the scent of your past.
  5. Touch the heritage. Allowing your guests to take part in a tradition from your past may be a great way for them to touch your heritage. Take the case of the bride and groom in this youtube video who willingly embraced their Greek heritage by making their first dance the Greek Wedding Dance and inviting guests to dance with them. They, too, can touch the history of this great tradition.
Take note of the following:
  • Make sure your guests know why the room smells like baked bread or why you’re wearing a red dress. Leave placards out explaining traditions or include details in your ceremony program. Guests will appreciate you letting them into your wedding secret and ohhhhh and ahhhh at you all night.
  • Don’t forget the hubster. It’s easy to focus on your family alone. If you’re marrying someone from beyond your community and heritage, find ways to blend the traditions. After all, Fulgham and Sam Adams did give us permission to get creative.
Taking these steps will help you to build your unique heritage into the wedding. It may even help you to take something old and turn it into something new. And no bride will be able to match your unique theme.
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