3 Big Pieces of Same-Sex Wedding Advice & Etiquette

Gay wedding etiquette

Photo: Corbin Gurkin

June is wedding month in nearly every way! With the highest number of weddings and Pride month occupying the summery days, it's easy to get caught up in all the nuptial details. In doing so, it's also easy to lose sight of the etiquette that comes along with weddings. We consulted Jason Mitchell's book Getting Groomed: The Ultimate Wedding Planner for Gay Grooms for sharp advice on planning and hosting a flawless same-sex wedding. Read on for insightful, wise tips!

What should the officiant say instead of "I now pronounce you husband and wife"?
"Since you are not going to husband and wife, really think about the words you want to hear from your officiant in the pronouncement," Mitchell writes. "It's the last moment of the ceremony. 'Groom and groom?' 'Equally wed?' What exactly are you celebrating that is now official?" Once you decide what it is, either of these options would work well!

How should the first dance go?
Consider your guests, Mitchell advises. "Have you ever watched two men waltz together? It can be beautiful and intimate, or it can also be comical and awkward. I don't want to rain on your parade if you've dreamed of this moment, but do think about what guests you have as an audience. You might want to save that waltz for when the two of you are alone. My husband and I chose to get introduced with all of the guests already on the dance floor with an upbeat song that everyone could groove to."

How should two brides or two grooms dress?
Mitchell's book has specific advice for grooms. "I've seen several looks for gay weddings. I've seen gay grooms who are identical from head to toe, in matching attire but with different accessories, in separate outfits with similar tones, and those who honor a traditional wedding palette by having one groom in black and another in white."

"Your wedding fashion is a chance to let your personalities shine, celebrate both the difference and sameness of the two of you, and further the overall design of your event. Remember, you are the stars of the night, so don't be afraid to go a bit bolder than your normal look. Be wary of options that resemble costumes unless that's a deliberate choice."

As for brides, there are a few ways to go about getting dressed up. One is to go the Ellen Degeneres/Portia de Rossi route and choose a feminine suit and a wedding dress. Another is to wear two dresses — just make sure they're not the same dress if you don't go shopping together! Two sharply tailored suits will also look festive.

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