How To Have A Feminist Wedding

by BUST Magazine


How To Have A Feminist Wedding

Think that feminism and marriage make an unlikely pairing? Think again. Sure, marriage has historically functioned as a transfer of female property between men, and Emma Goldman once implied that a wife is just a glorified prostitute. But while some feminists would like to see rights and privileges disassociated from the institution of marriage altogether, plenty of others choose to tie the knot on their own terms. Unfortunately, the wedding industry still reinforces the status quo: that weddings should be expensive, stressful, public celebrations of a woman’s worthiness. But luckily, there are a growing number of nontraditional, feminist wedding resources out there to thwart the Pinterest-driven frenzy of His & Hers accessories, mason jars, and diet tips.

Catalyst Wedding Magazine, a print wedding magazine “with a feminist consciousness,” launched in 2015. In the “Editors’ Letter,” they write, “The wedding industry is a stubborn curmudgeon resistant to social and political change—in rights, representation, and roles,” hence the creation of a publication that highlights diverse couples and offers sassy commentary on problematic wedding expectations and traditions.

Catalyst is reflective of a broader trend of creative, young entrepreneurs and artists who are finding outlets in the wedding world. Dawn Mauberret, the co-founder of Toasted, an indie bridal trade show based in Brooklyn, says, “As we entered into what can often be a very weird and massive world of wedding craziness, we were surprised to actually find a strong feminist community within the indie bridal market.” Of the vendors who participate in Toasted, 95 percent are businesses run by women.

Offbeat Bride is a popular resource for “couples who dare to walk off the beaten aisle.” The site publishes articles ranging from “Why You Should Propose to Your Boyfriend” to “Wedding Invitation Wording that Won’t Make You Barf,” in addition to showcasing all the Star Wars and dinosaur-themed weddings a person could imagine.

There’s also Love Inc., whose latest cover shoot features model Dylan Stephens in a variety of wedding gowns and suits. And if you prefer to philosophize while cake tasting, A Practical Wedding ( posts insightful critical essays and practical how-to guides for same-sex, hetero, and polyamorous folks looking to have a laid-back celebration of love. 


Article by Liz Susong

Illustration By Ann Shen

This article originally appeared in the Aug/Sept 2015 print edition of BUST Magazine. Subscribe today

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Founded in 1993, BUST is the inclusive feminist lifestyle trailblazer offering a unique mix of humor, female-focused entertainment, uncensored personal stories, and candid reporting that tells the truth about women’s lives.

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