The rise of the unplugged wedding

by: b.loved

With every moment of our personal lives captured and shared on the internet at a touch of a button, it’s no surprise mobile devices are playing huge role in weddings too. But with distracted guests, less-than-flattering photos and up to the minute sharing of your personal moments, is it time to embrace the ‘unplugged wedding’?
I’m pretty sure you’re using social media to plan your wedding.  You probably announced your engagement on Facebook, before getting addicted to Pinterest (it’s valid research, honest!) and following all your favourite bloggers on Twitter.    As a wedding blogger I’m practically glued to the back of my phone, at events, lunches and even coffee meetings which is great for capturing all the action; but not being a part of it.
In the past couples may have supplied disposable cameras for their guests, but today you can take advantage of the fact that all their guests own a camera phone, allowing your day to be uploaded as it happens.  There have been weddings broadcast on Facetime to overseas relatives, or blogged real-time. Of course there’s nothing wrong with asking your guests to capture your day and share your memories, there’s even some great apps to help you collect all their photos, but is there a danger of all this spoiling your wedding?

1. Whitney Johnson via Eat Sleep Cuddle  // 2. Getty Images Via Huffington Post

Take this example; you’re just about to walk down the aisle.  Your photographer has positioned themselves in that perfect position to capture those tears of joy as you carefully make your way towards your future husband. The shutter clicks, just as Auntie Vera pops her head into the aisle with her camera phone for a quick snap.  The moment’s gone, and your official photo is the back of Auntie Vera’s head. So. Not. Cool.

Amber Wilkie Photography via Bayside Bride

Or during your vows, that cardinal sin. A phone rings. Now I’m not suggesting your guests would have the audacity to answer it, but well, it’s not unheard of.  Not to mention the ones busy uploading their latest snaps to Instagram before you’ve even got to the I Do’s!  That’s the problem with social media, you’re so busy sharing the moment (and remembering #thelongestweddingrelatedhashtagever) that you’re not actually in the moment.  And that’s a real shame for you and your guests.

1. LuRey Photography // 2. LoveKnot Photo

Over the past year, ‘Unplugged Weddings’ have become something of a trend.  Fed up with ruined moments, distracted guests and premature sharing (the photo of your dress on Facebook before your husband sees you in it?!), more and more couples are deciding to ban mobile devices from their weddings.  It makes a lot of sense.  You’re paying a lot of money for your guests to have an amazing experience, from the food, to the entertainment, to all the DIY details you’ve put so much time and effort into, and you want them to enjoy it. For real - not as a memory saved on an iPhone.  You’ve also paid a lot of money for a professional to capture all those important moments for you, and let’s face it a camera phone just isn’t going to do all that detail justice.  I remember being bitterly disappointed at the unofficial photos from my own wedding; they just didn’t capture the magic.

1. Carlie Statsky Via Style Me Pretty // 2.Pinterest

Let your guests know your plans by including a nicely worded insert with your invitations or program or prop a light-hearted sign outside your venue.  You could even ask your officiant to make an announcement, sit back and enjoy the ceremony!  I’m pretty sure none of them will mind putting their phones away for a few hours and enjoying your day.
Written by Louise Beukes, Editor of b.loved Wedding Blog & Editorial Stylist / @blovedweddings