Gay Wedding DOs and DON'Ts


By Scott Barnes

With the passage of same sex marriage in New York, it's time for gay couples to emerge from the sidelines and begin planning the wedding they've been dreaming of FOREVER. "Re-inventing" the traditional event, Buddakan and Stephen STARR Events offer full-service catering for weddings of all sizes. Creating a one-of-a kind sensory experience unlike any other, attendees will be impressed by your exceptional choice of venue and caterer whether it's the engagement party, shower, rehearsal dinner, reception or post-wedding brunch.

Buddakan accommodates parties from 15-800 guests in its dynamic space. Your guests will be mesmerized by the breathtaking Christian Liaigre design of such rooms as the Library, Chinese Lounge, or perhaps the Buddha Wall. Ladies (and queens alike) can break out the Manolos and share a celebratory kiss at the Communal Table where 'Sex and the City' characters Carrie and Big held their own famed rehearsal dinner.

Stephen STARR Events is now the exclusive caterer for the newly remodeled New-York Historical Society, opening this November. Where 'making history matters', what better place to celebrate than amongst New York's most treasured pieces at the oldest museum in the city? Stephen STARR Events also caters affairs in private residences and at other off-premise locations throughout Manhattan.

Scott's Tips, Tricks & Trade Secrets
Nix the favors. They usually get thrown away the morning after the event. Do make a donation to charity with those funds instead; your guests will admire your philanthropic spirit on your special day. One organization we like is, which connects prospective parent(s) with adoption funds regardless of sexual orientation, race marital status or gender.

Ditch the etiquette books
Antiquated ideas of what proper behavior is does not quite match the modern wedding. Do set your own rules with your spouse. Your wedding should be a celebration of the two of you and a totally unique experience. Don't be afraid to think outside the box.

Rent a tuxedo? Are you sure you're gay?
Rental formal wear stores do not deliver high fashion nor the latest styles and trends. That suit cannot be tailored to your specific body type and fit properly (why are you sweating your butt off in the gym to be hard bodied?).

Do buy yourself an investment suit that you will wear again
For ladies, do try renting a dress for the event. offers designer styles at 10% of retail pricing. Don't go matchy-matchy with your spouse. You each have your own unique style and that can be reflected in your wedding day wardrobe selection.

Do think creatively to avoid a cookie-cutter reception location
Pick a venue that reflects your personalities, whether it is your favorite restaurant (like Buddakan) or an iconic Big Apple institution like the newly renovated New-York Historical Society overlooking Central Park.

Don't leave your out-of-town guests wondering what to do all weekend in the city
Organize a day out to see a Broadway show, hit the museums and visit the Empire State Building complete with dining experiences that scream N-Y-C. Make Aunt Helen's first trip to the city magical and filled with rainbows. Create a personalized map of significant events in your relationship, along with a weekend itinerary ' think first date, first kiss, first matching tattoo, favorite caf', favorite trinket shop, or where your significant other popped the question. Your family and friends will appreciate New York through your eyes much more so than any ordinary tourist's map. Send welcome baskets to out-of-town guests, complete with a subway map, MetroCard and favorite New York treats.

Formal sit-down dinner, round tables of eight, seating assignments . . . is this a debutante ball or the most fabulous affair of the year, if not the decade?!
Have passed food paired with interactive stations. Your guests will be able to mix, mingle and eat throughout the evening. And more importantly, you will get more one-on-one time with your loved ones and guests as well.

Stocking the bar with just the typical spirits like vodka, gin and whiskey is so pass'
Shake up some custom cocktails inspired by your wedding day or have a bar featuring a specialty liquor like Absinthe, Pimms or St. Germaine. Mixologists can be hired for the Big Day to stir in some sophistication at the bar as well.

The Wedding Singer vs. Studio 54
Don't hire the tired wedding band that only knows the classics. Do have a DJ that is versatile enough to entertain grandma AND your friend who hits the clubs four times a week. The music should evolve as the evening progresses. After all, who doesn't love a remix or mash-up?

Floral centerpieces and votive candles on every table?
Think trendsetting table-scapes, couture centerpieces and unique decor make the day, well, FABULOUS. Color, variety and size is all up to you. Flowers are the perfect way to customize your Big Day. Prudence Designs & Events can create the magical d'cor that represents your taste and personality as a couple.