Q: Dear APW,
Is it insulting to call something wedding related “on trend”? I recently went wedding dress shopping with a newly engaged friend and we were accompanied by another friend. Throughout the wedding dress shopping experience, I was enthusiastic and excited for my newly engaged friend and referred to some wedding-related items, including the engagement ring as being “on trend.” Three days later, the other friend (not the recently engaged friend) took the time to tell me to avoid using the word “trendy,” as it was insulting because I was implying that something would one day be dated.
I clarified that this was not at all my intention, but this friend insisted I was wrong and that engaged women have sensitivities that I am not aware of. I have not been able to find anything online at all indicating that “on trend” should be taken as an insult so I thought I’d ask here. In the event that “on trend” is an insult, what other phrases should I be aware of so as to not put my foot in my mouth?
A: Dear Anonymous,
Hey girl! I hope you had a happy new year!
I love this question cause it’s a perfect example of the phenomenon of “giving a fuck when it’s not your turn to give a fuck.” Your “friend” who decided to admonish you about using the word “trendy” and caution you that engaged women are extra sensitive? Yep, she was giving a fuck about a situation that wasn’t her place… and her advice was misguided.
I’m assuming you know your engaged friend well, considering that you were invited to wedding dress shop with her. Do you feel at all that the bride was offended or otherwise bothered by your use of the word “trendy”? If no, then keep doing what you’re doing! But if there was even a hint that the bride was bothered by your comments, take a sec to have a quick chat with her about it, and apologize for any offense.
As for the term “trendy” being a faux pas, well, it might be with some folks, but it’s not a universal rule on par with “don’t wear white to someone else’s wedding.” Somehow folks have assumed that if you follow wedding trends (or really any trends) then your wedding will instantly be dated and obsolete. But really, everything is dated! Tastes change from year to year, decade to decade. What’s “timeless and classic” now will be right up there with those huge puffy sleeves that every ’80s bride wore (and puffy sleeves are kinda coming back right now anyway). Following trends is totally fine, if that’s what the bride and groom want to do, and it’s not a diss either way. And frankly, trying too hard to be off trend can cause its own sets of headaches as well.
As long as you’re there to support your engaged friend in whatever way she needs, you’ll be fine.
—Jareesa Tucker McClure
Got a question for Jareesa? Send it to nope [at] apracticalwedding [dot] com!