The gay wedding is an abstract concept. Some call them unity or commitment ceremonies. Latrice Royale wants it called something more fabulous. How fabulous your ceremony is, depends on the participants.
The right for gays to marry is a disputed issue that divides families. Some couples that wish to plan ceremonies fear condemnation from family members. The fear of rejection holds some back from moving forward. Just like coming out, it is a complex step that needs to feel right for the participants. Afraid of backlash? Have a small ceremony that only includes your close supportive circle.
With no “right” template for the gay wedding, couples can feel free to incorporate traditional elements or create new ones. Many gay weddings may be fusions of the two. Most still include vows and the exchange of rings or another symbolic object, but typically have self-written vows. Research various traditions before finding what feels right for the two of you.
Many wedding traditions are heterosexual based and do not translate well (i.e. which partner needs something old and something new?). Parents often have family items (i.e. Grandma’s wedding ring), they had put aside years ago for you wife-to-be. Jewelry can often be remolded to suit new purposes.
The couple starting their lives together should have the best time at their wedding. This unfortunately is not the case for many people. Make sure your day contains only activities that you want to do, for your memories. Consider the weddings you have been to in the past. Were any as important to you as the couple being joined? Of course not. The less stress you put on yourself on the day of your ceremony, the more fun you can have.
The size of your ceremony will directly affect how much time you can spend on each guest. Large guest lists are expensive, and restrict your time with your friends. Each guest costs both time and money in preparation for the ceremony, during the ceremony and in thank you cards after. A smaller affair will net less gifts, but will be less expensive and more intimate. Consider how many people you actually want to interact with.
If and when you decide to formalize your commitment to your partner, make it about the two of you. Those who truly care about you would want it that way. There may be guests who complain, but find a wedding where that is not the case!