There’s always a new and different way for you to make your wedding ceremony yours, a quick and easy way to hack it and make it feel more like you, and your fiance.
I would hope that every ceremony I perform would scream the bride’s and groom’s passions and characters.
Here’s some unique ways to make the ceremony all about you and your partner.
1. Have your closest friends and family marry you, make it a community event. That is, involve all of them in the ceremony, not just as groomsmen or bridesmaids, but ask them to perform a ceremonial aspect of the ceremony or sing a song, perhaps even a poem or a scripture reading. It’s a creative way of honouring their commitment to the commitment that the bride and groom are making. One couple I’m marrying next year is having the bride’s daughter take them through their vows.
2. Have a man of honour or a best girl. If your best friend is of the opposite sex don’t deny them prime position!
3. Have your guests sit or stand in a circle around you as you are married. In a circle or a horseshoe shape.
4. Don’t have an official bridal party and tell everyone invited that they are your bridal party.
5. Write your own vows, Britt and I did and it still is the most memorable and special thing to us from the day.
6. Have a ring warming. (What’s a ring warming you ask? There are different versions of this, but generally the rings are placed in a small bag and are passed around to each guest prior to the ring exchange. Each guest blesses the rings or says a prayer.)
Bridesmaids could carry something other than flowers, if flowers aren’t a special object in your life. Perhaps candles, or a book, or a ceremonial symbol.
7. Choose a processional song that is very special to both of you. It doesn’t have to be a ‘wedding’ song.
8. Honour your cultures with a prayer, poem or song from your heritage.
9. Hire a professional solo artist or band to sing a song of your choosing. Make it a lively event.
10. Exit the ceremony to spend a few moments in private together, instead of walking into the crowd of guests. It’s based off a jewish tradition, but you could make it yours.
11. Hold the ceremony in a place that’s special to you both, perhaps underwater or in a certain restaurant.
12. Don’t say I do. You don’t have to, in fact there are only a few things you have to say. Make sure your celebrant isn’t throwing a ‘default’ ceremony at you.
13. Ask the celebrant to identify guests subtly or secretly in the message. It might be a nice way of subtly honouring them.
14. Sit all of the guests on hay bales. Or choose other odd or special seats.
15. Invite as few people as possible. It’s not a competition to see who can have the biggest wedding. Make the guest list intimate and special.
16. Give your celebrant some ideas on what they could joke about, and what they shouldn’t joke about. Not that they would start a stand-up comedy gig, but so they could bring a smile into the day.
17. Look at everything you’re doing on the day, and ask yourself why you’re doing it. If you can’t find a good reason, throw it out! This goes for everything from timing, to having a bridal party, releasing doves, throwing the bouquet, etc. Find a reason for it or throw it.
18. Get your own special blend or brew, of wine or beer, labelled and distributed to your guests at your reception.
19. Prepare a special morning for the boys. The girls will often spend all morning in makeup, but the boys do nothing, plan a day for them.
20. Feel free to fire, re-hire, and fire again if your wedding professional isn’t providing you with the service you need. Don’t pander to poor-quality staff if your one and only wedding day is at risk. Take it by the horns and make it awesome!