Beyond the “I Do”: 10 Ways to Have a Meaningful Ceremony
Wedding Ceremony Ideas to Make Your Wedding More Meaningful
With all the million wedding planning ideas and to-dos swirling around in your head, we wanted to make things a little easier on you and create a list of things for you and your soon-to-be-spouse to think of to make it feel personal and meaningful. So take note of these 10 things that will ensure a meaningful wedding ceremony feels like you because as long as it feels like you, mission accomplished!
1. Determine the “Heartbeat” of Your Ceremony
This may seem a bit tedious because who likes homework, but we think you’ll like this one! Snuggle up on the couch with your fav beverage of choice and think about things that are important to you both. This will help determine the “heartbeat” or overall vibe of your ceremony. What elements about other weddings hit you, right in the feels? Include those too if they speak to your heart! Do you want traditional elements? Do you want a religious ceremony? These are great questions to ask yourself and each other while you try not to cry in all the wedding videos we know you’ll inevitably watch. Because we’re also #guilty.
2. Create the Soundtrack of Your Relationship
Now that you have a sense of the overall vibe of your wedding ceremony, it’s time to think music! There are a lot of moments to incorporate music into your wedding ceremony. Family entrances, bridal party, your entrance, any songs you’d like sung live or played during communion, a sand ceremony, hand ceremony…you get the idea. Again, do you want traditional songs? Or do you want to include that funny song you guys both secretly love, or the song that was playing during your first kiss? Include music that has meaning to you! Every time you listen to that song afterwards will bring you right back to your wedding day.
Photo by Jane in the Woods from this Ethereal Bohemian Wedding
3. Write Your Vows
You want to give yourself plenty of time to write something that’s authentic and meaningful without feeling rushed. Chat with your partner about a general feel or outline you’d like to each follow and then get cracking! If you’re feeling stuck, start with this guide!
4. Include Your Loved Ones
There are a few different ways to include your family and friends in your wedding ceremony that will just warm your heart. The most obvious one being, have a friend of family member officiate your wedding. Just think of all the personal details they can incorporate including your love story from their perspective. So sweet! You can also have a friend do a reading (see more on that at number 8!) or one of my favs is a “ring warming”. Whether this just be the parents, or maybe the bridal party, but the ring will be past between a few people before reaching the bride and groom. As they pass the ring, they are sending it with a well-wish on your marriage therefore “warming” the band for you and your spouse.
Photo Gaby J Photography by from this Desert Chic Las Vegas wedding
5. Personalize Details
Whether you use a line from your song as a couple in the programs or include sentimental objects from your relationship in the wedding, it will make your ceremony feel so much more personal and meaningful. That beautiful goblet from your grandmother might be perfect for communion or the roses you kept from your first date can be included in a bouquet. It doesn’t necessarily have to stand out for your guests, but will be something that you know is there and will warm your heart.
6. Incorporate Cultural Traditions
The blending of cultures amongst two people is always a gorgeous and heart-felt moment. So if your husband is Scottish, does he want to wear a kilt or include a hand-fasting ceremony? Or how about jumping over the broom? Or including a specific color that has special meaning. The list can go on and on that can allow both people to be equally represented in what will be a forever equal partnership.
Photo by: Bryan Miller Photography from this Luxe Santa Fe Wedding
7. Rethink the Ceremony Layout
Have you thought about having your wedding in the round? Or how about a U shape? If you have the flexibility in your ceremony location and want it to feel more intimate, there are several different layouts to consider that you should definitely chat about with your wedding planner. Again, thinking back to number 1, what do you want your wedding ceremony to feel like?
8. Research Ceremony Readings
This goes back to item number one on your checklist, but if you’re wanting to include a ceremony reading or two, you will want to do your research so it still connects with the overall vibe you’re going for. Whether that be deep or light-hearted, you can pull ideas from your favorite movies, a spiritual book, one of the many romantic sonnets by Shakespeare or your other favorite author, or even a sappy moment from your favorite TV show. Nothing here is off-limits.
Photo by The Poffs from this Palm Springs Wedding
9. Include Your Pup
Honestly, this is our favorite one to consider. Do you want to have a dog-of-honor like these cuties? Or maybe they will just make a surprise appearance that is a delight to everyone. Your dog could even act as a ring bearer or flower girl. Either way, including your furry friend, who is really family, is a great idea to consider.
10. Include Your Favorite Treat
Are you having a morning wedding and just love mimosas? How about a welcome drink into the ceremony? Or maybe you just love confetti, have your guests toss some as you walk down the aisle. Or you guys are chocolate lovers and met on a tour of a chocolate museum and want to include a piece of chocolate on each chair. As long as it’s not outdoors during summer, go for it! Your favorite treats don’t have to be saved exclusively for your reception. I mean it is YOUR wedding day after all.
We hope these 10 ideas will help create a meaningful wedding ceremony that feel like you, and give you the chance to reflect on the love you share for each other amidst all the crazy wedding planning details swirling around in your head! Oh while you want to ensure you have a rain backup plan if your wedding is outdoors, you might just want the rain to come after seeing this gorgeous rainy day wedding!