We tend to think of the traditional wedding ceremony as being set in stone. But the truth is, wedding traditions are constantly changing. Sometimes those changes are relatively subtle, while at other times they can be fairly dramatic. Either way, the evolution of the wedding service is constant and continual.
Couples today should have no hesitation when it comes to creating a unique wedding ceremony that reflects their own singular styles and tastes. If you find the ‘traditional’ wedding service just a little too staid and conservative for your tastes, consider the following tips for adding a unique touch to your wedding ceremony.
#1 – Seating Arrangements
Traditionally, seating arrangements during the wedding service have been highly regimented. The groom’s friends and family are seated on the right, while the bride’s friends and family are seated on the left. In order to better reflect the joining of two families, why not allow your guests to seat themselves. It makes for a more festive, and less regimented, service, and allows your friends and family to meet on equal footing.
#2 – The Bridal Bouquet
The bridal bouquet has a long history, and is one of the longest standing wedding traditions. The bride’s floral bouquet represents new life, while the tossing of the bouquet is meant to mark the next in line for wedded bliss. These are fairly old fashioned concepts, and could use an update. Instead of the traditional floral bouquet, why not have a fabric bouquet created especially for your wedding. A fabric bouquet will never wilt, and makes a great wedding memento. It can still be used in a traditional bouquet toss, or it can be preserved and presented to the mother of the bride as a keepsake.
#3 – The Bridesmaid Bouquet
During a traditional wedding service, the bridesmaids typically carry their own smaller wedding bouquets. But even here you can change things up a bit. Instead of the traditional floral bouquet, give your bridesmaids something unique to carry. If you are planning an evening wedding, they could carry lighted lanterns to cast a subdued yet festive light on the proceedings. You might also consider presenting each of your bridesmaids with a small clutch purse filled with wedding favors. This not only makes a nice change from the traditional floral bouquet, but gives your bridesmaids a wedding gift that they will use and cherish for years to come.
#4 – A Different Kind of Unity Ceremony
Unity ceremonies have taken many different forms over the years, and the exchanging of rings is only the latest in a long line of ceremonial traditions. Many modern couples have revived the candle lighting unity ceremony, but there are many others that you might consider. For a southern themed wedding, you might include a playful jumping of the broomstick to symbolize long life and a happy home. If you are planning a nautical themed wedding, your unity ceremony might consist of tying a fisherman’s knot, symbolizing your unbreakable bond.
#5 – The Bride’s Entrance
We have gotten used to certain musical selections being played as the bride makes her entrance, and as she is escorted down the aisle. But there is no rule that says you have to play Wagner’s “Bridal Chorus” or Pachelbel’s “Canon in D”. Let your own tastes dictate the music you choose for your wedding ceremony, and don’t be afraid to think out of the box. If classical music is not to your taste, feel free to pick a favorite pop song or jazz tune to accompany your walk down the aisle. Choosing your own music for both the wedding processional and wedding recessional is a great way to put your own personal stamp on the ceremony.
Wedding traditions come and go, and new ones are being created every day by couples who want to put their own unique stamp on their big day. Your wedding ceremony should reflect your personality, and you should feel free to depart from tradition at any time. Let your own imagination be your guide, and design a wedding service that is uniquely yours. And as you walk back down the aisle as husband and wife, your guests will say “Now that’s the happy couple we know and love.”