How to have a personal wedding ceremony
Now more than ever, couples are looking to have a wedding day that truly reflects who they are as people, and their wants and dreams - and babes, I am HERE FOR IT.
It may sound slightly airy fairy, or the idea of a ceremony based around your innermost feelings and desires may fill you with the fear of being SEEN, but don’t worry - although they are emotional, personalised humanist weddings ceremonies are also the most fun and riotous, and your guests will just be overwhelmed with gratitude for not making them sit through a boring by-the-book ceremony. Super-personalised wedding ceremonies are the way forward and we are never going back!
Ok, now that you’re sold on the idea - how can you make your wedding ceremony personal to you? Obviously getting a Humanist wedding celebrant to conduct your ceremony is a great start - there are no hoops to jump through (unless you wanna want to do some hula hooping) and no boxes to check (unless you want a The US Office themed ceremony) as I can totally tailor the experience to you. (If you want to know how I do it, check that out here). But how can this actually manifest in your ceremony itself? What will it look like? Although every ceremony is totally different and unique, here’s some ideas:
One of the many great things about having a humanist celebrant is that you can hold your ceremony absolutely anywhere you please. Unlike other types of ceremony, because humanist ceremonies aren’t legal in England and Wales (yet!), it doesn’t need to be in a structure with a roof or license - we can have unlicensed, unconstrained fun baby! This means it’s a perfect way to personalise your wedding with somewhere that means a lot to you as a couple. Where did you meet? Where was your first date? Where did you fall in love? (Or, if all three are the same - are you in Love Actually?) Places with special meaning make great venues for acts with special meaning.
Of course, you have total freedom to pick readings that are noteworthy to you. There’s no requirement for any biblical/religious texts - in fact, they don’t feature at all so you can go as crazy as you like. If you want to read Jonah Hill’s Slam Poetry from 22 Jump Street to declare your love and affection, I’ll be right there with you.
It may seem obvious, but as well as making your own vows super personalised, I can make my vow-keeping incredibly personalised too. We can throw in as many Harry Potter, FRIENDS or Brooklyn 99 quotes in there as you want. We can even do it all in rhyme, if that’s your vibe. Plus, No outdated notions, no promises you’ve no intentions of keeping, no dated sayings that suggest anyone is anyone’s property (eye roll) - what’s not to love?
This is where the magic of humanist celebrants really comes out to play - fun activities can ABOUND in your ceremony. I’m able to help you make sure your wedding ceremony isn’t boring! I’ve seen it all - drinking a shot every time a certain word is mentioned, a band bursting in mid-ceremony, audience participatory bingo, the lot. If you want to keep your guests excited and entertained, I LOVE incorporating activities in to make it a fun and personal wedding ceremony – I’m a particularly big fan of singing and love finishing with raucous renditions of The Beach Boys or the Beatles, and also of imaginative ring bearing. Instead of your best man (lovely as I’m sure is) why not ask your mum to do it? Or a dog or pet? The crowd goes wild for an animal ringbearer every single time, and so do I.
Now now, don’t panic. Contrary to popular opinion, humanist wedding ceremonies don’t have to involve any particular rituals – especially the mad ones you’ve seen on the internet. However, rituals can be a really lovely way of adding some personal symbolism into a ceremony, so don’t cast them aside completely. My approach to ritual is that we’ll incorporate it – whatever ‘it’ may be – when it feels right and is born organically from what you’ve told me about yourselves, rather than crowbarring in something wacky for the sake of making the ceremony different.
As you can see, personal wedding ceremonies are my total jam – the world is your oyster with them and you two are its shining, engaged pearl. If you want to get in touch to discuss how to make your wedding ceremony the most fun you’ve ever had in your life (bold claim but I’m sticking to it), please do get in touch.