The way your wedding ceremony is performed and styled says a lot about you as a partnership.
When planning to walk down the aisle, there’s no need to follow tradition. You don’t even need an aisle! No, on your wedding day, you are free to pick and choose how you both want to tie the knot. If you feel a centuries’ old ritual doesn’t properly represent you, here and now, then replace it. Which is easier said than done when searching for non-traditional wedding ceremony ideas, as there’s so much out there! How can you narrow it down and make a ceremony feel unique? And which type of celebrant services are right for you?
At The Celebrant Directory, we have a huge number of celebrants in the UK, and across the world. All of whom are passionate about creating wedding ceremonies that share the real beauty of every one of their couples. It’s with their guidance and inspiration that we put together this post on non-traditional wedding ceremony ideas, as they are the experts!
What Does Your Wedding Ceremony Say About You?
If you choose to go off-script, to plan a wedding ceremony that is personal, tailored. It shows your true personality. Maybe you both do not follow the same faith, but do wish for the two religions to be represented in your exchange of vows. This is something a traditional wedding ceremony could not achieve. However, with modern celebrant services, you can blend your faiths, and create one wedding that feels uniquely you.
Faith aside, there are so many non-traditional wedding ceremony ideas that’ll show exactly what you are all about as a couple. Like stories. Our celebrants are storytellers. During a ceremony, they will treat your loved ones to an engaging, bespoke adventure tale. Something that is so much more than just a ceremony. Stories that will engage your guests, have them enthralled, and share a side of you that perhaps even your closest friends didn’t know.
Speaking of guests, do you want them present during your ceremony? Your exchange of vows is all about you, and you alone. Therefore, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have complete privacy for your ceremony. This will allow you to be completely yourselves, and share exactly how you feel about your partner, unabashed. If this is too extreme, then maybe just keep your ceremony group intimate, less than 50.
Non-traditional Wedding Ceremony Ideas
It would be very easy for us to share non-traditional wedding ceremony ideas such as hand-fasting, and jumping the broom. But you can find that sort of inspiration on our blog, or elsewhere online. Today, we’re sharing ways to make your wedding feel like it’s truly yours. Elements, and ideas that’ll help share just how wonderfully unique you both are as a couple.
Share Stories from Your Past
We touched on storytelling above, but it’s certainly worth going into more detail about. As it’s a key way for our dedicated celebrants to create a ceremony that is uniquely yours. During meetings with couples’ they soak up every bit of information possible about their past, and present, to create a real story. A story that might share your first kiss, first date, first amazing trip together, first time you said ‘I love you’ maybe. A Hollywood tale with you as its main protagonists.
The skill of a celebrant, and the beauty in their services, is being able to take whatever snippets of detail from your past you offer up, and spin it into a wonderful love story. One that celebrates your unique adventure up to now, and honours all the incredible things you’ve got to come!
Involve Your Nearest & Dearest
One of the biggest wedding ceremony trends in recent years, is bringing in your friends and family as part of the vows. And why not! For many of us, loved ones are an integral part of our relationship, so they should be involved in our big moment. This can manifest itself in several ways.
For us, one of our favourite non-traditional wedding ceremony ideas is having guest vows, and stories from friends. Guest vows can be a lovely way to either bring a smile, or deepen the moment between you. Often it’s the former, but it really depends on the vibe you want, and what you want this ceremony to say about you.
Guest vows are also not restricted to just one friend or family member, they can involve all of your guests! A call and response exchange of vows with guests can be a special way to involve everyone, and make them actually feel a part of your ceremony. Something which will speaks volumes about who you are as a couple, and how much you appreciate those around you.
If sharing vows doesn’t feel right to you, then maybe have your celebrant share the storytelling duties with your loved ones. Who better to tell guests about your first kiss, than someone who was there to witness it!
Incorporate Your Cultures
In our multicultural society, it’s beyond normal for a marrying couple to come from entirely different backgrounds, and possibly speak two different mother tongues. And this should be celebrated. We touched on religion earlier, and the way celebrant services can expertly merge two faiths together. But identity, and culture, can mean much more than just faith. Its music, stories, food, dancing, colour and dress. It’s everything.
Take what you feel represents you, and your culture, and introduce it into your ceremony. Whether that is a traditional dance before the ceremony, a marriage ritual, or simply having your partner exchange vows with you in your own language. However you choose to do it, the fusing of cultures will provide a wholly unique representation of you as a couple, and the coming together of your two families.
Have Someone Conduct Your Ceremony that Represents You
Until recently, couples had little choice over who officiates their wedding ceremony. There was either the religious path, or the non-religious path. And which you picked certainly did say a lot about you! Fortunately, these days, we benefit from the freedom to choose. And whether you have a registrar, humanist, religious, or celebrant led ceremony is completely up to you.
The type of officiant you decide on will very much reflect you as a couple, and orientate your ceremony. If you’re a little unsure of which style of service to go for, we’ve put a brief description of each below.
These individuals are employed by the local council to perform legally binding civil wedding ceremonies that fall within strict government guidelines. A registry ceremony can only be held on licensed premises, and the person marrying you will typically be a stranger, selected at random. These types of ceremonies cannot include any religious references, and there is very little opportunity to alter the script.
A humanist celebrant offers much more freedom than a registrar, but they do work within the guidelines of the Humanists Society. Meaning, you can personalise your ceremony, but you cannot include any religious elements. Humanist ceremonies can be performed wherever you like, and do not need to be held on licenced premises. However, in England and Wales at least, the weddings they perform are not legally binding.
An Independent Celebrant
An independent celebrant offers complete freedom to include whichever religious, cultural or personal elements in your wedding ceremony as you want. During our look at non-traditional wedding ceremony ideas, we had independent celebrant services in mind, as they are the true experts in creating unique moments for their couples. Celebrant weddings may not be legally binding, but they do allow the opportunity to create wholly unique ceremonies that tell a story.
There are so many options to show off who you truly are! Check out our amazing celebrants here to really give your ceremony the spark it deserves!