Are same sex weddings any different to heterosexual weddings in the UK?

Same sex wedding UK

Ok so this is a question we often get asked, and it has a very simple answer, hell no!

Bet you didn’t expect that…. ok so what we mean is every ceremony is different, unique, and personalised. Heterosexual, bisexual, gay or just a little bit barmy, it doesn’t matter who you are marrying, you can pick and choose the elements you like from a traditional ceremony and mash it up with your own style.

On a serious note however, legally, a marriage is the recognized union between two people partnering in a personal relationship whether that be two people who are a man and women, two women or two men. It is simply two people declaring their love for one another. Oh yes, at the end of the day, it’s all about the LOVE.

So where can same sex weddings take place?

Since 2014, when same-sex marriages became legal in the UK, nearly 200 places of worship have opted to carry out same-sex weddings in comparison to the 40,000 places of worship that conduct heterosexual weddings. Those statistics alone highlight that finding a religious venue might not be as straightforward at first, but more and more places of worship are welcoming the LGBT communities!

Same sex weddings

When it comes to planning all things wedding related whether that be the venue (religious or non-religious), catering or the decoration vendors your dealing with you, most people are LGBT welcoming so it’s not something to worry about. Although sometimes we do hear of the odd story on the contrary, it could just that some places might need more guidance than others, perhaps they haven’t catered to a same-sex wedding before! Just make sure to do some research and look out for recommendations as there are plenty of gorgeous venues out there that you’ll love. 

Stereotypical Gender roles – throw them out the window!

With traditions such as walking down the aisle, throwing the bouquet and the traditional groom in a tux and the bride in the dress. Where do you stand with these traditions when you are marrying same sex?

Who walks down the aisle?

Simple answer, you choose! Either one of you can walk down the aisle or you could decide to both walk down the aisle separately with your mum/dad or we’ve even heard that some couples like to walk in together, hand in hand. You are entering into this marriage together, so why not join hands and jump right in!

Wedding attire? Who wears what?

As two women getting married, does one person wear a suit and one wear a dress? This is probably one of the top questions asked about same-sex marriages.

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And the answer is, it’s all down to the couple and how they want to represent their own style! You could both wear suits, or both wear dresses. Dress however represents you both best and what you’ll feel most comfortable in. As for two grooms? The same applies! Dress however you want, it’s your big day so put your own unique stamp on it!


‘I now declare you man and wife’ is what you’re probably used to hearing right? Well, that can also be changed as with a Celebrant led ceremony, this is not legally binding. You get the flexibility to be as creative as you want with your vows and commitments. You no longer have to ‘obey’ your partner (unless you really want to of course…!). You could change it to ‘I now declare you married’, ‘partners for life’, ‘lovers and supporters’ or find another way to cement the vows in a way that feels right to you. 

Who throws the bouquet?

Do you even need to have a bouquet? Again, the choice is yours, you could have two bouquets or none. If you’ve got two to throw, all the more fun for your guests! Bouquets, flowers, balloons and sashes are all traditional ways to decorate your wedding, but just get yourself on Pinterest for a ton more personalised ideas to jazz up your big day whatever makes up your partnership.

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But the most important thing to remember is, love is love. No matter who you are or where you come from a wedding is a beautiful joining of two people wanting to share the rest of their lives together and I can’t think of anything more special than that!

Jennifer Claire is the Founder of The Celebrant Directory and lives and breathes all things ceremony! After officiating big days for 10 years, she now focuses on giving you the tips you need to create your perfect celebration.

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