Blog Alexandra Weddings

Ceremony Basics: A Three-Part Guide (3/3)

Part Three

Certificate Signing

Consider whether you’d like guests come closer for a photo and a good look at the signing of the Register. Perhaps you’d like someone other than your Maid of Honour and Best Man to sign for you to include another person close to you in the ceremony.

Rituals

We are all familiar with the age-old wedding ritual of exchanging rings but there are a plethora of interesting and historical rituals you can include in your ceremony to add to the solemnity of the occasion. Celtic hand-fasting; the fish bowl ritual; releasing butterflies; sand ceremony and ring warming are just a few. You can find more here at Alexandra Weddings Ritual Page or scour the net for more ideas.

Recessional (also known as walking back down the aisle)

These are your first moments as a married couple so why not make them memorable! Do you want guests throw confetti or rice (check on venue limitations on this) or perhaps blow bubbles? Your guests could form an archway for you to walk under or you could dance down the aisle together to your favourite club track Think about whether you’d like the guests to follow you and whether you’d like them to congratulate them then and there or wait until you return to the reception. Another option is to exit the ceremony to spend a few moments in private together, instead of walking into the crowd of guests.

Group and Family Photos

Now that the formalities of the ceremony are over, it’s a great time to get that wonderful full wedding group shot as everyone is in the same spot and relatively easy to wrangle. Consider writing a list of the family and bridal party photo combinations and giving this to the photographer prior to the big day to make sure you get all of the shots you’re after. These are just some points to keep in mind when planning the ceremony aspect of your wedding. Remember, whatever you choose to include, have a good think about whether it really means something to you both as a couple. Happy ceremony planning!

Ceremony Basics: A Three-Part Guide (2/3)

The recent bout of rainy weather in Sydney is a PERFECT time to stay indoors and tick some major wedding planning boxes. If you've been holding out on the ceremony for fear of where to start, here's the second instalment of my three-part guide to your perfect ceremony.

Part Two

Music

I tell clients of Alexandra Weddings to think of ceremony music in four parts or playlists: atmospheric music to set the mood for your guests before and after the ceremony; the song the bride will walk down the aisle to; music for the signing of the certificates and the song you'll walk back down the aisle together to as a married couple. You could collate these as playlists on an ipod; hire a professional to sing songs of your choosing or perhaps even have a string quartet pumping out classical versions of your favourite songs.

Giving Away

The majority of weddings conducted by Alexandra Weddings still see the father of the bride walk his daughter down the aisle and present her to her husband-to-be. But if you're a little less traditional, perhaps you'd like your sister, mother or best guy friend to give you away or you could even boldly walk down the aisle on your own.

Vows

Whether your vows are serious or light-hearted, make sure they mean something to the both of you as a couple and reflect the values and commitment of you as a unique pairing. You can choose to write your own to make it really personal and surprise your other half or have the celebrant provide personalised vows for you. In the past "I'll be the Yoshi to your Mario" has cracked me up during the ceremony and I've also had grooms promise to let their partner watch Real Housewives of Melbourne even though it terrible and depletes brain cells.

Legal

There are some parts of a ceremony like the Monitum and The Asking that are non-negotiable in a legal sense but this doesn't mean you can't be creative with them. Don't want to say the words "I Do?" You don't have to! AS long as there's some form of a verbal offering and accepting of the wedding "contract" you'll be legally married. More and more, couples married by Alexandra Weddings choose to add a paragraph stating that they look forward to the day their friends in same-sex couples can be married too. Only include this if you feel that it's appropriate for you, your wedding and your guests.

A Cumber-match Made In Heaven (Ibiza actually...)

This afternoon I was left feeling deflated and disgruntled as the very likely future Prime Minister of Australia, Tony Abbott called gay marriage a "fashion of the moment". These types of comments set the clock back decades and deeply hurt those who are gay, know a gay person or are perhaps related to one. It's not on. 

Then suddenly, the sun peeped out from behind the clouds for a moment as this lovely story fell onto my eyeballs. 

Benedict Cumberbatch officiates the wedding of two gay friends in Ibiza. 

 

It reminded me of a fabulous wedding I attended as a guest last year where the couple had a close mutual friend of theirs act as the celebrant for the main ceremony and then got married with a few witnesses the next morning before the post-wedding barbecue. 

Their friend conducted the entire ceremony in a Tutankhamun head dress (for no obvious reason other than smashing decoration) and used props including a large, sharp kitchen knife during the ceremony. It was HILARIOUS and completely irreplacable as the most memorable part of their wedding day. 

It's a great option for a really personal ceremony, have the celebrant officiate a very small ceremony to get the legal stuff out of the way and then have a close friend, relative, comedian or even drag-queen do the honours for all of your treasured guests. 

Get in touch if you'd like a celebrant to do the offical stuff so your ceremony is a truly personal reflection of you both as a couple. 

 

 

Autumn Weddings

April's a busy month in the world of a celebrant and here are two of the many weddings that I am taking care of this month. 

Jenna and Mark met at uni and were such a relaxed and easy-going couple to create a ceremony with. Even pouring rain on the day of their ceremony in the Rose Garden of the Royal Botanic Gardens didn't budge their buoyant moods. Luckily the clouds parted at the PERFECT moment, just before Jenna walked down the grass aisle. 

 

 

 Andrew and Bianca, two darlings of the night-life scene in Sydney chose the dramatic backdrop of the National Art School in Darlinghurst and set the courtyard up like a carnival with different food and drink stalls to keep the stylish guests entertained. 

 

Anneleise & Paul - Low Key and Lovely

Late in December last year a small group of Anneleise and Paul's closest friends and family gathered in Wahroonga Park on Sydney's Upper North Shore to celebrate the first of TWO wedding cereonies for the couple. Despite a little bit of wind and three drops of rain on an otherwise hot day, Anneliese and Paul were officially married in this gorgeous, under-stated location right near their home. It was a DIY affair with sisters, mums and the celebrant hanging paper lamp shades and setting up the bar for a personal and intimate post-ceremony picnic in the park.

 

The Sydney ceremony was for family and friends who couldn't make the trip to Koh Samui, Thailand where Anneliese and Paul had a Buddhist Water Ceremony two weeks later. Anneliese and Paul kindly emailed me the photos of this ceremony and it looks AMAZING! 

The orange robes juxtaposed with the pale blues of the decorations is just divine. What a special couple of weddings for a special couple. 

Paul and Anneliese xx