Involving Friends & Family
Guest Post by Celebrant Jacqui Nairn
If family, friends and loved ones mean the world to you and your other half, you’re probably looking for ways to get them involved in your most special of days. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
So many gorgeous ways to involve your parents in your ceremony. My personal favourite is when, if it’s available to you, break tradition and have both Mum and Dad walk you up the aisle to your fiancee on your wedding day. Mums have done just as much work as Dads … so it’s lovely to honour both by having them both at your side on your most precious of days!
One lovely thing one of my couples did was have a little gift on both of their mums seats. The mums sat down before the ceremony, opened their gifts and they were little embroidered handkerchiefs with ‘Happy tears only, Mum!’ and the date of the wedding.
Needless to say … the tears flowed straight away! But a gorgeous little thing to do.
For parents who have passed … a tiny framed photo woven into the ribbon on the wedding bouquet or one couple had her Mum’s favourite flowers making up all the wedding bouquets which was a lovely thing to talk about in the ceremony.
HOT TIP … Mums LOVE being asked to be the witnesses and it’s a lovely moment for you (and your photographer!) if both Mums do that together. They will remember and treasure it forever!
For your closest friends, the choice of being next to you as bridesmaids and groomsmen is the first option. But not everyone can be in the bridal party and often, couples struggle with where to draw the line and who misses out. If you have someone that doesn’t make the cut but you love them dearly and want them involved … here are some great ways to make them feel valued and included.
Choose a ‘ring warming’ to include in your ceremony and they can be your ‘ring guardians’ before the ceremony, inviting guests to touch the rings and bless with loving energy and good vibes. Choose some of your favourite readings and ask them to choose one to read at your ceremony – readings are a great way to take the heat off you guys for a second!
If they are a singer or performer … giving them the honour of providing musical accompaniment during the signing of your marriage licence is a really special thing to do.
For absent friends … one couple with a particularly boho vibe, had framed photos hanging from a tree that became a kind of mobile of all the people who couldn’t make it. That was a lovely touch!
HOT TIP … In these post covid times where travel and cost of travel is prohibitive, consider a video set up for overseas guests to attend your wedding virtually. There are many ways to do this, the most basic being zoom, or set up a separate group on Facebook and go live – which is super easy and means they can watch the ceremony as it happens. Give the responsibility of that to your most reliable, tech savvy guest!
Wild Folk photography
Wild Folk photography
Captured By Keryn photography
Fur babies …
Aside from the ultimate cuteness factor at your wedding … animals are like family. Good luck getting your cat involved, but dogs are the perfect wedding guests and make for fantastic photos!
One bride of mine walked up the aisle with her two dogs who both had flower collars to match her bouquet which was super adorable! Another little rascal called Waffle had both rings tied to a ribbon around his neck, so we called him when it was time and his minder released him and he came running up the aisle which was just too cute!
I’ve even had a horse with a unicorn bridle walk his owner up the aisle.
There are no rules … your fur baby, your wedding!
HOT TIP … have someone the animal trusts with some sneaky pocket treats to keep them still and occupied during the ceremony! One couple had a bone for their dog … which was great … but an interesting soundtrack to their vows which provided a few giggles!
Whoever you want involved in your wedding, there’s a way to make it happen. So let’s get creative, think outside the box and work together to make your wedding dreams come true!
A great MC can make or break your wedding. He/she's the one who does the announcements, organises the flow of the day in conjunction with the venue host and celebrant, and shields the happy couple from having to deal with any minor glitches or changes.