In today’s age, we are seeing more and more couples break away from traditional wedding customs, and instead introduce their own. Your wedding vows are no different.
Custom wedding vows are written from the heart and are personalised, authentic, and true to you as a couple – we mean, what is more real than that?!
Breaking away from tradition:
Gone are the days of using ‘thee’ & ‘troth’ in our everyday vocabulary, so you shouldn’t have to use these phrases when committing your love to one another. This isn’t to say that there is anything wrong with tradition, and if traditional wedding vows are meaningful to you as a couple then you should 110% use them as part of your marriage ceremony. Remember, it’s your day, you can do as you please!
So unless you want to use the tradition, it is more than okay (really it is encouraged) for you to write your own vows.
From the heart:
If it was up to us, we would say that writing your vows would have had to be the most heartfelt, rewarding and emotional part of your wedding planning journey. It brings you back down to reality to remember why you are actually marrying your person of choice, rather than worrying about your seating plan and if those last minute shoes you ordered are going to arrive on time.
There are many ways to write your wedding vows, but unless you are the next Tim Winton or Egdar Allan Poe, it may end up being a harder task than you originally had thought. With so many memories to reflect on, good times shared and reasons why you love your significant other, it can sometimes be hard to narrow it down and know exactly what to include and what to leave out.
To get to the point, we have put together a little recipe for vow writing success, that we hope will help you in crafting vows that will make your other half laugh, cry and confirm how much you love them.
Things to Remember:
1. Be thoughtful – your vows are meant to make your other half feel friggin’ amazing, so speak from the heart.
2. Be personal – use your fiancés name or nickname. Remember, you are talking to them.
3. Be considerate – though humour, and wit is encouraged in tasteful doses, hint at the funny stories or embarrassing moments rather than spelling them out. Your vows aren’t a script for roasting your other half. Remember point 1, make your partner feel friggin’ amazing!
4. The legalities – remember that there are some legal requirements for marriage vows, so be sure to chat to your celebrant, officiant, or whoever may be the one to make it legal, prior to writing to make sure you have everything you need to include. Also advise them of your wish to write your own custom vows, so they can plan your ceremony with this in mind.
5. Do it your way – If you are a singer, then sing! If you enjoy poetry, write a poem, do what is true to you.
6. Plan with your partner – make sure you are on the same page with your partner. Together, determine the length and tone of your vows, to help guide you both through the process.
Length: 5-8 sentences
Tone: (clarify the degree of humour) – No sexy stories, no mention of our trip to the slopes, only one cheeky comment allowed – you get the picture.
Like all great love stories, your vows will have a beginning, a middle and an end.
An opening statement. Set the scene and give context to what you say next. Make reference to when you knew you first loved them, or how you came to realise you knew they were the one.
Here are some sentence starters to get you thinking:
– Remember when…
– When we first met…
– When I think about…
– I love the way you…
– It will never be (something) without (something)…
The why – everyone knows you are lovestruck, but what is it that makes you love your fiancé the most? This is your chance to tell them exactly what and why you love them.
Gather some descriptive words that best represent your fiancé, and tie them together with a few sentences on what makes them so amazing.
– What makes your fiancé unique / what are their best qualities?
– What do you look forward to the most about seeing them each day?
– How is your fiancé different from anyone you have ever met?
The promises & your future together.
What do you promise?
– If there were only 3 promises you could make to your fiancé for the rest of your lives, what would they be?
Reflect on your future together.
– What are you looking forward to? This could be a long term goal you have made together like travelling the world or building a holiday house, or milestone such as starting a family.
– Pssttt; this is where you could add your touch of cheeky by saying something like ‘I can’t wait to grow old, wrinkly and cranky together’ or ‘I hope our future daughter has your brains, and my sass’.
Recipe for success:
Mind map and write down absolutely everything you feel is important & you want to bring to the table. Reread over it and circle the no.1s.
Make a list of descriptive words that best describe your future spouse, these will come in handy when you are wanting to bulk up or link sentences.
Then add it to a table like this:
**Another tip: keep all of your sentences short & sweet. This will help with the overall flow and will also work in your favour when reading aloud.
A draft is better than nothing at all! And finished is better than perfect. Once you have your points, you are pretty much there. Don’t over think it and don’t pick it apart. Your vows are meant to come from the heart.
YOU DID IT, well done! Now it’s time to re-read and rehearse.
First of all, make sure you can read them. Make yourself two copies; a nice presented version which you can give to your other half after the ceremony, and a version you can read. Think black, san serif block letters printed on white paper, in a size you can see.
Practice speaking out loud, and in front of a mirror. Even if you are the best public speaker with nerves of steel, you never know what kind of emotions are going to hit you on your wedding day. So, practise speaking your vows with confidence and calm, remember to look up and pretend to practise making eye contact with your partner, imagine you are speaking directly to them.
And last but not least, try to memorise as much as you can. Your vows will be so much more heartfelt if you are looking into your partner’s eyes than reading off of a piece of paper.