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Your wedding day is all about celebrating your unique love story. It is becoming increasingly common to create your own wedding day traditions to make your big day special and personal. There are many wedding ceremony traditions you can choose to either enjoy or skip on your wedding day. Are you looking for ways to make your wedding ceremony special? Here are some ideas for personalizing your wedding ceremony from a New York wedding photographer & videographer team:

Serve signature drinks to guests as they arrive.

Depending on the location of your wedding ceremony, you could create personalized cocktails for your guests to enjoy when they arrive. For example, you could serve your favorite drinks. Or you could talk with a mixologist about creating something new and unique to celebrate your big day. Then have drinks ready for your guests as they arrive at your ceremony location! This would work especially well if you have your ceremony and reception at the same venue. You might even be able to utilize the cocktail hour space for your guests to mingle before the ceremony begins.

Personalize the program.

ways to personalize your wedding ceremony program

Add some personality to your ceremony program! Your program includes helpful details you want your guests to know, like the order of events, explanations of traditions you’re including, and some information about the wedding party. Mention any special events (keep reading for some ideas!) you’re adding to your ceremony in the program, and personalize the design with photos or elements that are unique!

Seat guests in a semi-circle around you during your wedding ceremony.

If you can customize the seating arrangements at your ceremony location, why not seat guests in a semi-circle around you instead of straight rows facing forward? Guests will get a better vantage point of the ceremony and festivities. And your ceremony will feel more intimate and personal because your guests will be all around you.

Play music that means something to you.

There are so many ways you could personalize your ceremony music. For example, if the two of you have a favorite song that has meaning in your relationship, it could play just before you walk down the aisle. Or you could even use a special song as you walk down the aisle. If either of you writes music, you could even use an original piece. There is also the opportunity to hire a local musician you both love to perform your ceremony music.

have a friend sing at your wedding ceremony

Walk down the aisle together (especially if you’ve already done a first look).

walk down the aisle together on wedding day to wedding ceremony

One way to personalize your ceremony that we have seen couples do and absolutely love is walking down the aisle together. If you have already done a first look and you’re spending time together before the ceremony, you could make your ceremony that much more special and walk down the aisle together.

Have a friend officiate your wedding ceremony.

To make your wedding ceremony more personal, have a friend officiate! In most states, it is not difficult to become an ordained minister. Your friend might even be able to become ordained online. If you have someone in your life that means a lot to both of you, maybe even a family member or parent, you could have them officiate your wedding vows.

unique wedding ceremony ideas - have a friend officiate the wedding

Write your own vows and/or have a love letter ceremony.

More and more couples choose to write their own vows for their wedding ceremony. You could write personal vows to read together before or during your ceremony. You could also have a love letter ceremony where each of you writes a love letter that you can either read at your ceremony or save until an anniversary.

Choose an alternative to readings.

Readings are a popular addition to the ceremony program, where you invite friends or family members to read scriptures, quotes, or poems. Instead of a traditional reading, you could request that a few friends or relatives to share their wisdom on marriage or tell a sweet story about the two of you. Or you could have musically talented loved ones sing or perform a song.

Dance down the aisle after the “I Do’s.”

Start the dance party early by dancing back down the aisle at the end of your ceremony. You could choose an upbeat song to start the celebration or play a romantic, heartfelt song to take in your special moment as you dance with each other as a married couple for the first time.

Have a parade from the ceremony to the festivities.

You could also lead your guests from the ceremony location to the cocktail hour! If it is a manageable walk, a parade is a fun way to make your wedding ceremony memorable and enjoyable for everyone!

We are Turnquist Collective, a husband and wife wedding photography and videography team based in Hudson, New York. If you are looking for a wedding photographer and videographer for your New York wedding, get in touch with us today!

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