Weddings and Vow Renewals

By hiring a professional Independent Celebrant you can hold Weddings and Vow Renewals wherever you like?  But hang on … doesn’t the venue have to be licenced?  No, not when you use a Celebrant.  Modern couples are discovering there is a way to have their day exactly the way they want it: a Celebrant-led Wedding ceremony or Vow Renewal is the answer!

Michelle and John's Minimalist, Honest, Hand-Made Wedding by Yvonne Lishman

I believe that your Wedding Day should start with a truly personal Wedding Ceremony.   Why shouldn’t your Ceremony be just as beautiful and personal as all those special touches you have planned for your Wedding Reception and the rest of your big day?

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I specialise in creating individually crafted bespoke and personal Wedding Ceremonies which are written just for you – a complete one-off that won’t be repeated.  People tell me my ceremonies are a refreshing alternative to the standard marriage service that is delivered by local authority Registrars. They’re also free of the restrictions Registrars insist on, so give you much more choice!

Some of the more unusual ideas from Wedding Ceremonies I’ve created in the past, include the couple making the first cut of their wedding cake using a ceremonial sword, hammering copper coins into a tree slice, and lighting baptismal candles in a special unity candle ceremony.

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These special rituals are a beautiful way of involving family or friends in your personal Vow Renewal or Wedding Blessing ceremony as well as making a fabulous visual impact! You could ask parents or siblings to help you by lighting the outer candles for a unity candle ceremony, before passing them to you to light the centre “couple” candle.  Friends and family may also help you tie the knot, with a modern twist on the ancient ritual of handfasting!  Handfasting cords can be plain ribbon, tartan or pre-braided.

There are so many lovely ways in which you can enhance your wedding ceremony, why not take a look at some other ideas for Personalising your Wedding Ceremony here.

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You can include any religious or cultural symbolism, perhaps one of the old traditions like jumping the broom, handfasting, or other rituals into your Wedding Ceremony.  These are just examples – you may choose any content you like for your wedding.  It will be different from anything your guests have been expecting, it will be personal to you and never rushed!

Celebrant-led Weddings and Vow Renewals can take place at any time, and vary from small intimate gatherings in a private garden or restaurant, to much larger celebrations in a grand country house, castle, tipi or marquee.  Or how about going back to nature and hosting your nuptials in a woodland setting or meadow? Anything’s possible.

Music and readings will have a big part to play in your Wedding Ceremony and I encourage you to think about these carefully, choosing the pieces that mean the most to you – and that will work within the Ceremony.  Head over to my Free Wedding Ceremony Playlists to download and listen to a selection of wedding music specially chosen by me for some very different ceremony styles!

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A Renewal of Vows Ceremony follows a very similar format to a traditional Wedding – you may make an entrance together, or one partner may wait for the other … you could be escorted by any family member, perhaps your children or even grandchildren, however you feel most comfortable.

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Weddings and Vow Renewals often celebrate a special Anniversary.  Again, these are written from scratch and we have a lot of fun incorporating your love story into the ceremony script, including a little humour and I thoroughly recommend some family and friends involvement too.  We discuss your ideas at our initial planning meeting, you choose the vows and symbolic elements you’d like to include, and your script takes shape over the months and weeks prior to your ceremony.

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The heart of the Ceremony is where you re-affirm your marriage vows. This can be symbolised by presenting new wedding rings to each other, the lighting of a unity candle, a handfasting, or perhaps a family sand ceremony ritual – all of which give you a beautiful keepsake afterwards.

ALL the couples featured here in these photographs are my real-life actual clients pictured at their ceremonies with me – no models or stock images here!   With grateful thanks to their photographers …