Modern rituals are a great way to include or pay tribute to family, friends, children or passed loved ones.
They are also a good way to have a little bit of 'extra fun' during the ceremony and to make your ceremony stand out that little bit more. Below are some different ritual ideas:
FOR THOSE WHO LIKE A DRINK...
WINE AND LETTER BOX - Before the wedding, write a letter to each other. Place your letters in sealed envelopes and bring them with you to the ceremony. During the ceremony, place your letters and a good bottle of wine in a display box. Close and lock or hammer shut the box as part of the ritual. You can then open the box, read the letters, and share the wine on an anniversary.
COCKTAIL CEREMONY - Do you have a favourite cocktail? Incorporate it into your ceremony by doing a Cocktail Ceremony. Each member of the bridal party adds an ingredient to the cocktail shaker, then the celebrant will shake it up and pour it into two glasses, from which you will toast!
GETTING YOUR GUESTS INVOLVED...
RING WARMING CEREMONY - Before the ceremony starts, put the rings in a small satchel and have your guests pass them around during the ceremony. Each guest will put a little blessing on the rings, so that by the time the exchanging of rings is performed, they have been held and blessed by all your guests.
BRIGHT LIGHT CEREMONY - Before the ceremony, give each guest a single candle. When the ceremony starts, light the first candle and have them light each other's candles one by one. This looks amazing during early evening or night-time ceremonies and is best suited for smaller audiences.
A SPECIAL SHOUT OUT - Think about whom you have in your close groups of family or friends that has really influenced who you are as a person. Then, give them a special shout out or have them come up during the ceremony to share some lovely words. This could be short and sweet and anything from some 'words of wisdom' to sharing 'what really happened.'
THE MODERN PROCESSION - Traditionally, the bride and her father walk down the aisle together at the beginning of the ceremony. But, there is no reason why you can't walk down the aisle with a close family member or friend. Also, why not have you nanna as your 'flower girl' or your brother as your 'page boy'? Escorting you into the arms of your partner is a huge honour for your family and friends, so feel free to get them involved.
SOMETHING SPECIAL FOR FAMILY, PARENTS OR CHILDREN
PRESENTATION OF FLOWERS - The bride can add two flowers to her bouquet, that she can easily remove. When she reaches the front of the aisle, she takes one out and hands it to her mother as a symbol of recognition for all that she has done for her throughout her life. At the completion of the ceremony, the bride removes the second flower and hands it to her new mother-in-law to symbolise the new relationship that has been formed.
PROMISES TO YOUR CHILDREN - Add a seperate set of 'vows' which you can each say to your new step-children. The vows can includes promises to take care of their parent, and to always try to be a good support for and friend to them.
MINI PICASSOS - When there are a lot of kids at the ceremony and you're afraid they might run a muck, here's how to keep them occupied. At the beginning of the ceremony, seat the children at the very front and hand out paper and colouring pencils. Ask them to draw what they love most about you or guys. Then, at the end of the ceremony, get the children to present their drawings to you as a gift (or to your audience).
HONOURING THOSE WHO HAVE PASSED
A MOMENT OF SILENCE - The most well known thing you can do for a family member or friend who has passed away is to have a moment's silence for them. This can be done during the introduction or at any time throughout the ceremony.
A CHAIR FOR THEM - Simply leave one chair in the front row free for your loved one. You could even put a picture of them on the chair and/or make a special mention of them at any point during the ceremony.
WORDS THEY SAY - Include a light hearted story about a passed loved one, including their nickname and/or the 'classic one liners' they always used to say.