Jess the Celebrant


5 Tips for Writing Your Wedding Vows

When I speak to couples I’m going to be marrying and the subject of wedding vows comes up I occasionally see a look of horror on the face of one or more people in that couple when they think about having to write their own wedding vows.  Firstly, you don’t have to write your own vows if you don’t want to.  You can stick to the more traditional format of repeating vows after me, and we can come up with exactly what you would like those vows to be together.  This works beautifully.

However, there is something really special about listening to unique vows in the ceremony and it’s a really lovely, emotional part of the wedding ceremony or vow renewal.  So, if you do decide you want to write your own vows it needn’t be a dreaded task!  You celebrant is there to offer advice and feedback throughout the process.  Here are my top 5 tips to get you started when writing vows:

1. Note Down the Content in Bullet Form First

Think about key questions about your partner and your relationship to get the basic content for your vows.  These could be along the lines of:

  • Why do you want to marry your partner?
  • What first attracted you to them?
  • What do you love most about your partner?
  • What qualities do you admire in your partner?
  • What are some tough times you have been through together?
  • What are your dreams for the future as a married couple?
  • What promises do you want to make to your partner?

2. Be You

Make sure what you are writing sounds like you.  It should come straight form the heart and not just be things you feel you should say.  If you are a natural clown, then it’s likely your partner loves that about you, and they will expect some humour and light-heartedness in your vows.    Your vows should flow naturally if you feel comfortable with what you are saying.

3. Consider Timing

Remember, the speeches come later in the day!  Your vows really don’t need to be any longer than two minutes.  It needs to fit into the ceremony structure nicely and you don’t want people getting bored!  Your wedding celebrant will the able to advise you on this.

4 Get a Friend to Proofread Your Vows

Your partners best friend could be a good sounding board if you need someone to give you a second opinion on your vows.  They probably know your partner as well as you do and they will know if a joke is going to fall flat, or if a ‘funny anecdote’ is going to embarrass them.  If you don’t want to show them everything you have written, perhaps just discuss any parts you are unsure about.

5. Try and Enjoy the Process

Writing your vows should be enjoyable and it should reaffirm all the reasons why you are having your wedding ceremony, to celebrate your love for each other.  Have fun with it and think outside the box.  Consult your partner about the kind of tone you want to take before you start writing too, so you know you are on the same page.  Enjoy!

Photo by Camden & Hailey George on Unsplash

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