I just saw a great blog on A Cup of Jo which asked the question: “Do or Don’t: Writing Your Own Wedding Vows.“ The blog writer (Megan Cahn) answers the question in the affirmative and tells her own first hand account of how she and her husband did it at their wedding. Her story is awesome but if anything, her vows and love story concept may seem a little too much for some people.
So, as someone who has witnessed hundreds of wedding ceremonies as a DJ, and in the past few years has officiated a bunch now too, I want to encourage any couple that is considering writing their own vows to do it! They truly can become the highlight of the whole day.
Most couples strive for personalization at their weddings. Most couples want their ceremony and reception to be unique and memorable and their own personal love story is one way to make it that way. In Cahn’s description of her ceremony, she and her husband took on that task (of telling their own love story.) Any couple with the time to write it, and the public speaking skills to present it, should seriously consider doing the same. If not, work with an officiant who is willing to take the time to interview you, craft your story and tell it themselves (shameless plug, it’s the only way I like to do ceremonies!)
Which brings us to your wedding vows. This is another opportunity for the married couple to make their promises unique and memorable. And sometimes very funny.
I’ve worked with a lot of couples who have written their own wedding vows and I can tell you their family and friends appreciate the time and effort and it makes for a more personal exchange at that critical moment of the ceremony. Not to mention that if you have hired a professional videographer, personalized vows can become the perfect audio for the recap. When I got married four years ago our videographer (the incredible Peter Ferriero and his team at PF Films) used some of our own vows in our video and it’s something my wife and I love going back and enjoying regularly. Some of the jokes we made still bring smiles to our faces. Similarly, when Kris Abrahamsen got married, his wife Danielle had one of the sweetest lines during her vows, which is the highlight of their same day edit video (by the equally incredible Greg Lassik and his team at Endless Wave).
None of these moments happen if a couple just repeats the usual wedding vows. They only occur when a couple gets creative and asks themselves, “what do I want to promise my partner on our wedding day?” And that’s really all that wedding vows are. So instead of settling for the standard, “I ____, take you _____ . . .” think about putting some extra time in and writing your owns vows. Odds are you will enjoy the process of creating them and when it comes time to reciting them at your ceremony they will be your words from your heart. After all, isn’t that what the wedding day is all about?