Wedding ceremony traditions use to include things like the unity candle, releasing of doves or butterflies, to even communion, but the traditions they are a changing.
Here are what some couples are doing to update and overhaul the wedding ceremony traditions.
Wedding Ceremony Tradition #1: The unity candle
Overhauled: The reversed unity candle
In the normal unity candle ceremony the mom's of both the groom and bride light two separate candles. The bride and groom then take both of those candles and light one big candle to symbolize the unity of the two families.
According to Kristen O'Gorman Klein in her article 10 Meaningful Touches for Your Ceremony (Bridalguide.com), in the reversed unity candle ceremony each guest is given a candle, the bride and groom light a single candle and start by passing the flame to their bridesmaids and groomsmen. The wedding party then turns around and starts passing the flame to the guests until all candles have been lit resulting in a stunning ambiance of light.
Wedding Ceremony Tradition #2: Sand Blending
Overhauled: Beer Blending
For this tradition instead of mixing together sand of various colors into a vase or glass container as a symbol of your unity, Kristen says you take two different kinds of beers (a dark beer and a light beer) and blend them together and drink. With this overhauled tradition, the officiant will describe the beer and relate it's qualities to the bride and groom's personalities. The bride and groom then blend the beers together in a glass making their own blend and drink.
Wedding Ceremony Tradition #3: The Vows
Overhauled: The New Vows
The vows are very sacred and are usually only between the bride and groom, but in this tradition the bride and groom aren't the only one's taking vows, the family and friends are too.
With this new vows tradition, after the bride and groom have exchanged their vows the officiant addresses the guests, “Now that you, beloved friends and family of the couple (names), have heard them recite their vows, do you promise, from this day forward, to encourage them and love them, to give them your guidance, and to support them in being steadfast in the promises that they have made?” (Kristen O'Gorman Klein, Bridalguide.com)
I love this one, marriage is difficult and I think this tradition is very powerful and speaks volumes knowing that so many people are fighting for you and your marriage.
Wedding Ceremony Tradition #4: Seating
Overhauled: Ditch Sides and Go Round
Ok, so this one isn't so much of a wedding ceremony tradition, but I like it. Typically, more so in the past than in current day weddings, the bride's family would sit on one side and the grooms family and friends would sit on the other side during the ceremony. Why not switch things up a bit and go with circular seating.
Set the ceremony venue up with the stage in the middle and the guest seating wrapping all the way around the two of you. The will not only create a more intimate atmosphere, but it allows your guests to see and hear what's taking place from all angles. You can even take this idea and expand it out to others such as spiral seating or even all around ceremony seating. Check out Bridget Clegg's article 7 Seriously Creative Ceremony Seating Ideas.