A Guide to Writing your Own Vows
Personal touches can be added to every detail of your big day, and what better a way to show your love and commitment to your partner than to write your own wedding vows? A poetic concoction of tenderness, passion, and humour; personalised vows are an extremely romantic start to any wedding. For busy couples amid wedding preparations, here is a helpful guide to writing your own vows.
While writing your own vows may seem a straightforward and effortless task, you will need to give yourselves plenty of time to get organised. Before getting stuck in to the writing, it’s essential to check with your ceremony officiant or registrant that personalised vows are allowed. Certain religious ceremonies may require the recital of traditional vows, while other officiants may want to review your vows beforehand.
Take time to reflect
Don’t leave everything until the last minute. The closer it gets to your big day, the more nervous and excited you and your partner will become, and you may not give your vows the attention they deserve. Once you’ve cleared your personalised vows with your ceremony officiant, take time to reflect on your relationship to work out what you wish to say. Contemplate your relationship from start to present, and for inspiration, focus on:
- The first time you met
- Cherished moments spent together
- Qualities you most admire in each other
- Hopes and dreams you hold for your future
- Promises you want to make
Bullet pointing and compiling lists will enable you to build on your ideas and put your feelings onto paper.
Set the tone and structure of your vows
Setting ground rules before you begin will help you iron out the specifics of your vows. When discussing the tone, you will want to consider your audience: humour and inside jokes are great for small audiences of close family and friends, but may borderline on cryptic or a little dull for larger audiences. Always remember that your vows show your commitment, and while humour may feel like an easy way to express your feelings, a serious approach may be more appropriate.
For the structure of your vows, explore ideas by recalling powerful poems, memorable film lines, favourite song, and traditional vows. Don’t be afraid to use prominent works and adapt as necessary. Remember the length of your vows when deciding on a structure; keeping it short and sweet usually works well, but if you have more to say, be brave and say it.
Most importantly, you must be yourself when writing your own vows. Speak from the heart and be natural – remember that your other half knows you well and will immediately recognise little white lies or even insincerity. Whether you’re hopeless romantics or severely silly, don’t be embarrassed to say what you really feel.