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Weddings – To Have and to Hold


The traditional wedding vows are beautifully worded and one would be hard-pressed to improve upon them from a writer’s perspective.

However, they are traditional and as a result, may not reflect contemporary values, your values or your fiancée’s values. Many couples today write their own wedding vows, or, just as likely, acquire them from any number of sources, including the Internet.

The vows, borrowed or original, should represent what is in your heart. Take the time to write and rewrite them. You should practice speaking them out loud. Don’t hesitate to make changes if the words don’t please the ear.

The traditional wedding march (processional) “Treulich gefuhrt”, from the opera Lohengrin, by the German composer Richard Wagner, is no longer sacrosanct. Many couples are opting for contemporary music or at the very least, something apart from the traditional.

If your plans include a recessional, you are not bound by tradition here either. While the traditional wedding march from Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream is a beautiful piece, it is not your only choice. Please yourself!

I recently watched a wedding processional on YouTube that was absolute fun! The music was contemporary and the ushers, bridesmaids, groomsmen, et al, danced down the aisle. It was anything but traditional and it was clear the guests were delighted. There are many similar videos on YouTube that you might consider reviewing for ideas.

As you plan your wedding, try to think outside the box. Explore your thoughts about this special day and what you want it to mean for you. This is your day! Don’t permit yourself to be a round peg, pummeled by convention, into a square hole. Weddings are supposed to be fun.

You will very likely have a wedding photographer, videographer, or both. Consider this lasting record of your wedding day as you formulate your plans. What may seem great now may be looked upon differently in five or ten years. In short, plan something you can show your children.

The venues for weddings have long ago moved from the traditional, so there is no reason to bow to constraints in other aspects of the ceremony.

Wedding venues are no longer confined to the staid church setting. People have been married while skydiving, deep sea diving, skateboarding, roller-skating, inline skating and skiing! There have been weddings in bowling alleys, clubs, baseball parks, swimming pools and football fields.

Traditional white weddings and other formal attire have also been challenged in the new millennium. Theme weddings are becoming increasingly popular and go hand-in-hand with other topics we’ve covered here. Weddings with western themes are popular throughout the Southwest; weddings with pop culture themes such as the Rocky Horror Picture Show are gaining in popularity. Themes I have seen include Angels, Sports, Fishing, Roman and Wizards! Imagine the dun you could have planning an ancient Roman wedding! It is, in many ways, easier to plan a themed wedding because you are not bound by precedent.

All this said, I would not discourage anyone from planning a traditional wedding. Traditional weddings became traditional for a reason.

Ronald Fisackerly does a lot of article writing for Skylighter. Skylighter sells party popper and homemade smoke bombs as well as a variety of other items.

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Listed: November 4, 2011 4:03 am