Writing your own marriage wedding vows can be a daunting task, but with some helpful tips and preparation, you’ll be able to cross this item off your pre-wedding to-do list with ease!
If you and your soon-to-be spouse have chosen to write your own vows, you likely want your love story to shine through. Written vows allow you to speak directly to your significant other about your love, and they can feel a bit more personal. They also allow for customization; add light-hearted jokes here and there or work in a reference to your favorite book or movie. As you prepare to tie the knot, keep these “must haves” in mind to make your wedding vow writing win.
Before You Start Writing Your Wedding Vows
The most important thing to do before starting to draft your vows is to get on the same page with your significant other.
Sit down and discuss how you both imagine the ceremony.
- Decide how long the wedding vows should be.
- Agree on the tone. Will your vows be sentimental, funny, or a combination?
- Are you both on board with including inside jokes?
- Will you incorporate any traditional or religious vows?
Once you’ve gotten the basics hammered out, it’s time to start writing!
Tips To Make The Writing Flow
Avoid procrastinating on this assignment. Several weeks before the ceremony, start drafting what you’ll say. This will give you time to revise, practice, and feel confident in what you plan to say.
Create a love brain dump.
Rather than trying to write your masterpiece immediately, start with a free-form list. What do you most love about your person? What did you think when you first saw him or her? When did you realize you wanted to spend your life with him/her? What makes the two of you work? What do you most want to tell this person as you pledge your life to him/her? This list will provide a lot of material you can pull from as you start to write complete sentences.
Read lots of examples to find your “style.”
The internet has endless samples of wedding vows, from classic to wacky. Spend some time searching for examples you like and see if you can incorporate portions or features into your own. You may want to start with a tried-and-true format, as well. Two popular and timeless options are
- Start with an anecdote about your spouse that segues into why you love them. Then, circle back to that same story after you’ve made your promises.
- Use the four-part outline: affirm your love, praise your partner, offer promises, and close with a final vow.
Find inspiration in your favorites.
If you or your spouse love a particular genre, author, musician or series, see if you can include a reference or line in your wedding vows. Bonus points if the two of you enjoy this inspiration together.
Allow some cheese.
Even if you’re not typically sentimental or emotional, your wedding day is the one day that it’s allowed–heck, even encouraged. Let yourself speak from the heart.
Rehearse out loud. Yes, it feels weird at first, but the best way to hear how it sounds is to actually hear it. This will help you catch any awkward wordings and pace yourself to better know how long your vows will be.
Find ONE supportive critic.
Ask one trusted friend or family member to listen and give feedback. Your chosen listener should know the two of you as a couple and help you add anything you may have missed. Avoid crowdsourcing, though. Vow-writing is definitely a time to avoid too many cooks in the kitchen.
Keep your vows “secret” until the big day.
Even if you plan to see your significant other the morning of the wedding, don’t share your vows until the ceremony. If you’ve done your prep work, you won’t have to worry about your vows not “matching.”
Think about optics.
Consider how your wedding vows will look on your big day. Do you want to hold lined or printed
paper, or would you rather insert your vows in a small book of some sort? Find a small journal at a bookstore and tape the vows in, or check out online stores. Etsy has a lot of great customizable options you’ll want to cherish forever.
Focus on your spouse.
Above all else, remember that your vows are promises you’re making to the person you love. No matter what, you’re pledging to face life as a team. If you feel nervous or overwhelmed, look at the person you love and remember why you’re writing these vows.
Your wedding day should be filled with joy, love, and happiness. Follow these vow writing tips to take the pressure off, and go get yourself hitched!