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Designing Your Ceremony

Facing Your Guests (Modern Format)
Backs Turned (Traditional Format)
Examples of Wedding Vows
Environment
Ushers
Effective Seating
Aisle Runner or Petals
Children in Wedding Ceremonies
The Escorting of a Bride
Taking Parental Vows
The Use of Music
Using a Pedestal
Using a Wedding Carriage
A New Role For Grandparents
Readers
Wedding Ceremony Readings
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Ceremonies in Special Places
Ceremonies in Theme
Taking Your Ceremony to Others
Improvisation
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What Name Should I Use?
What if it Rains?
Fibbing Your Start Time
Ceremonies in Candlelight
The Reception Line

The Order of Events

Primary Options:
Read this First
The Unity Candle
Champagne Sharing
The Sand Ceremony
The Blessing Tree
Tying the Knot
Tasting the Elements
Using a Photomontage
The Giving of Roses

Options In Finale:
Butterfly Release
Dove Release
Balloon Release
Tossing Petals
Bubbles in a Wedding Ceremony
Applause Walk

The Five Rules:
Rule One
Rule Two
Rule Three
Rule Four
Rule Five

Advice on Photography
Advice on Wedding Coordinators
Death by Venue
An Invitation To Journalists

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Using Readers In Wedding Ceremonies
Wedding ceremony reader
Nathan and Briana listen to a reader who is humoring them at Lincoln Park Conservatory - Chicago, Il.

Personalities Of Connection

Notice how, in the photo above, the reader is overlapping the groom by a couple of inches? And notice how the groom's right hand is resting on the reader's shoulder showing the closeness of their friendship? This arrangement, what in stage talk is known as "blocking", makes for great photography too doesn't it?

Yet all of this was instructed by me and practiced during their rehearsal. Everything I do, and everything I teach in wedding ceremony design is calculated for effect.

Ceremony ReaderThe real reason I encourage the use of readers in a wedding ceremony is to connect you with your guests. That's why a reader should not come from the bridal party, for they are already participating. And a reader should not come from your immediate family either- we'll get to them with roses later on. Your readers, and you should have two of them- one a friend of the groom, and the other associated with the bride, should come ten or twelve rows deep out of your audience to show your guests that they too are contributing to you.

Readings are used in mid-ceremony, and should be no more than 4 sentences to 2 paragraphs in length. Your guests don't want "War and Peace." Readers are used in my ceremonies to connect you with your guests and to create wonderful photo op's like this with your dearest friends. The reading itself is secondary to this.

The reader at left gave his reading at floor level, as there was no room for him to stand on stage. The effect is the same; for the reason we use readers is to show all attending, that your family and friends are contributing to you. (as well as creating outstanding photo-ops for your photo album.


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