Why I had a Vows-First wedding

Guest post by Navkat
wedding vows
Photos by Tales of Light Photography. Enjoy the whole gallery from Devon and Ricky's romantic wedding.

I'm soooo tired of the wedding thing: the planning, the stressing, the fears that I'm not doing it right…and for what? By making my wedding unusual, authentic, personal, and different — okay, offbeat — I'm already almost guaranteeing that it won't meet everyone's expectations. That's why I'm making mine a vows-first wedding.

The whole point of the wedding is to satisfy a personal need for ritual and ceremony. That's what tells us, our friends, our family, and our community that this is relationship is different.

This is the One, and we want everyone to know it. A wedding is a life event worth marking with a ceremony that's personal.

Then why does the exchange of vows and the chosen ritual to seal the deal always have to be comprised of the same elements?

Why does it seem like even offbeat weddings are sometimes the same thing, just in different shapes and colors?

Think about it: You have a bride, a dress, a cake, rings, flowers and a bunch of maids or ushers. What about the whoopee-cushions and the official taco-fights?

If making the wedding “offbeat” means that it's more personalized and therefore authentic, why do the same type of elements need to keep repeating themselves, with different themes? Does that mean these elements are universals that apply to the majority of the population? Or is it just habit?

If we're really ready to rewrite the rules here, isn't it safe to say that the only ceremony element that really should remain universal is the actual exchange of vows?

Vows: the heart of the wedding

That's why I say this: Get the vows right first. Offbeat Bride has lots of great vow examples to inspire you. Perfect the vows first and let the rest of the wedding grow from there!

Maybe you picked out your ideal wedding gown when you were twelve, or your intended has been thinking about the cake ever since you first proposed.

…Nothing wrong with that! The gown and the cake won't clash with your vows.

In fact, by starting with your vows, you can bypass the whole question of whether your tablecloths should be teal or peacock, unless you really enjoy obsessing over those details.

But if you get the vows right, then the rest can follow on its own… Or not! It won't matter at that point, because you've already covered the most important part of the day.

So write your vows first!

More about how to write your wedding vows:

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