November 7, 2019

How to Plan Your Wedding Ceremony: Key Ceremony Elements

You might consider your ceremony to be the most important part of your day. If that’s the case, you’ll need to know how to plan your wedding ceremony to reflect that importance. There are multiple things to do before your ceremony to make sure it runs smoothly. By creating a checklist, you’ll accomplish everything that’s important ahead of time. In today’s post, I’ll cover exactly how to plan your wedding ceremony. The greatest thing you can do, though, is to hire an experienced wedding planner who will make the entire celebration as smooth as possible.

How to Plan Your Wedding Ceremony: Key Ceremony Elements 

Book Your officiant

Know what kind of officiant you want. You have many options whether it be a minister, pastor, a professional secular officiant, or a friend. If you want a friend or family member to officiate you, inform them that they’ll need to become ordained online prior to the ceremony. Be sure to contact the city or county clerk to see if they will need any extra documentation from you so that you can officially be wed. You can never be too careful!

Bride and groom first kiss in front of a Pergola wrapped in greenery with blush flowers on the side columns and hanging blush and ivory flowers in the center. Rancho Bernardo Inn Aragon lawn wedding ceremony. Film photo by Cavin Elizabeth Photography 


You’ll want to know all of the traditions that need to be performed at your wedding. This might include songs, readings, cultural traditions, etc. Make a list of everything that will be included and how long it will take. Share this information with your wedding planner so that they can help make sure everything gets included and runs smoothly for your full wedding timeline.

Also, don’t forget to inform your photographer of any components of the ceremony that aren’t standard. I personally like to know when to expect anything special, so that I am prepared for anything out of the ordinary.

Bridesmaids in tropical palm leaf print short dresses carrying bouquets with palm leaves and pink anthurium. Ceremony white pergola site with large white planters filled with palm leaves and paddle cactus plants covered in blush and fuchsia pink flowers. Riviera Palm Springs Wedding by Cavin Elizabeth Photography 


Ensure that your guests will be comfortable during the ceremony. If you know it’s going to be a warm, sunny day, consider putting them in the shade or giving them a cold beverage. It’s also a good idea to make sure the chairs that they are sitting in will be comfortable for the duration of your wedding ceremony. You want to keep your guests happy, considering the effort they’ve made on their part to attend your celebration.

Ceremony with floral covered gate at Temecula Wedding at Villa De Amore, Cavin Elizabeth Photography 

Write your vows

The last tip for how to plan your wedding ceremony is to write your own vows. Put a lot of time into writing your vows for your significant other. This is going to be shared with not just your fiancé, but all of your guests. You’ll want it to be one of the most important “speeches” you’ll ever make and also that it’s genuine and sounds like you. If you’re usually someone who likes to crack jokes, consider throwing a few in to show your personality as well as your true feelings for the person you’re marrying.

Couple kissing in front of pink fireplace with blue and golden tiles for ceremony backdrop adorned with large floral installations. Marchesa couture gown with blush feathers, gold lines, and floral embellishments. Honey and Beekeeper Inspired Wedding on sunrise terrace patio at Rancho Valencia on film by Cavin Elizabeth Photography