When you’re not a gushy romantic, wedding planning can feel like trying to force a square peg into a round hole—and you’re the square peg. Suddenly you’re expected to fawn over florals and chiffon. But what if you’re simply not that kind of bride? What happens to wedding planning when you haven’t dreamt of your wedding since you were eight years old?
Writing personalized wedding vows can be stereotyped as overly poetic diatribes that only the deeply romantic recite. But here’s the deal—you don’t have to enjoy binge-watching Sandra Bullock and Meg Ryan movies to write personalized wedding vows. The entire concept of writing personalized wedding vows is to be just that—personal to you.
If you want to express how you feel to your fiancé on your wedding day but can’t stand the thought of sounding like a sappy cliché, then this vow writing guide is for you.
Write Vows that Sound Like You: The biggest turn-off to personalized wedding vows can be when they sound exaggeratedly fanciful. You’re not trying to mirror the art of Shakespeare. Your vows should just sound like you!
How do you write wedding vows that actually sound like something you’d say? You talk about your love before you write about it.
To do this, you’re going to interview yourself. Turn on the voice recording feature on your phone and answer questions out loud.
Here are a few questions you can use to interview yourself:
· Why do you enjoy spending time with your fiancé?
· When you think about this relationship compared to others you’ve had, how is this one different?
· How have you changed since being with your fiancé?
· When you think about your fiancé, what makes you most grateful?
· How do you envision your future together?
Keep your answers conversational as if you’re sharing with a close friend. Once you’ve finished interviewing yourself, you are going to transcribe the entire recording by typing out every word you said.
The greatest part of this process? You will get plenty of words down on paper about your relationship without feeling pressured to write a romantic story. Now the initial work of getting thoughts down is completed. And best of all, every word sounds like you.
Edit Your Notes: After completing the interview, you will have lots of notes. However, they’re not exactly wedding ceremony ready just yet. Next, you’ll edit your interview transcript to create your actual wedding vows.
How do you edit these notes? Start by identifying sentences and anecdotes you’d like to keep for your vows. Reread your notes and underline or highlight the parts that you really like. Delete everything else.
Now that you’ve narrowed down your notes, it’s time to form these thoughts into a more polished version for your wedding vows.
Move around sentences like you would furniture in a living room. Where does every thought belong? Perhaps you choose to kick off your vows by describing what makes you most grateful in your relationship and you close by reciting how you envision your future together.
Next, expand on ideas where it’s needed. Maybe during the interview, you only touched on what makes your relationship unique but now that you have that idea started on paper, you can write about it in more detail.
Include More of Your Personality: The key to making personalized wedding vows is to consider ways to highlight your unique personality into the writing.
What’s your favorite song? Can you include some of the song lyrics within your wedding vows?
What about a movie you two enjoy watching together? I once worked with a couple who had a mutual love of Star Wars. They threw a Star Wars themed wedding and we found ways to integrate their theme into their wedding vows.
Consider what unique forms of art you could use as inspiration for your wedding vows.
Practice Reading Your Vows Out Load: If your wedding vows should sound like you, then you need to practice reading them to ensure that they do. I recommend recording a video of yourself as you recite your personalized wedding vows.
Watch the video. What do you notice? Are you using any words that you wouldn’t normally say? Is the length of your sentences in line with your typical speaking pattern?
Watching yourself may feel a bit awkward at first but it will help you dial in your vow delivery.
Once you identify any areas for improvement, make the necessary edits to your vows. Then reread them on video again. You’ll notice an immediate improvement. Even more than that, you will feel the difference. When your vows sound like you, it becomes easier to confidently deliver them.
Work with a Professional Wedding Vow Writer: Not all of us are writers. It can be challenging to take what’s in your heart and express it into personalized wedding vows without sounding cliché.
This doesn’t mean you need to give up on the idea of doing custom wedding vows for your ceremony. It may just mean that you need outside help. As the creator of Wedding Words, I offer vow writing services to brides just like you.
Let’s connect to see how we can collaborate to create wedding vows that capture your unique voice and personality.