What is a wedding celebrant?
A wedding celebrant is a professionally trained and fully insured officiant, with the skills and experience in place to create completely bespoke and personalised ceremonies.
How does a ceremony with a wedding celebrant differ from a civil wedding ceremony?
A celebrant has no restrictions in terms of the content, format or style of a wedding, and can therefore be completely personalised. “My ceremonies contain many of the elements that you and your guests would expect to see at a wedding (exchange of vows and rings etc), but also lots of beautiful details about the couple and often guest involvement too”, says Jenny. This means the ceremony is warm and relaxed, and ensures we create lovely lasting memories for everyone attending.
Do we need to get legally married before we have a celebrant ceremony?
Yes, weddings with a celebrant will require a couple to arrange their legal paperwork separately from their actual ceremony. They can book the “signing room” at their local registration office, take two witnesses along, and just sign the documents saving their vows and rings, and everything else until their actual celebration date. This option saves both time and fees as you are literally just signing paperwork, and the registrar is not then required to print a ceremony script, or reserve space for you.
Can a ceremony with a wedding celebrant be held both indoors and outdoors?
It certainly can, and with trends for outdoor weddings on the rise, a celebrant can often unlock the potential within a dedicated wedding venue as celebrant ceremonies are not required to take place underneath a permanent licensed structure. “The vast majority of my weddings are outdoors (with marquees as a wet weather back up plan), and this provides couples with much more flexibility in terms of setting.” If you opt for an outdoor celebrant ceremony then you can position yourselves anywhere so long as the wedding venue has granted permission for you to do so. Why not take advantage of fantastic views at a venue, and have these as the backdrop to your day, and use the inside space for the wedding breakfast and evening reception? Explore all possibilities for ceremony settings at your venue and remember it does not need to be licensed if using a celebrant – you really can have your dream location!
Are there specifications in terms of where, when and what time a wedding celebrant ceremony can take place?
Not at all, you can select the time YOU want, without restriction on time slots or indeed location. Many couples will still opt for an early afternoon ceremony time but some couples prefer an altogether different plan for their celebrations and will perhaps have a roof terrace ceremony under the stars followed by cocktails and dinner for example. More and more couples are thinking outside of the box and doing away with tradition, and indeed opt for something a little more ‘unexpected’ and unique to them. “I have a fully portable wedding PA system and so I can literally work anywhere, be it in the middle of a field or by a lake, miles from mains power. My equipment is all wireless too so there are no messy leads either!” A celebrant wedding ceremony offers couples complete flexibility!
How long does a ceremony with a wedding celebrant take?
This varies, depending on the content of your ceremony. “The vast majority of mine are around half an hour and are created with a fantastic flow. My speaking parts are always creatively punctuated with guest readings or involvement in some other way so that the ceremony feels like everyone there has a role in the proceedings, and indeed in supporting the couple. It becomes a lovely experience rather than someone just standing and reading to a group of people which can otherwise feel quite cold by comparison.”
Can guests do readings in a ceremony with a wedding celebrant?
Of course! “I actively encourage it, and have lots of lovely ways in which this can be done. Guests can select a popular piece of poetry online, or they might want to write something personal about the couple that is shared on the day, but there are lots of other options too. I work with my couples and ensure that the content accurately reflects who they are, and that those doing readings are comfortable with everything on the day too.
I love to use guest involvement to really add something a little bit special to the ceremony, and depending on the couple, we can add elements of religion, acknowledge a cultural background, or even a family tradition. I have included a Sri Lankan lamp lighting ritual into a ceremony, numerous Celtic mini-handfasting variations, the creation of marriage time capsules, sand ceremonies and a whole host of other lovely activities too! You really can make it truly personal, and unique to you.”
Can any type of music be played during a celebrant ceremony?
Yes, indeed. Your celebrant can talk you through various music options with you in advance. Why not walk down the aisle to your favourite song, or sign your certificate with your favourite band playing in the background? There are no restrictions when it comes to music during your celebrant ceremony at all and so you can opt for something that you both love, and not feel limited in your choices.