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When it comes to planning your wedding, there is so much to think about it and more often than not, it can be overwhelming. One of the things that was most important to my now-husband Stu and I, was that our wedding reflected us. Weddings can invoke a lot of tradition and expectation, but you can include all those little pieces of ‘you’ to truly make the day your own. There are big things and little things, the subtle and the dramatic, but you can sneak so much of yourselves into your wedding when you really think about it and get creative.
Music is an enormous part of the day. Most civil ceremonies need at least 4 songs, one for the entrance, one for the exit, and up to 3 during the ceremony itself. The songs for the ceremony play whilst all the official paperwork bits are being taken care of, so you have maybe 10 minutes of music to play with. Stu and I are huge music lovers; we love gigs and live music, so it was essential that this reflected us. Most couples have at least one song that is special to them, and they tend to save their most special song for their first dance, but the ceremony music will stay with you forever too. If you both love the same genre of music then picking songs is easier, but if not, why not go 50/50? Inspiration for our songs came in different places. I walked in to ‘Thunder’s Love Walked In’. I timed the entrances of the bridesmaids so that I would enter as the chorus hit, and every time I hear that build up I get chills. We left to Stu’s favourite band Metallica, ‘Nothing Else Matters’. That was an easy choice. The other two were more difficult. But inspiration can strike at the most unexpected moments. At a festival watching a Guns N Roses cover band, they played album track ‘Rocket Queen’, and Stu serenaded me with it. We both knew in that moment it was a wedding song. The final came when we went to see the acoustic musician we had booked to play, INXS ‘Never Tear Us Apart’ was part of his set list and it was just right. The music doesn’t have to be serious, it can be silly and sublime. We played Richard Cheese during our reception. Lounge music covers of heavy metal songs, subtle, but those who were really paying attention found it hilarious!
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In the décor you can sneak so much personality in too. Do you collect a certain something? Make it part of your table centrepieces! Do you have a mutual love of dinosaurs? Make them a part of your flowers. I collect succulents, so our flowers focused on them. We both love the darker things in life, so skulls were the centrepieces. One of the first things we ever bonded over was a mutual love of the film True Romance, so our cake topper read ‘You’re so cool’, a quote from the film.
Your vows are another way to really personalise your ceremony. We both wrote our own. Well… I stole lines from all our favourite TV shows and movies and twisted them to make them my own, and Stu wrote his own. There aren’t many rules about what you can and can’t say in a civil ceremony. Hell, I even swore in mine because it was a movie quote! You can’t have any mention of anything that could be considered religious, but other than that you can do what you like. I spoke in Dothraki, we quoted films, we made jokes, we made it our own. It’s a chance to share a real moment with each other, it feels like there’s no one else in the room, so go for it!
Depending on how traditional you want to be, you can add little bits of yourselves to every part of your wedding if you want to. From custom shoes, to your favourite colours, from wearing your Great-Grandmother’s pearls, to ending the night in a mosh pit to Rage Against the Machine, your wedding day is your day, and you can truly make it your own with a little work!
All photography by ClickClickBang Photography, featuring Stu and I on our wedding day.