Our third module is dedicated to organizing probably the most important part of a wedding – a ceremony, which has a lot of moving pieces so make sure you download and use all the checklists and templates. We will discuss:

  • How to design a wedding ceremony. Many people simply overlook the ceremony design in the wedding planning, which is a shame as the wedding ceremony is one of the most important parts of the day!
  • Choosing a wedding date and time of year. The vast majority of weddings are held on a Saturday in Spring or Summer (September is the most popular month). However, you certainly don’t need to stick to this day, month or season.
  • Choosing the wedding venue. If the bride and groom are religious, it is highly likely they will want to be married in their regular place of worship. If they are not religious, or they prefer a non-traditional ceremony, they may already have an idea of where they would like to be married, or they may ask you for some ideas.
  • Selecting the wedding celebrant or minister. If your clients are members of a religious faith, they will likely want to choose a minister or Priest from their place of worship. However they may opt to choose a celebrant from no particular religion to marry them.
  • Planning the ceremony wows, exchanges, and rituals. If your clients are religious and are to be married in their place of worship, there will likely be customs, traditions and rituals that need to be included with their ceremony.
  • Selecting wedding music. Music can be a beautiful and moving part of any wedding, and personalised selection of music can add much in terms of meaning for the couple.
  • Obtaining the marriage certificate. To be married in the United States, your bride and groom must obtain a Marriage Licence. The state issuing the license determines who may legally marry. It is necessary to obtain the license before any ceremony, whether civil or religious.
  • Coordinating the ceremony rehearsal. A rehearsal can be your chance to iron out any last minute wrinkles before the ceremony proper. Rehearsals are usually held the day before the wedding, but can be held earlier if it suits the parties involved better. You should schedule around two hours for the rehearsal, and it should be held at the ceremony venue.
  • The ceremony processional, recessional, and receiving line. Often a wedding planner is hired to direct and oversee a wedding rehearsal and ceremony. To be able to effectively do this, you will need to know how a ‘typical’ ceremony flows and what is involved in the processional, recessional and receiving line.
  • Planning the reception activities, including speeches, dance, cake cutting ceremony, bouquet and garter toss, and of course tearing it all down and cleaning it up.
  • Finally, we will discuss working with vendors. As a wedding planner, you will likely be working with many types of vendors and it will be useful for you to know in advance how to choose the good ones, how to negotiate with them, coordinate them, and what to do if something goes wrong.

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