Unique Wedding IdeasPosted: September 26, 2011
The ideas below have been collected to assist you in making your wedding a little bit more unique, please use them as a guide for your imagination to make your wedding one that not only you will remember, but your guests will as well.
Candles can play an important role in setting the mood you wish to have for your ceremony. The Unity Candle was traditionally used as an outward sign of the joining of the bride and groom in matrimony, some extensions of the Unity Candle tradition can be:
- A single candle lit at the entrance of the Bride and Groom and before the welcome to guests. The candle would represent those unable to attend your special day as a remembrance of their part in bringing you to this day. This is especially appropriate for deceased members of your families or special friends and relatives unable to make the trip.
- Give each guest a candle at the entrance of the ceremony (or have one at each place setting during the reception). Have the guests light their candle from the unity candle after the bride and groom has lit it together during the intent portion of the ceremony. This gives them the reason they are at your wedding, because they have been a part of each of you, this ceremony further bonds them to you both.
Guest Book Alternatives
- Pass around a blank journal book, ask the guest to write their own memory of the bride and groom.
- Instead of the traditional guest book, have a framed canvas for your guest to sign. This is something you can hang in your home together as a unique memory of your wedding day. Leave blank squares to mount snap shots, from the ceremony to make it into a collage.
- Have a friend or a family member at the door with a Polaroid instant camera. Take photos of each guest as they enter, and have them sign the photo. That way you really get to see everyone of your guests!
- Mail each guest a guestbook page (a scrapbook page would work well for this as it can be bound together later.) They can take their time and create, write something special. The guest then bring the page with them to be placed in the guestbook. What an awesome memory, very personal and very unique.
Bouquet Dance: – here is a alternative to tossing the bouquet to the single gals. This is great if everyone you know is married, or if you are doing a vow-renewal, or if you would like to honor those who have been married the longest.
- Gather all the married couples to dance. Eliminate those married less than 5 years, then less than 10 years, etc. until you have a couple still dancing who was married the longest. They are presented with the bouquet.
Break-away bouquet -
Each mini-bouquet with a charm, each charm has its own meaning(each charm based from the countless myths and folklore). When thrown the bouquet breaks apart, and it is also a surprise which charm (or wish) each maid will receive. So no more mad massacres at the reception! Well not as much of one (depending on how many maids you have at the reception), since there would be several bouquets going into the air. (The charms are a nineteenth century American custom)
- How to do? Some florist know how to do this, but even an easy DIY project. Make several mini bouquets of flowers (hand tie the stems, and attach a “cake” charm to each bundle) gather the mini bundles then tie a wide ribbon around the group (do not knot it), make it so when you throw it you can hold onto one end of the ribbon and set the mini bundles free.
- Make the mini-bouquets even more meaningful, use floral meanings, create a bundle with specific meaning and charm (with coordinating or complimenting meanings), attach a small card explaining the floral meaning of the bundle and the charm’s meaning.
If it is an early morning, or late-evening wedding, carrying lanterns or candles is beautiful, make sure that this is ok with the location to do this (some locations have restrictions on such things). Be careful of the use of ribbons or flowers around open flame, you might want to just keep them plain.
Mini individual baskets, vases, or other holders with a small bundle of flowers in each, gather them together to forma larger looking bouquet. Each mini bouquet can be taken home by guests. Instead of baskets or vases, bind the stems of each bouquet, cut the bottoms evenly, let them stand on their own.
A single flower at each place setting
Wrap around the stem paper with some unique wedding traditions (per your culture, or at random). This might encourage conversations amongst guest who are not previously acquainted. (A friend made each table represent a culture, and had meanings of that cultures traditions written down at each place setting.)
Potted plant as a centerpiece
This often is much less expensive, it is also to be enjoyed much longer. You can also do the break-away centerpiece idea here too, with several potted plants gathered together, you can also tier smaller ones to make more of an impact. Paint each pot, or cover in fabric or tulle and tie a wide ribbon around the center. If the plant is all greenery, stick some silk flowers in it or live singles strategically into the pot. Another idea is to add some crystal marbles glued to copper rods and stuck in the plant too. Add mini battery operated lights for some sparkle. Another sparkly idea, pretty beads from a craft store, string them together and weave through the plant. Go wild with creativity.
One favorite is giving a small seedling of a tree, have each guest plant this on their property, or the property of a friend, or family member to remember you both as the years pass.
Pile the Baked Goods
Take the “wedding cake” back to its roots, as a pile of pastries and baked goods. This can be as pretty or unusual as you are. This can save money and also goes with the reason to have a wedding, which is to create a wonderful memory not just a cookie cutter ceremony.
- You can have all identically decorated individual cupcakes. Pile them up elegantly on cake plates. Several tiers will look beautiful.
- Assortment of cupcakes, different flavors and styles. Again the tiered cake stands would look excellent. Or you can use a combination of candle sticks and platters to create stands. Decorate each cupcake with a flower from your bouquet.
- Go completely for tradition and have your guests each bring different pastries and baked goods and have them pile them up as the original idea of the wedding cake came from! This can be just your direct family and friends, also have an explanation posted at the table for others who are not aware of the origin of the wedding cake. This would definitely be something to photograph, completely unique and very memorable!
Receptions and Entertainment
- Hire a caricaturist to do caricatures of your guests.
- A High Tea for a reception instead of the regular dinner. This is very elegant, and since not typical, would be very well remembered.
- A dessert reception, saves many bucks, but again would be memorable. Serve opulent and unique desserts, this goes perfect with a beautiful candlelight wedding! Be sure to note to the guests that it is a dessert reception, you do not want a crowd of cranky and hungry guests at your wedding!
- If your attendants have significant others or spouses at the wedding, instead of having them all sitting on display at the head table create a intimate table for two (the bride and groom) and let the attendants sit with their spouses or significant other.
- To encourage guests to dance, assign each table a love song, when the band (or DJ) plays that song, that table should get up and dance. You will likely know whether this would work or not with your crowd, but it is a neat idea.
- Have request slips at each table for the band (or DJ) to play, by either artist or song title or time period. This gives the guests an opportunity to request and dance to their favorite music.
- Balloon artist to make balloons, especially effective if a number of kids will be at your reception.
Total Wedding Themes
How about a picnic? Bridesmaids in either gingham or floral or in all white (make it Victorian), each carrying a basket, instead of or with wildflowers. Have this in a park, the food, of course would be picnic fare! (Very casual, affordable and relaxing!)
- Ceremony could be held there too, no need for guest to travel from ceremony to reception. But it would be nice even if you did decide to go from a ceremony location to the picnic.
- Have a picnic table with picnic baskets each containing a gingham cloth, plates, cups, etc., and the meal (fried chicken, corn on the cob, cubed melons and beverages, and a candle, of course). Formalize it with a French picnic, assorted cheeses, fruit and of course, a good bottle of wine! The guest choose the basket (they are all the same, so it does not matter) and they choose where they wish to sit, by a tree, out in the open, etc.
- The basket might be $20 each (including the utensils and dishes), and this would be per two people.
- The food you could pick up prepared at the grocery deli, if you don’t feel up to preparing it yourself. There would be no fee for flatware, dishes, or hall.
- No centerpieces to worry about, nature would take care of the beauty naturally.
- No seating arrangements, or table cards to deal with. Not to mention, how relaxing!
- The wedding cake could be tiered cake stands with slices of pie on it (apple, blueberry, peach, etc).
Hayride Wedding, a great fall themed reception! You could have the bridal party brought in on a hayride, and keep it around for reception entertainment (perhaps even pony rides for the kids). Hay bales for seating (use blankets over the bales, hay can hurt). Favors wrapped with bandanas.
- Groomsmen gifts could be personalized branding irons (very effective if they enjoy grilling).
- Bouquets would be wildflowers (add some wheat in there too!) tie with raffia or narrow ribbon.
- End the reception with guests singing “Happy Trails (to you)”.
Winter weddings can be awesome!
- Silver is a dreamy crisp accent. For Christmas time add some bells to the bouquets. Sprinkle silver glitter on white and icy blue flowers, or over white tulle covering the bouquet. The maids carrying wreaths instead of candles or lanterns.
- Or you can take it in a totally different direction and do a tropical theme i the middle of winter, or an indoor garden party, use your imagination to make you day as it should be – one which speaks of your personality!
A pool and BBQ, even if you don’t have a pool, and no one you know has one, check out a local public or private pool. See if you can rent it for a Pool and Barbeque party. If you are close enough to a beach that would obviously work too, check restrictions, and see if you could do a night bonfire!
- The food – typical barbeque
- The dress – typical cookout ensembles
- Groomsmen in coordinating Hawaiian shirts and Bermuda shorts
- Maids could wear sundresses
- Instead of bouquets, opt for leis. If you want to be silly, go with inflatable flowers.
- No seating arrangements needed, nor table cards! Bathing suits recommended!
- Favors could be mini-super soakers,. Click sun screen bottles, sunglasses, beach hats, mini-personal battery operated fans, or other fun back yard toys – inflatable pool toys or beach balls.
A surprise party is a neat twist and is a surprise for the guests. Invite them to a birthday party which is really your wedding. Theme the event as such making it very casual and simply a fun party! Buffet tables with normal party fare (chips, crackers and cheese, mini-sausage, grilling dogs and burgers).
JUST MAKE IT PERSONAL!
Make a theme based on something near and dear to both of you, a place, perhaps where you met, sport or activity, movie or theatre, a time period (the twenties, sixties, seventies, eighties… even the future), military, or based on your honeymoon, your own ethnic background, or dream place (Ireland, Italy, Iceland…) use the culture or traditions from those places as part of your ceremony, or the decor, or ethnic costume. Just have fun!
Miscellaneous Other Great Ideas:
Keep everyone (friends, family, guests and attendants) current with a blog, or website, such as http://www.wedplan.net, which offers free website, vendor and other planning services.
- If the group does not know each other well, add photos and bios on each member of the wedding party. Ask parents and family members to post memories of the couple. Everyone loves hearing how a couple met!
- Add a calendar of events, like alterations by such a date, tuxedo fittings, or tux pickup by this date.
- If people are coming from a distance include some local info (things to do, places of interest, places to stay, maps, etc.)
- Don’t forget the gift wish list or registry – always appreciated by both the couple and gift givers. Make sure if you do register, you give the registration information, where and how to, etc.