As a professional wedding officiant, I arrive to your ceremony at least an hour early. That means I get to see the finishing touches of the hair and makeup team (if you’re not doing a first look and already ready). The ladies are often in colorful robes, drinking champagne and laughing at inside jokes. I get to observe the catering staff and wedding planner finalizing the tablescapes and decor. And, I get to check in with the groom and his groomsmen (in an opposite-sex wedding) to see how they’re getting ready. Sometimes it’s loud music, shots of whiskey and maybe even lawn games. It’s such a relaxed and happy time!
Want to make this time extra special?
There’s a new trend I’ve been noticing at many of my weddings which makes this time, between being ready and the ceremony starting, even more special. It’s the sharing of love letters just before the wedding ceremony!
Writing a love letter and having it delivered to your sweetheart before the ceremony is a wonderful way to express your feelings without having to do it in front of all your guests.
Which makes this idea absolutely fabulous for shy couples!
Many of my couples say they want to write their own vows but cringe at the thought of reading them aloud in front 150 wedding guests. [There are an equal number of couples that revel in being on “stage” and shouting their love from the rooftops!] Reading wedding vows aloud is public speaking, but even more emotional and vulnerable. Does holding a microphone and reading aloud your deepest feelings give you nightmares?
Say all the things you want to say to your beloved on your wedding day!
You can even use this idea of sharing a love letter before the ceremony in place of writing personal vows.
How To Do It
There are many different ways you can share these love letters:
Write a beautiful note inside a greeting card.
Write an actual hand-written letter on fancy paper.
Use an old-timey typewriter and peck out a love letter.
Write a love note and fold it like you did when you were passing notes in elementary school.
Record a short video of you reading a poem or love letter to your sweetie and then text it.
Tuck a love note inside a pre-wedding gift and have your best person hand-deliver it.
Either way you do it, it’s a really sweet way to set the tone right before your ceremony.
Tips for making it work
To make this a fun and festive part of the day, you’ll want to plan this into your wedding day timeline.
Write the love letter in advance so you’re not scrambling for what to write 30 minutes before your wedding.
Tell your wedding planner and make sure time is set aside in the wedding day timeline for this special moment.
Have your best person hand-deliver the note at just the right time (after the other person is fully dressed!).
Tell your wedding photographer and wedding videographer so they can capture the moment on film. That way you can watch it later and see the joy you brought your honey!
Take a deep breath and really take your time reading the note you receive. Drink in the love and let it calm you and put you in the right mood right before you walk down the aisle.
If you’re given a wearable gift accompanied by the love letter, put it on!
Have your wedding planner or best person tuck the note away in a safe place so you can reread it later and cherish it forever.
Consider framing the letters and adding them to your home décor so you can be reminded of how much you’re loved every day of your life!
Even if you choose to share a pre-ceremony love letter you can still write and read your own wedding vows during your wedding ceremony.