As you prepare for your summer wedding ahead (or any season coming up!), it’s time to start thinking about those little details that can get overlooked until the last minute but will matter to you on the day of. One of those details honors loved ones that are no longer with you. Whether you want to pay tribute to family generations before you, you’ve lost someone very close to you, you’ll be walking down the aisle without a parent, or anyone else that matters to you, now is a chance to give them a loving nod. There are many ways you can memorialize loved ones at your wedding. Here are six ideas, big and small.
1. Wrap your bouquet with a locket.
If you want to walk down the aisle with your mom or dad and they are no longer with you or can’t be at the wedding, consider tying a photo around the base of your bouquet inside a locket. Attaching a beautiful piece of jewelry with something sentimental inside will remind you that they are with you in spirit.
2. Place a sign on their ceremony seat.
An “in loving memory” sign, personal memento, flower or all of the above placed at a reserved ceremony seat for a family member who has passed is a nice way to publicly share their importance. It keeps the chair empty in their honor.
3. Ask your officiant to make mention of the person(s).
If the officiant is referencing your parents in the ceremony, discuss with them ahead of time about mentioning the person or people that are no longer with you and how you can include them in a way that you feel good about.
4. Place a flower at the altar or light a candle during the ceremony.
You can even incorporate your loved one into the ceremony if you like through a candle that you light or simply placing a special bloom on the altar with you.
5. Incorporate a symbol of them in a special place.
If there’s something personal to you or them that reminds you of your loved one, share it publicly or privately. If butterflies are a symbol of their remembrance, embroider the motif into the inside of your gown, include a paper one in your bouquet, weave a small butterfly into your design or even release them at the ceremony (though this isn’t ideal, the release of them doesn’t always go as planned). Whatever the symbol is, find small (or big) ways to give loved ones a nod through the use of that object in your event. No one even needs to know why you chose it, if you decide to keep that private.
6. Carry something significant of theirs.
Perhaps your “something old” belonged to a grandmother or female in your family who has passed on. For grooms, carry a handkerchief, pocket watch or even wear a pair of family cufflinks to remember your family member no longer with you. Keeping something close by can often bring comfort.
No matter how you remember your loved ones on your wedding day, do what feels good to you. This can be a public display or a very private one. It’s a chance for you to feel them by your side as you step into marriage. There are no wrong answers!