How to Plan a Truly Personalised Wedding – Not The One You Think You Want!

How to Plan a Truly Personalised Wedding – Not The One You Think You Want!

One of the most common questions I’m being asked as a wedding videographer is about my favourite type of weddings to capture. 

While the specifics may vary, my answer always revolves around one key element: authenticity. 

For me, there’s something truly magical about couples who choose to celebrate their wedding day exactly how they want it, unbound by societal expectations.

Hundreds of years of tradition and religion have created a well known format for a wedding, many elements of which are touching and stand the test of time. There are however other parts of a ‘traditional’ wedding that may not feel authentic to you as a couple, and sometimes you don’t even realise it isn’t what you want until someone shows you another way…this blog is all about overcoming what you think you want (and what others want for you!), and getting to the heart of what you truly want for your wedding day. It’s about planning a personalised wedding that fully reflects what you two are all about. I’ve compiled a list of suggestions which will challenge the way you think about different elements of your day, and my hope is that by working through this you’ll be able to plan a beautifully personalised wedding that you’ll love looking back on for the rest of your lives.

Grooms posing with sausage dogs

Choose your people

Tradition dictates that weddings are made up of a bride and her tribe of bridesmaids, and a groom and his party of groomsmen and ushers – it’s 2024 and we already know that is definitely not always the case, and challenging longstanding (gender) roles within your celebration is a great place to start checking in with yourself. Choosing your people is one of the most important parts of your wedding, as they will be the faces you’ll remember fondly when you think back on the experience. Here are some things to think about in terms of who’s involved in your big day:

  • you may want to opt for a smaller, more intimate wedding with just the people closest to you if that feels more authentic than a big party full of all your acquaintances – have a read of this blog to see if an intimate wedding is for you
  • change the norms of who gives speeches at your wedding; in the scenario of a heterosexual couple, more and more brides are choosing to say a few words, so do mothers of brides. The most important thing is to hear from the people who mean the most to you, and if that means scrapping the best man speech then don’t be afraid
  • consider involving your friends and loved ones in the proceedings, by asking one of them to officiate a personal, symbolic ceremony or make use of musical talent within your circle
  • choose your tribe for the people you really want by your side; one of my grooms had a ‘breast woman’ in place of a best man. The days of traditional groomsmen mocking the groom and playfully making his life difficult doesn’t have to be your reality; while that’s totally ok, you could also choose the people that will lift you up and support you on this momentous day
  • in the spirit of mixing up the traditional roles, at one of my recent weddings the couple had a ‘flower dude’ who escorted them out of the ceremony, throwing confetti as they danced their way out

Flower Dude throwing confetti

Bride walking down the aisle with bridesmaids

Create Your Own Traditions

Think about whether all the gimmicks you book for your day really reflect you and the vibe of the day, or whether you are just ticking boxes. Check in with yourselves on all the traditions you stick to without even thinking about it. Less is more. You may also want to consider these fun alternatives that might be more authentic to you:

  • instead of the typical format of the groom waiting for the bride at the end of the aisle, why not walk down the aisle together? This removes all the stereotypical gender roles from the equation and focuses the occasion simply on the two people in love, getting married
  • wear whatever you want! It’s your celebration and it doesn’t have to look a certain way, so feel free to ditch the tux if it makes you happy
  • when it comes to the evening, choose music you love and want to celebrate to and don’t feel tied to having a first dance if you’d rather go straight to the party – your guests will love it either way!
  • ask your photographer and videographer about fun ways to do group photographs, e.g. by incorporating smoke bombs or other fun additions, bringing personality and playfulness to what can otherwise feel like a formality 

Couple walking down the aisle together

Consider A Unique Wedding Location and Format

You can get creative with your venue and the format of your whole day for a truly individual and unique wedding. Maybe choose something ‘out there’ with your decor or have your wedding by the beach or in the mountains…use your imagination and pick something that feels like ‘you’! If a traditional timeline doesn’t make sense for you, format the day however you want – want two ceremonies, a legal (and even religious) one followed by a hand-fasting? Go for it. Think some DIY decor would really warm the place up? Bring meaningful items from your house or past generations to decorate your venue. In the evening (or at any point throughout the day!) group activities such as Ceilidh dancing are a great way to bring everyone together.

Finally, remember that your wedding day should truly be a reflection of you and so you want it to be captured in the most authentic way possible too. Take some time to think about what you want from your photographer and videographer, and build a connection with them ahead of your day. This way, they will be able to intuitively capture you in a way that makes you feel comfortable and confident, and allows you to look back on your day with the most magical memories. If you’d like to find out more about me before you get in touch, check out my story here. I will always be the videographer who encourages you to think outside the box, support your vision and build a wedding you are head over heels in love with.

So, to the couples out there planning their special day, my advice is simple: do what YOU want. Embrace the authenticity of your love story, and let your wedding day be a reflection of the unique bond you share. It’s an invitation to celebrate your way, breaking free from the expectations, creating memories that are as extraordinary and individual as your love. 

Today, many couples are rewriting the rules and the suggestions above stem from what I’ve seen and have had the honour of documenting for the lovely couples I’ve worked with. A wedding should be a celebration of love, but also individuality. It’s your day – your story. 

There’s an art to telling your story in a way that is emotive, artistic, and, above all, natural. No couple is the same, and that’s what makes each wedding a captivating and one-of-a-kind experience.

So here’s to writing your own love story and celebrating it authentically. 

I’d love to capture that wonderful experience for you. If you are keen to talk about your vision and story, I’m right here. Let’s chat

The Journal