Weddings has taken a new creative turn! On level three, marriage officers can officiate marriages in a home, or in a religious building. Last week Thursday I conducted my first lock-down marriage ceremony in the comfort of the bride and groom own house. Guests were limited to 10 (physical people in the house), but online more than 18 couples and families joined their ceremony via Zoom. The photographers were present to capture the beautiful day, there was a master of ceremony to welcome the limited number of guests and the ample online guests.
The camera was adjusted to just focus on the couple to capture the whole beautiful wedding ceremony. It was wonderful that within minutes after the ceremony all the guests could congratulate the couple. Some jokes were even made that one guest wore white. Which in normal wedding ceremonies would be frowned upon as white is reserved just for the bride. With Zoom however, no one even noticed.
There is a whole range of online platforms that couples can choose from: Zoom, Skype, Microsoft Teams (where you can even upload documents like the guest list or music play list). What a wonderful opportunity that technology has offered us a mean to connect with our beloveds and be able to celebrate in the big dream day of the couple. Guests at the house could even enjoy a glass of bubbly (thanks to the lift on alcohol!!!)
Planning is not as troublesome and as expensive as a guestlist of 100 guests that you need to cater for. Here are some tips:
1. Book your marriage officer at We Promise Wedding ceremonies. And set up a meeting with a lawyer to set up your antenuptial contract (I recommend Engelbrecht attorneys for their excellent service)
2. Invite your guests via an electronic invite. Include the usual details namely date, time, and the online platform that you will be using. All these online platforms offer you the benefit of copying the link or setting up a “meeting” with the guests of your choice. You do not want your high school nemesis to “zoom” into your special day! I prefer to use Canva (a free graphic design platform). This site is free, user friendly, it has a huge variety of beautiful designs and it is easy to change as well as download onto your phone to send out to your guests.
3. Choose a platform where you can invite as many guests as possible. But limit the actual witnesses to two and close relatives/parents as actual guests at the ceremony. This may not exceed more than 7 since you and your hubby and the minister count as persons on the premises. Also don’t forget to count your photographer as permitted guests.
4. Celebrate! Yes please. It will not be the same as a huge wedding function but do serve some bubbly. You can also ask your online guests to pop bubbly on their side and ching ching a glass and even make an online toast in the comment section of your virtual platform! If you want to spend on your guests, you can allocate a gift voucher to each to buy their own food and drinks or pre-order through chain supermarket and get it delivered!
5. Keep connecting! Guests could still contribute their wedding gifts through online vouchers. Also do not forget to send a thank you note to all your guests afterwards with a nice photo of you as a couple.
Please consider to still get married! Read my blog on my website on “Do you want a marriage or a wedding day?” to see that what matters most, is the love you as a couple celebrate. Also, this is the perfect opportunity to save up money for that dream vacation or dream house with your beloved! Most wedding vendors are having fantastic lock-down discounts. Make use of these! As one online blogger wrote: “Let’s ZOOM into the love!”