Write Your Own Wedding Vows

A bride and groom's guide to how to write your own wedding vows for your special day.

write your own wedding vows
Wedding vows are the keystone of a marriage ceremony. When so much time is spent dedicated to entertainment and decorative aspects of a wedding, it's sometimes forgotten that the most meaningful part of a wedding lies in the words the bride and groom say to each other when committing to a lifelong relationship. If you want your vows to be truly memorable, write your own wedding vows.

How to Write Wedding Vows

Often when a bride and groom sit down to write their vows, if they don't have guidelines to follow, they end up feeling like an author with writer's block. After all, how do you summarize your unconditional love for another person within a few lines? If the bride and groom sit down prepared with some brainstorming tools, the words will flow much easier.

Brainstorming Ideas

When you are going to write your own wedding vows, start by deciding with your fiance' whether you plan to use the same vows, or if each person is going to write different vows. Set aside time for a brainstorming session, and agree to both come prepared with shared memories and photos that remind you of favorite times spent together. You might want to look up definitions of "love," "marriage," or "commitment," in the dictionary to spark ideas. Write down favorite movies, songs, artists, poems and quotes.

Two Minds As One

If you have agreed to write different vows, separate for awhile after meeting, sharing and deciding on a few common themes. Decide before you separate how long the vows should be, i.e., how many lines or sentences. Go to a separate place in the house and write your individual vows. Speak from the heart.

These are only preliminary, you will end up changing them later. You're not setting anything in stone just yet. If it helps you to relax, play some favorite music, light a candle or read a letter from your fiance'; you want to be writing without any inhibition. Agree to get back together after a set period of time, perhaps over a glass of wine, and read your vows to each other. Even though you may want to keep your vows a "secret" until the final day, it's better to share them with each other, to ensure they coordinate well. This should be a meaningful time; enjoy it. Discuss what you liked in each other's vows, and agree what focus you each want to take, and then make revisions. If you are saying the same vows, this is when you collaborate and decide on final vows.

The Legalities

In order for your vows to be legally binding, you must incorporate an official "vow." It is official if you communicate your solemn promise to be married and remain married to one another. Your pastor, priest of officiant should be able to help you in following these guidelines.

A template from which to write your own wedding vows for a legally binded commitment would be: " I, "Henry" take you, "Allison" to be my husband/wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until death do us part. This is my solemn vow." You may add on to this traditional vow before of after.

Once the wedding is over, you may want to print out your vows and add them to your wedding scrapbook or frame them to hang on the wall. They will be a long-standing reminder of your love for each other.

Written by: J. Williams