Wedding vows are incredibly personal promises that sum up your relationship and paint the future you’ll share with your partner. Many brides want to write their vows to make them even more special, but it can become a stressful undertaking. This is a simple guide to writing your own wedding vows that anyone can use to make their ceremony perfect.
1. Read Traditional Vows for Inspiration
You may never get anywhere with your vows if you’re staring at an intimidating blank page. It’s an even more difficult place to start if you’ve never been to a wedding. Make the process much easier on yourself by looking up traditional vows for inspiration.
As you’re reading through the vows, note their structure and length. Highlight any wording or phrases you may want to recreate for your wedding day. You’ll better understand what you can add to your vows and how to shape each stanza.
2. Write a List of Promises
Vows are sacred promises. You may struggle with writing your own wedding vows if you haven’t made a list of promises you’d like to make to your partner. They may not come up in everyday conversations, but your ceremony is the best place to make pledges that will become the foundation of your marriage.
Sit down with your partner to think about what promises you’d both like to make at your wedding. They could be personal and sweet, like:
I vow to stand by your side through sickness and health.
I promise to kill every spider for you.
I vow to love you unconditionally.
This is also an excellent opportunity to think about any religious phrases or promises you’d like to work into your ceremony if you hold religious beliefs. You and your partner could consider things like:
Christian vow: I promise to honor you in the holy relationship of marriage under God.
Muslim vow: I give myself to you in marriage in accordance with the instructions of the Holy Prophet.
Jewish vow: I take you as my spouse and promise to seek a life with you blessed by the faith of Israel.
If you and your partner aren’t religious, you can still weave promises similar to these into your vows without mentioning any religious beliefs. It all depends on who you are as individuals and as a couple.
3. Crack a Joke
Everyone’s a little nervous on their wedding day. It’s a significant life milestone that happens in front of everyone you love. You can deal with the nerves by writing a joke into your vows. Follow up the one-liner by acknowledging your delighted nervousness and you’ll feel the tension break throughout the room. It’s always an endearing moment because it’s so heartfelt.
4. Share a Personal Story
It’s always lovely when couples share stories from their relationship in their vows. You could begin yours by talking about how you knew you loved your partner when they kept you sane during unexpected airport layovers on your first adventure together. Maybe you’d love to talk about the day you met or when your proposal happened.
Stories paint pictures and set the mood for the room. You’ll also invite your guests to experience the intimacy of your vows by letting them in on a bit more of your relationship. They’ll get more from the experience and you’ll share a more profound moment with everyone.
5. Quote Something You Both Love
You don’t have to pull words from a religious book or traditional wedding ceremony outline to quote something romantic. You could also talk with your partner about your favorite romantic movies, television shows, books, or poems. Think about adding a line to your vows as a nod to your shared passion or connection, such as:
“Love is like a friendship caught on fire.” – Jeremy Taylor
“Where there is love there is life.” – Gandhi
“Some souls just understand each other upon meeting.” – N.R. Hart
A single line might not seem like a significant addition to your vows, but it could pull your introduction together and lead into the heart of your ceremony. A quote could also be the perfect way to end your vows before any other traditions you want to incorporate.
6. Talk About What Makes You Excited
Vows are a moment for reflection, but they’re also opportunities to think about the future. During your part of the ceremony, you could talk about what you’re looking forward to in your married lives.
Talk about how excited you are to travel around the world and go on adventures. Mention your hopes for starting a family or spoiling grandkids together. Anything that makes your heart skip a beat about your future would be an excellent addition to your wedding ceremony.
7. Work Through a Few Drafts
You don’t have to write perfect vows on your first try. Get everything down on paper and read through it. Make whatever edits you feel are necessary. Practice reading them aloud and then call a friend or family member to become your second pair of ears. Your partner could even work through their vows with you if you don’t want them to be a secret.
Keep in mind that the average vows last for around two minutes per partner, but you can make them a bit shorter or longer if you prefer. There’s no rush to make things last as long as a monologue in a romance movie if that’s not your style. While you’re reading through your vows, set a timer to get an idea of how long you can expect your part of the ceremony to last.
8. Don’t Start at the Last Minute
If at all possible, start writing your vows at least a month before your big day. You’ll want time to work on them when you’re not feeling stressed or anxious about general things happening in your daily life. It’s much more fun to write them when you’re relaxed and feeling romantic.
It’s also wise to give yourself extra time to work through your draft. Step away from what you write and let it sit for a day or two. Return to it with a fresh mind and you’ll hear things that might not sound quite right or think of things that express your feelings more clearly.
You’ll also get precious time to read your vows to someone you trust because they’ll have a heads up that you need to call or visit them. If you have to write your vows last-minute, sending them by text can also help.
Write Your Own Wedding Vows
You can use this simple guide to writing your own wedding vows to get started today. Think about what you want to say to your partner while pledging your heart and your future to them. Whether you want to crack a joke, mention your favorite memory, or quote something special