Finding your meaningful, stylish way to say “I do still”
A vow renewal is an important, symbolic event in your marriage, regardless of what has brought you to deciding that reaffirming your commitment to one another is what you want to do. Perhaps you’re celebrating a milestone anniversary, have made it through a rough time together, or have been dreaming of having the wedding you always wanted.
In addition, you’ve undoubtedly heard about celebrities’ wedding vow renewals including those of Seal and Heidi Klum, Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon, Celine Dion and René Angelil, or Madonna and Guy Ritchie. While the extravagance that celebrities may certainly bring inspiration to your ideas, you may find that you prefer something entirely different that is uniquely yours. This brings us to one of the most wonderful things about a vow renewal, it’s pretty much all up to you when it comes to style. The possibilities are nearly endless so sit back, close your eyes, and let your imagination run wild. Where does it take you?
- A small, intimate celebration with close family and friends?
- Just the two of you escaping to a tropical island?
- A do-over of your wedding day, but even better?
If you find yourself stuck when it comes to an idea, here are some real-life vow renewal celebration examples to get your creative juices flowing!
- An Intimate Holiday Ceremony at Home – Perhaps you’ve always dreamed of having your home all decorated for the holidays and descending your staircase to the tune of “the wedding march” where you then repeat your vows in front of the fireplace with your family gathered around. The celebration continues to the dining room where you all share a meal in celebration.
- A Casual Backyard Gathering – Perhaps you see yourself in a breezy sundress sipping lemonade at your vow renewal. If your husband is more of a shorts and t-shirt kind of guy, renewing your vows in the backyard under your clematis covered trellis arch might be the perfect option for you two. Celebrate by firing up the barbecue grill for some steaks, chicken, and roasted corn, break open a big watermelon, and forgo the big cake in favor of cupcakes.
- City Party Meets Vow Renewal – If weekends find the two of you taking in the culture and nightlife of the city with its great restaurants and entertainment, perhaps a sophisticated, trendy party at an amazing loft is more your style. Think chic decor, Asian fusion food, cosmopolitans or mojitos, a view of the city lights at night, and fabulously dressed guests.
- A Dessert and Champagne Party – It’s all about the decadence with a dessert and champagne celebration. If both of your tastes fall to the finer, decadent things, this style may be perfect for you. Think of a table filled with indulgent and decadent chocolates, tiramisu, chocolate-covered strawberries, cheesecakes, tortes, and of course your amazing cake all complimented with fine champagne.
- A Brunch – Perhaps morning is your favorite time of day and brunch is your favorite meal. A morning vow renewal ceremony followed by a celebration at your favorite restaurant or a hotel ballroom might be just your style. Just imagine a lavish brunch with a myriad of food stations for omelets, crepes, waffles, pastries, fresh fruits, eggs, potatoes, meats, coffee, tea, mimosas, and a fabulous dessert bar in addition to your cake.
- A Near Perfect Repeat – Perhaps your wedding was all you could have hoped for, so imagine once again walking down the aisle in the same church or synagogue where you were originally married. This time, though, your sons escort you down the aisle following your daughter as she scatters rose petals. Your calla lily bouquet is a perfect replica of the one you had at your wedding. As your eyes meet your husband, he smiles at you with pure adoration in his eyes. You both repeat the same vows you spoke fifteen years ago. Your friends and family, all one hundred and fifty of them, are in attendance to support the two of you.
- The Wedding You Never Had – Perhaps your first walk down the aisle wasn’t quite how you imagine for whatever reason, but you still got to marry the man of your dreams and life went on. This time, for your wedding vow renewal it’s all going to be everything you dreamed of back then and more. The perfect venue. The perfect dress. The perfect cake. The perfect music. Magnificent food. The celebration of your dreams. Now that the two of you have the resources to make it happen for yourselves, you can celebrate the way you’ve always wanted.
- Sand and Surf – Can you imagine yourself walking across the sand to your husband in a soft flowing dress? If so, a beach vow renewal may be just what you’re looking for. Just imagine the amazing blue of the sky and ocean as a backdrop, and the sound of the ocean as the waves crescendo behind you while you and your husband say your vows. Not only will the photos be amazing, but you get to take a romantic walk along the beach together after sealing your vows with a kiss.
- The Tropical Destination Vow Renewal – If the two of you would prefer to have someone manage all the details and combine your vow renewal with a second honeymoon, a destination vow renewal may be just your style. Imagine jetting off with a few of your closest friends and family to a tropical island. You walk down a path to your husband who is standing in front of a waterfall wearing a white sundress with a colorful flower lei around your neck and a hibiscus flower tucked behind your ear. As your husband takes your hand and tells you he’ll love you forever a rainbow appears behind you while your guests look on with tears in their eyes.
- All Aboard – Perhaps you’ve been dreaming of taking a cruise somewhere interesting like Alaska, Canada, Europe, Cancun, Hawaii, or the Bahamas. Most cruise lines now offer a wedding vow renewal cruise package that includes a ceremony officiated by the ship’s captain or another officiant. Ceremonies usually can be held in the onboard chapel, on deck, in a formal dining room, or even at a port of call. Package options include amenities such as a bouquet and boutonniere, a bottle of champagne to celebrate, take-home champagne flutes to commemorate your renewal, cake, live or recorded music, photography, and videography.
Hopefully these examples have helped you start imagining what you want for your own vow renewal. The first step is to plan some time to sit down with your spouse and talk through your options as a team so that it is reflective of the two of you and your love for each other. If you have children, you can get them involved too. Some ways you can involve your children include having them be attendants, sing a song, read of poem, design the invitations, or help make food or desserts.
To help you get started planning your vow renewal together, we have created a worksheet to take you through the most critical decisions. As you work through it, make notes of questions you may have, vendors you want to check into, and so on in the white spaces.