FLIP A COIN …One off-beat wedding provides charming inspiration.

I don’t usually write about one specific wedding, but when a fun, interesting, creative couple gets their hands on their own wedding – anything can happen. I recently worked with just such a pair. Here are a few things they brought to the table.

The Happy Couple in front of the venue

To begin, they changed up the standard time-line by having their cocktail hour first, then the ceremony, and then the dinner. They are not the first to do this, but it doesn’t happen all that often. I really like this for several reasons. Food-wise, it actually makes a lot of sense. Hors d’oeuvres can be filling. Give it a rest, then have dinner. Additionally, it provided an opportunity to socialize with guests, perhaps taking away some of the anxiety. Think of it: everyone had a snack (and a drink) which puts them in a great mood, then on to the ceremony. However, if a couple is not seeing each other before their ceremony (or seeing guests) it probably won’t work. These ‘out of the box’ ideas clearly are not for everyone, but it’s always good to think about options.

Next, instead of a traditional processional they created what they dubbed a ‘soul train.’ They had a group of friends make two lines, and then, two at a time, they danced down the make-shift aisle – coming to the front where the ceremony would take place. Now, if you wanted attendants standing with you, you could have them dance their up to the altar area. This couple choose not to have any bridesmaids or groomsmen stand with them, so the dancers then took their seats. They chose a Michael Jackson song for this, naturally! When everyone was done hoofing down the aisle, the bride, with her own special song and her special escort (her father having passed away) danced to the front and we began our ceremony.

Line up for a soul train processional!

For their “I do” response they choose instead to say ‘I’m in,” which garnered a great response from their guests, who obviously knew them well!  Traditionally, once the couple agrees to go forward, (the ‘I do’ part) they can take their vows. This is sometimes called the ‘declaration of intent’, the ‘pledge’ or ‘declaration of free will and intent’, and it’s not the same as the vows. A lot of people get confused about that.

Once they were ‘in’ – who would speak, or ‘take’ their vows first? Old school thinking is the husband goes first, but today most people don’t pay much attention to that. They certainly didn’t have a preference one way or another, so they flipped a coin. That worked great! Again, not the first time I’ve used that in a wedding (ok, only the second time ever) and again, it’s not for everyone, but it was certainly fun. The groom flipped the coin and the bride made the call (heads). They didn’t plan that in advance, it simply unfolded that way. Oh, and she won the toss and went first. They finished their vows with a cool ‘high five.’

A great view of the soul train.

These types of charming touches can add a lot. But they have to come from a real place. For some couples perhaps just one little fun little idea is quite enough. But this wedding was a great example of what I always advocate, and that is to be yourselves. Don’t be afraid to change things.

Coin toss (landed on the floor)

In the end the ceremony was still a wedding ceremony, and it was emotional, meaningful and lovely. You know what they say – if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, etc.  It’s almost impossible to create a wedding ceremony that is not readily recognizable as a wedding ceremony.

'They're in!' a good reason to 'high five'

Finally, I want to mention the amazing venue: The Scranton Cultural Center. This building has elements of Gothic Revival, Romanesque Revival, and Art Deco – it’s quite eclectic – a lot like the couple themselves! No wonder they chose it. Built in the 1920s and beautifully preserved it is just stunning! A great couple deserves a great venue. Congratulations to Nicole and Marc!

 

Thank you: K HART PHOTOGRAPHY & DESIGN LLC

 

 

 

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