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Article: How To Honour A Deceased Loved One At Your Wedding

couple embracing looking out over gloomy harbour

How To Honour A Deceased Loved One At Your Wedding

Weddings are one of the most joyous, love-filled days you will ever have. The happiness surrounding newlyweds is often unmatched. 

What happens if you're dealing with the sadness and grief of losing a loved one close to the wedding or someone you wish could be at the wedding but is no longer with us? This is where you can take steps to incorporate reminders, memories, or items that give mention to that particular person who is no longer here.

Before you start reading this blog, I want you to understand one thing: there is no right or wrong, no rules of what to do or how to do it, and no limitations on what you can do. The things I'll write about are more for inspiration and ideas and to see if anything might work for you. However, if you have a better way in mind, please do what allows you to express your love for the person you're grieving in the best way possible for you or your family.

Here are suggestions for ways to honour a deceased loved one at your wedding.

Carry an item of theirs or a photo of them.

When planning out your bridal ensemble for your wedding day, if you've got an item from that special someone or they've left an item behind that is meaningful, you can add it to your overall look. This could be your 'something borrowed, something blue' etc., traditional item, or something like an item of jewellery or anything else that might be relevant for you.

Another option is to simply carry a photo of them in your bouquet or pocket. This will allow you to have them there while you walk down the aisle and marry the love of your life.

Take time for a reading or quote.

If you have a poem you love that reminds you of them, you could weave it into your wedding ceremony to create a beautiful memory. It can be something they love or remind you of them, as long as it's meaningful.

Other options instead of a poem;

  • Song lyrics
  • Movie quotes
  • Book passages
  • Quotes

Acknowledge them during the start of your ceremony.

When you've lost a loved one, you can often feel that void at your wedding; your guests will often notice it too. As your guests arrive and are seated for your wedding ceremony, you could have your celebrant say something to acknowledge the loved one who has passed on before starting the ceremony.

Acknowledging your loved one before the ceremony starts gives everyone a few minutes to process their emotions before focusing on your special day.

Photo display at your wedding

One low-key yet touching way to honour a loved one who has passed on during your wedding is to set up a table display of photographs of the person. You could do this at the ceremony, or the reception, whichever works best for you.

Photos are a beautiful physical reminder of someone no longer physically here with us.

Reserve a seat for your loved one.

One of our Euphorie brides, Julieanne, had a seat at one of her wedding reception tables reserved for her cousin who had passed away, and it was one of the most beautiful, touching, and heartfelt things I've seen. 

Saving your loved one who has passed on a seat at one of your reception tables is a great way to show that while yes, they've passed on, they're also still here, a part of us every day. You could even place an item on the seat of your loved one, like a jacket of theirs, a photo, their favourite flowers, or anything that might remind you of them or be something of theirs if you're worried about anyone sitting in the seat too!

Honouring a loved one at your wedding that has passed away is a heartfelt way to include that special person in your marriage, even when they can't be here anymore.

There are a lot of subtle ways you can honour a deceased loved one that are also very straightforward and easy to achieve, such as;

  • Lighting a candle in memory of them.
  • Incorporating a sentimental song that reminds you of them into your wedding.
  • Having their significant other, child or someone close to them give a speech on their behalf.
  • A toast to the loved one that is no longer with us at the wedding reception.
  • A donation box to the cause that assists what may have caused them to pass away. (One of our Euphorie brides recently did a cancer donation box for her father)

Whatever you decide to do, we urge you to choose what you feel comfortable with and factor in how it may emotionally impact you on the day.

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