Planning to write your own vows? Then you know the struggle is real. Luckily our friend Katelyn Stanis, professional wedding vow writer and creator of Wedding Words, is here to help you out. She’s an expert on collaborating with couples to write unique wedding vows. Here are her 10 tips to help write your own wedding vows.
1.) Start Early
Many couples wait until weeks, sometimes days, before their wedding ceremony to start writing their vows. Don’t procrastinate! Start ASAP. You’ll be less handicapped by fear when you simply begin. Plus, you’ll have plenty of time to edit and rework your vows, as needed.
2.) Ask Yourself Questions
It’s easy to get stuck trying to decide what you want to write. Instead, use questions as writing prompts. Some of my favorite questions to use are:
- What makes your relationship unique?
- Why did you say yes to his proposal?
- How do you envision your marriage?
3.) Identify a Theme
Just like you could describe the theme of a movie or a book, your wedding vows can have a theme to tie everything together too. To identify your theme, reflect on what your relationship represents. Is it unconditional love? Perhaps it’s humor or kindness. Use your theme as the focal point by which your vows are written around.
4.) Practice Progress Over Perfection
It’s easy to judge our own writing. Don’t let your standard of perfect prevent you from writing your wedding vows. Instead, write from the heart. Understand it’s a process. You’ll likely write more than one version of your vows. You’ll edit, rewrite, and edit some more. This is progress and it will move you forward toward creating your unique wedding vows.
5.) Avoid Cliché’s
Forget commonly used quotes about love. We’ve all heard how love is patient…love is kind. Write stories that are specific to your relationship. The more detail, the better. Instead of simply saying that you love how adventurous your fiancé is with you. Try saying something like, “I love your adventurous side, like the time you taught me how to surf in Costa Rica.” Love is in the details.
6.) Track Your Word Count
Pack your love story into a sweet, little package. Make it your goal to write around 390 to 650 words. This is three to five minutes in speaking length. While it can be challenging to keep it concise, your wedding vows will be more engaging and meaningful when you do. If you’re having trouble editing your own work, consider working with a professional wedding vow writer.
7.) Become Inspired
Choose to write your wedding vows in a place that inspires you. Maybe you write on the shores of the beach where you two regularly stroll. Perhaps the booth of your first date is where you write for an afternoon. Putting yourself in a romantic and meaningful setting will wake up your vow writing muse.
8.) Talk with Your Fiancé
You won’t want to share your vows with your fiancé before the wedding but you will want to discuss some of the technical parts. How long do you need to read your vows? Are there any subjects that should be off limits? Discuss these logistical questions to align on how you plan to write your vows.
You don’t want the first reading of your vows to be in front of your fiancé. Work out any nervous ticks by practicing weeks before your ceremony. Try reading your vows to a friend who can provide constructive feedback. You can also video record yourself to self-critique.
10.) Hire a Professional Wedding Vow Writer:
Still struggling to write your own wedding vows? You may want to consider collaborating with a professional wedding vow writer. At Wedding Words, I work with couples to co-create custom wedding vows that truly speak to what’s in their heart.