One of the reasons that we love weddings is because we are able to reconnect with old friends and family members. Unfortunately, not all of our loved ones are able to attend. Throughout our lives we lose loved ones to illness, accidents, and because their time on earth was just too short.
Just because their physical presence is not here, does not mean that you can’t honor their spirit and lives at your ceremony and reception. The key to honoring these deceased loved ones is to honor them in a way that represents your relationships and personalities.
VG Invites has compiled this list of six sentimental ways to include your lost friends and family members into your celebration of love.
1. Reserved Seating
During the ceremony, reserve seats for these cherished friends and family members by placing a single rose in a chair or by placing one of their prized possessions on the seat.
During the reception, set aside a small table with chairs, some place settings, and write a short poem for the centerpiece. If you have certain people in mind, write their names on place cards and set them in front of the chairs. This table can be reserved for anyone that you will want to commemorate.
2. Write Them Into Your Wedding Program
Reserve a section in the program in order to speak about the loved ones that have passed on. We all have friends, and family members that we miss and cherish. Deep down, we can imagine them sitting on the sidelines, rooting for us as we walk down the aisle.
If you want to acknowledge them, writing a passage for them in the program is a great way to honor their spirit. Use quotes that they would often say or a poem that reminds you of their personalities.
3. Set Up A Photo Display
You can also set up a photo display using your favorite images or items that remind you of them. It doesn’t have to be elaborate as long as it is heartfelt. Get a large picture frame and take out the back mat, and glass. Using a staple-gun, attach pieces of ribbon, twine, or string across the frame (as clotheslines) and use clothespins to hang your favorite photographs. Add you own special touch by adding pieces of paper with your favorite quotes and sections of poems that remind you of them.
4. Sew Quotes, Notes, and Images Onto Your Dress
Using photo fabric (which you can find in craft stores), you can print images of your family members onto the lining of your dress. If you don’t feel comfortable with that, you can use fabric markers to write down quotes, notes, names, or draw pictures onto pieces of fabric that can be sewn onto the lining or other parts of your dress.
5. Vicariously Through Photos
Some of your loved ones won’t be able to make it to your wedding because of personal or career obligations. In a recent interview for a local television news program Sarah Baumann Rogers (the editor of Minnesota Bride magazine) stated that, “General rule is prepare for about 10 percent of overage or underage when you're planning a big event like that and catering companies are well aware of this.”
When good friend, Cameron French was unable to make it to Jacob and Jocelyn DeVore’s wedding, they decided to do a little improvisation by printing pictures of him, cutting out his image, and gluing them to wooden sticks so that guests could pose with Cameron throughout the reception.
6. Skype-In Out Of Town “Guests”
It can be difficult for some grandparents and non-frequent-flyers to make it to an out of town wedding. Set up some computers enabled with Skype so that they can watch the ceremony or sit around with guests and talk during the reception.
You can even set up a “Phone Booth”. In this secluded spot, guests can call your family members that weren’t able to attend and talk about the wedding, or chat about their lives. After all, receptions are all about having fun, celebrating, and reconnecting.
Tell us how you have honored your loved one's and guest who couldn't make it to your wedding. Victoria loves to hear from you!