Updated: Oct 30, 2018
Well-meaning friends and family love to tell you what details you won’t remember from your wedding. The color of the linens, the type of wine you selected, the favors you ordered... The list goes on. And while they may be right about some of those details, and it certainly can help keep decisions in perspective, never underestimate the power of meaningful details when planning your wedding. These meaningful details are what remind you throughout the day of what the ceremony and reception are all about. They can be a touchstone for a cherished memory, a reminder of a humorous moment, or a way to honor family traditions. And while I do still remember mulling over decisions of ribbon color, tent size, and table arrangements, those are not the little things that stay with me. Without a doubt, the below wedding details are what I continue to cherish. The sum of all these small parts made our wedding look and feel personalized and meaningful. 1. Something Borrowed, Something Blue... For a bride, completing the timeless tradition of “Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue, and A Sixpence in your Shoe" is a way to personalize details needed when getting ready.
My “something old” honored my mom’s side of the family in two ways. First with a handkerchief that my great-grandmother made, passed down in my family to dry my happy tears at the altar. I also wore my grandmother’s opal ring that represented our shared birthstone. I was lucky enough to have a few “new” things for my bridal look, including a bottle of perfume that I had never worn before. Now when I wear it I’m instantly reminded of getting ready for my wedding day.
I borrowed a brooch from my mother to pin to the ribbon of my bouquet, which personalized the floral arrangement. And my something blue was a couture silk kimono that I wore in the moments before changing into my wedding gown. (And in case the superstition stuck that I was supposed to have everything from the rhyme with me during the ceremony, I had a backup something blue - my toenail polish!) And the oft-forgotten sixpence - My aunt made certain I had one to tuck into the insole of my shoe.
Those little details carried on traditions from my family and acted as touchstones during the getting ready process. I was reminded of the generations before me, while looking forward to passing those traditions on. 2. Memorial Table The heartbreaking part of wanting all of your closest friends and family at your wedding is that it is not always possible. Cameron and I have both lost people dear to us, and we wanted to honor them as best we could. My mom gathered photos and vintage frames, as well as a lantern to keep lit in their honor. It was a gentle and touching reminder that these people live on in our memories and continue to watch over us. We know they would have been there to share in our joy, and they were truly missed.
3. Giving Gifts The most important part of our wedding was being able to share it with our family, and we wanted them to know how much it meant to us. We did personalized gifts for our parents and dear friends, which led to a few memorable moments before the ceremony!
I didn’t have bridesmaids, but I had a few amazing women who were still by my side throughout the day. Borcik jewelry came through with beautiful jewelry that I was so happy to share with these women as a token of my appreciation. It was so amazing to see how the jewelry perfectly complemented their personalities. My dad loves taking walks, and it has always been a joy to join him for a walk in the park. I had a handkerchief personalized to let him know that of all the walks we’ve taken, the walk down my aisle would be my favorite.
Small gifts can represent something much larger. Giving gifts on our wedding day reminded us of how many people came together to make this amazing day happen, and gave us moments with each of those people to cherish always. 4. Champagne Glasses While we had fun giving gifts, we also received gifts that made for meaningful details for our day. One of my dear friends gifted Mr. and Mrs. champagne glasses that we used at our wedding. (Somehow, mine was magically refilled throughout the night.) The glasses added a special touch to our first toast as husband and wife. It may seem like a small detail, but we’ve used the glasses for special occasions since the wedding and each time is a joyful reminder of that celebration!
5. DIY Projects In order to personalize our wedding, we took on a couple DIY projects.
My mother-in-law and I made most of the signage for the wedding, staining wood boards we had cut at Home Depot and using vinyl lettering her friend was kind enough to create for us! We also had cornhole boards made by a friend, because Cameron and I played cornhole at a restaurant the day we met. And my best friend (and Cameron’s cousin - yep, she introduced us!) had a stencil made to match our wedding invitations so that we could personalize our cornhole boards. We painted these and used floral decals to decorate them.
The best part of these DIY projects (other than spending time with friends and family to make them!) is their transition into our married life. The cornhole boards will continue to be used at barbecues and family gatherings and the welcome sign we made will hang in our first house. This is not to say all our planned DIY projects were a success. Most notably, our attempt at making flower vases out of cut whiskey bottles resulted in more jagged bottles than clean cut ones (and a frantic email to Emily to update our floral contract with vases). But taking our time planning the little details meant our wedding was filled with reminders of what the day was about. It added to the significance of the day and gave us small but meaningful moments with the ones we love.
So take time deciding what to include on your wedding day, and know that the small, meaningful details add to the day. And while you may not remember everything from your wedding day, you will certainly remember how these details made you feel!
Meredith and Cameron's wedding and her thoughtful details are exactly what Prudence & Sage helps all our couples do. We offer blog posts like these, as well as the free courses on The Planning Gathering to help anyone, regardless of being our planning clients, have a memorable, meaningful, and uncomplicated wedding. If you're looking for wedding planning or coordination, you can learn more about Emily, Katelynn and the services they offer on their about pages.