One of our main methodologies when working with couples on their Wedding plans is customization. This goes from the location, to signage and even down to their Wedding Ceremony plans. There are many different variations you can apply to the processional and recessional process as there is no one size fits all. Some that are based off religious traditions, some based off logistics, and some based purely off which side the Bride prefers to be photographed from. We are walking you through all of your options and how to put together the best plan for you. Putting a plan in place now will prevent any confusion and anxiety when you get to the rehearsal, and you can feel confident going into your Wedding day.
First of all, Processional and Recessional are likely terms you are not familiar with unless you happen to have been in a lot of Weddings. These are terms used to describe the entry and exit of the Bridal Party. Processional being entry and Recessional being the exit.
Who is Involved?
Before you think about how people will be walking in and out, think about who you want to be included in this process. “Traditionally” the below are included:
Where Will They Stand/Sit?
Before you can think about how people will walk in and walk out, think about where they are going to be during the ceremony. Traditionally the Bridal Party (Bridesmaids, Groomsmen, Best Man and Maid of Honor) stand, lined up behind the Bride and Groom. However, various religious ceremonies require that the Bridal Party sit in the front row instead. For example, if you are hosting a Christian mass with your ceremony, they will be asked to sit as they cannot be up at the altar for the duration of a mass. Similarly, some Jewish ceremonies require the parents to stand up with the Bride and Groom and have the Bridal Party sit. Speak with whomever is conducting your ceremony to see if they have a religious or personal preference that works best for the content of your ceremony.
Their standing or seating order can be arranged in personal preference or height, always starting with the Best Man and Maid of Honor standing closest to the couple.
As far as sides for the Bride and Groom, traditionally the Bride is on the left side and the Groom is on the right side. If you are not having a formal or religious ceremony, you of course can switch this up however you’d like.
What's the Proper Order?
CHRISTIAN WEDDING CEREMONY:
Now, let’s talk about order. Traditionally, at a birds-eye view, the order should be:
JEWISH WEDDING CEREMONY:
Couples having a non-religious ceremony can choose any order they want. We recommend keeping the birds-eye view order while making your preference for the Groom, Bridesmaids and Groomsmen.
Same sex couple can select orders that reflect any religions, traditions or personal preferences they would like. Some same-sex wedding ceremony traditions we have seen and recommend:
APPLIES TO ALL:
Everyone exists essentially in the opposite order as how they walked in. The Bride and Groom of course lead the way, followed by the Maid of Honor and Best Man, the rest of the Bridesmaids and Groomsmen, Parents of the Bride and Groom, Grandparents of the Bride and Groom and then the Officiant. The rest of the guests will follow suit.
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