weather aside, there are so many wonderful reasons to consider holding your vow renewal ceremony in a less-than-traditional setting and outdoors is just one of those. As a vow renewal is not a legally binding ceremony, there are no legal restrictions on where or how you choose to reaffirm your love for each other.
i have recently been asked to hold several outdoor vow renewals, and have now added this service to our own woodland based hut for guests, so that they can renew their vows during a stay with us.
There are particular considerations that make your day extra special, and reduce the chance of things going wrong, including;
- acknowledge the weather
We have unpredictable weather in the UK, so either accept that you’ll stand under umberellas in wellington boots, or find a venue with a covered area option.
- visit before you book
Venues will be happy to show you around, without charge, if they are serious about making your day work for you. Ask to meet for 30 minutes to an hour and say that you’d like to see the exact spot where the ceremony is going to take place. Do remember that some areas may only be accessible at certain times of year due to weather conditions.
- Be clear about the type of ceremony you want
before you let hosts persuade you that they have ‘the perfect place’ for you, be sure what your priorities are and what you want your vow renewal to ‘feel’ like. it is easy to get persuaded by the places you visit, to change your ideas. Be open to new ideas, but make sure you let hosts and your celebrant know what you want to help them create the ceremony you have dreamed of.
- Wear boots!
if you are planning to hold your ceremony outdoors, speak to the venue about footwear. This simple thing can totally ruin your ceremony – but it can also make it fun if you’re in a fabulous outfit – with matching wellingtons!
- Be sure about access – for everyone
Not all outside venues or locations will have level access. They may not be suitable for wheelchairs, or may require notice to help gain access. This is such a vital part of your plans, so keep asking about access, parking and any specific access needs you or anyone coming with you has.
- what about after the ceremony?
When you choose your outdoor venue, consider what your plans are for afterwards. Here, we provide a hamper for a woodland picnic after daytime ceremonies, or a hot chocolate flask and hot water bottles for two, to star gaze after night time services.
One of the best outdoor services i delivered, was during a rainy day in a rose garden. Two minutes before we started, the heavy rain stopped and only started as i said ‘now give each other a kiss’. everyone had brought huge white umbrellas, and we dived under them as we followed the Happy couple to their safari tents in the garden. Never let the weather stop your dream of an outdoor ceremony.
I hope these tips help you planning your outdoor vow renewals.