How to Plan an At-Home Vow Renewal

Don’t know how to plan a vow renewal at home? Find out everything you need to know from our experts at Zola today.

By Maggy Lehmicke

Vow Renewal at Home
Photo by Lindsay Dawn Photography

At-home ceremonies are beautiful, intimate, and extremely memorable, but also a bit complicated to coordinate. Due to logistics, they often require a little extra planning than an all-inclusive wedding venue might demand. However, if the personal aspects and intimacy of the atmosphere appeal to you, it’s more than worth it to hold a vow renewal ceremony at home.

If you’ve set your heart on an at-home vow renewal celebration, below are some key tips and tricks to consider for cutting costs, reducing stress, and creating an extremely memorable day.

Source Local Vendors

Zola - How to Have a Vow Renewal at Home Photo Credit // Mary Fosky Photography

If you choose to host your wedding vow renewal at home, finding vendors that are local to your area is not only a great way to shave the cost down, but it will also make things simpler. Oftentimes, local wedding vendors are more willing to be flexible and work with you on your vision if you’re right in their backyard. For example, if you’re trying to explain your ideas to a planner or wedding florist, they may be willing to meet you at your home to go over the game plan and/or reduce costs if you’re able to arrange a pick up. This isn’t always the case, but definitely something to keep in mind.

Recruit Friends and Family

This is one of the most important pieces of advice that we can offer for those who want to have an at-home wedding vow renewal. You’re going to have plenty of work to do (after all, you have to make your house event-ready), so make sure that you capitalize on the talents and enthusiasm of your friends and family. From arranging décor and setting up tables, to creating signage and helping with any last-minute coordination, there will be plenty of projects to take on the day of (and the days leading up to) your event.

Consider What You Can DIY (and What’s Not Worth It)

Though you might be able to hand-dye 80 napkins or create a beautiful, floral display at the entrance of your home, is that really how you want to spend your time before your vows ceremony? Your time is valuable and you’re going to want to spend it working on your wedding vows and bonding with your partner, so don’t overload yourself with DIY projects. Don’t be afraid to delegate tasks, and make sure that you pick one or two key details that you’d like to prioritize. As beautiful as your ideas (and skills!) might be, you’re going to remember the moments and emotions more than the vow renewal day décor.

Keep Your Guest List at a Reasonable Size

This isn’t your wedding, so there are no expectations surrounding who should or shouldn’t be invited to a vow renewal. If you’re not that close to your distant family, why invite them? Or, maybe you choose to only invite those who were in your wedding party. Whether it’s 10 people or 300, it’s completely up to you as a married couple. However, the latter is often not reasonable for at-home ceremonies, unless you live on 30 acres of land in rural Montana. And–as always–make sure that you keep COVID-19 health considerations in mind when creating your guest list for your celebration.

Get Creative With Catering

Whether you choose to do something super casual, such as a potluck or renting a food truck to serve wood fired pizzas in your backyard, there’s a lot of room to get creative with catering an at-home vow renewal. Maybe you have a few family members or friends who have offered up their time and cooking skills, or your favorite local restaurant is willing to deliver enough food to feed your attendees on your special day. Whatever you decide to do, just make sure that it’s a reflection of the type of experience you want to create.

Incorporate Pieces of Your Home

Why spend money on expensive décor that’s used across many events when you could simply incorporate some of your favorite pieces from your own home for your vow ceremony? For example, maybe you have a vintage side table that you’d like to place at the entry. Or, maybe you can put all your vintage rugs to good use by the lounge area. Not only is this budget-friendly (and super convenient), but it’s the most authentic way to incorporate both of your personalities, while acknowledging the life that you’ve built together as a married couple.

Make Alternative Weather Arrangements

Zola - How to Have a Vow Renewal at Home Photo Credit // Lindsay Dawn Photography

Just as no one wants it to rain on their wedding day, no one likes planning for a downpour at their vow renewal either. Whether it’s a tent or an indoor alternative, think of it less like a “backup plan” and more like insurance. If your renewal is intimate enough to accommodate everyone in the comfort of your own home, then just make sure that you have everything arranged in a way that can easily be reallocated, if the weather were to shift on the morning of your special day. For smaller homes or larger parties, make sure that you have budgeted for the cost of a tent or indoor alternative that can accommodate all of your guests and loved ones at your celebration.

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