44 Inspiring Ways to Personalize Your Wedding Ceremony

Your wedding should reflect both your memories as a couple — and your dreams for the future. We complied 44 wedding ceremony ideas to add your own spin to your big day.

By The Zola Team

Photo by Zola

Want to spruce up your wedding ceremony but don’t know where to start? We’ve got you covered with our favorite wedding ceremony ideas.

It’s becoming more common during wedding ceremonies for couples to keep their guests on their toes. People are starting to switch things up to best fit their styles and interests, and there are many ways to make your big day even more special.

Whether you want to make a flower petal circle surrounding your ceremony or want your family dog to walk your ring down the aisle, we’ve compiled 44 of our favorite unique ceremony ideas.

If you already have your wedding venue booked, you can jump to our specific set up inspiration:

Add Outdoor Elegance

Make It Sentimental

Add in Handmade Touches

Set the Scene

Add Outdoor Elegance

If you and your partner are nature lovers, consider incorporating natural elements into your wedding day. Plant a tree in a pot together before saying “I do” to take home and watch grow with your love, or add tiki lights to light up your walk down the aisle.


  1. Plant your own tree: Embark on this new journey together by picking up a shovel and planting your own tree in a pot. After your wedding has come to a close, bring your tree home to represent your growing love for each other.

  2. Seat all your guests on hay bales: Seat your guests on hay bales for a fashion-forward country wedding feel.

  3. Toss your favorite flower petals: Hand out paper cones filled with a flower petal of your choice for guests to throw after you kiss or as you walk up the aisle.

  4. Surprise the crowd with a special ring bearer: Pick your beloved pet to deliver your rings in style. They’ll put a smile on everyone’s faces as they bring your rings down the aisle.

  5. Add tiki lights: Light up your aisle with tiki lights or candles leading to the altar. Even add small candles as centerpieces at your reception to light up the whole night.

Wedding Programs

  1. Swap roses: As roses are the traditional floral symbol of love, each of you holds a rose throughout the ceremony and exchanges them right before saying “I do.” Put your gifted roses in a vase displayed at the side of the altar to symbolize your first gifts to each other as newlyweds.

  2. Cleanse with water: Pour a pitcher of water over each other’s hands to purify your love. This unique ritual symbolizes the release of past emotional blocks, opening your hearts for your new journey together.

  3. Make a flower circle: Place your favorite flower petals in a circle for you and your partner to speak your vows. Not only does this signify love, grace, joy, beauty, and dedication to each other, but it’s also a beautiful added decoration for your altar.

  4. Provide ceremony fans: If your wedding is taking place during warmer weather, hand out fans that double as wedding programs for your ceremony.

  5. Arrive on a boat: Enjoy the ocean or lake scenery by taking the long route down the aisle, arriving at your wedding ceremony on a boat.

Make It Sentimental

Incorporate heart-warming touches into your ceremony that will leave you and your spouse reminiscing for years to come. Unify your love by lighting a candle or creating your own personalized cocktail for your loved ones to toast with.

Make It Sentimental 1

  1. Light a unity candle: Once you’ve said your vows, light a unity candle to represent coming together as one. This ritual symbolizes both your family’s warmth, strength, and wisdom becoming one.

  2. Try your favorite wine: Mix your two favorite wine choices into one vase for you and guest to sip at the beginning of your wedding ceremony. This symbolizes your two families coming together for love and unity.

  3. Release sky lanterns: At the beginning or end of your wedding ceremony, light a sky lantern to symbolize the joining of two souls into one for eternity.

  4. Exchange love letters: Spark the waterworks by reading a love letter written by your partner on the morning of your wedding day. Make this a tradition and write them yearly to bring out on anniversaries or for any important date in your relationship.

  5. Relive your proposal: Switch the roles and have the one that got proposed to get down on one knee to ask the big “will you marry me?” at the altar.

  6. Reminisce with bouquet charms: Spruce up your bouquet by adding charms resembling past memories with your favorite symbols or pictures.

Welcome Sign

  1. Releasing of doves: As many fairytale movies show the breathtaking dove release, you can do the same by releasing your own doves to signify peace.

  2. Display a unity cross: A unity cross is a multifaceted sculpture that is to be put together at the altar. During your ceremony, put together the cross to symbolize you two being empty without each other, yet coming together as one.

  3. Dress your guests: Leave hats, scarves, or gloves waiting for your guests on the seats of their chairs to match the crowd on this special day.

  4. Welcome your loved ones in style: Customize your own wedding welcome sign to greet your guests while everyone prepares for you two to say “I do.” For some added fun, include a unique wedding hashtag on your sign for your guests to engage with on social media.

  5. Read your favorite book passage: Whether your favorite book is classic literature, history, or a love story, read your favorite passage to your partner and guests.

Add in Handmade Touches

Add simple touches to your ceremony that both you and your spouse will remember for years to come. Get creative by adding your favorite action figure to your outfit as your boutonniere or add a country twist by branding your own leather together.


  1. Make and seal your own wedding box: Pack a box full of love letters, notes, a bottle of your favorite liquor, and other favorites at the beginning of your ceremony. Once you say “I do,” lock the box and pack it away until your first anniversary together.

  2. Pour sand: Take two vases of different colored sands to pour into another vase to symbolize your two families becoming one. You can add simple touches, like your names on each vase, or keep them clean and classic.

  3. Get creative with your boutonniere: Step away from tradition and pin your favorite action figure or printed icon as a boutonniere.

  4. Create your own vow books: Make your own matching vow books before your wedding for a unique touch and special memory for your important day.

  5. Brand leather together: Take a unique approach to unifying your love by branding leather. Whether you want a decorative piece to hang on your wall, a new bracelet, or a wallet, brand your wedding date on it together.

Ring Holder

  1. Blend your own beer: Choose your favorite light and dark beers to pour together into one glass in front of your guests before stating your vows. After saying “I do,” take a sip and toast to all your loved ones.

  2. Tie the knot (literally): After you exchange vows and rings, tie two ropes together with a fisherman’s knot.

  3. Build a heart with LEGOs: Never let go of each other by building a LEGO heart at the altar. If you and your partner don’t want to build a heart, build your favorite character, keeping in mind how long this might take you.

  4. Choose a unique ring pillow: Choose from a colored or floral pillow, or even a handcrafted wooden ring holder for your ring bearer to carry.

  5. Aisle ribbons: Pick out as many different colored ribbons as you’d like and add them to the chairs lining your aisle for an added touch.

  6. Balloon arch: Spruce up the end of the aisle with a balloon arch with your favorite colors. Take it upon yourself to make your own or order one that fits your wedding perfectly.

Set the Scene

Leave your guests in awe when walking into your wedding venue, during your ceremony, or as they leave. Change up the seating arrangement for a unique view or wrap yourselves in blankets to feel the warmth and happiness throughout the room.

Wedding Furniture

  1. Upgrade your wedding furniture: Invest in vintage couches, acrylic chairs, or love seats to make a fashion statement on your wedding day.

  2. Seat your guests in a circle: Switch things up and seat your guests in a circle to surround your ceremony with the love of your friends and family. Not only will you be surrounded by those you love, but the whole crowd can get a front-row seat.

  3. Pass the rings around: Stay traditional and pass your rings around for your guests to bless you and your partner before saying “I do.”

  4. Skip the veil: In many religions, the veil signifies humility and respect before God, but if you aren’t religious, skip it! Add a unique twist to your outfit and make your own crown, headband, or skip a headpiece all together.

  5. Get creative with lighting: Light the aisle and just your altar, or cluster candles on tables to make your wedding feel even more intimate.

Wedding Doors

  1. Give out hankies to your guests: Whether your ceremony will make guests cry with laughter or for your love for each other, hand out personalized handkerchiefs to help wipe the tears away.

  2. Forget the flower baskets: If you don’t want your aisle to have flowers, consider giving your flower girls ribbon wands to kick start your ceremony.

  3. Make a grand entrance: Set up grand doors that open and close as you and your partner enter and exit. Decorate them with flowers and garland, or keep them simplistic and elegant.

  4. Custom wedding programs: Set the tone for your wedding by customizing your own wedding programs for your guests.

  5. Ribbon canopy: Fulfill the wedding of your dreams by buying or creating your own wedding canopy. Make it light up the room with bring colors, or stay neutral with a classic white.

  6. Confetti send off: After saying “I do” have your guests throw confetti at you and your partner while exiting the aisle.

  7. Turn your flower girl or boy into a flower fairy: Have your flower girl or boy dress up as a fairy to walk down the aisle throwing fairy dust (or flowers). They can wear a full fairy outfit, a pair of wings, or a simple flower crown.

Your ceremony should remind you and your family of all the loving moments you have had together. Pick out your top favorite wedding ceremony touches that do just that! Check out our wedding planning tips and tricks to making your dream wedding a reality.

Whether you are wanting to have your wedding ceremony outdoors or indoors, Zola is here to help you add your own spin on your wedding day festivities. After you have your special day planned out, send out your save the dates so your loved ones are able to mark this on their calendar.

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