You have the right to expect everything on your wedding day to be perfect, from the wedding order of service to the bridesmaids’ dresses. After all, this is the one day in your life when everything should be about you!

If you want to make sure this happens, you need to plan every detail of your wedding, from the order of service to the honeymoon. But, perhaps most importantly, when considering your wedding order of service, you need to remember that there is no right or wrong order of service; only the one that suits you.

There’s another good reason for planning your wedding order of service early, it will allow you to send out the order of service with your invitations. Your wedding guests will know exactly where they stand and what to expect.

Of course, you can simply give out the order of service on your wedding day, sometimes a few surprises are a good thing! In fact, even if you send out a wedding order of service with your wedding invitations, you’re going to need to have more available on the day; people will forget them.

Getting The Order Of Service Right

You can choose to provide every detail of your wedding order of service, or you can just provide the highlights of your wedding day. Both are acceptable, providing you give your wedding guests the following basic information:

  • Wedding Details

It may seem obvious as your wedding guests know whose wedding they are coming to! However, the wedding order of service is often kept by guests as a memento of your special day. The front page should state who is marrying whom and the date/location of your wedding ceremony.

  • Arrival Music

This is important, the moment people hear this they will now that the wedding is about to start, and you’re about to make your grand entrance.

If the music is on the wedding order of service it should create an instant silence when it starts playing. All eyes will be on you! 

  • Readings

If you’re having any readings done it’s nice to print them in the order of service. This part isn’t essential but it helps your wedding guests to follow the ceremony if there are any sound issues.

  • The Vows

It’s important that your wedding guests know when you will exchange your wedding vows, they don’t want to be in the toilet at this time! 

You don’t need to print your vows, especially if you’ve written them yourself, you’ll want to keep them a surprise for your wedding party!

  • Signing The Register

Music is usually played while you sign the wedding register. This is the first chance your wedding guests will have to talk about how stunning you look in your wedding dress, although it will be in hushed tones.

  • Exit Song

With everything else done and you officially married you’ll want to walk down the aisle with your groom. Your exit song should be in the wedding order of service to ensure there is the hushed silence you deserve as you leave the wedding venue and head for the real party!

  • Thanks

Finishing your order of service with a thank you to everyone that attended is a nice touch and one that will be appreciated by your wedding guests.

You may also want to include a special thanks to members of the bridal party, ideally by name. This will help them to feel like a special part of your wedding day, the fact that they will keep the wedding order of service for the rest of their life is a testimony to how important you are to them!

Wedding Order Of Service Considerations

Your wedding order of service can be as detailed as you like, or you can simply keep to a basic outline. It depends on how much you want to give away!

But, there are several items that you must be aware of when planning your wedding order of service:

  • Religious Hymns & Readings

If you’re having a civil wedding ceremony you’re not generally allowed to include religious songs or hymns in your service.  If you want religious content in your wedding ceremony you’re going to need to have the wedding service in a religious building and abide by their guidelines. 

Your wedding order of service will reflect this and ensure your guests know what to expect, especially if they have alternative religious views to yours.

  • Songs

Think twice before adding songs to your order of service, specifically including the lyrics in the order of service. While some songs are in the public domain, others are not and are subject to copyright laws. You don’t want your wedding day becoming a lawsuit!

  • Length

It’s your special wedding day and you’ll want to make the most of your wedding service. However, if you have a separate venue for your wedding and the reception, then you’ll need to be aware of any time limits.

Plan your wedding day to allow for small hiccups, such as arriving late, the wedding vows taking longer than you expected, or even the wedding songs over-running.  

Being prepared for these will allow you to plan an order of service that fits within your allotted time slot and doesn’t leave you running out of the church!

If your wedding ceremony and reception are at the same venue this isn’t usually as much of an issue as you’ll have the space available all day.

Choosing the Style

One advantage of selecting your order of service at the same time as your wedding invitations is the ability to match the two items.

However, it isn’t essential for your wedding invitations and the order of service to match! Your order of service is designed to cover the ceremony, not the rest of the day. This means you can opt for almost any presentation style for your order of service, as long as the order of service fits with what you want for your special day.

Consider one of these styles for your order of service, or simply create your own approach:

  • Formal

You can opt for the traditional and formal order of service which lists the events of the day, usually with the aid of calligraphy. Ideally, you’ll add in some floral touches to complete the order of service. 

  • Guest Book

However, if you’re looking for something a little different then consider adopting a guest book approach to your order of service.

Each page has a couple of pictures relevant to the announcement on that page. For example, the thank you page could have a picture of your bridal party. Ideally, they should be in a funny pose to ensure your order of service is fun!

  • The Night Sky

Another option for your order of service, especially if you’re getting married in the evening or the winter, is the night sky.

Simply fill your order of service with stars, perhaps even recognizable constellations, and keep the color dark. The order of service will feel warm, inviting, and special! 

The bottom line is that your order of service must reflect what you want for your special day. Considering what you want others to remember and what you want to take away from one of the most important days of your life. Then, base your order of service on this, you can’t go wrong if you’re happy with it!

Also, check out these ultimate wedding invite ideas.


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