Looking to tie the knot in an intimate and adventurous way? As an elopement photographer, I’ve had the pleasure of witnessing many beautiful elopements, and one thing that stands out is the power of a personalized ceremony script. In this post, I’ll share why having a ceremony script can make your elopement even more meaningful and explain the concept of self-solemnizing.
Not a lot of people can say they’ve witnessed an elopement, but we can. We’ve witnessed handfuls of self solemnizing wedding ceremonies, and we are more than happy to help you decide what yours should look like. We will give you some ideas, suggest a few things that you shouldn’t skip, and lay out an exact template to really get the process started. Now remember, this is your wedding day, so keep in mind that you already have the answers for what you’re looking for. They’re all in your mind. They’re the memories, the little moments, it’s what is important to the two of you that matters. You just need some help coming up with it, organizing, and planning it. We are so excited to help you come up with your very own elopement ceremony script!
Why would you need an elopement ceremony script?
Picture this: you and your beloved, standing together, hand in hand, gazing into each other’s eyes. You’re about to say “I do,” but there’s no stuffy officiant there to interrupt your moment. That’s right, folks, it’s time to talk about self solemnizing!
What is self solemnizing?
Self solemnizing is like a DIY wedding ceremony, but without all the craft supplies (unless you count your wedding attire, of course!). It’s the perfect option for couples who want to keep things simple and intimate, or who just can’t decide on an officiant. And if you’re in Colorado, you can even skip the awkward small talk with witnesses – you and your boo can tie the knot all by yourselves!
Now, I know what you’re thinking – “But Kelly, is this even legal?” Well, my friend, the answer is a resounding yes! Several states, including Colorado, recognize self solemnizing as a valid way to get hitched. No more waiting for your cousin’s best friend’s roommate to become an ordained minister – you can be your own officiant, and save some cash in the process.
So, if you’re ready to take the plunge and solemnize yourself, be sure to do your research and follow the guidelines in your state. And remember, the best part of self solemnizing is that you get to make your elopement ceremony uniquely yours – whether you want to recite your vows while skydiving or in your pajamas, the choice is yours!
Solemnizing your own elopement ceremony is your chance to throw out the rulebook and create a ceremony that’s uniquely and unapologetically you. Want to recite Star Wars vows while dressed as Jedi knights? Go for it! Want to incorporate a ritual that involves lighting sparklers and screaming your love from a mountaintop? Why not have some fun! With a killer self solemnizing elopement ceremony script, you’ll be well on your way to having the wedding adventure of a lifetime.
Elopement Ceremony Script Guide
Must Haves for any Elopement Ceremony
There are a few elements of an elopement ceremony script that we would suggest not skipping over. No matter how unique your elopement ceremony ends up being, you’ll still want to:
- Recite vows to your partner
- Exchange rings
- Have a declaration of consent (the I do’s)
- Have that first kiss of being a married couple
Of course, this is your big day, and if any of these bullet points sound lame to you, then kick it to the wind and feel good about it! Your elopement ceremony script is yours and only yours. We’re here for it and will be happy with whatever you decide to do!
Ideas & Suggestions
Write Your Own Vows
There is no better way to really personalize your elopement ceremony than writing your own wedding vows. If this is something you’re into, but don’t know where to start, check out this resource. We wrote an entire blog helping you write your own wedding vows. It also includes a template! Writing your own wedding vows doesn’t not have to be complicated. Use our template to help guide you.
Incorporate Personal Touches
Remember how I said in the introduction that you already know the answers? This is what I mean. Incorporating a personal touch into your elopement ceremony script is a great way to really represent your relationship during your ceremony. What’s something the two of you really enjoy? Are there any little things the two of you do, or any pieces of your relationship that you want to bring into your ceremony? It’s so fun seeing what couples come up with. You can literally do whatever the heck you want for your elopement ceremony! It can be something simple, or something grand, but either way it will be so meaningful and a great element to add to your day. So what could it look like?
Personal Touches to Incorporate during your Elopement Ceremony Script
- Music. Are either of you a musician? Maybe bring your instrument and perform a song. Or maybe the two of you could sing a favorite song together? If you’re not a musician, but there is a song you’d love to play, let us know and we’ll bring our mini bluetooth speaker. When Alex and I eloped, he brought his backpacking acoustic guitar and played a few of our favorite songs. It’s such a fun memory!
- Other forms of art. Painting. Drawing. Weaving. Is art an important part of your relationship? Incorporate it! Maybe you want to decorate your “Just Married” signs out in the wilderness together? Or you could create any piece of art together and have it to look back on. Creating momentos during an elopement ceremony can be super fun, and it’s just a great way to make an additional memory to look back on.
- Reciting a poem or a favorite piece of literature. Maybe there is a poem that reminds you of your partner that you’d like to read. Maybe it’s a poem you wrote and want to read it out loud to your partner?
- Drinks. Who says that alcohol is only for before or after a wedding ceremony? If you want something to sip on while having your ceremony, then do it!
- Dancing. Everyone has heard of the “First Dance”. But what if the “First Dance” doesn’t mean much to you, and you just want to dance during the middle of your ceremony? Think about the vibe you want to set for your ceremony. Playing a tune and getting jiggy with it can be a great way to set the tone. Or maybe you just love dancing and you two put together a choreographed dance?
- Pets. Are you bringing your fur babies to your elopement ceremony? In the state of Colorado, you can actually have your pet “sign” your marriage license! If you’re eloping in a state that doesn’t allow them to sign your marriage license, but still want to do something special to include your pets, dress them up! You could decorate their collar or leash, or even put them in a fun outfit! Pets are part of the family and can be a really special element to add to any elopement ceremony script. Read our blog on what to pack for an adventure elopement that includes a section all about what to pack if you’re bringing dogs!
- Love letters. Have your friends and/or family write you letters for the two of you to read during your elopement ceremony. This is also a great way to include those closest to you without them physically being present.
Are you wanting to include a unity ritual during your elopement ceremony? A unity ceremony is a ritual performed by the couple during your ceremony that represents becoming a union. There are many different kinds of unity ceremonies, but they all represent the two of you commiting your lives to one another. You could take one of the personal touches you’ve thought of above, and make it into a unity ceremony.
Unity Ceremony Ideas
This doesn’t have to be something you’ve heard of before. If you’re more on the goofy side, think of something completely off the wall that is just so silly, and never done before that it’s sure to make you two laugh and smile.
Acknowledge the Past, Present, and Future
Take a moment during your elopement ceremony script to really bring light to your whole relationship. More than likely, your entire relationship hasn’t been all rainbows and butterflies. You two have come so far to get to this exact moment. Talk about where you’ve been in your relationship, where you are right now in the present, and who you want to become as people and as a couple in the future. This is a great way to ground yourself, and become fully present in your ceremony.
Include Your Guests
Very few people can say they’ve witnessed a unique wedding ceremony such as an elopement. Your guests will be so honored they were invited to such an intimate affair. Asking them to be included in the ceremony will be a huge honor.
Ideas for Including your Guests During Your Elopement Ceremony
- Have your guest share memories of the happy couple
- Ask your guest to read a piece of literature
- Ask your guest to share their marriage advice
- Have everyone gather in a circle for prayer or a symbolic ritual
- Give each guest a role. For example, the Maid of Honor holds the flowers, the Best Man holds the rings, etc.
- Take time during your ceremony to speak to each guest. Tell them what they mean to you, and how happy you are they are there with you
- Take time to take photographs with each guest, and one picture with everyone
Need some location inspiration for your adventure elopement? Here is a list of the best places to elope in Colorado 👉
Elopement Ceremony Script Template
The Just Us Template – An Elopement Ceremony Script Template For Those Choosing to Get Married Just the Two of Them
Starting It Off – The Introduction
With just the two of you, this might seem unnecessary, but having a starting off point is a simple way to let eachother know you’re ready to start the ceremony. The wedding day jitters are real, and you’ll want to know if your partner is ready, and visa versa. Some ideas of a self solemnizing elopement ceremony introduction could be:
Self Solemnizing Elopement Ceremony Introduction Ideas
- Holding hands. Some couples naturally want to be close to their partner and hold hands during an exchange of vows, so taking your partner’s hand could be a great way to start things off. You can decide that once you hold hands, that’s your signal that you’re ready to start your elopement ceremony.
- Verbally making it known you’re ready. Saying simple words like, “are you ready?”, “let’s do this”, “I can’t wait to marry you!” can be a great starting point, and a really sweet moment to just take a few deep breaths, look into your partner’s eyes, and be completely present for what’s to come.
- Playing a song and walking down “the aisle”. If you’re wanting to keep some traditional aspects of a wedding ceremony alive for your elopement ceremony, consider playing a song and walking down “the aisle” – which would really be walking down a hiking trail, but you get what I mean 😉 Some people still want their partner to see them in their wedding attire for the first time by walking down an aisle, which can totally be set up in the wild!
Readings / Wedding Vows
You can either start your elopement ceremony off by going straight into your wedding vows, or you can ease into it. Adding any personal touches like reciting poems, or any other form of readings would go great here. Acknowledging the past, present, and future and talking to your relationship would work well here also. You’re not reading your vows & promises to your partner just yet, you’re recognizing where your relationship has been, where it is right now, and where it’s going. Then head into reciting your wedding vows. Be prepared that this part of the elopement ceremony could get very emotional, especially if you’re writing your own wedding vows.
The exchange of rings during a wedding ceremony is a tradition that goes back thousands of years. It symbolizes the promises you are making to each other. Exchanging rings during an elopement ceremony can be quick without saying anything while putting rings on each other’s fingers, or you can recite a reading while exchanging rings. If you decide you want to recite a reading while exchanging rings but don’t know what to say, here are a few ideas:
Ideas For What To Say While Exchanging Rings
- You can put the wedding ring on your partner’s finger while finishing up your vows, and skip creating separate words for the ring exchange
- Explain what the ring means to you in your marriage, there is a traditional, “with this ring, I thee wed”. Or you can say something like, “Let this ring be a symbol as my promises i’m making to you today.”
- Have this moment be where you say your “I Do’s”. While your partner is putting the ring on your finger, they would ask you, “Do you take me to be your partner for life?” In which you would respond, “hell yes!”, and your partner would then slide the ring on your finger. Then you do the same back to your partner 🙂
Declaration of Consent
If you did not say your “I Do’s” during the ring exchange, this would be the time to do it!
Seal the deal as being a married couple with a kiss! I don’t think I have to go into much detail for this one 😉
Unity Ceremony / Personal Touches
Totally optional, but if you’re deciding to add any personal touches like a Unity Ceremony, this would be the best time to do it! See above for our ideas and suggestions for adding your own personal touches to your elopement ceremony.
Making It Official
This is the time to make your marriage legal! If you’re in a self solemnizing state like Colorado, sign that wedding license if you haven’t already, and don’t forget to have your pets sign if that was in the plans! If you’re in a state where self solemnizing isn’t an option, this is where your officiant would sign your marriage license and have witnesses sign as well.
The Closing – Presenting Yourselves As the Newly Married Couple
You are MARRIED! Jump up and down, pop a bottle of champagne, take a shot, bang on some pots and pants, get down and do ten pushups, this is your day! However you want to present yourself is totally up to you!
We absolutely can not wait to see you two get married and document the entire experience. We hope this Elopement Ceremony Script Guide helps you come up with the perfect elopement ceremony for you.