Archive for August 1st, 2007

Something Old, Something New… And Something Unique

Wednesday, August 1st, 2007

Most brides want to personalize their weddings so that they are not carbon copies of every other nuptial event. Some are more successful at this than others. But I can’t recall one with more distinctive touches than I saw this past Saturday night.

To begin with, beside the traditional bridal portrait at the registration table was an honest-to-God oil painting of the bride, given as a wedding gift. It captured not only the image of its subject, but also her spirit and personality. As such, it made for a dramatic and memorable entrance to the reception.

The bride and groom’s entry and first dance were traditional, but – an hour later – the bride disappeared for a few minutes to set up the next surprise. Soon, she appeared at the top of a grand stairway. Escorted down the steps by her father for the “Daddy Dance,” she now wore her own mother’s wedding gown. The following song was a sentimental Golden Oldie the groom’s mother had sung to him as a lullaby. Only this time, as the groom danced with his Mom (who was still singing the words to him) nobody napped.

Even the departure varied from the norm. I’ve seen rice, rose petals, and bubbles used to shower the bride and groom as they leave. But this time, each guest was handed a 3-foot-long wand, at the end of which was a little wedding bell and a streamer. Standing in two lines, the guests formed a musically-ringing archway through which the bridal couple stepped out into their new life together. It was emotional, exceptional, and terrific!

Now – not every couple has a talented painter for a friend. Nor can every bride fit into her mom’s wedding gown (if Mom even had such a dress.) Sentimental songs from childhood might or might not be appropriate. But it wasn’t these elements in themselves that made them so special at the reception. It was the imagination that went into each facet of the evening. I wouldn’t have noticed the stairway, but this bride had – and saw a perfect way to incorporate it into the night. What separated this reception from so many others was the spark of creative energy that visualized how – and when – to depart from the ordinary.

I no longer even pretend to remember every single wedding I’ve attended. But this one will retain a treasured place in my heart for decades to come.