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It takes months and months of planning a wedding. Fortunately, our wonderful staff at Gruene Estate is always there to answer questions, get to know our brides on a deeper level, and enjoy watching them go through the process of planning their beautiful day. As venue operators it is an amazing opportunity to see each and every one of them walk to the alter and exchange vows in an intimate and meaningful way. Since we see witness couples do this on a weekly, we feel like we are experts in art of the vow, and can give you some sage advice on writing and exchanging them.

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There is nothing wrong with finding inspiration from other places and sources. Each couple wants to come up with their own vows that are unique to them, but look for inspiration in easy to find places to get you pointed in the right direction. The helpful place to start would be within the religion or faith that you practice. In Christian wedding ceremonies, a common example would be:

I, _____, take you, ______, to be my wedded husband. With deepest joy I come into my new life with you. As you have pledged to me your life and love, so I too happily give you my life, and in confidence submit myself to your headship as to the Lord. As is the church in her relationship to Christ, so I will be to you. _____, I will live first unto our God and then unto you, loving you, obeying you, caring for you and ever seeking to please you. God has prepared me for you and so I will ever strengthen, help, comfort, and encourage you. Therefore, throughout life, no matter what may be ahead of us, I pledge to you my life as an obedient and faithful wife.”

These basic vows give you a nice foundation which will allow you customize them however you choose. Add your personal touch to the exchange of the vows.

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Considering the tone of your vows is an important part of the planning process. Take time to sit down with your partner before you write them and decide a few things: are they going to be humorous, poetic, serious? Do you want to write them together or maybe separately and surprise each other?   We have seen a trend of couples writing their vows together, but writing a personal note to each other that is exchanged prior to the ceremony for their eyes only. This way, you get the best of both worlds and it creates a special moment prior to the days events.

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Do you struggle with writer’s block? Create a basic outline of what you want to say, take time to jot down a few notes about your relationship and think about the feelings you felt when you first met. Have you been through hard times? What emotions do you feel when you think about the other person? How does that person inspire you? Is there a funny story or something that is endearing about your soon to be husband? The options are limitless here. The important thing is to take some time to think about what you want to say, and how you want to communicate your feelings to your spouse.

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Write out your vows and avoid the clichés, and refine your work. It is ok to use other sources for inspiration, but make sure that you are not relying on phrases or sayings that are used over and over. Make the vows personal, and use the list of ideas and characteristics that you previously jotted down to write out your vows and create first draft.   Read it out loud and practice it several times. Reading it out loud will help you make the appropriate adjustments and correct awkward, repetitive, or unwanted phrases. Your goal here should be to create personally written set of vows that are around 2 minutes in length, meaningful, and not repetitive.

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After you have completed your vows and made the alterations to your liking, rewrite a clean draft without the notes, mark-ups, and cross outs. This is a great opportunity to transfer your vows into a small journal, scroll, or other unique type of medium that adds an authentic and personal touch to your exchanging of the vows!\

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Exchanging your vows on your wedding day is one of the most intimate parts of your ceremony. Having a well thought out and edited set of vows is a sweet way to communicate how much you are in love with your spouse. Writing your own vows might seem daunting and difficult, but it'll be so worth it when you're at the altar.   

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