Post # 1
I’ve seen way too many pics of other weddings with guests holding up iPads, standing in the aisle to take a picture, etc. I do not want anyone blocking our photographer – I’d be so mad if she missed something because of some rude guest. Most of the unplugged wedding signs I’ve seen go something like this “we invite you to be fully present in the moment, please turn off devices” etc.
That wording is ok, but I would prefer to get the point across that the reason we are doing this is not so that you pay attention, but so that you stay out of the way. Is there a nice way of saying that? Something like…
Welcome to our unplugged ceremony!
Please turn off all cameras and devices, and sit back and relax while our professional photographer captures this special occasion without obstruction/interruption/issues (what word to use here?)
We promise to share with you the many beautiful pictures she will capture today.
How does that sound? Suggestions?
Also, I don’t want this thread to turn into an argument between two sides of opinion. I am fully aware that not everyone agrees with unplugged weddings, thinks it’s rude, etc. My mind is made up to do this, I’m just looking for advice on how to do this from other brides who have/plan to as well. Thanks ladies!
Post # 3
- Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA
We had one for many of the same reasons and announced it in two ways.
We had a ceremony “program” that was info written out on a window pane, set up at the ceremony site. Part of it read “Please no cameras during the ceremony – we promise to share photos!”
Then we had our officiant make an announcement at the very beginning, because let’s get real, people don’t read half the time. He said something like “before we begin, the bride and groom would like to respectfully request that you keep your cameras and phones off during the ceremony. They have arranged some excellent photographers to capture this part of the day, and they’ll happily share all the pictures with anyone who is interested. So for now, please just sit back and enjoy the next few minutes.”
Nobody complained and it was SO nice to see all those smiling faces instead of a thousand phones and cameras. And we did make a photosharing site (smugmug.com) and will upload pro photos so people can download them.
The only downside is that you have to wait foreverrrrrrrr to see photos of the ceremony!!!
ETA: oh and we also told some people (family etc) ahead of time so they wouldn’t be surprised. I forgot to tell my one friend who fancies herself a super pro hobbyist photographer and she may have been annoyed… but oh well.
Post # 4
I had an unplugged ceremony
I had the officiant do a quick announcement prior to the start of the ceremony.
It worked out great…. except for the one guest that showed up right after the speech was made and whipped out her cell phone during the processional…..
A few relatives made some comments about it….. but in the end I do not regret doing it…..
Post # 5
- Wedding: September 2014 - Banff, Alberta
On our website: Outdoor ceremony in the meadow beside the Buffalo Mountain Lodge. We would like an unplugged ceremony so please keep your cameras and phones put away. Make sure to stick around for a group photo of everyone after the ceremony.
On the wedding program:
We request that you put down your cameras and cell phones and be truly present at our ceremony. We are happy to share our professional photos later and the greatest gift you can give us is to experience the moment with us and not through a camera screen.
Post # 6
@lolot: Oh yes, that’s a good idea to have an announcement as well. And yah, I was torn about it because it would be awesome to see pics right away but I’d rather wait longer for awesome pics than have mediocre pics now and possibly blocked ones later.
@californiabride2013: Hopefully we don’t have any latecomers! And I hope she didn’t ruin any of your pics by doing that.
Thanks for the input ladies.
Post # 7
I planned on asking the pastor to say something like “the couple has asked that you please refrain from using cameras or phones during the ceremony…”
However, I forgot to tell him and fortunately it worked out fine. Ppl took pictures but I didn’t notice at all and they didn’t get in the way of anything. Although, I know some ppl aren’t so courteous…
Post # 8
- Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA
@Pinkmoon: Sure, no problem. And just to note, I don’t think it’s necessary to add stuff about being “truly present” or “taking the experience in fully” or your photographer taking photos “without obstruction” etc etc… I think that stuff gets a little annoying and preachy IMO. People don’t need to hear justification, they’ll figure it out.
And also, people who don’t read wedding blogs won’t necessarily know what an “unplugged” wedding is. I said that to a few people and they ALL thought it meant cordless / not mic’ed. Which makes a lot more sense than this meaning. So I think that phrasing just gets confusing and unnecessary..
Anyway, sorry to throw ALL the opinions at you – I spent a lot of time pondering this stuff this summer though! 🙂
Post # 9
@IzzyBear: That’s lucky! We have some guests that I don’t know at all, and my fiancé doesn’t either (his parents’ Asian friends) so I can’t predict how they might act. I’d rather be safe than sorry I think!
@lolot: That’s a good point, I would have had no idea what that meant until I started reading wedding websites. And I’m thinking of simplifying the wording to just mention that we will share photos, as well as have the officiant make a quick announcement. I don’t want to come across as a dick, as much as I might want to sometimes!
Post # 10
@Pinkmoon: “Welcome, friends and family! Good evening, everyone. Please be seated. Dan and Jennifer invite you to be truly present at this special time. Please, turn off your cell phones and put down your cameras. The photographer will capture how this moment looks — I encourage you all to capture how it feels with your hearts, without the distraction of technology. If Dan can do it, then so can you.”
I got this from this website 🙂
I plan to put it on my invite, wedding website, on ceremony programs, have the officiant say it, and I’m also having a somewhat unplugged reception as well, for the dances, so we will put something at the table. For the first dance we’ll be having 36inch sparklers so hopefully they’ll be too busy holding those anyways and won’t think of it.
Post # 11
Post # 12
“The bride and groom are looking forward to seeing your faces, not your camera phones” feels more true to me. Then again, those who know me know I would rather be in the moment than recording it.
Post # 13
@Pinkmoon: I created a photo sharing site and put the address on the order of service with a message saying that we would prefer people not to take photos during the ceremony (it was in a church and I find it a bit inappropriate) but afterwards please snap away and to share them on the photo site rather than on facebook or other social networks. It worked really well, noot a single pic on Facebook before we put some up, and only 1 person discreetly took a couple of photos of the ceremony.
Post # 14
@Pinkmoon: I’ve got a page on our wedding site that has this wording, along with links to 2 articles:
“We are so excited to share our big day with all of you. We are asking for an ‘unplugged’ ceremony so that our guests who are able to attend the big day can be fully present as we exchange our vows and start our life together. You are welcome to take photos during the reception but please leave the ceremony photography to our amazing photographers from [XXXXXXX] and be courteous of their shots as they continue to document our celebration throughout the night.”
The articles touch on guests getting in the way of the photographers and what their own flashes can do to the professional shots, etc.
Post # 15
I am wondering about this, too. I really don’t want to see the backs of 1,000 iphones, but part of it has to do with my anxiety. I am going to be nervous enough with everyone looking me, WITHOUT worrying about anything stupid I do being preserved for posterity on Facebook…
Post # 16
- Wedding: October 2014 - Church
@Pinkmoon: Really great article from a couple years ago on Offbeat Bride with suggested wording. Some interesting commentary below the article, too. http://offbeatbride.com/2011/06/unplugged-wedding-templates