Post # 1
My husband and I will be married 15 years next year, and we are planning on having the wedding we never had. Long story short, when we got married the first time we ran off to vegas with no friends or family present.
We are having the big ceremony & reception, and I plan to have the big white dress and attendants. We are not asking or expecting gifts, or doing the bachelor/bachelorette party. Nor are we having a shower, or bouquet/garter toss. I came across a blog (well it was more like one woman’s rant) that said it was bad etiquette, and rude to the guests to do a vow renewal like a wedding.
I’m wondering what everyone else thinks. I know others who have gone this route and It’s becoming increasingly popular.
Post # 3
I don’t think a vow renewal is in poor taste, but I would draw the line at attendents. To me a vow renewal is a more simple affair then a wedding. (I personally don’t feel vows need to be renewed, since they don’t expire).
But I am in for a big party. Maybe call it an anniversary party and then have a surprise ceremoney of renewals.
Post # 4
I’m for an anniversary party as well! I do think vows shouldn’t expire as well 🙂 BUT I don’t see anything wrong with vow renewals either though.
I am also of the mindset that you get one big day. I had no family or guests present when I got married to my ex the first time (10 years ago), so I understand the feeling for sure. I actually attempted to redo it all, but the people just were not excited about it.
Would you still opt for an awesome anniversary party? Wear a lovely white dress, say your vows again if you feel strongly about it. I probably woudn’t do attendants either however. I’d even do anniversary cake cutting and dancing for this anniversary party.
I’m sorry probably not what you want to hear. Just don’t go asking this on TheKnot.com.
Post # 5
I’m torn on this one. I kind of do like @andielovesj:‘s idea about having it be an anniversary party and then surprising everyone with the renewals. Or I like the idea of doing the renewals, wearing the white dress, but not having the attendants. I feel like there’s a middle ground between having the big over-the-top wedding and a smaller low key renewal that still evokes the same feeling and vibe as the over-the-top wedding. I think you just have to find the “wedding” ideas that are more suited to a renewal than a first time wedding, and that might mean changing a few things here and there, but I think it can be done.
Post # 6
I am one of those pricklers that feels vow renewals are great but “big white vow renewals” are inappropriate.
It’s one thing if it’s a situation where the couple had to have a quick ceremony due to a relative’s illness, or impending combat duty, or some other kind of emergency, and the actual big event happens within a year or so after the little quiet elopement.
But if a couple chooses of their own free will to elope then I think they need to own that decision they made as adults and embrace it! Especially after a decade or more of being a married couple both legally and socially. Elopements are wonderful and weddings are wonderful but generally speaking they are mutually exclusive things. If you choose one you can’t have the other, too. Weddings are supposed to mark a change in your status – you go from being a single person, socially, to part of a married couple – and you made that change long ago and celebrated it in your own special way at the time that it actually happened.
That doesn’t mean you can’t have a grand party or wear a pretty dress. But bridesmaids aren’t necessary (you won’t be a bride) and I would skip the big white dress. I mean you can still wear white just probably nothing ballgowny or with a train.
You can still have a great time celebrating your love! 15 years of being wedded bliss is no small accomplishment!
Post # 7
I would probably skip the attendants, but I see no reason why your party and dress can’t be as big as you’d like. Even if it isn’t a true wedding, it’s still your party and you call the shots! I hope you thoroughly enjoy it, and congratulations on 15 years of marriage!
Post # 8
I’m with Poodles: I love vow renewals and with the divorce rate sky rocketing it’s an awesome opportunity to make those promises all over again.
I would draw the line at the attendants and the big dress; there’s no need for all those extras if what you want to do is truly renew your vows to each other.
I vote party minus the PPD extras.
Post # 9
@Snapier: We plan on having a vow renewal in the future and I don’t think you are planning for too much, especially since you aren’t asking for gifts.
Post # 10
I’m so on the fence about this one. Part of me thinks that the big white dress and the attendants is over the top. I love the idea of a vow renewal but something smaller and more classy, as I do agree with a PP that it was your decision to elope.
However, there are many encore brides that get to have a second wedding with the big white dress and attendants so I don’t see why someone who wants a second wedding to the same person shouldn’t be allowed that.
So ultimately, I say do whatever makes you happy. You want the big wedding then go for it. But be aware that there may be some eye rolling from some of your guests and comments during the planning.
Post # 11
My Darling Husband and I have been married for 7 years and we never had the big wedding the first time around, just the JoP. Now, however, we are doing the whole shebang! My Darling Husband has 2 best men, his 2 oldest sons, I have one Bridesmaid or Best Man, my step daughter. The ring bearers are our two little boys together and the flower girls are the grand daughters and my niece. We are having a caterer, a pastor, a walk down the isle, the WHOLE thing and I cannot wait. My dress isn’t white but it is GORGEOUS! I think you can do what ever the hell you want. Besides, if someone is going to judge you based on the fact that your renewal is more wedding-like (like mine) then they don’t need to be at your wedding.
Have a blast and DO IT UP!
Post # 12
Thanks everyone, I love the opinions. I have been on-the-fence about attendants, though I do want my daughter to stand next to me, and she is super excited about it. My husband was insistant on the white dress, but I’ve got him leaning more to my side, of a champange colored one instead.
And thanks for the congrats!
Post # 13
I do want to clarify something… as I have read through some (very rude) comments on other posts, I do not consider my first wedding a fake wedding, or not the real thing. I made a commitment to my spouse and stand by those vows. we have had our struggles, and those vows helped us through.
I have always wanted the big wedding, and this is something my husband and I have planned. we are not trying to pass it off as a wedding, invitations state it’s a vow renewal, and the pastor is doing a recommitment ceremony. I am walking down the ailse to Shania Twains “looks like we’ve made it” and not a wedding march. We are including our children in the ceremony (that’s why I say attendants) and I want to include my sister for the fact that she is having a sort of “crisis of faith”. She is depressed and feels disconnected from the family cause she cannot afford to travel (she is in OK, the family is in OH). I can’t visit due to work, and Our parents don’t visit cause… well to be honest they are pretentious aholes. I have made arrangements to pay for her travel and dress, and I want her to feel like she is part of my family.
Post # 14
I second the idea of the party, and not having attendants (unless they are your kids).
My own personal preference is for vow renewals to be private; my Fiance and I would love a private ceremony but its not happening so we figure on one of our many year anniversaries (10, 15, 20, etc) we will have a private vow renewal in Hawaii.
But you’ve never had the big wedding so I understand the appeal. Have you tried bouncing it off guests to see what they think?
Post # 15
totally go for the anniversary party idea. it’s less scary/formal sounding and more celebratory.
Post # 16
I honestly roll my eyes people who have an issue with this. Everyone deserves a chance to wear the dress and have the party. My aunt and uncle had a huge vow renewal after they been married 25 years and all of their kids were in their early twenties/late teens. She wore a white dress, had a ceremony at a church the whole shebang. It was a pretty wedding, and very beautiful and it was awesome that she finally able to have a wedding. I loved it and as far as I know no one had anything awful to say about it. If any one is offended they can turn down the invite. Have your wedding party and big dress and enjoy yourself, who cares what anyone else thinks of it.