(Closed) Sabre/Sword Arch HOW??

posted 10 years ago in Military
Post # 3
Member
2324 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

Hmm…I’m not sure. I always assumed that you had to have some sort of military connection. Do you just like the look of it?

Post # 4
Member
228 posts
Helper bee

I’m not sure what you mean… do you mean where to get the sabres?  Or where to get people to form the arch for you?  Usually a sabre arches are only performed at military weddings, meaning that either you or your fiance would be in the military.

I’m guessing that you want to honor a deceased family member?  I might be wrong about this, but I don’t think children of military members usually have military weddings, unless of course they are in the service as well.  So I’m not really sure how this would work.

It might be trickier if you have no direct ties to the military since you would need people to form the arch.  (Usually this would be people that you or your fiance knew from the military, like a wedding party.)  Maybe try your contacting base chaplain or ROTC chapter?

We originally planned to have a sabre arch at our wedding (husband is in the Army), but we ended up having a lot of trouble borrowing enough sabres for everyone, and they’re very expensive to buy.  Feel free to email me though- I did a bunch of research leading up to it: peihan [at] hotmail [dot] com.

Hope that helps, anyway   

Post # 6
Member
34 posts
Newbee

I can offer some information in this area.  As a naval officer, I have participated in many sword arches (the Army calls them sabers for officers, whereas the Navy says swords).  In the Navy/Coast Guard, only commissioned officers may have a sword arch, but I believe in the Army, non-commissioned officers may as well.  If you or your fiance are not military officers, then unfortunately you cannot have a sword arch at your wedding.  Often, military groups participate in public relations/community events, but will not do a sword arch for private events.  It is not like a Color Guard, etc., where you can hire them for events.

ROTC Units will NOT do sword arches for weddings unless you/your fiance are military officers-when I was in NROTC we did them for people getting married in the area, but we verified that one/both were in the military.

I agree that they photograph extremely well and are very exciting, but unfortunately there are rules governing their use.

Post # 7
Member
2324 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

Thank you Navy Bride. I went and asked my father last night (He is a Annapolis Grad) and he said the same thing. You saved me some typing. I’ve always thought of the sword thing as a sort of reward for being in the Armed Services. LOL You know…put your life on the line defending our country, get a cool sword thing when you get married. It would take away from it if it was done all the time for whoever, IMO

Post # 8
Member
22 posts
Newbee

In the Army, only commissioned officers can hold the sabres as well.

Post # 9
Member
436 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2010 - Casa Real at Ruby Hill Winery

I’m wondering about how this works too. My FH is in the Air Force. Can his AF buddies do it or do they have trained people that can do it? I am not sure how to go about doing this, and he doesn’t know much either. He says he will ask the chaplain, but does anyone know the procedure? Thanks!

Post # 10
Member
3526 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

I’m not sure of the right terminology. But I think there are specific people who among their regular jobs have the added training of performing these. For example, the FI’s brother & SIL are both in the AF and are trained & qualified to perform the services for fellow AF wo/man’s funeral. Again, excuse me because I’m not sure of the proper terms. But I would think the proper way to do it would be for the Fiance to ask his superior.

And I’m sorry if this is terribly blunt. But I think when these ceremonies get performed it’s an honour for the men and women who serve. Most times when you see a funeral with them there it brings a tear to your heart because these men and woman have now passed and quite possibly died serving our country. Same thing with weddings, it’s a military/Army/AF/Navy/etc personnel that is getting married and they get special recognition for it. I don’t think a regular civilian should get that honour at their wedding just because they like the "look" of it.

ETA: Bean, not sure how accurate this is, but check this out!

Air Force Arch

Service Etiquette by Oretha Swartz

Post # 11
Member
134 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

Gerbera, I agree with you. The only reason I hadn’t posted earlier was because I thought some of the other posters had made it clear that arches are only for qualified members of the military when they get married. In fact, with a slight (very small) possibility that my fiance won’t get commissioned after West Point due to a wrist injury, I’ve realized that while I’d still get married there, we’d omit the arch. Its purpose is to ensure safe passage into military life, and that wouldn’t apply for us.

 I love the arch and I’m so excited to have it in our wedding – but it has a very specific purpose and symbolism!

Post # 12
Member
3 posts
Wannabee

I think the it really stinks that we can only do this service if my husband is an officer.  He’s been in the military for 20 years and deserves the sword service just as much as an officer does.

Post # 13
Member
782 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2010

Danalea05 – I would look into it and talk to people at your base. If he’s enlised I don’t see why you still wouldn’t be able to have one (of course, that’s just my personal opinion…and we all know how much our opinons are taken when it comes to military matters!). Maybe it’s just a matter of talking to the right people. I 100 percent completely can understand why someone not in the service – or with no affillition to a service member can’t receive the honor, but not someone who’s in the military! Definitely look into it!

Post # 14
Member
29 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: January 2010

Its not a “service”, I don’t think you can hire people out for it. Our friends (army officers) have all borrowed sabers from the local ROTC offices and have had wedding guests in their dress blues do the arch- no special training (practiced beforehand though). We are planning on waiting to see if enough officers are able to attend to make ours possible. Saber arches are for officers because traditionally sabers are part of their dress uniforms. I think NCO’s carry swords, so you could have a sword arch. If you are inviting between 4-8 NCOs or even some officers you could see if they would perform it, but it would be awkward as your husband would have to salute the higher ranks since they would be in uniform. Best bet would be to inquire around to see if you can get the swords, then check out your guest list to see if you would have enough present!

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