This is the part of the ceremony where the bridal party are walking down the aisle. This is obviously the area where the emotions are at their peak, everyone is awaiting the arrival of the bride/s, groom/grooms and things are feeling pretty tense, but don't stress, you walk every day and are going to be fine to walk on your wedding day too.
In saying that, there are a lot of variables and options when walking down the aisle to think about so read on for more details.
First we consider the staging of the ceremony, before the walk-
Traditionally if there is a Bride and Groom, the Groom will stand on right from the view of the guests and the Bride on the left.
In the instance of same sex couple, you may both choose to walk down the aisle individually, walk down together, just one walk down and one wait at the end or neither, its totally up to you.
Please consider any possible issues with seating arrangements and advise if and how you would like them dealt with them on the day.
Consider any particular instructions for the furniture/props: including arbours, chairs and signing table.
Groomsman should be positioned by your celebrant and bridesmaids should be advised to mirror the position of the groomsman.
Groomsman will usually try to look as uniform as possible. If they are having jackets, the top button should be done but not the bottom.
Button holes on their left-hand breast panel.
Hands should be in front with one hand around the others wrist with watches on the same side, phones out of pockets and sunnies should be put away for the ceremony.
New suit jackets will always have a stitch holding the jacket panels together so make sure they cut these before the day
Make sure someone knows how to re-do a tie.
Ensure someone in the bridal party has anything either member of the couple may think they will need for the ceremony, if they usually gets a dry mouth when nervous- have water, if they think they may cry- have tissues.
Consider your order and what is important in determining that order for you- relationship with them, height etc.
Traditionally Groomsman wait with the groom and the maids walk themselves.
Alternatively, the groomsman can walk arm in arm with the bridesmaids and separate at the altar.
Consider if you would you like a standing arrival- Think- “Would you please now stand for the arrival of the bride”
Now on to the walk
Kids and bridesmaids
Children traditionally walk down before bridesmaids.
Have a think about where will flower girls/ ring bearers go at the end of the aisle- Consider a “landing zone” eg. A mat/rug, specified seating, grandparents to meet at the end etc.
The bridesmaid on the outside (furthest from bride) will be the first to walk.
Get your bridesmaids to have a listen to the song before the day so they are aware of the pace of the music.
It looks great if bridesmaids can try and hold the bottom of their flowers at their belly button, it helps for a uniformed look.
Let your bridesmaids know not to rush their walk, it’s better to go to slow than too fast.
The groom/bride waiting at the end will sometimes stand forward to acknowledge bridesmaids with a simple nod or a kiss on the cheek.
Let your bridesmaids know, when standing at the alter stand up straight, hold your flowers low and let them know they are allowed to smile and they are allowed to cry.
Bridal shoes can be very uncomfortable, if you have time to practice walking in them before the big day it may be worth your time.
A different song may be used for the bridal party and then a separate one for the bride.
If we have two brides entering with their own bridesmaids, a song would be allocated to each side so that no rushing occurs.
Depending on the length of your walk 4 is usually the maximum for one song.
Its show time! So shoulders back, smile if you can as your partner would love to see that you are happy to be marrying them!
There isn’t any right or wrong way to have your walk, if you want to pause and take your time then do it, if you want to acknowledge any of your guests and your escort then go for it – there’s no rush, your groom isn’t going anywhere trust me.
If walking with an escort consider what side you would like to walk on, traditionally the escort will be in between the couple when they reach the end of the aisle.
If you are walking with an escort, its really helpful if they are greeted when they get to the end, with a simple handshake or a hug, whatever you're into.
Variations on the procession may include closing doors after bridesmaids enter and re open before the bride enters, waiting for a musical queue or rises in songs for the bride’s entrance.
Remember if you think you are going to be ok with one song, the bride will be the one who runs out of music so better to be safe than sorry.
When you arrive at the end, after the handshake/hug with your escort if you are having one, they will either be asked for the giving away and then sit down or simply asked to take their seat.
You will then ship off your flowers to either the closest bridesmaid or the signing table, we will then ensure your dress is looking perfectly fluffed and then you will asked to join hands.
And that's as hard as it gets!
Some links to other resources that may hep with the "Processional" below-