Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Anatomy of a Wedding Program- What's in it and Do You Need it?

Wedding programs are what some might consider a necessary evil. Personally, I like them for several reasons. First, it gives you a chance to introduce your wedding party without formally doing so, and even let people know how you know them. Second, it's a nice way to give rememberance to those family members who have passed on. Third, it gives your guests something to do with their hands, and if it's a ceremony many might be unfamiliar with, it also lets your guests know what's going to happen when. Fourth, 15 years later, it may help you remember what actually happened at your wedding without having to break out your wedding DVD (this happened to me recently, though it's only been nine and a half years).

So what should go into your program and how many should you get? Well, it really depends on how much information you want to give out and what your budget is for programs. In considering how many to order, a good rule of thumb is one per couple, plus 15-20% more for singles and keepsakes. As for content, I've done small programs, and I've done HUGE programs. A 6-8 page program, even if it's small in size, could still end up being more expensive than your invitations. There's a ton of time that goes into setting them up, there are many changes that need to be made (because you do NOT want to spell your future grandma-in-law's name wrong) and it's all very last minute. The more time you can devote to them the better. But I would break down your wedding program into the following:

The necessary:
The ceremony:
processional, music, readings, recessional

The Bridal Party:
Your parents, his parents, the officiant, bridesmaids and groomsmen (including your maid of honor and best man )

The nice:
A note of rememberance, or thank you to parents

Directions if reception is at a different site

Information about your ceremony if it is different from the norm (if you are doing a handfasting ceremony for example, it would be nice to give your guests a little history of the ceremony).

If you are considering a wedding program, let your stationer know in your initial consultation that you are thinking of doing them so that she can let you know the approximate timeline for these and when she'll need the information.

~Carey@Lasso'd Moon Designs

Photos courtesty of Lasso'd Moon Designs (top) and paperzest (bottom).

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