All you need is love and … someone to walk down the aisle with or not!
The whole wedding process is steeped in so much tradition, and one of the traditions is the father of the bride walking her down the aisle and ‘giving her away’. It is said that the custom dates back to a time when the daughter was considered to be property and the groom had to pay a price before he was permitted to marry his intended. Another theory is the ‘giving away’ symbolised the transition of authority from the bride’s father to her husband as she moved from the family home into her married home. Today the act of ‘giving away’ the bride is seen more as a symbolic blessing by the parents of the marriage to the groom.
If the idea of walking down the aisle scares the bejesus out of you, or just doesn’t sit right with you, either because you don’t want the attention, or the traditional father/bride relationship or non-relationship does not fit the circumstances, then there are a number of alternatives to the whole ‘walking down the aisle” Instead of the traditional view of ‘giving away’ you could think of it as the person is supporting you through this life transistion.
It’s extremely common for a bride to choose someone other than her father to walk her down the aisle: mother, grandparents, siblings, good friends, both mum and dad, own children and even the family dog.
Walking down together
I have seen this done at a wedding, one of the reasons being that the groom was very shy, and didn’t want the focus before the ceremony to be on him. There is something very sweet, and I imagine, reassuring to walk into your wedding ceremony hand in hand.
If you feel confident and comfortable enough, just mossey up the aisle yourself.
Meet your groom halfway
Start the journey by yourself, or even with someone else and meet your groom halfway up the aisle.
Make a bouquet as you walk
Have someone give flowers out to your guests either the guests sitting on the end of rows, or maybe close family and friends, before the ceremony and gather these flowers up into a bouquet, as you walk down the aisle. It is a nice, meaningful way to include some of your guests in the ceremony.
Ceremony circle or spiral
There’s no rules that say your ceremony space has to have a straight up and down aisle. You can create a spiral shape using your chairs, and walk along this spiral. This gives you a chance to see all your guests on your journey. Alternatively create a circle shape, and just leave a small hole for you to enter into, and then you and your groom will be encircled by your loved ones.
No walking down the aisle
If you don’t want to walk down the aisle at all, you can just mingle with your guests before the ceremony begins and then just move to the front when it’s time to start. One bride I know had alot of fun running around with the kids, barefoot before her wedding started.
Have the guests enter after you
Keep your ceremony space private and closed prior to the wedding starting, and then position yourselves in your desired spots either with bridal party or not and then open the doors and invite your guests in to be seated.
Lead a processional
Lead your guests, you could even use a musician, to your ceremony space with a processional. When you get there, make your way to the front and let your guests be seated before you begin.
Enter from the side
Enter the ceremony at the same time from different sides, takes the emphasis off the bride, and there’s no need for an aisle at all.
Create your ceremony space with two aisles, and both walk down your own aisle. This is very popular with same-sex weddings, and can be appropriate when parents don’t have any daughters and want to walk their son down the aisle.
I think there are more than enough options if you don’t want to do the traditional walk down the aisle. Just remember it’s your day, so do it your way.