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May 1, 2011 5:28 PM   Subscribe

Please help us think of some non-traditional wedding roles for our siblings.

So, cygnet and I are getting married in August! Yay!!!

We're planning a fairly non-traditional non-religious wedding ceremony, and we were hoping y'all could help us think of some nice ways to include our sisters (we each have one) and their significant others (one husband and one long-term boyfriend) in the ceremony.

We aren't having any bridesmaids/groomsmen/best man/maid of honor. Our ceremony so far is a bunch of our friends talking for a few minutes each, plus our parents and the officiant saying something, plus the usual exchange of vows/rings/kisses.

We were thinking of having our sisters act as ringbearers - any ideas for other things they could do in the wedding? We also want to include my sister's (recently married) husband, b/c we want him to feel like part of the family, and it would seem nice to have cygnet's sister's boyfriend do something symmetrical.

Any ideas? Thanks!
posted by Salvor Hardin to Human Relations (13 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
At my wedding, my Dad rang the gong and my Mom lit the firebowl.
posted by signal at 5:32 PM on May 1, 2011 [2 favorites]

Not sure if you have this covered, but for my sister's wedding I did a reading of their choice. It wasn't a speech I was making, per se, but rather a reading that meant something special to the couple.
posted by pompomtom at 5:34 PM on May 1, 2011 [1 favorite]

At my wedding my husband's 17-year-old sister was the "flower girl": she gave each guest an individual flower (I think they were daisies) as they entered the garden where our ceremony was held. People tucked them behind their ears, in their collars, braided them, tossed them at us - it is fun to see all the places they show up in our pictures.

Our brothers (three between us) and the sister also escorted grandparents in to the ceremony: the siblings on my side escorted the grandparents on his side, and vice versa.
posted by handful of rain at 5:43 PM on May 1, 2011

My sister wanted to be a traditional flower girl -- even though she was in her early 20s. It was traditional -- she scattered flower petals -- and it was great. It was so inspirational, that when she got married 10+ years my husband, then in his late 40s, was her flower girl.
posted by BlahLaLa at 6:02 PM on May 1, 2011 [6 favorites]

My sister did a reading, as did a few other special folks. It was nice.
posted by bluedaisy at 6:24 PM on May 1, 2011

How nontraditional are we talking here? I could see it being a lot of fun to have a formally typed-up program listing all of the participants with their "official" titles.

Jane Smith (Sister of the Bride)...............Balloon Wrangler
Joe Smith (Brother in Law of the Bride)...Chairperson of Chairs
John Doe (Brother of the Groom)...........Key Grip

I'm sure you could think of much funnier ones according to their interests or your own in-jokes.

I say this as someone whose childhood dream wedding consists of going to a courthouse, though, so YMMV.
posted by phunniemee at 6:31 PM on May 1, 2011 [5 favorites]

I recently heard about a wedding at which the couple hired a trained capucin monkey to be their ring bearer. Because the monkey couldn't be trusted to walk down the aisle with the rings unsupervised, one of the positions in their wedding party was "Monkey Bearer."
posted by decathecting at 6:38 PM on May 1, 2011 [5 favorites]

As the Chairperson of Chairs in my sister's wedding (No, I wasn't asked to be a bridesmaid. those positions were filled by the groom's skanky cousins.) I would have loved to have been listed in the credits. I was also Flask Bearer. Turns out everybody on my side loves Maker's Mark.
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 7:03 PM on May 1, 2011

We had a cupbearer for the bride-and-groom vodka drinking that was part of our ceremony. There was also a credits portion of our program (it was actually a "bibliography" because our program was very academic-dorky), which all the participants said they enjoyed. I wish we'd thought of having a Chairperson of Chairs!
posted by redfoxtail at 8:11 PM on May 1, 2011

One sibling and several friends made me MC of their wedding receptions. They think it will keep me off the piss for a couple of hours extra, which is nice.
posted by Trivia Newton John at 1:27 AM on May 2, 2011

I love the idea of adult flower girls. I never got to be a flower girl as a child and I would be thrilled if someone asked me now to be a flower girl!
posted by radioamy at 11:53 AM on May 2, 2011

I don't know if you decided against the traditional roles because you didn't want to play favorites, but a lot of weddings now have "attendants" instead of bridesmaids/groomsmen/best man/maid of honor. I'm not really into the whole traditional roles thing, but as the bride I would probably appreciate having a couple good girlfriends there to help me out during the whole shebang.
posted by radioamy at 11:55 AM on May 2, 2011

Our ceremony was also a short, non-traditional one without any bridesmaids or groomsmen. It did feature us signing the wedding certificate. My best friend and his best friend then each signed it as our witnesses. We liked that for the symbolic value - our closest friends witnessed our vows and then lent their names to the legality of our union.
posted by minervous at 6:49 PM on May 2, 2011

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