If you follow me on Facebook — if not, you should ; ) — you may have seen me transform my kitchen into a full-scale wedding program print shop for these past few weeks. And let me just say, wedding programs were by far one of my most tedious DIY projects!
From determining what information to put inside, to designing them, to printing and assembling all 150, this was definitely the most time-consuming project I completed for the wedding. But all in all, I’m happy with the end result.
Doing your own programs is an easy way to cut out some costs. But if you’re planning to do this, you need to know what to put inside. Of course, your wedding should be unique to you and your beau, but there are a few key items you need to include to guide your guests through the ceremony:
- Cover Page
- The Bridal Party
- Order of the Ceremony
- Thank You Notes
- A List Honoring the Deceased
But of course, I’ll delve a little deeper and use my own ceremony program as an example…
Cover Page: This generally has the bride & groom’s names, the date of the wedding and the city/state in which it’s taking place. If you have a wedding monogram, the cover is a really great place to put it. (Don’t forget that tomorrow is the last day to enter to win a custom monogram decal from Ten23 Designs!)
Page 1: The Bridal Party – This page tells your guests who will be walking down the aisle and how you’re related to them. Here’s the order I did mine in…
- Parents of the Bride
- Parents of the Groom
- Maid of Honor – Also include relation. For instance, my MOH is a friend, so next to her name says “Friend of the Bride”.
- Best Man – Include relation.
- Bridesmaids – Again, include relation next to each bridesmaid’s name.
- Groomsmen – Same thing.
- Flower Girl
- Ring Bearer
- Grandparents of the Bride — Here, I put only living grandparents that would be walking down the aisle. There’s an “In Memory” page later in my program to honor the deceased.
- Grandparents of the Groom — Same thing.
Page 2: Ceremony – This is where you guide your guests through the events of the ceremony. If there is music at any point, it’s good to include the song title as well. The same goes for readings. Here is the order of events in my program:
- Special Seating
- Bridal Processional
- Welcome and Opening Remarks
- Presentation of the Bride
- Words on Love and Marriage
- Vows and Exchange of Rings
- Wine and Love Letter Box Ritual
- Presentation of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Denton
Inside Back Cover: Thanks & Memories — This can be 2 pages or one, depending on the length. In our program, this is the inside back cover and includes little thank you notes to our guests, attendants and parents, followed by a list of those that “We Lovingly Remember”. I’ve also seen people include their new address together on this last page, but since Michael and I are not moving, we didn’t do this.
But of course, your ceremony program doesn’t need to follow the same format as mine. This is just meant to be a guide, because figuring out all this stuff can be hard!
Next week, I’ll share the full DIY project and explain how I assembled my programs. Stay tuned!
About Nicole Denton
With a love of planning just about anything — from her own wedding, to bridal and baby showers, to dinner parties, and more – Nicole is the Plunge Project’s founder and editor-in-chief. A New Jersey native, Nicole has called Chandler, Arizona home since 2013, where she currently lives with her husband Michael; two pit bulls, Shelby and Link; and cat, Kity Perry. A University of Tennessee graduate, Nicole has a bachelors in communications and a career at a rapidly-growing digital marketing firm.