When it comes to planning a wedding there is so much that goes into it; one thing being selecting the vendors that will make up your vendor team. From the venue, caterer, florist, DJ, officiant, photographer, etc.
As a professional wedding officiant; Maria of Carissa Ceremonies wanted to take the time to provide a little insight into what a lot of couples ask her when searching for that perfect wedding officiant. The 'Ask The Expert' column which featured Maria can be found in the recently issued Spring/Summer edition of Herlife Magazine New York.
‘Ask The Expert’
Maria Pelton; Director of Ceremony Services for Carissa Ceremonies - Upstate NY Wedding Officiants answers a few of those all important questions that couples ask when it comes to seeking out the right wedding officiant for their wedding day.
- Why should we hire a professional wedding officiant?
The #1 reason to hire a wedding officiant is experience. We feel that in speaking with couples they may feel that there isn’t much of a difference between asking a friend or family member to perform your wedding ceremony versus hiring a professional, but we’re here to tell you that there’s quite a few differences.
With experience comes ease in being able to deliver a performance that can at times take twists and turns, require on-the-spot thinking and last minute changes.
Professional officiants are familiar with the local laws to ensure that you are in compliance when we send in your marriage license, and are always professional and open when it comes to thoughts on your ceremony; what you may want to include or not (this part may be much more difficult if working with a friend or family member).
Professional wedding officiants are very adept at public speaking; we are storytellers and have the ability to maintain a state of calmness while leading your community of family and friends on a journey through your love story.
- If I work with you what's the process?
We start out scheduling an initial free one-hour consultation; either via zoom or in-person; this gives us the opportunity to get to know you, your background, how you met, how you became engaged, what your visions are for your wedding ceremony. It also provides you with the opportunity to ask any questions that may be on your mind when it comes to the most important part of your wedding day - the ceremony. At the end of your consultation you can contract with us or take a few days to talk it over with your partner. Once you have contracted with us and made your deposit your wedding date is locked in. We are with you from that point forward, and you can reach out at any time with any questions that may surface. As we work through the process of creating your ceremony; as we write all of our ceremonies from scratch, we also assist you with writing your personal vows or selecting vows from an extensive list that we have created. We provide you with a final draft of your ceremony roughly 2 weeks prior to your wedding date; allowing you the opportunity to read through it and provide us with any feedback - anything you may want to change, add etc. We are present at both your rehearsal and wedding; arriving one-hour early to your ceremony to have time to connect with you and your partner; along with the other vendors that make up your team. We are there for continued support, provide calmness to what we find at times can be a very overwhelming day for you, and always have tissues for those moments in your ceremony where you just can’t help but let your emotions flow.
- Do you work with other vendors?
As a professional wedding officiant we’ve worked with many other wedding vendors; wedding planners, florists, DJ's, photographers, caterers, videographers, etc. As professional wedding officiants there is a relationship that we’ve developed with other vendors on the wedding circuit that honestly becomes familial. We get excited when we work with vendors that we have worked with before, but also love the opportunity to work with new vendors and grow our network. It’s important that we are comfortable speaking to all the vendors that make up your vendor team, and connect with them prior to your ceremony to ensure we are all on the same page - we all have a role, and it’s imperative that we’re all on the same page to ensure your ceremony runs smoothly from start to finish.
A professional wedding officiants advice on answering some of those all important questions that couples ask.
Where to start when it comes to writing your vows? Maria provides some helpful tips to think about when starting the process. And just remember...you don't have to be a professional writer!