Symbolic Wedding Ceremony Planning Guide For A Perfect Day

symbolic ceremony secular wedding woman and man walking downstairs

Struggling to plan a symbolic wedding ceremony? Here’s Clover Jean Weddings planning checklist for each stage of your wedding journey. Whether you have a rustic, industrial, romantic, festival or nautical theme, planning the perfect day can be stressful.

Another thing you need to find a authorised or non-authorised venue to host your symbolic wedding ceremony.  Not to mention decide on your budget for the upcoming event. There’s a lot of stuff to deal with and you might be feeling overwhelmed.

But don’t despair, planning can be a doddle. In fact, you can make it fun, exciting and enjoyable. From trying on the bridal gown, tasting the food samples, choosing the right evening outfits and picking the right blossoms. There’s much in store for you. So, here to get you started is a symbolic wedding ceremony planning guide. Read on.


What do you have to do first before planning your symbolic wedding ceremony?

symbolic wedding ceremony bride with long black hair holding grooms hand

Photo credit: Felicia & James – RJ

Book the wedding venue

First of all, with an explosive demand on wedding venues for summer 2021 and 2022 [in Holland], you need to resume planning now. We are stuck at home, so why not, take advantage of the free time.  Make sure your entourage: wedding planner, hair and make-up specialist and florist is available.

Sort out the the legal paperwork

Secondly, you must give one calendar month official notice to the municipality or town hall that you wish to legally marry. On top of that, you may have to give them your preferred symbolic wedding date too. And inform the council official you would like to a friend to officiate. Or you  designate a temporary celebrant for one day.

Get your official documents checked

Thirdly, as you know, you will need evidence of date and place of birth from official sources (eg. Birth Certificate, Passport). And if this is your second or third marriage, you must provide proof of dissolution from an official source, [divorce papers]. Plus you give free and informed consent to be wed.

Arrange official marriage attendee (optional)

Look I don’t wish to burst your bubble. If you have a family or friend carry out your legal marriage service, know this. An official civil marriage celebrant / registrar from the town hall is present too. And this is to ensure your symbolic marriage is legally binding, in accordance with marriage  law.

Fees – official civil marriage celebrant

Notably authorised marriage council official require a fee to ensure the symbolic ceremony is performed in a dignified fashion. Alongside wedding vows, the signature and witnesses signing of the certificate this legalises your marriage. The costs guarantee that you are married. Thus, your celebrant or friend can deliver the fun part of the nuptials without legal liabilities.

Who do you appoint to officiate your wedding?

A symbolic wedding ceremony script is an informal personal narrative that allows you to share your celebration of love with family and friends. The series of events tells your history in great detail. These prime candidates have the gift, and an edge on the job. So, use these key steps and get planning with your personal officiant now…


Who should you choose as your celebrant / officiant / master of ceremonies for one day?

solid gold wedding ring engraved with the word love

– Photo courtesy: Brano Haduk

A symbolic wedding ceremony is a non-religious blessing service, and takes place before or after your civil marriage ceremony. So, you need to choose someone who echoes your strong personal beliefs, traditions, and future hopes. Let them show others how much you are committed to one another.

In fact, you give them a prepared FREE script / speech to carry out your ceremonial marriage blessing with ease. Imagine guests saying this about your wedding. “Shirley’s Symbolic Wedding Speech:  had us laughing out with tears of joy out of our chairs. She killed it with her calm, confident and always considerate manner.”


symbolic ceremony wedding man making a speech and guests laughing

Andy’s Best Man Speech

Interfaith Minister

Additionally you can endorse your vows in a beautiful church setting. An accredited minister honors your cultural and ethnic backgrounds as an interfaith [marriage] authority.  For more information about crafting a secular marriage and symbolic wedding ceremony to reflect your personal faiths and beliefs.


Furthermore, the celebrancy movement facilitates a certified celebrant to officiate your non-religious marriage ceremony. Creating the right narrative that strikes the right balance between sincerity and humor is a celebrant style wedding. And the relaxed ceremony gives you the ability and  freedom to sign a symbolic contract of marriage.

wedding speech bride making a speech to the groom

Virtual, minimony or symbolic wedding ceremony – which one suits you? Whatever you choose, your officiant for the day will describe your values and recite your love back to you.

image Ryan Polei


Similarly, a humanist wedding is officiated by a celebrant. The person can marry you where you want And when you want and how you want anywhere in the world. Humanists’ celebrants focus on humanism and the loving relationship of two human beings. Another thing, the symbolic blessing incorporates non-religious readings, your favorite music, and  tokens of love.

Marriage Officiant 

And there’s more….a symbolic marriage officiant  mirrors your true feelings for one another. In fact, you compose your own non-religioius and non-binding marriage script. The appointed officiant writes a speech for your big moment. But, if you have no time, energy or money to do that. Use my symbolic wedding ceremony script.

humanist wedding bride and groom walk down aisle as witnesses look on

As a remembrance of the day, create intentional moments of meaning.  Image Ryan G Smith



A master of ceremonies can be your friend or family member. In an informal way they can officiate your wedding without formality. NOTE: NO religious wording may be used (but who is to know?) A bespoke-written speech assist them. It’s unique, beautiful, and personalised. You design it for someone special to carry out your ceremonial marriage blessing.


Another thing, you can get your mum dad or best friend sworn in and authorised to marry you for one day only [Holland]. And the person requires no previous training or experience in creating and officiating your ceremony. Even better, the marriage ceremony can be conducted any time, at any place and anywhere you choose. You reveal what is important to you.

symbolic ceremony secular wedding woman and man walking downstairs

Boda de Juan & Rosa, Almería

main image | Tonymadrid Photography

Symbolic wedding ceremony resources & tools


Over to you…….

Be savvy and create your ideal wedding ceremony! Leave your ideas, questions or comments below.

About Clover Jean: I'm a Londoner based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Being a ceremonial wedding - symbolic marriage officiant with a gospel & soul choir is rewarding work. So, my guilty pleasures are fine dining, travel hot spots and on-line retail therapy. What's yours? Get in touch, via Instagram #cloverjeanamsterdam or Facebook. LIKE, SHARE, SPREAD THE LOVE & see you soon!

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