A sequel wedding is a large celebration, blessing or ceremony which follows a smaller more intimate wedding ceremony.
Wedding Celebrants have been promoting the concept for some time.
Sequel weddings are becoming an increasingly popular trend and one which is gaining momentum fast. This is because of the postponements and the disruption of so many weddings caused by COVID-19.
Why have a sequel wedding?
There are a number of reasons why a sequel wedding might suit you.
- Your wedding has had to be postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic.
- If you are getting married for a second time and want the most basic ceremony that the registration offices offer. Then have a much bigger celebration with all your friends at a later date.
- It might be to fulfil visa requirements that you have the legal ceremony so that you comply with the visa regulations and then have a gathering with family and friends at a later date.
- When planning a destination wedding sometimes the legal side needs to be carried out in the UK first.
- You may have decided to go abroad for the legal aspect of your destination wedding but want to celebrate your marriage in the UK with your family and friends.
There are a few options for the smaller ceremony. Some are practical. Some are more intimate. The choice is yours.
Registrar ‘basic’ ‘no frills’ 2+2 civil ceremony or even a Minimony
This a short ceremony that includes the legal elements needed to perform a marriage. The only people to attend will be yourselves, your two witnesses and the registrars.
It is the cheapest and shortest option available. It only includes a declaration, contracting words and an optional ring vow, chosen from a short standard selection.
Micro, mini or zoom online wedding
These types of wedding are small with no more than about 50 guests attending. These will be particularly popular once the lockdown is lifted when everyone will be dying to spend time together. There will be plenty to celebrate.
A registrar will need to attend to make the marriage legally binding.
Traditionally this is when a couple and their witnesses marry in secret and again to make it legally binding a Registrar must attend. The sequel wedding is the larger party after the event. It could be an opportunity to surprise your guests with the announcement that you have married or warn them in advance and then celebrate altogether.
There are some great wedding venues that specialise in elopements.
Who has a sequel wedding
The sequel wedding is not a new concept. Some cultures have multiple ceremonies that continue over many days and are rooted in tradition.
Needless to say many celebrities have cottoned on that one day simply isn’t enough and many have elaborate wedding celebrations lasting several days! Who can forget the wonderful George Clooney finally tying the knot.
Apparently he and Amal were married in Venice’s city hall following a high profile wedding ceremony two days earlier. They then had a further wedding reception in the UK. More serial than sequel wedding!!
It just goes to show it really doesn’t matter what order you choose for your sequel wedding.
The sequel wedding idea has also grown in popularity in the UK for us mere mortals too. Couples are opting to have a multi-day celebration and create a ‘house party’ long weekend atmosphere.
There are now many large country house venues offering amazing facilities to accommodate large groups of families and friends.
Sequel weddings are also ideally suited for festival style weddings when friends and family come together for a more informal fun filled weekend of camping and celebration.
These venues are often unlicensed but if the legalities have been completed a wedding celebrant would be ideally suited to present a ceremony. The marriage can then be celebrated in an intimate and personalised style.
A sequel wedding is well suited for a second marriage. As a first time bride your dreams and expectations are heightened and indeed so are those of everyone around you.
That quest to be different, better, even bigger than the last wedding you attended creates huge pressure. There is also the small question of trying to please absolutely everybody which is never possible.
With a sequel wedding you can keep it simple, very special, relaxed and most importantly personal and surround yourself with only those who you want to be there. Some second time brides prefer to have their wedding this way.
The advantages of a sequel wedding ceremony
Due to the coronavirus restrictions more and more couples are opting for the basic legal ceremony which then enables them to freely plan their ‘sequel ceremony’ at a venue of their choosing.
Modern couples generally want to shake things up a bit. Although many want the familiar traditional format they also want to break with some of the traditions and put their stamp on their big day.
Personalisation has become a consistent trend especially amongst millennials. Sequel wedding ceremonies enable that personalisation. With no legal restrictions your wedding ceremony can be tailor made and crafted to reflect your values and beliefs.
Whatever style you are after whether its high end and luxury or more relaxed festival and boho. Its your day and you can have it any way you want. But be sure to enlist the services of a wedding celebrant whose style aligns with your own and they will create a ceremony that reflects your vision.
To sum up
A sequel wedding is a 2 stage wedding. The first part is normally the legal bit followed by ‘the sequel wedding’ at a later date. In these uncertain times there is a good reason why couples are choosing to go down this route.
You have the minimony or basic ceremony to legalise it and then continue to plan and bring your original wedding vision to life.
Weddings are celebratory occasions. You should be surrounded by those you love and who have participated throughout your life. Sequel weddings make it possible. You can have the wedding you dreamed of and even better you can celebrate twice!