For brides- and grooms-to-be who are parents, there are no guests more special than their sons and/or daughters. The wedding represents a huge milestone for them, too, as it solidifies you as a family, and in many cases signifies your commitment to their parent or step-parent. Many parents rightfully want to honor their children in the ceremony and show their friends and family the love that they all share. Depending on the age of your children, there are a number of different roles they can take on during the service. Consider asking them to participate in the ceremony as a flower girl, ring bearer, bridesmaid, or groomsman, and even say a few vows at the altar. You could also entrust them with a special job, like walking the family dog down the aisle or taking photos.
However they are featured in the wedding, your kids will love being honored and recognized in front of family and loved ones. Discover some creative, fun ways for kids to be a part of the the festivities, below!
Pulled in a Wagon
Well, this is just adorable. Babies and toddlers who are too young to walk down the aisle by themselves can be pulled in a beautifully decorated wagon by a bridesmaid or groomsman. Be sure to practice beforehand so they know what to expect! Photo by Christian Oth Studios
Holding a Sign
We've seen this trend take off in the last few years. Have your kids announce your arrival with a sign that says, "Here comes the bride!" This is a great alternative if you already have a few flower girls and ring bearers, or if you're not sure your kids can handle the pressure of scattering petals or carrying the rings! Photo by Jay Lawrence Goldman Photography; Floral design by Empty Vase
Flower Girl or Ring Bearer
This is the perfect role for kids aged about four to 12. They'll love getting to walk down the aisle and complete an important task, and your guests will love getting to see them dressed up in their finest, too! Littler kids can sit down in the first row once they reach the altar, while bigger kids can stand up at the altar with you and the rest of the wedding party. Photo by Ira Lippke Studios; Consulting by Mindy Weiss Party Consultants; Rentals by Revelry Event Designers
Walking the Dog
This is a role your kids are guaranteed to love. After all, every kid loves to show off their adorable dog! First, make sure your child is extremely comfortable and confident walking the dog. Remember, dogs can get excited and may be more difficult to handle in front of crowds, so be very thoughtful as to who is entrusted with this responsibility. It's also a good idea to have an adult on-call who can step in and help if the dog becomes unruly. Photo by Marisa Holmes
Bridesmaid or Groomsman
Teenagers and adult children will appreciate being included in the ceremony as members of the wedding party. You may even decide to honor them as best man or maid of honor, which has the added bonus of being able to stand next to each other during the vow exchange. Many couples holding small weddings choose to include their children as the only bridesmaids and groomsmen, with no other friends or family members in the wedding party. This is a sweet way to keep the ceremony intimate and make your kids feel like they're part of the marriage, too. Photo by Marc Royce Photography
Designate your kids as "junior photographers" and let them document the big day. Disposable cameras are easy for little hands, while bigger kids can take snaps using smartphones. Teenagers and adult children can even take photos with a DSLR or point-and-shoot digital camera. The result? You'll be able to experience your wedding through your childrens' eyes. Photo by Jasmine Star Photography
For blended families, the wedding is an opportunity to honor not only your marriage, but also the joining of two families and your committment to each other's children. Bring the kids up to the altar and have your officiant give you all a few vows to recite. It doesn't have to be all serious – you can promise to always take your stepdaughter shopping, and she can promise to love you even when you're embarrassing her in front of her friends. By including your kids in the vows, you'll transform your wedding into a celebration of family and the love you have for each other. Photo by Samuel Lippke Studios
Opening photo by Handeland Tesoro Photography