How to Make Your Rehearsal Dinner as Special as Your Wedding

Use our suggestions to add personal touches to your rehearsal dinner.

How to Make Your Rehearsal Dinner as Special as Your Wedding

Photo: John Russo

personalized rehearsal dinner

As busy as you’ve been planning the big day, it’s important to not forget about the big night before. The day before your wedding can be a stressful time, with wrangling the bridal party, family members, and out-of-town guests. After your rehearsal, why sit down for a formal dinner when you can get the fun started ahead of time? In an era where weddings are becoming more about representing the couple than conforming to tradition, you can get ahead of the trend by creating a perfectly personalized rehearsal dinner for your closest friends and family.

Just as there is no one way get married, there’s no one way to celebrate after your wedding rehearsal. Here are some tips on how to make more out of the night before:

• If the wedding itself is largely geared to your taste and style, the rehearsal dinner can be a nice opportunity to let the vision of your future spouse win out. 

• Use the food to reveal your origins. Everything from entrée to appetizer can represent your regional upbringing or national heritage. 

• Be inspired by your wedding location. For a yacht wedding or a celebration on the bay, feel free to lean into nautical décor more than you would for your reception.

• If the flowers for your nuptials showcase the traditional ivory hue, use the rehearsal dinner as an excuse to utilize more colorful and playful blooms.

• Steer away from choosing a theme too similar to your wedding, but avoid clashing. If your ceremony and reception will take place in an open field, consider an on-site restaurant at a vineyard for the location of your rehearsal dinner.

• Are there any readings, songs, or even games that you wanted to feature at your ceremony and reception but couldn’t figure out a way to fit in? Make the post-rehearsal time more than just dinner and add these touches.

• You can sidestep away from an embarrassing slideshow by displaying carefully curated photos of you and your sweetheart around the venue.  

Find more inspiration by viewing these real rehearsal dinners and browsing images in our rehearsal dinner photo galleries!

Opening photo by Justine Ungaro