Your Guide To: Ceremony Processional Order
The bride's entrance is always a highlight of the wedding ceremony. It's the first time everyone see's her wedding gown and it may be the first time the groom see's his bride. The bride is always the last person to walk down the aisle, and their is a particular order for the processional of the ceremony. Let's walk you though that order!
What is the Wedding Processional?
Definition: The wedding processional refers to the group of people walking down the aisle in a specific order during the start of wedding ceremony. The processional often involves a permutation of (the VIP's) which includes the officiant, parents, the groom, mother of the bride, wedding party, ring bearer(s)/flower girl(s) and the bride with her father.
The VIP's in the wedding will all be photographed as they walk the aisle before the bride makes her grand entrance. Different types of weddings employ different processional orders, in this Blog we are covering the includes includes traditional and most common order (Jewish, Hindu, and Catholic processionals are ran differently). We're breaking down who should walk when to familiarize yourself with the different possibilities and to ensure your rehearsal and wedding day runs as smoothly as possible!
Traditional Christian Wedding Processional Order
The Officiant: The officiant's entrance signals that the processional is about to begin.
Once he/she makes her way to the alter, they may make an announcement to let wedding guests know the ceremony has begun and to please be seated. The officiant may also be pre-standing at the alter and make his announcement as the ceremony is about to begin.
The Groom's Parents: The grooms parents are the first to enter. Once they reach the end of the aisle, they take their seats to the right of the aisle in the first row.
The Bride's Mother: The mother of the bride follows the grooms parents, she may have an escort (typically brother or uncle of the bride) Once they reach the end of the aisle, she will take her seat to the left of the aisle in the first row.
The Groom: After the mother of the bride has taken her seat, the groom will traditionally walk into the ceremony. However, many couples may choose to have the groom's parents escort them down the aisle.
Bridal Party: The groomsmen and bridesmaids may walk in together as pairs or separately. The bridesmaid and groomsman that walks first will be the ones furthest out from the alter following in order, the ladies are always on the left and gentlemen are on the right. The Best Man and Maid or Matron of Honor will be that last in the bridal party to walk the aisle.
The Flower Girl(s) and Ring Bearer(s): The ring bearer and flower girl pave the way for the bride. Traditionally, the ring bearer will carry the wedding rings (though we typically give the ring bearer fake rings from our emergency kit, as they may be too little to be trusted with the real expensive rings), tied to a small pillow. The flower girl(s) will carry a basket of petals to scatter as she walks down the aisle (we typically have either mom/dad of the ring bearer/flower girl placed at an aisle seat so they can encourage their little one down the aisle if needed.
Have fun with the flower girl/ring bearer accessories and attire. We have seen some unique ideas from ring security briefcase's, fairy girls with magic wands and crowns to a motorized car. Creative ideas always "aww"the wedding guests as the children make their way down the aisle! Plus the little ones LOVE the attention (well, most of the time)!
The Father of the Bride and the Bride: The bride's father traditionally escorts his daughter down the aisle, with the bride on the left arm. After they make their way down the aisle, the officiant will guide the father of the bride through the "giving away" portion and place his daughters right hand into the groom's left and then take his seat beside the bride's mother.