Planning  Civil Partnership Ceremony?

Important Tips for Same-Sex Couples

Celebrations require a lot of preparation and sometimes same-sex ceremonies require a bit more. There are some things you will want to take into consideration when planning your civil partnership ceremony that you hadn’t thought of before. But before you start all your planning, take a look at these great tips…

Forget Traditions

When planning your ceremony, forget what you may think “weddings” should look like. When it comes to your big day, do it your way. You can both walk down the aisle together, or do it one by one. With the right venue set up, you can also walk down separate aisles simultaneously, joining one another at the front. You don’t even have to have an alter – you can both be there ready to go from the beginning.

When it comes to attendants, don’t think for a moment that there’s one right way! Whether you have an odd number of attendants, a best woman or a man of honour, or keep your party gender-free, your party should be made up of the people you most want standing there besides you when you say your “I do”s. Some couples choose to not have a bridal party at all. Its really up to you!

Have the Right People By Your Side

When you and your partner are planning your guest list, you want to be sure to invite only people you really want at your big day. First and foremost, invite those who are most important to you. You may feel pressured to include distant family or friends of your parents but you can decide who is on your guest list.

When creating your guest list, keep in mind your budget. The more guests attending, the pricier the celebration. If you want to keep your guest list small but budget is not an issue, you may also consider a destination celebration, however keep in mind that this may prohibit some of the guests you do want there from attending.

 Find LGBTQI-Friendly Venues and Vendors

When searching for your perfect wedding venue, I recommend making it clear from the get-go that you are having a same-sex ceremony. Disclosing this information right away will make it so that you don’t waste your time trying to coordinate with anyone who is not for marriage equality. If you have specific vendors you are interested in, approach them first. If you are starting with a blank slate, perhaps do research on some of the most loved LGBTQ-friendly vendors in your area and definitely check out my friends here on my site.

What To Wear

When it comes to what to wear for your same-sex ceremony, there are no rules. Whether you are on the hunt for two wedding dresses or none, the most important thing is for you to feel comfortable and beautiful on your big day. Some couples like to coordinate their attire even if they don’t see the other’s before the wedding. This could mean coordinating ties, dress styles, colour schemes or lengths. Like all couples, you will want to start shopping early. This is especially true for woman who opt out of wearing a dress because sometimes the perfect outfit can be hard to find in stores.

Hens nights and buck’s parties

Hens and bucks and wedding showers are hetero traditions – but they are also a bucket load of fun!  In my experience, same-sex couples who are more settled tend not to have these parties, while couples that are starting out (and of typical marrying age) often do. Do whatever suits you regardless of the heteronormative traditions.

When to Plan Your Celebration

There are several factors that may help determine when in the year to have your event. Your guest count, location and your budget play huge roles in this decision. While off-season venues tend to save a lot of money, it can also make it more difficult for all of your guests to attend. Of course, there is also the option of planning your wedding around your favourite season.


The most important thing when planning your wedding is that it’s you. Don’t worry about any traditions. Enjoy having your closest friends and family beside you as you share this very special day with your beloved.

vanderRiet Oosthuizen Hannes Uys Photography



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