• Petite Weddings

Top 5 reasons to renew your wedding vows (and where to do it!)

What's all the fuss about vow renewals?

It’s said that in Hollywood a vow renewal can often be a sure sign of a failing marriage. For example, Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony did it twice during their marriage…and we all know where that ended! Thankfully most of us don’t live in Hollywood, but in the real world where the rules of Hollywood, good and bad, don’t apply.

For the rest of us mortals, vow renewal was first created in Italy by the Catholic Church where couples who were married in the church are invited to marriage renewal/anniversary Mass to renew their vows. Introduced more broadly in America in the 1970s (and who doesn't love all things 1970s?), it’s now a hot trend with some US wedding planners reporting that over 30% of their bookings are for vow renewals rather than weddings.

So why are vow renewals growing in popularity? Are they just a good excuse for a party? Or is there more to it than that? And most importantly, why do people renew their wedding vows?

Research tells us…

In academic research undertaken in the US by Dawn Braithwaite, entitled, “I Do Again: Renewing Vows” the data collected certainly backs the view that vow renewals are a good indicator of marital happiness and longevity of a relationship, rather than a sticking plaster on an expired one. To quote:

“Based on our data, the vow renewal event appears…far more to maintain than to repair marital bonds. For most… the renewal event was not envisioned as a way to restore the marriage as much as a way to celebrate a marriage that was still viable.

…married couples appear not to renew their vows out of an intention to sustain their marriage…rather, married couples appear to partake in a renewal of their marital vows as an emotionally based expression of their love and commitment. The act of celebration, in turn, may … maintain the relationship’s viability.”

Top 5 reasons for renewing vows

Petite Weddings has seen a 10-fold rise in the number of couples wanting to renew their vows this year. Here’s the top 5 reasons given by couples for renewing vows:

- Celebrating a special anniversary by reaffirming love and commitment to one another

- A ritual to bring to a close a very difficult time and marking the start of a new chapter (maybe this is why Petite Weddings has seen demand rise 10-fold post-lockdown?)

- The couple wanting to experience the wedding day they wished they’d enjoyed when they got married

- Wanting to make new vows to one another as people and relationships change over time and some couples want to keep their heartfelt vows relevant and meaningful

- For some it’s the ultimate surprise for a partner – to have arranged everything for a vow renewal and then inviting them to it

- Some new parents combine a vow renewal with a naming ceremony, welcoming a new member of the family, but also making vows that seem relevant in the light of becoming parents as well as being loving partners

Whatever your reason for renewing your vows, there are so many beautiful and unique options available to couples and, unlike a wedding, so few rules or traditions you have to “abide by”. Whether you want to recreate your wedding day, or create something totally different like a ceremony in enchanting woods, on a quiet beach or in front of a stunning sunset we’d love to help you. Take a look at our "How to Renew Wedding Vows Guide" here.

A great idea for your vow renewal

If you’re looking for an exquisite vow renewal day that combines a little time away from it all for the two of you (and maybe your dogs) then we have a fabulous vow renewal venue idea: The Folly in Devon.

In collaboration with some fabulously talented people, we created this beautiful styled shoot at The Folly that saw Wendy and Andrew (a real couple and the creative masterminds behind @broganbuzec) renew their vows and enjoy a very special day that included: bridal hair and make-up; beautiful floral arrangements; a heartfelt ceremony led by celebrant Sara Price, relaxed photography and videography by Verity Westcott and Sally Johns of Capture Weddings respectively in and around The Folly. Later, Wendy and Andrew enjoyed afternoon tea by Wedding and Events Angel, Carol (also owner of The Folly), a little spin out in Toby the vintage VW Camper to explore the woods for further photography and videography opportunities and, finally, a gentle start to their private evening with a glass of Champagne in the secluded hot tub.

This shoot really shows off how a small, low key vow renewal can punch above its weight in terms of wow factors, enjoyment and decadence. It’s the perfect way to reaffirm your love for one another, particularly as we all still feel the on-going effects of the last 18 months without having to spend life changing sums of money.

And finally...

We hope enjoy looking at these lovely photographs and beautiful video created by this first-class team:

Videography - @capture.weddings

Photography - @veritywestcottphotography

Models: Wendy & Andrew @broganbuzec

Bridal outfit: Stocked by @broganbuzec designed by @onehundredstars

Groom’s outfit: Loaned by @bluebarn.life

On the day coordinator & venue - @thefollydevon

Flowers - @emmahewlettfloraldesign

Celebrant - @sarapricecelebrant

Catering - @wedding_event_angel

Transport – Toby the vintage VW Camper Van - talk to @thefollydevon

Bridal hair - @hairbyashleighbeevers

Bridal make up - @sophiewhitemua

Concept and planning - @petiteweddingsuk

With special thanks to @juliettebythesea

If you feel inspired to renew your vows at The Folly in Devon take a look here.

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