What to look for and how to choose a Celebrant, and tips to write beautiful vows



When couples commence planning their wedding, they generally have an idea about the look or feel that they want for their wedding day; the venue or general location they are considering; sometimes even the photographer. However, it is rare that they know which Celebrant they want to use.


Role of a Celebrant

A Celebrant’s role is to make everything legal. They are the person that will address you and your guests and guide you through making your commitment and vows to your special someone. They are the glue of your ceremony and can really make or break this intimate and personal moment. So it is strange that couples generally do not have that same vision in mind for someone to fill this role.





Lesley's Celebrant Journey

- How -

Part of the Iconic Weddings team, Lesley from WA Wedding Celebrant, became a Commonwealth Registered Marriage Celebrant in 2008. She explained that anyone can be a Civil Celebrant and do funerals, baby namings and renewal of vows, but to be a Marriage Celebrant you have to be appointed by the Attorney-General’s Department. To me, this is an acknowledgement of the sanctity marriage and the legal commitment that couples make to their chosen one, making a wedding incredibly special and important.


- Why -

And for Lesley this was very much why she became a Marriage Celebrant. She values ceremony and rituals in our lives and sees the importance of what they symbolise.

She states that her most favourite thing about being a Marriage Celebrant is that she is able to meet so many wonderful, happy couples at one of the best stages of their life! Couples who are living the life they want and getting married means they can formalise their friendship, love and now marriage with family and friends. How special is that? She believes it is important to celebrate a couple’s uniqueness and considers it her responsibility to help guide couples through their ceremony so that it flows effortlessly. Her aim is to create an excitement around their day and celebrate their commitment to one another, all delivered with personalised and exceptional service. This only comes from a number of meetings, experience and many, many hours of paperwork in order to deliver a ceremony that reflects who the couple are, what is important to them and what their love is about.





Traits of a Good Marriage Celebrant

Like any aspect of a wedding, there are so many celebrants out there with different personalities, skills and styles. So what makes a good Marriage Celebrant and how on earth do you select the right one for your ceremony?


Lesley believes that the key to being an excellent Marriage Celebrant is about having a raft of skills to be able to effectively work with people from many ‘walks of life’.


It is imperative that a Marriage Celebrant is organised in order to conduct and complete all the legal requirements of a marriage. Additionally, it is so important that a Marriage Celebrant is a good listener, ensuring that they are willing to listen to what couples are saying. Listening is the first step in understanding who the couple are so that the celebrant can capture their style and feeling in a legal ceremony.


How To Choose Your Marriage Celebrant

So finding a great Marriage Celebrant is a tricky task, as many of these important skills are not easy to gauge through a website, Facebook or Instagram post!


Lesley’s suggestion is to meet with the celebrant before you commit to using the celebrant’s services.


Meeting with a handful of celebrants that you have witnessed at another wedding, that have been recommended to you or that you have seen regularly pop up, allows you to find the right fit for you. Connection and communication is so very important for a couple to trust the chosen celebrant with their wedding ceremony and a face-to-face meeting allows you to understand if this is evident. A meeting is also an easy opportunity to check the Celebrant’s registration (to be registered, all Marriage Celebrants must complete their annual Ongoing Professional Development, meaning they are up-to-date with the latest paperwork, legalities and skills).





Tips On Writing Your Vows

Another aspect of the ceremony that generally causes confusion and concern for couples is the writing of vows. For some couples, where to start and what to write is very overwhelming. So what is Lesley’s advice?


She always tells her couples to be themselves and let it come through their words.


They don’t have to re-invent the wheel, but it must be meaningful to each other. Reaffirm what you now know and love about each other and why you promise to publicly commit to your union that is already in your heart.

Lesley understands that this is a difficult component for many couples so she is always available to assist if they are needing a little help to find the words.



For Lesley, she learns something new from every couple and in every ceremony. So she is always happy to share her experience and knowledge with couples to assist in making their wedding ceremony a truly memorable occasion.

In gathering an understanding of what a Marriage Celebrant does and the extensive skills they need to perform their role, it is quite surprising that so often they are the forgotten vendor of a wedding when their role and skills are so very essential to the core of what a wedding day is about.





Images from Iconic Wedding day events captured by THE DAY Weddings.

Black and white image above by Lucking Photography.

Thank you to Lesley for supplying her portrait picture.