7 Great Ways to Personalize Your Wedding in 2023

Is there a secret recipe to a memorable wedding? 

Just like all brides, you'll want your guest to remember your wedding day as a super fun, personal, and memorable celebration. 

After photographing hundreds of weddings and thousands of details along the years, I can tell you there are several creative ways to make your wedding experience more personal for you and your guests. 

Customizing your wedding to spice up your celebration with personal details is worth all the effort and planning.

Let's take a look at these 7 ways to personalize your wedding and get inspired:

The Engagement Session that Brings Back Sweet Memories

You met your better half on a night out in the east village. You had your first kiss in Washington Sq Park. He proposed in Central Park. These locations will always have a special place in your heart because they mark significant milestones in your love story. Why not celebrate your engagement in a location that will always make your hearts race a bit.  You can click here to see some of my favorite engagement session locations, but other great spots can be the place you met, your first date, or your favorite hangout spot in the city.  It's one way to make your photos feel a bit more “you”. 

(Another similar idea is choosing a wedding venue that represents a significant relationship milestone for you too!)

Choose Music that Makes Your Heart Sing

Once you’ve said “I do” it’s time to celebrate. If you are not a conventional “Here Comes the Bride” kind of bride, you may look for a processional and recessional song that is meaningful instead of traditional.  Your walk down the aisle as Mr. and Mrs. will be truly memorable if you choose a song you love.  One couple I photographed walked out to the Star Wars soundtrack. Depending on the mood and tone you want to set, choose music that reminds you of your origins, such as bagpipe music, if you have Scottish heritage.  Or relaxing ukulele songs, if you come from Hawaii.  Or a tarantella, if you have Italian roots.  Whatever your pick, make sure it’s a song you have a special connection to.

A Photo Booth that Steals a Smile from Every Guest

Photo booths are often the highlight of any wedding reception.  Everyone, from children to grandparents, will want a cute photo printout for a souvenir. People always enjoy stepping in and getting some fun shots together with their friends and loved ones, especially when they are looking their best. Although I offer both gold and silver backdrops, I've seen couples personalize their STAK-Booth with custom props and even custom designed backdrops (like a flower wall).  With a personalized photo-booth that sparks your guests’ imagination, the photobooth is a place where people will have fun, be themselves, and even get a bit wild!

Food that Makes Everyone’s Mouth Water

Believe it or not, food is something that can make or break a wedding for some guest. 

If it’s bad, people will talk. If, on the other hand, if it’s delicious, people will always remember it.  

Adding your favorite universally-loved food to the menu is your best bet. So, if you literally live for pizza (who doesn’t like that?!), delight your guests with a mouthwatering pizza station. If you come from the South but you are celebrating your wedding elsewhere, bring the South to you and serve fried chicken, mac and cheese and biscuits. You won’t hear a single soul complain about that. Cultural foods like tacos, sushi, pasta or tapas are always a hit and the options are endless.

 As for sweets, apart from serving the must-have wedding cake, invite your guests to stroll over to an ice cream cart. I promise they will form a line in no time. 

Custom Clothing that Catches the Eye

Incorporating fun and quirky custom made items into your wedding outfit will make everyone smile, plus it will look great in photos. One bride I recently photographed wore a pair of Wonder Woman inspired heels.  You can choose anything from an edgy leather jacket printed with your new name to a wedding gown in your favorite color (so what, everyone knows you’ve always loved red!!). 

Grooms can go all out with something like shoes in an electric hue, a checkered bow tie, or custom socks with their favorite superhero. You can basically wear whatever you like as long as it’s YOU.  Even a simple switch from a black to midnight blue Tuxedo may be all you need to customize your outfit.  

The First Dance that Wows Every Guest

This is the moment when all eyes are on you, so make the most of it. Do you want to surprise your guests with a choreographed dance? Then get on that dance floor with your better half and bust out your best moves unapologetically. Classical couples may choose a ballet performance for their first dance, while couples who already have kids, might want to include the son or daughter in the first dance.

If you want to break with tradition, create your own special dance that represents you as a couple. Attention-grabbing choreography can transform this moment from simple to simply unforgettable.

The Beloved Pet You Can’t Celebrate Without

Throughout the years I have photographed a few couples with their pets and I know how much having those sweet little faces in the photos meant to them. Sometimes your wedding venue might restrict pets from walking down the aisle, in which case you can think of other cool things to include your furry friends without them being present on the day. You can print their photo on paper goods or on the signage you will be using, or simply name a cocktail after them. If your pet can take part in the ceremony, get him or her a little party outfit, or wrap some flowers (that match your bouquet) around the collar and let them greet guests at the entrance or even walk down the aisle with you. 

I love when couples infuse their big day with personal touches because it makes the wedding even more special for you and your guests.  Your big day should be a reflection of who you really are, so try to share all your favorite things with your favorite people. And let your adventure begin…