How to Include Your Mother in Your Wedding Day

From bridezillas to overbearing mothers and monstrous mother-in-laws, there are plenty of insidious clichés about women and wedding planning

And let's not forget that a wedding was once seen as an exchange of property.  The daughter handed over from father to husband for a fee; the woman was the transaction and the mother a witness to it. 


While modern weddings might be more or less equal, often it's the mothers that have to watch from the sidelines.    

It's the father who leads his daughter down the aisle, who sings her praises during the speeches. He's the one who gets to dance with her. 

And mothers? They get to buy a hat and (if they're lucky) act as a witness on a certificate that their name and occupation won't even be listed on. 

Surely, we can do better.  

And this is where same-sex marriage makes tradition ripe for reinvention.

How to Include Your Mother in Your Wedding Day

  • Spend quality time with your mum away from seating charts and clothes fittings.

With all the planning going on, it’s important to protect quality time with friends and family, and it’s no different with your mum. Take her out for lunch, have a night at the theatre, an afternoon at a spa or invite her round for a coffee and a chat.  A wedding is a big deal for a parent and this will give you both time to savor the run-up to the day without the stress of shopping, planning or crafting for it. 

  • Walk down the aisle with your mother, or walk down it with both your mother and father.

Traditionally a bride is ‘given away’ by her father, but what happens when two men are getting married?  We’ve seen same-sex weddings where the couple walk down the aisle with both parents. 

If it’s taken two people to raise you, then it’s a lovely way to honour both of them.  And if you were brought up by a single mum, then isn't this the perfect time to say thank you with her arm in yours?

And who says mother figures have to be biological? If there’s been a special auntie or grandmother or friend in your life, then walk with them, too.

  • Get mum on the dance floor

A father-daughter or father-son dance is lovely and all that, but it’s a shame to keep mum at arm’s length.  What about a mother-daughter or mother-son dance, too?

  • Something borrowed something blue, something old and something new. 

We’ve seen a big trend towards vintage in recent years, and if your parents were happily married, then it’s a lovely touch to incorporate something of their day into yours.

Of course, we’re not suggesting that you pull out the meringue wedding dress and put that on but taking some lacework from mum’s dress for a veil or, for the gentlemen, a handkerchief or some of the material added to the corsage would look fab.

  • Give mum an important job

This could be acting as a witness for the marriage, but that’s not terribly exciting, so you could give mum a speaking role. Maybe there’s a poem or reading that you love, or give mum a chance to say a few words at the reception.

If mum’s a bit stage shy, then encourage your partner or father to reference her in their own speech.  Be sure to acknowledge a close relationship with your mum or cite her as an inspiration and guiding force in the marriage.

Being a mum can be a thankless task, so however you do it, or whenever you do it, make sure she’s got a place in your big day. 

How did you include your mum on your wedding day? We'd love you to let us know!

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