Your wedding day is a joyous occasion to celebrate with your nearest and dearest friends and family, but you may have a loved one who is sadly no longer here to join in the festivities. Below are some ideas of how you could pay tribute to that special person you have lost, so that you have them celebrate your big day with you in spirit.

Depending on how comfortable you are, you may choose to acknowledge those that are no longer with us publicly or privately. Equally, it may be important to you that they are remembered in a loving way without casting a melancholy mood over your happy wedding day.

Sentimental Accessories

Wearing something of theirs is a discrete way of acknowledging your loved one, and could double up as your ‘something borrowed’. Keep your loved one close to you throughout your special day by accessorising with a piece of their jewellery, or even having a bit of fabric from an item of their clothing sewn onto the inside of your dress (or suit). Or, they may have had a brooch which you could pin to the stems of your bouquet.

Family Heirloom Brooches with Photographs on Bridal Bouquet to Remember Lost Loved One

The Gift of Love

Perhaps this special person gifted you something or you inherited an heirloom which you could use on your wedding day. This could be anything from champagne flutes for the wedding toasts to a small trinket box you could use for the rings during the wedding ceremony.

Light a Candle

Possibly one of the most traditional and symbolic ways of commemorating a special person is by lighting a candle to burn throughout your wedding day. Again, you could do this publicly or privately.

Save a Seat

Reserve a seat during your wedding ceremony for your loved one. You could maybe add a photograph of them or beautiful flowers in their place.

Flowers on Chair

Literary Expression

Have a poem or excerpt from their favourite book which reminds you of them or is personally relevant read during your wedding ceremony.

A Moment of Silence

This is a powerful way to recognised your lost family member or friend during your ceremony, before the wedding proceedings.

Toast in Their Memory

Nowadays it’s not uncommon to raise a glass to that significant loved one during the speeches. You could even toast them with their favourite drink.

Wedding Toast

Play Music

In contrast to having a moment of silence, you may wish to remember your loved one through music. Choose one of their favourite songs for the ceremony, or even the dance floor.

Cultural Tribute

Whether you are religious or not, various cultures may have special traditions to acknowledge those that have passed. For example, the Maori Haka from New Zealand can be very powerful and moving. Or, if this person was in the military, you could have a regimental toast in their honour.


If your loved one had a family recipe of personal sentiment to you, you could include this in your wedding reception meal. There is something magical about a family recipe that gets passed down and shared.

Guest post by Liesl Lamare of Lamare London

Images from…

Bouquet with Brooches: Delicious Photography

Flowers on Chair: Terri Li Photography

Toast: Jonny Barratt Photography