A recent trend in wedding ceremonies is to incorporate a wine box and love letter ceremony. In the wedding blogging world, it’s rather popular and is actually being seen now as *gasp* OVERDONE. But in our area of the United States it seems to be rather new or even unheard of.
Here’s How it Works:
You and your spouse-to-be write a love letter that you do not share. We wrote about what made us fall in love with the other person, how we have grown since we’ve met, and what our hopes and dreams are for the future. You seal your letter in an envelope and at some point, give it to your officiant. During the actual wedding ceremony, our officiant said something like this:
“Erin and Jeff have chosen to perform a Love Letter & Wine Box ceremony. For those of you who have never seen this before, this box contains a bottle of wine and a love letter from each to the other. The letters describe the good qualities they find in one another, the reasons they fell in love, and their hopes for their future together. The letters are sealed in individual envelopes and they have not seen what the other has written. Should Erin and Jeff ever find their marriage facing hardships, they will open this box, sit and drink the wine together, then read the letters they wrote to one another to be reminded of the reasons why they are together. The hope is, however, that Erin and Jeff will never have a reason to open this box. And if this is the case, they are to open this box to share and enjoy on their 5th year wedding anniversary, replenish and open on their 10th anniversary, and so on.” (Some of this script borrowed from here. )
At this point, some brides and grooms actually nail the wine box shut as a symbol that you will not need to open it for many years.. In our case, we simply placed our letters into the box and closed the clasp! We did this as well as the lighting of the unity candle while Jeff’s talented brothers performed an acoustic Keith Urban song.
Now, onto the logistics….
We are the “What’s Cheapest?” wine drinkers in our household. But there is one thing I do know even though I’m no wine aficionado: cheap wines are not meant to age – they’re meant to be consumed soon. Which is why we buy the “What’s Cheapest?” brand.
Of course this is our wedding and marriage we’re talking about here, so we needed to splurge a little. I began some research on what wines are best for aging, and came across some recommendations and hesitated over the “Buy Now” button on a few websites. Instead, we went to Happy Harry’s and found that on some wines there is a handy description card that often includes how long it can be aged. I found a wine that would age through 7 years (because the ones with longer age ranges were more expensive!). We spent about $35 for this Feasting Wine:
Honestly, I have no idea what this will taste like, now or in 5 years. I guess we’ll see, and will know when we replenish our wine box on our anniversary what NOT to buy if it turns out bad.
The Wine Box
You could build your own wine box if you are handy with woodworking:
But we purchased a wine box from Hobby Lobby (found it in the basket area). It was originally $19.99 but with a 40% off coupon, it cost around $12. I had some Martha Stewart stencils that I used for our seating sign:
I traced the letters “LOVE” onto the front of the box. I thought about using paint to fill in the letters, but worried that it may scratch off easily. So I grabbed a permanent marker and simply colored them in. (PS. Wine is supposed to be stored on its side, and since we’re storing this for 5 years, it will sit on its side, not upright as the box is actually designed to do.)
We did the wine box ceremony as well as the unity candle tradition — although it was windy and cold so our unity candle didn’t work anyway!
I hope one day to find a prettier place to display our wine box, but right now it sits on a shelf with the photo book my sister made for us as well as our marriage certificate holder.