When it comes to officiating ceremonies, you need to dress the part! Aside from looking the part, you need to play the part and for that, you’ll need a Celebrant suitcase packed with must-have items! We polled our Academy of Modern Celebrancy graduates and members of The Celebrant Directory to find out what they cannot create a ceremony without. Here’s their unanimous top 10 items:
Canva is an amazing tool for when you’re getting started and what’s more, it’s free! You can design business cards, social media graphics and add your branding to a variety of templates. It’s 100% worth having a graphic designer create a suite of brand guidelines and a clear brand for your business for you first and then use Canva to develop your questionnaires, booking forms, certificates, business cards and more.
2. Folder or Tablet
When you officiate ceremonies, you will need to decide the device in which you will be presenting the script. A lot of Celebrants prefer to use a folder with paper copies of the script. You will of course need a printer or to use an online service to gain these print-outs prior to the day which is an extra cost. There are companies such as Undercover UK and Menushop who can create a beautiful personalised folder with your branding on.
Some Celebrants use a tablet such as a Kindle or iPad which is more eco-friendly but ultimately not a fail-proof option. There are things that can go wrong with using a tablet and so you might need a paper back-up on standby. Photographers may also comment about the light reflection from using a tablet and the effect on photos.
You might also want to consider a portable music stand or something similar to hold your folder or tablet on if you need to be hands free for any rituals you might need to conduct.
3. Wet weather gear
Depending on where you are in the world, it’s always handy to keep a pair of wellies and an umbrella in your car for outdoor ceremonies or walking to the ceremony space. The last thing the couple or families will want to see is a drenched Celebrant delivering their ceremony, so make sure you keep up appearances. This being said, don’t sacrifice your favourite pair of shoes to look the part, wellies are a perfectly acceptable choice of footwear for muddy outdoor ceremonies!
4. Emergency kit box
Having an emergency kit box is worth its weight in gold! Many Celebrants keep a container or basket filled with a first aid kit, sewing kit, cable ties, plain biscuits, shoe shine, hair clips, tissues (for the groom), mask, hand gel, paper weight, spare pens, water, spare pair of reading glasses, baby wipes, hairbrush… and so on! The list is almost endless, but having these items will be an incredible help to couples and families.
5. PA system or Mic
It’s always worth checking with the couple or the venue before whether or not they have a PA system or wireless mic system for you to use on the day. Most Celebrants supply their own however, some couples or families might not wish for you to deliver with one.
6. Celebrant stand-in
It’s fantastic to be the one and only for a ceremony, however we must not forget that sometimes life does get in the way and for that it’s a good idea to link up with one or several local Celebrants. There are many reasons why sometimes you may not get to officiate a ceremony. This could be due to traffic or a road accident, illness, family commitments, personal reasons and so on. Couples and families will really value you for having a stand-in support network and you’ll feel more at ease. The Celebrant Directory is a great way to link up with other local Celebrants in the membership Facebook group.
7. A website
A website is an essential feature and the home of your brand. It’s a window to the world whereby couples and families can gage your personality, and also where suppliers can go to to recommend you. All of your social media channels and listings should link into your website. If you’re looking for a web designer, our very own Jennifer Claire is the girl to call!
8. A certificate
Two types to be precise! One is to be a certified Celebrant, this is where can help at The Academy of Modern Celebrancy! Any one can say they are a Celebrant, however having the training and backing of an accredited course behind you will not only install the confidence in yourself, but the families and couples you’ll be working with.
Secondly, if you’re offering certificates as part of your ceremonies for weddings and namings, you’ll need to ensure you take these with you on the day. Keeping spares in your Celebrant suitcase is highly recommended!
9. Hot weather gear
For heatwaves and warmer climates, delivering a ceremony can be challenging even in a short window. Ensure you have a fan, plenty of water, cooling spray, snacks and even a portable fan wouldn’t go amiss. If you’re in a mountainous area, it’s a good idea to pack a pair of hiking boots to get you – we’ve all seen Mama Mia, you can’t rely on the donkeys!
10. Your emotions
Emotions run high across the wedding industry and funeral profession. There will be times that you’ll be beaming from ear to ear, and others where you might struggle to hold back on your emotions. We work with all different people and no family or couple are the same. Students on our academy courses often worry about holding back their emotions but we’re all human and there’s no need.
Think you’d make a great Celebrant? Have a go at our mini quiz and enrol in your dream Celebrant course on The Academy of Modern Celebrancy today!
about the author
Hi, I'm Jennifer, the Founder of the AMC and a massive lover of all things celebration! Are you interested in embarking on a career as a celebrant? Take the Quiz to find out if you have what it takes!
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