Best ways to remember lost loved ones at your wedding

Weddings can be a difficult time if you've lost a loved one, but it's a great occasion to honour their memory. Check out our suggestions for the best way to remember friends and family who can't be there

Honouring friends and family who have passed away can be a meaningful and beautiful part of your wedding, whether you choose to have a public tribute for all your guests to see or a private one for only your partner and yourself (or a bit of both).


Whichever way you choose, you should consider the emotional impact it may have on you as well as on your guests, especially if you’re still coming to terms with your loss.

We’ve rounded up some heartfelt ways to remember those who you wish could be with you on the special day.

Image | Light & Lace Photography

Donate to a charity in their memory

If your loved one passed away from a disease or was a strong supporter of a particular cause, instead of having a gift registry, donate money to a charity in their honour. You can let your guests know of your intention by adding a heart-warming poem in your invitation cards.

Alternatively, many charities, including Cancer Research, have pins that you can use as favours.

Wear something that reminds you of them

This is a personal way to remember your loved one, and can work as your something old too. You could wear a pair of earrings that belonged to them or sew a keepsake to the inside of your dress to keep the memory of them close on your special day.

Honour them with flowers

A great way to feel your lost loved ones are with you on your big day is to place a bunch of flowers where they would have sat at the ceremony . This one may evoke some sad feelings if they have recently passed away though.

Another sentimental touch is to place your bouquet on their grave following the wedding.


Display their picture at the reception

This is a great idea if you and your partner have lost loved ones who you would like to remember. Have a table set aside with framed pictures of them surrounded by candles. This way your guests can also remember them on the day.

We’ve seen couples place a “wish you were here” sign on the table too, for an extra touch.

Have a drink in their memory

A less emotional way to honour a loved one would be to toast with their favourite drink. Name your welcome drink after them and have a toast before the dinner. This is a great way to bring the whole party together to remember them.

Image by Jessica Hayman

Dedicate your bouquet or buttonhole to them

Add one of their favourite flowers to your bouquet or maybe pin a small picture of them into the bouquet. This idea is particularly popular with bride’s whose fathers have passed to symbolise them walking down the aisle with their daughter. For the groom, include his loved ones favourite flower to his buttonhole.

Favours inspired by them


Celebrate their life by giving guests favours inspired by your loved one. Maybe give seeds to grow your granny’s favourite flowers or a pack of your mother’s secret recipe brownies.