i spy

… a good idea.
The fun part about being a wedding photographer’s assistant is you are a fly on the wall most of the day. Not saying much but observing everything. And as a fan of all things weddings, it is handy! So, when I spot a good idea, a nice touch, or something magical, you know I am going to share.
This weekend’s wedding was a little different – the groom is in the military (first for me!) and the ceremony was at the Stadacona (CFB Halifax – Canada’s east coast navy base). What’s not to love about men (and women) in Uniform? The couple were adorable and it was fun to see some military traditions added to the day to make everything extra special. My favourite being the Military Sword Arch (Saber arch).
What’s that? White gloves are required for all saber or sword bearers, who are normally officers or NCOs. Military guests usually have the option to attend the wedding in uniform or appropriate civilian attire, but none may carry a saber or sword unless attired in a formal dress uniform. Immediately after the marriage ceremony is officiated, the saber team positions itself in formation just outside the doorway, with typically six or eight saber bearers taking part. The guests of the wedding are afforded the opportunity to assemble outside to view the event before it begins. On the command, the saber team raises their sabers into a high arch, with tips nearly touching and the blades facing up and away from the bride and groom. As the newly married couple exits the building, the senior usher announces, “Ladies and Gentlemen, it is my honor to present to you (Rank) and Mr/s. (insert name)” This is modified when both parties are in the military. The bride and groom proceed into the arch, and as the couple passes through, the last two saber bearers usually lower the sabers in front of the couple, detaining them momentarily. Before releasing the couple, the saber bearer to the couple’s left gives the bride a gentle swat on her backside with his saber, announcing “Welcome to the (insert branch) Ma’am!” If the bride is in the military, this step is omitted. After the couple leaves the arch, the saber team recovers on command and dissolves formation.Only the bride and groom pass under the arch. It is also traditional at the wedding reception for the wedding cake to be cut with a saber or sword.Like this:military-sword-arch
Photo: Military Sword Arch
So the Sword Arch happened, as did the cake cutting with the sword.
There was a moment during the reception when I was half-expecting / very much hoping one of the dressed officers would break out into the Top Gun : You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling karaoke moment … but sadly, it did not happen. Next time?IMG_1104 IMG_1102
Two photos above: Taken with my spyPhone (aka iPhone): Lord Nelson Hotel, Halifax, Nova Scotia
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