The pillow used for the wedding ring bearer is a small but very important part of the wedding ceremony. Once you decide to include a ring bearer in your wedding, you need to explore the different types of pillow designs and fabrics available.
Why Do We Need a Wedding Ring Pillow?
A wedding day has many focal points: the bride and her gown, the scrumptious wedding cake, the glittering white limousine, and the bridal bouquet, to name a few. The smallest focal points of all are undoubtedly the most popular, however: the wedding rings. A wedding ring pillow highlights the rings and their function, giving them a place of honor in the ceremony just as they will have a place of honor on the newlyweds' fingers. By using a pillow to transport the rings, the couple emphasizes the importance of what the rings represent, because without that love and commitment, the wedding could not take place.
There are as many designs for ring pillows as there are for wedding dresses, veils, tiaras, and the rings themselves. Popular options include:
- White or ivory silk or satin pillows.
- Square, oval, or heart shapes.
- Stacked pillows of graduated sizes.
- Pillows with different accents, such as fur, lace, pearl, crystal, or ribbon trim, tassels or bows on the corners, or decorative buttons forming the depression at the center.
- Themed pillows using butterflies, crosses, hearts, monograms, or shells as accents to match other wedding accessories.
- Hanging pillows instead of pillows to be carried.
- Pillows adapted to be carried by a pet.
- Designs that match the bride's garter.
- Colored pillows that match the wedding flowers, location, theme, or bridal party dresses.
- Pillows with inset ring boxes that eliminate the need to tie or sew rings to the pillow itself.
Which Design Is Best?
When choosing a ring bearer pillow, many couples assume that a simple white silk pillow is best because it reflects that bridal splendor and easily matches any white gown. In actuality, however, the pillow should be chosen to highlight the rings as well as to match the wedding, and several considerations are necessary.
- The pillow material should be able to hold the rings stable. Most pillows come with ribbons or other ways to attach the rings to slippery silk or satin.
- The pillow's color should contrast with the rings. White gold or platinum rings may be lost on a white pillow, while a colored pillow will show them off more clearly.
- The fabric should be smooth and blemish free; even small tears or snags could get caught on the rings, leaving tendrils of fabric clinging to the prongs or settings of any diamonds or gemstones.
How to Use the Pillow
In many cases, the wedding ring pillow only serves a symbolic purpose: false rings are attached to the pillow while the real rings (often costing hundreds or thousands of dollars) are entrusted to a member of the bridal party, usually a best man duty. If, however, a couple wants to display their true rings on the pillow during the ceremony, certain precautions must be taken to ensure their safe passage down the aisle.
- Most pillows feature ribbon tendrils that can be tied about the rings to secure them, but be sure that the knots are not too tight to remove easily.
- The rings can be loosely sewn to the pillow, but the thread should be thin and loose for easy removal.
- If the ring bearer is very young or may drop the pillow, it is wise to attach an elastic wrist strap to the underside to help them keep hold of the slippery fabric.
- The pillow should be balanced on the palms, not gripped at the edges, and carried reverently in front of the waist or chest. Ring bearers may need practice before the ceremony to carry the pillow properly.
- After the pillow arrives at the altar, it may be given to the officiant or placed on a pedestal or other location until the rings are needed. This relieves the ring bearer - usually a young boy - of the unnecessary tedium of standing still throughout the ceremony.
Wedding Ring Pillow Alternatives
Some couples may prefer a more unique option than the traditional silk or satin pillow. Alternatives include:
- Not using a ring bearer or pillow at all.
- Opting for a ring chest - a specially designed, oversized ring box that is elaborately decorated and used in place of the pillow. This is a more secure option for the rings without needing to tie or sew them to a pillow.
- Having a young child ring a bell as they process instead of carrying a pillow.
- Using a themed object that matches the wedding motif, such as a decorative shell for a beach wedding, a crystal carriage for a romantic touch, or the rings suspended within a horseshoe for a western theme.
The wedding rings are undoubtedly one of the most important features of the wedding ceremony, and an appropriate wedding ring pillow gives them the place of honor, respect, and reverence they deserve. By choosing an appropriate style of pillow and using it carefully or opting for a more unique alternative, couples ensure that the rings not only make it safely up the aisle, but that they do so in style.