Wedding Traditions :: The Saber Arch

A wedding is a tradition in and of itself, but within a wedding there are many opportunities for a couple to connect to their history, heritage, family, and values. We’re excited to introduce this new series, Wedding Traditions, where real brides and grooms share the traditions they included in their big day, and what the tradition means to them.  


From Erica, the bride: “Our service member guests and the bridal party from the Navy, Marine Corp, and Air Force all wore their military branch’s dress uniform for the wedding. It was a really great way to represent Alex’s occupation and his experience at the Naval Academy. In addition, we also entered our ceremony through a Naval and Marine Corp Sword Arch. At most weddings it is usually pretty quiet during this tradition, but our guests couldn’t contain themselves and began cheering half way through. It was so much fun!”

Photography by Katrina Louise  / Event Planning & Design: To La Lune Events 

saber arch wedding tradition


From Kara, the bride: “The saber arch is traditionally used in military weddings to salute the new bride and groom. Josh’s sister, who married an Army officer, also had a saber arch in her wedding. Only the bride and groom walk through the arch itself, and are introduced at the end of the arch by one of the bearers. After the introduction, and a quick kiss, the bride gets a pat on the bum with a saber by another bearer, who says “welcome to the Army!” Our saber bearers were friends that were in the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets with Josh and commissioned into the military, and we also each had a friend from home that was able to participate. The lucky bearer who got to pat my bum is actually a friend of mine who I’ve known since kindergarten!”

Photography: Sara Petras /  Event Planning & Design: Orpha Events


Did you include any meaningful traditions in your wedding? Send us a pic and a paragraph at


  • Many thanks for this beautiful feature! Kara and Josh were the sweetest couple and Marisa of Orpha Events made their day feel flawless. I loved this saber arch entrance! So classic! This will never go out of style. I love that it is gracing the pages of Snippet and Ink!

  • A military wedding is steeped in traditions and history – I learned so much working with Josh, Kara and their families. It was a true honor to bring this day to life with them. Sera Petras put her artistry to work behind the camera lens. Pippin Hill was perfect in every way and our floral designer Hedge Fine Blooms and fantastic confectioner Paradox Pastry all contributed to a fabulous day. Thank you for sharing this beautiful shot!

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