Unique Wedding Ceremony Rituals
Along with a fabulous reception, you and your fiancé will likely be planning a heartfelt wedding ceremony. It’s the most important part of your special day: the moment you say “I do!”
Of course, your wedding ceremony will include an exchange of weddings vows (along with an exchange of rings). Most ceremonies also include readings (bible passages, love poems, or meaningful quotes), along with song selections. However, many couples like to add special rituals to symbolize their unity and celebrate this new chapter of their love story!
There are so many ways to personalize your ceremony… but these alternative rituals are a great start.
Take a peek at these unique ceremony rituals, and tell us which one might be right for you!
- Unity Candle: usually, the parents of the bride and groom each light a candle after they process up to the altar; then, during the wedding ceremony, the bride and groom will each use their parents’ candles to together light their own new candle. This ceremony is versatile and adaptable to suit any couple’s needs, as you can choose whether or not to incorporate family members. It’s up to you!
- Pouring of the Sands: like a unity candle, the pouring of the sands is a popular choice to symbolize two people (or two families) becoming one. The bride and groom each take a small vial of colored sand (traditionally white for the bride and black for the groom), and pour it into a new vessel. Some couples may even use sand from past travels together!
- Handfasting: handfasting is an age-old tradition that involves tying a piece of fabric around the bride and groom’s hands. It’s actually where we coined the phrase “tie the knot!” You can even use heirloom fabrics for special meaning (i.e., a piece of ribbon from your mother’s wedding gown).
- Cord of Three Strands: A church ceremony will usually have plenty of traditions… but some couples like to add a personalized nod to their religious backgrounds. The Cord of Three Strands is a beautiful way to acknowledge religious tradition with a modern twist. Together, the couples will braid a cord of three strands (drawing from a popular bible verse).
- Washing of the Feet: Some couples choose to incorporate washing each other’s feet as a reminder of humble service to one another in marriage. This usually involves a small basin and towel, so the couples can wash each other’s feet as the officiant reads a bible passage.
- Ring Warming: an old religious tradition, ring warming involves passing the couple’s wedding bands through the pews so each of their guests can offer a blessing or good wishes over the rings. Just make sure the ring bearer or best man brings them back to the altar for the ceremony!
- Honey Ceremony: This ritual revolves around a shared honeypot. The bride and groom each dip a pinky finger into the glass, then give their spouse a taste of the honey. This is to symbolize that they will feed each other sweetness and sustenance throughout their lives together. What could be sweeter?
- Tea Ceremony: like pouring sands, a tea ceremony is a visual representation of two hearts becoming one. The bride and groom each pour a different blend of tea from their own teapot into another vessel, and then sip from the unity cup.
- Blanket Ceremony: inspired by Native American heritage, a blanket ceremony symbolizes the comfort a husband and wife will bring each other in the years to come. Wrapping a blanket around the couple’s shoulders is a symbol of their unity. Most couples use a blanket with sentimental value—like a custom-made quilt or family heirloom blanket.
Which unique ceremony alternative is right for you? Whether you’re planning a traditional church wedding, or envisioning a modern ceremony… we would love to help. Our team of wedding planners would be happy to help execute a memorable and personalized ceremony for you and your spouse-to-be.