All you need is love and … a unity ceremony?
A unity ceremony is an act you can incorporate into your wedding ceremony which symbolises the joining of two separate lives, the idea is that as individuals you are both special and just as important separate, but when joined together you create something unique and beautiful. A unity ceremony can also be used to symbolise the joining together of two families, if one or both of you already have children, either together or separately.
You do not have to do a unity ceremony, and you should (in my personal opinion) only include one if it is something that absolutely speaks to you.
There are a few different options, that I’ll outline below, and by no means is this the complete list, and there may be a suggestion on this list that sparks an idea with you and your loved one for something completely original. Go for it I say!
Wine/Beer Ceremony – You each choose a wine (red and white work well), but obviously two that work well together, and you each pour a small amount from your individual glass into a centre glass and then both take turns taking a sip (or a gulp) from the center glass. This also works extremely well with beer if you’re not a wine fan.
Love Letter and Wine Box – You choose a bottle of favourite wine (or beer) and both add love letters to each other (that you have previously written) into a box, to be opened on your one year anniversary. It’s a nice reminder of what you were both feeling on your wedding day.
Elephant Toothpaste – It’s a funny sounding science experiment, involving you both adding chemicals together to create a pretty spectacular explosion of types. Awesome to add for a bit of drama to your ceremony.
Unity Candle – Use a large candle and then both the bride and groom light the candle using their own individual candles. This is probably the most common unity ceremony performed at weddings. Important to remember to use hurricane lamps if you are having your wedding ceremony outside, to protect your flame from going out.
Reverse Candle Lighting – The reverse candle lighting ceremony starts with the bride and groom lighting their individual candles from a single/joint one and then proceeding to then light candles held by their bridal party, who then help to light each guests candle. You would end up with a beautiful sea of candle light, each lit from the same candle.
Sand Ceremony – Both the bride and groom (and children if they are being included) pour different coloured sands into a central vessel, creating a pretty pattern. Each different coloured sand represents a different person. If both the bride and groom are from different areas, you could use sand from your hometown beaches.
Hand Fasting – Hand fasting is a Celtic tradition which involves binding the hands of a couple with ribbon or cord either before, during or after reciting your vows, it is used as a way to symbolise your commitment and devotion to one another.
Tree planting – All about the environment and everything green? Then you may want to include a tree planting as a way of symbolising your union. You can choose any type of plant/tree you like, and then the tree can be displayed in your home afterwards.
Unity sandwich – You like peanut butter, and he likes jam, perfect, use these two spreads (or any other favourite sandwich fillings) to create the perfect sandwich.
Jumping the broom -Jumping the broom is a time honoured tradition where the bride and groom actually jump over a broom. The act symbolises a new beginning and the sweeping away of the past.
Hand washing ceremony – You and your groom wash your hands in a large bowl of water. The washing of your hands symbolises the fresh start that you are embarking upon in your marriage, while having your hands dried by your spouse symbolises the act of being vulnerable to each other, and letting yourself be cared for by another.
Mixing Oil and Herbs – If you’re both foodies, then you could mix herbs and oil together as part of your unity ceremony.
Creating art together – Purchase a large canvas, and then each of you choose a colour that represents you, and then you create a painting together using the two different colours. The upside is you now have a meaningful piece of art work to display in your home after.
Lock unity – Each of you choose a lock with a key, you both place your wedding band on the lock and use the key to lock it before the ceremony. This symbolises your separate and individual lives, during the ceremony, you use the keys to open the locks, exchange your wedding bands and then entwine the two locks and lock them together, symbolising your commitment forever.
Unity hour glass – Very similar to a sand ceremony, you use a decorative hour glass to pour your separate sand into. Plus side is that you now have a useful item to use in your home.
Brand – For those of you farmers, or those getting married on a farm, you could have a brand made of your initials, either as two different brands that you could join together on the day or one brand with both your initials together, that you can brand a piece of decorative wood together. It would be a pretty impressive part of your ceremony.
Fishermans Knot – The Fishermans knot is also know as the ‘lovers knot’ It is made from two cords which represent you as individuals, as you fasten the two cords together this act represents the joining of your two lives in marriage. Once the knot is completed then this represents your future strong, and only becoming stronger under pressure.
As you can see there are a multitude of different options if you are thinking about including a unity ceremony as part of your wedding ceremony, and maybe this list may spark some ideas for something original to you as a couple. The options are endless.