The Original ‘Tying the Knot’

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More and more people are adopting a less traditional and more European approach to their wedding day by having a small informal registry office declaration of marriage and register signing, then opting for a unique larger ceremony to celebrate their marriage a few days later with family and friends. One advantage of this is for a celebratory ceremony, the venue choice is wider, (no need to use a registered venue), a chance to make a ceremony truly personal and meaningful. So when you are looking for something a bit different for your wedding ceremony a hand fasting could be just the ticket to make that the day just that little more special.

Hand fasting is steeped in history and involves a ritual of tying the hands of the couple together and tying a knot. When the hands are removed, the knot remains and the couple have something tangible to remember the bond they have both just made. Historically, the couple, after tying the knot had one year and a day to live together and after that period could decide to untie the knot and go their separate ways or remain with the knot tied. Today, however, it is more a symbolic ritual and one you can really make your own. You can choose coloured ribbons such as pink symbolising unity and red for passion, make your own fasting chord or incorporate the old, new borrowed and blue custom.

Hand Tying

To complement the ritual, the couple can devise their own vows and the celebrant can incorporate the true essence of individuality into the ceremony including the involving close family and friends who lay the chords over the couple’s hands as a symbol for their love and support of the marriage. The hand fasting is also a great way to renew your vows as a public symbol of your past and continued commitment to each other.

In today’s world more families are uniting through marriage, children and step children can also be bound together with the couple as a symbolic gesture of the creation of a newer family unit.

The possibilities are endless and one thing is for sure, both the couple and guests will remember this special moment even more as the wedding with something different!

Author: David Feakes is a professional celebrant and member of the Fellowship of Professional Celebrants and is available to help your design, write and conduct hand fasting and other marriage ceremonies. For more information visit his website.

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