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Romantic Rituals for Any Wedding

Shared by Helen Schrader
Category Weddings Around the World
Tags Uae Dubai Hs Celebrants romantic rituals Helen Schrader Ceremony Celebration Of Marriage Wedding Couple Vows Husband Wife Love

A wedding is not only the uniting of two people, but two families merging as one. Clarity and respect with regard to traditions, rituals and language is essential to make a memorable and enjoyable ceremony.

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Photo credit: Ainouna Ayad Photography

There is a trend worldwide for couples to choose a contemporary civil ceremony. The aim for the celebrant is to conduct a personal and meaningful ceremony and the inclusion of rituals is a way of achieving this. These rituals may stem from the couple’s cultural backgrounds. If it is a fusion of cultures, there is no better way for families to learn and appreciate significant traditions about each other. It is very important for the celebrant to explain the symbolism of a ritual so guests will understand and enjoy this part of the ceremony. Adding a visual element keeps them entertained!

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Photo credit: Hitched In Dubai

Rituals Crossing Cultures  These rituals signify the union of two people becoming one. It is important when choosing a ritual for it to be meaningful and relevant to your ceremony, and in no way vilify or insult another culture by its use. Many of these rituals are suitable for the involvement of family and children. There is enormous scope for couples to personalize rituals with their own wording, props and wedding themes. Make it yours and just enjoy it and your family and friends will too.

This first ritual stems from Celtic and pagan roots and originally celebrated the betrothal or engagement of a couple, really the original commitment ceremony. The reading called Blessing of Hands can be incorporated with the ‘Hand-fastening.

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. Hand-fastening – ribbons, cords, lace and special fabrics can all be used for the binding and is a perfect ritual to involve the bride and groom’s mothers. Originally the whole ceremony would have focused around the Hand-fastening, with each binding a vow being repeated or acknowledged. In a more modern setting the wrists can be bound before the couple read their personal vows. While the hands are bound, another guest can read the moving words from the Blessing of Hands

. Unity Candle – the flame is a universal symbol of the light within and of the human spirit. Candle lighting is popular around the world and this ritual can involve the bride and groom’s mothers who each light a candle to represent their families. Towards the end of the ceremony the couple will together light the center unity candle, representing the merging of their lives and families. Lanterns can be used too as candles are best not attempted at a beach setting.

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Photo credit: Studio K Photography

. Sand – blending of sand to signify two individuals coming together forever entwined like the sand they are pouring into the bottle. Sand can be collected from significant places visited by the couple or perhaps beach or desert sand from the ceremony venue. Alternatively wedding colors can be incorporated to make a beautiful pattern – a very inclusive ritual with children or close family.

. Ring Warming – before the ring exchange the rings are passed hand-to-hand between the guests who take a few seconds to send their good wishes and blessings. The rings may be in a box or on a cushion or shell – spreading the love!

. White Dove Release – symbol of peace, love and happiness all elements for a successful marriage. You have to love handling birds! It is a wonderful moment when they take flight.

. Wedding Vow Memento – a silver scroll holder that your wedding vows can be slipped into at the end of your exchange of vows. This can be displayed as a reminder of your day.

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. Memory Box – an extension of the silver scroll holder. The couple places memorable items into this box that can be opened on a significant anniversary. Think - time capsule! What would you put in it? Photos; love notes; wine; wedding vows; wedding stationery; readings from the day; book of poetry; a shell from the beach. The list is endless.

. Fisherman’s or True Lover’s Knot – two cords, forming a durable bond, resembling a figure eight. It is a simple but strong knot that under pressure does not break. Choose colours that are meaningful - perhaps your country’s national color or just your wedding theme. Needs practice for a seamless performance on the day. Particularly apt for a harbour-side or boat wedding and for the nautically minded couple.

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Photo credit: Studio K Photography

. Rose – offer each other a rose to symbolize that life is beautiful but also has its challenges and thorny patches. A rose can also be placed on an empty seat to remember a loved one that has passed away. 

. Tasting Honey – sweeten your day and offer each other a taste of honey, which represents the sweetness of life together.

. Music & Song – surprise your loved one with a favourite or traditional song with the words changed to suit the day. At a ceremony I conducted, the groom surprised his bride with an a cappella group bursting into song at the perfect moment.

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Rituals For Guests

Blow bubbles - you have finished your beautiful ceremony everyone has loved it and now they can shower you with some fun. Let’s forget the confetti or rice (some venues don’t allow it) and blow bubbles (the non staining variety please). Bubbles look wonderful in photos and also keep children amused during the ceremony.

Ring Those Bells – guests are given beribboned bells of varying sizes to ring as you and your bridal party sashays back down the aisle - a musical finale for a memorable ceremony.

All these rituals are just suggestions – may they be an inspiration for you to create your own rituals or put your own particular stamp on one that appeals to you.



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Photo credit: Hitched In Dubai

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