We all want to make our weddings unique representations of us and our future hubbies, but we also know that it doesn’t always work out that way. Relatives get involved and take over guest lists; tradition or religion sometimes dictates what dress you where, where you’ll get married and who will officiate; and hyper-involved friends and relatives always find a way to alter your creative vision. However, If you find yourself in a position to arrange the happenings of your unity ceremony, it can be a great venue for personalization.
The unity ceremony is *usually* a symbolic joining of two separate lives into one. Everyone has seen the mingling of colored sand, the lighting of one candle, the drinking of wine, and even the joining of roses, but what about the mixing of the ceremonial Rum and Coke? The unity volcano? If you aren’t afraid to be the one daring bride who refuses to conform, listen up – these unity ceremonies are sure to showcase who you and your new spouse are as a couple: awesome.
1. The Unity Cocktail
The “Unity Cocktail” is growing in popularity, and can be personalized in many fun ways. Just like the pouring of the unity wine, the unity cocktail features the couple adding their glasses (or shots) into a larger glass for them both to drink from- it just does it with a little zazz. Consider Joining two shots of tequila into a margarita, or pulling your first beer as husband and wife. Add some class with a champagne/chambord mix, or even coordinate your signature cocktail as the one you and your spouse feature in your ceremony.
2. Guest Unity Ceremonies
Though usually the unity ceremony features just the two people getting married, it’s also fun to include those you invited to your wedding. After all, a marriage isn’t just the joining of two people, it’s the joining of two entire worlds. Symbolize that large union by including the people you cared enough for to invite. Many couples have had their wedding rings passed around the room as they recited their vows, allowing the guests to take part in the moment. Another new trend is to pass out ornaments/slips of paper/rocks to guests and have them write words of encouragement to the couple before the ceremony begins. During the vows, the things are collected and deposited into a vessel (a vase/keepsake box/etc) that will be kept in the couple’s home. The point is for the guests’ thoughts to be encouragement through tough times in the marriage; a reminder to always remember how much they love each other and how much the people they surround themselves with love them.
3. The Super-Personalized Unity Ceremony
There are few limits to what you can do with your unity ceremony; it is possibly the only time during your wedding day where you have complete control over what happens and when (unless you are marrying at a restrictive venue, such as a church), so take advantage of that. Are you and your husband both science nuts? Cue the science fair volcano of love. Model the unity ceremony after the first time you met, where he proposed, or even a meaningful inside joke. The point of the ceremony is for it to be symbolic of your union. If convention and tradition are your thing, pour as much sand as you like, but don’t be afraid to think outside of the unity candle.