In ancient Celtic and Scandinavian cultures, a couple’s left hands were bound together as a symbol of the vows they were exchanging on their wedding day. This tradition has grown, been adapted by many faith traditions and cultures. The ceremony is called Hand-fasting. It is where the term “tie the knot” originated.
There are as many ways to include this tradition in your wedding as there are weddings! Some couples like to use one cord, others use multiple cords, representing different aspects of the relationship while others use 3 cords to represent the Trinity. Vows are exchanged while the hands are bound together. Each officiant will have their favorite method and cord combination.
We like to use 4 or 5 cords, each 2 yards long. The colors most often chosen are red, blue, green, yellow and white. Red represents the passion of love and marriage. Blue is chosen to represent fidelity, compassion and adaptability. Green represents growth and prosperity, physical as well as spiritually. Yellow symbolizes friendship and communication. White represents God or Love, depending on the couple’s personal belief system.
You can utilize cords you made as one of our couples did. She was a fiber artist who spun and dyed the wool used in her cords. She and her fiancé chose charms to go on the ends of each cord to make them more personal. Other couples braid embroidery floss, 3 different shades of each color family. This requires they work together. Some of our couples include any children in the decision-making process of picking the colors and helping to braid the cords. This represents the working together to be a strong family unit. The children can then assist in wrapping the cords in order to involve them in the ceremony.
Other couples have used cords which were gifted to them by loved ones, purchased just for the occasion. This brings the love and support of others into the ceremony. If you have a themed wedding, such as a Dr. Who and want to include the hand-fasting from Riversong’s wedding, the bow-tie is used.
There are other ways to alter the idea of the handfasting to make it uniquely yours. If you are fisher people, you can tie a fisher knot. The sailor knot is one of the strongest knots there is, and is often chosen by Navy veterans. One couple, rock climbers, chose to use the anchor knot. This is the knot used to anchor their ropes to support them and keep them safe during their climbs. Each ceremony was custom written for the couple, refencing the importance of their chosen knot and how it represented something important in their relationship. They chose colors that meant something to them. These knots were then displayed in a prominent place in the home as a reminder of their wedding day.
If you are looking for a unique way to represent your values and beliefs in a completely custom written way, let us help you. Contact us today to arrange a time to talk in greater detail about what you want.