Top 14 Wedding Ceremony Ideas

Today I have a large detailed blog post on the top 14 wedding ceremony ideas for you to look at and potentially consider for your own wedding day ceremony! From commonly known ideas to unique ones, there is sure to potentially be one you haven’t heard of yet!

The Fisherman’s Knot or Lover’s Knot

A true lovers knot.  The knot they are tying is a fisherman’s knot and becomes ever stronger under pressure. The symbolism is that marriage represented by the knot is strengthening them.  These 2 cords represent each of you as individuals. The unique and special gifts you bring to your marriage.  As you fasten your pieces together, this represents joining your 2 lives into one common purpose.  The completed knot represents the future, that your relationship will continue to be strong despite the inevitable changes life brings. Although the fisherman’s knot is the simplest to tie, it is also one of the sturdiest, as pressure is applied the knot becomes stronger.

Bride and groom completing a fisherman's knot or lover's knot during their Nova Scotia wedding ceremony at the Lower Deck Tap Room.

It’s the goal of marriage to achieve a blending of hearts and lives. The space between these cords formed by the knot symbolize that there is space in your lives to encourage and nurture individual growth. Once tied, the bride and groom pull on this rope to see it strengthen under pressure while still seeing the individual cords forming a stronger bond now and forever.  

Handfasting

Handfasting is an ancient Celtic ritual. In which the hands are tied or bound together to symbolize the binding of two lives. Today it is used in many ceremonies and not only Celtic rituals.

Wine Bottle in a Box

The bride and groom place their love letters and a bottle of wine in a box and seal it with a hammer and nails.

Couples who love wine can make or buy these super cute wedding wine boxes. The couple will place the wine in the box together, sometimes love letters to each other are placed with the wine aswell. Then they close the box together. Couples usually open the wine box during either their first anniversary or their first serious fight.

The bride and groom have a wedding wine box ceremony at Saraguay House in Halifax.

Arch of Swords

The bride and groom exit their wedding ceremony as a married couple under the swords of their fellow comrades in arms. This tradition is used for couples who one or both are in military service.

Sand Ceremony

The bride and groom perform a unity wedding sand ceremony during their wedding day at White Point Beach Resort in Nova Scotia.

Often marriage is thought of as the joining of two people. In reality, a marriage joins many lives. This is most apparent when the bride and/or groom have children. With children present, marriage becomes the proclaiming of a new family. Sometimes the bride and groom will give vows to the children as well.

The bride and groom with their children perform a wedding sand ceremony at their Juno Tower wedding.

Jump the Broom

Jumping the broom signifies the couples entrance into a new life and their creation of a new family by symbolically “sweeping away” their former single lives, former problems and concerns.

Life Lessons in Marriage

Life is busy, we are all guilty of putting irrelevant things ahead of relevant things and rushing through life. We all have the ability to accomplish anything if we use our time wisely. This ritual recognizes the different lessons life represents by the different balls and the sand. The jar represents your life. The red balls represent the important things (family, friends, health and passions). Marbles are the tangible important things (car, job, home). The sand is everything else, all the small stuff. Now if you were to put the sand in the jar first there would be no room for the important stuff. The same is true in life. If you spend all your energy and time on the small stuff you won’t have time for all the important things that matter to you.

The JOP performs a life lesson in marriage wedding ceremony ritual during a wedding at the Lower Deck Tap Room with bride, groom and their family.

Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Take care of the red balls first. Set your priorities. Take a moment to look around, to look at those who surround you, friends, loved ones and family members. Cherish those who are with us, be reminded of those who can’t be with us, and treasure these memories forever etched in our hearts.

Pass the Rope

By passing the rope among the guests at the ceremony, each are able to put all their well wishes into the cords for their marriage. When the rope reaches the couple they then tie them into a braid. This ritual symbolizes that a woven cord of multiple strands is stronger then a cord alone.

Pinning of the Tartan

The father of the groom pinning the tartan sash on the bride's wedding dress at the Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel in Nova Scotia.

Following the announcement of husband and wife the pinning of the tartan takes place. This ceremony is customized to each family depending on whether the bride or the groom is being accepted into the new clan. For instance if the bride is marrying into the clan, any member of the groom’s family may present the bride with clan tartan (usually the father of the groom) in the form of a rosette pin or sash which is fastened with the clan badge. Often this presentation is pinned or dressed to the bride as acceptance into the grooms clan. Most Often the groom himself will pin or dress the bride, but it is just as emotional when the groom’s mother does the pinning.

Warming of the Rings

The bestman passes around the wedding rings during a warming of the rings ceremony to each guest for blessings on the bride and groom unity.

The ring warming gives your wedding guests the opportunity to wish you good luck for your marriage. Each guest briefly hold your rings during your ceremony and take a moment to bestow their blessings upon them.

Drinking Wine Together

The bride and groom will usually drink from a single glass of wine. This symbolizes drinking from the cup of life. And that you’ll be sharing all of its experiences together, both bitter and sweet.

The bride and groom drink wine as a show of unity during their wedding ceremony at Peggy's Cove in Nova Scotia.

Unity Tree Ceremony

A unity tree ceremony is when a couple plants a tree together during their wedding ceremony. The tree is then planted in fertile soil at your new home together. An extra special spin on this is to bring soil from your two family homes to mix in the pot, symbolizing that two house holds and hearts are now mixing into one.

Rose Ceremony

The officiant hands the bride and groom each a rose then talks about the symbolism behind the two roses. During this ritual the couple exchanges their rose with each other. Wedding Ceremonies by All Seasons has this ritual beautifully laid out, check it out by clicking here.

The bride and groom exchange roses during their wedding ceremony at the Citadel Hill in Halifax, NS.

Unity Candle Lighting 

This ceremony can happen multiple ways. Sometimes the couple just lights a unity center candle together. Often the mothers of the couple are asked to light the smaller candles for the couples to use first. Sometimes the couples light candles for loved ones that are not there then the unity candle symbolizes two flames or hearts, becoming one.

The bride and groom light the unity candle during their wedding ceremony at a church in Halifax NS.

Additional Links

1. Check out some of my favorite wedding advise blog posts…
Unplugged Wedding Ceremony
Planning A Nova Scotia Wedding-a 12 months timeline.
NS Wedding Venues Plus Tips For Choosing The Perfect Venue.

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