Wedding Flourishes – Ways to enhance your wedding: Part 1

Posted by on Nov 1, 2014 in Blog, Commitment Ceremonies, Renewal of Vows, Weddings | 3 comments

Wedding Flourishes – Ways to enhance your wedding: Part 1

by Robert Moore


Wedding Flourishes are ways to make your wedding ceremony more personal, more meaningful, and add greater feeling and emotion to the ceremony.

A Wedding Flourish is a short or small ritual action, which symbolises what has just been said.
(Warning! – This can often be the moment when the tears can begin to flow, as the ritual act connects the head and the heart.)

Probably the most common wedding flourish is where Dad is asked, “Who brings this woman to marry this man?” Dad says, “I do.” He then joins the hands of the bride and groom, and in doing so, he is symbolically enacting what he has just said.

We live in a world where we are surrounded by words all the time. In fact we are so bombarded with words these days – from television, advertisements, billboards, slogans etc. – that the saying “Talk’s cheap” really can be true.

But we don’t want this to be true of our marriage ceremony. If the words seem to be going on and on and the minds of the guests wander, a timely ritual can help bring people back to the present.


Unity Ceremonies

One of the favourite flourishes that people like to include in their wedding is some form of the Unity Ceremony.

This usually takes place straight after the Vows, but can be performed at any point the couple wish.


The Candles

In the Candles version of the Unity Ceremony, three candles are used.

Two of these are the same, and the third one is larger and more special. This third candle is the Candle of the Marriage – the one that is being created here.

The three candles are placed on a table which is off to one side.

The two smaller outer candles symbolise the couple as individuals, and if desired, their families of origin. In that case, the outer candles are lit before the ceremony begins – more often than not by the mothers from the families of origin, and otherwise by the groom.

When the bride and groom perform the Unity Ceremony, they face the guests, and using matches or tapers, they simultaneously light the centre Candle of the Marriage from the flames of their personal outer candles.

Sometimes, almost at the end of the wedding, the couple presents the outer candles to their mothers as an act of appreciation to their families of origin. When this is done, heads really connect with hearts, and it is good to have a box of tissues handy.


The Joining of the Sands

The Sand Ceremony can add that something extra to your Gold Coast Wedding

The Sand Ceremony

The Sand Version of the Unity Ceremony can also be performed by the bride and the groom. It performs the same function as the Candles ceremony, except that different coloured sands in two separate clear glass receptacles represent the two individuals instead of two smaller candles.

The couple pour and mix the different coloured sands into a much larger glass receptacle – thus symbolising the mixing of and blending of the qualities and natures of these two individuals into that of the marriage.


The Rose Ceremony

Another alternate version of the Unity Ceremony is The Rose Ceremony where the couple ceremonially place two roses into a single vase.


The Binding Ceremony

A final version of the Unity Ceremony is the Binding Ceremony.

Consider a ribbon binding ceremony as an optional extra to your Gold Coast Wedding

The Binding Ceremony

This involves the celebrant entwining a longish ribbon (usually taken from the best man) loosely around the couples’ hands just before the Asking or the Vows. Often it is accompanied by a reading of the old German poem The Silken Ribbon (in English of course!)

The ribbons are left in place until the Ring Ceremony makes their removal imperative. This ceremony notes the binding nature of marriage, but the looseness of the ribbons emphasises the free and voluntary nature of the relationship, and the joy with which it is ideally approached.


IN ALL VERSIONS, there needs to be a brief narration, explaining the symbolism and significance of this short ritual as it occurs.


  1. I have read so many posts concerning the blogger
    lovers however this piece of writing is genuinely a good paragraph, keep it up.

  2. String Lights is the first that come into my head when thinking about elvating an ordinary wedding space instantly to something extraordinary.

    • I assume this is a way to decorate the wedding venue . . . I have seen this done at a home wedding on a number of occasions, and it looks quite magical! Thanks for your thoughts. Rob M.

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