7 Alternative Unity Ceremony Ideas for Your Nonreligious Wedding

Choose a Ceremony Ritual That Reflects You as a Couple

Lighting a unity candle during the wedding ceremony is a well-known ritual, symbolizing two individuals becoming one. This popular tradition is often recognized in many religious weddings, but that's not always the case. You can select a pillar candle of any size, shape, or color, along with two taper candles to light the larger one. But, if this doesn't sounds like your kind of thing, there are several alternative options for creating a unity symbol.

1. Wine Ceremony

A personal favorite is a wine ceremony. This is where the couple selects a nice bottle of wine and during the wedding ceremony, the wine is sealed inside of a wooden box. The couple can include notes to their spouse, talking about how much and why they love them. Then, if there's ever a time when the couple is having extreme difficulties in their relationship, they open the box, pour themselves a glass of while, and read the notes about the things they love most about each other.

wine unity ceremony
Photo courtesy Justice Photography and Francine Ribeau Events by Suher

2. Blending

While we're on the topic of wine, a unique ceremony idea is for the couple to pour together two of their favorite varietal wines into one decanter, forming a new blend. The same can be done with two complimentary craft beers, liquors, or tea!

3. Pouring Sand

A ritual perfect for beach weddings is the blending of two colored sands into one vessel to be sealed after the ceremony. Couples can purchase specially designed picture frames where the sand forms around a photograph of the couple. This works exceptionally well if either of the partners have children. A family photo can be used as well, mixing multiple colors of sand forming one bond.

4. Fused Glass

Very similar to pouring sand together, there are options available for blending colored glass beads into one vase. These can be shipped off to the manufacturer and fused into one art piece speckled with the two colors.

5. Handfasting

Many cultures incorporate the binding of the couple together. It originates from Celtic handfasting where braided cords are wrapped around the couple's hands or are covered in a large garland of flowers or fabric shawl.

Hand fasting ceremony
Photo courtesy of Rochelle Cheever and Francine Ribeau Events by Suher

6. Modern Art

A relatively new unity ceremony gaining popularity incorporates two colors of paint and a blank canvas. The couple each pours their chosen color of paint across the top of the canvas. As it runs down, it blends together. This creates a one of a kind piece of modern art that the couple can hang in their home.

7. Time Capsule

Time capsules can be a fun way to document the year the couple is getting married. Incorporate a copy of the wedding program, your vows, a newspaper from the day of the wedding, and anything else that reflects the year the couple was married. This can be opened down the road on a milestone anniversary and shared with family and friends.

Get creative! You can create your own unity ceremony by blending any two things that reflect the two of you as individuals.


Hero Photo Courtesy Harper Parker Photography

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