To find out how Handfastings are being reshaped for 2020-21 click here

Handfasting is an ancient ritual that embodies the qualities of a loving relationship: commitment, coming together and trust.

In its simplest form, two hands are bound together using cords or ribbons. The moment can be embellished and expanded upon in an infinite number of ways to suit your needs. Simple yet symbolic: a Handfasting can be at once deeply personal and universal in meaning.

Wild Handfasting

The roots of Handfasting lie in the murky waters of ancient Celtic tradition. Since the advent of neo-paganism in the fifties, it has become a popular alternative to a traditional wedding ceremony for Pagans and those who don’t feel connected to or welcomed by other marriage traditions.

Handfastings are wild by nature and often occur outdoors. Their symbolic impact resonates with the size and scale of the natural world, fitting beautifully onto a natural backdrop.

They evoke the history and connection to our ancient past. If you are planning a themed wedding or if honouring your ancestors, ancestral land, or heritage is important to you, a handfasting can bring the right energy into your ceremony.

If you are Pagan and dreaming of a wedding ceremony that reflects your faith, a Handfasting can be tailored to reflect all paths and traditions, including eclectic and solitary ones.

A Handfasting can also be simple and uncomplicated. If you long for an understated and meaningful moment of marriage, handfasting can evoke a depth of emotion without endless words and props.

Wild Ways to Handfast

a Pagan Handfasting
(for Pagans or those of a pagan persuasion)

Your Handfasting will be shaped around the forms and traditions of your personal path, and can include…

Creating and blessing a sacred space within which to hold the rite
Invoking the Elements and/or any other energies/deities that resonate
Speaking vows, recieving blessings from one another or guests
The handfasting
Other symbolic acts (e.g: jumping the broom, sharing a cup, making a toast)
Sharing of ‘cake and wine’
Giving thanks and closing the sacred space

a Wild Handfasting

An outdoor ceremony built around the central act of handfasting, that is not rooted in formalised ritual, but can include elements of spirituality if you wish. A wild Handfasting might include:

Welcoming guests
Encouraging presence through a mindful awareness of place and intention
Making vows, recieving blessings or wishes
Exchanging rings
The handfasting
Other symbolic acts (e.g: candle lighting, sand ceremony, ring warming)
Proclimation of marriage
Confetti throwing

© Chris Seddon Photography

a handfasting moment

Handfasting can be used to symbolise commitment and coming together in a number of different ceremony types, including:

Indoor weddings
Wedding blessings
Betrothal/Engagement celebration
Vow Renewal

Remember! Every ceremony I create starts as a blank page and will be tailored to suit your unique needs.

On the Day of your Handfasting…

I arrive with plenty of time to spare and ensure the space is set and prepared for the ceremony we have planned. This can include a cleansing and blessing should you wish and I will provide the necessary tools for this.

I liaise with any staff, family, and friends who are involved in the ceremony. If you would like to include a rehearsal before the day this can be arranged.

After the ceremony I can meet your guests and answer any questions. I will ensure any items of importance, from the ceremony, are safely packed away.

A beautifully presented copy of your Handfasting will arrive soon after for you to keep; a treasured memory of your wild and wonderful day!

Handfasting / Wedding Ceremony Fee: From £500

Added costs for travel/accommodation may be incurred depending on venue location
Prices vary for private ceremonies (under 10 people) and elopements

the hands of a couple are bound together with many coloured cords and ribbons, in a Handfasting. In the foreground a drum is visible in the hands of Celebrant Keli Tomlin

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