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Would you Like a Handfasting As Part of Your Wedding Ceremony?

  • Posted on November 16, 2011 at 9:48 pm

Handfasting is an old Pagan custom, dating back to the time of the ancient Celts.

Reportedly, the act of Handfasting was the precursor to today’s engagement. A Handfasting was originally an engagement period, where two people would declare a binding union between themselves for a year and a day. In essence, the original Handfasting was a trial marriage.

Handfasting beame a popular custom in the British Isles in rural areas. It could be weeks or even months before a clergyman happened to stop by a village, so couples learned to make allowances.

A Handfasting became the equivalent of today’s common-law marriage; a man and woman simply clasped hands and declared themselves married. Generally this was done in the presence of a witness or witnesses. The local custom also often involved binding the couple’s hands together, which is where the phrase ‘typing the knot’ comes from.

Today’s modern day Handfasting ceremony is a revival of sorts, of the Handfastings of yesteryear. After a bride and groom offer their vows to one another, their hands are clasped and fastened together with a cord or cords. The Handfasting is a symbolic representation of oneness between the couple.

Today, couple’s often design and create their own Handfasting cords. A range of items can be used: double-sided satin ribbons, tartan ribbon (representing each clan), drapery cords or silk cording.

In the Pagan tradition, a hand-fasting cord is 9 feet long. It is made up of three ribbons or cords, 3 times 3 feet long. If you will braid your cord, allow for 50% shrinkage. That means that, for a braided 9 foot cord, each strand should be 18 feet. Unbraided cords are tied with knots every 3 feet.

~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs 

One Bride’s Personal Wedding Vows

  • Posted on August 18, 2011 at 10:16 pm

This bride did a beautiful job of writing her personal vows. Notice how they are so touching and heart-felt – with a dash of humor!


I love you more than I could ever express in words

Everything within me tells me

that you are the missing part of me!

You are my life and my one true love.

I give you my heart and everything I have

– and I am excited to build our amazing lives together.

I promise to love, cherish and respect you

and be the best damn wife you could ever imagine!

For all the days of my life.


~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs 

Writing Personal Vows

  • Posted on July 2, 2011 at 1:21 am

I am inspired by every couple’s love story. And when one lover takes the time to write his or her promises of love in the form of personal vows, it is a powerful thing to behold! Here are one man’s vows, offered to his beloved…

You made me smile, when there wasn’t one…

You helped me find love when I questioned what love is…

You opened my eyes to your undenying love for me when I couldn’t see it…

You’re my lover, my soul mate, my everything…

And as long as my hearts beats, my love for you just gets stronger…

I will be true and honest to the one that showed me that a guy like me can fall in love again..

I love you!

 ~ Your Vancouver Wedding Officiant ~ Roxanne Thornton ~ MarryUs