Unity candles have become quite popular for weddings, renewal of vows and naming ceremonies.
In it’s simplest form, all that you need are three candles and suitable holders. Usually, two of the candles are tall and slim and the third is wider. They can be co-ordinated with your colour scheme; adorned with ribbons or other decorations; they can be inscribed with your names and the date; or they can simply be left as plain, naked, candles. As always, it is your choice. (Photo by Struth Photography)
When used at a wedding, or renewal of vows, the taller candles are lit near the beginning of the ceremony. You may wish to light the candles yourself or perhaps ask a close member of your family to light a candle on behalf of you and your family. Usually, you would light the central candle together, after your vows, as this symbolises your unity.
For example, at our wedding my mum (who was the oldest guest) lit a candle on behalf of me, and my family, and my husband’s grandson (who was the youngest guest) lit a candle on behalf of his granddad, and his family. These candles represented us, as individuals, and also our separate families. Towards the end of the ceremony, we used the tall outer candles to light our central candle. The central candle represented the unity of our marriage and the uniting of the two families, into one.
The celebration of old and young and two into one was important to us. It was a very special, and poignant, moment in the ceremony and I treasure the memories, and photos, of my beautiful, recently departed, mum.
Whatever you choose to do, your Celebrant will be able to suggest wording to incorporate the Unity candles that will suit you and they will also explain the symbolism to your guests.
You may wish to include a pause for reflection, during your wedding, for people who have passed away. Lighting one, or more, memorial candles is a beautiful way to include loved ones who are not there, in person. Again, your Celebrant will be able to guide you on how to sensitively include this pause without it causing everyone to be in floods of tears for the remainder of your ceremony!
Here is a selection of unique candles that have been personalised, by me, and used in Liverpool Celebrant ceremonies.
The Unity candle with the red, green and navy ribbon has a co-ordinating promise ribbon (also available to order). These items were used for a Beatles themed renewal of vows that included a naming ceremony for the couple's son and the ribbon was used to symbolically, bind all three together.
The Unity candle set with the pale blue ribbon was used, during a wedding, to symbolise the joining of two people, two families and two countries. The vows that the couple made to each other were on the reverse of the large candle and silver initials decorated the taper candles.
The candle with the pink and silver ribbon is an Absence candle, used at another ceremony. It was lit to remember all of the couple's family and friends who were unable to be at the ceremony.
Hi, I am Lorraine Hull, an award-winning Independent Celebrant, based in Liverpool.
I am most usually asked to conduct ceremonies in North-West England and North Wales but I am happy to travel anywhere within the U.K. or abroad.
At the risk of shouting (and sounding extremely cheesy) "I LOVE MY JOB".
I love to create and conduct personal and personalised Wedding, Partnership, Commitment, Naming, and Celebration of Life ceremonies; anyone, and everyone, is welcome to ask me to work with, and for, them.
I believe that all people (and animals) should all be treated kindly, fairly and with respect.
We are all unique and we all matter.
I advocate kindness, fairness, respect and equality for all through everything that I say and do: Love is Love, Family is Family, Life is Life.
You may also like to know that I hold Public Liability and Professional Indemnity insurance, I adhere to a strict code of conduct and I am committed to developing and sharing best practice with my Celebrant colleagues, so that we can all be the best Celebrants that we can possibly be.
To contact me please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 0744 932 3988