Sunday, 2 August 2015


Mr. & Mrs. Kerr
Every great wedding has a theme. Some themes are traditional, based on colours or flowers for instance, whilst others are in your face. Just type "themed weddings" into Google and see what images come up. You'll be amazed.

I recently returned from Northern Ireland where I conducted my first medieval themed wedding for a thoroughly modern couple. It was a great choice with the groom's background in archaeology and the couple's wish to have a mix of traditional, contemporary and uniquely personal to them ceremony elements. 

Don't drop the rings!

The wedding rings were presented on a sword and Helen and Thomas drank from a quaich. Sharing the contents (in this case mead) of a quaich - a two handled shallow drinking cup - is symbolic of the trust, love and peace between two people and represents the life they will share together. 

Tying the knot - literally!
The couple also opted for a hand fasting ceremony. The original meaning of “tying the knot,” hand fasting is where the couple's hands are tied with ribbons, cloth or cord to represent the bringing together of the two hearts in a marriage of strength and unity forever.

Capping off this alternative wedding ceremony were family shields, made by a friend of the bride, that adorned the sumptuous room where Helen and Thomas married. 

Family shield
The biggest day of your life should be incredibly special, fantastically memorable, undeniably unique and deeply meaningful to the couple and that was undeniably the case here. No cut and paste ceremony for these two!

Helen and Thomas were able to marry where, when and in the style they wanted because a wedding ceremony involving a civil celebrant is not subject to the same constraints and limitations as a service conducted in a church or your local Register Office.

They were actually legally married the day before the ceremony, attending the Registrar's office in Belfast City Hall to make a public declaration in front of two adult witnesses which was then ‘authorised’ by a Registrar.

With the legal side sorted, Helen and Thomas were then able to concentrate on the fun part which was their medieval themed ceremony in front of family and friends. They had the wedding they wanted, not the one they were told they must have.