Amanda Waring


The Handfasting Ceremony

It would be my pleasure to share with you any variation of the traditional Celtic handfasting. Handfasting was a pagan ritual dating back to the time of the Celts. The intended couple both declare their intent to enter into this union, and the hands of the couple are clasped and gently wrapped and fastened together with a cord or cords just before, just after, or during their vows are made to one another.

The wrapping of the cord forms an infinity symbol. The handfasting knot that is tied in a symbolic representation of oneness between the couple. In a show of unity, they become bound to each other with loving and joyful intent.

Traditionally, 3 cords are used, each a different colour: white for purity , blue for fidelity, and red for passion for example. Pink symbolises love. Green for fertility and growth.Purple for a spiritual connection and emotional strength .
You may wish to choose colours that connect with the colour theme for the wedding too, it is your choice.
We then braid any three cords together, or use only one cord. It is something that couples sometimes choose to do, braid the cords themselves to add to the heartfelt intention of the ceremony.

Handfasting options

Other aspects to the ceremony can include the blessing of the space, the elements of earth, air, fire or water may be spoken of as being symbolic all aspects of life and creation. The lighting of candles and a unity candle. The sharing of a loving cup by the couple and the exchange of love tokens, be that jewellery, or letters, rings, shells or roses, or whatever feels right. The practice of jumping over the broom may also be included to symbolise sweeping away the past of the old single life into a new life together.

Many couples I am a celebrant for are adopting this beautiful old custom, as a component of their wedding ceremony or as a ceremony on it’s own. You do not have to be pagan, celtic or wiccan to experience this ancient tradition of “Tying the knot”

I can adapt the hand fasting to suit your needs as the main ceremonial element in addition to, or instead of the ring exchange.
A handfasting in the modern world can be ritualistic and ceremonial sign of a commitment for “as long as love shall last.”

It may be seen as a trial marriage for couples who wish to ease themselves into married life and can be seen a formal betrothal. It is a beautiful ceremony to experience and watch.


Amazing Venues

I am delighted to conduct truly magical celtic handfastings at dawn or sunrise at Stonehenge, please contact me for more details. 

You may want to consider your hand fasting ceremony amongst beautiful redwood trees in an exquisite venue.

I have access to many sacred sites of great beauty and look forward to sharing them with you.


“wherever you are, and whatever you do, be in love” – Rumi

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