Our wedding celebrant, Elizabeth Cass Kanti shares three great ideas to personalise your ceremony and make your destination wedding in Greece unique!
“This could have turned into a book if Claire hadn’t asked for my top three! Because that’s the beauty of a celebrant led ceremony – there are an infinite amount of creative ideas to include!
Plus you are free to draw on inspiration from within (or outside of) your own culture, beliefs or personalities. So here are my favourite three!”
1. Create a sensory memory
From your ceremony, most of your memories will be visual; the people surrounding you… the vibrant location… your partner next to you and all these will be captured up by your wedding photography. There is also likely to be audio; the music for your entrance and exit… the words of the ceremony… your wedding vows…. but what about if you included smell and taste?
Can you imagine being transported back to the moment when you exchanged your intentions and promises to each other just by a sip of a particular wine?
The wine ceremony will do this for you. You take two bottles of your favourite wine into the ceremony. We open one and just before you exchange your vows, you each take a sip. You savour the aroma… you let the taste sit on your tongue… at the back of your throat…. and you speak your promises over that taste.
Next we create a future memory…. The second bottle we enclose in a box and you dedicate the opening of the wine to an occasion – perhaps your wedding anniversary. Or on a ‘need to recall’ basis after an argument! Open the wine, let the taste and smell awaken the memory of what you intended and promised. Resolve your differences, forgive and move on, or just celebrate the time you’ve spent together and all that’s still to come!
2. Create a visual memory
Think “unity rituals” here. A unity ritual is any ceremonial act that symbolises, well, unity! Popular ones include sand blending (a bazillion ways to do this involving any combination of people), hand fasting, Greek wedding crowns, a rose ceremony, unity candles – it’s quite a list. You can even do sandwhich making, cocktail making or knock up a G & T!
It’s all about teamwork and support – the ritual will either show you and your partner working together to make something, or people who love you supporting you in making something.
Unity rituals are a whole other blog post (even a book!) but the point is that they add great theatre to your ceremony and theatre is visual. If your guest list is international and not everyone’s first language is English, they are a winner at engaging people in your ceremony who can’t follow it word for word.
3. Include your Guests
Yes, all of them! It’s possible. Obviously they are already included in that they are your witnesses and are watching your wedding, but you can also have them actively take part in your ceremony. Some rituals lend themselves better to more intimate gatherings, but things like a communal vow or ‘spreading the light’ can be beautifully inclusive for larger gatherings too.
“We do too!” Ask your guests to reaffirm that they will continue to love and support you as both individuals and as a married couple with a communal ‘We do!’ Or have them all sign your wedding day certificate!
The lighting and sharing of candlelight is prevalent in all Greek life. Fire, like love, does not diminish as it is shared, so spread your love by passing on the flame to lanterns held by your guests. This is easy to include if you have already lit a remembrance candle or have included a unity candle.
TOP TIP: When this is done at the end of a twilight ceremony it’s incredibly beautiful and your guests can give you a candle lit recessional as you take your first steps in wedded partnership!
Your Celebrant led wedding ceremony should have your personalities stamped all over it. Remember to include things that hold meaning to you both, or to your families if that’s important for you. Don’t just stick stuff in for the sake of it! The ideas you choose to include to personalise your ceremony should be heartfelt and reflect your identity as a couple and as individuals, And never be afraid to explore a new idea, who knows where it will take you in your ceremony!
Much love, Elizabeth
Find out more on how Elizabeth can enhance your destination wedding ceremony in Lefkada, Meganisi and Parga at www.weddingcelebrantingreece.com