How The Wedding Sand Ceremony Works

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For many years the Unity Candle has been the symbol of the joining of two families with the marriage of their children. We are seeing a change in this tradition as more couples have blended families with more than one set of parents. Oftentimes step-parents will be present at the ceremony. Instead of having to choose who will light the two candles representing the brideʼs family and the groomʼs family, why not create your own unique way to incorporate all of the family members?

More and more couples are choosing to have the Sand Ceremony during their celebration instead of the lighting of the Unity Candle. While some might not have heard of this ceremony, it is becoming quite popular, especially during beach weddings. A table is placed near the front of the ceremony site and can be decorated with your wedding theme in mind. In the center of the table, a single vase will be placed. This is the only traditional part of the ceremony as this vase will hold the individual gift for contribution from each special person that will take part in the ceremony.

Often times, the couple will choose two colors of sand, one for the brideʼs family and one for the groomʼs. As each parent walks down the aisle, he or she will walk to the sand table and pour in a small amount of their color of sand, alternating colors as they symbolize the joining the families. The smaller container can be carried by the parent or the bride and groom may choose to set the containers around the Unity Vase on the table. This way, the parent can simply walk to the table, pick up their designated container, which can be labeled with place card holders, and pour the sand into the Unity Vase. We are also seeing more and more couples including their grandparents into the ceremony, whether they are present or no longer with us. Should the couple decide that they want each generation represented, they should include a small container of sand to represent the grandparents as well.

Once the parents are seated, the celebration of marriage takes place. Near the end of the ceremony, the couple will walk to the table and pour in the remaining two containers of sand and seal the Unity Vase. The couple may even ask to have the vase blessed if they are having a religious wedding ceremony.

As small as one grain of sand is, when joined together with several thousand grains, it becomes substantial. As the Unity Candle represents that the two families are now one, so will the Unity Vase. The bride and groom will also have a beautiful cherished gift from their wedding ceremony to display long after the celebration is over.