Handfasting Wedding Ceremony



Handfasting Wedding Ceremony

a little bit of history, a little bit of you

This is the year of the handfasting!

And to be honest, I am THRILLED.   One of my absolute favourite elements to add into a ceremony has to be a handfasting.  I’ve done Pagan, Ukranian, Celtic, Wiccan, Norse, Faerie and even a very contemporary take on the olden day bind.  I love them. I love explaining the history and showing more generations that there are so many different ways to wed!

One of the first weddings I ever performed had a handfasting!  Apparently 90% of the officiants around would not perform one. I had never done one before, but why would I say no to learning something new?  You’re right if you assume I spent 2 months researching, reviewing and watching videos on it! I am SO grateful as I ended up building my own handfasting ceremony script from scratch and it gave me a sense of freedom to have fun with it!

The history of the handfasting goes back to around the 16th and 17th century in Scotland.  The term purely means “a contract”. A bind. It is said that when a couple was going to wed, they would sometimes have to wait months, even a year for a member of the clergy to arrive for a marriage.  The act of “Tying the knot” bound a couple to each other in the interim. 

There is also the idea that the knot was tied between a couple as their engagement.  The handfasting was not legally binding, but allowed the couple a full year and one day,  trial marriage. Once the time was up, they could choose to sever the bind without harm or become married legally.

Personally I love the idea of tartans or cloth as binding.   That in times of struggle, when you couldn’t afford an expensive diamond ring, the couple would each tear a piece of their clothing and bind the two together.  For me, there is something romantic in this concept. These couples chose love. They chose each other. And they did it with such conviction that they tore a piece of their own clothing (And I’m not talking about picking out a piece from your closet.  We are talking one shirt of probably 3!) to bind each other, their families, their love for each other. 

I definitely love adding in the true visuals of the Bonds of Matrimony to a service.  As popular as they have become in my circle, I still love to see the faces of guests before the ceremony when they see the cords hanging at the altar! 

Handfasting origins are definitely arguable but for me, that piece doesn’t matter.  I love blending something old with something new. And to this point, no cords have ever been the same.  

When I perform a handfasting ceremony I offer up a bit of lore to let people know some of the history involved.  After this, I curate a blessing for the couple. Sometimes it’s personal, sometimes it’s traditional and sometimes it’s downright witchy!

Once we’ve blessed them and they have agreed to bind, I make the bind for the couple to tie.  After a few more words and a cue to tie the knot, the couple can then pull the cord(s) and the binding is complete! 

Some people choose to keep the cord as a keepsake.  Some display it in a shadow box as a memory alongside other pieces from the day.  Some set it on fire to allow the elements to keep it. It’s such a personal piece that it’s the couples preference!

And when it comes to styles, I’ve had nautical rope, ribbons, jute, upholstery ties, handmade pieces with charms, and yes, even many a tartan!  And they are all beautiful. Because they are unique to the couple.  

So take your time, think about what a handfasting means to you, and make it your own!  There are no rules in 2019!


Rev Audra

One Soul Awakening




Just add two dashes....

Just add 2 dashes…

Awaken your relationship

Let’s talk about love.  Like real love. The kind that gets dirty, nasty, beautiful, loving and well, basically the best anecdote for being here some days.  

Now, the love that we all know, probably really well, it’s pretty.  It’s romantic. It’s always perfect and uplifting and cheerful. It’s the love that gets you in love.  Like babies. Super cute so they survive, right? Well, that’s a huge part of love. It’s exploration. It’s fun.  It’s new. It just feels so right. But what happens next?

Well, next is usually a place in the relationship called complacency.  It’s not a pretty, bright, uplifting place. But you know what? It happens.  And truly, it’s what you do about it. Complacency is kind of a dirty word, but if you acknowledge that you’re in it, it can be totally pivotal.   It’s a place that love goes when it needs a little vacation. When love realizes that there are just too many dishes to do today. That the baby was up ALL night and love needs to hit snooze.

I don’t believe anyone wants to be in a complacent relationship.  Yeah, sure, I love having a loveless marriage and boring life….said no one.   Think about all of the work it took to court and fall in love? Well, that too needs upkeep!  And when you start putting the time in, what you get on the other side of complacency is gorgeous.  It’s comfortable AND exciting. Like a well padded roller coaster maybe? Maybe. I just know that I’ve been on all sides of love and it totally feels like smooth sailing once I dropped the bs and committed to change. Committed to dropping ego and giving in.  To work. To love. To talking. And now to flourish (kinda the best part).

Relationships have so many layers, timelines, experiences, feelings….None are the same.  But one thing I can attest to is that they take work. And that’s ok! It’s actually awesome!  When you look at your partner that you’ve chosen for life, say yes! Say yes to talking, laughing, crying, maybe yelling.  But just be sure to hold that love you have so dear.

Here are some steps we’ve taken to keep going strong when times get tough.

1- call each other out on things that upset you (in the most loving, non-condescending way) and be open to criticism

2- be ok with admitting that you are probably doing things that drive your partner crazy

3- be willing to change habits

4- listen to each other

5- have dates (sounds sooooo obvious but rarely happens after marriage)

And my favourite one - have meetings.  This one has changed my life. Every week we hold a family meeting to talk about the good, the bad and the ugly.  It gives everyone a chance to openly talk about how their week went and what they can do to move forward and grow.  It also is great to stay on top of life, tasks, dates, everything. I know it may not sound very romantic but it leads to owning your feelings, getting organized and living blissfully!

Stay in love my friends!  Or reach out to me if you need help or have any questions about co-existing with the love of your life xx

Abundant Competition


Abundant Competition

One Soul Awakening

What is competition in a world of abundance?

When I wandered around the Hamilton Wedding Show a few weekends back, I was surrounded by the crazy beautiful world of all things wedding. It’s a massive industry.  A beast. And with only a few areas: Officiant, Venue, Decor, Photographer, Attire and Flowers. Don’t be offended if I missed your expertise - I generally leave after the ceremony ;)

So with that in mind, how do we all “compete”?  I was asked while wandering around that day, who my competitors were.  And to be honest, it stumped me. I mean, yes, other wedding officiants.  But really, are we competing?

I can’t help but feel that we don’t need to compete. What I do may be the same service as another, however, they don’t have me.  And I don’t have them. I love that I attract a specific client. You draw what you project. Not every type of wedding is made for me, for my style.  And I’m totally ok with that! In fact, I kinda pride myself on that. And maybe that’s what sets me apart. I don’t want to please everyone, but for those that I do...I wanna knock their socks off!

Then it got me thinking about the world, population, and too many other things that make my head spin. And it made me think harder about abundance.  The fact that this planet is abundant and perfect and that we can each have everything we’ve ever wanted. And I do truly believe that. When we put our focus into what we want, I mean, what we REALLY want.  And we are clear with our thoughts, ideas and intentions, we will get exactly that. I can attest that it really does work that way.

And with that note, I don’t want to compete (tell that to my husband after a game of Monopoly!).  I am me, and I’m the only me out there. Can we all say that together now? Create what you want and go for it! Be clear, precise and thoughtful, and you’ll never have to use the word “competition”.  Because you’ll always have exactly what you are asking for.

Who's on trend?

What would you say the biggest wedding trend is right now? What would you say if I told you it really didn’t matter? And what would you say if I told you to go ahead and have the wedding you’ve always wanted?!   As much as I do love a good Pinterest board of wedding trends, I see a lot of couples stressing over little details or feeling pressured into making their day looking like something from a magazine.

I wanna tell you right now.  You don’t have to. You want a Star Wars themed wedding? Go for it! Love neon but blushes are all the rage? So what?!  You wanna get married in the Rockies? Call me! ;)

When I married my superstar hubby, we opted for Christmas because the whole place was decorated.  I didn’t have a colour, a wedding party, heck I barely remember what I even said during my vows. What I DO remember about that day though was the love I felt.  I danced my butt off to every song my husband lined up on the iTunes cue.

I’m not saying, don’t go all out on your big day.  I just want to tell you that it’s ok to do it your way.  Just do you, and remember what’s important! You’ve already hired the best decorator, let them worry about the details!

On another note, I REALLY want to see the decorators out there that are pushing the envelope! Let’s start getting creative and having some fun!  I mean, this IS the party of our lives, right? If I were to do it all over again, I would rent a carousel and turn the place into a mini theme park with a dance floor!  …...but who wouldn’t do that lol ;)

Just some food for thought!

wacky wedding