Cornwall Celebrants

Handfasting Ribbon

materials and completed handfasting ribbon

If you choose to have a hand-fasting as part of your ceremony your next choice is the ribbon with which to make the bind. You can use plain ribbons, with each ribbon symbolising a promise and the knotting of the ribbon symbolising the seal of a contract. The colours of the ribbon can be chosen to match the promise being made. Thus a promise about love might be sealed with a red ribbon.

You may decide you want to create your own ribbon choosing colours that are significant to you. A simple plait can be very effective and if you have made it for this purpose you have almost certainly woven your love into it.

plaited hand-fasting ribbon

When Megan and I decided to renew our vows we decided to have a hand-fasting. We always do things together so making our handfasting ribbon was definitely a joint project. First we gathered together all manner of ribbons and objects that had meaning for us and which could be woven into our handfasting ribbon.

hitch knotted laces

We began by each making a large number of hitch knots in a leather lace. We had learned how to tie a hitch knot for our first holiday together when we went on a canal barge. The knot as well as being appropriately named and being part of our shared experience, creates a loop so we could thread other ribbons through them. We had a ribbon that had been around our wedding cake so that was included. We had ribbons from medals given for completing marathons and objects such as a pearl from Megan’s wedding shawl. As we took turns in adding to the handfasting ribbon we felt we were weaving our history and story into it. It was a very enjoyable process and the result we will treasure as a work of love and art.

If you decide to have a handfasting, consider the different ways it can be done and choose what works for you. If you have chosen us to conduct your ceremony we will of course help with advice, ideas and encouragement.


July 2019

A Cornish sunset
A Cornish sunset
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