The knot ceremony is similar to a hand fasting, but by contrast does not typically include references to any ethnic origins or religious and spiritual beliefs.
It is a lovely ritual that is extremely easy to include in a wedding because the necessary props are quite inexpensive, easy to obtain and require no special preparation or care in storage and transportation. Like the sand ceremony, it is a unity ritual well suited to outdoor weddings.
All you need are one or two lengths of cord or ribbon approximately 18-24" in length. I have seen braided cord from a craft store, ribbon the same color as the bridesmaid's dresses and even the baby blankets the bride and groom's mothers amazingly still had after all those years.
The ritual is usually held immediately prior to the Blessing of the Marriage. The cords remain tied during the blessing and then are removed immediately before the Declaration of Marriage. So as not to impede the kiss of course.
After the ceremony, the couple may choose to tie the cords into a lover's knot as a keepsake to save with their other wedding mementos.
The knot ceremony may include family representation, but can be adapted for just the bride and groom.The ceremony wording shared here includes the families in the ritual.
* If you are looking for the Fisherman's Knot ritual, click here.
* If you are looking for information about Handfastings, click here.
Below is an example of a knot ceremony, there is no such thing as the knot ceremony.
Officiant: (Bride) and (Groom), you have just sealed your relationship by the giving and receiving of rings. Today this relationship is further symbolized by the tying of a lover’s knot.
At this time, I invite (Bride) and (Groom)'s mothers to come forward to represent their respective families. These families have raised and nurtured this man and this woman and helped them become the person each holds most dear. It is right and fitting to acknowledge that now these two previously separate circles of love are being united in a new and wider circle.
____, please drape the cord over your son's wrist. It represents the wishes and blessings your family bestows upon your child, all that he is now and all he may become.
____, please drape the cord over your daughter's wrist. This cord represents the wishes and blessings your family bestows upon your child, all she is now and all she may become.
____ and ____ please tie these cords over your children's hands as a visual symbol of the joining of your two families through their hearts, bodies and souls. May their marriage endure in faith and fidelity knowing they have the blessing and support of the families that gave them life, hope and love.
(Bride) and (Groom), woven into this cord, within its very fibers, are all your hopes and dreams. With the fastening of this knot I secure the love and happiness wished here on this day for your new life together. May this cord draw your hands together in love, never to be used in anger. May the pledges you have made never grow bitter in your hearts. Two entwined in love, bound by all which brings strength to this union. Hold tight to one another through both good times and bad, and watch as your strength grows. Your bond is not formed of the knots of this cord, but instead by your pledges to one another. May your bond never be broken.
Photo Attribute: Unknown Provenance
Rev. Ann Fuller
The commentary on this blog is my own opinion developed over years of officiating a wide range of wedding sizes and styles. I am always happy to answer any questions you may have.