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Unity Sand Ceremony - A Hot Wedding Trend!

If you've attended many weddings lately, or read trendy magazines or newspapers, you've undoubtedly noticed that the ceremonies are no longer just your Grandmother's and Grandfather's typical church wedding. Read More Below Photo:
Unity Sand Ceremony Pictures, Images and Photos
The Unity Sand Ceremony, a celebration that is usually two to three minutes in length, is a meaningful joining of two lives. In this timeless ritual of marriage, the couple ceremoniously pours various colors of sand from a container, such as a seashell, into one special container symbolizing their coming together as one.

This unique celebration was recently brought into the public eye with the marriage of Trista Rehn and Ryan Sutter of the TV series, "The Bachelorette." Rather than the time-honored ritual of the Unity Candle Ceremony, the famous couple chose the alternative, Unity Sand Ceremony. Their decision has sparked a craze in weddings across the country.

The ceremony has controversial origins, some believing that it began with the Native Americans and some insisting the Hawaiians were the ancestors of the legend. Whatever its origin, the Unity Sand Ceremony is fast becoming a nationwide wedding ceremony trend.

The flowing sand and blending of the colors symbolize the bringing together of two lives into one. Some couples prefer to leave a small amount of sand in their respective container to show that even though they now function as one, they remain individuals.

A staple in marriages everywhere, The Unity Candle Ceremony has long been a tradition for marriages both elaborate and simple. Usually, there is a single candle that both bride and groom light from a flame of their own single candle. Parents or other members of the wedding party often join in the candle lighting ceremony.

The Unity Sand Ceremony can also be altered in many ways to include family and friends. Besides the bride and groom, various colors of sand are given to wedding members who will add their sand to the couple's sand, all flowing into the container, creating a colorful and one-of-a kind symbol of unity.

In an age where couples are planning weddings that are unique to their beliefs and lifestyle, the sand ceremony can be personalized many different ways to fit the occasion. After the ceremony, the couple has a unique keepsake to remember their wedding day.

Hawaii has been a popular destination for weddings since airplanes became the preferred mode of travel. Its mild weather and sandy beaches create a perfect environment for the entire wedding party to be barefoot on the beach while witnessing the Unity Sand Ceremony - a tradition as old and exceptional as the islands themselves.

Not going to have a wedding on a beach? Don't worry. Sand is available online, or the couple can use sand from a destination they've visited or that has a special meaning in their lives. Distinctive containers designed to fit any religion or lifestyle can also be purchased online.

Many couples write their own vows for the ceremony, but passages from ancient Hawaiian or Native American weddings can easily be found on the Internet for the portion of your wedding relating to the Unity Sand Ceremony.

Whatever your dream wedding entails, consider incorporating the Unity Sand Ceremony into the celebration. You'll be sure to create memories that your guests will talk about for a long time to come.

Article Credit: Sharon Vaz

Wedding Trends 2009

Current Wedding Trends

By: Charish
Royal Purple Wedding Reception

In spite of our current economy situation, I have found that engaged couples are finding great ways to be able to still have the wedding of their dreams, without sacrificing quality.
In fact, I find that many couples are planning a more platinum wedding, and simply cutting down the size of their guest list to save on their overall costs.

Here are some trends I’ve observed this year so far:

1. many couples are opting for a wedding venue that accommodates both the wedding ceremony, and the reception. This is considered a “green” trend choice as it cuts down on the overall transportation needs for the couple and their guests. This option is also most likely a money saver on overall wedding costs, not to mention a huge timesaving convenience for all.

2. I am seeing a common trend in the guest counts for couples. 75 - 100 guests is quite common right now, which can save the couple a lot of money.
I find it refreshing that couples are beginning to realize, that their wedding does not have to come with an open invitation to everyone that the couple has ever known.
Keeping the guest list strict, and limiting it to only very close friends, and close relatives is perfectly acceptable.

3. Wedding cakes topped with Jewelry Cake Toppers (aka monogram cake toppers). While this is not necessarily a new trend, it appears to be more common this year than
in previous years. One reason may be that couples are choosing cakes with less floral d├ęcor, and going with more smooth fondant hand-painted designs topped with bling, as apposed to the
previously more common butter cream frosted cakes that previous generations favored.

4. Wedding Photography – Today’s couples want a wedding photographer that can and will capture the fun aspects and emotions of their wedding day. Few couples
desire a more traditional wedding photography approach that requires their undivided attention and time to be devoted to looking at the photographer’s lens. While there are still
many couples that want a few traditional family poses for their album, the trend is leaning evermore toward a more carefree, photojournalistic approach.

5. Event Designers – There are more couples leaning toward hiring an “event designer” now than ever. Event designers are not to be confused with wedding consultants however,
and I find that this is often the case. Both are two very different, but important professional services. A true event designer, should offer the majority of his/her products, and services “in house”, which means, little to no outsourcing for things such as party rentals, floral design, lighting, linens, decorating, etc. By hiring a true event designer, couples can save money on their overall costs.

6. Wedding Dresses – Yes, I said wedding dresses. More of today’s brides are choosing a more formal and designer wedding dress for their ceremony, and then changing into a less formal, and more flirtatious wedding dress for the reception and festivities. As for Bridesmaid dresses – more brides are considering dresses that their maids can re-wear to other special functions; therefore simplicity is the current trend.

7. Wedding Videography – The old fashioned wedding video that brides a few years ago were satisfied with, simply won’t do for today’s bride and groom. Couples of today are
looking for talented video cinematographers. Products from these masters of emotion, should have a movie-like feel and sound to them, that will make the couple re-live, and re-feel
their day as if it was happening all over again, , , ,and without feeling the need to push the “skip” button to get to the good parts.

8. Style – From over the top bling, bling, or as rustic as you can get, are hot trends right now. Many brides and grooms are choosing extreme themes, styles, and or colors for their
special day’s look. The goal appears to be, to wow the guests, and show them the best time of their lives. More emphasis is being placed on the personalization of the couple’s wedding day. For example: One groom who was a Dentist, decided that the party favors should be tooth brushes, with a small candy filled sash tied to each one. This was not only a personalized memento from the groom and his bride, but an expression that a Dentist can have a sense of humor too. HOT COLORS: I expect to see chocolate brown as a base color as in the past combined with bright colors. We will see a lot of silver, and royal purple. Also gray (charcoal gray) as a base color is expected to be hot this year, but combined with more lively colors to kick it up a notch. Candles, candles, and more candles! Expect to see a lot of candles at the reception. Couples are shooting for a romantic feel, and nothing says romantic better than a lot of candle light. Choose bee wax candles for a more "green", earth friendly choice!

Happy Wedding Planning!

Wedding Planning Stress Busters

Wedding Planning Stress Busters
by: Georgina Clatworthy

Stressed Bride
Finding ways to relieve the stress when all the wedding stuff begins to wear you down can be just as stressful! Here are some tips to help you put together a stress busting plan for when it all gets too much.

Weddings can seem like an endless charade of flowers, stationery and cakes and sometimes you are probably left wondering when it will all end. Act now and draw yourself up a stress busting plan to help you get through all those wedding planning nightmares.

Take time out

When the pressure is really on the best thing to do is to get away from it all for a while. Grab you hubby-to-be and get away for a weekend and have some quality time together. It will help you both focus on the time ahead and help you remember exactly why you are getting married in the first place!

Massage in a bottle

A massage is the ultimate for relaxation and unwinding. Book one when everything seems to be getting on top of you and you need time out. Make a day of it at a nearby spa & take your mom and best friend with you.

Switch off

A total switch off from everything wedding related is on the cards when you find yourself eating, sleeping and thinking weddings 24/7. By this stage you are probably super-stressed and taking a whole day out from all things wedding will be just the tonic you need.

Work it out

If you are keen on exercise and have a regular workout or exercise regime you are probably already aware of the stress relieving benefits of simply going for a run or having a workout at the gym. A good workout will not only help burn calories, but it will also stretch your tense muscles and release feel good endorphins.

Sleep it off

Although it may not be so easy, but a good sleep will leave you feeling refreshed, energized and ready to face the day. Try to get 8 hours a night and avoid all wedding talk when you snuggle down for the night. If wedding plans do float around your mind at night, write them down and tell yourself you will deal with them in the morning.

Girl talk

Get all you friends together, a bottle of wine and a strict ban on wedding talk. A bit of girly gossip will help you relax and calm down. A night in with the girls will also help you remember that there is life outside of weddings, so find out what is going on with them and their lives.

Eat properly

We are all too aware of the importance of eating a balanced diet but many of us, particularly when stressed will skip meals and take to consuming things which won’t help us in any way. Try to drink lots of water, eat plenty of fruit and vegetable and avoid caffeine and too much alcohol. You will soon feel fresher and notice a change in your everyday mood.