Ideas for Unity or Memory Candles
The unity candle is a tradition at most weddings. The lighting of the unity candle is meant to signify the joining of the bride and groom as one. Unity candles come in many sizes, shapes and colors. You can purchase them already made, or you can design it yourself for a more customized look. Usually, the unity candle is comprised of three separate candles. Two smaller or thinner candles and a larger or thicker candle placed between them. Most wedding venues have an area for your unity candle but if you are choosing something out of the ordinary you may want to check with your venue to be sure your idea will work. If you are choosing to customize your own unity candle, here are a couple ideas to help you out.
Tradition usually dictates unity candles are white. It is your wedding and you can make your own traditions so think outside the box. Candles now come in all different colors. How about using your wedding colors to help you choose the colors of the candles? You can make all three candles the same color, or you can choose to make the two smaller candles one color and the center candle another color.
You can also decorate the candles. There are products out there that are used to adhere on the outside walls of candles for decorative purposes. If you cannot find those, you may choose other items to decorate the candle like buttons, artificial flowers, ribbons, etc. Use a dab of hot glue or regular white glue to affix your decorations. You can also just melt the wax slightly and press your decoration into it.
Another idea for a candle is a memory candle. These are usually used when a loved one has passed away before the wedding. This candle is can be set somewhere separate from the unity candle and is usually lit right before the ceremony. If it is a member of the brides’ family, like mother or father, then the bride will light the candle after walking down the isle. The same holds true for the groom. This candle can also be personalized with some type of decoration. You might want to think about affixing a photo of the person the candle if it is in memory of. In other words, if it is the mother of the bride, take a photo or photocopy of the mother, cut it out and attach it to the candle. You can also place ribbon or beads around the picture to make it stand out more.
If you really do not care for candles, or the wedding venue does not allow them, you may want to consider sand instead. The premise is the same as for candles. You will need three containers. Your containers can be any color, shape, or size you choose. Fill two containers with sand; they do not have to be completely full. We recommend using two different colors of sand so that it can be seen easily. Again, you have the option of using any color you like.
For either method, candles or sand, the officiant will tell you when you should light the candle or mix the sand. The bride and groom will each take one of the smaller candles (they will already be lit). Then, together the bridal couple will light the larger candle. With sand, the bride and groom will each take a smaller, sand filled container, and then together they will fill the larger container. Both methods are a symbol of two people joining together as one.