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5 Weird Unity Ceremony Ideas for Truly Unique Weddings

Published Tuesday, Oct. 25th, 2022


Looking for a delightfully weird wedding tradition? We’ve got you!

 

 

 

Ok, we’ve all seen lists of ‘unique unity rituals’ and ‘alternative unity ceremonies’ online these days, written for couples in search of creative ways to celebrate a non-traditional wedding ceremony.

 

But let’s face it… Although a tree planting ceremony and  burying a bottle of bourbon are less common traditions than, say, lighting a unity candle or the ever-popular sand ceremony, they aren’t all that unusual. 

 

If you’re looking for ideas that are truly out of the ordinary, even downright weird, check out the list below. These are sure to surprise even your most skeptical guests, and leave friends and family talking about your ceremony for years to come. As a wise man once said: 

 

 

“We’re all a little weird. And life is a little weird. And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall into mutually satisfying weirdness – and call it love – true love.” (often attributed to Dr. Suess, this popular quote about love is by Robert Fulghum)

 


We’re all a little weird – Embrace it! 

 


Next, ask a friend or relative to get ordained online to officiate your one-of-a-kind wedding.

 

 

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5 Weird & Unique Unity Ceremony Ideas


 

1. Hair wreath 

 

Make a decorative wreath with strands of hair from every guest that attends your wedding ceremony. 

 

These shiny strands should be offered voluntarily (so put the scissors down), and can be brushed and coaxed into a stylish braided band to hang prominently in your home for years to come. 

 

But be aware, you won’t be the first couple to capture the memory of the day in this unusual way. This artistic tradition has been popular since the Victorian era, and similar wedding hair wreaths are on display in museums around the world, including Leila's Hair Museum, in Independence, Missouri, and the Mütter Museum Woven Strands exhibition in Philadelphia.

 

 

A framed Victorian hair wreath from the museum collection in Hardin County, Ohio

Locks of love: Hair art was incredibly popular in the Victorian Era, from the 1830s until the early 1900s. Photo via "The Art of Hair Wreaths", Hardin County Historical Museums

 


2. Dunk tank ‘I do’s

 

For a literal spin on ‘take the plunge,’ consider a carnival-style dunk tank unity ceremony.

 

This unexpected ritual is sure to lead to lots of laughs, and gets all your loved ones involved – as cousins, kids, siblings, and friends take turns trying to dunk you! Get dunked with your sweetheart, or take turns ‘plunging’ into marriage.

 

Don’t want to rent a dunk tank? Take the DIY approach at your local swimming pool!

 

To see a dunk tank wedding in action, watch this daring couple make a splash on their wedding day at around the 5 minute mark.

 

 

Screenshot from the YouTube video, Dunk Tank Wedding, showing the bride climbing out of the tank in her wet wedding dress while the groom watches, both are smiling and laughing happily

Screenshot from one happy couple's "Dunk Tank Wedding" video

 


3. “I vant to suck your blood…”

 

Celebrate your undying love with a deliciously macabre (fake) blood toast.

 

Any vampire enthusiasts out there? Whether your wedding theme is Gothic Glam, Vamps & Velvet, or simply a tastefully offbeat nod to classic supernatural horror films, a crimson-hued blood toast is the perfect way to remind guests that true love is immortal… 


Try this recipe to make your own realistic and deliciously drinkable fake blood.

 

Related:  A Wine Blending Ceremony Sample Script

 

 

Fake blood in a skull shaped bottle and wine glass, with candy wrapped in foil on the table to look like eyeballs

This crimson unity toast is perfect for offbeat Valentine's Day or Halloween wedding themes, too

 


4. A fiery leap of love and faith

 

Jump over a bonfire built by your friends and family members to ensure your love’s flame burns eternal.

 

This unity ritual isn’t exactly weird, and it’s definitely not new: Couples have been jumping over bonfires at weddings for centuries, and as part of several different cultural traditions. Of these, the Pagan wedding ritual is probably the best known. But despite its long history, this tradition will still come as a surprise to most of your guests.

 

Ask guests to help stack the wood for the bonfire before the ceremony begins. Then, with the help of your wedding officiant, light the fire at the start of the ceremony, and hold hands as you leap over it following your wedding vows. 

 

For more bonfire wedding inspiration, check out this article on planning a Beltane-inspired wedding ceremony to celebrate May Day, halfway between the Spring Equinox and Summer Solstice.

 

 

A Pagan couple celebrate their wedding outdoors, standing in front of a small bonfire with trees in the background, they are holding a handfasting cloth

Couples around the world celebrate marriage with a leap over a bonfire. The Pagan couple above, wearing symbolic colors of red and white, hold a handfasting cloth as they stand in front of the ceremonial fire.  

 


5. Create a distraction and sneak away

 

Sneak out after the pronouncement…

 

If you really want to give your nosey Uncle Nico something to buzz about, consider leaving the wedding ceremony in a shroud of mystery… But be warned, this move might upset guests who don’t see the humor in it.

 

Related: Who's Laughing Now? – How to Use Humor in the Wedding Ceremony

 

With the help of your wedding officiant, create a distraction to direct everyone’s attention elsewhere at the end of the ceremony. Then, while no one’s watching, sneak out the side door with your sweetheart! (Don’t worry, you can rejoin the celebration at the reception if you want to.)

 

This prank is a fun twist on a Venezuelan wedding tradition, when a couple sneaks out of their reception without saying goodbye to anyone – a funny ritual that’s said to guarantee good luck in marriage.


 

A young couple run down a beach in their wedding clothes, laughing and smiling, the bride turns to look back at the groom

Love on the run! 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

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Jessica Levey

Lead Staff Writer & Illustrator

Jessica loves digging into the history and magic of ritual, exploring the connections between people and places, and sharing true stories about love and commitment. She’s an advocate for marriage equality and individuality. When she’s not writing or illustrating for AMM, she enjoys easy hikes, fantasy novels, comics, and traveling.

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