by: Michael Kabel
During the wedding ceremony, a lighted candle represents the bond between two people, the enduring flame shining as an example to others. Such symbols have for thousands of years been part of the marriage ritual, and are found across virtually all cultures. The use of tapers – slim, individual candles – to light a single unity candles is also a popular ritual, and retailers are beginning to stock such items in a variety of shapes and themes.
Modern wedding candles often reflect something important to the couple’s values. For example, at one recent wedding, a couple with Irish heritage chose to light a unity candle with an Irish wedding blessing inscribed on its side. At another, a deeply religious man and woman lighted a candle with a verse from the book of Corinthians printed along its stem. The verse included special words about the joining of man and woman, words they felt especially pertinent to their faith and marriage.
In wedding receptions, candles are increasingly popular as wedding favors, given to guests as a kind of symbolic thank you and reproduction of the ceremony’s significance. With the gift of a candle, guests feel part of the ceremony and take their favor away as a kind of souvenir of the reception itself. There are several different kinds of candles used as favors available. One recent trend is giving a candle personalized with the couple’s name and the date of the ceremony on the base or stem. Another is giving candles shaped like wedding elements – a wedding cake candle, for example, or candles shaped like coffee cups and saucers.
Candles might also highlight an event’s theme. Receptions with a beach theme might order candles with seashell decorations; fall-themed weddings might include gel candles with leaves pressed inside. One couple, whose groom was a career Navy officer, gave candles with sculpted anchors to each of their guests. The candles were lit at the beginning at the dinner, and flooded the reception hall with quiet elegance.
Some experts point to the recent popularity of candles as a resurgence in attention to tradition. “People ask for candles, because they want that classic touch of elegance,” one Atlanta-based wedding planner said. “You hear about a candlelit dinner, it impresses immediately. I think, especially for larger receptions, the candles encourage a sense of intimacy that maybe you wouldn’t otherwise have in a room full of people. It’s hard to find fault with the sight of dozens of candles burning, anyway.”
There are candles available for any number of themes, and most are reasonably priced and can be ordered in volume.
My Wedding Favors.com has a complete selection of both unity candles and candle favors, many of which may be personalized and order in volume. For a complete listing of the company’s products, please visit their website here: www.myweddingfavors.com.