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Dave Miller Weddings - 973-896-7905

Hand Fastings - Tie The Knot 973-896-7905


When you work with Reverend Dave Miller, every ceremony ritual is optional and customizable. The Hand Fasting ritual is something different that few brides have heard of. After seeing it demonstrated or reading this page, most brides want to include it in their ceremony. For that reason, it is always talked about and/or demonstrated at the first meeting.

Since the bride and groom will remain tied up after the Hand Fasting, it is done very near the end of the ceremony. The only rituals that come after it are the proclamation (By the power vested in me...), and the presentation (Ladies and gentlemen, may I present Mr. and Mrs. ________).

The bride & groom should already be facing their guests. As is Reverend Dave's preference, the bride and groom face each other or their guests for every part of the ceremony, except the very first opening remarks.

Facing their guests, the Hand Fasting begins with the bride and groom putting their inner arms together, outstretched. Someone, usually the Maid/Matron of Honor, takes the first rope, wraps their wrists, and gives them the free ends. The bride & groom must tie themselves together.

As they begin to tie the knot, Reverend Dave tells the guests what is going on: "Ladies and gentlemen, their first task as husband and wife, is a test of teamwork. _____ and _____ are to tie one arm together using only their free arm.

" 'Hand Fasting' is a tradition that dates back at least to the early 1500's, from Scotland, although there is some evidence that it has older and more diverse origins. Many believe this ritual is the origin of the wedding term 'Tie the Knot.' "

Click on any of the small photos to see the full size photo.

The Hand Fasting ropes Reverend Dave uses consist of a white and gold braided rope and are about 5' long.


The fringes use four to six random wedding theme ribbons. They are assembled by hand and are about 6" long.


Here, the bride and groom are using their free hand to tie the knot. At the same time, Reverend Dave is informing the guests about the origins of this unique wedding tradition.


Having completed the task of tying the knot, the wedding guests are invited to take a ribbon and tie it anywhere on either of them. Some guests will even tie both of them together - and not just their already tied arms!


This bride originally wanted only the single rope that they tie themselves. Before the ceremony, she privately told Dave that she changed her mind, and wanted to include the guests. But she asked to let it be a surprise for the groom.

Boy did he enjoy that surprise!


Since it becomes harder to move once tied up, the Hand Fasting is near the end of the ceremony, but after the first kiss. Here's the happy couple, sharing their second married kiss.

Isn't that a great photo?


Typically, the bride and groom will be cut loose after the recessional, when they exit the room, or when they pass the last row of seats.

Scissors are provided to the mothers (or some other VIP) for this honor. Only the guest ribbons are cut. The first rope is carefully slipped off, with the knot intact. The ribbons and the rope then become souvenirs, ready for display at home.


This couple braided their own rope to be used for the Hand Fasting.

It is this couple's Thank You card that is prominently displayed on the home page, as well as right here:


They wanted a casual ceremony in the same location where they first fell in love - on the beach in Atlantic City. Because this was a destination wedding, very few of their friends or family were able to attend.

To compensate, the people who happened to be on the beach were asked if they wanted to participate. Many of the people in this photo are the innocent bystanders who became the couple's newest temporary friends! During the Hand Fasting, they too joined in.

This photo was actually taken a few minutes before the photo above. It was added to this page because the of the destination setting, and because the bride loved Dave's idea of inviting the people that happened to be on the beach to be part of their ceremony.

  Reverend Dave Miller
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