Naming Ceremony Symbolic Gestures

Your Naming ceremony will be personal and meaningful to your family regardless of what elements you choose to have as part of your ceremony. This guide will give you lots of naming ceremony ideas for your family’s special day. Here are some of the most popular symbolic gestures and you are, of course, welcome to come up with your own ideas too.

Sand Ceremony

Sand ceremonies are used to symbolize union. To formalise the promises you make you can choose to do a sand ceremony. The unique colours of sand represent each individuals’ unique qualities, and adding the sand to the jar represents their love and commitment to your child. This can include parents, grandparents, guide parents, friends and family –the choice is yours. The sand combined creates a lovely keepsake for your child and a momento of all of the support they will have in their life.

Hand, foot or finger prints

As part of the ceremony the baby/child hand and foot prints are made as a keepsake of the happy occasion. This can be done with paints or modelling clay. You can then date these, and many families will frame them as a memento of the day.

Family Handfasting

Handfasting, hand tying or ‘tying the knot’ is an ancient Celtic marriage ritual. The celebrant ties ribbons around your joined hands as a way of confirming your union. A family handfasting can be done in a naming ceremony, and involve your family members. You can choose different colour/patterned ribbons to represent the people involved.

Memory Box

Parents can choose to create a memory box as part of the ceremony. It’s entirely up to you what you would like to include – memories/toys so far, a newspaper from the date of the naming/date of birth or a gift from a sibling. You can even let your guests know on the invitation, and ask them to bring something. The box is then kept to open on a significant date in the future (often an important birthday, or even on their wedding day).