Main Image by: Vicky Dubois Photography
It seems goth weddings are popular with many choosing a goth wedding theme or décor. Facebook groups are full of images of goth weddings and brides wearing black dresses. (It is important to know the difference as a black wedding dress doesn’t automatically deem it to be a goth wedding any more than a white wedding dress means it’s a traditional wedding).
If a wedding is a goth wedding, it is because those the ceremony is for define their selves as goths and want a wedding which celebrates their lifestyle choices.
What is a Goth Wedding
Goth and gothic weddings are just like any other weddings; two people in love, wishing to take part in a ceremony, vowing to spend the rest of their lives together, but there is a slight difference. The difference is goth is a subculture, a music scene, a genre of fashion and a lifestyle choice which is an important aspect of inclusion within a goth wedding ceremony.
Gothic takes its name from a literary period of dark romanticism; it is also a style of architecture and design.
Do You Have a Theme For Your Goth Wedding?
How will your goth wedding be designed? Will the theme be the two of you or will it be a specific theme you have chosen? Tim Burton weddings are a theme of their own and not all goth clients want this theme as many non-alternative people believe.
Fancy dress, and vampires are associated with goth weddings, but many want to move away from these cliches as they aren’t for everyone.
Goth weddings are generally romantic, with both partners giving their ideas into the day. Many choose Victorian clothing and décor, some choose Halloween which is the most requested time of the year for goth weddings, especially those held in Whitby.
Goth Weddings in Whitby
Whitby in North Yorkshire has become a place associated with the goth community and a twice annual music and meet up takes place here. The place which inspired Bram Stoker to be the town where his fictional character Count Dracula came ashore. Tate Hill Sands beach in Whitby is the beach the ship named the Demeter ended its last voyage, crew less as Dracula arrived in Whitby.
The haunting and dramatic sight of the ruins of Whitby Abbey on the headland above the beach inspired Stoker as did St Mary’s churchyard at the top of the famous 199 steps. His gothic novel featuring Whitby has brought many people to the town and is perhaps one of the reason goths are associated with Whitby.
Goth weddings in Whitby happen mainly during the twice annual goth festivals in April and Oct. A requested venue is Whitby Abbey which may not always be available and contacting English Heritage who are the custodian of the abbey is required if you are seeking this venue for your ceremony.
Image by: Alternative Images UK
Goth Pagan Weddings and Handfasting Ceremonies
Paganism is the followed religion of many goths, and many couples make their beliefs the centre of their wedding ceremony. Handfasting, mead ceremonies, wine ceremonies and broom jumping are usually included in Pagan and Wiccan wedding ceremonies.
Handfasting is a Pagan wedding custom and cords or ribbons to match a colour scheme or theme can be included. Handfasting is a meaningful and special ceremony binding those the ceremony is for together in a ceremony of intention and eternal unity.
The Difference Between a Marriage Ceremony and a Wedding
Goth weddings like other weddings are a celebration of a union. A marriage is a legally recognised partnership between two people who fit into certain legal criteria to be able to marry within the UK.
A marriage ceremony in England and Wales must take place in a venue which holds a marriage license with a registrar taking the ceremony if it is a non-religious marriage ceremony.
Every goth wedding I create and lead are unconventional personalised celebrations of a relationship without any restrictions on wording or music heard unlike a marriage ceremony. Each one is created because of love not because of a legally recognised agreement.
Goth Celebrant for Goth Weddings
As an experienced and 10 year established goth and alternative wedding and handfasting celebrant, I can help you have the wedding you desire. Unlike a marriage (you can still legally marry in a short ‘no frills’ marriage ceremony if you want to) there aren’t any requirements or restrictions. Giving you the freedom to hold your ceremony in any location licensed or not on a day, and at a time.
What Kind of Goth Wedding do You Want to Have?
Do you want a ceremony which has been written especially for you?
Do you want to write and say vows you have created rather than the same vows others say?
Do you want to be able to choose your own music?
Do you want to have a handfasting ceremony?
Do you want to include your family/friends/children/pets within your ceremony?
Do you want a romantic wedding ceremony?
Do you want an evening candlelit ceremony?
Do you want a beach or woodland ceremony?
Do you want a ceremony held in a castle or a favourite venue?
Do you want an intimate ceremony?
Do you want a well-attended celebration?
Do you want a wedding during Whitby goth festivities?
Do you want the ultimate and memorable goth wedding?
A lot of choices to make but all of them should be your choices. As Dr Seuss said:
Why Fit in When You Were Born to Stand Out?
Your Goth Wedding Ceremony
Your relationship is unique to you, and it should be celebrated and acknowledged in a unique way. All that happens and all that is said during your wedding ceremony should be about you, because of you. No generic wording, no inclusion of ceremony wording found online, no rules of expectation to follow, just all about you.
The celebrant you choose to create this one off ceremony must be right for you and must understand your requirements and make suggestions to enhance your ceremony. It is about you not the celebrant.
Write your own vows as only you know what you mean to each other.
Decide if you want poems or readings said
Choose if you want to sign a certificate
Pick which wedding titles or names you want to be known as or use during the ceremony
Your ceremony is the reason for the day and the most important part of the day.
May your day be dark, joyous, memorable, unique and meaningful.