Wedding theme – Choosing the right one for you.

If like me, you think a wedding theme is just for those looking to inject avengers into every aspect or turning it into the red wedding from game of thrones, you are mistaken. Whilst many couples do embark on a themed wedding – each to their own – the phrase isn’t exclusively relevant to those film / movie themed weddings. Oh no!

Themes also relate to colour schemes, venue esque vibes / character and more. What I’m trying to say is, every wedding has one, and it’s down to you how you phrase it.

When daydreaming of wedding decor, bridesmaid dresses, band options, food varieties and much much more, theme has a part to play in every.single.aspect. Soooo I’d say nailing or much rather pinpointing that theme early on will save you a lot of hassle in the long run. Trying to rectify or change theme later is much harder and possibly expensive.

But how do we pinpoint or even choose our theme?

There are a lot of different things to consider, weight up and ultimately decide when considering and choosing your wedding theme. Let’s get stuck in shall we?

Read : Wedding trends – dressing your chairs

Time of year?  

The time of year can be a theme in itself. December weddings naturally tend to have a winter feel in decoration, flowers, and attire. Summer weddings tend to have a floral flavour peppered with individual flair. If you really don’t want to theme your wedding, sticking and using the season of your wedding could be a great way to label it.

July is a super popular time to get married, but we used this aspect for some of our theme also. We wanted it to feel like a real summer wedding and included things like food options, flowers and decor to highlight that. Using its of foliage and roses certainly eased the wedding into summer season.

Where are you getting married? Where is your reception? 

Is it a barn? Field? Marquee? Church? Manor? Where ever you are saying your ‘I do’s’ and settling down for your first meal, it will be a great starting point on how you want your theme to compliment your day and venue. Look to your venue and what will look great with your surroundings. Don’t make it too hard for yourself. If country chic is going to be hard to accommodate in a grand manor, re-evaluate what you really want.

Our venue very muck eaked nature. With the ceremony taking place in a boathouse outside surrounded by trees, we decided to use the surroundings as best we could, to encorporate into our theme. We also took inspiration from the house too. Being a 200+ year old house featuring stunning grandeur, we used this to our advantage of creating a classy reception area by using lots of drapery. Decor included lots of foliage, garlands and simple white roses. From this we managed to create a theme that married with our venue and surroundings perfectly.

Read : Wedding trends – Centerpieces

What do you envision from your day? 

Is it a classy affair, or is it a relaxed get together with your nearest and dearest. This is a great indication of the type of theme you want for your day. Having grand candlebara’s and posh white draping may just be out of place if intending a relaxed, rather casual affair. Remember, small details like wedding invites and wedding sites all give indications as to what sort of day you’re hosting. Make sure that resonates by using complimentary themed details. You want to make sure your guests know what they are in for when they arrive.

What do you want to avoid? 

Whether it’s a theme you feel everyone has done, or a look you absolutely hate, it’s a good question to ask yourself to avoid falling into exactly what you don’t want. Disliking a certain object doesn’t mean you avoid a certain theme altogether though. Equally liking a certain material / style doesn’t mean you can’t mix it with other themes.

I really wanted to avoid rustic. I felt lots of weddings we have been to ourselves had lots of rustic themes and items. Although I really loved wood and natural aspects. I managed to marry the classic of white with natural furnishings including burlap and hessian.

Do you want to show your personality?

If you are looking to incorporate your favourite film, era, tv series, football club, sport or anything else that carries a huge theme of colour, decor and more, here is where to do it.

A wedding that carries a distinguished theme certainly gets guests talking and makes your day one of a kind. It’s also a great time to inject so of yours, and your partners personality. Your theme could be subtle, or full blown, featuring in invitations, cake design, decor, favours, suits and more.

If you want to keep your personality a little subtle, this can be done alongside any theme. Including baby photos as table numbers, movie favs as table names, and sports teams as favour inspiration are all great ways to inject personality into your day, without giving them full reign of a theme.

We really had little hints of our personality. The table names were named after F1 tracks, groomsman thank you gifts were handmade painted pint glasses, and music for the wedding breakfast were scores from our favourite film.

Go for colour

If all else fails, consider a colour theme rather that a ascetic theme. Choosing a contrast of your colour as a theme certainly keeps in simple, as well as easy when it comes to choosing deco accents, suit colours and bridesmaid dress shades. You can even extend it into finer details like colour of flowers, table linen colouring and icing on your wedding cake. It’s one of the most popular ways to theme any wedding and understandable why.

Every wedding has a theme, whether it be flower arrangement types, a specific titled theme or movie / tv / sport inspired colourings and details. I would highly advise figuring all this out once you’ve booked your venue and before you consider any decor ideas. A wedding theme will really help you define what you need for your venue and what simply won’t fit into the day. It can even inspire the band you choose, the dj set you consider and the food you serve.

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Quirky Ideas : Planning your Wedding Entertainment

There is a lot of pressure for couples to provide fantastic entertainment for guests, besides some music and food. Jhezze it’s almost like they’re demanding teenagers.

Entertaining guests has grown in popularity, and so have the options on what to include day and night for guests to play, use or get involved in. Many couples seek quirky, imaginative and new ways to wow guests during their special day.

Whether you have a Band or a DJ playing during the evening, having something different and unique is a pretty special addition that is well worth considering shoehorning into your budget.

But what can you consider for your special day? Here’s some fab, quirky ideas for Wedding Entertainment.

Read : Band or Dj : What to consider when planning your wedding entertainment

Mini Golf

Not that common and a pretty unique but well involved idea is Mini Golf. Having this placed on a law within your venue is a great all day entertainment set suitable for all guests, old and young! Your guests will be coming back again and again to play throughout the day!

There are plenty of companies where you can hire 5 hole mini golf sets for anything between £150-£200.

Bouncy Castle

Arguably one of the most popular ideas when it comes to keeping guests occupied would be a bouncy castle. Despite popular belief that bouncy castles are just for kids, wedding bouncy castles offer fun for all guests. With lots of entertainment companies offering Wedding specific castles for hire.

Skittles , Jenga , Chess.

By this I of course mean classic games, over-sized, to create the perfect playground for guests to play and get competitive. Giant Jenga and Skittles are always a great, safe option to entertain guests between ceremony and wedding breakfast, as well as into the night. Plus they can look super cute in pictures!

Caricaturist 

Getting personal with this one. A Caricaturist is a great idea to offer guests a unique take-away from your day. Whilst many guests may have had a caricature before, this one will be unique to your wedding day. The caricaturist can work their way round the guests whilst photos are being taken or into the evening music.

Magic 

Having attended a Wedding that offered magic before the Wedding Breakfast, it offers a great distraction for guests when waiting for food or for photos. With many local magicians offering fantastic acts, it’s a great talking point for many guests and a real intimate entertainment to offer your guests.

Casino 

If you fancy getting a little James Bond esque – this one might just be for you. A spot of poker or a roulette table is a great alternative to those guests that don’t enjoy dancing or fancy a little gamble. Whether inside or out, a casino element to your reception will add some class to your reception entertaining your guests all through the night.

Flash Mob 

It’s the latest FAD to have a flash mob or singing waiters who burst into song mid reception, surprising your guests and adding some fun to the day. If you want your guests to be completely surprised, this is the way to go!

Dance Lessons – Barn Dance 

I’ve been to a barn dance wedding and its a sure fire way to get the majority of guests on the dance floor, or enjoying everyone else muck up the moves. Whether you’re a dancer or not, you will be dragged onto the dance floor and have fun too. Defiantly something to consider.

Fire Pit

If you’re wanting a rustic evening that will encourage your guests to enjoy the grounds, you can do no better than a fire pit and some hay bales. Super relaxed and a quirky alternative. You could even offer some roasted marshmallows and leave a guitar.

There are sooo many other ideas of entertainment that you can incorporate into your day. Whilst you want to keep your guests entertained, bear in mind how much time with guests actually have to utilize and use the entertainment? There is nothing worse than paying for something, that doesn’t get used!

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5 Things all brides should know before Wedding Dress Shopping

It should be the most magical and exciting part of the wedding planning process, and yet for many ( including myself ), it becomes more stressful than imagined. Having been through the process, and having learnt a thing or two from visiting many bridal shops, and trying lots of dresses, I thought I’d share the 5 things all brides need to know before shopping!
Read : How to pick your Wedding Venue

The best time to start shopping is 12-18 months before the big day!

It may be harder than you think to find your perfect dress. And even when you have an idea on what you want, it can be even harder to find something that fits the bill. So starting early is my biggest advice.

I visited many stores over 3 months, but I knew I could relax as I had started early. Dresses can take 6-9 months to come in after ordering too, so it’s worth bearing this in mind.

Most bridal boutiques run on appointments only – book ahead!

Yup. Most bridal shops run on appointment only – which is great news as you mainly get the store to yourself. Make sure to research your bridal stores, the designers they hold and their availability – some can be booked up for weeks at a time.

Be open minded when it comes to design and try everything that takes your fancy

It’s not until you try a style on, that you realise whether you like it, it suits you and it’s something you are comfortable wearing. Whilst I always wanted a fit and flare style, I was surprised on how I did in fact fall in love with the ball gown style too. Take notice of advice from the dress store, and try different styles, even if it’s to eliminate them. This can really help narrow down what you want in a dress.

Most boutiques only carry one size – which is undoubtedly small!

This took me by surprise. I knew I wasn’t the smallest gal, but being a average size 12, I was shocked on some of the stores and how their dresses we only size 6-8! It’s worth noting not all stores are the same ( the store I bought from carried 12,14 &16 sizes ), but most do and it can be terribly off putting when trying to visualise the gown whilst your boobs are up to your neck or your arse is being covered by a make-shift part of fabric.

I would highly advise asking before heading to the store – I started avoiding the ones that only carried sizes that we were way to small!

There will be extra expenditure when it comes to alterations.

Whilst some of you may be lucky, most brides, me included, will need some alterations. This will come at a extra cost, although many bridal boutiques have their own seamstress that will carry these out. Always worth doing your own research too though, as some in house seamstress’ can have pretty high fees!

These are just some of the most important things I learnt on my search for my wedding dress. It is tasking, and sometimes it can feel relentless, but you will find the one – even if you have to head to every store in the local vicinity.

What were your biggest concerns when shopping for your wedding dress? Do you have any advice for women going through the process? As always, share your thoughts in the comment section below!
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Small changes that will save you big money on your wedding

When it comes to a wedding, there is no hiding from the cost it entails. And sometimes it can feel like you’ll never be a bride that only spent a small fortune. As quotes roll in, it’s easy to get anxious over the real cost of one day, and wonder how you’re going to even offer wedding favours, evening food and decorate your wonderful venue.

Whilst we did spend a small fortune on our wedding, we did manage to save big money on scrimping back and making small changes to our purchases to have everything we wanted, in a price tag that worked for us.

So how did we do it? What changes can you make that will get the same outcome for you? Here’s some pretty simple swaps or changes to make that will save you heavily on your budget.
Read : How to pick your Wedding Venue

Save the Date / Invitations : Design your own and Print or choose FREE alternatives

I managed to design and print all my Save the Dates, Wedding Invitations, Will you be my bridesmaid requests and all printables from the day. You don’t have to be a InDesign wiz, or a graphic designer to create your own invitations. Using services like Canva make it super easy to personalise and create something unique and perfect for your wedding.

Here’s some FREE printable wedding stationery pieces to consider.

RSVP : Do it online

RSVP’s are soooo stressful. Especially when many forget or believe they don’t need to RSVP. Switching your RSVP to a online basis it will save on stamps and you’ll instantly get a response – if they respond on time of course!

Decorations : Do It Yourself – Literally

Decor for a wedding can become hugely expensive. Especially when you have multiple vendors in to provide accessories and general dressing up. We had quotes come in at just over £2000.00 for the decorations in our marquee. Thankfully, we managed to do much of it ourselves and outsourced for the bits we couldn’t. We saved a huge amount and gave us some fun bits to do in the lead up.

Make-up : Let the Bridesmaids do their own

Hair and make-up for a wedding is a major aspect, but can be an expensive one too. Whilst I would hate to selfish, Hair and Make-up is more important for a bride moreover bridesmaids. If you’re looking to save some cash consider letting your maids do their own.

Tip : If you can, get your hair and make-up done by someone else. Whilst doing it yourself will save you money, it can be added stress that you don’t need or want on the morning of your big day.

Confetti : Swap or be different

Confetti can be bloody expensive. And some venues ( mine included ) would only allow real petals for environmental reasons. Annoyingly this is the more expensive option – ours cost over £150 for ours. Whilst they are prettier and smell lovely, for some its not viable or you really don’t want to be spending that kind of money on something that will be thrown ( I don’t blame you ).

Good news, there’s lots of alternatives to be had when it comes to confetti shots, and many do look much better in photograpshs.

Bubbles
Balloons
Paper Planes
Sparklers
Twirling Ribbons
Bird Seed
Leaves

If you are set on having real confetti, there are some simple DIY’s that could make it a little cheaper and will be a bit of fun just before the special day.

Cake : Get a relative to make it or go shop bought

I was so lucky to have a talented grandmother who made our 4 tier wedding cake. Scout the family, double check whether any can help create one fr you. Better still, go shop bought. Places like M&S Offer a great range, including connie and colin caterpillar ones!

Favours : Do your own

Wedding favours can get pretty pricey when you consider how many you’re catering for. Cut down the cost by creating your own and bulk buying. Our favours were bulk bought candles, in little glass holders – which we got from eating small puddings every week. We decorated with hessian and lace. All in all it cost roughly £60 and we created 120!

Flowers : Buy from the Supermarket

I’d seen so many brides take to a supermarket a day or so before the wedding and create their bouqets, as well as decoration arrangements and I give them huge credit. Lots of supermarkets have a great range of flowers, all perfect for the big day. Be sure to watch lots of youtube tutorials beforehand so you can perfect it in time!

Music : Hire some speakers and play a personal playlist

Personally we didn’t have a DJ, much rather we had a band, but if you’re in the market for just some banging tunes, why not play them yourself. Hiring the kit, inclduing lights and smoke machine, will be much cheaper than the hire of a DJ. Whats better, you can create your own playlist to go through the evening.

Tip : Why not ask guests for a request with a little option on the RSVP. That way guests will be on the look out for their pick and you’ll get a great variety.

Video : Invite guests to take pictures and videos to post on social media using a hashtag

Whilst may discourage guests to use their phones through the wedding, inviting your guests to be their own videographer and photographer throughout the day may work in your favour. You’ll get a more fly on the wall type video, and will be able to truly see it from the view of your guests.

Hopefully, this has given you a little insight into some of the small changes you can make to save some pretty serious cash for your wedding. There are still plentyyyy of other ideas bouncing around on the web to save some extra cash.

If you want to chat wedding planning, or have any questions, my emails and DMs are always open!

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Band or DJ – What to consider when planning Wedding Entertainment

So you’re coming through planning. Chances are you’ve got your venue secured and save the dates sent!
Caters are sorted and photographer briefed.

Now comes the tricky part of entertainment? There seems to be this unwritten rule of modern weddings that guests need to be entertained – like their a fidgeting toddler.
Lawn games, mini golf, photo-booths, music, magicians, Ice cream vans and even bouncy castles. The possibilities and opportunity to entertain your guests are endless, and costly.

The first and foremost entertainment needed for any wedding, and branded a necessity is the music. What is a party without music? And some say a wedding is just a massive party, so the music has got to be good right?

So that makes a tough decision of whether you hire a Band or a DJ. Some hate DJ’s, and some dislike live music. I’ll take you through a couple of things of what to consider if you’re struggling on what choose for your special day.

Read : 5 Things all brides should know before wedding dress shopping

Who are your guests? 

Silly question really but one to consider. Whilst its not at all about everyone else, you don’t want a rock band if the majority of your guests hate rock and prefer soul. There is nothing worse than paying for music, and no one is even up there dancing.

Consider the age of your guests, and the music that will get them up and moving. Tie it in with music you prefer and you’ll have a happy medium. Bands tend to work better if you are looking at a variety of music of all generations, that can get your mum and Nan up and dancing through the evening.

What atmosphere are you after? 

Whether you are looking for a more relaxed evening of slow dances and swaying, or a jump around 90’s disco feel, will all depend on the best option for music. DJ’s tend to be more suited if you really want to vary the music, suit all tastes, and even let your quests choose some tracks.

Bands work much better if you want a upbeat and everyone involved atmosphere. Bands can play music new and old but guaranteed to suit all tastes. They can also create a atmosphere where music is more of a focus, with in between sets a break for guests and the band!

Budget? 

And of course its cost. DJ’s tend to be cheaper, and can cover the music you want much more easily than that of a band. Tight on budget and a DJ is the way to go. Want to splurge a little, than consider seriously the atmosphere a live band can create. Find a band that will cover a variant of music to suit all tastes, including your own, and you’ll be sorted.

Read : Small changes that will save you big money on your wedding

There is never a wrong decision when it comes to your music. It’s all dependent on Budget and atmosphere of the day. It’s always nice to have a live band, who can play music in between sets, to have a best of both worlds. Of course, a DJ is much less hassle, and you can have more control over performance and track list. You could even do your own playlist and avoid hiring someone in all together.

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10 Things to do as soon as you’re Engaged!

Congratulations – exciting times lie ahead as you plan and have the biggest day of your life : Your wedding day! As I reach my 1st year of being married, I often become envious of those just getting engaged. Whilst it can get stressy ( no denying it here ), there is so much to be excited for.

But where should you start?

There are so many things to get your head around when you first get engaged. For you to take full advantage of the first couple of months, and steady the stress, here’s a bunch of things to do, as soon as you’re engaged. Remember, these may take a couple of months but it will certainly make you feel on top of the post engagement buzz.

Read : A Quick peak into our wedding day

Celebrate

Whilst it’s real easy to get straight to it ( boy I was checking my wedding pinterest board within hours of putting the ring on ), its important to celebrate it too. Whether you both head out for a posh dinner, gather friends for a party or even head away to truly enjoy each other, celebrate one way or another. You may regret it otherwise.

Some quick engagement celebration ideas :

Host a party – Whether it be in your garden, at you local pub or even as a gorgeous venue.
Gather the girls and hit the town.
Weekend away – It can be a whirlwind with family and friends. Seek some refuge away, together.
Meal out – sometimes intimate is better. A local meal is always a lovely way to get everyone together.

Don’t Panic

Yes, don’t panic. Right about here, after toasting our happiness, I started to panic about budget, cost, where, when and more. This is not the time to panic. Everything is just at the start and you have plenty of time to work out all those other things. There really is no rush.

Identify your wishes

It’s real important to know what you want early. Whilst you won’t necessarily be able to have it all, its good to know the key aspects : Church or venue for the ceremony? Intimate or the more the merrier? Local or abroad? These key indicators will help early on establishing what wedding you are looking to have, and must have pointers for food, venue ect.

Key questions to ask yourself here :

In the UK or abroad? ( Do you want certain guests there that may not be able to travel? )
Ceremony venue ? Church, venue, registry office.
Small or large attendance ?
Venue type ( Marquee, house, rustic, barn? )
Accommodation ( Do you want guests to stay over after? )
Certain time of the year you want to marry?
Weekend or weekday ( Some venues are cheaper on a weekday! )

Jot down a rough guest list

Now is the right time to sit down and create a rough guest list. I say rough because there will no doubt be adds and minus’ as you further progress through the planning stages. Creating this rough number of guests is real important when searching for potential venues. Without knowing this number, you may risk falling in love with somewhere too big, or even small!

Research & Enquire

Okay, so you have a rough idea of what venue you want and the number of guests. Now’s the time to research and enquire. When I was at this stage, I spoke to and acquired every brochure for venues in a 25mile radius. Yes, honestly.

My biggest advice is get info from every venue that ticks some of the boxes, even if it’s just one box it ticks. Some venues have shoddy websites, not many pictures and can look pretty nasty, but appearances can be deceiving.

Here’s some ways to really research a venue :

Use Instagram – Instagram geo-location and check our the latest snaps. It’s real interesting to see guest snaps and can give you a real insight to the venue.
Check Facebook – As many venues tend to update and use their Facebook pages more than their own website.

Establish a budget

After all these steps, you’ll be at a great stage to establish a budget. You may be lucky enough to get some help from family, or you may have decided you want a rather long-ish engagement ( to give you enough time to save, or there’s a special year you want to marry ). Having made these decisions, you now have all the pieces you need to realistically conjure a viable budget.

I would highly advise creating or using a budget list. This is a great way to manage your wedding budget.
View the FREE one I created here.

Be Realistic

As with anything, you really shouldn’t tease yourself with things that are out of reach. Wedding’s really are as expensive as you make them. There are factors within a wedding that you can save money, and other areas you just can’t help but spend on ( venue costs and legal fees aren’t things to negotiate ).

Create a viewing list

You are now aware of local venues and their prices. This of course has a huge impact on what you can actually book and what is viable for you. Knock out those venues that are unrealistic and create a pile of want to view. Remember, whilst on paper they may not look like the perfect place, viewing a venue is a fantastic way to truly feel and explore a venue. You will be surprised and some of those ‘compromises’ may not be when you actually see and view a venue.

When I was looking for a venue, we had a set of key aspects to consider ( one venue for ceremony and wedding breakfast, ability to stay on site, marquee for the reception, outside ceremony area ). One venue kept arising on research and their website was shocking. We booked a viewing anyway and instantly fell in love. We didn’t see a single other venue and booked that day.

View Venues

The whole post engagement period can feel daunting, partly because it can feel like you don’t have a grip on the start of the wedding planning process. Whether you start to view venues within a couple of weeks or within a couple of months, it can ease the anxiety of wondering where and when your wedding could be.

The key to viewing venues is to have pre-arranged questions to ask, and take pictures. When viewing venues it can be easy to forget aspects so jotting down notes and taking pictures can help jig your memory later.

Once you’ve viewed the venues you shortlisted, create a pro and con list if you’re struggling to decide. Revert back to that wishlist too. If a venue limits some of those wishes being a reality, consider this a compromise and whether it’s one you can bear to make.

Remember : Every venue won’t be perfect. But, when it comes to decorations and smaller details, remember that lots can be done cosmetically to change the look and feel for a venue. Every bride has a different vision and yours can truly change the look of your venue from that stark first impression you get when viewing on a Sunday afternoon.

Read : How to pick your Wedding Venue

Book a date

Chances are you’ve made your shortlist and chosen a venue – wahoo. You may want to re-visit or bring some extra eyes to make the final decision. But you’ve got the venue sorted. Now it’s time to book. Securing that date is the last in this post-engagement planning. Once that date is secured you can breathe knowing you have a date to work towards. If you are needing to book a Church / Ceremony venue and reception venue, be sure to liaise with both to establish a date that will work.

You’ve now reached a time in wedding planning where you can actually relax a little. The date is booked, and you know how much money you have to save and spend and you roughly know who you are inviting. The next stages are pretty straight forward and need be stressful or rushed ( unless you’ve decided to get married in like 9 months which means go and read my next post pronto – you have planning to crack on with ).


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Wedding Trends to consider : Centerpieces

Just like your home, Wedding’s go through various waves of trends and styles. Just look at your parents wedding and the puffy sleeves and tiaras for a little insight into previous trends and styles.

When planning your own special day, you will of course be looking at current and upcoming trends to incorporate into your spread. There will of course be some that you can’t avoid ( wedding dresses being one ) but many that you can handpick and make work for your day.

Centerpieces are a huge part of Wedding Decor and once again, something that swaps and changes with the wave of wedding trends. So what should you consider as the centerpiece of every table? Here’s some stunning ideas suitable for any wedding theme.

Read : Quirky ideas : Planning your wedding entertainment

Foliage and blooms

Is there anything more romantic than foliage and flowers used in centerpieces? The trend to have these as a centerpiece is forever strong, but there are plenty of ways to display these, other than in a simple vase. Here are a variety of ways to use this trend as your centerpiece.

Low level

One of the most popular options as it offers guests the perfect space to converse across the table and isn’t too imposing neither. With lots of options including gorgeous eucalyptus and vibrant blooms, this is certainly a safe option when it comes to decorating your tables.

Other ideas for low level centerpieces include using lanterns or candle holders. These are great ideas especially if wanting to add light to the table as well as a cosy, intimate feeling. If candles are banned in your venue, consider using electronic candles, which benefit from being only a click to turn on item!

Tall and appealing

Tall Centerpieces are a personal fav of mine. The create stunning space and decor high above and fill space that usually would be bare. They especially work when in high, open spaces like marquees and village halls. With many tall centerpieces, they can get in the way of guests conversing so do bare in mind if considering.

If you don’t want to clutter up the space too much, consider only having them present on select tables and have the other tables featuring low level, small centerpieces.

For Long tables

Many couples tend to avoid long tables as it’s often advised that it stops guests from conversing as they have limited guests surrounding them. Although, long tables can look very pretty, and allow many guests to be seated in a small area. If you are wondering the best decor for long tables it has to be long foliage littered with blooms of flowers. It leaves tables open but perfectly decorates the space.

There are so many different centerpiece ideas to consider – and I know it can be overwhelming. My key advice is to find a style that works with your venue, style and budget and stick with it. You could be forever changing your mind otherwise!

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How to Pick your Wedding venue

Its probably the biggest decision of the whole wedding, and yet, depending on your time limit, its one that you might have to make fairly sharpish. It’s common for many to be booked up well in advance. And if they are a popular venue ,they’ll possibly going to be pricey too. Yes, picking your wedding venue is a big deal, but its achievable and with a little vision, any venue can look perfect.

I made my decision on our wedding venue pretty sharpish Whilst I would no way say I know everything when it comes to choosing your perfect venue, I managed to book mine within a month of looking. It can be so easy to get bogged down, worried and freak out about never finding the perfect place, but you just have to be prepared.

To help streamline the whole experience for your, here’s my top tips for picking your wedding venue.

Read : 10 Things to do As soon as you’re engaged

Have a criteria

You want your venue to fall within. Whether you want a lawn big enough for a marquee, accommodation on site for guests or all within a manor house. Know what you want your venue to offer on your big day, and bare that in mind when researching venues.

Search venues

Within a 10 mile radius of your ideal location. For me, this was home. I knew there would be some guests travelling down to my home town, and I wouldn’t want it to be any further than 10 miles from home or place of stay for those guests. Whether you have a church you would like to marry in, or a location for wedding shots, base your radius within a reasonable distance from them. You really don’t want your second location or only location a far distance away, this can really impact on your day and guest attendance.

Print brochures & prices

For any venue within that radius. Gather as much information as you can on those venues without having to go and see them. You don’t want to dedicate too much time visiting venues that aren’t suitable or that don’t match your criteria, so its vital this info is obtained before viewing. Slim your to view list down to those that match your every need and are in budget. Remember your budget!

Write down anything you want to know and what could sway your decision.

Can you have real candles? When can you get in to decorate? Do you have to use their recommended suppliers? When is the full payment required? These are all really valuable questions that could sway your decision. Knowing these upfront can save you a lot of time.

Don’t take too many people to look at the venue.

Too many opinions can shadow your own opinion and really cloud your view. The venue is something you and your partner only can make a decision on. It is good to have other opinions, but too many can spoil the pie as they say.

View one venue at a time

And don’t over book yourself. Just like viewing a property, you need as much time as possible to get a feel for the venue and ask as many questions as you can. Don’t rush yourself and take your time wandering around. Make notes and take pictures if possible. These will come in handy when thinking back to that venue to compare.

Ask as many questions as you can 

And don’t worry if you forgot some. Take a contact email, or chances are you already have one, to send over any further queries you may have. Don’t be shy if you think your question may be obvious or silly. You need to make sure you have the right info to make a informed decision.

View again before you make a decision.

Viewing a venue for the second time is always a good eye opener on some of those small details you may have missed on the first viewing. Again take your time and note down anything you may have missed before hand. You’ll have a better idea this time around on what you would like so think about some of your ideas as you look round. Is there anything you’re going to have to change or compromise on. Make sure its really what you want.

You’ll know when you have found the one.

Heck I only viewed one and it was just perfect. I did so much research before hand and my criteria narrowed down suitable venues so much, it was my venue or another. We knew what we wanted and we found it without having to view many venues which was perfect. Its just like your dress, once you know you know and you won’t imagine getting married any where else.

Choosing your venue can be exciting but worrying and that is normal. But once you have found your feet and researched as much as you can, you will soon realise what is obtainable and it will get oh so exciting. Take you time and above all enjoy yourself.

– Pin it for later –

A Quick peak into our Wedding

It seems I say this a lot as of late, buttttt if you follow me on the gram ( link here if you don’t ), you’d know after a short poll and 100% voting for yes, I started to post more snaps from my wedding day.

I was a little sceptical since I have been banging on about it for well over a year, I thought you may have already had enough. Apparently not, and that makes me ever so happy! After another quick poll, 90% voted for a quick post on my wedding, so here we are.

There seems to be rather a lot to cover from the day, and so after much deliberation, I will be conducting a week worth of posts on everything ‘Peters’ wedding 2018. I found when planning ours, there wasn’t too many local resources and I found some great suppliers that don’t seem to get enough credit. With that in mind, I will be also publishing a full list of suppliers we used – mega useful hopefully for East Sussex Brides.

Read : Koh Samui – Thailand’s Paradise Island

So the day in a nutshell….

I will be biased and say it was honestly the best day ever. Everything turned out just as planned (kinda), although the blistering heat did cause a couple of dramas and changes. Just about everyone turned up ( there is always one, despite thinking there won’t be ), and everyone seemed to have as good time as us, if not better! Although I have never sweated as much as I did that day, I literally had the best day possible, and wouldn’t change anything for the world!

What were you most nervous for?

On the lead up, pretty much everything. I was so worried everything would pull through or work. On the day before, once we had set up the venue, I felt far more relaxed. Yet, I was sooo surprised on how nervous I was for the ceremony. I still recall the sicky feeling I had for several hours before. I was trying to calm myself with rich tea fingers. It didn’t really help. It all disappeared when we walked down the aisle and I saw my fiancée!

What was the best part?

Ooooo, there were sooo many moments. The best part has to be the evening reception. It was so relaxed and we were literally surrounded by friends and family. It was so nice to be able to mingle and dance and overall enjoy the coming together of everyone we loved! I don’t think I could honestly say there was a best part though, it was fantastic through and through!

Anything you don’t remember?

The only thing was the actual ceremony. My adrenaline was in over drive and I was so nervous and worried I looked horrible and sweaty! I do remember just giggling and being the happiest I have ever been! It’s not that I don’t remember It, it’s just certainly blurry compared to the rest of the day!

How do you feel now it’s over?

I’ve been asked this quiet a lot as it’s assumed I would be all blue. And I didn’t not feel sad, but it was more so because me and my new husband spent so much time together just us, exploring and experiencing, it was sad to come back home to normality.

I don’t feel sad the wedding over because I literally had the best day and have the fondest memories to keep. We have some stunning snaps and awaiting our fantastic video in which we can reminisce and relive the entire day again and again.

We literally have soooo much to look forward to and work towards, I am just so excited for our future and the start of our life as husband and wife.

What would your advice be?

I have sooo much to say, you can bet your bottom dollar I will post an entire piece on this, but overall, just enjoy it. The planning can get stressy, and something’s won’t go to plan but just ride the rollercoaster. You will not be doing it again and it will totally be worth the stress and tears!

These are just some of the beautiful snaps caught by guests during the day. We have received our gallery from our photographer and currently in awe at the gorgeous range of pictures we have to choose from. I honestly have noooo idea how we will choose!

There will be more wedding natter coming, but if there is something you would like me to cover in particular, please do let me know!

Charlotte x

What I am packing for my wedding morning.


I have just one week and one day until my wedding. And boy has it been a long time coming. If you have been a frequent follower of my blog, thank you for sticking by. Unfortunately, there is still plenty of wedding content to come because I still have so much to share in the coming weeks, before and after the day!


So on to packing. Because yeah, I am packing. Packing for my honeymoon, packing for the wedding venue and packing for the wedding morning. There is sooo much to consider and organise in these final days that my mind sizzles.

So onto the second of many for these. What I’m packing for my wedding morning.

The day before the wedding we will be getting the venue ready. Following the set-up, me and my fiancée will part and I will spend the evening at my parents with my bridesmaids. I will be heading off to the venue on the morning of the wedding to get ready.

There isn’t much to go on in the world of the web, so hopefully this will give some guidance to some of those fellow bride to be’s out there struggling.

Read : The skincare I’m taking on Honeymoon!

Breakfast

It’s one of the most important meals of the day, even on your wedding morning! Despite probably not wanting to eat too much due to nerves, I will most certainly be packing breakfast snacks and grabs. I can’t imagine anything worse than not eating the morning of, especially with the flow of Prosecco! I have recently been craving fresh fruit and juice, so that is a must for the wedding morning.

Robe

Am I even getting ready with my girls if there isn’t a utterly divine robe to wear? It’s something that is mega popular to have when getting ready with the girls, so it was one of the first things I bought. I managed to find some gorgeous robes for me and my girls off Ebay at a really reasonable price. We all have different colours, so I am excited for us all to wear them whilst sipping champagne!

Nail Varnish

Here comes the little iddy bits that I would have forgot, if I allowed myself. I really don’t want to be painting my nails too early, encase of chips from dressing the venue, or general wear and tear. Whilst I am having acrylics on my fingernails, I will get one of my hens to quickly paint my toes, so some nail varnish is a must!

Perfume

This is something that I have been thinking about for a while. The perfect scent to wear on the day. I love it when a certain scent takes you back to a time and that’s what I want for my perfume. I am still yet to find the perfect scent, and chances are it will be a real last minute nab, but I am eager to get something that I have never worn and will forever remind me of the day!

Jewellery

I cannot forget this! Whilst the dress and veil is the most important part, jewellery just finishes it off! I have some gorgeous pieces of my own, and borrowed that I will be wearing on the day that compliment my dress perfectly. I must just remember them!

Tauc Powder 

I have been eyeing up the weather for a while and today it’s actually showing up on my phone! It’s going to be warm by the looks of things and honestly, I do not want chub rub under my dress. I have been told tauc powder is the best remedy, so I will have plenty encase it’s just a little too warm!

Bridesmaid Prezzies

You can’t forget the thank you gifts! I have previously mentioned the gifts I have been gathering for my girls, and I am so excited to share it with them, and you in a forthcoming post. Alas, I will say no more, other than I am so happy with how they have turned out!

Other than the bridesmaids, we have gifts for our parents and the grooms-man, as well as other helpers, that we cannot miss off the list.

Ipod

I really want to keep the mood up, even when I may feel emotional, so a ‘getting ready’ playlist is a must. I’m thinking Beyonce tunes and classic pop tracks to get the vocal chords chiming and the laughs started early!

Day After extras 

Luckily, we are staying at our fabulous venue over night, and then whisking off to the airport for our honeymoon! With that comes major preparation for the morning after. There isn’t much to be added, other than a gorgeous satin robe that says Mrs on the back. I want to spend the first morning as a married women sipping champagne in a Mrs robe and this is utterly perfect! Of course, we will be using our personalised wine glasses and eating plenty of breakfast snacks, in bed!

Shop : Hukemoller 

For now, that’s all I have currently waiting for the wedding morning. I think I have been pretty organised but I am sure there is something I have missed! 

Have any advice or something I need to pack? 

As always, leave your thoughts in the comment section below! 

Charlotte x