Wedding Planning

Wedding Planning

You’ve got engaged – congratulations!  Over the next few months your attention will focus on the different aspects of your special day. There are many styles to choose from – elegant, rustic, contemporary, chic and woodland to name a few. Large table centres with masses of flowers, jars and tins, foliage runners and elaborate installations.  There are so many options to consider it can be quite overwhelming.  To assist you through the maze of wedding planning here are a few helpful tips.

Firstly, get a folder and set up a costing sheet/spreadsheet and decide on a budget. These are the most important steps in your planning. The folder is important so you can keep a pictorial view of any  ideas you may consider implementing for your wedding. The spreadsheet will aid keeping count of what has been done and the outstanding duties. The budget is important in helping you plan your special day within your limits.

Make a rough list of guests, so you know the size of venue you need. The number of people being invited to the wedding will determine a lot of decisions after that. Other than the venue, it will also calculate the amount of food to be served, the amount of cake to be ordered, the type of venue decoration and seating arrangements for your guests.

When choosing your venue it is important to visit all potential places of interest.  Researching online might provide a good representation of the venue, however, there might be significant differences from any photos.

Wedding venues are extremely varied and can include tepees, barns, country houses, hotels, marquees, village halls, golf clubs, castles and unusual venues, such as pumping stations. Think about how many guests you will have and the sort of food you would like to offer them. You should also consider the atmosphere you want your wedding to create, e.g., a formal or informal setting. Watch out for hidden costs such as portable toilets for an outdoor venue, or dance floor for a marquee.

When you have chosen a venue that you both like, the first thing to do is to check the availability. Also check that whoever is going to marry you e.g. registrar or vicar is also available.

Before you finally book your venue, if your heart is set on a particular string quartet, photographer or florist, check their availability first.

You can now send out Save the Date cards to your guests.

Photographers

What style of photographs would you like? There are some amazing photographers. Take a look at the weddings they have done and see if you like their style. Consider whether they have two or more photographers, so they are both capturing different parts of the wedding day. It can be useful for one to be with the groom and one to be with the bride during wedding preparations.

Makeup Artist and Hairstylist

Normally, makeup artists and hairstylists have a multitude of events to cover, they are usually booked well in advance. Therefore, if you know who you want, you should book them as soon as you have the date. It is always advisable to have a consultation for make up and hair and at least one trial run

Florist

Some florists book several weddings on one day, however I will only book one wedding per day and you are my highest priority. To choose a florist have a look at their work and ideally contact them.  If possible arrange for a consultation. Decide on a budget for your flowers; there is a guide here to give you some idea, If you would like to create your own wedding flowers Rose Cottage offers a DIY Wedding Workshop.

Music

The music played during your wedding will create the right ambiance for the different parts of the wedding. Choosing your musicians is therefore very important.  If possible listen to a sample of music from the band or solo artist before you book.  Be aware of the style they play, how long they play for, and and how long their breaks are for. Enquire whether they provide pre-recorded music during these times to avoid prolonged periods of silence during the reception. You could also put together a list of the songs that you wish them to perform.

Caterers

There are so many options to choose from when it comes to catering. Personal recommendation is always best. It is also peferable to sample the food that will be served during the wedding before the actual day. If it is an outdoor event, there needs to either be a kitchen set up at the venue that includes refrigeration or if the food is transported from elsewhere, it should be refrigerated correctly to avoid any nasty surprises of food poisoning that would ruin your day.

Another consideration is whether you will be paying for the bar or whether you will pay for the first drink. It is becoming usual for the bride and groom  to provide either the first drink at the bar or a bottle or two of wine on the table.

The above is just a little taster for planning a wedding. I hope you find it useful. Photographs courtesy of www.symplyphotography.co.uk … www.bowlofcorks.co.uk … www.pearbearphotography.com