Showing 12 Result(s)
Planning Advice

Choosing Your Team of Suppliers


Choosing your team of suppliers can feel overwhelming. With so many suppliers to choose from it can be hard to know where to start! You want a team you can trust! A team that “gets” your vision and what you’re hoping to achieve. One you won’t have to micromanage or worry about on the day. Suppliers you just bounce off, who you can be honest with and who you know will provide the best service possible.

So, where do you start?

Google – Is a super easy way to find suppliers. You can search via a location, company name or specialism. Most suppliers have a website containing details of their services, a blog and testimonials. It’s normally easy to request further information via their contact page too.

Instagram – Is a great way to connect with suppliers and get to know them on a more personal level. Their grid acts as a portfolio, while their stories provide the perfect platform for them to share snippets of their work and BTS. This is a great way to get an idea of the person behind the brand.

Wedding Fairs – Are a brilliant place to meet suppliers face-to-face, ask questions and get samples. There’s normally lots of delicious cake to try too! If you’re in the early stages of your planning this is an easy way to start your supplier search. Lots of suppliers all in one room immediately help you to narrow down what you like and really don’t like.

Venue Recommendations – Your venue will have a list of suppliers they can recommend. These are normally suppliers the venue knows well and they trust to provide a good service. This can be a helpful starting point and will give you something to compare other suppliers and quotations to.


Your team of suppliers have a significant impact on your wedding and the experience you and your guests have, so take the time to do your research before you sign those contracts!

So, what can you do to make sure your suppliers are the right fit for your day?

1. Check the images on their website and social media are their own work – You want to make sure the work you love is their own and has not been taken as “inspiration” from someone else’s portfolio. Check the image credits, have they contributed to that image in some way? If the images are just “inspiration” then you might end up disappointed with the service, they provide.

2. What experience and knowledge do they have? – Do they share snippets of their knowledge and expertise on their website, social media or blog? Do they have testimonials that back up their services and the quality of their work? You want to make sure your suppliers have the right knowledge and expertise for the role you are hiring them to do.

3. What does your gut say? Do you like them and their brand values? You work closely with your supplier in the run-up to your wedding and on the day itself, so it’s important you feel comfortable around them. You want to surround yourself with a team that takes the time to understand you and your wedding vision. A team you can trust.

There is a lot to consider when choosing your team of suppliers. I hope this has provided you with some helpful tips to get you started. This is a topic I spend a lot of time discussing with my couples and over on my LET’S TALK DETAILS mailing list. If you’d like some help with sourcing your team of suppliers or want more information on my services then get in touch! I’d love to hear all about your wedding.

Image Credits – Chris Spencer Photography / Charlottes Floral Design / Louise Fawcett MUA / Skipbridge Country Weddings / Hannah Rachael Weddings



Planning Advice

10 Things To Consider If You’re Having A Marquee Wedding

I love a marquee wedding! There are so many benefits to having one. They offer complete flexibility. You can tailor them to your specific requirements and numbers and they create the most beautiful setting for a summer garden wedding. However, there is a lot to consider if you’re thinking of opting for one for your wedding. So, that’s why I thought I’d share 10 things to consider if you’re having a marquee wedding.

1. Location

It’s important that you consider the land your marquee will be placed on. Your marquee company will want to conduct a site visit to make sure the ground is suitable and there is sufficient space for your numbers and requirements. The ground will need to be level and if possible, well-draining. The grass will need to be cut a couple of days prior to your marquee being erected to make sure the ground underneath isn’t spongy or uneven.

It is also important to consider how your suppliers will gain access to the site. Your marquee company, toilet provider, caterer and bar company will need to be able to drive onto the site to offload their equipment. If there is heavy rainfall on the run up to your wedding, then it will be key to discuss how this may affect set up and pack down.

2. Style

When it comes to choosing the right structure for your celebration it comes down to a few different elements – ground type (e.g. grass, gravel, tarmac), your guest numbers, aesthetics, and the season. It’s important you do your research, so you understand the practicalities of each one. The ones you may be most familiar with are – pole tents, frame tents and stretch tents. It’s important you choose the right structure for your day and requirements, so don’t be afraid to approach marquee companies to discuss this further before deciding.

3. Parking

Where will guests and suppliers park on the day and how may cars can you accommodate? Can they gain access 24/7 or is this limited to certain times? Your suppliers will also need to be able to drive up to your marquee to unload their equipment so it’s important you’re mindful of this too.

You will also need to make sure this is well lit!

4. Furniture & Styling

Now it’s important to consider what the inside of your marquee will look like and the functionality of the space available. I like to think of a marquee as one continuous space divided into 3 sections.

Section 1 – Your dining area, normally where your wedding breakfast will take place. This typically consists of long or round tables or a combination of the two.

Section 2 – Your bar area. The position and style of your bar will normally be dependent on the style and size of your structure and guest number. This acts as your reception area which will normally have enough space for guests to grab a drink at the bar and dependant on space you might also have some lounge seating or poser tables.

Section 3 – Then there’s your dancefloor and in some cases your stage. This is normally where you’ll spend the evening partying the night away.

Your marquee company and wedding planner can help you to establish what you can do to maximise the space available. Some couples even look to create multiple spaces or ‘rooms’ with additional or connecting marquees/structures, however this will all come down to your budget and what you are wanting to achieve with the space you have available.

*If you are having an outside ceremony, you will also need to consider what your plan B will be if it is wet weather. Some couples choose to have an additional structure erected just in case (which can then be turned around and re-used in the evening) with others deciding to use their main structure and set up in the reception/dancefloor area. Every wedding is different, so this is something best discussed directly with your marquee company and wedding planner.*

5. Toilets

Please don’t forget the toilets! This is something which slips couples minds. It may be that you already have toilets onsite, but if not, this is something you will need to hire. There are a few different options available including port-a-loos, urinal blocks and trailers. All offer different features at varying price points.

You will need to consider if they require electricity and water and where they are going to be positioned in relation to your marquee. My tip would be to make sure these are kept out of sight, round the back of your marquee would be ideal. It’s also worth noting that if they are positioned on grass you might want to run some matting to them in case of wet weather. You will also need to make sure these have adequate lighting too.

6. Power & Water Access

Make sure you are aware of your supplier’s power and water requirements. This can drastically affect the service they are able to provide. Make sure to liaise your supplier’s requirements with your marquee company and wedding planner. That way they can make sure this is distributed correctly during set up.

7. Catering

You will most likely need to provide a catering area which is attached to your marquee. This is normally done in the form of a catering tent (your caterer will be able to advise how big this will need to be). You will also be required to provide trestle tables and lighting for in here too.

This is an absolute must, so don’t think you can save a few pennies by not including one.

8. Bar

The first question to ask yourself is who is providing the drink (alcohol and soft) for your wedding? Are you hiring in a bar company to do this or are you providing your own?

If you’re providing your own then you will need to look at hiring a bar and staff who can chill and serve this on the day.

If you aren’t providing the drinks yourselves then you will need to hire in a team who can provide everything you need.

9. Lighting

There are so many beautiful lighting options from Edison bulbs to festoons and fairy lights. The options are endless, so speak directly to your marquee company who will be able to advise further.

It’s also important to consider what else may require lighting e.g. your toilet facilities, the car park etc. It will most likely be dark when guests leave, so it is important to consider how they will make their way offsite safely.

10. Wet Weather

My advice would be to always have a backup plan! You never know what is going to happen weather wise so being prepared for all eventualities is key. It could be that you need extra matting running from the car park to the marquee. Or that you need to have a backup plan for your outdoor ceremony and drinks reception.

Having a plan B results in a lot less stress and panic on the lead up to your wedding. If you’re unsure on your plan B then get in touch, I’d be happy to discuss this with you further.

I hope these 10 tips have helped you to make sure nothing gets missed when planning your marquee wedding. If you’re still a bit unsure or want to double check you have everything accounted for then get in touch. I’d love to hear all about your marquee wedding.

Image credits – Glix Photography / Firewood Film / Boutipi / Hannah Rachael Weddings

Planning Advice

3 Planning Tips for 2022

I thought I’d start 2022 off by sharing 3 planning tips to help you get excited about planning your wedding. I hope you find these 3 planning tips help to keep you focused and most importantly overwhelm free.

1. Don’t Rush

Rushed decisions normally lead to costly mistakes when it comes to wedding planning.

To avoid making rushed decisions take time to…

Get clear on your budget – You might not know how much each supplier or element is going to cost, but it is important you understand how much you want to spend in total!

Identify your core values – These are the things that make you unique as a couple. Your likes, dislikes, the food and drink you love and the experiences and adventures you have together. Note these down and get clear on what’s important to you. You’ll want to find suppliers who align with these.

Pinpoint your wedding priorities – Get clear on your 5 must-have elements, the details and suppliers you can’t see your wedding without. It’s normally a good idea to prioritise sourcing these.

Don’t feel pressured into making spur of the moment decisions and don’t feel as though you need to include details that don’t align with who you are as a couple.

2. Choose your team wisely

Choosing the right team for your wedding can feel overwhelming and it can almost feel impossible to know where to start when you’re faced with so many suppliers to choose from.

You want a team you can trust! A team who ‘get’s’ your vision and what you’re hoping to achieve. One you won’t have to micromanage or worry about on the day. Suppliers you just bounce off, who you can be honest with and who you are confident will provide the best service possible.

So, what can you do to make sure your suppliers are the right fit for your day?

1. Check the images on their website and social media their own work – You want to make sure the content which has attracted you in the first place is their own and has not been taken as ‘inspiration’ from someone else’s portfolio. Check the image credits, have they contributed to that image in some way? If the images are purely ‘inspiration’ then you might end up disappointed with the service, they provide.

2. Double check what experience and knowledge they have – Do they share snippets of their knowledge and expertise on their website, social media, and blog? Do they have testimonials which back up their services and the quality of their work? You want to make sure your suppliers have the right knowledge and expertise for the role you are hiring them for.

3. What does your gut say? – Do you like them and their brand vales? You will be working you’re your suppliers closely in the run up to your wedding and on the day itself, so it’s important you feel comfortable around them. You want to surround yourself with a team who take the time to understand your wedding vision. Who you feel you can ask questions.

Remember, your team of suppliers have a significant impact on your wedding and the experience you and your guests have. So, take the time to do your research before you sign those contracts!

3. Get intentional

Pinterest is one of the biggest causes of inspiration overwhelm, so take some time out now to do some decluttering.

Here are some tips to help you declutter your Pinterest board.

Tip 1 – Create a new Pinterest board so you have somewhere fresh to save your images/inspiration going forward.

Tip 2 – Only save images and videos which truly mean something to you, don’t save for the sake of it.
Does the image/video help you to convey your colour palette, the atmosphere you want to create, or how you want your day to look or feel? If not, then don’t save it

Tip 3 – Don’t ask your suppliers to replicate something you’ve seen on Pinterest. Trust them to them use their creativity to design something which feels personal and individual to you and your day. 

By getting really intentional with the content you are pinning, you end up with a board which feels considered and personal. This helps you to create a pool of images which can be used as inspiration when speaking to your suppliers.

Remember, less is always more!

I hope you’ve found these 3 planning tips useful! Why not sign up to my LET’S TALK DETAILS mailing list to receive even more planning tips. I send out one email a week packed full of planning goodness. Click the button below to sign up now…

Image credits – A Little Picture Photography / Florals – Wonderland Blooms & Simply Foliage / On The Day Coordination – Hannah Rachael Weddings

Planning Advice

You’ve Chosen Your Venue, But What Happens Next?

So, you’ve chosen your wedding venue and you’ve secured the date, but what do you do next? It’s completely understandable that you might be a bit unsure of what happens next. Choosing your venue is a big part, but planning doesn’t stop here. Have a read on to find out some things you can do now to help you kick start the next stage of your planning.

Chat to a wedding planner

If you’re considering a wedding planner, then now is a brilliant time to start working with one. Whether that be on a permanent basis or on an hourly basis every few months. They can help you to create a logical plan and advise you of the next steps personal to you and your day.

Work out your priorities

These are your must haves, the elements you can’t see your day without! I always recommend getting clear on your 5 top wedding priorities to allow you to establish the focus for your wedding and planning going forward (these are the suppliers/elements you’ll want to prioritise sourcing)

Get clear on your budget

Your budget is crucial when it comes to your next steps and sourcing suppliers. At this early stage it can feel quite tricky to know exactly how much each supplier will cost, however it is crucial that you understand now how much you have to spend. By prioritising your budget from the beginning you will save yourself a whole load of time, overwhelm and overspending.

Create a contingency plan

It’s very unlikely that you will be spot on with your calculations from the beginning. That’s why it’s always wise to allocate for some inevitable overspending. It’s normally a good idea to add in a contingency allowance for over spending in general, as well as market price increases to your food and beverage (10%-15% is normally a good starting point for this)

I hope you’ve found these tips useful for what to do after you’ve chosen your venue. If you’re still feeling a little bit unsure of what to do next or feel you want to discuss your ideas in more detail then get in touch. I’d love to hear all about your plans so far!

On My Instagram

Image credit – Hannah Brooke Photography / Thicket Priory

Planning Advice

5 Wedding Planning Tips

There really is so much to think about when it comes to planning your wedding and sometimes it can almost feel quite overwhelming too. That’s why I wanted to share 5 wedding planning tips to help keep you on track.

Tip One

Use Hashtags # to search for your wedding suppliers on Instagram.

Try typing into the search bar your wedding location and the type of supplier your looking for e.g. #yorkshireweddingphotographer #yorkshireweddingflorist. This is a really great way to find suppliers in your area.

Tip Two

Keep your wedding priorities at the heart of every decision you make.

Remember, these are the must have elements you can’t see your wedding without and will form the focus for your planning and supplier sourcing going forward. 

Tip Three

Creating a cohesive design for your wedding is a progression of ideas.

It will take take time, a lot of consideration, evaluation and tweaking, but don’t worry that’s only natural! When you start to feel overwhelmed with ideas take a break from scrolling on Pinterest. The rest will help clear your head.

Tip Four

Create a spreadsheet & get everything in one place.

Have your budget breakdown, suppliers details, payments and details of key dates listed in one place. Having everything on one spreadsheet makes it easier to stay up to date and on track with your next steps.

Tip Five

Take time to think about the little details.

This can be anything from the way you want to feel on your wedding day, the wine you serve with your wedding breakfast or the colour of your taper candles. All these little details make your day personal to you, the experience you have and atmosphere you create, so don’t underestimate them.

Are you struggling with elements of your wedding planning or just don’t know which bit to tackle next? Why not book a wedding planning hour with me! You can use this hour to ask me any questions you like. I’ll then go away and type everything up including suggestions, wedding planning tips and recommendations for you to refer back to.

To find out more click the link below.

Image Credits: Hannah Brooke Photography / Thicket Priory / I Do Hire / Dotty Bridal / Rebecca Anne Designs / Chrys Chapman MUA / Hannah Rachael Weddings

On My Instagram

Planning Advice

How To Enjoy Planning Your Wedding & Avoid Overwhelm

Happy New Year!

I hope you had an amazing festive break and are looking forward to getting started with your lovely wedding planning even after the latest lockdown announcement.

I want to say a massive welcome if you are new to my blog. This is definitely one of my little happy places. It’s where I come to discuss all things weddings, share my top tips and help you to navigate the wonderful, but sometimes overwhelming world of wedding planning!

And what better way to kick start 2021 than with a new blog post – how to enjoy wedding planning and avoid overwhelm! I don’t know about you, but I find a new year tends to be filled with anticipation and a lot of excitement for what’s to come. It’s a great time to start or re-start your wedding planning and to put some wonderful ideas into motion. While that may all feel exceedingly exciting I also understand just how quickly this can turn into feelings of stress and overwhelm. Which is something I want to help you avoid at all costs!

This is why I want to dive straight in with a few vital top tips to stop this from happening. All to help avoid the unnecessary pitfalls of wedding planning.

Let’s get started

I can’t promise that you won’t find certain elements of your wedding planning slightly stressful or without overwhelm. However, what I do hope is that my top tips help to limit the amount you feel this!

So, where to start?

1. Start by sharing your amazing news

I know everyone says it, but it really is important to enjoy being engaged. It’s such an exciting time and an amazing next step in your life. One which deserves to be celebrated.

I know that might be tricky at the minute (due to Covid) but don’t let it stop you telling all your friends and family. Take some time out to enjoy being engaged before throwing yourselves deep into wedding planning. Have fun collecting wedding magazines and losing yourself in different blogs. Fill your heads with excitement and the newness of being engaged.

2. Identify your priorities

I always advise my couples to start by identifying their priorities (in other words their ‘must haves’). These are the things you just can’t imagine your wedding without. These ‘must haves’ are your ticket to creating a day which is truly unique to you.

Here are my favourite questions to get you thinking about your wedding ‘must haves’

What words would you use to describe your personalities?

What do you enjoy doing to relax, what hobbies & interests do you have?

How would you describe your dream wedding? (e.g. fun, informal, relaxed, elegant etc.)

When would you like to get married? (think about the season, day of the week, year)

What types of food & drink do you love & why?

Where in the world do you see yourselves getting married & why? (abroad/close to home/where you grew up?)

These questions should help you to identify what makes you stand out as a couple. They should get you thinking about what you love doing, eating and drinking. What you enjoy doing in your spare time and where you like to go on holiday. And most importantly why you love these things so much! By asking yourself why you will start to focus on your ‘must haves’, the elements you just can’t see your wedding without.

Remember

Your wedding is a representation of you as a couple, your loves and most importantly your personalities. Identifying your must haves, the elements you can’t see your wedding without, will help you to prioritise these the further you get into your planning.

3. Create a budget

Next up is budget, the one thing every couple hates talking about.

Believe me, if you don’t take the time to establish your wedding budget early on you run the risk of overspending very early on. This in itself can be stressful.

By prioritising your budget from the beginning you therefore have a clearer understanding of what you can achieve and what you have to spend on each element.

Questions to ask yourselves when identifying your budget

Roughly how many months are there until you get married?

Will anyone else be contributing financially to your wedding?  If so, how much?

Total amount you have to spend?

4. Give yourself plenty of time

Now you’ve identified your wedding priorities and budget, give yourself plenty of time to explore your options. You don’t have to, or need to, do everything right this minute, all in one go. Yes, some suppliers do get booked up 12 to 18 months in advance, but rushing this part of your planning won’t secure your dream team.

Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook are some of my favourite places to start researching venues and suppliers. Think of these as the perfect way to get to know suppliers, their style and what they can bring to your wedding. Treat their profiles as their portfolio.

When looking for your suppliers ask yourself, does their work, imagery and personality align with your wedding vision? Do you like what they stand for? And can you see them being a part of your day?

Top Tip

Don’t be afraid to reach out to suppliers. Feel free to ask them questions about their work, their services and their processes.

Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook are also a brilliant source of inspiration. Use these as a way to gain a better understanding of what you like and dislike. Save images which catch your eye and inspire you.

Remember

The further you get into your wedding planning, the more you get to know your style and the overall aesthetic you’ll want to create for your day. So don’t worry if you feel as though you don’t have a clear idea of what you want just yet.

5. Book your venue & your ‘must have’ suppliers 1st

I know this may sound a bit contradictive, as I told you to not rush earlier, but it is never too early (once you have found your favourite suppliers) to secure your wedding date in their diary.

The first supplier I advise you to secure is your venue. Your venue really does set the tone for your whole wedding and should align with your ‘must haves’.

For instance,

If catering is important to you make sure to ask each venue about the different options available, menu choices and if this is something you can outsource.

If you want an outdoor ceremony, check the venue can accommodate and make sure this complements your vision.

Once you have your venue and your date secured, the next step is to book your ‘must have’ suppliers. As I mentioned earlier, it’s never too early to start discussing your wedding and choosing the right team for your day. By securing your ‘must have’ suppliers first, you then have an idea of your remaining budget and where you want to allocate this.

6. Don’t leave things to the last minute

The final key to avoiding wedding planning overwhelm is to not leave everything to the last possible minute. Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to tick off your to-do list, sign your contracts and pay your deposits and to do your research. Because if you don’t you will end up rushing and forgetting to do those small but very important tasks.

Top Tip

Create a spreadsheet or checklist of everything you need to do and when you need to do it by.

This way you have a clear direction to your planning and avoid missing any important details.

Make sure your to-do list/spreadsheet is accessible at all times. Print it off and put it in your wedding file, have it saved on your phone or stick it to your fridge. Having this written down and easy to access will help to keep you on track and motivated.

So, there we have it, my top tips for how to avoid overwhelm and to enjoy your wedding planning. There really is no denying that wedding planning, at times, can feel like an extra job on top of everything else you have going on in life. However, with a little bit of pre-planning and some helpful tips along the way, it really doesn’t have to feel overwhelming and stressful too.

Want more tips and wonderful tricks to help you through the many stages of your planning? Then sign up to my mailing list to receive my free wedding planning guides.

On My Instagram

Image Credits – Freya Raby Photography / Ponden Mill / Kelly Hanks Hair Design / Natasha Jane Makeup / Jessica Steele Jewellery / Haworth Menswear / The Aisle Ilkley / Emma Cox Floristry / Where The Ribbon Ends / Hannah Rachael Weddings

Planning Advice, Wedding Planning Guides

What To Consider When Choosing Your Wedding Caterer

So here it is! The next in the series of my mini Wedding Planning Guides and this has to be one of my favourites! Why? Because it’s all about the tastiest part of your wedding, your wedding catering!

You might not know but before I created Hannah Rachael Weddings I was a Senior Event Manager for a Yorkshire based wedding caterer. So, this is definitely a topic which is very close to my heart and one I know a great deal about.

And believe me this really is something you want to get right!

The food served at your wedding is likely to be one of the biggest investments after your venue, so why take any risks?! I’m here to give you my 3 top tips on what to consider when choosing your wedding caterer. As well as my 5 MUST ASK questions.

Top Tip 1

Taste the food before you commit to your caterer. This is so important! Just because everything looks amazing on Instagram unfortunately doesn’t mean it is in real life. Make sure you arrange an initial consultation and where possible a tasting before putting down your deposit. Your wedding catering is likely to be the biggest investment after your venue, so make sure it compliments you and your day.

Top Tip 2

Be true to yourselves. Food is such a big part of your day and you cannot please everyone so honestly don’t try to. It’s your day. Use it as the best excuse to have what you want, whether that be a five-course tasting menu or a dirty burger and fries. Eat the food you truly love.

Top Tip 3

Canapés are so important! They bridge the gap between your ceremony and wedding breakfast stopping guests getting hangry (which you definitely don’t want). Guests get peckish, especially if your wedding ceremony falls over lunchtime & they’ve had a few champagnes. Believe me, your guests will remember feeling hungry, so do not let that be the lasting impression of your day.

Now on to my 5 MUST ASK questions. My new Wedding Catering Guide is full of them, but these are my top 5. The 5 you need to ask in your initial consultation in order to get to know the caterer and to understand if they are the right fit for you!

Must Ask Questions

  1. How would you describe your catering style?
  2. What menus do you offer? (plated, BBQ, sharing, buffet etc.)
  3. Can you create a bespoke menu for our wedding?*
  4. Have you worked at our venue before and what do you require from our venue?
  5. Do you offer a menu tasting before we book and is there a charge for this?

*Not everyone will require a bespoke menu for their wedding, however if you are looking for a specific dish or themed menu, you must ask this at your initial consultation. Some caterers do not specialise or offer certain cuisines or variations from their set menus.

I could honestly talk about this ALL DAY LONG. Not just because I love food, but because it is such a pivotal part of your day. There is just so much to talk about from menu styles, service and presentation to how to use your food to tell a story.

But what I really want you to take away from this is; the food served at your wedding is what brings your guests together. It’s what gets everyone talking and will be what everyone talks about, good or bad, long after your wedding. As well as showcasing who you are as a couple.

You spend so much of your wedding day eating, so make sure it truly represents you and is something that you’re excited about. You only get one shot at this, so make sure your caterers are the best fit for you and your unique day.

Now this really is just a quick sneak peek into the world of wedding catering. Everything you need to know, including all my must ask questions can be found in my free Wedding Catering Guide. To get hold of your copy all you need to do is click the button below!

Use my Wedding Catering Guide as a tool to help you hunt out the most delicious menus you can possibly find.

My Wedding Planning Guides are designed for couples looking to create a day which is unique, exquisitely planned and full of detail. Why risk missing any detail when you can have your own mini wedding planner with you every step of the way? Keeping you on track and up to date with everything you need to know.

On My Instagram

Image Credits – Freya Raby Photography / The Outside Kitchen / Ponden Mill / Kelly Hanks Hair Design / Natasha Jane Makeup / Jessica Steele Jewellery / Haworth Menswear / The Aisle Ilkley / Emma Cox Floristry / Hannah Rachael Weddings

Planning Advice, Wedding Planning Guides

Why To Go Bespoke – Your Guide To Bespoke Bridalwear

I am delighted to of collaborated with the wonderful Felicity from Felisiti Greis to bring you my next blog – bespoke bridalwear. We cover so much in this blog including why it is crucial to find the right bridalwear designer for you. How the design process works. As well as the benefits of going bespoke and what you really need to consider when doing so.

I honestly can’t wait for you to venture into the world of bespoke bridalwear with us!

Thoughts from Felicity

Your wedding outfit is without doubt one of the most important outfits you will ever get to wear. You have probably been dreaming about every single detail that pertains to your wedding day and you probably have a clear vision of your dream wedding attire by now. There are so many different options available to you in terms of which journey you want to embark on, in your quest to find your dream wedding outfit. The different options available to you are; bespoke, made-to-measure, made-to-order, off-the-rack/ready-made.

Here are some top tips on how to choose the right bespoke bridalwear designer. As well as how to get the most out of your bespoke experience.

What makes a bespoke wedding garment so special & how can you make the most out of the experience?

Just For You

A bespoke wedding outfit is made with you in mind and is your dream and vision. The final design should be the embodiment of who you truly are. This is why it is so important that you choose a bespoke designer who has the ability to design an outfit that speaks to your individuality. Make sure to express all of your ideas to your designer in order for them to bring your vision to life.

Visualisation & Experience

The bespoke process offers a beautiful experience. One that builds an anticipation towards the completion or final fitting of your wedding gown. Most bespoke bridalwear designers will create a sketch of the final design for you to see and approve before construction of your outfit begins. Since a sketch is all you will have to go by, it is very important to choose a designer who listens. One who has the ability to beautifully translate your ideas into a sketch. This will help you visualise your wedding outfit before it is brought to life.

Trust & Expertise

The bridalwear designer you choose, like any other wedding supplier, should be one that you have total trust in. You should trust them as a person and also their expertise. This is the person/company that you will be working very closely with to bring your dream to life.

To do away with any doubts, it is best that you ask your designer as many questions as you possibly can. Make sure you are happy with all the answers you are given. I also advise to carefully look at the designer’s portfolio and past work to see if they are an expert in their field. Look out for clues like their attention to detail, finesse and the overall fit of their pieces.

Fit

Bespoke has a reputation for a great fit. The process a bespoke wedding attire goes through, requires on average anywhere between 3 to 5 fittings. The first fitting is usually what is called a toile (a toile is an early version of a finished garment made up in cheap material so that the design can be tested and perfected). Once the design is perfected, the designer will then usually start the process of creating the actual wedding outfit. The aim of the toile fitting is to perfect the final design of the garment. Therefore, you should take full advantage of this part of the process and all subsequent fittings.

Voice out any concerns, changes or alterations that you may want made to the design. This part; like any part of the process, requires complete trust in your designer as you see your beautiful dream take shape and come to life right before your very eyes. A great designer offers an impeccable fit and a flattering silhouette that compliments your beautiful body shape.

This is a topic I could talk about all day! With a background in fashion and bridalwear myself, this is something which is very close to my heart. It’s also an area I feel most couples aren’t aware of when looking for the perfect outfit(s) for their wedding.

Going bespoke means you are able to create something which is personal to you. To your style and your vision. Another way to make your wedding truly unique to you.

This is exactly why Felicity and I cover so much more about bespoke bridalwear in my new Wedding Planning Guide! Click the download button below to get hold of your free copy now.

This guide is full of questions to ask your designer, things to think about and how to navigate the bespoke process. You really don’t want to miss out on all this wonderful information.

On My Instagram

Image Credits – Emma Ryan Photography / Felisiti Greis / Hannah Rachael Weddings / Ponden Mill / The Petal Studio / Amore Headwear / Unity Rhodes Bridal / Aminaa Beauty

Planning Advice, Styling & Décor

My 5 Wedding Breakfast Styling Tips

So not to disappoint here is my latest blog post (as voted by you) – My 5 wedding breakfast styling tips to help you to narrow down all your styling ideas. This blog will walk you through the 5 details I consider when designing a wedding breakfast.

1. Colour Palette

I always start with my colour palette. Your colour palette sets the tone for the whole aesthetic and decorative details. I use my venue to draw inspiration for this.

I consider the style of room where the wedding breakfast will take place, how the room is decorated and any prominent features it may have. I also like to think about what season the wedding will be taking place in.

Then I go on to create a colour palette consisting of 5 key colours which I will draw from for my florals, linen, table settings and décor details throughout. Adding more colours than this can overwhelm and almost over power the overall aesthetic you are hoping to achieve.

Remember less is more when it comes to your colour palette. Keep it refined, considered and cohesive for optimum impact.

2. The Venue

The overall aesthetic of your tablescape should align with the style of your venue. You want to chose decorative details to compliment your venue not contrast it!

Start by considering which 3 words you would use to describe your venue? Now think about your wedding vision and the way you want your wedding to be described.

Once you have these words consider the different ways in which you could compliment and encapsulate this vision.

This is something I go into much more detail with my couples during their wedding consultations and venue site visits. Do remember, styling your wedding day is a progression of ideas and does takes time and a lot of consideration. Don’t worry if this is something you feel you keep coming back to and evaluating.

3. Table Style

What style of table will you be having? This is such a crucial factor to consider and one which plays a big part in the whole design of your tablescape.

I consider different layouts and details depending on whether I am styling a long trestle or a round table.

With long trestles you tend to have less ‘spare space’ you mainly have the space which runs down the centre of the table. Whereas on a round table you tend to have a larger amount of central space to work with.

Next I consider what the tables look like and the setting of the wedding breakfast.

Traditionally most round tables will need clothing as they tend to be pretty ugly (in my experience). However a lot of long trestle tables are designed with beautiful wooden tops and work really well unclothed. These tend to work best in a more rustic or outdoors setting such as a barn or marquee. Therefore you may feel like adding a simple table runner down the centre of each trestle to add a hint of colour and texture.

If you have opted for a stately home or hotel, for your wedding breakfast then I would definitely recommend the addition of table linen. This adds a level of sophistication and crispness to the overall look and styling of your wedding breakfast. A beautiful base layer for you to style as you wish.

4. Menu Choices

This is a big one and one a lot of couples don’t consider! Your menu choices make a significant impact on your styling choices and the way your tables are laid out.

Think about the menu choices you have made; have you opted for sharing or plated?

If you have opted to include sharing elements then you need to consider, where these will be placed on your tables and how easy it will be for guests to reach and share these dishes amongst one another. I personally find sharing menus work best with long trestle tables. Most trestles divide between 6 guests (perfect sharing numbers) and have the ideal amount of space down the centre for sharing platters.

If opting for sharing you may find you have less space for decorative details. Therefore make your food the star of the show! Create varying heights using risers and trail soft foliage along the centre of the tables to add detail and colour. Why not consider dotting bud vases, taper candles and tealights along the table to add interest and detail.

If however you decide to opt for a plated menu then really the only thing you need to make space for is salt and pepper and accompaniments. Therefore you have more space to dress and style the space on your table as you like.

5. Height Variation

Considering height is crucial to a successful table design. If your guests can’t see one another it makes it really difficult for them to engage in conversation. Your wedding breakfast is a key element to your day and takes up a big proportion of time, therefore you want guests to enjoy themselves.

You can create height variation in so many different ways including;

  1. You could mix and match the centrepieces you have on each table (this works really well if you are having round tables). Opt for a hurricane vase with pillar candle on one and then a high floral vase arrangement on the next.
  2. You could opt for one tall floral arrangement as a main centrepiece then decorate the outside of this with small votives, tealights, bud vases etc.
  3. Or why not vary the heights of the floral/candle arrangements you have running down the centre of your table. You could achieve this by alternating between taper candles, tealights and varying floral arrangements.

I do hope you’ve found my 5 wedding breakfast styling tips a useful starting point.

This is definitely an area I spend a lot of time discussing and reviewing with my couples all to make sure the venue and vision for their day aligns. If you would like to find out more or want help with elements to consider when designing your wedding breakfast then do get in touch.

I’d love to hear from you!

Image Credits – Emma Ryan Photography / Anna Beth Photography / Freya Raby Photography

On My Instagram

Planning Advice

What Is A Micro Wedding & Why Might You Have One?

So what is a micro wedding I hear you ask!

A micro wedding is typically a wedding which contains 50 guests or less and is not to be confused with a small wedding or elopement.

Well, what’s the difference between a micro wedding, a small wedding and an elopement then?

A very good question!

Now the difference between a small wedding and a micro wedding does seem to vary depending on who you talk to! Not at all helpful, I know.

A micro wedding traditionally involves no more than 50 guests, where as a small or intimate wedding is based around an even smaller guest count (20 or less). A small wedding might also follow less traditions or formalities (however this is not always the case). For instance, couples may veto a cake cut and first dance. Or opt for a less formal sit down wedding breakfast and instead have a family style bbq. Some would suggest a small wedding is all about the ceremony and marriage commitment rather than the ‘extra’ details.

Whereas the definition of an elopement wedding is “to run away secretly in order to get married”. A marriage which consists of the two of you, plus a select few witnesses, these may be people very close to you or people you’ve never even met before. Most couples who elope tend to pick a location away from their family home, somewhere meaningful to them as a couple. An elopement can be seen as a ‘hassle free’ way to tie the knot, without the pressures and expectations from family and friends.

5 Reasons You Might Consider Having A Micro Wedding

Micro weddings are definitely not to be seen as micro in any way other than the guest count. They often contain the same fundamentals and traditions as a larger wedding. With some arguing that micro weddings allow you to tailor and personalise your wedding to your guests, providing a more bespoke day. This is mostly due to couples allocating a similar budget for a wedding of 100 to their wedding of 50. This results in a larger budget to spend on elements such as personalised decor, fine dining and luxury drink offerings. 

1. Share your special day with your nearest & dearest only!

As you have decided to focus on a smaller guest list it’s important that the people you do invite are your most nearest & dearest only.

Don’t get sucked into the whirlpool of plus ones, work colleagues and family friends. Having a micro wedding is all about spending the most personal and special day of your lives with your favourite people.

Make it clear from the outset that you intend on having a micro wedding so hopefully no one will be left confused as to why they haven’t been invited.

2. Get creative

A whole host of different venues will become available due to your reduced guest list.

This may even include places which feel more personal to you as a couple, such as your favourite restaurant, art gallery or museum or even your own back garden!

See this as the perfect opportunity to go off piste. Select a venue which may not traditionally be seen as a wedding venue or one others may have to rule out due to guest numbers. It’s another way to create a day truly unique to you, your partner and your lovely guests.

3. Lets talk food & drink

A lot of couples who decide to opt for a micro wedding do so, so they can spoil their guests (and themselves). Think about it, it is the perfect opportunity to go all out and select the finest quality food and drink possible.

With more money to spend per head, as well as more time to spend with your guests, what better way to do so than sipping your favourite cocktails or tucking into a delicious 5 course taster menu?

Why not look to allocate a greater proportion of time to your drinks reception and wedding breakfast. This will create a more relaxed atmosphere, allowing you and your guests to enjoy the day rather than feeling as though you are rushing from one thing straight to the next.

You could opt for a specialist bar offering a bespoke cocktail and champagne menu. You could look into creating a tasting menu with wine pairing, prepared by your own Michelin starred chef. Whatever it might be, make sure it adds a ‘wow’ and excitement to your day. Make it a talking point for all of your guests. It’s the perfect opportunity to create something you might not find at a larger scale wedding.

Top Tip

Whatever you do though, don’t forget about the importance of ambience!

Your luxury dining experience won’t feel so luxury when there’s no background music. Music helps to set the tone, so think about what you’re trying to achieve and make sure your choice in musician or band reflects this.

Do also make sure to think about how your entertainment will transition from day to evening. Do you want something more lively in the evening to get guests up partying? Or are your guests the type to sit and chat all evening long? As you’ve only invited your very nearest and dearest you know them well, so pitch your entertainment at what you know they’ll enjoy.

4. It’s all about the details

Go all out with the finer details and personal touches. Source suppliers who focus on creating bespoke and personalised items, rather than mass produced ones.

Do something different with your favours. Instead of offering guests a foil wrapped chocolate, why not have a local chocolatier make each guest a box of beautiful hand painted chocolates.

Alternatively, why not look to have each of your guest’s names hand embroidered on each napkin. Not only will this add a beautiful finish to your place settings, but it will be a lovely keepsake for each of your guest.

Don’t underestimate the importance of these little touches, your guests will really appreciate the extra effort and time you have gone to.

Things To Consider

Why not go one step further and hire items such as charger plates, coloured glassware and luxe table linens. Decorative details when combined make one hell of a statement.

5. Quality time

For some, larger scales weddings can almost feel overwhelming. Some couples see it as a way to celebrate in the company of everyone they know and love, whereas others find the concept completely stressful.

For couples worrying about how much quality time they will be able to spend with their guests and each other, a micro wedding might just be the answer.

A micro wedding means fewer guests, so in theory more time to spend with each one. Time to chat, grab a drink and to take a moment out just the two of you. As a result, you could argue that you spend less time entertaining and more time celebrating. Sounds like the perfect solution to me.

Top Tip

Whatever you do, don’t forget to hire a photographer to capture your day.

You’ve gone to every effort to create a highly personalised and meaningful wedding, filled to the brim with love, happiness and your favourite people.

So make sure you have these special moments documented for you and your guests to look back on for many years to come.

Hopefully, that helps to eliminate the confusion around what a micro wedding is and provides some interesting pointers on why it may just be the best idea for you and your unique day.

However, as you can see, reducing your guest count doesn’t necessarily reduce the amount of thought, effort or planning that goes into organising a micro wedding.

For more tips and advice on how to create your perfect day then do get in touch.

Image Credits – Phoebe Jane Photography / Wynn Davies Photography / Ivy Alice Stationery / Charlotte’s Floral Design / The Whimsical Cake Company / Denton Hall / The Beverley Barn / Hannah Rachael Weddings

On My Instagram

X