Planning your wedding details
Over on my Bridal Facebook Group. we got talking about wedding details – where to get them from, how much is too much, what do people do, hand made?, DIY?, buy them ready made and so the conversation went on. I hear many stories of the handmade details taking over a couples dining room table, the spare room and every single weekend so that when the wedding is over they are not sure what they will do!
I have always said and feel that for me – weddings are all about the people. I look for the story, the relationships, the emotion, the engagement but in the same token I understand couples have painstakingly made and planned all the details so I will always capture every single piece of them. You see I got married a little over 10 years ago and back then details didn’t really appear in weddings, there wasn’t the blogs like there is now and things were much more simple. I sometimes come home from a wedding and say to my husband – ‘Shall we do it all again? I would love to have all the pretty details!’ – We literally had some bunches of geberas! he is NEVER up for it I should add, so no wedding renewal on the cards for us.
My right hand woman Louise is currently organising her own wedding and I sometimes think of her as a wedding guest veteran – she has such a large group of lovely friends, has been a bridesmaid a number of times and if anybody knows about details its her. Therefore I asked her to write a few notes on wedding details from a guests point of view – do guests notice them? are they important? is it worth taking so much time? any good tips?
Louise ….. For me, all those little details at a wedding are very important. I’m one of those wedding guests who remembers that Charlotte and George had a cool LED sign above the bar that said ‘Cocktails and Dreams’ or Shell and Levi had a fun box of games and props on each guest’s table to keep them entertained – both real weddings I’ve been to I might add, and I bet they’d be thrilled that people remember all the hard work they’d put into organising the extra details. Because it is hard work – where do you start, and indeed stop?! Details are what make a wedding stand out, in my opinion. Of course the bride is absolutely the main attraction, but there’s nothing like hearing someone let out a gasp followed by ‘ooooh look at this, I haven’t seen this before, isn’t it lovely?!’ As a 2016 bride I am battling with this myself at the moment. There are so many different things on the market, especially for vintage style weddings, claiming to add a little extra to your wedding and it’s very easy to get caught up in buying a hundred pom poms and enough candles to rival Blackpool Illuminations.
I think there are definitely some things to consider before going all out on the extras. Firstly, work with the space you have. If you’re getting married in a barn for example, perhaps there are fairy lights which are left up all year round which you can utilise. Whilst a barn is a blank canvas, most of the time you have to decorate it yourself so bear in mind that all the extra decorations will need to be put in place by someone, and if you’re not the type of bride who wants to be working hard the day before then perhaps it’s better to keep the extras to a minimum. Ask your venue about using candles as they may not allow naked flames due to fire safety.
Secondly, I think it’s a great idea to go back to your venue and just have a good look around. Be realistic with the ideas you’ve had for decorations. Using my own wedding as an example, we’d really like candles to decorate our space – we’re going to go back to the venue and make notes of the areas where we could put candles, which will then give us a solid idea of how many to buy. Hiring is also a very good option for many brides. Hiring eliminates having to eBay or store your decorations after the event, when they may no longer be used again.
Think about your smaller guests, if you’ve spent time and money on sourcing decorations which are then inappropriately placed, the chances are they could get broken or one of the little people could get hurt.
Finally, I’d say this – not all guests are going to notice the extra details you’ve worked so hard on, but that’s ok. It’s more than ok. They’ve attended your wedding day to watch you and your husband marry and to celebrate with you. So if you’re feeling a bit downhearted when it comes to detail, just remember that, as that’s what is important. Louise xx
A few little tips along the way I have picked up ….
1. Usually your guests go in to your reception room before you and quite often couples haven’t seen the room all finished with flowers etc. As a result, they only then see the room full of people. If you want to have a breather and check out the whole room before it is full of people, let your wedding co-ordinator and myself know as then when we are finished your couple pictures, before you head back to your guests we can sneak in to the wedding breakfast room first.
2. If you are travelling from a church to a venue and there isn’t really anywhere directed for your guests to go – they will get there before you – they always go in to the wedding breakfast room. I see it so many times – they want to find their seat, hang their jackets up and put down their bags and sometimes even sit and wait. If you want a picture of the whole room finished before people get in there and actually you want to see the room first, suggest to the venue staff not to let them in the room or ask for your ushers to go ahead after their pictures to prevent people going in.
3. Couples rarely pick detail pictures for their Album – instead focusing on numerous groups because it is felt that they ‘should’ have those in the Album. When a couple struggle to pick their final images for their Album, Louise does offer to sit down with them and help them get the numbers down while also keeping the story of the day and including a few details pictures to scatter between the speeches and mingling of guests.
4. I promise I will capture all your details but I also want to capture the people, the atmosphere, the fun so it is finding a balance. Please don’t panic if I haven’t spent 20 minutes getting all of the little details – I will get the absolute necessary parts of the wedding breakfast room but then get all the little extras while you are eating – this gives me longer to capture people in the afternoon.
5. Sometimes when couples come and look at the Albums with me and they see details that might be a little bit similar to what they are having they will express a little down moment that it is not original. It is original! Please remember I have been to roughly 150 weddings now (only ever to work I might add!) your guests will have been to a handful at the most. They wont have seen navy with sunflowers or hand tied spring flowers or funfair colours or different pastels and it will be completely original to them. Guests don’t compare – they enjoy the day, the company, the opportunity to get dressed up and of course seeing you getting married!