With more than 15 years stage management experience in the West End, Ever Ever After’s husband and husband team, James & Sam Hayden-Harler, have a unique and unparalleled attention to detail, experience of making everything run smoothly and of course, the eye to make your wedding day uniquely memorable. Today they are sharing some golden tips for planning your wedding.
Top 5 tips for planning your wedding
Planning your dream wedding takes lots of time, effort and organisation. If you’re not sure where to start or are struggling for inspiration, here are our top five tips you’ll need to consider when planning your wedding.
1. Budget and allow 10-15% extra for little surprises
Setting a budget may be boring, but it is an essential that you set this first, as this will influence every decision you make for your wedding. Do plenty of research and set a rough budget before you start planning. It can be quite daunting when you make a list of everything you need and you’ll be surprised how quickly it all adds up. When shopping around for quotes confirm with the retailer or supplier whether they include VAT. If not, you may find you’ll be hit with an invoice for more than originally quoted. If you are finding your budget is going over, make a list of priority items you must have, as well as another list for ‘would like to have’. This will make sticking to your budget much easier!2. The Personal Touch
Use the skills of your friends and family to help you make your day individual and special for you. Once the big things are sorted, think about the details that will make your day special. What do you enjoy doing as a couple? How did you meet? Where were your first dates? Let the inspiration for your day come from the journey you have already taken together. Guests love a wedding that has a really personal touch. For instance, you may have a mutual love of a particular band or holiday destination.
Planning a destination wedding can be very overwhelming and many couples decide not to follow their dreams of a wedding abroad purely because of the amount of work it may take to organise. But let’s remember you can delegate most of this work and enjoy a fun elopement or wedding in our dream place. That is what wedding planners are for! Author of our advice article today is Claire – a UK based wedding planner behind Wed in Central Park, who specialises in organising weddings and elopements in New York City’s iconic park.
For the past five years I have been planning weddings for couples who want to get married in New York’s Central Park. When couples make first contact with me, they can be anywhere in the range between knowing exactly what they want, and when and how, and really only being in the very first stages of considering a destination wedding. Many couples are just looking for advice on where to start. I have planned around one hundred and eighty destination weddings or elopements to date. Here is a brief overview of how I would guide a couple who were in the early stages of considering a destination wedding. Whether you think a Central Park wedding would suit you, or you are interested in marrying in another great city of the world, or you are considering getting married on a beach, or somewhere else outdoors I hope this will be of use to get you thinking.
There are a few really big questions that need to be answered early on. Firstly, is this a destination wedding with a group of friends and family, or is this an elopement for just the two of you? Either way, you should discuss your tentative plans or ideas with your loved ones. They may have been assuming you would get married at home, or they might not want to travel, or they may not be able to travel for various reasons. Also, they might have some great ideas themselves, and they might be able to help.
On Sunday I wrapped myself in a nice warm scarf and headed to my beloved Camden to visit a Gay Wedding Show at the Holliday Inn Camden Lock. Honestly I got there late so missed all the best fun and a happy crowd, but still managed to have a glass of bubbly, take a look around and chat to some lovely wedding suppliers.
Here’s couple of companies that caught my eye.
Rings offered by Josef Koppmann are so beautiful I want to get myself an engagement ring now! He makes fantastic cufflinks as well. You can drop into his shop at the OXO tower Wharf and see for yourself.
Beautiful weddings planned by Bee Weddings
Michael Gordon writes and conducts bespoke services for life-cycle ceremonies: weddings, civil partnerships, vow renewals, handfastings, baby-namings etc. He takes pleasure and pride in crafting a unique, bespoke ceremony together with his clients – a ceremony which will be just the way they want it.
Today he shares some advice on non traditional wedding ceremonies.
Does the idea of making your civil ceremony stand out appeal to you? When you don’t want a standard, safe ceremony, but one that is memorable and personal?
Yes, a tailor-made service is absolutely possible – although the official, legal ceremony is still compulsory.
What is the normal procedure?
A civil wedding must be legally registered. There are two ways.
1. You can do it before your ceremony. Book an appointment at your local register office. Just go down (in your jeans!) with two witnesses, and, in a matter of minutes, you will be technically married. Then you can go on to your reception, relaxed in the knowledge that you have done the legal bit. Go out there and enjoy yourselves!
2. Alternatively, if you are marrying at a venue licensed for weddings, then the registrars will come across and conduct their service.
Either way, their ceremony will be totally non-religious and will be standard for each couple.
Taking things further
However, once you’ve done the legal bit and are at your reception, you can have the ceremony that YOU want. This will be the wedding of your dreams! The wedding that reflects your personalities and beliefs, and which will be everything you want it to be!
No extra paperwork is required. Instead, you’ll be working with a civil celebrant, who’ll give you all the ideas and guidance you need, and will prepare a unique ceremony for you.
How will this be special?
Of course, the venue is down to you, and can be very creative!