Category Archives: The Wedding Planner

Weddings Abroad Specialist

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Logo Image: http://www.perfectweddingsabroad.co.uk/

I am pleased to announce that I am now working as a Weddings Abroad Specialist for Perfect Weddings Abroad!

If you are looking to take the stress out of planning your Wedding, then how about getting married abroad? Perfect Weddings Abroad work with countless Wedding venues around the World – allowing you to be as involved or relaxed as you would like in the details of your Wedding.

Please get in touch for further information, or visit the website for Perfect Weddings Abroad and check out our stunning Wedding venues.

Alternatively, if you are just looking for a great deal on a holiday getaway, please don’t hesitate to contact me on my Facebook Page – Weddings Abroad Specialist- Emily Annandale, Perfect Weddings Abroad.

I will endeavour to update my blog and facebook page with Wedding tips, fantastic venue locations and any other Wedding-related details that I love and want to share with you – to help and inspire YOU on your Wedding planning journey.

 

 

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Feature Wedding: Jade & Andy

The gorgeous Jade and Andy tied the knot in June this year at the beautiful chapel on the grounds of Aphrodite Hills Intercontinental Hotel in Paphos, Cyprus.

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Having met 3 and a half years previously through mutual friends, the newlyweds spent their first holiday together in Cyprus, and after getting engaged in Marrakech, Morocco 2 years ago,  knew that sunny Cyprus was where they wanted to spend their special day.

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Jade says “It’s such a stunning spot for a wedding and we couldn’t wait to show it to all our guests”, and the couple were lucky enough to share their day with 75 of their family and friends, who flew out to Cyprus for the occasion.

The Style and Decor

The style throughout their wedding day exudes romance  and rustic vintage, with a touch of Grecian influence in the bridesmaids’ hairstyles and floor-length multi-way gowns – from pastel florals to soft grays – the decor is subtle, and yet captivating.

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The stunning hand tied Bridal bouquet and bridesmaid posies, by Paris at Enchanted Flower Lounge, are breath-taking and the perfect balance of blush and ivory against the soft gray dresses – whilst bringing a burst of colour to Jade’s Bridal look, with a mix of blush pink and ivory roses and peonies.

Get Jade’s bridesmaid look here!

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The same floral design is carried on throughout the ceremony and reception decor, with the added touch of these beautiful, huge rustic lanterns, as well as lilac orchids, white hydrangeas and peach roses to complement the romantic style of their day.

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Their rustic -style, 3-tier wedding cake featured a gray and burlap ribbon with an adorable ‘top hat’ and ‘floral garland/veil’ cake topper from Etsy. If you’re looking for something similar, take a look here.

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The Bridal Party Look

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I love the relaxed, casual, but smart style of the Bridal party, especially the royal blue blazers that work so well with the grays, blush pinks and ivory throughout the rest of the Bridal party. Andy and his ushers all had their outfits tailor made especially for the Wedding by Charles Samuel Tailors. If you’re going to get married in Cyprus, why not wear shorts?! And how gorgeous (and in-style!) is Jade and Andy’s 18 -month-old son, and page boy, Leo with his braces and smart page boy outfit?!

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Jade’s Bridal Look

Two months before their wedding, Jade decided to change her wedding gown when she found the beautiful ‘Papillon’ by Jenny Packham at a shop in her neighbouring village and what a perfect choice it was – she looks absolutely stunning in this gorgeous design – the perfect dress for a wedding abroad.

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Jade and her bridesmaids’ hair and make up was done by the fantastic and talented Alisha Owen – Tips and Toes Cyprus – who comes highly recommended and is excellent at what she does. Jade kept her look natural and elegant, with her hair down, a small plait to the side, and some added detail with an embellished headband.

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Credits:

Jade and Andy had the fantastic Blue Jar jazz duo for their ceremony and cocktail reception and had a bit of fun with their guests with a wedding photo booth!

Photography (and all images above) by Paul Jones Photography

Wedding Planner/Coordinator: Natalie Mealing (Aphrodite Hills Intercontinental Hotel)

Hair and Make Up: Alisha Owen (Tips and Toes Cyprus)

Flowers: Paris at Enchanted Flower Lounge

Bridal Gown: Papillon by Jenny Packham

Bridal Shoes: Rainbow Couture

Bridesmaid ‘Twist Wrap’ Dresses: Dessy

Groom and Usher Suits (shirts, shorts and jackets): Charles Samuel Tailors

 

 

Trash the Dress – Drown the Gown

It’s been a little while since I did a personal blog (it has been a very busy start to the wedding season here  in Cyprus), but almost a year on since my own wedding, I am very excited to share this one with you all!

Last weekend, my husband and I decided to take a final trip to Paphos (Cyprus) before we leave the island and head back over to ‘Mud Island’ (UK) in a few months time. I had seen so many incredible ‘Trash the Dress’ photo shoots over the past year and decided that it was something we had to do whilst we were still in this incredible place (sun, sea sand…beautiful!).

We were reunited with out fantastic wedding photographer, Charalambos (Pambis) Iacovou – from Fotokinisi – for the photo shoot, and he had great ideas and locations for us – he was really excited about the shoot which made us feel completely comfortable in our decision to choose him again…and made us really excited!

Before our  photo shoot, I took a trip just outside of Paphos, to visit the lovely Alisha Owen (Tips and Toes Cyprus) who was my hair and makeup artist for my wedding last year, and so kindly (after an exhausting, busy week AND on a Sunday) offered to do my makeup for the photo shoot – a fantastic decision (after hours of splashing about and swimming underwater, my makeup was still in place after I had a shower that evening!).

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We headed off in the late afternoon along a dirt road toward the Adonis Baths (Baths of Aphrodite) – where according to Greek Mythology, Adonis (God of Beauty) and Aphrodite (Goddess of Love, Pleasure and Procreation) had many children together. Having never traveled to this part of the island before, we were amazed by the beautiful waterfall and the crystal clear ‘baths’ – such a unique and unusual location for a Trash the Dress photo shoot.

It is a very  interesting place, oozing Greek mythology, and also happens to be the place where a Cypriot reality show version of ‘Next Top Model’ holds their raunchy photo shoots!

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We were kindly given permission to swim and climb the trees!

 

photoCypriot Models Reality Show – Photo Shoot [Instagram]

Whilst heading down the road toward the Adonis Baths, Pambis spotted a beautiful field that was golden and glistening in the afternoon light. He ushered us out of the car and I quickly changed into my wedding dress (in the sweltering heat at the side of the road) as we ran into the field for our first shoot location.

[Please do not use any images without my permission]

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As we arrived at the waterfalls, and after another quick dress change (I had a new, shorter dress that was more appropriate for jumping into the water, climbing tress and what not!) we had strange glares from the few onlookers who had already braved the freezing waters of the Adonis baths (May is quite warm in Cyprus, but the spring mountain water was still icy) and congratulated us on our marriage (it was too confusing to explain the reason why we had decided to play wedding dress up again) but Pambis quickly explained to the onlookers why this strange man and woman were climbing a tree dressed in their wedding attire, and about to jump into the freezing Adonis baths!

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Tip: Don’t try climbing trees in a long dress, it is extremely difficult to hold your dress up whilst trying not to fall out of the tree.

We had so much fun jumping into the water and flailing about (as all of the onlookers were now taking photographs of us as well), but were quite pleased to get out of the water and change out of our sopping, freezing wet clothes afterwards, to head onto our next location.

If you are planning to wed in Cyprus, and are looking for somewhere off the beaten track for an intimate wedding, the Adonis Baths is an incredible, private location and would make a stunning backdrop for your wedding – have a look at their website for more information.

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Next, we headed toward the Akamas (named after an Athenian warrior, who arrived there after the Trojan war), a beautiful, untouched peninsula on the Western coast that is mostly inaccessible by road (aside from a few beaches). We wanted to go somewhere that we hadn’t been before and that wasn’t as common and popular as Aphrodite’s Rock (Kouklia) or Cape Greko (Protaras). Pambis found a lovely beach, with a cliff backdrop beside the beautiful sunset where we really trashed the dress – swimming, running, rolling about, covering ourselves in sand and seaweed and having a really great time splashing about! I must admit, the photos do look beautiful, but running and swimming in a ,now very very heavy, near to 10kg (maybe a bit of an exaggeration, but it certainly felt it)dress is extremely difficult, and I had to be saved from the waves several times by the husband as my feet got caught up in the chiffon and I got dragged down by the weight of the dress (luckily the Mediterranean sea doesn’t really have tides, or I would be long gone by now).

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After a final change into dry, non-wedding clothes, we made our way back to Paphos for a well-earned shower, and over the next few days eagerly awaited our photo album to be put onto Pambis’ website – Fotokinisi. We were stunned, to say the least, when we saw the photographs – Pambis captured some truly incredible memories for us, and we had so much fun doing it.

Brides and Grooms….if you are getting married overseas – a destination wedding perhaps – or even if you aren’t, doing something fun like this is a great way to rekindle the feelings of your wedding day and all of the memories. Whether you have a trash the dress photo shoot the day after your wedding, or a year after your wedding, it is the perfect way to de-stress (the build up to your wedding day can realistically be so exhausting and time-consuming) and take some time for just you and your husband or wife and have some much deserved, relaxing fun!

Of course all dresses are different, and will react differently to water – so, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend doing this with an extremely expensive or big, heavy gown, but perhaps you could get a second dress to splash around in ( I bought a spare Monsoon dress, so that we could go to two different water locations – and my husband had two sets of his wedding attire, left over from our groomsmen).

I obviously wasn’t going to wear my wedding dress again, but I also never had any intention of selling it or getting rid of it, so this was an easy decision for me. I knew that there were risks involved with getting the dress wet etc, but I wasn’t overly worried if something did happen to it. Luckily, I tempted fate and threw it in the washing machine when I got home, and my dress has come out looking just a gleaming, white and beautiful as it did when I first bought it…..so I’ll hang it up in my cupboard again for another rainy day….

 

Dress (1) : Monsoon

Dress (2): Designed by Emily Annandale & created by Panda and Shamrock (Etsy)

Flower Garland: Fairytale Weeds (Etsy)

Jewelry: white beaded, gold ‘Africa’ bracelets by  Lalesso; anklet by Marine Blue Designs

Hair by Emily Annandale

Makeup by Alisha Owen (Tips and Toes Cyprus)

Photography by Charalambos Iacovou – Fotokinisi

Photo Editing (on a limited selection of photographs) by Christopher Waddell Photography

 

Wedding Planning, Styling & Design: Finalising Your Wedding Guest List

Finalising Your Guest List

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Q & A’s for Your Client When Finalising their Guest List…

 

Q. Who will be paying for the wedding?

          A. My parents will be paying [THE BRIDE]

Q. Do your parents have any expectations about who they would like to invite to your wedding?

          A. They would like to invite some of their oldest friends, as well as all of our extended family (i.e. great aunts and uncles, cousins etc.) and [the Groom’s] family would also like to invite some of their family friends and extended family.

Q. Is there any way both of your parents would be willing to negotiate and shorten the list of guests that they would like to invite?

          A. They definitely want all of our family there, but maybe we can negotiate a few less of their friends.

Q. Do you see all of your extended family often, and do you know them well? Maybe you could shorten the list by deciding on which family members you are close to and who you [the couple] definitely want to have with you on your day. Extended family that you have never seen, or don’t see often may not expect an invitation and you could always hold a smaller family event to celebrate your marriage afterwards?

A. We really only want our closest family and friends there, for an intimate gathering that feels personal and reflects us, with people that we know well. We will try to negotiate the list down to only our immediate close family, and then have our parents’ friends there too. I’m sure our families’ would be happy to have another gathering at a later time with our extended family if they feel that we should.

Q. Who MUST be invited?

A. We really must invite our immediate family (i.e. siblings and their families and children, grandparents, cousins that we are close to and their families), our godparents, our close college and childhood friends, and business colleagues and associates of [the Groom].

Q. Do you feel like you really must invite all of [the groom’s] colleagues, or could you reduce it to those who really do expect a courtesy invite and those who you are closer to?

          A.      I think we will be able to bring the list down to a few of [the groom’s] colleagues who will really expect an invite, and only the ones who work with him in his immediate vicinity.

Q. Have you invited any ex-boyfriends or girlfriends?

A. Yes, we have invited a few, however we are both quite close to [Bride’s ex-boyfriend] and his new wife so we would really like to invite them.

Q. Would you be able to cut down your list by not inviting any of the other ex-girlfriends/boyfriends?

A. Yes, I think we probably don’t need to invite them, as they probably won’t expect an invite – it is really just a courtesy invitation.

Q. Are you inviting ‘plus ones’ for any of your single guests?

A. Yes, we would like to include a plus one on each of our single guests’ invitations.

Q. Do you think you would be able to remove some of the ‘plus one’ invitations, or all of them, and discuss the inviting of an additional guest in person with selected guests who would like to have a plus one?

A. We really feel that it is only polite and courteous to add a plus one onto the invitations of single guests.

Q. Would you be able to negotiate by adding plus one invites onto the invitations of the single guests that you KNOW already have a partner or someone they would plan on bringing?

A. Yes, I think that would be fair to cut down the list a bit by only adding the plus ones onto the guests who we know will want to bring a plus one, and if anyone else wants to they are welcome to ask us and we can then consider it.

Q. Do you want to have children at your wedding?

A. Some of our friends have small children but we don’t really want to have children at the wedding, and don’t have plans to offer children entertainment

Q. Would you be happy for us to write the invitation wording differently, suggesting an ‘adult reception’, so that guests with children can arrange babysitters at home and not bring their children along?

A. Yes, I think that sounds like a polite way of notifying guests that they should not bring their children.

 

Wedding Stationery Proposal for Your Client

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Wedding Stationery Timeline

Remember: The earlier, the better when ordering and sending out invitations

  • 8 Months Before Wedding Date: Order Proof for Save the Date cards and approve design
  • 7 Months Before Wedding Date: Order Finalised Save the Date cards (28 business working days required for delivery)
  • 6 Months Before Wedding Date: Send out Save the Date Cards
  • 5 Months Before Wedding Date: Order Proof for invitations, envelopes and acceptance cards and approve design
  • 4 Months Before Wedding Date: Order Finalised Invitations (including envelopes and acceptance cards) and Place Cards (28 business working days required for delivery)
  • 3 Months Before Wedding Date: Send out invitations
  • 2 Months Before Wedding Date: RSVP Date for Guests (Expect to receive your pre-stamped acceptance cards)
  • 1 Month Before: Order Menu cards and the Order of Service
  • 1 Week After Wedding: Order personalised photograph Thank You Cards
  • 2 Weeks After Wedding: Send out Thank You cards with a personal message

 

Wedding Stationery Proposal

o   Traditional Invitations with the traditional invitation wording, as hosted by the Brides’ parents.

 

Mr & Mrs [Bride’s Surname]

Request the pleasure of the company of

[Mr. & Mrs GUEST NAME]

At the marriage of their daughter

[Bride’s First Name, and Middle Name]

To

[Mr. Groom’s First, Middle and Surname]

At [The Church or Ceremony Venue Name]

On [Day, Date, Month of Wedding]

At [Time o’clock]

And afterwards at

[The Reception Venue Name]

 

 

 

o   A polite mention of an ‘adult reception’ to discourage guests from bringing their children.

 

o   Linen Finish Invitations with personalised Blind Embossing, and an embossed envelope and acceptance card

 

o   Embossed Place Cards using the same Linen finish paper, and an additional ‘novelty’ place setting that is more personal and reflects the style and personality of the couple (i.e. a miniature candy bucket, mini alcohol bottle and shot glass, cupcake in a jar, Mr & Mrs rock candy in a personalised glass jar, Bride & Groom wedding cookies etc.)

 

o   Menu Cards and Order of Service cards will be finalised with the chefs and minister one month before the Wedding Date and ordered in time for the Wedding.

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[ All Images are from Pinterest]

 

Wedding Planning, Styling & Design: Your Wedding Transport

Transportation for your Wedding

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  1. Hire Car – From an elegant vintage car to a pristine Limousine, there are various and lengthy options for vehicles to transport you and your Bridal party to your wedding venue, including:

 

  • Cadillac
  • Rolls Royce
  • Bentley
  • Daimler
  • Jaguar
  • Ferrari
  • Chevrolet
  • Taxi Cab
  • Harley Davidson Escort

 

And more…..

 

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  1. Travel by Air/Water – how about flying in by helicopter, or floating down by hot air balloon? Of course, these are far more extravagant ideas (and depend on the location of your venue), but they will definitely provide the ‘WOW’ factor!

The list doesn’t stop there…

  • Water plane
  • Water taxi
  • Speed boat
  • Yacht

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  1. Horse & Carriage – A very popular, fairy-tale wedding, style of transport that is guaranteed to make the Bride feel like a true princess on her big day. There are various styles of carriages (open top, closed roof etc.) to suit your wedding theme and the season (no Bride wants to get caught out in the rain!).

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  1. Wedding London Bus – A fun and handy choice when transporting a large group of guests from one venue location to another. There is even the option to have a champagne bus tour in some areas! A little less traditional, but a great way to entertain your guests for an hour or so.

 

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  1. The Weird, Wacky & Wonderful -New ideas for wedding transportation are popping up all the time, as couples want to personalise their wedding more and find something that suits their style, personalities and wedding theme. How about a wedding rickshaw (‘tuk tuk’), or arriving by emergency vehicle? These are just a couple of wacky ideas that are slowly emerging…

 

  • Fire Engine
  • Police Car
  • Ambulance
  • Tractor
  • JCB
  • Camper Van
  • Trains
  • Horseback (or donkey?!)
  • Canoe

 

 

 

 

 

 

TWO Reasons Why You SHOULD Hire Transportation for your Guests

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  1. Ensure that ALL of your guests are in the right place, at the right time (especially when the ceremony and reception are being held in two separate venues).
  2. Special attention and care for elderly and/or disabled guests if your venue is difficult to access (i.e. on a beach, on a rough, field-like terrain, or in a remote area)

 

What to Remember When Hiring Wedding Transportation…

  • The Journey Length and Time – Whilst you may have your heart set on a certain reception venue, if it is miles away from your ceremony location, it will not be so enjoyable or easy for guests to move from one area to the other.
  • Seating Capacity & Vehicle Access – Remember that your Bridal party (bridesmaids, father of the Bride etc.) will most likely be traveling with you to the venue location. Take into consideration how many people you will have, and how big or long the dresses of the Bride and Bridesmaids are. You may hire a 6-seater vehicle for the Bride, Father of the Bride, and four Bridesmaids, only to realise that the Bride’s dress takes up two seats next to her!
  • Length of Transport Hire – Do you really need the vehicle on stand-by for the entire day? Many transport companies will charge by the hour, so is it necessary for the vehicle to wait for you at each venue? Ask questions always – maybe they can arrange a deal for you for a full day of transportation.
  • The Weather!!! – Always a difficult one to rely on (especially in the UK!). No matter how many times you check the weather, there is always a chance the weather will change. Remember to take this into consideration when booking your transportation and ALWAYS have a back-up plan!
  • Wedding Theme – It sounds simple enough, but so often the Bride or Groom may have their heart set on a certain type of transportation (i.e. a Ferrari for the Groom to drive off in!) that does not fit in with their wedding theme (i.e. vintage) and may look a bit out of place.
  • Vehicle Driver – Maybe the Bride’s father has planned to drive his Cadillac to the ceremony venue with the Bride and Bridesmaids, but this is not ideal after a few celebratory flutes of champagne, and needing to move on to the reception venue. Be sure to think about the whole day and the practicalities of your transportation. Most often the best idea is to hire a chauffeur (majority of transportation hire will include a chauffeur) or check that it is included in the price.

 

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What Happens If There Are Street Closures or Traffic Delays on the Day?

  • Always have a back-up plan for planned/sudden road closures and consider the possibility of delays
  • Plan ahead and find out if there are any major events in the area on the day that may cause traffic, and organise an alternative route, if necessary

 

Transportation Timeline

It’s important to organise a transportation itinerary with the company you are organising your transportation with (if you are using several different companies, then it would be a good idea to let them know the itinerary and the other transportation that will be used – if necessary, they can liaise with each other).

 

Remember: Vintage cars are prone to break down, and horse & carriage are much slower than normal transportation and there is always the potential that obstacles may be encountered, in regards to the horses. Always have a back-up plan, and make sure that the company you hire from has a back-up plan as well.

Typical wedding transportation journeys and order of leaving to the ceremony venue:

 

o   The Groom & Best Man

o   The Bridesmaids and Mother of the Bride

o   The Bride and Father of the Brides

 

Typical wedding transportation journeys and order of leaving from the ceremony venue to the reception venue:

o   The Bride & Groom

o   The Best Man and Groomsmen

o   The Bridesmaids (they would normally travel together with the best man and groomsmen, dependent on vehicle space and numbers)

o   The Mother and Father of the Bride

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[ All Images are from Pinterest and can be found on my Pinterest Board – Wedding Transport – Follow Me!]

Wedding Planning, Styling & Design: Your Wedding Music

Three Stages of Your Wedding Day That NEED Music

  1. Processional (as you walk down the aisle)
  2. Signing of the Marriage Certificates
  3. Recessional (as you walk back up the aisle as husband and wife)

 

The type of music allowed during your ceremony may vary, depending on whether you are having a civil ceremony or a church/religious wedding. For the civil ceremony, the music can usually be anything of your choice – be it a current pop song, or the traditional wedding march. Music for a church or religious wedding will need to be confirmed with the Minister, or someone within the Church, prior to your wedding to ensure that it is suitable for the occasion. However, most often, a Church wedding will have instrumental music (usually an organist), as the space is so vast within the Church walls, and it is important that the music isn’t lost – therefore, instrumental music is ideal for this environment.

 

A quick guide to ‘venue appropriate’ music, and something to keep in mind when visiting potential venues.

 

Remember the word ‘A-R-E-A’

 

  • A – Acoustics
  • R – Rules & Regulations
  • E – Electricity & Equipment
  • A – Access

The next music you will have to decide upon is the First Dance, and the reception music (cutting of the cake, the introduction of the Bride and Groom, and the party music)for your guests to dance away to for the rest of the night!

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Entertainment Options

The list is endless for the types of additional entertainment that you can hire for your wedding:

  • Photo Booths (complete with social media app!)
  • Magicians
  • Dancers (these could be traditional dancers from the region)
  • Caricature Artist (keeping your guests entertained for a little while, and a great keepsake or wedding favour for them to take home)
  • Belly Dancers or an exotic dance act
  • Singer Impersonators
  • Comedy/Singing Waiters
  • Fireworks
  • Casino Tables
  • Circus Act/Stiltwalkers
  • Character Dress Up
  • Tarot/Palm Reader

Don’t Forget – Children’s Entertainment!

o   An activity pack of colouring books, pencils and games

o   A fun ‘wedding – related’ board game

o   A pack of cards or card game

o   A Keepsake Box to fill with memories from the day

o   An ‘I Spy’ list of photographs to take with a disposable camera

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FIVE Musical Options for Your Wedding

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o   Harpist

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o   Live Band (Big Band, Steel Band, Dixieland, Tribute band etc.)

Wedding-Singer

o   Live Singer

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o   Jazz Band

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o   DJ

The Benefits of Working With an Agency…

ü  Takes the stress out of searching for the perfect entertainment for you

ü  They have a database of hundreds of reputable companies

ü  Everything is organised by the agency, so you don’t have to worry about what to do if the band/entertainment doesn’t turn up

ü  Remember – experience with weddings is important! By going through an agency, you get what you pay for.

 

 

Hiring a DJ: The Pros & Cons

Pros

  • The DJ is experienced and will have a large selection of music (popular, new and old)
  • No hassle for the Bride and Groom to select all of their music
  • Easy entertainment for the evening that will suit the taste of most guests

 

Cons

  • Playing anything and everything – don’t forget to make a list of ‘DO NOT PLAY’ songs that you just cringe at the thought of!
  • Exhausting for older guests who may not want to dance all through the night, and for the younger children who will get bored quickly!

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[All images from Pinterest]

Wedding Planning, Styling & Design: Choosing Your Caterer

What a Caterer Must Know Before Making a Proposal

www.pinterest.com

ONE   The likes/dislikes and potential allergens of the couple (and their guests)

 

TWO   What type of meal the couple would like to have on their day (buffet, sit down meal, food stations, hors d’oeuvres etc.)

 

THREE   The Bride and Groom’s personality. It is important that the couple are paired with a caterer who can match their personality. If you don’t like/get on with someone, it is likely that you won’t hire them.

 

FOUR   What type of ‘service’ the couple would like.

  • Ice in their water?
  • Women served first, followed by men?
  • When/how would they like the plates to be cleared?
  • How would they like things to be served?

 

How A Caterer Can WOW Their Clients

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  1. Tell a story and make the clients feel hungry with descriptive foods

 

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  1. Mouth-watering photos of the food they can produce, or have produced in the past

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  1. Tailor the proposal to the couple by including colours and flavours that will match their theme, scheme and personalities

 

 

Trends In Catering

  • Ethnic and cross-cultural

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Traditionally, in the Western World, the wedding breakfast would be the main meal and menu of the Wedding day – usually a plated set menu that would be served to the guests. Various types of cuisine have been popularised in parts of the World, which have become very popular at weddings. For example, sushi stations could be set up for guests to help themselves to different types of sushi, and watch the chefs prepare all of the fresh ingredients – it is also a fantastic cocktail food, as it is bit-sized and easy to serve. For a different theme, a selection of Italian antipasti could be served to each table (replacing the usual bread and butter), or even small touches such as olives and breadsticks on the tables, or a mixture of different Greek dips could be served with pitta bread to add a little more excitement to the menu. Or why not have an artisan cheese table, with grapes and delicious homemade biscuits for guests to help themselves to after their meal?

 

  • Unconventional

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With the abundance of different types of cuisine today, couples are far more likely to want a variety of flavours and dishes that surpass the usual and traditional meal. Unconventional and unusual foods may be fitting to their theme (i.e. an Italian menu for a rustic farm wedding or a pig on a spit and BBQ for a beach or backyard wedding). Although these are far more common now, they were much less common when weddings had a traditional and formal sit down meal.

 

 

  • Weddings that last several days

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Popularised by different cultures (e.g. traditional Indian wedding culture) whereby a wedding would be spread over several days, encompassing various traditions with all the guests during this time. This type of wedding calls for a great amount of catering, to cater for all of your guests over those days. It is also important to have a variety of different themes within your chosen menus, in order to ensure that your guests do not get bored of having the same food each day – spice things up! Today, the traditional wedding is less popular, and with the global spread of many families, it is a great way to celebrate with all of your gathered family and friends over several days (including the day of the actual wedding).

 

 

Popular Catering Services

BUFFET

  • Food is set out and guests help themselves
  • Dinnerware, and serviettes are usually situated at the beginning of the buffet (rather than laid out on the tables), whilst glassware and silverware is placed at the end of the buffet table area (preventing guests from holding too many things at once whilst serving themselves at the buffet

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PLATED

  • Waiters bring dishes and courses to each guest, served on a plate
  • The table will be set with all the silverware and glassware required for your meal, usually with a charger plate, as waiters will serve each dish individually

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COCKTAIL

  • Food is served by waiters on trays in delectable mouth-sized bites
  • There may be limited seating, and tall cocktail tables are situated around the cocktail area for a more social and relaxed feel

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Primary Considerations When Choosing Your Caterers

  • Is their food fresh and where do their ingredients come from? Be sure to pay attention when listening to caterers as they describe their dishes and ingredients, in order to distinguish the quality of the produce used.

 

  • Are they willing to stretch themselves beyond the standard limit of food menus? Are they willing to create something personal and customised?

 

 

  • Are the waiters attentive and knowledgeable about the dishes?

 

  • The Cost. What is included in the ‘package’ and what is additional? Remember that staff and equipment rentals are often forgotten, and will be an additional cost

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[ All Images from Pinterest]

Wedding Planning, Styling & Design: Rustic Beach & Barn Wedding Venues

Beach Weddings Bournemouth

Ceremony & Reception Venue

Wedding photography by Brighton Photographer Emma Lucy

A beautiful and exclusive wedding location on West Cliff Beach, Bournemouth, for your ceremony and wedding breakfast!

The perfect location for a laid back, yet elegant and classy wedding, held by a venue with high, and excellent standards. This is a very unique venue with unusual features, and will be fantastic for your wedding photographs and has the added ‘Wow’ factor for your guests. The exclusive full day hire of the venue will allow you and your guests to enjoy a full day of wedding celebrations (with your civil ceremony taking place at any time between 10am and 1pm) with the option to continue on to an evening reception within walking distance, should you wish to do so (however, making the most of this stunning beach location is of utmost importance, and an earlier wedding, followed by an afternoon wedding breakfast will allow ample time for you and your guests to enjoy the day).

The outdoor venue allows us a great deal of space to play with and is keeping with the rustic, chic event to bring your guests to life, and allow them to truly relax and experience a very fun and unique atmosphere.

The driftwood archway for your ceremony, and added natural décor is the ideal base to begin planning your special day upon, whilst keeping with the natural surroundings and adding in romantic touches. The smell of the delicious BBQ Buffet on the beach enhances the rustic and natural feeling of the day, with the elegance and sophistication of canapes and a cocktail reception, with flowing cocktail jugs, beer buckets, wine, champagne and the non-alcoholic homemade lemonade and elderflower presse.

Kimberley Garrod Photography

What this stunning venue has to offer:

–          Use of the romantic ‘Wedding Hut’

–          Transportation for the Bride and Bridal party to the venue

–          Elegant white wooden chairs for your ceremony and wedding breakfast

–          Natural driftwood arch and decking where your ceremony will take place on the beach

–          Coastal décor in the Wedding Hut

–          Your choice of music to be played

–          Champagne reception and photographs on the beach (after your ceremony)

–          The limited use of electricity, making the most of the rustic beach style venue, and of the daylight hours

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Completing your day…

[The following prices are based on a party of 200 pax]

 

–          Full day venue hire (10am – 7pm) : £2,400

–          Canape Reception @ £8pp : £1,600

Selection from…

o   Confit of duck with picled peaches en croute

o   Smoked chicken caeser wraps

o   Goats cheese and caramelised onions

o   Bacon and mustard puy lentils

o   Chive pancakes, onion marmalade, and crème fraiche

o   New potato rillettes with blue cheese and olives

o   Smoke salmon and lime aioli

o   Crostini of tomato and basil

 

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–          Beach BBQ Menu @ £26.50pp : £5,300

 

o   Selection of local rustic bread served in buckets on the tables

o   Slow cooked BBQ pulled pork

o   Homemade Burgers

o   Sausages from The Sausage Shed

o   Aromatic seasonal fish served with aubergine relish

o   Roast new potato red onion and parsley salad

o   Homemade coleslaw

o   Mixed green salad

o   Seasonal dressings and chutneys

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–          Beer/Cider Buckets @ £60 per bucket: £960 (18 buckets)

–          Cocktail Choice or Pimms Jugs @18 per jug: £324 (20 jugs)

–          White Wine (Chablis) @ £25 per bottle: £1,560 (65 bottles)

–          Red Wine (Beach House Red) @ £16 per bottle: £1,040 (65 bottles)

–          Veuve Cliquot Yellow Label Champagne @ £45 per bottle: £2,925 (65 bottles)

–          Jugs of Elderflower presses or homemade cloudy lemonade @ £12 per jug: £240 (20 jugs)

–          1L Water Bottles (Still or Sparkling) @ £3 per bottle: £195 (65 bottles)

 

–          VIP Toilet Facilities – £660

 

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–          Ice Cream Bike with choice of flavours

 

–          Marquee Hire prices starting from £2,475 (for 50 pax)

 

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Total: £19,679 (approx.)

 

For more information go to: www.beachweddingsbournemouth.co..uk

[All images from www.beachweddingsbournemouth.co.uk]

 

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Lusty Glaze Beach, Cornwall

Ceremony & Reception Venue

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An exclusive, private beach venue, with the option for entire beach closure, for the day to be completely yours! Set below picturesque cliff tops, this beautiful horse-show cove in Cornwall is an idyllic setting for a romantic wedding, carrying on from morning until night.

The privacy of this location is extremely important and the ability to hire out the entire venue space allows the décor and theme of your day to flow throughout the event space. The rustic, ‘shabby chic’ feel of the decking, the luxury fish BBQ, Cornish treats, and fun chance to make your entrance as Husband and Wife from a cliff top zip wire down to the venue, is exactly the reason why this venue is so special and unique. The simplicity of this venue allows great décor potential and a great deal of spacial awareness – with the use of marquees, romantic fairy lighting and elegant, yet soft, draping linens, this is the ideal place to set up your romantic beach wedding.

The accessibility of Lusty Glaze Beach is limited to 133 steps down the cliff (with breaks in between! – alternative arrangements can be made for those who will have difficulty with these steps), and is an incredible location to feature your wedding photography, with a beautiful sunset and cliff backdrop.

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What Lusty Glaze Beach has to offer:

 

–          Complete privacy

–          Feel the sand between your toes!

–          Dramatic Cliff faces and picturesque sunset

–          Ceremony on beautiful beach decking

–          A memorable event, such as ‘zip-wiring’ from the cliff tops down to your venue, or taking to the jet skis

–          Various accommodation, beach hut community, and activity centre

–          Beach games- rounders, volleyball and even surfing

–          The Cottage – a romantic hideaway for the newlyweds to enjoy

 

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Completing your day…

 

 

–          Reception & Ceremony: £4,600

–          Upper Deck (Exclusive use all day): £2,400

–          Exclusive Beach Section: £600 OR Entire Beach Closure: £24,000

–          Lusty Glaze Restaurant (for extra space): £4,000

–          Canapes @ £7pp : £1,400

Selection from…

o   Crab claws with lemon & garlic mayo dip

o   Beef carpaccio crostini & horseradish cream

o   Feta, Tomato & Olive tartlet

o   Smoked Salmon with cream cheese & chive

o   Pitta & Hummus bites with black olive tapenade

o   Honey & mustard glazed sausages

o   Smoke mackerel pate with red onion chutney

o   Mini lamb kebabs with chilli

o   Fresh fruit & serrano ham

o   Tomato, basil & mozzarella kebabs

o   Kind prawns wrapped in parma ham with chilli dip

o   Stuffed peppadews with cream cheese

 

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–          Luxury Fish BBQ @ £25pp: £5,000

 

Salmon Parcels with lemon, ginger & lime

Game fish kebabs – tuna, swordfish, scallops

Razor clams in garlic and herb butter

Tandoori-Marinated chicken breast

Or

Veggie burgers

Mixed vegetable & halloumi kebabs

Stuffed Mushrooms with spinach and feta

 

Mixed Green Leaf salad with dressing

Tomato, Mozarella & basil salad

Couscous salad with lemon and herbs

Homemade red cabbage coleslaw

Salsa

Garlic & Lemon mayonnaise

Crusty Bread Rolls

 

–          Desserts

o   Build Your Own Eton Mess @ £4pp: £800

o   Cornish Cream Tea @4.50pp: £900

 

–          Evening Snack

o   Pulled Pork Baps @ £5pp: £1,000

o   Nacho Buffet Bar @ £6pp: £1,200

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Total (for part beach hire & excluding drinks): £21,900 (approx.)

 

Total (for entire beach closure & excluding drinks): £45,300 (approx.)

For more information go to: http://www.lustyglaze.co.uk

[All images from www.lustyglaze.co.uk]

 

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The Tudor Barn, Buckinghamshire

Ceremony & Reception

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Although this is not a beach venue, it is an astoundingly beautiful barn that keeps in with the rustic, chic, and elegant feel for the wedding. This unique venue is set amongst 6 acres of luscious green gardens, and is a beautiful setting for an outdoor and indoor event (ideal for utilising both spaces during the day and evening).

The natural, high ceilings of the barn provide so much space in which to build your dream wedding and to decorate accordingly. The rustic wood of the barn, paired with bright white linens, pastels and abundant greenery and flowers will make this space feel like a fairytale setting for your wedding day.

The main barn, garden room, bar area and outdoor terrace and gardens provide plenty of space for a large wedding, with ample parking for your guests. The beauty of this venue is the surroundings, with endless wooded areas, flowers, shrubbery and lawns, the authentic look and feel of The Tudor Barn is a definite contender for your wedding venue list.

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[Image: http://www.oakwoodevents.co.uk]

What The Tudor Barn has to offer:

 

–          A friendly, professional and welcoming team

–          Fantastic caterers – Tudor Catering

–          Advice on all planning aspects throughout

–          Exclusive use of the barn (with one event per day)

–          Complimentary changing room

–          Preferential rates for guests at the nearby Burnham Beeches Hotel

–          Resident DJ available

–          Use of the PA system

–          Complimentary cake knife

–          Luscious green lawns

–          Ceremony and reception venue

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[TerryLee Photography – http://www.terrylee.net]

Completing your day…

 

–          Venue Hire (including: barn hire, linens, tablecloths, drapes, gold banqueting chairs): £3,000

–          Civil Ceremony Charge: £300

–          Canapes @ £7.50pp: £1,500

Selection from…

o   Buckwheat blinis with sour cream and smoked salmon

o   Bruschetta with sundried tomato, pesto & goat’s cheese

o   Cocktail sausages with rosemary and honey

o   Tartlets with curried chicken filling

o   Coustades with smoked salmon, mango, and avocado

o   Coustades with prawns in chilli and coriander dressing

o   Devils on horseback

o   Mini Yorkshire pudding with horseradish and rare beef

 

 

 

 

 

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[www.marksisley.co.uk]

 

 

 

–          Wedding Breakfast @ £38pp: £7,600

 

Warm goat’s cheese salad served on a bed of leaves, pine nuts & balsamic dressing

Salmon en Croute with creamy spinach, herbs and dill mayonnaise

Baby Meringue baskets filled with summer fruits and fresh cream

Heavenly white chocolate cheesecake with fresh strawberries

Coffee

–          Evening Buffet @ £27pp: £5,400

 

Honey Roast Ham with Cider and Raisin Sauce

Oriental Chicken with Mangetout and Bean shoots

Various Savoury Quiches

Hot or cold new potato salad

Tomato, cucumber and basil salad

Mixed leaf salad with croutons and bacon

French bread

Profiteroles with warm chocolate fudge sauce

Or

Fresh Lemon Tart

Coffee

 

 

–          Deluxe Drinks Package @ £24.95pp: £4,990

o   On Arrival – 3 glasses pp of sparkling wine, bucks fizz, pimms, or orange juice

o   With wedding meal – half bottle of pinot grigio or rioja

o   For the toast – one glass of champagne

 

Total (excluding additional drinks): £22,790 (approx.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wedding Planning, Styling & Design: Venues

8 Wedding Reception Site Ideas

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[Pinterest: Pinimg]

  1. Private Homes
  2. Outdoor Garden Marquees
  3. Local town halls
  4. Boats and Cruises
  5. Museum
  6. Country Club/Golf Club
  7. Barn/ Farmhouse
  8. Private Beach Venue

 

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[Pinterest: ‘Barn Wedding’, Upcycled Treasures]

 

5 Things to Keep In Mind When Selecting Your Wedding Venue

  • Is there sufficient seating capacity?
  • How many ceremonies are held at the venue per day?
  • Is your preferred date and time available?
  • Is there suitable access for elderly or disabled guests?
  • Is it within your budget?

 

 

 

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[Pinterest: Plan An Event]

 

 

Site Visit Checklist

ÿ       Is the venue easily accessible to all guests and suppliers?

ÿ       Is the venue ‘event-friendly’?

ÿ       Are there any restrictions?

ÿ       Does the existing venue structure, furniture and decor suit your plans and wedding theme?

ÿ       Will this venue force you to stretch your budget?

ÿ       Do the aesthetics of the venue flow well with your design plans?

ÿ       Is this venue appropriate to all ages of guests?

ÿ       Is there a site technical team to set up the event?

ÿ       Is the space have ample capacity to hold all of the guests?

ÿ       Is this venue of the standard and expectation of your client?

ÿ       What is included in the venue hire fee?

 

 

 

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[Pinterest: Photography Awesome Sauce]

 

Venue Contracts

  1. Rental start and finish times (including cleaning and setup) – it is important to know when you will be able to begin setting up at the venue (i.e. if there is more than one wedding per day) and what time you will need to vacate the area (there is usually a time limit on how late music can be played).
  2. Deposit Amount and Balance Due Date – in order to secure your venue, it is necessary to pay a deposit as soon as possible to ensure your chosen date and time. It is also important to know when the final payment will need to be paid by, and what types of payment the venue will accept.
  3. Cancellation – Make sure that you understand the requirements involved with a cancellation and what costs you may incur. It is usually recommended to take out wedding insurance to prevent financial loss.
  4. Venue Rentals – Discuss and define what is included in the venue fee, and what rentals will incur additional charges. For example, the venue may provide chair covers, chair ties, and table linens – but will there be an additional charge for the setup of these rental items, or will they add an extra cost for the staff having to move chair covers and chair ties from one location to another (i.e. if you are having your ceremony and reception at the same venue)? There may be hidden charges, so be sure to make this very clear.
  5. Usage Restrictions – It is always necessary to read through all the terms and conditions included in your contract, to be sure that you will not face additional charges for having not understood the contract correctly. For example, there may be restrictions on catering, music, marriage ceremonies, and alcohol. Are you allowed to use contract caterers and suppliers (some venues may have health and safety restrictions)? Does the venue have an indoor/outdoor alcohol license? Is the venue licensed to hold civil ceremonies? Are there restrictions on what type of music you can have (i.e. live band, guitarist, DJ etc.) and what time it is allowed to start and finish?

 

 

 

Outdoor Weddings: 3 Challenges

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[Pinterest: A Photo By Ashley Blog]

 

 

Challenge 1: Unlevel Ground

 

To prevent heels stuck in the mud and guests tripping over uneven ground, it would be ideal to set up flooring – whether it be under a marquee or not – to create the illusion of the ‘event space’ for the guests, and to keep the guests within that area. Sufficient and appropriate lighting for the venue will also be important for when guests are moving from one event area to another (i.e. the cocktail reception to the evening reception, or for guests going from the reception area to the bathrooms etc.). Temporary paving and flooring could also be considered to create pathways between event spaces.

 

 

 

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[Pinterest: Kudzu]

 

 

Challenge 2: Lack of toilets/sanitary for guests

 

          If you are having your event in a field, farm, or a more remote outdoor area, it is likely that there will not be toilet facilities there, or that they may not be of the right standard. The main option would be to source portable facilities to the venue area – ensuring there are sufficient facilities for the number of guests (don’t forget you will also need such facilities for catering staff etc.), with the option to create additional sanitary facilities (i.e. wash basins, soaps, towels etc.) which could be presented in a decorative way near to the portable facilities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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[Pinterest: Pinimg]

 

Challenge 3: No/little outdoor lighting

 

          The dark night sky mixed with the bright stars is beautiful and what you imagine for an outdoor ‘under the stars’ style of wedding. However, this is not always realistic – particularly on a cloudy night. If you have an outdoor marquee, then you may have strings of fairy lights strung through the event space, creating a soft and romantic feel, whilst creating the required added light. Pathways could be lit up and defined using lanterns, helping to guide guests to the correct location (you don’t want guests wandering off into a field and getting lost at night as they are trying to find the bathroom facilities!). If the event space features water (i.e. a lake, water fountain, pond, swimming pool etc.) then you could float candles or lighting features in the water, and make use of hanging lanterns in the surrounding space.

 

 

Unique and Unusual Venues

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[Pinterest: destinationweddingmag.com]

 

  1. Private Beach Venue – that ‘sand between your toes’ feel, for a relaxed and laid back, yet elegant wedding. A lounge seating area set up to one side, with cocktail tables in a nearby beach area, with lanterns leading to the see-through tent marquee set up on the sandy beach, so you can watch the stars as you dance the night away.

 

Pros – Quiet; private; relaxed; no restrictions, outside suppliers welcome.

Cons – Costly; not easily accessible; potential problems with the sand and disabled/wheelchair users; weather-permitting; generators may be required; distance from kitchen and toilet facilities; alcohol license may be required.

 

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[Pinterest: The Knot]

 

  1. Barn Venue – a rustic, or elegant décor throughout a beautiful old barn, with high ceilings, fantastic space to play around with décor and theme, and perfect for a private country wedding.

Pros– private; extensive décor potential; all weather conditions; easily accessible, outside suppliers welcome; vast space.

 

Cons – potential poor lighting; distance from kitchen and bathroom facilities; poor wheelchair/disabled access; potential poor sound quality (i.e. echoing); potential music/noise restrictions.

 

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[Pinterest: http://www.katelynjamesblog.com]

 

  1. Field venue at a Private Farmhouse – a laid-back, outdoor wedding surrounded by orchards, trees and greenery set on a vast plot of land to hold either your ceremony or reception venue. Ideal for a rustic, country-style wedding and those who love the outdoors.

Pros – private; low cost; no space limitations; quiet and peaceful; remote; vast greenery and land space.

Cons – accessibility for suppliers and caterers; remote; alcohol license may be required; poor accessibility for disabled/wheelchair users; no bathroom facilities; distance from kitchen to venue.