Posts Tagged ‘planning’

Despite being watched by 2 billion people worldwide, there were touches thoughout the royal wedding day which made it personal.

Take history down the aisle. Make Granny’s day and borrow jewellery or accessories to wear on your big day. There may not be a 1936 Cartier tiara in the family safe, but a delicate locket or earrings can complete an outfit and incorporate family history as your ‘something borrowed’. The silk bridal bag I carried was first taken down the aisle in the mid 1800’s, and my necklace was a gift between my husbands grandparents.

Write your own prayers or vows. They may not have had the liberty to write their own vows, instead opting for the traditional anglican wedding service, but during his address at the royal wedding the Bishop of London read out a prayer that William and Kate had written for the start of their marriage. A truly intimate act, in writing a prayer together you will discuss what your hopes and expectations are for the rest of your lives and your roles towards each other. Not only does it reveal your hearts to your guests, but you can read it over throughout your marriage to bring it back to basics.

Follow family traditions. Is there a flower that has been used in brides bouquets through your family? Perhaps not a family mertyl bush that Queen Victoria first used for her bouquet… Instead of laying your bouquet on the tomb of the unknown soldier is there a family grave that has been honoured by brides through the family. Ask your parents and grandparents about their big days and pick the aspects that you would like to start as a new tradition. It will be fun just looking through all those all photos and hearing the romantic stories over a cup of tea…

Annual reminder. The tree lined aisle from Westminster abbey will be replanted in Highgrove and the strawberry and Lily of the Valley plants donated to charity. Use trees or flowers in your decorations that can be planted afterwards and will remind you of your big day whenever they flower, or fruit! Give each guest a favour of a potted bulb that will flower during the season of your anniversary to remind them of your big day. Make sure you reserve some for your garden or window box too!


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Are you a to-do-lists girl? Maybe you like to cut and stick pictures to make mood boards? Or do you creatively doodle ideas in a wedding notebook?

Do you have a thick wedding planning notebook that goes with you everywhere, or have you got some excel spreadsheets on a memory stick that make an appearance when you are planning together at the weekend?

Photos this week of Kate Middleton’s lunch with Camilla at the Berkley Hotel show Prince Williams bride-to-be making notes in a slim red notebook. As an Art History student and aspiring photographer I imagine Kate to be very creative – lets hope that royal protocol doesn’t stifle some innovative ideas that she may be sketching out…

When I was planning my (sorry, OUR) wedding, I loved browsing magazines and websites for ideas. I was never going to buy into the high-society wedding projected in many of the bridal glossies, but every-so-often there was a little something I thought I could recreate within our budget, or make it myself. The page was duly ripped out and stuck in the pages of my wedding notebook…

The notebook came with me at weekends to my fiances house so we could get on with bits of planning. There were also guests lists, information on suppliers etc saved on my memory stick… If we have done bits of wedding planning from our respective bases during the week this was then collated so we could have all the up-to-date stuff together… phew! (We did make sure we had weekends off – where talk of the wedding planning was banned to concentrate on US!)

Browsing websites in my lunch hour was fun, but tricky to get the images and info into my book as it involved printing and getting them home. The interactive online wedding planner Wedding Notebook came from this conundrum – I loved the idea of an online version of the traditional wedding notebook where you can make moodboards with images from websites and have a central place to tick off your wedding to-do-list that bride and groom-to-be can access from their respective workplaces or homes.

Keeping you organised, without reducing the creativity and fun, Wedding Notebook is a handy place to plan and create your wedding, including a personal wedding website to communicate all your wedding info to your guests, and an online gift list organiser to have gifts from anywhere – no restriction to one department store – and can include honeymoon vouchers, charity giving and gift experiences.

Register free for Wedding Notebook

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We all know that if you so much as whisper the word ‘wedding’ to a supplier the price suddenly shoots up, especially with those dedicated to only serving the wedding industry.

Surely there must be an untapped resource of very talented people out there who can make great cakes, take gorgeous photos and play the funky music… and there is – Students!

Someone studying for a music or photography degree spends 5 days a week (if not more) dedicated to perfecting their talent, and usually is looking to earn some pennies to go towards their studies (and extra curricular activities…). Ok, they may be lacking in the experience of having done lots of weddings specifically, but for certain aspects of the wedding that is not so important, and the price difference can often make it worth it.

A fashion student can make the adjustments to your dress that the shop is asking £££ for.
Your young cousin with Grade 8 piano could play as you walk down the aisle or during reception drinks.
If you are looking for something different for your photographs look for a photography student who enjoys playing with light and trying new things…Their portfolio will give you an idea of what they can do.

At our wedding we had an 8 piece funk band made up of students – they put on a fantastic set, got everyone up dancing and you could tell they were having a great time too…

So, how to tap into this resource…
– Ask around – friends of friends, who do you know who is still studying and ask if they can recommend anyone.
– Try the new site SchoolyWeds which is a directory of creative and talented students offering their services.

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Come and get inspired for your forthcoming wedding at UK Aware this April.

From organic wine suppliers to natural mosquito repellants for your honeymoon, there is a wealth of information and ideas for your wedding at UK Aware, plus a dedicated Eco-Chic Weddings speaker session on Saturday 17th April.

An panel of experts in planning ethical and green weddings and honeymoons will be presenting inspirational ideas and answering your questions on all aspects. The panel includes:

– Jen Marsden, author of ‘Green Guide to Weddings
– Katie Fewings, founder of Ethical Weddings
– Niki Clarke, founder of Wedding Notebook
– Laura Greenscape, founder of EcoEscape
– *A soon-to-be-announced special guest*

The UK Aware show, held at London Olympia, is the largest show dedicated to showcasing sustainable lifestyle ideas and suppliers. From the Green motors expt and massive fashion clothes swap, this years show will also include a fashion show by stylist to the stars, Lupe Castro.

Here are some of the great suppliers who can help you with your wedding:
– Organic wines from Vintage Roots
– Plan your honeymooning travels with EcoEscape (who also know some great UK wedding venues)
– Get naturally covered for the tropical trip with Incognito mosquito repellant (remember them from Dragons Den?)
– Browse gifts for your independent gift-list at the Traidcraft stand
– Get your skin looking glorious with a natural skincare regime from Tamu

SAVE £4 – Get your tickets to the show for a discounted £6

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A wedding? I don't know what you're talking about...

A wedding? I dont know what you're talking about...

In today’s Guardian Rachel Holmes lets you into the secrets of her wedding planning – and it mostly focusses on eliminating the word ‘wedding’ from your searching.

Where in the past weddings followed traditions and certain elements were expected, we are now seeing a rise in DIY weddings and events that are completely unique to the characters involved. You are not expected to follow the path set for you by big budget magazines, but are free to plan YOUR day to what you want. The usual ‘first dance’ and ‘cutting the cake’ can be emitted and more unique elements introduced.

What Rachel and many other brides-to-be want is a big party and often searching for vendors and suppliers solely by the tag ‘wedding’ can not only restrict the selection, but also push the price tag up unnecessarily.

Do you really need ‘ bridesmaids dresses’ when just gorgeous dresses may not only fit the budget better, but are more likely to be worn again and thus giving much better value for money.

If you have your mind set on a certain thing – don’t settle for the first price you are given. This is definately my top tip. I tried on my wedding dress in a London boutique & fell for it immediately…and then realised that no way was I going to be able to make it myself (as per my original plan). So one day I found a list of stockists for that brand and set about ringing them one after the other, quoting the last price I was given – and managed to knock over £1000 off the price tag, picking it up from a shop much nearer to where the actual event was being held – perfect!

Get creative making favours & decorations. Image: Sanna Wicks

Many of the services offered under the tag ‘weddings’ are not to hard to do yourself, you are literally paying for the convenience of having someone do it for you. So if you have the time get friends and family baking, cutting, sewing and sticking – it’s great fun in groups over a bottle of wine… They will love being involved in your day, and takes some of the pressure off you. It just takes organisation!

Which is where Rachel’s next tip comes in – make lists and more lists, and feel the satisfaction when you cross things off. Using an interactive planner such as Wedding Notebook will allow you to keep track of everything including guests RSVP’s, the budget, and a general to-do-list of what needs to be done when.

Having a personalised website for the occasion will give guests the low-down on what they need to bring, wear and all the details of where to go for the big day without you printing off hundreds of trees-worth of paper instructions. Let them know about the ‘guess the honeymoon destination’ competition to win big prizes on the day.

Read Rachel’s full article in the Guardian

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As part of our ‘Advice from the Experts’ feature, venue stylists Pebble in the Pond have joined us as our style experts, giving you the advice you need to think through and develop your wedding style. Here’s Emma to give you the spotlight on getting started.

PIPteacups“When we sit down with our bride and grooms for our initial ‘get to know’ you meeting over a cup of coffee or two, we like to get under the skin of who you are as a couple – the best weddings in our view are when every detail reflects who you both are, creating that individual, unique day that no other couple could host.  We, being extremely nosy, like to get to know the following…

How much is the day about you two and how much about your family and friends?  Bringing touches of your family and friends into the day is a lovely way to make everyone feel welcome.  The family will love sweet peas from your grandma’s garden in vintage style tea pots to decorate the tables or dad’s home grown lavender sprigs tucked into a napkin.

What do you as a couple love doing?  Music fans, why not recraft old music sheets into cones to hold real petal confetti.  Teenage sweethearts?  How about some old school nostalgia with small, reclaimed blackboards to display table numbers and your table plan and recycled glass platters filled with old fashioned sweets – 80s disco optional!

PIPivyThink about where you are getting married and how you can make your day empathetic to that.  Getting married in a place piled high with history?  Transport your guests back in time by having a high tea served upon vintage crockery with china cake stands laden with goodies.Ivy from the garden is wonderful around candlebras and as a napkin decoration.  If the venue has a kitchen garden or fruit trees, would it be possible to offer some wonderful produce as take home gifts?  ‘Grow your own’ seed packets make gorgeous favours.  Getting married by the sea?  Decorative driftwood can make interesting tablecentres or why not use pretty shells at your place settings?

PIPorangeIn planning a ‘greener’ wedding obviously seasonal is key and something we always bear in mind – there’s nothing more refreshing than arriving at an early spring wedding to be greeted at your table by ribbon wrapped, terracotta pots filled with scented narcissi after a long, dark winter.  Likewise at an early December wedding, we can’t resist throwing in a touch of the ‘C’ word – cinnamon bundles tied with organic cotton lace, fragrant dried orange slices or vintage style tea cups filled with soy wax candles….”

How the Pebble in the Pond service works

Pebble In The Pond logoHere at Pebble in the Pond, we can help you with as little or as much decoration and detail as you require – we pride ourselves on working with you to develop your own ideas, as well as throwing in a few of our own, to make your wedding as unique as you are.

We are a wedding venue stylist and have a wide assortment of beautiful accessories to compliment your day.  These range from organic cotton tablecloths and vintage style print and lace table runners through to recycled glass centerpieces, vintage style crockery (tea cups and saucers, tea pots, cake stands etc), candlesticks, baskets – the list goes on.

All the items are for hire however we also offer a styling service where we can come and set up your venue the day before or the morning of your wedding so that you can enjoy your day, confident that when you arrive at your chosen venue it will look fantastic.

We also offer a wonderful range of unique and individual handmade favours which can be personalised to you.

In everything we do we try to be as environmentally friendly as we can.  As many of our materials as possible are organic, reclaimed, fair-trade or locally sourced.  We support local artists in the creation of our wonderful pieces and we give 5% of our profits to charity.

Styling by Pebble In the Pond

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Big Green Wedding FayreWhen I was planning my wedding 3 years ago I spent hours trawling the internet to find just the suppliers & ideas that were light on the environment but full on style.

These days are behind us with a range of specialised websites giving us everything we need – and now there is the chance to see a whole host of like-minded people all under one roof at the Big Green Wedding Fayre.

This weekend is the long-awaited one stop event for planning your wedding in an earth friendly way with the Great big green wedding fayre. On Sat 5th and Sun 6th Sept, Crosby Hall near Liverpool will play host to an array of wedding suppliers. Register in advance and receive a goody bag on arrival, plus the chance to win a luxury eco Spa! Highlights of the weekend include a glam catwalk show from Oxfam Bridal, workshop by ethical jewellers CRED and beauty demonstration by The Body Shop Home

Big Green Wedding Suppliers

Images: Dress from Oxfam Bridal, Jewellery made by Rosie Weisencrantz, Marquee from Eco-Event management, fair trade cupcakes from Little Cake Heaven

Ticket offer: The lovely people at Ethical Weddings are offering you 2 tickets for just £8 (usually £6 each). To reserve your place and claim the offer, visit the Great Big Green Wedding Fayre website and quote ‘Ethical Weddings’.

Liverpool pedi-cabIf you are near Liverpool then why not pop along and see what the green wedding fuss is all about. Get yourself to Hall Street Station on the Northern line and a pedi-cab from Liverpool Pedi-cabs will take you the rest of the way in carbon-less style!

For the most up-to-date details check out the facebook page dedicated to the event.

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