Congratulations you’re engaged! You’re on glad nine, your fiancée has declared his love and asked you to become his wife, you excitedly talk about the future and your wedding day. You dream about the dress, partying with your friends and of course becoming husband and wife.
But, then the panic sets in. Just how do you plan a wedding, where should you begin? In our fortnightly series we will break down how to organise a wedding like a professional wedding planner.
In our 5th instalment of our planning guide we talk about some of your suppliers in more depth.
Think about what you want from your photos. Do you want an album of modern images or would you prefer to buy your own high street version? Is it vital to have a CD of images to print and share with friends around the world? Will you want traditional posed photos or mainly reportage? Personally I think a good photographer is vital to capture all your memories from the day. Is the photographer willing to work with you and your vision or do they seem set in their ways? There are many styles to choose from traditional, modern, artistic so browse photographer websites to see what style suits you best. Some of my favourites are: Harvey Collard, Kerry Morgan, Lloyd Dobbie, Tim Bowden
Videos are gaining popularity after a decline in recent years. Visit some fairs and do some internet based research. Ask to see actual wedding demos and not a show reel which of course has been edited superbly as a sales tool. Has it been shot in focus and is the editing seamless. What effects have they included, does it add to the film or detract from the footage itself? What is included in the price and what is extra. If you do not want a traditional video then what about Super 8 cine film. It’s very stylish and has a classic vintage feel, this does tend to cost more then standard video/DVD filming.
Of course you will want your guests fully entertained on the day both day and evening, the options are literally endless. To begin will you want any professional singers or musicians for the ceremony? As with everything else check references and demos. Back at the reception the musicians can continue playing or you can book additional entertainment. In the evening a band or disco is the most popular options but to get your thinking caps on here are a few more choices for the day/evening. A good agency will have most of these on their books.
- String quartet
- Opera Singers
- Gospel singers
- Silhouette Artist
- Life statues
- Professional dancers
- Tribute bands
- Party bands
If your venue allows outside catering or you are having a marquee then you need to start looking for good reputable caterers. Does the venue have a list of recommended companies familiar with the venue kitchen & layout? If not look through local wedding magazines, wedding fairs and the internet. Ask whether they have experience of weddings and check their relevant insurance & food & safety certificates. Check what is included in the price and what is extra, for example some companies have a set price including linen, staff and equipment whereas others charge these items separately. How many staff will they have on the day, any less then 1 per table of 10 then start to worry! Ask how long they need to serve your wedding sufficiently and how big they need the catering tent (if needed) should be. And finally have a food tasting nearer the time to choose your menu, cutlery, crockery & glassware.
This is one of those moments you have been dreaming about for years so make the most of it. Make a list of some bridal shops to visit, why not do some local and some in town? Decide who you want to go with you and set a girly date. Start to think about the styles you like and of course dislike but enter this stage of planning with an open mind. The dress style you like is not necessary the style that suits you. Make notes as to what you liked or disliked about the dress so you remember when digesting the day afterwards. If you cannot find one you like then think about browsing US websites, even with shipping and additional seamstress costs it may work out cheaper. Otherwise why not have an individual dress made for you, its not as expensive as you may think. Once the dress has been chosen you need to select a veil, shoes and accessories.
Top Tip – don’t make too many appointments in one day otherwise you will be checking your watch constantly, try to fit in afternoon tea or lunch to discuss the dresses with your Mother or bridesmaids.