Monthly Archives: May 2015

Poem to a Parent

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I recently conducted a wedding where the Bride had a wonderful idea (read the blog about it here). She had me read a poem to her Dad once he had walked her down the aisle. Before he sat down, a poem was read that thanked him for all he had done for and all he had taught his daughter, it was a beautiful and touching moment. There were quite a few tears shed already so early in the ceremony. A very proud moment for her Dad and a lovely way to say some things to your Dad, publicly.

This got me thinking about all of the people that you could do this for. I don’t mean have 7 or 8 people that you read letters out to, if there are that many people that need a special thank you, it is better if you do this in a different way. However, if there are people in your life that have done really wonderful things for you it can be a lovely thing to do in your ceremony. For example if your Grandmother had raised you, it could be an opportune time to say a few lovely words to let her know that it has shaped you into the person that you are.

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It could also be a really touching way to say something about someone that has passed away. (I have blogged about this before, this can be an emotional and touchy subject). It could be a great way to say something about a very important person in your life that is no longer around to share your day with you.

You can also do this without it being public. What a nice thing to do to write a poem or just a heartfelt letter to someone special on your day, thank your Parents or maybe thank your Mother and Father in law for making your partner the person that you love so much.  You could also print something in your order of service booklets if you are having them, so that you can say some things but don’t really have to say it out loud. Especially if you think that there may be too much emotion involved.

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Do you have any other original ideas of ways to thank people that are very special to you on your wedding day?

A big Thank-you to Love Journal Photography for the use of their photos on this weeks blog. Check them out on facebook or head on over to their website to see what they have been working on.

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Mother of the Bride, and Parents of the Groom

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Mum of the Bride and Parents of the Groom seem to get a little bit left out sometimes when it comes to the wedding day. Some don’t really seem to mind that much an are honestly happy just to be there and see that their child’s day is going according to plan. However there have been a few times in the last little while that I have heard murmurs about the Father of the Bride getting all the glory. He gets to walk her down the aisle and he gets to travel in the car with her. Sometimes the Mum of the bride is ok with it all and sometimes clearly she is a bit put out.  Sometimes the parents of the Groom don’t really have any involvement or don’t really seem to be included either. There are ways around this and there are a number of ways that you can include them in your special day.

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Have both your parents walk you down the aisle.

This is simple, and it doesn’t take any extra effort, it just means that you can have both of them with you and they can both feel a part of your day. You can also have the groom enter with his parents. There is no rule to say that he has to be at the front waiting for the bride, he can enter any way he likes. You could also have the grooms parents and the mother of the bride seated by special people just before the bride arrives so that they can be taken to their seats just before everything is about to begin. In a wedding I conducted recently the Mother of the bride was met by her father and taken to her seat by him, which is a lovely way for the Grandparent to be included and probably brings back memories for the Grandfather of his own daughters special day too.

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Make special mention of them in the ceremony.

There are many ways that you can do this, you can mention something special about them, or consider having a candle ceremony which is a great way to include family, (read my blog about candle ceremonies here), you can also have a section in the wedding where you can ask both sets of parents if they are willing to support the marriage rather than a traditional giving away of the bride. (I’ve blogged about this also) Or you can make mention of them during the ceremony and speak of their commitment to each other and how it has inspired you or something along those lines. You could also have a reading that is dedicated to them.

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Have parents sign the marriage register.

This one is a great way to have any of the parents do something that is really special. (Or anyone that is close to you and not in your bridal party) Have them be the witness on all of the legal paperwork. The person who signs doesn’t have to be in the wedding party, they just have to hear the entire ceremony and hear you exchange your vows. (don’t choose your cousin who has a newborn baby, it will be hard if she has to pop out for part of the ceremony) I have conducted a few weddings where parents have been the witness and even had some people choose their Grandparents to include them.

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Have the Mum of the Bride or one of the Grooms parents do a reading.

This is a lovely way for parents to be included, I recently conducted a wedding where the grooms Grandmother read a reading. They didn’t know what she was going to say and they just left it up to her. It was a lovely moment and something special for the grooms side of the family to be included. She was really honoured to be involved. This is a great way to include mums and parents of the groom, you may choose the reading for them or let them choose something close to their heart.
Have you been to a wedding where you felt that all important people were a part of the day? How did the couple achieve this?

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A big shout out to Vision House Photography for the use of their stunning photos on this weeks blog post.  Take a look at their website here. Follow them on facebook to keep up to date with their latest shoots.

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Further thoughts on unplugged weddings

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I have blogged before about unplugged weddings and have heard a lot of discussion on the topic. I recently conducted a wedding where the couple were very specific about having an unplugged wedding. Before the bride entered the ceremony site I said :
(Groom) and (Bride) ask you to all  to please take a moment to check that your mobile telephones and all of your electronic devices are switched off. Please do not spend the ceremony today watching through a phone or camera, please be in the moment, give it your attention fully and enjoy what is a very special and sacred moment in (Groom) and (Bride’s) lives.

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After I said these words, I heard murmurs throughout the guests, one even said. “Really? That’s weird” to the person sitting next to them. I didn’t really know how to feel about it. It doesn’t bother me if they think that I’m weird or what I’m saying is something that they find weird, but I didn’t know how to feel on behalf of the couple. It was their wishes not mine. I really don’t mind if people take a million photos or not a single one. The day isn’t about me. It is about the two people that are exchanging vows on the day. The people that are becoming married that invited them to the wedding, that have asked it. I was annoyed that their guests didn’t respect what they wanted. Admittedly the ‘that’s weird’ girl wasn’t one of the people that continued to photograph throughout the ceremony. There were numerous people and not just a couple of sneaky quick pic’s. (Although I’m sure the very experienced photographer that they hired, got enough shots for everyone) People still continued with lots of flash photography.  If I was going to be rude enough to continue to photograph when the people who’s wedding it was had expressly asked not too, I think I would at least turn the flash off the camera so that it wasn’t blindingly obvious.

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Should this sort of thing be printed on programs? I’m not sure if this is something that needs to be told to people in advance, on the programs or possibly on the invitations. Or a chalk board that the page boy carries.

Should I have been annoyed on their behalf? Maybe it is just because I get to know these people and I want things to go exactly how they want it. I just hope that they were ok with it all. Was my wording not clear enough? Is it something that needs to be spelled out more than that? Have you been to an unplugged wedding? What are you thoughts?

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Thank you again to Betty and Keith from Untamed Images, for their lovely images on this weeks blog. Have a look at their website or follow them on Facebook to be kept up to date with their most recent weddings.

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Elissa and Michael

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Elissa and Michael were married on a lovely (but very hot) Friday in February at Mitchelton Winery in Nagambie. What a fantastic day it was.  It was a stunning day by the river and the gorgeous decked area that they had for the ceremony was breathtaking.

Elissa and Michael’s love began around 7 years ago, Michael was living in London, and Elissa was traveling all around Europe with her friend Jo. They were staying with Jo’s brother who happened to be Michael’s housemate.  Michael remembers thinking that Elissa seemed nice, but maybe a little shy. Elissa thought that Michael was cute, maybe a bit out of her league. Especially with their obvious differences in their taste of music. She didn’t think that he would be interested in a girl like her. Obviously Elissa wasn’t too shy and Michael was interested in a girl like her, and together they have come a long way through the last 7 years. There were times they thought that they might not make it, but they have grown and learnt together over these times and have strengthened this wonderful bond that they share with one another.

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Michael says that Elissa is always positive and she is always patient with him. She is friendly and talkative and open to new experiences, like going to his family reunion without him and not having met any of them yet. Michael knows and appreciates that she has always been there for him before anyone else. Elissa said that she loves Michael’s heart and his passion. She says that he has a heart of gold that never falters and he has a wonderful passion for things, especially music. Anything new Michael discovers, he becomes engrossed in and puts everything of himself into it. He is loyal and passionate and has an uncanny ability to defuse heated situations. His calm nature can be infectious.

Elissa and Michael had 6 attendants each, which is a lot of people to keep organised. Michael and some of his groomsmen arrived in a fantastic vintage valiant. Elissa had such lovely ladies around her for her special day, they were all so fantastic and friendly. Usually I don’t really have that much to do with the attendants, but all of Elissa’s spoke to me during the day or at the rehearsal and were all truly lovely. They all wore different shades of green and all wore dresses that suited their personal style. Elissa was a stunning bride who would probably look great in whatever she wore as not everyone would be able to pull of wearing a dress like she did. I loved that they had the wheat bouquets, it all just matched perfectly.

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Michael and Elissa have spent time in the last 7 years having fun together, travelling and making each other laugh. Elissa fondly remembers travelling to Dublin and Denmark together. This is when she realised that Michael was her favourite person to travel with. He is always taking her to places that she’d never think to go and taking her out of her comfort zone, but she always knows that it will all be ok. A perfect example of this is one of Michael’s fond memories, the time that he took Elissa to a heavy metal concert in Brixton, London. She had never been to anything like it before and Michael remembers her reactions to the clothing, the people and the event as a whole was priceless.

Michael proposed to Elissa after a wonderful Anzac day, when they had watched Michael’s Dad march wearing Michael’s Grandfather, Brian’s medals. That evening Michael played the biggest gig of his life, at the Palace in Melbourne. They had a fantastic day and night and when they finally got home at 3am they were talking about what a wonderful day that they had just experienced. This when Michael asked Elissa to marry him. They then proceeded to jump in a cab to the airport to fly to Sydney.

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They had some wonderful moments during the ceremony, Michael’s Nan did a reading and shared some beautiful words for the couple. But not everything went to plan on their day. We had issues with the PA system that the venue supplied and we had a heat affected bridesmaid pass out mid ceremony. (She was ok, and even came back before the end of the ceremony, Brownlow medal worthy effort there I might add). Even with all these things to throw us, Elissa and Michael took it in their stride. They obviously made sure that their friend was ok, but still managed to have a really beautiful ceremony and they shared some lovely personal heartfelt vows. They didn’t let any of these things take away from the promises that they made to each other.

What a wonderful way to spend a Friday afternoon. I can’t think of anything better than making truly lovely people husband and wife.

Thank you to Roberto Bossio, who was photographing and JL and the crew from JLB The Studio for the use of their images. Check them out at JLB The Studio, Click here to see their website.  Check out the website of Mitchelton Wines too, such a lovely view of the river. Nice wine too I am told.

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Aimee and Johnno

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Aimee and Johnno were married on a beautiful February day. The forecast was for 36 degrees, but luckily it wasn’t too sunny. They were married at the lovely Toorongo River Chalets, which are out in Noojee. It is a lovely drive through some really winding roads and through some amazing forest. The Toorongo River Chalets have a couple of really beautiful sites for a ceremony. The spot that Aimee and Johnno chose was just stunning. It was by part of the River where the water flowed loud enough to be lovely and relaxing, but not too loud that you couldn’t hear the ceremony over it.

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The ceremony was set up beautifully and there were so many small details that had been carefully thought of. There was a personalised aisle that had Aimee and Johnno’s name and their wedding date printed onto it.  Aimee and Johnno had some really beautiful touches to their day that made it so personal and obviously very ‘them’. Johnno and all of his groomsmen arrived in trucks, you could hear them coming a fair way off. They looked amazing with their ribbons and all shined up. All of the boys had their lovely suits matched with grey havaiana thongs. Aimee and Johnno’s son was wearing the most adorable little suit matching all of the guys. Aimee had her three sisters and three of her friends in her bridal party. It was so lovely to see the love that these sisters share and the joy and excitement that they felt sharing this day together. Their dresses were a stunning coral colour. I don’t think I have seen a wedding were bridesmaids, all wearing the same dress, have had that dress style suit them all so well.

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Aimee and Johnno’s love started about three years ago. Their first date was a cracker. Johnno fell asleep in the cinema. What is truly impressive about this first date is that this is when Aimee knew that he was the one for her. Aimee could see that Johnno was a big joker and it didn’t take her too long to notice that there was so much more to Johnno than the funny and joking guy that he is. Aimee and Johnno thought that it would be a bit of a laugh to stir up Angelo and tell him that they were dating. This suited Johnno as that was what he was wanting anyway. In the beginning of their relationship, Johnno was doing interstate express which meant that they didn’t get to spend a lot of time together. After this first date he left for work for 3 weeks. Each day that he was gone, Aimee kept falling more in love with him. They couldn’t even wait until he came back to declare their love for each other. They just knew it was meant to be.

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As time went on they decided to start their own business to enable Johnno to spend more time at home.  After about 12 months into their relationship Johnno decided that Aimee was the one for him and proposed. Aimee told me that thinking back on the moment she knew that Johnno was really nervous, but she had no idea what he had planned. It happened in their driveway, Aimee said “I could see how much love he had for me in his eyes, I will never forget how he looked at me.”

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You could see the love in Johnno’s eyes the moment that Aimee began walking towards the ceremony with her dad. Aimee entered the ceremony to ‘Like only a Woman Can’ by Brian McFadden  (what lovely lyrics, check it out)  and the emotion was evident. (I love that Aimee knew how she wanted to enter the ceremony and knew exactly in the song the moment she wanted to start walking down the aisle, absolutely the most perfect timing ever!!)  There were quite a few tears shed. Aimee had me read a beautiful poem to her Dad once they arrived at the ceremony site. This was a really beautiful touch and again created more tears.  Not only did Johnno and Aimee promise to love each other they made promises about their family and promises to their son.  It was really lovely to be able to formalise their family without drawing too much attention to their little one, but still acknowledging how much of a huge gift that they felt he had been to one another. One thing that really stood out to me was when I asked about the qualities that they wanted in their marriage, Aimee and Johnno said that they are not followers. They want their marriage to have their own special qualities that comes from what they each bring to the relationship.

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I know I say it all the time but I am so lucky to share these moments with people, and with this beautiful family. I have now been lucky enough to share two weddings and a baby naming so far. It is really lovely to keep seeing these people who allow me to share really sacred wonderful moments with their family. I look forward to more events that I get to share with these truly wonderful people.  I learn more about them all after each event and meeting. You will never meet a more loving bunch of sisters either, the excitement that they felt for Aimee on her special day was just beautiful.

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You can check out the website for Toorongo River Chalets here. A big thank you to Bride2be photography for the photos from Aimee and Johnno’s day. Check out their website here and their facebook page here.

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