Tag Archives: celebration

Wonderful way to make sure your guests RSVP

pre-wedding-photography-in-Melbourne-Australia-11Having people RSVP, on time or at all, is a real problem. I’ve blogged before about RSVPs and people not turning up on your wedding day.

I recently heard about a genius way to make sure that guests RSVP to your wedding. Don’t give all of the information on your invitation! As strange as this may sound. Leave the important details off, the address of the ceremony or the function center details for the reception, or both. People will have to contact you or whomever you choose to get further details about attending the wedding.

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Make sure that you have worked out how you want this information then given later. There are many ways that this can be done.

You could set up a website that is provided to the people that RSVP via an email or a text message so that you can have all of the information ready to go. I’ve blogged before about having a website with information for the guests, you can read it here. You don’t even have to monitor that yourself, you can always have a bridesmaid or one of your family members who is wanting to help be in charge of getting all of the RSVP emails sent to them.

You could send out a second paper invitation or information sheet to them if you prefer the snail mail option. You could have some fun with this by having creative invitations sent as the first invite with the ‘RSVP for more information’.  You could have a video invitation, like Leah and Mark had, that had a second part sent as a link when people responded. My friend had tea towels printed for her wedding invite, you could send something like that out and then send out a second one with all the relevant information on them once you received the initial interest from the guests. Again, this is a way that you can ‘theme’ your wedding to your personalities and you are only limited by your imagination, and time and budget!

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There are so many great ways that you could use this idea to your advantage. Do you think that this is a good way to get guests to respond?

A very big thank you to Love Journal Photography for the use of their images on this weeks blog. Check out their website and have a look at their facebook to see all their latest work.

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Filed under invites, wedding ideas, Wedding Planning, wedding tips

Elliott’s naming day

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A few weekends ago I had the pleasure of conducting the Naming ceremony for a lovely little girl. Elliott’s Mum and Dad decided that her first birthday would be a good day to do her naming ceremony as well. I conducted Mum and Dad’s (Candice and Ashley’s) wedding a couple of years ago, so it was a pleasure and an honour to be able conduct Elliott’s naming day.

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Elliott was given two wonderful sets of godparents and it was lovely to be able to speak about all the reasons that both sets of godparents were chosen along with the special relationship that both couples shared with Candice and Ashley.
It was important to Candice and Ashley to choose people who have each other’s back and who accept friends just for being the people that they are. To show Elliot that it is important to have, and to be, a friend that is on their side through all that life brings. In times of great joy, Elliot will see them celebrate together and in times of sorrow see the support only true friendship can bring.  It was a beautiful and emotional little ceremony that was held at Elliott’s grandparents home. It was the perfect way to appoint her godparents and then everyone got to celebrate Elliot turning One year old.

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How lucky am I to share wonderful events in peoples lives? It really is a wonderful thing to be able to conduct ceremonies like this for people that I have been friends with for so many years like Candice and Ashley, and for people that I just meet through the process of a naming day or a wedding. No matter who the ceremony is for, I always feel honoured to be a part of it.

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Facebook Group for your bridal party

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My friend is getting married soon and she has used Facebook for he planning process in a very smart way. I have blogged about her save the dates and her Bridal shower gift with a difference. I’ve been lucky enough to be included in the group and have had a great time watching the way that all of the bridal party are interacting and giving input in a way that without this page would probably take a lot of meeting up or a lot of phone calls and texts.

All of the bridesmaids and important wedding related people in the life of the bride have been added to the group. Its a closed group so only people involved can see, so that all important information that they don’t want ‘getting out’ is kept within the group. It has made it easy for them to talk about dress styles, catch up dates and when they see a pair of shoes that they are looking at they can take a photo and share it quickly with everyone.

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They have had photos from them trying on dresses to lovely lunches that they have had and is a great way for them to have all of that in one spot without other people getting jealous or feeling like they have been left out of something as only the people within the group can see it.

Its a great way to have people quickly see something or get an opinion really quickly and its free, no costs for texts or phone calls (only the data usage) especially if you have some people in your bridal party who don’t know each other or wouldn’t have their phone number too.

Have you done something like this? Or any other suggestions that would help other Brides and attendants on their wedding planning journey?

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A big thank you to Untamed Images for the use of their photos on the blog this week. You can see more of their work on their website or check them out on Facebook by clicking here.

 

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Getting ready for your wedding together

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For a long time now tradition has been that the Bride and Groom don’t see each other until they reach the ceremony site and are about to be married. Over the years there have been a few new ideas implying that this isn’t the way that it has to be. For example there are ‘first look’ photo shoots. Some people now choose to have their formal portraits done before the ceremony so that they don’t have to go off and have their photos taken between the ceremony and the reception. Sometimes Love letters before the ceremony also have the couple seeing each other before the ceremony takes place.

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Some couples are now deciding that they will get ready together, not worry about tradition, and just get ready at the same venue. Alternatively getting ready where they will be staying that night, so there is no dragging bags from one place to another.
There are good and bad points for this, I think. One of the bad things would be that you miss out on that lovely time that you get to spend with the bridesmaids and groomsmen if you are having them. Some of the weddings that I have been involved in, where I have been a part of the bridal party or spending time with the bride before hand when she is getting ready, is always a lovely and fun experience. Getting make up done, eating fruit platters and generally enjoying each others company until the ceremony.

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Maybe getting ready in your family home was important, you could always both get ready there and have photos taken around your family home especially if your partners family were not close by.
Another popular idea is having a house near or at the wedding location so that all of the bridesmaids and groomsmen can all get ready with you. This way you get the best of both worlds. It could be a great way to have all of the photos done before the wedding ceremony so that you don’t have to have all the between time where you go off and be photographed. You can just have fun and socialise with your guests.

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Some people also feel that it is just such a big day, they know they will feel really nervous and overwhelmed that they just want to get ready with their partner. They know that they are going to be spending a large portion of the day with other people they just want some relaxing quality time with the person that the day is really all about.

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A huge thank you to Love Journal Photography for the brilliant photos on the blog this week. Check out more of their work here. Or check out their facebook page here.

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Having no children invited to your wedding

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Having a ‘no children’ policy at your wedding. It’s always a hot topic and usually there is someone offended. I’m always hearing or reading about people who have very strong opinions on this topic. I have touched on it a little bit when I blogged about Keeping children entertained at your wedding, but what do you think? Don’t the bride and groom have the right to request that there be no children at the wedding?

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I have been talking about this with numerous people. Couples getting married and parents also. The opinions are varied and I can see it from different angles. I can see it from the celebrants point of view, from the couples point of view and as a parent.

From the celebrants point of view, children are lovely and can add a really beautiful element to the wedding ceremony, especially when they are the couples children or a big part in the lives of the couple. They are super cute attendants, but don’t always do what people want them or expect them to do in the wedding. I love an extra cute child in a little suit and tie or a sweet little dress and I love promises being made to children in the wedding and helping join families not just couples together.

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As a parent, things are totally different. For me there are two sides to this ‘coin’. On one side, If I’m off to a wedding, I think about my son. Can he sit still and keep quiet for the wedding? Will it be his nap time? Will he be a maniac on the day and run around like a little wild man? Will I actually be able to listen to what is going on or will I miss out on a lot of it, attending to my child? I know that there are many parents out there that are actually offended that their child isn’t invited to the wedding and if their child isn’t invited then they wont be attending. I don’t really understand that, sure I might have felt this way if I was invited to a wedding when my son was an infant, a sleeping little gorgeous grub, that really only woke to be fed and for a small window at a time. I think it is silly to think that a guest with a tiny weany baby should have to leave their child, (which is some cases is still being breastfed). Lets not cause any undue stress to baby or Mum having to leave her small little person behind for the wedding. Toddlers and small kids are totally different. They get into things, they touch things, fall off things and fall into things. You need 40 eyes and boundless energy to keep up with them. To me I don’t think it is unreasonable to have these children not invited to the wedding.

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What do the couple think? I know that couples don’t say ‘no kids’ just to be nasty or make things more difficult for the parents, but there are so many variables to take into consideration. How child safe is the venue? What time is the wedding? There are so many reasons that there may be that the couple have made this decision. I believe that 99 times out of 100, (or maybe even more) they are not doing this because they don’t like your children, so don’t take it personally. One of my friends is having a wedding at a winery and we have spoken about their no children under 10 rule. I completely understand why they are doing it, but they are still worried about how some people may react. Their reason that they don’t want children there is there is a lake there and they don’t want to worry about what could possibly happen if someone’s child decides that they want to go and explore the water. They don’t want to be worried about other people’s children and let’s be real, crazier things have happened.

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Should it be up to the parents to choose? What about those people who are coming to town from interstate? I can see it from all sides, I’m not sure how I would feel if I travelled interstate or overseas and all the people that I trusted were going to be at the wedding too? Not so bad if you are local, but for me it isn’t even that easy anymore. I can’t just leave my child with anyone now. I can’t just get a baby sitter and hope for the best. For me they have to know how to deal with a type 1 diabetic child. So I can see why some people may make this argument too.

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Another thing to consider is not all parents are equal. There are some parents who do all the right things and make sure that their children are supervised, but there are some parents who like their children to be a lot more ‘free range’ than that and I think that sometimes that is what worries brides and grooms. I think these are the parents that just don’t watch their kids and think that everyone else at the wedding should be keeping an eye out for their children.

What do you think? Are you offended if your children are not invited to a wedding? Did you have or are you having a no child rule at your wedding?

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Thanks to Vision House Photography for the use of their beautiful images. Check out more of their work on their website or like them on Facebook.

 

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Making your guest list

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Most of us would have seen on Facebook or instagram by now this fun guest list manager. Its quite funny and a good idea to have a laugh. It is a good way to remind yourself too that it is your day and you’re (most likely) paying the bill.

Will they make your wedding more fun is an interesting  part of this chart for me, really your wedding is about you and your partner, and you should have the people around you that mean a lot to you, it’s your wedding not a hens or bucks day. Maybe it should say something like, will it be special to have them with you on the day? Or do you want them there to see you and your partner exchange promises? I know that this chart is mainly for a laugh but some of the points have merit, or at least give you something to think about. The part about would normally buy dinner for them, maybe a strange question, but it is something to think about would you have dinner out with them, or your work friends maybe not necessarily do you see them out of work, because there are a few people at my work that I would be happy to spend time with out of work, but I generally just don’t have time, compared with hell no, please don’t let them be going  to the same function as me type people that you work with.

I agree to an extent that if you parents are paying for some of the wedding they do get to have at least a small number of guests that they want added to the list. I think though that they should get to have some say, but really again it is your day. If there is someone that you really don’t want there maybe you can compromise. My mother in law wanted one of her longest friends at my husband and our wedding, but the friend had previously not been the nicest to my husband. We made sure that she wasn’t invited but my mother in law still had her two other best friends and partners invited on the day, we only had 42 guests, and we paid for the vast majority of the day ourselves so we really weren’t keen on having anyone we didn’t like there.

I’ve blogged before about wedding numbers and some of the other issues that you have with deciding on who to invite to your wedding. I don’t think it is really as cut and dry as this chart suggests.  There are always some people on the list that you have to invite, and there are people that you invite knowing that they will not be able to make it on the day.

What do you think? Do you think that it can be as cut and dry and the chart suggests? What were some of the deciding factors that helped you decide if someone made your guest list or not?

 

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Things that guests hate at a wedding

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I know that I am always saying that your wedding is all about you and it should reflect what you want. It’s true it is your day and it should be what you want it to be. Just for a moment though I am going to chat about the things that guests hate at a wedding. It’s not to say that you can’t do what you want and have these things as part of your day but just they are just some things that I have heard or read about people complaining and therefore something to consider.

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Not knowing where they are going

I know with this day and age people have GPS and they have their google maps and their phone, but even then sometimes these things can be unclear. If you are having your reception in a building this doesn’t apply so much. Even so, if a guest can quite easily find where they are supposed to be, lack of signage or anything to direct them can cause panic. If you are getting married in a garden or somewhere that is open to the public, provide a map or have someone near the entrance so that your guests know where to go. It is a great way to stop people becoming part of the processional too, you can have someone who can tell people to wait if the bride has already arrived. This is a great job for a wedding planner if you are having one too.

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Going home hungry

This is a big one. Now not for one moment am I saying that you need to feed people until they are sick and if you are choosing to have just a cake and champagne affair there is nothing wrong with that, but don’t do it at dinner or lunch time. If you are planning just to have snacks or cheese and crackers, make sure that it is timed appropriately. Most people wont eat lunch or dinner before going to a wedding function if it is expected to go over lunch or dinner. If someone has their company requested for an afternoon tea, they will not be expecting a main meal. It’s then their own issue if they don’t eat lunch before they arrive. It’s just sad to hear that people say that they went to the McDonalds drive through after a wedding dinner as they were still hungry, especially when you know that the couple have spent a fortune on their venue and the meal for all of their guests. I know that I attended a wedding about 3 years ago at a beautiful function centre. I don’t remember what my meal was, but I remember it was lovely and I left feeling full and content. It isn’t that often that you remember exactly what you ate a bit down the track, but you do remember the wedding where the food was terrible and you had to make yourself some toast when you got home because you were so ravenous. Unless it is something that is really original and something that was brilliant. (see the blog about Courtney and Tim’s wedding, now that was some memorable food!)

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A badly spent budget

This ties in with the last one I guess. If you have spent thousands of dollars on the centrepieces for the tables that people are sitting at, but they only have 3 small portions of finger food. They may feel that the decorations were lovely but that they went home hungry. People won’t remember what they ate but they will remember if the food was good and filling. People will only remember that it was good, maybe skip some of the more expensive things that are overlooked and make sure people have enough to eat.  It isn’t always about the expensive sit down meal, but thinking of ways to get the best amount of quality for your budget.  When I had my wedding I decided that I wanted a sit down meal over finger food. That meant that money had to come from somewhere. We could have invited double the amount of people to our wedding if we had a finger food option, but I wanted better food for less people.  Some of the loveliest weddings that I have been to have had some outside the box options for catering. Marika and Joel had some amazing tapas served at their wedding and then had people come in and cook up huge delicious serves of paella.

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A reception that takes place HOURS after the ceremony

Again, I’m always one for using a professional photography, in the end that is one of the only things that you have left of your day, but a good photographer shouldn’t need numerous hours between the ceremony and the reception, if you want all kinds of fancy photography, in different locations maybe think about a first look photo shoot or talk to your photographer about the options on what you can fit into the time frame. One wedding that I attended had 3-4 hours in between the wedding and the ceremony. It is just very difficult to expect people to hang around or spend their time drinking at a pub close by, especially if they are from out of town and not too sure where to go or what to do.  A lot of the time your guests are dressed up and not really wanting to go and do a spot of shopping between.

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Being forced or pressured to dancing

This is something that I personally hate. I love watching the couple do their first dance together and understand that there are a lot of people who love to dance. That is wonderful. It’s when the MC or other guests at the wedding try to make you dance that it really makes me cross. I’m not against dancing and sometimes will love to get up and have a dance, but when the music is pumped so loud that you can’t speak to any of the other guests, this is really annoying as a guest.

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Having no place to sit

When it comes to your reception, even if you are having a finger food type affair, most people want to be able to sit so they can chat and enjoy other peoples company, it is difficult if there are a very limited number of chairs as most people will do the right thing and leave them for elderly guests or guests with special needs. The only other thing than having no where to sit is having to sit near people that you don’t get along with and that is a topic for a whole different blog post.

What is something that you really hate when attending a wedding?

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A very big thank you to Kirralee for the use of her stunning photos on the blog this week. Check out more of her work on her blog here and you can find her on facebook here.

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