Wedding Day Disasters

We’ve all been there, everyone has at least one horror story from a wedding that they’ve been too, some are avoidable and unfortunately some are not so be prepared!

Weather

“Crazy winds pulled our reception tent out of the ground and all of the table arrangements fell over. Even our wedding cake blew away!” Claire

Unfortunately there really is nothing we can do about the weather, all you can do is laugh about it and try and ride it through. Whether it means your wedding planner following you around with a giant golfing umbrella while her assistant scopes all your dress up in their arms in the rain or shovelling out paths for you in the snow.

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Images by S6 Photography

Cake

“Somebody dropped our entire wedding cake on the ground before we even got a chance to taste it. We still don’t know who it was, but it’s funny to laugh about now.” Vineeta

Throughout my years as a wedding planner I can safety say that I have a solid 95% rate of successful weddings, and that unfortunately that 5% where there has been a problem, those problems have been pretty spectacular and always pretty much involved the cake…

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One wedding I did, instead of a cake, they decided to have a profiterole tower, being the little piggy that I am, was so excited to see this amazing tower arrive, profiteroles stacked high and covered from top to bottom in white chocolate with beautiful chocolate roses throughout the tower. It looked stunning.

Now the wedding was in a marquee in July, although there was air conditioning, eventually  there was a faint smell of melting chocolate throughout the marquee, despite rearranging the air con units and fans to help keep the tower cool, when we eventually began to cut into it we discovered that it had in fact melted from the inside and in the end the only way to serve the cake was in tea cups with a spoon!

We’ve had another cake that was made by the bride herself, it arrived on the day wrapped tightly in tin foil, after setting it up in the right location, we loosened up the tin foil to make sure it didn’t sweat as again it was a very hot day in a marquee, later on that evening, when cutting it up, we found that sometime during baking and before decoration a good couple of hundred ants had found their way into the cake!

A final cake disaster I’ve encountered involved a lot of pins, now i’m used to a couple of pins, maybe for decoration or to hole ribbon onto the cake for easy removal later, i’m however not used to the entire cake being full with up to around 100 pins pretty much holding the entire cake together! After my head chef not willing to serve the cake to guests, just incase there where more that we hadn’t found, and then telling the Bride, we also discovered that in fact that flavours of the cake where all wrong too!

Just make sure you go with a reputable baker for your big day, ask for recommendations and testimonials to confirm you have made a good choice.

Unruly Guests

Ann in Brighton, East Sussex:

There’s always going to be that one guest, hopefully not a family member and hopefully not to chaotic that you will notice…

 

Outdoor Ceremonies

For all those that know me, know that I love love love an outdoor ceremony. Maybe its all the florals that tend to be involved or maybe its that I didn’t get my outdoor ceremony, so deep down still pine for it!

Saying your I do’s is all about embracing your love together so embrace the beauty of your venue and get outside!

Embrace your inner child and drape beautiful fabric, just like you did with your net curtains and pretended it was your veil…

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Or go all out with florals, either in arch form or with your aisle. Make a statement…

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It doesn’t have to be a big wow, you can still make a statement with smaller accents for your ceremony…

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Or hows this for some all out, unique beauty…

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For more amazing inspiration, check out our Outdoor Ceremony board!

 

{Wedding} Leanne & Jack

We’re having some technical issues over at The Bottom Drawer Bridal today and today’s at home wedding inspiration blog post is a little behind schedule!

So in the meantime, here’s the gorgeous at home wedding of Leanne & Jack, from Rebel Heart Photography!

Rebel Heart Photography

I Love Small, Intimate Weddings!!!

Leanne & Jack’s friendly gathering of their nearest and dearest being no exception. They only had 30 guests made up of their children, close family and friends, but boy did they make the best of their special day. Starting with an intimate ceremony at the King’s Lynn Town Hall, I just love the ornate chandeliars and massive old paintings in there. Leanne looked elegant in her Phase Eight wedding gown and beautiful boutique from the Flower Corner on London road, King’s Lynn.

After the ceremony it was so hot and bright unside that we decided to take a few group shots in the stone room of the Town Hall, before walking to the Riverside restaurant for a scrumptious meal. Being such a small select party, everyone sat around the one long table, like one big happy family, which they were.

After the meal, the kids…

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What Planners Save and Splurge on…

No matter what your Wedding budget there are all things that some people spend and then save on and who better than professional wedding planners to help you get the most out of budget. From linens and lighting to booze and taxis, the experts will tell you exactly where to splurge and save; these are my top 8 saves and splurges…

Splurge On: The Venue

“The venue sets the tone for the entire event,” says Julie Savage-Parekh, founder of Strawberry Milk Events. Spending more money up front on a absolutely amazing wedding venue can literally pay off, I mean, a simply beautiful space may well mean that you don’t have to use nearly as many decorations.

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Save On: The Bar

Unless you really really want to, you do not need to have an open bar! Just a simple cocktail on arrival, followed by a glass of prosecco for your toast. Keeping it simple, saves you hassle and money!

Splurge On: Lighting

Something that no-one ever considers… “Lighting is one of the most critical details,” says Lynn Easton, founder and creative director of Easton Events. “There’s no reason to have gorgeous flowers or an amazing tabletop design if no one can really see them! Yes, it can be expensive, but it not only makes the room feel fabulous, your photographs will look amazing!” Whether your are indoors or outdoors, at night or during the day, investing in your lighting will help you create the proper ambience and effect; and therefore the most amazing atmosphere

Save On: The Number of Guests

I’ve said it before and i’ll say it again, it’s quality not quantity when it comes to your guest list, Just think how much nicer your details could be if you opted for a 50 person wedding rather than a 100 person wedding!

Splurge On: Chairs

And I don’t mean Spandex White Chair Covers. Vanessa Van Wieren, founder of Alchemy Fine Events says “If you can only splurge on one thing, make it great chairs for the reception, There’s nothing worse than a venue’s standard ballroom chairs that don’t go with the overall design.” Just have a look and google Ghost Chairs or Limewash Chiavari Chairs, there are so many beautiful options.

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Manor Mews (Unique Norfolk Venues) Photo by Assassynation

Save On: Linens

Thankfully some venues include the cost of your linens for you, if they don’t, consider how much of them you will actually see. if you’re having a sit down meal, it’s worth bearing in mind that once you have dressed your table with your flowers/decorations and the caterers have laid them with all the cutlery, crockery and glassware that you need, just how much table cloth is left on show? Rather than going for the more expensive range, it could be worth going for the budget – mid range and save yourself some pennies

Splurge On: Taxi Service

Brian Worley, co-owner of YourWEDDINGS! and YourBASH! says “Even if you have a flawless wedding, your guests will remember waiting in line for 45 minutes at the end of the night to get their cars because you decided to cut costs on the valet service,” If you have a lot of guests that are either drinking and not staying at your venue or even if your venue has limited parking, it is an amazing added extra to provide a taxi service for your guests. Trust me they will love you for it!

Save On: Printing your Timeline

Instead of custom printing your timeline, why not try and print them yourselves or just put it all on one big chalkboard for everyone to see rather than everyone having their own personal print out. Most people don’t tend to keep hold on to their programs, it’s always going to be worth trying less expensive options.

10 ways to save your budget!

BUDGET, we all hate the word but we all need one, whether it’s for everyday, business or your all important big day, we all need to know what we can and can’t spend, and here are some ways to make your money go further (without having to go down the DIY road!! Unless you really want to?!)

1. Top Priorities

The Rule of Thirds. Choose the three elements of your wedding that is the most important to you (i.e. the dress, venue and photographer, for example), then allocate a little extra to them in your budget. Then, pick three things that fall low on your priority list (like linens, favours and chair covers), and budget accordingly.

2. The Guest List

Ok, so the hardest thing to cut back on, but one of THE fastest and most effective ways to lower your spending. A little bit of math for you: At £100 a head, taking 10 guests off your guest list will save you a whopping £1000! Make sure you also consider the size of your bridal party: Gifts, hair and makeup are cheaper for two or three than for 10; or better yet, get them to pay for their own hair and makeup!

If you’re having trouble deciding who to cut, set yourself some ground rules and stick to them.

To help you get started, you may want to consider crossing out…

  • Anyone that you’ve never spoken to, met or even heard of,
  • Anyone under 12 years old.
  • Anyone whose bedtime occurs before 9 p.m. Chances are they will miss the cake cutting  and first dance anyway, and definitely won’t be offended if they’re left out.

Finally, Only invite friends’ significant others if the couple in question has been dating for more than a year or are currently living together. Otherwise, it’s okay to say no to plus-ones.

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3. Do you really need those pricey extras?

Glamorous details that either one of you are indifferent to, massively bump up your costs without adding any value to your day (I mean come on, do you really need the ice sculpture?). Don’t feel pressured into upgrading and make honest choices based on what you want. Before you sign any contracts, make sure you look through the full details of what you’re buying and, ask yourself, “Will anyone notice if we don’t do this?”

4. Consider Printing Costs

Details that are fun in theory, can actually unnecessary and super expensive in reality (for example, square invites can require extra postage), may need to get scrapped off the todo list. Something even as insignificant as including two shades of ink on your wedding invitation, it might match your color scheme, but, it can massively add to your printing costs.

5. Do you need the big car?

Limo’s might be pretty awesome, but Taxi’s will do just the same job in making sure that your guests get from your ceremony to the reception!

6. Special Effects and Albums?

If you’re happy with simple wedding pictures,make sure you tell your photographer to pass on options like sepia tones, multiple exposures and split frames and just get your photos on a USB.

7. Flowers

Now, I love wedding flowers so by no means I am saying ditch the flowers. Flowers can be known to be an expensive wedding detail. To try and reduce your floral costs, make sure you choose flowers that are in season and if you can try to pick locally grown flowers rather than beautiful blooms that need to be flown in. If not, be bang on trend and go for foliage!

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Image via Style Me Pretty

 

8. Simple foods

You can always reduce the number of overall dinner courses (you don’t need to be serving five individual courses, 2 are often more than enough and 3 can be ample!) and keep the menu simple. Just the same as the flowers, try and stick with local, seasonal ingredients.

9. Bubbles?

Bubbles are bubbles, no-one will ever know if your toast is with Dom Perignon or Tesco’s Finest unless they see the bottle!

10. Do you need all the tiers?

Rather than the 7 tier, beautifully iced cake, ask your baker to do you several sheet cakes of the same flavour and have these ready to cut for your guests; that way you get to have a beautiful cake exactly what you want and within budget without having to triple the size and cost to make sure everyone gets a slice! If you can, try and stay away from handmade sugar flowers or special folded shapes, these can often be what takes the time to create and therefore adds ££ to your bills. Finally, one last tip, choose buttercream over fondant: it’s so much tastier and far less expensive!