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Gone are the days of the traditional big white wedding. Today it’s all about personalisation, and trying to accurately represent the couple’s personalities, interests and beliefs. There are many popular traditions that can occur at weddings, however, there are also no hard and fast rules about what you must do, or what is expected. It’s up to you whether you want to do some, all or none. One of the easiest ways to make your wedding feel more you is to leave out the traditional parts that don't really match up with your ideals or preferences. So, without further ado, here are some traditions it’s definitely ok to skip!
1. The white dress
Don’t feel constrained by the feeling you need to wear a white dress because it seems like the “right” thing to do! Many brides just don’t like white or would rather wear something that more closely reflects their personality. These days brides are wearing everything from nude to red, and cream to black!
2. Traditional “Wedding” Music
Wedding day stalwarts Canon and Bridal Chorus have long been the musical favourites of those hoping to keep their day traditional. However, since your wedding is all about you, don’t be afraid to mix it up and include a lively and or funky number here and there instead!
3. Having your dad walk you down the aisle
While some brides (and dads!) love this tradition, many brides may be uncomfortable with this or perhaps just don't have great relationships with their fathers. So whether you want to walk with your dad, both your parents, a friend, or even on your own, that’s entirely your own choice.
4. The wedding cake
Who said your wedding dessert has to be cake?! If you're all about pie, or can’t resist a cupcake then feel free to serve that instead.
5. The first dance
If there’s music at your wedding, there will inevitably be dancing. Some couples may not be the dancing type, others may not like to be the centre of attention. An easy fix here is have the DJ invite everyone to join you on the dancefloor for the your first dance. This way, not only is the attention not on you, but makes everyone feel like they’re a proper part of your celebration.
6. The garter toss
Not comfortable with the idea of flashing some leg at your wedding? No worries; you can just skip this moment entirely! Often tossing the bouquet is also omitted, as sometimes single guests may not be comfortable with this tradition. Nobody will even notice they didn’t happen!
Your wedding will be one of the most important occasions in your life, and therefore it’s very important to make sure everything is just as you’d like it to be. Putting unique touches to various aspects of your day can help in creating those perfect memories. One way you can add a personal touch to your wedding is by creating place cards for your guests. Not only is it a fun task that everyone can get involved with (who doesn’t love cut and stick?!), it can also help save a lot of money. And the best part? They’re your own unique, original, one-of-a-kind creations that represent your personality and style, all while fitting with your chosen theme.
The style and cost is entirely up to you; you can go all out or just keep it simple. Creating a place name can be as easy as finding the right type of heavy paper/card and putting your calligraphy skills to the test, or using a good home printer with a decent supply of ink.
For something a little more adventurous, it might be worth holding on to nice scraps of tissue paper and wrapping paper, buttons, ribbon, and pieces of fabric, as well as investing in gold, silver and black pens (if you feel like handwriting names). You never know when inspiration might strike!
Another interesting way to create place cards is by using small picture frames. There are so many styles and colours to choose from (and they’re quite cheap), as well as the option of choosing a plain style and decorating it to your liking (try painting it, or gluing on flowers and other decorations). Frames are an interesting alternative to paper place names, as they are less likely to be accidently damaged, and will stay clean due to the glass. They will also serve as a nice token of your day for your guests to bring home if they wish.
Here are some more ideas for place names:
- Use wine corks to hold cards with guests names
- Cocktail umbrellas labelled with the guests names
- Spell out the guests names with Scrabble pieces
- Handwritten bookmark-type place names
- Luggage tags with the guests names
- A photo of the bride or groom with each particular guest for a very personal touch (if it’s a small wedding and this is possible)
- Use a place envelope instead of a place name and include a photo of the couple, a nice poem, or the lyrics to the couple’s favourite song inside.
- A washing line style display with all the guests names and tables numbers pegged onto it.
Did you know that in 1993, over 30,000 guests attended a wedding inJerusalem, making it the largest wedding attendance on record.
Compiling a wedding guest list can be very stressful as people's feelings are involved. Here, tact and sympathy for others' feelings are needed, as well as patience and understanding to avoid conflict. Here are some guidelines for creating your wedding guest list:
- Figure out your budget - decide out how much money you can spend on food per guest at the reception, and use that amount to determine the number of guests you can invite. After all, the head count at your reception is the biggest expense in your wedding budget. Remember, stick to your budget!
- Create a rough list - before creating the final guest list, you and your fiancé, as well as both sets of parents should create a list. Then, work together to compile these lists and reach the required amount of guests to fit your budget.
- Prioritise - it might be a good idea to split your guests into must, should and could invites. There are certain people you’ll definitely want to have at your wedding, and those that you aren’t so sure about. Does your budget cover all the must invites? If so, move on to the should invites and then to the could invites. By doing this, it ensures that the people who are most important to you will make the cut.
- Family First – you should always invite family first. Remember, your family and close friends are the ones you care about the most, and are the ones you most likely will want to spend your day with.
- Significant Others - if your budget allows, give the single members of the wedding party and single family members the option of bringing a guest. If the budget does not allow for this, address the invitation appropriately. Don’t include “and guest” in the hopes that they won’t bring one because they probably will.
- Co-Workers - don’t feel obligated to invite co-workers. Just because you spend every day with them doesn’t mean they have to be at your wedding. Secondly, you may not even work with them in the future, so don’t feel pressure to invite them just because they know you’re getting married.
- Children - deciding whether to invite children can be tough. Before you make the decision, consider the type of wedding you’re having. If it’s a black tie affair and your reception begins in the evening, you may have to deal with cranky children when they become tired and bored. If you’re having a casual garden wedding in the early afternoon, then it may be more child-friendly!
- Children also count toward your final number, and, if space is limited at your reception, you may have an easier time making your decision. Your flower girl and ring bearer are part of your wedding party, so you must invite them. If either you or your fiancé has children, you should include them. Also, if either of you has children in your immediate family (brothers or sisters), you should invite them as well.
Although creating your own flower arrangements for your wedding can be quite stressful, it can also be very rewarding. Your creations will be unique and original, as well as matching exactly to your theme and expectations. Flowers are such a large focal point of any wedding, so wouldn’t it be great to decide exactly what all your guests will see?
Well, you’re in luck. Flower arranging for weddings is not particularly difficult; it’s just very time consuming. Firstly you need to decide what exactly it is you’d like to design – weddings generally consist of the bride’s bouquet, bridesmaid’s flowers, buttonholes for the men, ceremonial flowers (pedestal and end of pew arrangements), and reception flowers (centrepieces). Then, you need to plan the colour scheme, shape, and sizes of your arrangements, and which flowers you’d like to use, as well as where will supply them.
Many people may not want to take on this kind of responsibility, seeing as the arrangements need to be created the day before the wedding, and kept watered and refrigerated overnight for freshness. The last thing you want is wilting flowers on your wedding day!
So, for those of you who may not want to design all your flower arrangements, but still want to leave a personalised horticultural stamp on your day, we have selected one arrangement that you might like to try, and one that will the centre of attention of the day – the bride’s bouquet.
You Will Need
Flowers, scissors, floral tape, ribbon and pins.
1. Prepare the flowers - make sure all foliage/thorns has been removed from the stems.
2. Same length stems - make sure that all stems are approximately the same length (anywhere from 10-14 inches).
3. Create the base - choose 2-4 flowers that will serve as an “anchor” that you will build around. Wrap the stems together with floral tape. Leave 1 to 1.5 inches of exposed stem visible from where you begin to wrap the stems and about 4 to 5 inches of exposed stem from the bottom.
4. Build your bouquet – add flowers around your anchored flowers, creating a bunch. Mix colours textures and greenery to your personal preference, and continue wrapping the bouquet with floral tape as you add new flowers.
5. Wrap with floral tape – when you’re happy with your arrangement, wrap the entire bouquet with floral tape. This keeps all the flowers in place and provides support for them. Start about 1 to 1 ½ inches from the flower heads, and leave some or none of the stems exposed at the end. This is all down to personal preference.
6. Wrap with ribbon – pin the ribbon to the floral tape under the flower heads, and wrap it around the stems down as far as where the floral tape ends. Pin the end of the ribbon to the floral tape to keep it in place.
This Thursday's tip is another one that will help cut your wedding budget :-) Who doesn't love cupcakes?!