Posts categorized: Ideas

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Totally fab & alternative wedding favours

LEGO-Alternative-Wedding-Favours

 

I have something to admit. Wedding favours have never sat well with me. I have never understood them, I didn’t have them at my wedding because I thought they were ‘an American thing’, a waste of time and money. The thought of mini bottles of champagne bubbles makes me feel nauseous.  My best friend told me earlier this week she was given a condom as a favour once, not to mention the name places with her AND her husbands names spelt wrong…..wtf!

However this week I was looking for images of succulents online as I’m considering getting one tattooed on my shoulder.  I stumbled across the most fabulous alternative wedding favours I’d ever seen, living succulents in tiny hand thrown pots. They made my heart sing. I can totally imagine my delight if I found one of these beauties on my table at a wedding and I would treasure it and think of that wedding every time I spritzed it.

This find inspired me to look in to the history of favours, I wanted to convince myself that wedding favours can be really cool. After googling ‘the history of wedding favours’ I found a great post on the Wasing Park blog (a Truly Quirky Wedding Venue)  about a member of their team who had recently married and had the same feelings as me. Yep, she researched the history of favours too.

The tradition lies with the French aristocracy. During the 16th century they would pass guests ʻbonbonnièresʼ, delicately jewel encrusted boxes full of sugared almonds or sweets. This was a gesture of extravagance but it was also believed that sugar had health-giving properties. It seems that a gift of a bonbonnière was a symbol of care extended to all guests. Sugared almonds carried additional significance at weddings, as the bitterness of the almonds and the sweetness of the sugar was thought to symbolise the bitter-sweetness of marriage, which in my eyes is a wise message to pass on.

So with a new place in my heart for the wedding favour I offer you, in no particular order my Top Five Alternative Wedding Favours …

 

ONE | Living Succulents | Alternative Wedding Favours by ElfKendall on Etsy

 

Alternative wedding favours, succulents.

 

I found these on Etsy by ElkKendall. I read with delight that her husband makes the pots and she plants the succulents, which she calls jewels of nature, and to me they are.

 

TWO | Polaroid coasters or magnets | Alternative Wedding Favours

Alternative Wedding Favours | Polaroid Coasters

 

Recently I had that sinking feeling that I’m sure many of us have these days ‘I never see the photos I take anymore (sadface)’ so I’ve started using an app called Cheerz who print your Instagram images. I hang them on little lines with mini pegs, but that’s by the by, how about polaroid coasters for your guests, CUTE and alternative wedding favours.

You could choose images of you and your friends or you as a couple, or just things you love that will remind your guests of you and your day.

 

THREE | Library Cards with snippets of book facts on the back | Alternative Wedding Favour Ideas

 

Alternative Wedding Favours | Book Ideas

 

Great idea, love this, especially for a bookwormy couple. This one might take some time but I love the idea of these little library cards.

 

Four | Charity | Alternative Wedding Favours that save lives

Alternative Wedding Favours that save lives

 

These made my heart glow. These little charity wedding favours from Unicef provide six children with a school exercise book and two pencils, helping them to learn. The cards have space for you to write a message to your guests. Loads of charities do similar favours.

 

FIVE | Temporary Tattoos | Alternative Wedding Favours

 

Doris Loves Temporary Tattoos

 

Temporary tattoos always make me smile, kids love them, we love them, they are just great and you can take loads of photos of you being silly with them. These are a particular favourite of mine that come with Doris Loves Temporary Tattoo Station In A Box!

I hope this post has offered you some inspiration if you feel the way I did about the sometimes, dreaded wedding favour.

Yours Truly

Kelly

(Top image of favours from JacksbrickBlog)

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#AutumnWeddingIdeas

Yellow Wellies

Wotton House Wellies

 

Getting married next Autumn? Exciting. Autumn Weddings are a dream to me, fresh crisp air, blue skies, orange leaves drifting on by, yeah, if I did it again I’d do it autumn. I have heard many a photographer say it is the best time of year for wedding photos too, something to do with the light, the atmosphere, the colours I guess. So here are a few really great, easy, and of course, quirky Autumn Wedding ideas . .

 

Autumn Wedding Ideas 1. Succulent Bouquets . . . 

I don’t know about you but I LOVE succulents, they ooze life, they compliment all types of flowers and foliage. These juicy autumnal bouquets show that succulents enhance any colour scheme, so they are the top of my list of truly delightful Autumn Wedding Ideas. You could also pop single house leeks in orange pots on your tables.

 

 

Autumn Wedding Ideas 2. Blood Orange Welcome Drinks . . .

There’s something about the Blood Orange isn’t there? Something other worldly, the aroma, the intense red and of course it’s name. Autumn wedding welcome drinks should be beautiful, orange gems, so here are 3 gorgeous recipes for you to consider. Alternatively you could sip these by the fire after dark. #toptip Always make sure there are virgin options for those that don’t drink alcohol. 
  1. Blood Orange Champagne Mule from halfbakedharvest.com
  2. Blood Orange & Rosemary G&Ts from figsandpigs.com
  3. Blood Orange & Elderflower Gin Cocktails from thelittleepicurean.com

 

Autumn Wedding Ideas 3. Vintage Orange Bridesmaid Dresses

Gone are the days of matching bridesmaids from stuffy ‘wedding dress shops’. If you’re getting married in Autumn among the trees, maybe a woodland wedding, then imagine these beauties appearing beside you. There’s a wealth of fabulous vintage shops up and down the country but I found these divine orange numbers on Etsy! I know I would be thrilled if my friend told me I could chose my own vintage dress as long as it was orange. Heaven.

 

 

 

Autumn Wedding Idea 4. Late night Autumnal Tummy Warmers

I don’t think there is anything more satisfying than warming your tum up on a cold autumn evening. If you are looking for foody autumn wedding ideas then maybe consider the one of these three wedding caterers. I tell you what your guests will be SO darn grateful and won’t forget the moment they were feeling a bit chilly and the late night treats arrived. I bet they’re good at soaking up the booze too!

  1. pieminister.co.uk
  2. goodspuds.co.uk
  3. anna-maes.com

 

 

Autumn Wedding Ideas 5. Bonfires!

Is there anything more cosy of an evening in Autumn than to have a bonfire lit. Your wedding will  be one to remember because you chose a Truly Quirky Wedding Venue and because you remembered to warm up your guests before the fire works. Get some blankets by the back door for people to cover their knees. Oh and some sparklers!! Amazing times people, amazing times.

 

Happy Planning! I hope these Autumn Wedding Ideas have been helpful.

Until next time,

Kelly

 

Advise, blog, Ideas /

5 Tips | Choosing music for your wedding | By Flauntino

Flautino Alternative Wedding Music | Choosing music for your wedding

 

Think about the last wedding you went to: how did it make you feel? Were you relaxed? Was it super-formal? Did you feel free to chat to people you didn’t know?

The atmosphere of a wedding is hugely important and will be the difference between you and your guests being relaxed and having fun rather than being worried and uptight. Of course a lot of that is down to good organisation but beyond that … the atmosphere is created by the people you have there, the food, the decoration, the venue, the staff and of course, the music!

These are all vitally important and should reflect your own style and what makes you happy. You won’t be able to make everyone happy so focus on what you love … hopefully everyone is there because they love you anyway. Choosing music for your wedding is a MASSIVE decision actually . . . but I can help!

 

Elmore Court | Choosing music for your wedding

(Couple at Elmore Court)

So how do you go about choosing music for your wedding?

  1. First of all, break the wedding into its constituent parts: the ceremony and then what ever you choose to do afterwards … maybe drinks reception, dinner, then evening do (being the most conventional option!)
  2. Then think about what kind of atmosphere you want to create at each of those ‘mini-events’. The ceremony is usually calm, joyful and peaceful … jot down the words you would use to describe your ideal atmosphere. 
Then you need to make the decision between live and recorded music. Of course recorded music is the cheaper option. Personally I find it adds so much to the atmosphere to have live music.
  3. So think about genres … jazz, classical, pop, folk, funk, rock …. rather than straight away choosing your favourite song maybe think outside the box a bit and listen to a wide range of music and see how it makes you feel. Again … think about the atmosphere you’re after.
  4. Once you’ve narrowed it down there are various ways of finding someone to do what you’re after. If you have a really specific idea, google specifically … you can find pretty much anything these days! My friend wants a mariachi band playing punk music! If you’re not so sure then try one of the music agencies, speak to friends for recommendations and go to gigs to try out some new music! That has to be a fun part of wedding planning …some fun dates with your other half! Planning a wedding can be stressful and you sometimes you will lose the plot a bit, so use these dates to reconnect and have fun!
  5. Once you’ve found the music that suits each part of the wedding, make sure you’re clear with the musician about what you’re after … make sure you get a contract signed in case anything goes wrong and make sure you know whether they will charge a retainer fee if you want them at different parts of the wedding. Above all, make sure you love the music you’ve chosen and enjoy!

Flautino provides beautiful, serene music for wedding ceremonies, drinks receptions and dinners. The musicians dress in quirky baroque style costumes (think Keira Knightley in the Duchess with pink hair!) and play baroque chamber music by composers such as Bach and Vivaldi.

I hope I’ve helped with choosing music for your wedding.

Super classy | Super quirky | Super cool | Take a look at their website: www.flautino.co.uk

Words by Flautino!

Until next time you gorgeous lot.

x

blog, Ideas /

5 Truly Quirky Autumn Wedding Ideas | Woodland Animals & Pasties

Autumn Weddings are a dream to me, fresh crisp air, blue skies, orange leaves drifting on by, yeah, if I did it again I’d do it autumn. I have heard many a photographer say it is the best time of year for wedding photos too, something to do with the light, the atmosphere, the colours I guess. So here are a few really great, easy, and of course, quirky Autumn Wedding ideas . .

 

Autumnal Floral Bag | Alternative Bouquet by Julie Cambridge 

Autumn Wedding Ideas Julie Cambridge Autumn

I don’t know about you but I LOVE succulents, they ooze life, they compliment all types of flower and foliage but this is just awesome. Julie Cambridge recently won a prize for this creation, just look at those orchids, house leeks and seasonal berries all snugged up in a wooden bridal bag. This is top of my list of truly delightful Autumn Wedding Ideas. Stunning I’d say.

 

Autumnal Glitter Leaf Decorations

Who knows a child? Yeah we all know a child don’t we. Who knows a child who wouldn’t like collecting some leaves? Not me! Who knows a child that doesn’t love glitter? Well actually we could substitute the word child for human here. Autumn wedding ideas don’t come more glitzy than this

Autumn Wedding Ideas Glitter Leaves

 

Autumn Colour Palette

Found on ITakeYou.Co.Uk this gorgeous autumn colour palette is just my idea of autumnal heaven. Teal and orange are so great together, I might even be tempted to befriend a redhead just to have her wear a teal dress on the day, well maybe I wouldn’t go that far but just imagine that.

I Take You Autumn Wedding Ideas

 

Woodland Animal Details

Sarah London Photography

 

Get some woodland animal inspired details going on! Sarah London Photographer was kind enough to share this fab cake (above) that she shot at a recent wedding, the colours and the foxy toppers scream AUTUMN. Those mini pumpkins and leaves on the cupcakes are just fab aren’t they?! I also adore the cake (below) which was sent to me by FitzGerald Photography, and ‘dear me’, that beast is to die for is’t she? Not to offend the bull, oops, sorry.

 

The Bell in Ticehurst | FitzGerald Photographic

 

Late night Autumnal Tummy Warmers

I don’t think there is anything more satisfying than warming your tum up on a cold autumn evening. If you are looking for foody autumn wedding ideas then maybe consider the humble pasty. I tell you what your guests will be SO darn grateful and won’t forget the moment they were feeling a bit chilly and the late night treats arrived. I bet they’re good at soaking up the booze too.

 

Midnight Treats

Bye for now,

Kelly

x

blog, Ideas /

Truly Quirky Wedding Ideas | Quirky unique wedding dresses

You are getting married, so you need a wedding dress, you will start your search and you will ‘see a sea’ of beautiful dresses. I think you will know from early on if you don’t want a traditional wedding dress or a white wedding dress but you will look at them. You will look at them but your heart won’t flutter like it should. You should get the same feeling you got when your partner proposed, you should melt. So my pretties, don’t settle, you can have your quirky, unique wedding dresses.

Here are few of my favourites . . .

 

Florence | Oh My Honey

What can I say about Louise’s dresses, they ROCK! Florence has a simple sweetheart neckline, an amazing ombré, choppy tulle petticoat fading from ivory to candy pink bursting out from underneath, just WOW. This one will turn heads and is not for the feint of heart.

Oh my Honey Florence

 

1920’s Beaded Gowns | Leluxe

I first heard about these beautiful gowns from Ooh Mrs James, they are made by Leluxe Clothing and featured in ‘The Artist’. What I adore about these dresses is how they hang, they are so flattering, and let’s face it, they oooze style. I tried one on at a wedding fair I put on at Old Spitalfields and it was so heavy and just made me feel like a woman!

 

Leluxe Beaded

 

 

Yellow Wedding Dress | Alice Closet Italy on Etsy

Etsy Yellow

 

I don’t about you but colour makes me smile. This is a one of a kind dress, made with crepe cady (viscose blend) and with 100% silk organza in a rich yellow, it’s very sunny and golden at the same time. The bodice has a simple style, fully lined in cotton and boned. The skirt is made with a crepe cady with a long train and is embellished with 2 asymmetrical layers of silk organza on every side…perfect for a flowing and architectural effect, just stunning. You can find this dress on Etsy.

 

Kate Lace Maxi Dress| ASOS

ASOS Blue

 

At just £65 this stunner of a dress could definitely be a unique wedding dress, that colour, that lace, it’s on trend, it’s well priced and it could be with you within one day. You could even get it altered by a seamstress and would will sill be a bargain.

 

Retro Love | The Couture Company at Rock The Frock 

The-couture-company-unique wedding dress

 

Rock The Frock in London stock awesome dresses like the one pictured by The Couture Company who specialise in custom made, alternative, quirky, unique wedding dresses. All their awesome gowns are made in house, made in England and most importantly made for you by an experienced team at their Birmingham boutique atelier, each one being created in the finest fabrics, using exquisite detailing and flattering pattern cutting techniques.

 

See I told you! You can have unique wedding dresses you lovely lot.

 

Kelly

 

x

 

 

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Truly Quirky Wedding Ideas | Alternative Mobile Bars

So many venues these days allow couples to bring their own bar along and my OH MY there are so many quirky, alternative mobile bars out there to choose from, here are a few of my faves.

 

Gin & Bear It | Brighton & across Sussex

A Brighton based ‘pop up’ Gin Bar serving the finest gins both branded and home infused from the rear of their  stunning, classic Morris Minor, Aubrey. They’ll drive to your venue and add a really alternative feel to the day. Find out more at ginandbearit.co.uk.

Gin & Bear It

 

The Tipple Taxi | London & across the UK

Classic cars make awesome alternative mobile bars, The Tipple Taxi  is a beautiful, classic Fairway London taxi that can park up and be ready serve amazing cocktails at your wedding. Five lucky guests can enjoy the ‘taxi booth’, a unique drinking space for resting their feet, listening to tunes and sipping on a drink.

Tipple Taxi

 

Couple of Mugs | South West

Couple of Mugs

Rhys and Rhys are a Couple of Mugs and are making what some called a pipe dream…into a reality. Out of Cedric their super cool and quirky 1971 Citroen H-Van they offer a variety of services including wedding bars. The aim is simple: to create a mobile bar and tea van that provides a head turning, thirst quenching, mouth watering talking point to any event.

 

The Cockatoo | Sussex

The Cockatoo  is the ULTIMATE alternative mobile bar. Literally the all singing all dancing, top of the pops, quirky cocktail bar experience that will BLOW your guests socks OFF! This Bar & Cocktail Emporium is a converted 1965 Morris Ambulance and available either with or without the giant, revolving, copper birdcage stage. At night, the mirror ball creates a dazzling light show around the bar.

See for yourselves my pretties… 

 

Doily’s Mini Bar | South East & London

DoilysMiniBar

Doily’s Mini Bar is a mobile bar ‘set’ including vintage wallpapered walls (complete with flying ducks, antlers and retro pictures), a 1950s cocktail bar with quirky vintage props, additional service area and fridges. Basically is rocks!

So there you have it, my favourite alternative mobile bars for you.

Cheers!

Kelly

PS: You can meet Gin & Bear It at The QUirky Boutique Wedding Fair in October.

Advise, blog, Ideas /

A Wedding Signature Cocktail by Jam & Tea

Kat Forsyth image for Jam & Tea

 

Having been not 1, not 2 but 3 amazing festivals already this year I was thrilled to see an abundance of cocktail bars and they all had fabulous signature cocktails on offer, it got me thinking about how great it would be to have a signature wedding cocktail and to offer your guests the a little instruction card as a favour. There are so many quirky drinks out there but this one made me smile, made me want to sip it in the sun.

“A signature wedding cocktail is a lovely idea” Helen of Doily Day’s.

Jam & Tea were generous enough to share one of their inspiring recipes ‘Ginty’s Fizz’ with Helen of Doily Days…

Ingredients:

x 1 bottle Prosecco or Champers if you’re feeling flash!

x 4 – 6 shots of Hendricks Gin, add more or less gin to liking.

x 6 tea spoons of rose water.

x 1 handful of fresh, seasonal berries, Jam and Tea love blueberries, strawberries and red currants.

x 1 – 2 Cups of pink lemonade

x 1 Lemon, sliced

x A few sprigs of mint.

A sprinkle of edible glitter.

Ice

You will need:

A large, tall jug or a punch bowlA long mixing spoon.

Champagne saucers/jam jars.

Cute little spoons (to dig out the Berries).

Method…

1. About a half hour before you would like to serve your cocktail place the Berries, lemon, mint, ice and A very small sprinkling of edible glitter into the jug/punch bowl.

2. Add the rose water and Gin and leave to infuse

3. When you are ready to serve your cocktail, add the Prosecco and pink lemonade – ready to go…

4. Prettiest served in Champagne saucers or jam jars wrapped in lace.

Enjoy!

Cocktails!

 

For some amazing wedding ideas and inspiration keep an eye out for the latest edition of Doily Day’s Loves Wedding’s Magazine which will be launched in September and available at both of Belle’s Events Autumn Fairs.

Kelly

x

Belle's Events
Advise, blog, Ideas /

Wedding Balloons Yes or No?

Brighton Photo Balloons

 

The Great Balloon Debate

Here goes – a topic I’ve wanted to broach for a long time. Balloons. Love or hate? Wedding Balloons yes or no? I think there’s a fine line between deflated kids birthday party, and helium filled balloon happiness. Who remembers the 1990 film ‘Stella’? Where all Bette Midler wants is a room full of balloons. Crummy apartment. Room full of balloons. Classic romantic proposal as far as I’m concerned. So yup, you’ve guessed it – I’m a lover. I go all doe eyed when I see balloons at weddings.

 

Big bunches of pastel coloured balloons, single, oversized red balloon. In my mind they’re more effective than a bouquet, walk down the aisle with your balloons, give balloons to the bridesmaids.

 

 

Sacco & Sacco

 

So it seems wedding balloons are Bang. On. Trend. “I must admit I’ve always been a little snobby about wedding balloon decor, thinking them unimaginative, cheap and tacky… but wedding balloon decor has had a super-cool makeover. Yes, balloons are back and they are chic-er than ever!” Sonia, www.wantthatwedding.co.uk

 

Bride with balloon

 

If you’re looking to get some amazing wedding balloons for your big day here a few sites to I can recommend for buying wedding balloons;

The Giant Balloon Company 

Pop Pop Papier 

Pearl & Earl 

Bubblegum Balloons

Photo Madly bride with wedding balloons

 

Words by Helen of Doily Days and myself.

x

PS: Here are a few links to some real weddings featuring the ultimate in quirky, colourful wedding balloons!

Bo-Ho Wedding – Bonkers Barn Wedding 

RMW  – Shoreditch Soul Mates

Love My Dress – Summer Garden Party

 

 

 

Ideas /

DIY Wedding Pom Poms Tutorial

Title Image DIY DOILY

 

I think you’ll agree that this is a very cute DIY wedding idea from Doily Day’s Loves Wedding’s magazine, DIY wedding pom poms with a doily twist! They really are so simple and effective. If you wanted to take it a step further you could grab some spray paint and go for orange, black, silver, neons, whatever takes your fancy really. I think I would be tempted to spray some doilies gold!

Invite your mates over one evening leading up to your wedding and I reckon you’d have enough to fill a quirky wedding venue in no time at all.

 

Step 1 Doily Pom Pom   Step Two DIY Doily Pom Poms Step Three DIY Wedding Pom Poms

 

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

 

There’ll be loads more tips and ideas where this one came from.

With thanks to Doily Days Loves Weddings Magazine editor Helen Ruff. 

blog, Ideas, Top Tips from venues /

Five Top Wedding Planning Tips from Conor, Events Manager at Smock Alley

rainbow-parasols-at-wedding

Five Top Wedding Planning Tips . . .

Number One

Plan the wedding that YOU want
So many times when I meet a couple they ask, “what do people normally do?” or “what’s the normal set up?”. People need ‘wedding planning tips!’ and I always tell them the same thing, plan the wedding that YOU want to have. Don’t get hung up on what you think might be expected of your big day. If you feel like having fire jugglers and a BBQ, do it. It will really make your day yours and much more special than a cookie cutter version of a wedding.

Number Two

Seek advice from friends and family but do not let them influence you too much.
Friends and family are an asset and will bend over backwards to help you have a wonderful wedding. However, learn to be decisive with them. They may have some wedding planning tips you don’t want to hear! With so many opinions coming at you it can be easy to get confused, overwrought or worse, upset. It is, of course, well intentioned advice but it can sometimes sound like criticism. Listen to ideas and suggestions then as a couple make a decision.

Number Three

Mistakes will happen!
No matter how well you plan a wedding something will go wrong. I have dealt with rainstorms, lost grandmothers, forgotten wedding licences, a drunk father of the bride and a lost engagement ring amongst other things. Hopefully, nothing so dramatic will happen on the day of your wedding but it very well could. Take it in your stride, its not the end of the world and trust me, the next day it could well end up as the hilarious highlight of the day.
Bettierose1

Number Four 

Be flexible in your plans
Weddings take months of planning. From dresses, to menus, to venues, to flowers. Each detail is carefully considered and arranged. But when the day comes do not get hung up on details.Be relaxed in your approach. Time lines will slip, people will be late, maybe dessert isnt exactly how your remember at the tasting. But at the end of the day these things are trivialities and the most important detail is that you love each other and you are married. When it comes to wedding planning tips you can’t go far wrong with the immortal words of The Beatles, all you need is love!

Number Five 

Enjoy it!!!!!
I can not stress this enough. I have from time to time seen some brides and grooms get so hung up on time lines and plans that they seem to almost miss the fact its their wedding day. They are constantly looking at the next part of the day rather than enjoying the moment they are in. This is such  mistake. Delegate jobs to others to worry about and NEVER wear a watch or have your mobile to hand. You need neither.
Conor,
Events Manager at Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin.
Pennard House Happiness
Advise, blog, Ideas /

BOOM! Shake shake shake the ROOM! Doris Loves #Top3Tips

Doris Loves  Light Up Letters BOOM

 

Amanda of Doris Loves is no DJ, she’s no technician, she and her divine husband Darren are the creators of the most awesome ‘LIGHT UP LETTERS‘ on the wedding hire market. Doris Loves has exhibited at each and very one of my wedding fairs and the reaction to the light up letters is always the same . . . W.O.W. These lovely pair can make a Truly Quirky Wedding Fair dance floor BOOM!

So, here we go, the lady herself offers her Top 3 Tips for making your wedding dance floor B.O.O.M

Tip1 Think about the lighting.

To guarantee an empty dance floor, turn the lights up, nobody feels like approaching a BRIGHT dance floor. When people throw those shapes they want atmosphere and they don’t want to feel like they’re under one giant spot light. Dim the lights, any good venue will be prepared for this. Just don’t forget to ask.

Tip2 Signage, spell it out to your guests.

Here’s a great example from Pinterest, it sets the scene for your guests and lets them know just what your expecting. I particularly like ‘Dance Offs should take place where appropriate, and often!’

 

DorisBOOM2 Sign

 

Want to tick off tip one and two it one easy hit? Then hire our ‘Light Up Letters!’ They are another great way to create a great lighting atmosphere, but with over 70 battery powered letters in stock, you could spell out the word M.O.V.E // D.A.N.C.E // D.A.N.C.E.F.L.O.O.R. then theres no way of missing it!

Doris Loves Light Up Letters PARTY

Tip3 The 2nd song.

The scene is set, the dance floor is looking fantastic with it’s atmospheric lighting and light up letters. You’ve spelt it out clearly to your guests, your expecting some serious shapes to be thrown.

You’ve thought long and hard about your first dance, you’ve picked the perfect song, everyone starts joining in at the end, everyone is swaying away… and this is when you hit them with the ultimate dance friendly song! This way they can’t resist staying and dancing the night away.

So there you have it ladies and gents, if you want to keep your dance floor BOOM-ing follow these tips and your sure to have an absolute blast out there (and some footage you’ll watch again and again).

Amanda

x

 

blog, Ideas, Meet the venue /

An exclusive interview with Simon Baring of Elmore Court!

Simon - Working at a wedding venue - we think!

 Who are you and what is your role at Elmore Court?

My name is Simon and I’m the admin and accounts manager (among several other things) here at Elmore.  I also do some sales, PR and technology management.  I’m also the sound engineer and occasionally nightporter!  Think of me as a slightly less flamboyant, less scented and possibly more practical version of GustavH from The Grand Hotel Budapest.

 

How did you get involved with the venue and how long ago was that?

I’ve lived here in this beautiful place for 5 years or so, previously doing my self-employed DJing, music production and booking agency business. This was before the idea of the venue was conceived.  I come from a shared music industry background with the owner Anselm, who is one of my great friends.  Turns out I was in the right place at the right time with the right skills to fill a heap of roles here when the venue became a reality.

 

The venue is ‘Truly Quirky’ we know that already but what do you feel makes it stand out from the wedding venue crowd?

Honestly, I haven’t experienced that many other wedding venues, but from what I’m told by the people that look at several and then book here, it’s largely our attitude combined with the unique and wonderful Gillyflower; as well as our flexibility and willingness to accommodate all types of weddings, people and ideas.  All are welcome at Elmore, everything is possible and we aim to give people what they want and then some…

 

Elmore Court-5-140607 - Rickards and Abbot, MTM Studio, Weddings and Events (1)

If you could choose one song/album to listen to while you’re doing what you do at the venue what would it be?

I haven’t managed to get past Todd Terje’s album of 2014 called ‘It’s Album Time’.  It’s a fantastic energetic album that keeps my foot tapping and my mind flowing!

 

What’s the best thing about working at a wedding venue as special as Elmore Court?

Seeing so many happy people every weekend!  Plus, getting to try snippets of what our brilliant kitchen team put out.

Simon 3

If you were planning your wedding at the venue what would you choose in terms of styling and flowers?

I would most likely leave the styling side of things to my better half! But, if I had to choose, the 3 most important elements of a wedding for me would be:

  • A swift and painless ceremony with lots of joy, laughter and good songs! Speeches too must be short, sweet and punchy. Nothing worse than when things start to drag on awkwardly.
  • Great food and drink, served quickly and not too showy. No being trapped at tables while endless courses are served when everybody just wants to start the real celebrations!
  • The company… the mix of people is vital to everybody having a great time. The Bride of course must attend or my wedding wouldn’t be much fun!

 

 

And lastly, have you ever had a sip of champagne on the job? Yeah you have!

I’m more of an Ale and whisky man personally- bring on the local Stroud Brewery Organic ales!  But yes, I have been known to partake in a little sip here and there!

Nice getting to know you Simon!

Kelly

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Advise, blog, Ideas /

My #top10 wedding fair tips for exhibitors & visitors

Afterparty

 

“I love you because you are EXACTLY like everyone else,” is not a marriage proposal to set the heart beating faster.

We love each other for our uniqueness and quirks and, as such, traditional wedding receptions involving crisp white tablecloths, salmon for starters and a three-tier white cake are swiftly becoming a thing of the past. Couples are crying out for new ideas, quirky, inspirational suppliers and venues who allow them to reflect their personalities on their big day.

When I was planning my wedding this time eleven years ago (ouch!), I went to a wedding fair with my mum and we had to flee offers of tacky cars, chocolate fountains and cream chair covers and vow that we would do it all ourselves.

 

brighton wedding photographer

 

Family and friends were involved in making a day that reflected Joss and I. My mother-In-law designed and made me a beautiful 1950’s style lace dress, which I will treasure forever more. My boss drove me in his jeep (and arranged champagne and mixed a brilliant CD!) A friend arranged our photographer and another organised a Moroccan menu.

 

The Quirky Boutique Wedding Fair

 

No offence to Joss but since then my mind has often happily drifted off into thoughts of planning another wedding and if my big day was coming up in 2015 I would be thrilled at the imaginative and original companies there are out there now. On May 10th I have planned the third ‘Quirky Boutique Wedding Fair‘, it’s the wedding fair of my dreams, the one I wish I could have attended. I like to think that it will play a part in helping creative, stylish couples create a wedding that they will cherish because it reflects them.

Three years ago I launched Belles Events running unique, quirky, vintage weddings fairs across Sussex & London. When I planned my own wedding I would have loved to have found any of the inspirational, talented, and friendly suppliers I now know because they are all committed to thrill couples who want something a little bit different’ As they say on Twitter #lovemyjob.

 

DorisL1

 

As wedding fair season has just begun I thought I would share my best wedding fair tips for exhibitors and visitors |

My top 10 tips for visiting Wedding Fairs | 

  1. Look around for fairs that suit your style, there is no point going to a fairy tale wedding fair if you want a gothic wedding. There are so many fabulous fairs out there BUT there are some terrible ones too, search on line and choose your search words wisely.
  2. Take your time, don’t rush, remember that the suppliers have paid to attend and are there to talk to you and find out what you want.
  3. It’s easy to get overwhelmed. You can often leave the fair by getting a stamp on your hand. Sometimes taking a break is a good idea, go for a walk, and come back after you have thought of what you want to find out.
  4. Take business cards of suppliers you like the look of so you can contact them after the day and tell them where you saw them. Find their Facebook Pages and link up with them on Twitter and Pinterest.
  5. Ask if the supplier is offering a discount for bookings made that day, often you will save yourself up to 15%.
  6. Take people along that want to be there. If your partner isn’t up for it, don’t drag them along; it will just annoy you, and them! Equally, if your partner does want to get involved don’t whatever you do leave them out of it.
  7. Take cash, you never know what you might find. Some suppliers take card payments on the day but wouldn’t it be awful to miss out on something special?
  8. Don’t feel pressured, but don’t miss out, if a photographer you adore has your date available, consider paying a deposit on the day.
  9. Don’t freak out! If you have always dreamt of one particular hairstyle for example and you see someone doing demonstrations, get involved, open your mind and you might be surprised about what you could achieve.
  10. Remember this. You only get married once, hopefully, enjoy this, don’t get stressed; all that matters is that you are marrying the person you love.

My top Wedding Fairs tips for exhibitors | 

  1. Look around for events that suit your style, there is no point paying to attend a wedding fair that won’t attract the couples that will love what you do. I have to turn away businesses that I know will not do well at my events, it’s a hard thing to do but I don’t feel that having a very traditional dress company exhibiting would be fair.
  2. Before you book for a fair speak to the organiser and find out how they will be advertising, how they run the fairs, for example do they have limits on services such as florists and cake makers, do they provide parking?
  3. Make sure you have business cards available with your Social Media details on them.
  4. Think about offering a discount to couples that pay a deposit or book on the day.
  5. Consider getting a card payment devise for larger fairs or allow couples to pay deposit my Paypal on your phone or iPad.
  6. Use fairs as networking opportunities, there are lots of other suppliers feeling like you, make fiends, before the fair opens walk around and exchange cards, offer to get them a cup of tea if they look nervous.
  7. Make your stall stand out, bring beautiful, ironed fabric to cover your table, adorn it with things that make a statement about your company, think of your stall as your little shop for the day.
  8. Don’t expect bookings/sales on the day, couples like to go away and discuss what they have seen on the day. If they liked what you had to offer they will contact you after the fair.
  9. Remember that couples can sometimes be nervous, make them comfortable by asking about what they have planned already and where the are getting married.
  10. Help with advertising the fair, use your social media to talk about the events and maybe you could display a poster for the organiser. After all, every little bit of advertising help you and them.

I hope you find these tips helpful, happy planning.

Yours Truly

Kelly

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blog, Ideas /

5 alternatives to guest books…unique wedding ideas.

guestbook5

 

I really love looking back at the messages my friends and family wrote in the little notebook I laid on a table at my wedding but if I were to do it all over again I think I would choose something a bit quirkier…

  1. Ask your loved ones to leave a message on your initials, buy old or new letters, the ones above is from Etsy.
  2. Video booth – Such a great idea, imagine the messages before the drinks compared to after!
  3. Wall paper signing for your downstairs loo! How great would that be? Every time you spent a penny you’d be reminded of your day, you could even ask for people to do self portraits. Equally fun, a colouring in book – I found this on Etsy, see below on the left, imagine all those little dudes and dolls coloured in and signed.
  4. Get guests to sign your favourite book – now this is one for you bookworms and something that would be so gorgeous to pass on through a family.
  5. Vintage crockery signing – if you like a bit of retro china on your walls, why not get your guests to leave a message on theirs after their cake.

I hope you love these unique wedding ideas as much as I do.

Kelly

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