What sort of ceremony do you want?
Do you want it to be formal or casual? Do you want it to be indoor or outdoor? What if it rains? Do you want to involve family and friends in readings and rituals? Are there kids to be considered? Or is it all too hard and you just want to elope after reading the first few questions of this article!
These are the questions your celebrant should be asking you when you meet for the first time. Chances are that you've already thought of most of them, but it's their job to make sure you have thought through the whole process.
A few years back, it was a much simpler process. You went to a church, asked the minster or priest if a date was available and you booked in your wedding for 4pm on the Saturday.
These days, church weddings are just one of the options and your wedding can truly be a reflection of both of your personalities. Your wedding (and reception) can pretty much be anywhere you want it to be. But long with that comes a lot of questions and sometimes hurdles. For example, if you want to get married in a park, you need to make sure that you let the local council know in case other people have also booked the park for the same time on the same day.
Just in the last week or so, some friends told me about some people they knew who recently turned up at a park to get married even after booking it with the local council but there were a bunch of ladies who had settled in for (ironically) a hen's party in the exact same spot. When they were informed that a wedding had been booked in that spot, they refused to move, saying that it was first in, first served! I'm pretty sure karma will play a role in that wedding when it happens, somehow, in some way. Personally, I feel this was pretty poor form on their behalf. But there you go, what do you do in that situation. Who do you call etc.
So there are lots of different elements and hazards to think about in planning an outdoor wedding to think about. Another classic one is making sure the sprinklers don't come on in the park during the ceremony - at least everyone will always remember that one!
In my experience, it's better to make sure you choose the right celebrant for you. It's their job to make sure your ceremony is memorable for the right reasons - not just because the sprinklers came on during the ceremony and drowned everyone, including the bride.
Steve Mummery is an authorised civil celebrant based in Perth, Australia. If you would like to talk to him about your future wedding and the style of ceremony you would like, contact him on 0418 897 215 or check the website smcelebrant.com.au