What will make your day stand out?
Having been through the process of putting a wedding together (from a third party perspective) recently, there were lots of discussions about what candles where going to be used, what flowers, where they should go, what to do on the walls of the reception venue, will we scatter rose petals, how many candles will we get, what centre pieces will we put on the tables etc, my advice is once again "not to sweat the small stuff" too much.
In my opinion, these are the 6 things you should not scrimp on, because people (or more importantly, you) will notice on the day:
1. Don't scrimp on your dress. This is the one item everyone will be looking at when you enter. It's the statement piece of the day. You are the statement piece of the day. No pressure! This doesn't mean that you have to have a $5,000 dress or anything. It just means get someone you trust to go shopping with you and get a dress that works with your body shape.
2. Don't scrimp on your food and wine. This is the one thing your guests will notice if it's not right. Make sure there is continuous service as wedding guests hate having empty glasses, particularly during speeches.
3. Don't scrimp on your photographer (and videographer). These will be the memories you have for the rest of your life. Get a good one that has been recommended by someone you know (if possible). I can vouch for Spencer Dungey in Perth (above) and Emma Sharkey in Adelaide (above). These two are real pros in the business. Their contact details are at the end of this article.
4. Don't scrimp on your speeches. By "scrimp" I mean, "don't rush" writing it. And tell all your other speech makers to do the same! Take some quiet time, alone to really think about what you want to say on the day. Look online to get hints from other people's wedding speeches. Check the protocol on what you definitely need to nail in your speech and then speak from the heart. It's fine to have notes with you on the day. Either write it out fully if that works for you, or make dot points that you can refer to, to keep you moving through in the order that you want to. I include the MC in this category too. This person, along with the music, can either make or break the evening.
5. Don't scrimp on the DJ or band. Make sure you brief the dj on what sort of music you want, but you should also rely on them to be able to read the room on the night. Once again, as is the case with photographers, go on a recommendation or one that you have experienced and enjoyed yourself at a previous wedding or event.
6. Don't scrimp on the celebrant. Yes, I know I'm a celebrant and I know I've said this before, but this person is going to be the person who will play the most important role on the day, bringing all of your guests together as one, to tell the story of your relationship and take you through sacred vows that will set you up for the next part of your life. This is the person who will be the formal start of your day and will set the tone for the rest of your day. Choose wisely. Choose well. You won't be disappointed. Don't go for a cheap one as they won't spend the time crafting a ceremony that is unique and befitting of your special day. Go for one who will spend the time to focus on you, your relationship and your guests.
To me, these are the six areas that will matter most on the day. These are the things you and your guests will notice most if they are awesome, and they will notice most if they are, well.... umm, not so awesome, if you get my drift.
To see a list of people I've worked with who I can personally vouch for, click here.
Steve Mummery is an authorised Marriage Celebrant. For reviews of his ceremonies, check his website at smcelebrant.com.au or facebook.com/smcelebrant/reviews.