Welcome to our take on the A-Z of Weddings (#WeddingAlphabet). Each #WeddingWednesday here on The WED Blog, we'll cover some key wedding elements for each letter of the alphabet from A-Z. This Week's letter is 'A'....
A is for...
Your aisle will set the scene to your wedding story, it will be often be the first area where your guests really get the feel of your decor and wedding vibe. It's also, most importantly, the setting to one of the most special walks of your life, the moment you first see your other half and make your promise to one-another, and it's the turning point to the rest of your lives together.
So you want to make it really special - what ever that means to you!
Think about what really matters to each of you - perhaps you love the outdoors, so a woodland wedding or an aisle leading up to to a lake would be the perfect whimsy. If you're romantics, think about creating the perfect ambience with a walkway lined with fresh petals and clusters of candles that move with the light breeze of you passing by. bohemian styling might include hanging macramés, dried grass/flower arrangements, geometric arches, vintage rugs, and hanging tassels and fringe, and lanterns.
Other elements to consider will include the decor on and around the altar or signing table, wedding arches, chair decor (such as drapes or sashes and jars of flowers hanging from inner-aisle chairs), aisle runners, and decorations for any other windows, ledges and surfaces around the room.
Another element often overlooked with the aisle is the entrance where the procession will walk from - an arch or drapes by the doors, tall urns of flowers, bay trees either side at the back of the aisle, and so on... Get More Aisle Decor Inspo HERE
Your Arrival/Reception drinks will usually take place after the ceremony and is where the the official wedding portraits will be taken while guests tuck into a variety of refreshments - often cocktails and canapés.
As a staple of such an occasion, you might love the idea of a crisp, refreshing glass of your favourite bubbly during this time, but you might be concerned it won't suit everybody.
You could opt for a selection of two or more drinks - many couples go for prosecco alongside a summer beer/larger option (such as bottles of Corona, Peroni, or San Miguel). It might also be important to allow a soft drink option for non-drinkers and young guests - so do consider this if necessary.
Alternatively you might find it easier to arrange for a pre-paid bar during this time but your budget or wish to slow-down the alcohol intake might not make this so desirable. Some cost-friendly ideas might be to offer prosecco mixers for a self-serve 'Pimp-my-Prosecco' bar with an assortment of fresh fruits and juices for Mimosas and Bellinis. This not only halves the prosecco (£££) requirement, but also reduces guests' alcohol consumption - and they taste lush! Get more Arrival Drinks Inspiration on our dedicated Pinterest Board HERE
You might be able to stretch the budget a little to allow an assortment of cocktails, one of our favourite drinks selections included Passionfruit Martinis (just add vanilla vodka) and mason jars of Pina Coladas (just add rum).
Whatever you decide to do, make sure to have some water available - we recommend large drinks dispensers - such as these - in a shaded space for guests to help themselves. Hydration is important on a hot day, especially alongside alcohol and your guests will really appreciate it!
If you'd like to zhuzh this up a little, how about layering-up some vintage crates on a table to create some height for your drinks display, and offering dispensers of mocktails such as orange-lemonade, sparkling-elderflower, and other summery cordials.
There's lots of creative ways to display your drinks to make them that much more special - check out our fab drinks wall idea.
Make sure to ask your bar team to have a little something mixed up for you as the guests of honour - a little celebratory beverage for the newly-weds. Perhaps there's some signature cocktails you've enjoyed on a special trip together...? Treat yourselves - you deserve it!
There's various announcements to cover with weddings. Choosing which announcements you'd like to make and how, where and when to them might be worth considering ahead of time. Here's a list of some key announcements and some ideas to help spread the word...
1) Engagement Announcement - your friends and family might be about to witness the big moment, but for those more intimate proposals and for loved-ones further-afield, it might important tho consider who you tell when, and how. You don't want your nearest and dearest finding out from a distant acquaintance - it should come from you!
Even if you don't put too much pressure on this announcement, it's definitely important to consider the feelings of those closest to you who would like to hear the news sooner than others and directly from you, rather than a text message or facebook announcement. Even if they live away, a video call is likely to be greatly appreciated.
We think the most organised way to cover all of this is for the 'proposer' to have pre-arranged an informal gathering of your favourite people soon-after the proposal so that you can take a couple of days to enjoy your engagement in quiet before then spreading the word to as many of your key people as quickly and easily as possible. As the news is sure to travel quickly as soon as you make the announcement, it might be a good idea to also have a pre-arranged group video call or set some time aside to do the rounds in person/over the phone once the most important people know. We'll cover Engagement Parties later in our weekly 'A-Z of Weddings' column. But foe now, check out These Great Ideas for Engagement Announcements
2) Save-The-Dates - these are used to spread the basic 'place, date and time' details of your upcoming nuptials before you send out the official invitations. The 'proper' invitations tend to be something that you'll take time to design once you know the theme and vibe of your venue, colour scheme, etc. whereas the 'Save-the-Dates' are an interim method to ensuring all of the important details are received by your guests as soon as possible. Once you've booked your venue, it's important to get the information out to your wedding guests quickly, to ensure everybody can make the necessary arrangements with work/other commitments to be there!
There's many ways to get the word out - you might choose a physical item that you send out to your guests in the post such as a simple card to match your other wedding stationery, a magnet that guests can keep on their fridge as a handy reminder, or another creative trinket - there's so many ideas across the internet - we love Etsy and Pinterest for researching these items. Other, more cost-effective ways to communicate your wedding booking, might be a text message, creating a private wedding website and sending around a direct link to your guests, or launching a private Facebook Event.
We'll cover more Save-The-Date ideas later in our 'A-Z of Weddings' column, but all we need to say for now is that you should at least have a good idea of what you're doing for these soon after your engagement ready to send out as soon as possible after booking your venue.
3) Announcing the Couple - after the ceremony, photos and arrival drinks/canapés, your guests will be called inside for the Wedding Breakfast. We always recommend allowing the Wedding Coordinator and staff to oversee the seating, while you and your partner take some time alone together (you won't get many!)
Once everybody is seated, it is lovely to have somebody (often the Wedding Coordinator or Best Man) announce you into the room. What this means, is that they 'tap a glass' and ask everybody to be upstanding and put their hands together for the happy couple. You would then walk through all of your clapping and cheering guests, to your seats. From there, it's a great lead-in to the Speeches, or to have the announcer ask everybody to take their seats for the meal - whichever you prefer to do first.
This announcement is a great alternative to a receiving-line to transition nicely from the drinks reception to the meal, or as an additional celebratory moment to your big day.
That wraps things up for the first post of our A-to-Z of Weddings column. We've chosen 'Aisle', 'Arrival Drinks' and 'Announcements' for our take on 'A', but there's so many more 'A'-mazing elements you might consider for your big day. Here's a few more to get you started...
- Ascot Tie
Got more 'A's to add? Love this blog? Ideas on what you'd like to see us cover in the future? Let us know in the comments or on our socials!