To view more expert advice on a different topic, please select one from the list below.
Styling your day
Q. I have been looking at Pinterest every night and my moodboard is starting to become a bit jumbled. How do I get back on track?
A. Jodie Knott says: Try not to become overwhelmed by all of your choices. As soon as you start to worry, you start to put more pressure on yourself. Your wedding day should be a day to remember, not a day to worry about the bridesmaid dresses matching the florals.
Before you start to look through your moodboard, sit down with your partner and begin to visualise your day, what few words immediately come to mind? Rustic, elegant, intimate? Then also think about what you don't want at your wedding, a few things may have slipped through the net and made it onto your current moodboard without you realising.
Baring these few words in mind begin to have a look through your current moodboard. Save the first five to 10 images that immediately jump out at you, but try not to save five of the same things, keep it a mix of florals, table settings, stationery etc. Each image should bring something different to your new moodboard.
With your saved images write down what it is that you love about the image. Is it the colours, the textures, and do these match up to your vision?
As you start to pin your images to a new board these should begin to reflect your overall vision and colour palette. If you do begin to be swayed by other pins, resort back to this mood board and think to yourself will I love this image in one, two, three months' time or do I just like it in this moment?
When it comes to your moodboard, this should be a reflection of the both of you and your personalities.
Jodie Knott, Knotted in Love
Style it out
Q. We love the idea of a tipi wedding, but it feels like a total blank canvas. How do we style it to make it our own?
A. Charlie Land says: The fabulous thing about a tipi is that not only is it a blank canvas to decorate, but it also looks wonderful with no decoration other than fairylights! However, if you would like to put your own stamp on the structure, then there are lots of ways to do this.
We install a hanging point at the centre of each of our tipis for you to use. Our couples often choose to install floral hoops and foliage here, but they also look amazing with a chandelier, a boho macramé hanging or a sparkling glitter ball.
There are also lots of draping points throughout the tipi and all the timber poles are exposed and available for you to dress. Outside, we love to have festoon lighting strung between the tops and along your entrance walkway to make the outside look just as magical as the inside.
Charlie Land, Totem Tipi
A wedding to remember
Q. There are so many venues to choose from. How do we narrow down our choices and find the right place for us?
A. TJ Patel says: The venue and food are without a doubt the most talked-about aspects of any wedding. The venue is the first thing your guests will see, and whether it's indoors or outdoors, you want it to be serene, comfortable and unforgettable. Look for somewhere that feels welcoming and warm, with character and charm to make it memorable. During the pandemic, you want to know that you and your loved ones are safe. We're part of the IHG group, so we follow strong brand standards alongside essential health and safety procedures.
With so many venues available to see at the touch of a button, we advise you to always view your shortlist in person to get a feel for it. Can you envision your big day there? Does it have everything you need? Is it flexible? Do they offer the food you want for your special day? Another key element is catering. The menu needs to be carefully tailored with a mouth-watering selection to make a statement and leave your guests amazed. Great food will always get people talking!
TJ Patel, Holiday Inn Leeds Bradford
Burst with joy!
Q. We want to have a huge wedding celebration when the pandemic is over. How can we dress our venue to create a real party feel?
A. Jacqui Saxon says: You will have waited for what seems like a lifetime for your wedding, and you'll want to give your loved ones an unforgettable occasion. Stunning balloon decor is a really cost-effective way to dress your venue and wow your guests. Ballon art isn't all about kids' parties and balloon animals. I promise all my couples that the creations will still be floating and enchanting guests by midnight – my balloons are always the last ones at the party!
I love meeting wedding couples at my workshop where you can see my latest designs and we can discuss how to make your day extra special. There are so many different styles and colours available, which we can choose together to help make your big day pop!
Jacqui Saxon, The Ultimate Balloon Company Ltd
Small but perfectly formed
Q. We're now planning a micro-wedding for 15 people early next year. How can we adapt our large venue to make it feel more intimate?
A. Hayley Melling says: There are key elements to focus on when turning your venue into a more cosy space for your micro-wedding:
- Zoning. The most effective way to make a large space feel more personal is to create separate zones throughout the day. For example, one area for your ceremony, which can be turned around for your wedding breakfast, and one for your drinks reception, which can be reworked into your evening celebration space.
- Styling. Why not hire some gorgeous flower walls or hang some beautiful drapes to make the area feel cosier? You could hire real trees to break up the space and add some amazing natural decor. If your venue has high ceilings, tall decorations will help to fill the empty space.
- Lighting. We're talking fairylights, candles, disco balls – anything that creates a warm glow, rather than a harsh bright light that will emphasise the size of the space.
- Table plan. If you originally planned for multiple round tables, then one long banquet table may be a better fit for a small wedding breakfast. Not only are all your loved ones effectively sat on the top table, but it's also a great way to fill the space without your tables looking sparse.
Hayley Melling, The Oakwood at Ryther