Why you should ignore everyone’s wedding planning rules (including ours): An alternative guide to planning your wedding
We felt it was about time that we put together our own alternative wedding planning guide, one that encourages and empowers you to create a wedding that reflects you as a couple. Many couples that stumble across our eco wedding directory and blog tell us they suddenly feel at home amidst the often crazy world of weddings.
“I felt I had an affinity with your blog that inspired me to be confident in creating a wedding day that was meaningful to us as a couple.”
Here are our top 10 tips to create an alternative wedding planning guide. Take what you want and leave the rest. We’re not here to tell you what to do or how to do it, we just want to empower you to make your own choices and create a wedding that reflects you.
1. Pinterest – The Bane Of A Newly Engaged’s Life?
Don’t get us wrong we really do love Pinterest (<< go see if you don’t believe us), we can get lost on it for hours and it really is a great source of inspiration. HOWEVER, please don’t let all the beautiful styled images freak you out and suddenly make you think you need to have things you hadn’t even considered. Use it as a tool for ideas and leave it at that, don’t get wrapped up in recreating every styled image you see. Unless of course DIY is your bag and you have the time to do it stress-free.
2. Your Wedding Should Not Be Used As An Excuse To Spend Money You Don’t Have
Your wedding in not an excuse to spend more money than you have or are prepared to spend. Lots of couples will have a budget (in 2016 the average UK wedding cost – in our opinion an eye-watering – £25,000), but just because you set your budget at X amount doesn’t mean you need to find things to spend it all on.
Why not try working the opposite way. Start with no budget and by listing out the big things you’d love. Find out how much they cost, then list out your essentials and find out how much they cost. Add it all up. Finally, work out how much more you can, need or want to spend on your wedding. This might help you to focus on what you really want rather than just spending (or blowing) your budget.
It’s also worth accepting early on that (some of) your dreams will likely be dashed by “lack of money” (whether you are spending £2,500 or £25,000). Instead of feeling disheartened, see what you can dream up when you are forced to be creative and think outside the box, you might just get something even more wonderful.
Gemma and Nick’s flower filled cottage garden wedding with homegrown sweet peas and pale blue bridesmaids’ dresses
This Real Weddingsis one of those relaxed, family-filled days; brimming with joy and carefully chosen homemade details, it is unique yet classic and timelessly traditional.
Gemma and Nick, who met at university, were married in their beautiful local church and held their reception in a marquee adorned with borrowed bunting and homegrown flowers in the garden of Gemma’s family home.
I don’t think I will ever, ever tire of a flower crown, a bold statement I know but if you take a look at today’s beautiful bohemian hellebore wedding inspiration and the to-die-for spring flower crown I think you would agree that regardless of fashion trends they are pretty timeless.
Today’s inspiration shoot was lovingly curated by Beamsley Blooms and shot by Phase 2 Photography to showcase the possibilities of using seasonal British flowers for Spring brides and grooms, offering a stunning alternative to the more traditional Spring associated blooms. Clare from Phase 2 Photography explains, “The aim of the shoot was to let the pure, natural beauty of the flowers speak for themselves and give brides an idea of what can be achieved with these stunning flowers.”
Susanne from Beamsley Blooms goes on to give us a little more information about the inspiration behind the shoot for us…
I absolutely love it when rosemary is in flower, with those tiny pale blue flowers it takes on a new dimension to its very green version that we mainly see and associate with it here in England. We have featured rosemary and other herbs in abundance here on the blog because they have so many lovely qualities – their fragrance being number one in my opinion.
This simple white wedding cake decorated with flowering rosemary is a wonderful example of how you can achieve a pretty and less conventional look without spending lots of money or time. Invest in a great quality wedding cake, made from organic and fair trade ingredients, and then just decorate it simply with naturally grown herbs.
If you are a bride-to-be visiting our blog, it is highly likely that you adore seasonal, British grown flowers, just like us. Every year the weather fluctuates, but I still feel slightly anxious by the variations in the seasons and the impact that will have on locally grown blooms.
Perhaps as a bride-to-be this is something you have concerns about, especially after this long and unseasonably warm winter, followed by the recent cold snap with hail and snow across various parts of the country. And yet as I write this, today we have eaten lunch in the garden and have hats and flip flops on it’s so warm!
Dreaming of a church filled with cow parsley
Every year as we enter spring, my mother likes to reflect on the weather in relation to the cow parsley and whether it would have been out for our wedding date of 21st May (I chose May because I love the cow parsley lined lanes of my childhood home in the Cotswolds). Now let me explain, despite getting married 5 years ago, my mum still contemplates this detail every year – I can quite imagine it continuing for many years to come!
I dreamed of a cow parsley filled church in which to get married, and this is what we got (phew). However, in the run up to our wedding there were lots of nervous moments – was the cow parsley going to be out or was it going to be over? So ever since, even as early at March, my mum starts to comment on the weather and it’s impact on the cow parsley’s development in their part of the country. Luckily I don’t have to worry about the status of the cow parsley, but I know there are many of you who will have similar anxieties.
A Day in the Life … Blue Poppy: a visit to their coastal cutting garden in Scotland with wildflower meadows in the height of summer
Over the years of working in the wedding industry, I have come to realise that some of my favourite parts are the ‘behind the scenes’, the true getting to know the people behind a business, and this is what we hope to do with this series called A Day In The Life. Today we are up in Scotland with Cath from Blue Poppy, reminiscing about those hot summer days when the flower beds are bursting with colour.
If you’d like to see behind the scenes on some of our other recommended suppliers, then do check out the full A Day In The Life series so far, which includes fellow flower farmer florists Tammy from Wild Bunch, Natalya and Fiona from PYRUS, and Becca and Maz from The Garden Gate Flower Company.
So it’s over to Catherine to share her day in the life at Blue Poppy…
A coastal cutting garden
Last August, at the height of summer, the fantastic Chris and Gillian from The Curries came to document an afternoon with us. Looking back over the winter, we had time to reflect on what Chris and Gillian – seeing the garden for the first time – were able to capture.
Blue Poppy is myself, Catherine (florist), my mum Ann (gardener) and Frida (our old Jack Russell who patrols the garden and scares off anything likely to nibble seedlings). We run a florist farmer business from a small holding on the east coast of Scotland.
Tim and Sarah’s autumn barn wedding on a rustic Kent farm with gold pumpkins, twinkly lights and a tweed suit
Today’s relaxed autumn barn wedding perfectly showcases the benefits of using seasonal and local produce and suppliers within your big day. I am sure we all love seeing what each new season brings, and it is so lovely to see when a wedding truly embraces the season they fall in.
Tim and Sarah’s wedding does just that, featuring the most stunning dahlias, quirky transport, a fire pit, a groom in tweed, a bride in wellies, and some copper pumpkins – because what autumn wedding wouldn’t be complete without a few for good measure.
Tim and Sarah, 17th October 2015
Tim and Sarah were married on an autumn’s day in the gorgeous barn at The House Meadow at Worsenden Farm surrounded by their friends and family. The whole day was perfectly captured by the wonderful TNWC Recommended Supplier Livvy Hukins Photography. To accompany the beautiful images it would only be fair for us to now pass you over to the beautiful bride Sarah to tell you a little bit more about their big day…