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Planning a Wedding with Accessibility in Mind

Disability Rights Wedding Editorial

Preparing for one of the biggest days of your life can be as testing as it can be exciting, what with the multitude of things to think about. If you’re not organising the venue, you’re dreaming up your wedding invitations. If you’re not debating a dress with your mother, you’re talking your groom-to-be’s best man down from any eccentric goings on.

Additional accessibility needs can then add to your list of things to consider. Whether it’s you, your partner, or even some of your guests that require additional accessibility or mobility aids, making sure your wedding is suited to the needs of those attending is a must, to really make the most of the special day.

While accessibility has become a hot topic of conversation recently, there are still a number of locations and venues associated with weddings, that fail to provide enough accessible options to make your day as comfortable for everyone as possible. As such, mobility aid providers, Ability Superstore, have provided a few words of wisdom to help you plan your wedding with accessibility in mind.

Save the dates will come in handy

You’re engaged! Congratulations! There aren’t many occasions that make you feel as giddy as you do when your other half pops the question. Now, while you might think that sending a few save the date cards are just to let your nearest and dearest know when you plan on getting wed, you could in fact use it to find out about any accessibility needs.

Even if you don’t require any additional accessibility yourself, you might find that some of your guests might. With this in mind, create your guest list filled with those closest to you, and start filling in those ‘save the date’ cards. If you’re having your cards designed, you could add in a section that asks your guests if they have any accessibility needs. That way, you’re prepared well in advance, before the official invitations go out and before you have decided on your venue.

Don’t forget the plus ones! You don’t want to plan your wedding knowing that your guests don’t require any accessibility needs, only to the discover that their plus ones might. All it takes is asking your guests to think about their plus ones, too, when responding to your ‘save the date’ card.

Disability Rights Wedding Editorial

The various locations are key

Now that you know of any accessibility requirements both for the two of you and your guests, you can begin dreaming of your perfect wedding venue.

If you had any venues in mind beforehand, begin by doing a quick internet search to discover if they cater for accessibility. Bear in mind that if you’re looking to book an older venue, their accessibility might not be as obvious, so it’s always a good idea to get in touch with the venue to discuss your needs.

Reception venues and hotels

Think about reception locations, too. If you are planning on having a church wedding, for example, the chances are you will be throwing your reception in another venue nearby. As well as discussing the venue’s accessibility, you should also consider the distance between the wedding venue and the reception, as well as if there are any local taxis or car companies available to hire, should you or your guests need driving between the two.

Nearby hotels are well worth looking into, as well as their accessibility. Ideally, you would hope to find a hotel that meets your needs close by, but if not, transport may be required, especially after a night of dancing and celebrating!

Hen and stag dos

How about your hen and stag do? If you and/or your groom require extra accessibility when it comes to your ‘last night of freedom’, you don’t want to show up at the venue only to find they don’t cater to you or your guests’ needs. The same goes for your hen or stag do as it does the wedding venues; think about where you want to have it, and make the call to find out if they can provide the accessibility you need.

If you’re worried a night on the town isn’t going to be enjoyable, think about alternative ways to throw a party! From a weekend in a lodge to afternoon tea, a spa day to adrenaline fuelled activities, there’s plenty of ways to make the most of it without the worry of accessibility.

Top Tip: If you’ve spoken to managers of venues over the phone, don’t just take their word for it. Once they’ve said they can provide additional accessibility, book in a time to go and visit the venue, where they can show you what they can offer. You don’t want to be assured into thinking everything will be ok on the day, only to show up with little accessibility available.

Disability Rights Wedding Editorial

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Money Saving Wedding Hack: Supermarket Flowers

Money Saving Wedding Hack Supermarket Flowers1

There’s no denying that all the little added extras can really bump up the cost of your big day. If you’ve been reading the blog for a while (or even if you haven’t!) you may have started to realise that just because you’re having a wedding doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune. Buying your dress from a high street store, having ‘pot-luck’ catering, asking guests to BYO booze… there are so many creative ways to help make your budget stretch further.

Flowers, however, can be a tough nut to crack. If you’ve been swooning over big fluffy peonies and extravagant rose bouquets, then you will have quickly discovered that these popular blooms come with a hefty price tag… And let’s be honest, not everyone wants to spend that much on something that only lasts a day. But just because you’re having a budget wedding doesn’t mean your flowers can’t look like a million bucks.

Did you know that Lidl offers fresh everyday flowers at a fraction of the price of well-known florists and even other supermarkets? If you’re planning to DIY your wedding flowers you may not have considered Lidl, but their extensive year-round offering and bunches available from 95p makes them the perfect alternative flower option for weddings.

So instead of dropping a huge amount of cash on your bouquets, why not pop to the supermarket before your wedding (Lidl flowers last 10 days or more) and spend a couple of evenings with your bridesmaids, a couple of bottles of prosecco and embrace your inner florist!? Don’t worry about making them too perfect either, having an undone, homemade vibe is all part of the charm!

Money Saving Wedding Hack Supermarket Flowers

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Why You Should Have a Gift List (Even if you Already Live Together)

Why You Should Have a Gift List (Even if you Already Live Together) (4)

For many couples, the idea of creating a wedding gift list probably feels a bit awkward… like you’re expecting your guests to buy you something. Believe me, I know the feeling. It was my birthday last week and I felt so awkward about the whole “So what do you want for your birthday?” question that I just told everyone the same thing and ended up with three Jo Malone Oud and Bergamot candles. Not that that’s really a problem mind, it smells freaking amazing.

Believe it or not, the majority of your guests really do want to buy a present for your wedding. So here are six reasons why I think you should suck up the awkward and start that gift registry!

Lots of your guests will want to buy you a gift

Your wedding is one of the most special in your entire lives and most of your guests do actually want to give you a gift to commemorate that day. It’s also a chance for them to help you build your lives as a married couple and maybe even buy you a future heirloom that will forever remind you of them.

It’s makes it easy for your guests

A wedding gift list makes it much more straight-forward for your guests and you get what you want. It can actually be harder if there’s no gift list at all, since many of your guests will wonder what the protocol is, how much to spend, what you’ll find useful etc. Having a list also avoids my problem of duplicate gifts because once someone buys something for you, it comes off meaning you won’t end up with 37 Jo Malone candles (although OMG how good would your house smell?)

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You’ll have gifts to keep for ever

There aren’t many special occasions when you get to choose gifts that will become family heirlooms in the future. This is the time to register for something you might never have the money to buy for yourself.

You can ask for exactly what you want!

Gift lists are no longer boring or old-fashioned. Nowadays you can tailor-make a gift list to reflect your personal style. If you don’t want or need a new toaster, then you don’t have to ask for one! A Prezola gift list can include anything from homeware to honeymoon contributions, cash to charity donations!

Some guests think asking for cash is rude

Although there’s less of a taboo with asking for cash as there used to be, some guests (maybe your older ones) are often less keen on giving cash. They might not be sure how much to give, or are worried it’ll just go on boring things like bills! While you can add cash contributions to a Prezola gift list, you should still include plenty of physical items for your more traditional relatives.

Online gift list services are great for busy couples who like to do their ‘wedmin’ online

Unlike gift registries in high street shops, online gift lists tend to offer way more flexibility as you’re not limited to one store or chain. With Prezola, the UK’s leading specialist online wedding gift list company, you can add items to your list from anywhere online. They list over 30,000 products from 300 different shops including Wedgwood, Le Creuset, The White Company, Graham & Green and Soho Home. Using an online gift list is also super easy and means you can create and add to your list on the move or at home on the sofa, without having to go into a store to do so.

Using Prezola is completely free, including using their dedicated Personal Shopper service, free delivery of all your items and optional gift wrapping. If you want to include cash contributions, a honeymoon fund, charity donations, gift vouchers or to add bespoke gifts from sites they do not already represent, then there’s a flat one-off fee of just £59.

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Bridebook: The Digital Wedding Planner in Your Pocket

Bridebook The Digital Wedding Planner in Your Pocket (3)

Magazines, blogs, Pinterest, Facebook groups, YouTube… there are so many places that engaged couples can go to get ideas for their weddings. However finding inspiration is almost the easy bit, it’s getting down to the nitty gritty – taking those ideas and making them a reality – that is difficult!

Enter the online wedding planner, Bridebook.co.uk. Launched in September, the site has grown fast, with over 24,000 couples now using it to help them plan their weddings! Bridebook want to remove the headache surrounding wedding planning by offering couples one single online space where they can keep track of everything they’re going to need.

You can keep on top of your spending with their budget calculator, manage your RSVPs, track your guest list and even find your suppliers through their directory of over 139,000 UK wedding vendors!

Available both online and via their brand new iOS app (launched a month ago it’s already the #1 wedding planning app in the UK! Android launch is coming soon), the site is compromised of five main wedding planning tools: A checklist, the budget calculator, guest list management, a supplier shortlist/directory and advice.

Bridebook The Digital Wedding Planner in Your Pocket (4)

Checklist

Bridebook is completely customisable so when you sign up you can put in your wedding date and they will automatically break down your to do list into manageable tasks to do month by month, according to how far away your wedding date is. You can also add any of your own tasks (for example if a you want to be reminded to complete a payment to a supplier or go to an event).

Budget

Simply enter your ideal budget and their algorithm (based on the averages of tens of thousands of past weddings) breaks down how much you should aim to be spending on each aspect of your wedding. Even better is the column where you input how much you actually spend so you can keep track of where you are going over or under budget.

Guest list

The guest list tool allows you to add guests under your or your partner’s name (or both), a direct link to a guest’s plus one, their RSVP status, whether they are a day or evening only guest, and all of their information from address to dietary requirements. It’s an easy way to track all of your guests in one place, so whenever you get an email or text RSVP all you have to do is open the app (or go online) to add them.

Bridebook The Digital Wedding Planner in Your Pocket (5)

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Win a Made-to-Measure Wedding Dress from Leis Atelier!

Win a Made-to-Measure Wedding Dress from Leis Atelier! (13)

If you want to avoid the (sometimes scary) bridal shop experience the internet is your friend when it comes to finding your dream gown. Not only can you often find things cheaper (online retailers don’t have the overheads that bricks and mortar stores do) but the options tend to be much more creative – endlessly so in fact!

However finding somewhere you can trust to order a wedding dress online can be tricky. How do you know if the dress your ordering will arrive looking as you expected? How can you guarantee the quality of fabrics used will be up to scratch? How will you know if it’s even going to fit you?

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One such company who pride themselves on the quality of their gowns is Leis Atelier, an online wedding dress site that offers made-to-measure wedding dresses to brides of all cultures and all sizes. Their revolutionary system even allows you to input your exact measurements meaning your dress will fit you perfectly when it arrives.

With their dresses ranging from just £189-£429 (most of them 70% off retail price!) they won’t break the bank either!

“Leis Atelier is perfect for Rock n Roll Bride readers because we care about diversity”, they told me. “We cater to brides from all walks of life, all cultures, and all sizes. Our made-to-measure dresses are high quality, and affordable. Through our amazing fitting system, all brides have to do is send in their measurements after they purchase a gown.”

Win a Made-to-Measure Wedding Dress from Leis Atelier! (11) Win a Made-to-Measure Wedding Dress from Leis Atelier! (3)Win a Made-to-Measure Wedding Dress from Leis Atelier! (5)

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Win A Boho Wedding Dress from White + Lace

Win a wedding dress from White + Lace (1)

I just have to preface this post by saying that any bridal brand that uses llamas in their campaign photo shoot is OK in my book! Quite apart from their exceptional choice in models, Israel based design house White + Lace are dress designers that you’re definitely going to want to know about.

Launched in 2015, they not only hand make each and every one of their gorgeous gowns from their Tel Aviv studio, but they do so using only the highest quality of materials and fabrics.

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Their designs are influenced by bridal trends, but also high street fashion, meaning that their creations are modern, wearable and super, duper cool. Their newest collection, Boho Chic, features dresses that are both beautiful and flattering for brides wanting to creating an effortless and laid back look on their wedding day.

And with their prices ranging from just £300 to £1200 they won’t break the bank either!

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