Category Archives: Wedding Planning Advice

Wedding Traditions, What Are They Good For?

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The story behind the flying wedding dress

I was chatting to my newly engaged sister last week who told me there was no way in hell she’d be doing a first dance and that come to think of it, walking down the aisle seemed mortifying and silly too. “But you have to walk in somehow,” I replied, “you can’t just ‘poof!’ and appear at the end of the aisle!”

As someone who champions alternative weddings day in, day out, I actually surprised myself at how horrified I was that she wouldn’t walk down a set ‘aisle’. I think because, for me, walking into the church and being given away by my father was such a special and emotional part of the wedding, I couldn’t ever imagine not wanting to have that experience. But that’s the thing with getting married in your own way, there really are no rules any more.

If my sister is worried about walking in and being the centre of attention, she could walk in with her fiancé, or there could be a circular ceremony set up (with no aisle at all), or we could all walk in together like a big rugby scrum around her – there are plenty of other options!

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Your Wedding Does Not Have To Be The ‘Best Day Of Your Life’

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Don’t get me wrong, a wedding is undoubtedly a very important day, but it is not your one shot at happiness or your singular life defining moment. By that I mean, even if the day was a complete disaster and everything that could go wrong did, the actual act of getting married is just one little flash in a life full of potentially joyful occasions!

The pressure the wedding industry puts on couples is ridiculous. “Oh it’s the most important day of your life!”, “This will be the best day you’ve ever had!” they squawk. And yes, while it is undoubtedly a special day, it does not have to be the “best day of your life”.

Our wedding was was absolutely one of my top five life highlights, but I feel like claiming it was “the best” would be a bit of a lie. That’s not to say that our wedding wasn’t completely amazing, but so was buying our first house, quitting my day job to blog full time, launching my own magazine… There are many more days in my life that I’ve loved and boiling your complete happiness down to one very specific and pre-planned moment only sets you up for disappointment if things don’t go exactly to plan. It also makes you put an extreme amount of pressure on yourself to make everything utterly perfect.

Can you think of any other event in your life that you have amazing memories from that was planned to the very last second? Of course not! Most of your fondest times had a bit of spontaneity around them – those nights out you didn’t even bother to re-do your make up and ended up on a wild adventure, the time you bumped into this cute guy and ended up falling in love, when you booked a last minute holiday and had the most amazing two weeks ever! These moments of unexpected joy are rarely pre-planned to the last minute detail, and I think there’s something to be said for letting your wedding be a bit like this too.

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Self Esteem, Body Confidence and Learning to Love Yourself

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If you’ve been reading my blog (or following me on Instagram!) for a while you’ll probably have already heard of Gala Darling. Not only is she one of my best friends, but I’ve been raving about her, and her message of Radical Self Love, for quite some time!

I first discovered her blog in early 2009 (check out my adorable fangirling) but it wasn’t until happenstance enabled us to meet IRL a few years later that I knew we were kindred spirits. There are just some people you meet who instantly light up your life and make the world seem like a more positive, happier place. Gala does this for me every single day and I’m so honoured to call her my friend.

If you too want to live a more magical, happy life then Gala’s brand new book will show you exactly how to do it. In Radical Self Love: A Guide To Loving Yourself And Living Your Dream you’ll begin to discover exactly what makes you so magnificent, and you’ll uncover a litany of tools and techniques to help you manifest a life that bursts with magic, bliss and adventure. I only wish this book was around when I was a depressed young adult consumed by my eating disorder. I really do feel like it should be mandatory reading for every single woman on the planet.

I could not be prouder of my girl for following her dream to becoming a best selling author. So to celebrate the release (and the fact that it hit the #1 spot in the self help category on Amazon!) I asked her if she’d like to share some tips for brides that might be struggling with their self esteem or body confidence. Of course she enthusiastically obliged.

1. Learn to love your body

Obsessing about the way we look can be one of the worst parts of getting married. Instead of freaking out, going on a crash diet that makes you feel like shit, and going on punishing runs, choose to be kind to your body instead. One of the best ways to do this is to take a burlesque class! (In New York City, Jo Weldon’s School of Burlesque is an awesome place to start, but there are classes all around the world.) In addition to learning a simple striptease — sure to delight your partner on your wedding night — you’ll discover the beauty, power, and agency of your own body. Few things are more liberating. Hell YES!

2. Remember that what other people think of you – or your wedding – is not your business!

When you’re looking at blogs like Rock n Roll Bride, which showcase the coolest weddings on the planet, it’s totally normal to feel intimidated and worry about whether your wedding will “measure up”. Will it be cool enough? Will it be Instagrammable? Will your wedding’s hashtag look as good as you hope?

Don’t get caught up in appearances. As much as we’d all love to have beautiful photos to look back on, ask yourself, what’s more important? Marrying someone you truly adore and having a magical day, or fussing with place-settings and obsessing about how many likes the photos get on Instagram?

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The Six Biggest Wedding Planning Concerns & How to Quash Them!

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recently asked my Facebook fans what their biggest worries were about getting hitched, and oh my goodness, do you lot have a LOT of things on your mind! Here are the five main stress factors I saw pop up again and again, plus some practical ways you can overcome them.

“I’m worried about looking and feeling my best”

Us women can be hard on ourselves and our appearance at the best of times. Throw in being the centre of attention on one of the biggest days of your life in the mix and it’s a recipe for self-deprecation overload! I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve had brides tell me they feel like they’re not going to feel pretty on the day. They’re worried about everything from feeling fat to their make-up smearing, and from getting sweat patches to having cankles! We really are super hard on ourselves aren’t we?

First of all, you ARE going to look amazing on your wedding day! If you choose a dress that flatters you, you get a great make up artist and you pick a good deodorant like Sure Maximum Protection, you’ll have nothing to fret about! Twice as strong as the leading antiperspirant, Sure Maximum Protection Stress Control offers unrivalled protection against sweat and odour so it won’t let you down on your big day. Just remember you’re marrying someone that thinks you’re gorgeous each and every day. You could turn up in your PJs and they’d still think you looked amazing!

“Our families don’t get on!”

Family politics are a tricky one, but unless they’re complete arseholes, it’s unlikely that they’re going to purposely cause a scene at your wedding. However if you are worried, I would advise that you to have a quiet word with the potential perpetrators ahead of time and voice your concerns. Remember, they love you and hopefully (!) want your day to be a pleasant one.

Divorced parents can be tricky too, so how about instead of having a top table you have each parent ‘host’ separate ones and the two of you have a sweetheart table instead? Who says you have to go traditional if you’re family dynamics are anything but!? 

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Three Vital Things All Couples Should Discuss Before They Get Married

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There’s nothing more exciting than planning your wedding, whether you go for a large lavish affair or a more understated, personal day, there is always plenty to think about and arrange! But with all the excitement and celebration going on around you, it’s very easy to get caught up in the moment and forget that your wedding is about more than just the day itself.

When you’re in a relationship, you obviously get to know each other pretty well. But sometimes it isn’t until you actually get married that you start to consider the more serious stuff. Some of these topics can be uncomfortable to talk about, but making sure you do so is vital if you want your marriage to last the distance.

1. Money

Money is one of the main things that couples fight about. Getting on top of your joint finances before you walk down the aisle, and maybe even establishing a few ground rules, will help you nip some of the disputes that can arise in the bud.

It’s a good idea to sit down and access a free credit report like this one from Experian CreditExpert for each of you, this will allow you to identify any potential problems, and find ways to address them. Its is particularly important that you discuss your individual attitudes to money. Even if you plan to keep a lot of your finances separate, arguments about bills, past debts or one partner’s perceived overspending can cause problems very quickly.

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How to Banish Your Inner Bridezilla

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Planning a wedding is one of the most stressful times in most people’s lives. All that expectation, all those people to please, all that money being spent, wanting to make everything just perfect… It’s no wonder that there are whole reality shows about brides flipping the hell out!

While they might be seriously entertaining to watch from the outside, if you’re not careful it can be all to easy too start to exhibit some of those trademark bridezilla tenancies yourself. Here are some things to think about to help prevent you turning into a terrifying monster,

Realise that people aren’t out to hurt you

If people make snarky comments about something to do with your wedding, please remember that they are not criticising YOU as a person! It can be all to easy to take things to heart when it comes to weddings, especially if you feel you’ve put your all into something. People on the outside don’t always realise this, or know how personal the choices you’re making are.

So if someone pulls a face at the fact your not wearing white, that you’re serving fish n chips instead of a fancy dinner or that you’ve booked an Elvis impersonator as your officiant just shrug it off and realise that although it might not be to their taste, THAT DOESN’T MATTER. It’s your wedding and the fact that they might not pick something doesn’t mean it’s not the right choice for you. Don’t take these things to heart.

Think about other people’s feelings

However it can be VERY EASY to get wrapped up in the “Its my day and what I say goes” mentality. Do not turn into a brat. People want to be there for you but it also doesn’t mean that they need to be at your beck and call 24/7 or that they are your punching bag.

Your friends and family want to celebrate with you (and might have travelled a lot way to do so) so be gracious and kind at all times. Especially think about your parents’ feelings. Remember they have probably been looking forward to this moment since the day you were born so don’t turn your nose up too high at their opinions. Let them down gently if you don’t agree with something they’ve suggested.

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