It’s a little-known fact that when you get engaged, your aura changes colour to alert people that you are ready and willing to hear all of their unsolicited wedding advice. Pay no mind to the fact that the would-be-advice-giver got married four decades ago. Ignore that much of it is second, third and even fourth-hand advice, “Oh so your work friend’s son’s friend got married at a caravan park and they saved heaps of money? Awesome they definitely sound like someone I should listen to.” Obviously, you have to completely disregard the fact that they have the literal opposite tastes and interests than you, and just stand there and Take. All. That. Advice. Right?
NO FUCKING WAY.
Like I said to my mum when I was pregnant, ‘The advice I want is the advice I ask for,’ and it was the best boundary-setting I had ever done. It made me realise that politely listening to the unending stream of other people’s opinions about what you should do about your life, doesn’t serve anyone. Meaningful connection is not made through the one-sided pushing of opinions, nor through the simmering resentment that builds from feeling accosted with opinions that you never asked for and that are not at all appropriate for your life.
Add in that little thing called social media, and you’ve literally got the whole damn world giving you their opinions. Lordy, it’s enough to make the chillest of the friggin’ chill run for the hills.
Scotland’s Covid wedding rules include a blanket ban on alcohol until 17th May, reopening a years-long debate about dry receptions. Thankfully, we’ve moved on from the days of needing a drink in hand to have a good time. Haven’t we…? We asked the award-winning comedy writers at Speechy how to keep wedding speeches funny without the help of the ultimate social lubricant.
Dry weddings are fairly uncommon but – whether down to religious reasons, the Covid wedding rulebook, or simply as a lifestyle choice – they are on the rise. And without the usual bar and dancefloor antics, the speeches may well become the epicentre of your day, so they need to be on point.
It’s fair to assume some guests will be sceptical about sitting through a booze-free toast – as Ernest Hemingway famously wrote, ‘I drink to make other people more interesting’. That’s why it’s so important to add laughter to proceedings via your speeches. Don’t worry, we’ll walk you through how…
A clear-headed audience is certainly a more discerning one. A crowd with its wits about it will be even less likely to laugh at recycled wedding gags so, first off, step the hell away from Google. It is not your friend.
The internet is a wonderful tool for things like wedding décor inspo and reminding yourself which day the bins go out, but it offers suspiciously few ideas for truly original wedding speeches. You’ll want to make sure your humour is fresh, witty and bespoke. Sober guests are less likely to heckle and ad lib – this might be both a good and a bad thing, but ultimately gives you space to deliver your speech without distraction. If the bride’s nan guffaws throughout, you’re either doing something right or she’s managed to smuggle a hipflask into the venue.
COMEDY MOCKTAIL INGREDIENTS
There’s a basic recipe for a standout speech, so try the following advice – it’s worth a shot winks.
Honesty – Comedians get their best material from real life because it’s properly funny. Guests aren’t interested in some fantasy bride and groom. They know you’re not that pure so give them what they’re really after – the truth. Make the ordinary extraordinary.
Hyperbole – Keeping it real doesn’t mean you can’t jazz things up. If you’re the best man, exaggerate the traits your audience will already recognise in the newlyweds and feel free to put a slapstick spin on your anecdotes. Send yourself up while you’re at it.
Swearing – Just because it’s a sober wedding, it doesn’t mean the guests have suddenly turned into saints. Resist the urge to censor yourself if a potty mouth is how the crowd know and love you. Like any wedding speech, it depends on the audience demographic but a few bollocks, bloodies or arses adds enough of an edge to loosen people up.
Confidence – Enjoy yourself. It feels good to make people laugh. Like, really good. And after a year of pretending to enjoy Zoom parties, everyone will be ready to put on some suave-looking garms and be entertained in person. Believe us, they’re practically holding the belly laughs in before you’ve even started.
Mindfulness isn’t just something you hear about on Yoga Influencer Instagram and your long-forgotten Headspace app. Being fully present and engaged in the moment is an important life skill, and it’s much better honed without the distraction of inebriants. Taking alcohol out of the equation means none of the usual blurred memories or fuzzy flashbacks. Your audience is present. Like, bright eyed, bushy tailed present. This means they’re likely to actually remember the speech, so make sure it’s memorable for the right reasons.
If you want to hire suppliers who are inclusive, diverse, anti-racist, pro-LGBTQIA+ and thoughtful about how they run their businesses then black business owner Autumn Rabbitts has lots of great advice and things to think about/ ask your potential suppliers.
Picking your suppliers is one of most fun and important things to do when organising your wedding. Your day needs to feel like it is 100% tailored for you, your partner and family. If they are raging racists, homophobic or climate change deniers and you are not, then you might have a problem. However, most suppliers don’t tend to advertise that they are these things on their websites, so how can you be sure you’re giving your hard-earned cash, and putting your day in the hands of people whose values you align with?
You need to look for certain behaviour to ensure your photographer and/or videographer can capture the day beautifully no matter who their subjects are. Although having a handful of people with different skin tones in a portfolio is lovely to see, remember to look at how and when they were added. Does it seem like they were added as a knee jerk reaction to the newly supported global Black Lives Matter movement, or were they regularly featured pre-June 2020? If the former, have they almost immediately gone back to posting only white, cis-gendered and non-disabled people once the noise on social media about BLM died down?
Is the editing on darker skin tones as well executed as on lighter ones? You want to make sure you are hiring someone who can capture you in all of your beauty. You’ll soon see a pattern.
With COVID-related restrictions still very much up in the air and the weather finally getting warmer, many 2021 couples are choosing to elope outside. Today, photographers Jo and Patrick of Enchanted Bride have some top tips and things for you to think about if you’d like to follow suit!
An outdoor intimate wedding or elopement is the perfect choice right now because it is safe, sustainable, eco-friendly and kind to our planet. All you need is love, a sense of adventure, and maybe some good hiking boots. As well as keeping the planet smiling, your bank balance will thank you too as there won’t be expensive venue hire costs to contend with AND your pictures will be incredible – I mean, what’s not to love?
Since the pandemic, couples are realising there are many more options available to them and are focusing more on what is important. The great thing about having an outdoor wedding is it is easy to be flexible, it’s COVID safe andis much easier to reschedule.
Big weddings create a huge amount of waste. By having a small guest list, not sending out paper invites or using huge amounts of flowers and decorations, you reduce your carbon footprint. You won’t need to spend money decorating your outdoor ceremony location, nature is always the best backdrop. It also saves you time setting up and packing away, and you’re not buying anything that will only be used once.
Outdoor, celebrant-led elopements are cost effective. You will be able to save thousands by not hiring a licensed venue with the licensed ceremony room and their Registrar. This will allow you to spend money on what’s important for you.
DO WE NEED AN CELEBRANT OR OFFICIANT?
In England and Wales, an outdoor ceremony is not (yet!) legal so you will still need to go to the Register office to sign the paperwork. Therefore you do not HAVE to have a celebrant for your outdoor elopement, but having one is something we always encourage. A celebrant will be able to work with you to create and conduct your wedding ceremony for you, and make it really personal and special.
We’ve been ripping up the rule book on weddings for a while now; ditching the white wedding dress, hanging out with your groom the night before and holding our own down the aisle (rather than being ‘given away’). So, why do we still feel pressured to keep with tradition when it comes to the bachelorette?
Hen parties have evolved so much in the last few years – from a one-night ‘last fling before the ring’ the night before the wedding to a weekend away with your besties a month or so before. But much like trends, traditions aren’t for everyone. Not everyone is going to like this season’s Balenciaga-esque wide-legged trousers and, understandably, not everyone is going to want to play to the regular hen party rules (including when to have it).
Here’s five reasons why its okay – perhaps even preferable – to hold your hen party way after the wedding day…
LOVE IS NOT CANCELLED
With COVID having disrupted nuptials for over 12 months now, there are few couples who haven’t been affected by the global pandemic. While some have turned to their calendars and postponed their wedding by actual years, others have been inching the date back in the hope that restrictions will lift sooner rather than later. With the government’s latest announcements, many couples have their hopes pinned on June 21st, but where does that leave the hen? While your wedding date might be safe (for the moment), the planning of pre-wedding hen and stag parties has gone swiftly out the window.
For some, the hen and stag are the highlight of their events calendar; even more so than the wedding itself. They offer up a time to relax and reconnect with friends; make new memories and reminisce the old. To ditch that wild Bach you’ve been planning would be heart-breaking, especially when anyone planning a wedding in the last few years has been through enough. So, take your finger off the ‘delete’ button, and tap ‘postpone’ instead, because BOY do you deserve to keep your long-awaited celebration.
Having wedding day nerves is totally normal, but for a lot of nervous brides and/or grooms-to-be the ceremony is one of the biggest sources of concern. Alternative wedding celebrantJeannene Powellis here to offer you a few insights and tips to help you transform those wobbles and nerves into excitement butterflies instead.
Even if you’re the kind of person who gravitates towards the limelight, you can still experience anxiety heading towards your wedding day. What will the day be like? How will people behave? Will it be strange having everyone starting at me all day? What if I fall flat on my face when I’m going down the aisle? And if you’re a normally shy or introverted person, these concerns are only going to be magnified.
If you’re feeling shy and self-conscious
If you don’t like being the centre of attention or you’re nervous about everyone looking at you, practice the things that you can in advance – from your entrance, to some of the words you’ll say. Doing this will help you do these things more comfortably on the real occasion and enable you to better focus your attention on your partner, instead of the fact that you feel shy.
If you’re worried about crying
Weddings are emotional occasions and tears are totally normal! However, it’s quite a common pre-wedding concern. Just accept the fact that it may happen, wear waterproof mascara, have some tissues handy, and just go with it if it does. Shedding tears happens so often during wedding ceremonies, it’s not something to be afraid of!