Andy’s Essential Guide to Planning your Wedding

by | Jan 12, 2018 | Weddings

“Make it a joy rather than an anxiety”
What follows is some information about some of the many and varied things you might like to think about for your wedding. Planning a wedding can be daunting. I would highly recommend you savour every moment of the planning. Make it a joy rather than an anxiety. Speak to as many suppliers and professionals as you can and before you know it you will really start to get a picture of what you want your wedding day to look like and how it will run!

Important note: I have included links to various suppliers. These are people that I have worked with and would be happy to recommend. That said, there are many many other excellent suppliers, so take your time and do your homework to find the people that are a great fit with you and your fiancé.

Finally, at the end of the guide is a checklist that you can use to keep track of your planning…

 So, have a read through, enjoy the process and good luck!

Venue

Picking a wedding venue should be one of the first decisions to be made! These can range from Stately Homes to Tipis, Hotels to Halls, so there is enough diversity that you can pick somewhere that can really reflect your personalities and style. Once you have the ‘when and where’ booked, you can get started with the fun of organising everything else!

 

Here are some of the great venues I regularly exhibit at. (Click on the name to visit the venue’s website).

Open Days and Wedding Fairs are great ways of viewing potential venues. Often the venue will have the room set up as it would be for a wedding breakfast and you can see how it can be turned around for the evening reception too. These are also a great way to meet potential suppliers!

A great company that organises these fairs in the North East is Darlington Weddings. Check out their site for more info – (http://darlingtonweddings.co.uk).

PS – Wedding Fairs can be slightly daunting, so be sure to have look through my ‘Handy Guide to Surviving A Wedding Fair’ blog post to help further any questions! Check out the available dates on the right sidebar of this blog or click the tab below to see Andy’s next wedding fair dates.

Click to open

july, 2018

01jul12:0015:00Hardwick Hall12:00 - 15:00 Hardwick Hall, Sedgefield, Durham, TS21 2EH

22jul13:0016:00Rockliffe Hall13:00 - 16:00 Rockliffe Hall, Hurworth on Tees Darlington County Durham DL2 2DU

Photographer/Videographer
Your Photographer/Videographer can be one of the most important decisions you make about your wedding. Your photographer’s eyes will be the eyes you see your wedding photographs through for the rest of your lives so take time to go with a photographer whose vision and style you like and make sure you communicate with them the important things to yourself and your partner and the things you want to remember. Photographers can be a big expense but can be completely worth it.

“Make sure you do your research and see examples of their work and meet your photographer beforehand.”

Here are just some of the amazing photographers I get to work with but there are a lot more. Take your time and talk to them, they are the experts!

Nigel Hepplewhite

Inspire An Image Wedding Photography

0773 604 2640

Gary Walsh

Gary Walsh Photography

01642 355 205

Chiyo McMillan

Chiyo McMillan Photography

0781 449 6763

Click HERE to see more of Andy’s recommended photographers!

Entertainment

The wonderful thing about the entertainment at your wedding is that there are such a wide array of options to choose from. There is always something to tickle your fancy and suit your particular needs. And remember, your guests don’t just need entertaining in the evening…

Below a few ideas for you to keep in mind…

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Magician

Having a Magician at your wedding offers so much more than just magic tricks. It’s an ice breaker. It’s the conversation starter. Simply put, it brings people together. I may be slightly biased (!) but a magician is possibly one of the best things you can book for your wedding!

My recommendation:
Me! Andy Larmouthwww.andylarmouth.com

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Music

Music can be a great addition throughout the entirety of the day. Not only is it lovely to have some background music during your drinks reception or meal, string quartet, sax guy. Also, a live band or a DJ can be an amazing way to get the party of your evening reception really bouncing!

My recommendations:

Samantha Durnan Musicwww.samanthadurnanmusic.com

Mellow Momentswww.mellowmoments.me.uk

Last Anthemwww.lastanthem.co.uk

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Caricaturist

A Caricaturist is something a little different that not only gives you a lot of laughs on the day, but also gives your guest a great memento to keep for future!

My reccomendation:
Paul Slatterywww.paulslattery.co.uk

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Photo Booths

Photo Booths are becoming ever more popular nowadays, and a great addition giving somewhere for your guests to let loose and have some fun and you have your photos to keep as a funny keepsake!

My reccomendations:
Boothaliciouswww.boothalicious.co.uk
Occasional Events NEwww.occasionaleventsne.co.uk

Catering
If you choose a more traditional venue, like a hotel or stately home etc, then the wedding breakfast would usually be supplied by the venue. This would generally be more of a traditional sit-down meal but when it comes to the evening reception you have much more free reign to show off your personalities, with the wide array of mobile caterers and food trucks available now. These range from Fish&Chips to BBQ, pizzas to street food even ice cream vans to cocktail or prosecco trucks.
It can also be a great way to end the evening with bacon butties and coffee or water to counteract all the delicious pimms and prosecco consumed throughout your day!
Wedding Cakes

Now, your wedding cake not only needs to be delicious but it needs to look spectacular too! The wonderful thing about your cake suppliers is not only can you see their portfolios and some examples of their work at wedding fairs, but most will be happy to arrange a consultation with you to taste and discuss exactly what you have in mind for your cake!

My reccomendations:
Burnett 4 Cakeswww.burnett4cakes.co.uk

Decoration
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Cards and Stationary

An amazing way to set the mood for the event before it is here can be your save the date cards and invites, if you are going for a formal and traditional wedding then formal invites are great however if your day is going to be more casual and relaxed this can be reflected in your stationary and can be a great way to set the expectations of your guests as well linking in with your colour theme on the day.

Having the same decorations and colours throughout all your wedding stationary including table plans and name cards, is a lovely way to keep things uniform and really show off your and your partners personal styles.

My reccomendation:
Coochicoo Cardswww.coochicardcards.co.uk

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Florists

Florists can be a hugely integral to the look of your wedding. A wonderful way to see florist’s styles is to check out their social media or websites and seeing them exhibit at wedding fairs, here you can chat with them as well and they can advise you of the best flowers to go with your colour themes that will be in season and how to stick within your budget.

They can help you with top table decorations, bouquets or posies and button holes as well as table centrepieces.

My reccomendation:
The Enchanted Floristwww.theenchantedfloristdurham.co.uk

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Table Decor

If flowers are not something you like as your centrepieces there are many other options available. Also, chair covers are a wonderful way of continuing your colour theme throughout the reception room as well as putting your own individual stamp on the venue.

My reccomendation:
The First Class Wedding Company – www.thefirstclassweddingco.com
XLB Events – www.xlbevents.co.uk

Traditionally favours were sugared almonds given to wedding guests as a thank you for attending. However, more recently, favours have taken on a whole new lease of life. Ranging from personalised biscuits to miniature bottles of spirits to homemade jams and chutneys or bulbs or seeds for guests to take home and grown themselves, as well as little colouring packs and treats for any little guests you may have attending.

Whatever you choose can be another little way of showing off a little bit of your personalities and making your day just that little bit more special and memorable for your guests!

Dresses and Suits
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Wedding Dresses

The Dress is the most important thing to many brides and will be at the top of their lists and they will know exactly the dress they want before they have even seen it. Others will be looking at dresses without any idea what they want. Finding a boutique that understands both points of view and can cater to any bride is so important.

If you like to keep things all together, it’s even better to find somewhere that not only has bridal gowns but bridesmaid’s dresses and groomsmen’s suit hire.

My reccomendation:
Vicotria Robson Bridal – www.victoriarobsonbridal.com

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Suits

If you’re looking for something a little more bespoke for your groom or groomsmen check out Bakers Tailoring who also offer formal hire including evening wear.

My reccomendation:
Bakers Tailoring – www.bakerstailoring.com

Wedding rings are such a personal decision that have so much to do with your own personal styles and tastes and can have such sentimental value it would not be prudent to offer my personal recommendation here.

So, there we go. I hope you have found this information useful! Below is a checklist of some of the things you might want to consider for your big day. Just scroll down a bit and click the link below to download the Checklist in PDF form.

Best of luck with the planning, and if I can be of any assistance, please get in touch!

All the best,

Andy

Download Andy's FREE Wedding Checklist Guide

 Click on the red button below to open the free PDF Checklist in a new tab OR right click and ‘Save link as…‘ to save it to your computer!

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