Here is a selection of Q&As from Your East Anglian Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to firstname.lastname@example.org
Q. We've just started planning our wedding and the range of options for everything from the ceremony to the finishing touches is pretty overwhelming. We've no idea what the current trends are, where do we start?
A. Sarah Baker says: Sarah says: For couples saying 'I do' it certainly seems to be a case of 'I' for 'individuality' these days. There's a greater lean towards original and contemporary celebrations, creating an ambience or a mood, as opposed to being led by popular ideas, colours and themes. Couples are increasingly embracing the flexibility to create their special day from a blank canvas, hand-selecting the suppliers who are best-placed to bring their vision to life.
The world of weddings has seen many changes over the last 15 years, from the introduction of civil partnerships in 2005 to the legalisation of same-sex marriage in 2014, and most recently the ability for opposite-sex couples to enter into a civil partnership. It's an ever-changing and diversifying environment, which enables couples to express their personalities and preferences in every detail of their day. Trends for the year ahead, include:
- Couples choosing their rings together – both the engagement ring and wedding bands, sometimes even creating them from scratch. It's much more common now for both parties to be involved.
- Increased concern over sustainability and ethical considerations to reduce the environmental impact of the big day, such as choosing wedding stationery made from recycled card or using caterers who endorse locally sourced produce. Charitable donations are also now a popular choice, as an alternative to the traditional department-store wedding gift list.
- For the ceremony itself, more and more couples are opting to use a celebrant to create a bespoke script written just for them. It's not just about the vows either, the whole ceremony should reflect their personalities and personal love story. It's such an important part of the day and couples want it to be memorable for all the right reasons.
Q. We're having a spring wedding and are hoping to tie the knot outdoors. We want the service to reflect the season, our lives and loves but don't know where to start.
A. Dawn Rees says: I'm used to couples using the seasons to complement their big-day theme; everything from pumpkin-filled Halloween weddings to summer festival-themed celebrations. The joy of having a humanist celebrant of course, is that we can accommodate all the little details to reflect who you are as a couple. For example, this spring, I'm officiating at a wedding for a couple who want to involve their children in the ceremony. The four little ones will be walking in with their mum, each holding a small posy of apple blossom, narcissus and greenery, which they will present to her as she arrives alongside their dad. Another couple are having a small, intimate ceremony in their garden – just 20 people encircled by a bluebell heart they planted last year.
These ideas illustrate how flexible and inventive a non-religious humanist ceremony can be, incorporating your ideas and your personalities into a one-of-a-kind event. A good celebrant will take the time to get to know you and to write a ceremony that is tailored to you as a couple.
Q. My fiancé and I met in October and our first date was a romantic walk in the woods. It's our favourite time of year and we want to celebrate the season throughout our big day including the ceremony. Any ideas?
A. Rebecca Waldron says: Autumn brings a change of energy when it comes to wedding ceremonies. The fun, laughter and love are the same all year round but the service can be tailored to reflect the season.
For the ceremony you could ask everyone to wear autumnal colours, dress the area with lots of flickering candles and throw autumn leaves instead of confetti. You can also include seasonal readings or quotes relating to autumn, such as:
“In the autumn light her hair shone like a crown. They collected the world in small handfuls. When the sky grew dark, they parted with leaves in their hair.” – The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
And if you're looking to include a nod to Halloween, why not have a Victorian steampunk theme and celebrate in style? Your wedding can be whatever you want it to be and if you book a celebrant, they can help you have a ceremony that reflects you and your partner's individuality.