Based on our experience and some of the most credible wedding guides out there, we have compiled a list of 10 tips that will help you create a beautiful and memorable wedding for you and your guests.
Beautiful décor that is tailored to your venue will add a unique and personal touch to your wedding day. Consider romantic lighting, especially in areas where you are planning to stage photographs. What about festive bunting, fairy lights, lanterns or even chandeliers for a more dramatic effect?When it comes to flowers, bigger isn’t necessarily better and your choice of flowers reflects your personal taste. Choose arrangements and colours that will liven up and suit your venue and remember to check if the flowers you choose will be available at the time of your wedding. Consider existing trees, shrubs, flowers in and around the venue as well as the size of venue when deciding on the quantity to make an impact. A bit too much is often better than too few to notice.
Make sure your officiant understands you and your partner and that they tailor their blessing to your preferences as a couple. It is important that your officiant is articulate, entertaining and comfortable speaking in front of a crowd.Keep the ceremony brief and to the point. Also, try to minimise the amount of time your guests must wait between the ceremony and reception. If there will be a large time gap, set up entertainment for your guests in the form of games on the lawn, live music and snacks so they don’t end up just drinking champagne in that time and remember your wedding for the wrong reasons!
- Table layout and seating
Beautifully designed table layouts are always a treat but make sure your guests have enough space to place their personal belonging such as clutch bags amongst the table décor and various plates and glasses.Designing the perfect seating chart is probably one of the biggest challenges of your wedding day. Seat close friends together, seat family at their own table and try to pair the rest of the people according to their interests, age or related careers. Think about the older guests or people with children when planning your seating chart – will they need to be close to the exit or the toilet?
- Speeches and traditions
When it comes to speeches, the K.I.S.S. principle is a useful guide: Keep it simple, stupid! Put a time limit on each speech and even go as far as briefing each speaker on what they need to cover. It is your MC’s responsibility to keep a beady eye on timing so the programme flows seamlessly.It is entirely up to you to decide on how many traditions you want to follow or if you don’t want to follow any. It certainly will not determine how much fun your guests have. Do whatever makes you happy!
This can be a very important part of a wedding. Make sure there is always enough to eat aside from the main meal. Serving snacks in the time period between the ceremony and reception will keep guests occupied and tie them over until the main meal arrive.Also consider late night snacks for the party animals who may feel peckish after hours of rug cutting. Simple late night snacks such as mini burgers, toasted cheese and fries will be very popular with revellers.
While an open bar is an ideal scenario, not everyone can afford such an expense. If you need to limit your bar bill, consider offering unlimited beer and wine but having a cash bar for any other alcohol. Check if your venue is willing to charge corkage so you may source your own wine at a better price than buying wine off the venue’s wine list.
This is another decisive part of a successful wedding. From the music you choose at your ceremony to the DJ or live band you select, the music at your wedding will set the mood and dictate how popular the dancefloor is. A professional and experienced DJ will be able to read the crowd and play music that will keep them on the dance floor. If your DJ is open to it, getting some song requests is another way to make sure the DJ is playing music your guests (and you!) want to hear.Additional mood music options include having a violinist or saxophonist at the reception as people arrive and while they find their seats.
While you will be making all these special memories, you need a seasoned wedding photographer – preferably a team of two – to capture all the special and fun moments. Two photographers will be able to capture more moments during the ceremony and reception than one photographer will be able to.Try not to over-schedule your photographers. The day’s schedule as well as a list of the people they need to photograph will assist your photographer but be sure to allow them enough time to capture the unique and unplanned photographs that will make your wedding album special and remarkable.
- Make sure your guests feel welcome and comfortable
Consider constructing a lounge area where people can hang out between dancing, eating and sitting at the tables. An area with couches in a quieter part of the venue, a few bar chairs and tables outside for the smokers or a few benches with blankets outside around a fire pit will add a cosy touch to your wedding.Make sure that you greet every guest in person, be it during the reception or on the dance floor.
- Make your exit memorable – or be the last one to leave!
Some couples enjoy making a memorable exit with fireworks, sparklers or confetti while others want to be the last ones to leave their wedding. Do whatever you prefer. Remember, the more you enjoy your wedding, the more your guests will enjoy it too!
About JoeDaniela Photography:
JoeDaniela Photography offers an elite wedding photography service that promises to raise the bar of wedding photography in South Africa. Joe and Daniela have become known as one of the most trusted teams in professional wedding photography and with 20 years of experience, this dynamic duo effortlessly complement each other. www.joedaniela.com