We recently had the pleasure of chatting with much-loved Brisbane marriage celebrant Natasha Hill of Hills Celebrant Services about all things weddings. Read on to discover Natasha’s top tips for finding the perfect celebrant and crafting a beautiful ceremony for your wedding day.
Professional, bubbly, and down-to-earth are just a few of the words we’d use to describe Natasha Hill — an experienced and highly sought-after marriage celebrant based in Brisbane. Natasha has been a celebrant for 12+ years and will make you feel at ease on your big day with her expertise, attention to detail, friendliness, and warm personality.Meet Natasha Hill
Easy Weddings: Hi Natasha! Tell us a little bit about yourself and why you became a celebrant.
After working as a Legal PA for 19 years (even studied law myself for 2.5 years), I wanted to step away from the corporate world and try my hand at something a little more creative and better suited to my extroverted, fun, and outgoing personality.
I commenced part-time in a wedding function centre in Sydney, working with the onsite wedding coordinators to ensure the smooth running of wedding receptions. We catered for a lot of the big Greek and Italian weddings. I loved this job so much! I worked 10-hour shifts for three Saturdays a month for three years. I used to watch the celebrants come into the courtyard and marry some of the couples, and I had a feeling that this was what I was destined to do.
I had to wait for the Attorney General’s Department to relax their rules on Celebrant Appointments, as there used to be a restriction on the number of celebrants that could be registered in a specific area (location/suburb), but when this was changed, I enrolled in a three-month online theory, and practical course then waited another six months before my appointment came through. You can imagine my excitement when it did!
Studying to become a Marriage Celebrant (I feel) was one of the BEST decisions of my life, and I haven’t looked back! I continued working full-time in a law firm, performing weddings on the weekend part-time. By my third year as a celebrant, I was doing 50+ weddings, which meant I was working pretty much seven days a week. This was a lot to take on at the time, as my husband and I were trying to start a family. Sadly this did not come to fruition, so we decided to take a much-needed break from life, selling the house and quitting our full-time jobs to travel for 12 months around our beautiful country in a caravan. Again, another highlight of my life!
Fast forward almost 13 years, an interstate move and 700+ ceremonies later, Brisbane is now my home. Outside of work, I love all things craft, cruising around on my electric scooter, eating Italian food, and dress shopping.
How would you describe your celebrancy style?
I love to create ceremonies full of warmth, romance, joy and laughter. I am a hopeless romantic! I want couples and their guests to walk away after a ceremony with me, saying it was one of the best ceremonies they have ever been to, and I get that a lot, which is wonderful. I am truly grateful and humble for every experience.
I also offer my services as an MC and love every aspect of this role, as I get to continue the celebration with my couple, whom I have gotten to know well. It can make all the difference to a couple’s evening by hiring a professional speaker who is super organised, great with time management, and knows how to speak to a crowd.
My ceremonies are also very family-friendly. I love to include parents by way of a dedication — thanking them for everything they have done for the couple, as well as if they have children, by including parent vows — personal promises to them, especially if they are a blended family and often suggest popular weddings trends to include as well.
I am a true believer in the following:
“My SMILE is my LOGO, my PERSONALITY is my BUSINESS CARD, and how I leave others feeling after an experience with me is my TRADEMARK.” – Joy Danzie.Read Natasha's Glowing Reviews
What should couples consider when searching for their celebrant?
Someone who will listen to and respect their wishes while being open and honest.
Getting married is one of the most important days of their life, so it makes sense to choose a celebrant that they feel a personal connection with and most comfortable with, to help them make one of life’s most important promises (this is actually my tagline!)
A celebrant should be able to understand their feelings and ideas of love and be able to communicate this well on their day. This can make all the difference.
I suggest that couples have a good look through celebrant websites. What packages do they offer, and what do they include? Are they easily contactable, and are they quick to reply? Are they thorough? Do they present well and suit their wedding style? A good way to see this is on socials, like Instagram.
I say it is also a great idea to take the time to read through half a dozen testimonials/reviews to see what other couples have said and how they have rated their experience.
I believe the most important credentials of an Authorised Marriage Celebrant are:
- Good reputation
- Reliable and trustworthy
- Accessible and approachable
- Well-respected and highly regarded
With such a large number of celebrants now registered to perform legal ceremonies, couples are spoilt for choice, although this can be quite overwhelming.
I feel that some couples spend too much time trying to find the “cheapest” option. Fees can vary depending on the level of experience, inclusions and location etc. While I appreciate weddings are expensive and couples may have set themselves a specific budget for certain suppliers, I feel a celebrant is not something they should try to bargain with. We are industry professionals and the most important part of a couple’s wedding day. At the end of the day, there is no “wedding” without a celebrant.
What do you think are the key ingredients for a memorable ceremony?
Lots of calm, smiling and laughter will always be key elements of a memorable ceremony. Being welcoming and accommodating, mindful and respectful of family dynamics (and religion, if any) are also important. Knowing who is who on the day, being aware of our surroundings, working with photographers, being mindful of their locations, ensuring the best photos for couples, stepping aside for the first kiss etc, are all important things to consider, too.
How do you find inspiration for your ceremonies?
I find inspiration for my ceremonies from various resources provided by my Celebrant Association, as well as reading books and watching wedding rom-coms!
I also ask all my couples to complete an online questionnaire, and their answers help me to create a personally written and customised ceremony. Essentially, the story is written first based on their answers in a creative and romantic way. I am a “lover of love”, and this gives me inspiration on how best to write and put together the rest of their ceremony based on their story so it is a complete and true representation of them as a couple.
What does a wedding day look like for you?
This Instagram reel shows what a day in my life as a celebrant looks like!
View this post on Instagram
Do you have any advice on dealing with wedding day nerves?
My advice is to try to delegate tasks as much as possible, so you can relax and enjoy every precious small moment. We all know the day goes so quickly, so I feel this is very important.
I also like to remind my couples to think about what brought them together — “all those unique qualities that drew them to one another in the beginning. Those first halting phrases, the thrill of discovery, that wonderful feeling of oneness when their eyes met.” I feel this is a good way to help calm the nerves, and of course, a little Champagne never hurt anyone! 🍾🥂