While a traditional wedding suits many, plenty of couples are looking for a way to weave a little bit more of their unique personalities into their big days.
Natalie Hill, of Poppies Weddings and Event Planning, says moderns brides and grooms are often looking for something “just that little bit different on their big day.”
“A lot of couples want to put their own stamp on their day but sometimes they really don’t how to do that,” says Natalie, whose specialty is thinking outside the box to help organise a truly individual and unique celebration of love.
Natalie started her wedding and event planning business earlier this year and says couples appreciate having someone else take care of the little details.
“It really takes the pressure off the couple. They still make all the fun decisions but they don’t have to chase up quotes from suppliers or worry that they’re forgetting something. We take care of every detail.”
Natalie, who was active in her local roller derby community in Canberra before injury forced her to take a break, said many couples were looking for something just a bit more alternative than the traditional wedding.
Here are 10 ways to add some more personality to your wedding:
For those who don’t want to hold their reception at a conventional reception centre, there are plenty of non-traditional event spaces that work well for weddings. Many sports venues, universities, museums and galleries have function spaces. “And of course, no matter where you live, there are plenty of cool bars to be found,” adds Natalie.Image: Pronovias
Choose an original wedding gown
The wedding dress is the centerpiece of the wedding, and these days anything goes. “Many brides are choosing to move away from the traditional floor-length white gown. We are seeing a lot of tea-length gowns, and we are also seeing a lot of coloured dresses. Basically, brides can get away with whatever they feel comfortable in,” Natalie says. “There are no rules.” Similarly, don’t wear heels if you’re going to be in pain all evening. “I’ve seen weddings where the bride and groom wore matching Converse trainers. It was great!”
Photos with personality
Similarly, there are plenty of interesting places to have your wedding photos taken, for example on public transport, in city laneways, in schools, and even in offices. “In my experience, a good photographer will often have their own suggestions about the best quirky local places for photos,” Natalie says. If you are happy to have your photos shared on social media, then be sure to create a fun hash-tag and display it around the wedding venue so pics of your special day can be easily found.
“You don’t have to have a traditional wedding band or DJ,” Natalie says. “We are seeing people hire their favourite local bands which can work really well – and it’s definitely something that’s different.”
”A lot of couples choose to serve a cocktail that has been created especially for their big day – and especially for them,” Natalie says. “They might give it a name that relates to the day in some way. It’s a fun way to personalize the drinks list in a small way.”
While many still choose to serve a traditional sit-down dinner, others have gravitated towards buffet-style events or food stations. Those having outdoor events may prefer to have food trucks. “There are so many different ways you can serve great food at your wedding and it doesn’t always have to be via a traditional three-course meal,” Natalie says.
“The environment is a cause close to a lot of people’s hearts,” Natalie said. “Many of our couples are trying to reduce their environmental impact as much as possible. With a few simple changes, it’s easy to have an environmentally friendly event.”
Natalie says that, from invitations printed with eco-friendly inks and biodegradable paper to living bomboniere to designers who make wedding gowns only from natural fabrics and organic wool, there are many options for being environmentally friendly on your big day.
The days of the sugared almonds being our only bomboniere choice are well behind us,” laughs Natalie. “We see a lot of thought put into the bomboniere. At the moment, potted succulents are very popular. I’ve also see wine with personalized labels, seeds for people to plant at home – we can come up with ideas that suit every couple and budget.”
Personalised vows have become the norm, with many couples working with their celebrant for weeks before the wedding to ensure they say everything they want to say. “Again, there are very few rules,” Natalie says. “Some couples like to have a laugh and others are more serious and romantic, people have a chance to reflect their personalities in this way.”
A honeymoon straight after the wedding often isn’t possible for many couples, due to work commitments, budget constraints or limited annual leave. It is not unusual for couples to defer the honeymoon for a few months, or not to take one at all. “The honeymoon used to be the first time a couple holidayed together but those days are long behind us. Often couples have already done a lot of travel together so the honeymoon might not be such a priority.”