Creator of the very first winning wedding of Living TV’s 'Four Weddings'

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Wedding Planning vs booking suppliers

Let’s clear up the definition of wedding planning

Having been in the wedding business for over 13 years, I hear the words wedding planning being bantered around excessively. On every corner there appears to be a wedding planner. Popular phrases are:

  • Wedding planning made easy
  • Wedding planning tips
  • Wedding planning ideas

And let’s not forget the many wedding suppliers who also claim that they offer wedding planning services. But the biggest phrase that makes me feel the most uncomfortable is something like this: “Find out how Jenny [insert another relevant name] planned her wedding for just £1,000 [insert another similar low figure]

wedding planning

Let’s examine the meaning of the word ‘Planning’. The dictionary definition is: the act or process of making or carrying out plans

Now let’s examine the meaning of the work ‘Booking’. The dictionary definition is:  the arrangement that you make when you book something

If we look closely at both these definitions, planning does not have a monetary value. Planning is more about emotions, skills, knowledge, energy and time. While booking, especially when  relating it to whether you are trying to keep costs low, has everything to do with how much you are spending.

Please don’t misunderstand. When I work with my brides to plan their wedding I always start with their budget and what they are comfortable to spend, but it doesn’t end there. As I work with them to identify the suppliers to book, I am also exploring the ease of how all the pieces will fit together, asking the most important logistical questions and identifying the best solutions that will cause the least anxiety possible.

You see the wedding planning process for me is an extremely serious one. It’s not just a game of numbers. There is no end of cheap options available for weddings and you really don’t have to look very hard to find them. But what is not so easy to find is advice on how your day will come together.  Or how all those items that you managed to book (at low prices or otherwise), translate into your dream. Plus, who will stick the pieces together that don’t quite fit so that you and your family will glide through the day that you have been dreaming about for so long?

PAB Events wedding planning

That’s what wedding planning is all about. No amount of frantically trying to source suppliers in record time is going to make your day the awesomeness that it should be.

So the next time that you hear the words ‘plan your wedding for just [insert relevant low figure]’, be sure to recognise if you are just being informed about the cheapest suppliers and a range of DIY options.

I would love to hear your comments about your wedding planning journey. Please leave them below.

As well as wedding decor hire, PAB Events provides a range of Wedding Planning services. To find out more just click here

2017 Wedding Trends

If you are planning a wedding you are probably doing copious amount of research to check out the latest trends. Here’s what we have noticed as being very popular this year!

Vintage style is showing no signs of going away

PAB Events 2017 wedding trends      PAB Events 2017 Wedding trends

Soft colours like ivory & dusky pink is hugely popular

PAB Events 2017 wedding trends

The must have accessory is the cream aisle runner

PAB Events 2017 wedding trends

Here’s a link to some other great trends we have found More 2017 wedding trends

Please leave a comment below and tell us about your wedding ideas

2016 Bride? Just Breathe

If 2016 is your wedding year, you will be starting to understand the importance of gathering together everything you have booked to create a meaningful and amazing wedding day. 

  to-do-list

Planning vs booking

It is about this time that the excitement of having booked all your suppliers becomes a distant memory and all you can think about is whether everyone will do what they are supposed to do on the day. That’s the difference between planning and booking. If you have been doing lots of booking up until now, you might be feeling a little overwhelmed; especially when people keep mentioning things you never thought of!

My advice? Breathe. If you haven’t booked someone to manage your day like the PAB Events Wedding Day Coordination Service, it’s time to roll your sleeves up follow my top tips to creating the day of your dreams.

Contact all your suppliers

Chances are that you booked your wedding suppliers some time ago, so it’s important to connect and discuss everything you have booked to ensure nothing has been missed

Pay all your outstanding invoices

Most wedding suppliers want to be paid at least a month before the wedding date so make sure you have this covered. If there are any slight changes closer to your day, be sure to tell your supplier about it and pay any additional amounts

Tell your venue about everything you have booked

The last thing you want is for that amazing candy cart, or giant love letters you booked to be turned away on the day because the venue didn’t plan a space for it. Chances are that everything you would like can be accommodated, but you will need to communicate the details in plenty of time.

Give clear instructions

Never assume anything. If there is a particular way you would like something done, displayed or handled, put it in writing and have it agreed. The earlier you do this the better. This will ensure you can make alternative arrangements it your wishes can’t be granted.

Don’t try to do everything yourself

The temptation is always there to be involved in every aspect of your day, especially if you have the opportunity to set things up the day before your wedding. Just because you have space the day before your wedding, it doesn’t mean you have to fill it with activities and stress. If you plan in advance you can hand over the responsibility to family and friends or an expert. Then all you need to do during the run up to your day is to relax and prepare YOU.

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I would love to hear how you are feeling during the build up to your wedding. Just leave your comments below

 

Trying to reduce wedding venue costs?

‘Help! How can I reduce the cost of my venue?

PAB Events save money on your wedding venue  

Since starting my series of blogs relating to wedding costs, I have had some great feedback from brides to be who have been trying to keep control of mounting costs. My main aim is to help future brides create their dream day at an affordable price. So let me share with you one of the most common dilemmas brides have and my typical response.

Bride’s Dilemma:

I got engaged 3 months ago and my wedding will be in June 2017. I know June will be a popular month for venues but I have always dreamed of a summer wedding. Lots of people kept telling me that I had to start looking at venues now, as the best ones get booked up. The problem is that I am being told that I have to pay more for my venue than the current rate, as it is in 2 years time. The rates are quite high at the moment so I am worried that I won’t be able to afford it when I have to pay the balance. Help!

My response:

I understand your problem. It is a common one. But I must say that you are absolutely right to be venue hunting now. Here’s my advice:

  • Talk to the venue to see if you can lock into today’s prices by booking now. Even if they are unable to give you the current price, they may be able to offer you a discount if you book within the next few weeks.
  • Consider having your wedding day on a week day as opposed to a weekend. Most venues have reduced costs for weekday weddings. I know you may think this will be difficult for your guests but with such substantial notice, you’ll be surprised at how flexible guests can be. I am currently working on a number of weekday weddings where there has been little or no impact on the guest list
  • If you book now, there should be no reason why you can’t start paying towards your venue straight away. Paying small amounts between now and your wedding day, will cushion the blow when the final balance is due.

Feel free to share your comments below on my advice. I would love to know your thoughts!

Worried about wedding costs? Click the image below to get your free guide!

 

PAB Events free wedding costs guide

Help! My wedding plans don’t fit my wedding budget!

Help! My wedding plans don’t fit my wedding budget!

PAB Events which wedding supplier

Here’s the scenario: You start to plan your wedding and the first few quotes are coming in. You clearly under estimated how much that dream dress was going to cost and the gorgeous bouquet that you have your heart set on, is going to costs a small fortune. Visits to potential venues has left you thinking that you have to take out a mortgage (do they know you only want to hire it, not buy it?) and finding the cash to decorate the venue is not looking very hopeful either. So what does any budget conscious bride do? They see what services they can drop from their wedding list to make the figures fit. Makes sense, right?

Well in theory yes. But like everything, the process of doing this is not that simple. So here, I am going to share with you the best tactic to use when trying to figure out budget saving solutions

There are 2 things you need to base your decisions on; your heart and the good old fashioned process of weighing up the pros and cons. Then it simply comes down to whether you can deal with the consequences.

Only you are aware of your vision for your wedding day. It will include things that you have always had your heart set on and it will include other elements that are a mixture of common sense and industry standards.

Examples of heart felt requirements

  • Wedding dress
  • Atmosphere
  • Decorations
  • Entertainment

Examples of of common sense and industry standards

  • A venue or space to get married in
  • Someone to legally marry you
  • Some form of refreshments for your guests

Then you have the grey areas like

  • Photographer
  • Cake
  • Invitations
  • Wedding cars

In my experience, the heart felt requirements never get compromised no matter how much they cost. Common sense and industry standards are a must. So that just leaves the grey areas. Here are my pros:

Photographer – The only professional record you will have of your special day
Cake – A focal point during the receptions and sometimes doubles up as the desert
Invitations – These set the scene of your style and what to expect on your day
Wedding cars – Your chance to arrive on style

I would love to hear your thoughts on what services you would drop to save money and why. Just write your comments below.

Worried about wedding costs? Click on the image below to get your free guide!

PAB Events free wedding costs guide

 

 

Is your wedding supplier too expensive?

How do you decide if a wedding supplier is too expensive?

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 It is a constant battle to try and understand the minefield of costs that get thrown at you when you are planning a wedding. It is easy to enter the planning process with a preconceived idea that everything will be over priced so your sole purpose is to find cheap suppliers. But if you have never planned a wedding before, how can you tell the difference between cheap and expensive? Here are my top tips:

  • Be clear about what you want. If you have a found a supplier who isn’t meeting your needs, the price becomes irrelevant. Too many brides to be are quick to choose a low priced service without truly understanding what they are being offered.
  • Take some time to understand what is involved in providing you with a service. Many factors make up a price. If a service is labour intensive, require specialist materials or skill, this will be reflected in the price. The same goes for quality. If you take time to compare 2 services and then find out that the services are the same but prices are at different ends of the scale, by all means go for the cheaper option.
  • Go with your instinct. Have you ever seen something that looked amazing but the person selling it didn’t seem genuine? On paper everything looks great and the price looks really competitive, but something just doesn’t seem quite right. On the other hand, a slightly more expensive option is ticking all your emotional boxes. Then it’s time to go with your inner flow.

I would love to hear your thoughts on the debate of wedding pricing. Leave your comments below

Worried about wedding costs? Click on the image below to get your FREE guide!

 

PAB Events free wedding costs guide

Getting married? 10 things you must not forget

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Is your wedding budget realisitic?

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How to keep your wedding guests happy

5 added extras to keep your wedding guests happy

Wedding toast

Let’s face it. Odds are that your wedding guests will be very happy to be sharing your day with you. There is something about weddings that brings out the sunshine on everyone. But there are couple pf things to remember when you are planning your day – every minute of your time will be filled with activity. Every minute of your guest’s time will not.

While you are having your photos done, your guests will be waiting. Not everyone will know each other. Some of your guests may have traveled a fair distance to be with you on your day. Some of your elderly guests may need extra attention. These are just a few observations.

So here is my advice on some of the things you can do to keep your guests occupied.

Entertainment during the drinks reception

Providing you are having a drinks reception straight after your ceremony, it makes such a difference to break the ice  and fill the waiting hours with a little bit of entertainment. Popular choices are interactive magicians, caricaturist or a harpist. This provides a topic of discussion and reduces the perceived waiting times.

Teas, coffee & Canapes

If some of your guests have traveled a fair way to your wedding and you don’t plan to sit down to eat until after 3pm , it makes sense to consider having some light canapes during your drinks reception too. Don’t forget that your elderly guests may prefer tea or coffee as opposed to something cold while they wait around for their main meal.

Toiletries in the ladies & gents toilets

It’s a long day. Having the opportunity to freshen up with a few necessary items will make the world of difference; especially to the ladies. But of course the men will appreciate it too! This is very simple to do. Just get yourself a couple of small baskets and fill them with items like deodorant, wet wipes, hand lotions, safety pins (for any little accidents!), hair brush & comb, hair spray and anything else you think might be useful for your guests.

Flip flops

This is becoming increasingly more popular. Long days and long nights, mean sore feet. By the time the party is in full swing, many heels would have been abandoned for bare feet. Having a comfy pair of flip flops to push those feet into is so much more reassuring than wandering around bare feet and your guests will love you for it!

Trivia Questions at the table

This goes back to breaking the ice amongst guests who do not know each other. There is nothing like a bit of competativeness to get people talking and sharing ideas. You can even spice things up by including questions about you as a couple. Instruct your guests to play the game during the meal and then offer an extra bottle of wine (or 2!) for the winning table.

I would love to hear about some of the extra things that you are adding to keep your wedding guests happy. Just use the space below.

4 things to do as your wedding day approaches

Your big day is nearly here!

PAB Events 4 Top tips as you approach your wedding day

There is nothing like the realisation that you only have weeks rather than months before your big day. The first thing racing through your mind is whether you have done all you need to create one of the best days of your life or whether your beautiful wedding dreams are going to start crumbling around you. STOP. Here are my top 4 wedding tips to approaching your day with ease.

Breathe

This may seem obvious, but the vision of your wedding day hurtling towards you, can often send brides into a state of hyperventilation! Take your time and try to stay calm as you tie up your loose ends. Remember,panic will cause you to make mistakes and panic spend.

Finalise your guest numbers

There will always be changes in your guest numbers, even up to the day of your wedding. This is because we live in a real world. Things happen which can change even the best laid plans. Try not to get hung up on the fact that your numbers may change slightly a few days before your wedding. Instead, decide on a deadline and go with the numbers you have confirmed at that time. I suggest this deadline is 2 weeks before your wedding, as this is when most caterers will want to know the number of guests to cater for. You also need to give yourself time to create your table plan so it’s fine to set an earlier deadline.

Connect with your suppliers

Chances are you booked your suppliers some time ago. Ideally you should be checking in with them regularly to ensure all is ok. However, as you approach your big day you will need to spend time communicating with your suppliers to ensure (at the least) that all final payments are made, delivery times are agreed and they know how to access your venue.

Plan your hand over

It’s sad to say, but this task often gets forgotten. This is even more important if you have been the main person planning your day. You must give yourself the chance to be the bride. It is virtually impossible to manage your wedding day and enjoy it too. If you are not working with a professional, find someone you can trust. My advice is to start planning your hand over as early as possible to give that person time to understand your vision and what is important to you. They will be your eyes and ears on your wedding day.

Please feel free to share some of your concerns in the spaces below; but most of all, enjoy your day!