Honeymoon destination used to be a luxury that only the rich could afford, but gradually the custom grew for most couples to take a few days off work, and now a fortnight’s honeymoon is fairly standard for most couples. When you are planning your own honeymoon, there are various questions to be taken into consideration. (more…)
Wedding guests Once you have decided on the venue, there are numerous other details to be checked regarding your reception. Remember that you and your guests will almost certainly be at the reception far longer than you are at the service, so it is important to get everything as right as possible!
The seating is an important consideration. Are you going to have a sit-down meal? if so, is there somewhere where the guests can relax more informally and mingle more freely, both before and after the meal? Are the chairs comfortable? Are there high-chairs and cushions available for small children? (more…)
Wedding reception The way you deal with the arrival of guests at the reception will depend on the size and formality of the reception and the arrangement of the place where you are holding the reception.
If there are lots of guests who came along to the service but who have not been invited to the reception, it is a nice idea to have a small (more…)
Wedding videos photos Of course you will have your photographs, and possibly a video film, of all stages of the wedding and reception, both formal and informal, to help you capture the flavour of every moment of your wedding day. However, there are also plenty of other ways of helping you remember the things that made the day special – the details of the preparations, the goodwill messages of your guests, scraps of fabric from the bride’s and bridesmaids’ gowns, and flowers from your bouquets. (more…)
The speeches and toasts can be either the highlight or the low point of a wedding reception, depending on the participants! The purposes of the speeches are twofold; first to congratulate the couple and wish them well in their future life together, and secondly to say thank you to appropriate people. Many people quake when they know that they are going to have to make a speech at a wedding, but if you familiarise yourself with what you want to say and stick to a few basic guidelines you should be fine. If you are really stumped, there are agencies that will write a speech for you or provide you with a selection of jokes, anecdotes or quotations.
The bride’s father In this country, the first person to make a speech is usually the bride’s father, if he is alive. If he is not, this speech could be made by whoever has given her away, or by an old family friend or favourite uncle or godfather. Generally this speech will say how happy the father is to see his daughter marrying the man of her choice, and how he is sure that all the guests want to join him in wishing the couple well. He may include one or two funny references to events leading up to the wedding, or from her childhood, but this should not be an excuse for causing the bride to squirm with embarrassment over tales of her first boyfriends or her early questions on where babies come from! The bride’s father will then propose a toast to the couple; this could take the form of ‘the bride and groom!’, or ‘Andrew and Sheila’ (or whatever the couple’s names are), or ‘to the happy couple!’ All the guests should raise their glasses, repeat the toast, and drink to the couple.
The groom The groom is the next person to speak, and he will do so on behalf of the couple – the assumption being that the bride is too full of maidenly coyness to say anything herself! The groom’s speech is usually the one that gives least scope for wit, as his task is mainly to thank people who have been involved in setting up the marriage and reception. He should thank the bride’s parents (or whoever else has hosted the reception) for their generosity, and also for providing him with his bride; he should also thank anyone else whose contribution has been outstanding, for instance those who have cooked the food, made the bride’s dress, found the new couple a home, etc – or even introduced them in the first place. He then usually makes mention of the support of the attendants, and proposes a toast to the bridesmaids. If there are lots of bridesmaids the toast can simply be ‘the bridesmaids’; if there are only one or two he can toast them by name. Again the guests raise their glasses, repeat the toast and drink.
The best man Traditionally the best man’s speech is the highlight of the reception; somehow it always seems much more permissible to embarrass the groom than it does to embarrass the bride! The best man is officially replying to the toast on behalf of the bridesmaids, but in fact he has the chance to pull the whole proceedings together with style. Anecdotes from the couple’s courting days always go down well, provided that they are not too cruel, and if the best man has known the groom for many years there are often chances to let the guests in on various well-kept secrets. When the best man has finished his speech he should read out any telegrams and important cards (having vetted them first for unsavory remarks…). If any guest of importance has been unable to attend the wedding, for instance a brother abroad or a parent in hospital, he may propose a toast to absent friends. At the end of the speeches, or a little while afterwards, the bride and groom cut the cake, and this concludes the official part of the reception.
Tips for making speeches Do: make notes in case your mind goes blank keep it brief – five minutes should be a maximum try to include a joke or two to lighten the tension plan what you want to say well in advance rehearse your speech in the preceding week, to check that you have grasped the salient points Don’t: make embarrassing references to anyone tell blue jokes fidget, scratch or put you hand over your mouth mutter and look down at your feet sound as though you can’t wait to finish!
Spending can be one of the biggest sources of contention within a marriage, and this can be especially true when things are very tight after an expensive wedding and honeymoon, often combined with the cost of setting up a new home as well. It’s important to sort out your priorities and expenditures early on, especially if you have used up all your savings on the wedding and house, to make sure that you don’t get into deep water and place an unnecessary strain on your marriage.
Bank accounts You will need to decide whether you are going to have two bank accounts or a joint one. A joint bank account may make it easier for you to keep track of your money as you will only have to check one set of bank statements; on the other hand separate accounts may be easier for some lifestyles, with each of you taking responsibility for different financial obligations such as the mortgage, housekeeping, bills, entertainments, etc.
Building societies Once again you may have to decide whether to combine an account or maintain two separate ones; you may choose to keep a building society account as your main means of saving, for instance for special items such as holidays or for a deposit on a house or a car.
Insurance You may already be covered for personal insurance under your mortgage arrangement, but if not it could be a good time to arrange for life insurance in one another’s favour; if you are depending on two incomes and one of these is suddenly curtailed the other partner could be left in great financial difficulties.
Pensions You may be involved in a pension scheme at work, but if not, or if it is only minimal, your marriage could be the ideal opportunity to take out an easy saving plan spread over the maximum number of years. You may also want to start saving towards the cost of having children, schooling, etc. It is well worthwhile making out a simple budget for your first year, and then revising it each year as your circumstances change, so that you have rough guidelines to keep to and will be able to assess what you can and can’t afford realistically. Use this page to plan your rough incomings and outgoings, and see if they tally – if not, some adjustments will have to be made!Incomings S per year Husband’s income Wife’s income Interest, etc Any other incomings
Total Outgoings S per year Mortgage or rent Insurance Community charge Gas Electricity Phone Housekeeping HP payments or bank loan repayments Things for the house Holidays Clothes Presents Entertainment Travelling expenses Car payments, insurance, tax Car maintenance House maintenance Sport Extras, eg. haircuts, dental fees, prescription charges, club memberships, magasines and books, records and tapes
Groom’s clothes and best wedding outfit Shown here are some options for the groom’s outfit; the men of the wedding party should wear clothes of the same style and degree of formality or informality. 1 Lounge suit with waistcoat. 2 Morning suit with wing collar, stock and top hat. 3 Morning suit with ordinary collar and tie. 4 Morning suit with darker jacket and gloves. 5 Formal suit with dark jacket and striped waistcoat and trousers. Groom’s clothes – Choosing an outfit 6 For a formal afternoon wedding followed by an evening reception, a dinner jacket with cummerbund, tartan trews, dress shirt and bow tie. 7 White tie and tails – a short tail-jacket, stiff shirt, white bow tie and black top hat. 8 Outfit for the traditional wedding of a Scot. 9 Double-breasted suit. 10 Morning suit with dark jacket, pale waistcoat, top hat and striped trousers.
Find the best mothers clothes for the wedding day The wedding of a daughter or a son is a very big day for their mother and she will want to look her very best. Many women buy or make a special outfit for their son’s or daughter’s wedding; they know that they will be in the public eye all day, so it is important to have an outfit that is comfortable, practical and smart. Many women opt for the classic combination of a smart suit and hat, but there are no hard and fast rules; a beautiful dress with no hat is perfectly acceptable, as is a skirt and attractive blouse.
It is worthwhile for the mothers of the bride and groom to consult with the couple closely on colour schemes; the whole wedding party will be standing together and being photographed together for much of the day, so it is all to the good if everyone’s outfit tones into an overall scheme. These styles are just some of the outfits that would be eminently suitable for a daughter’s or son’s wedding.
Wedding drinks Once you have decided what you are going to eat at your reception, you will need to decide what you are going to have to drink. Choose the drinks to fit in to the general style and formality of the occasion, just as the food should. (more…)
Wedding accessories It’s no good choosing your dress carefully unless you pay just as much attention to what goes with it! Your accessories should complement the mood and style of your dress and of the wedding in general – for instance it would be inappropriate to wear flat white sandals with a very formal dress with a train. Keep your dress in mind when choosing all your accessories – ideally try them on with it – and you can be sure that the complete effect will be harmonious. (more…)
Wedding day presents As bride and groom you will want to show your appreciation to the people who have been involved in your wedding party, and the best way is by giving them a present to remind them of the special day. Try to make these presents lasting and, if possible, personal; they will like to have something that they can look at in later years, and something that has obviously been selected with care and thought. (more…)