Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category

How to survive a Wedding Fair

Saturday was my very first wedding fair… and I’ve just about recovered! My lovely friend Rachel (who I might persuade to do a guest post or two in future) came along with me, and despite neither of us being engaged yet we had a really good time – it’s amazing just how many things you know you want/don’t want even when you’re not in full on planning mode! Rachel even found a contender for THE dress…

As it was my first I can’t comment on wedding fairs in general, but this one was busy and hectic, with lots of lovely, friendly and enthusiastic people there. The catwalk show was hilarious when they burst into a choreographed ‘dance’ to the ‘Moves Like Jagger’ chorus, and the man in the kilt was quite gorgeous (Kilts seem to have that effect, he didn’t look quite as hot in a normal suit!)

But enough of the comedy entertainment… After I’d recovered with a nice cup of tea, I came up with my top three tips for surviving your first wedding fair.

1. Know what you like…

As a wedding blog reading fiend I already have a good idea of what I liked, and what I didn’t. It meant I could rule out some stalls at a glance. There is a lot to take in at a wedding fair, and even being selective we spent about 3 hours there and were ready to collapse when we got home.

2. …but keep an open mind

This might sound contradictory to the above, but keep an open mind to things you aren’t sure about. I have to admit to being a photo booth snob, everyone seems to have them at their weddings these days and I guess I sometimes judge things too quickly when they become on ‘trend’.  But they are brilliant fun (even when sober!) and I am now a photo booth convert thanks to the lovely people from Snaparazzi.

Our gorgeous faces / ugly mugs courtesy of Snaparazzi

 3. Find the vendors who love what they do

A wedding fair is a great opportunity to chat to the people behind the products and services. When you find something you love on the internet you don’t always get to know about the person who makes/does it, but at a wedding fair you get to instantly see if they are passionate about what they do. These are the people that are going to make or break your wedding day so if they make the effort to listen to you, and obviously care about what they do, you’re onto a winner.

I also learned a thing or two about myself at the fair…

I might not love cars, but I do love camper vans

I’m don’t get excited about wedding cars, so it surprised me that my favourite thing about the wedding fair was this fantabulous green VW Camper Van aka Vera from VW Camper Hire. They even have a self-drive hire of their white van, Vernon

Introducing Vera from VW Camper Hire

Inside Vera

I love Tulle

I can’t get enough of the stuff. Of course when my time comes I will try on every kind of dress possible, but I think that tulle might just be the material for me.

Dress by Lusan Mandongus

I want to DIY the bits I’m good at 

As a crafty pair with design & marketing backgrounds Rachel and I realised we could make most of the invitations on offer ourselves, and with our professional hats on few of the invitations made us go wow. My only reason for outsourcing with invitations would be if I found an amazing illustrator or designer who did something my other half and I really loved.

With cakes it’s what’s on the inside that counts

I was really excited about the cake samples (I’m a big fan of cake!) but they were all teeny tiny and tasted like supermarket cakes. I’m sure in a proper tasting session it would be different, but the texture and flavour was lost in the chaos of a wedding fair. There was only a couple of cakes I was really excited about the look of, which has led me to the conclusion that when I find the perfect cake I’ll know because it tastes delicious!

What I’d send to Room 101

Chair covers... euw!

Chair covers. Can not stand them. They are ill fitting and the big bows make me cringe. Don’t get me wrong I’m not going to throw a hissy fit at someone else’s wedding if they have them, but I won’t have a whiff of a chair cover anywhere near any wedding or other celebration that I plan!

Do you have any wedding fair tips or experiences to share with other readers? Leave your comments below

Let me entertain you…

If you’ve ever been a guest at a wedding you know about the quiet moments. Quiet moments can sometimes be quite long and boring. They are most likely to happen when the happy couple are off with the photographer having romantic and scenic shots taken, or when you get kicked out of the room between the wedding breakfast and the evening do.

When you’re planning a wedding it’s easy to forget that there can be minutes (sometimes hours) where you will be doing something and your guests will be left to entertain themselves (or in the case of Celebrity Wedding Planner with Jedward last week, left on a coach for two hours!!!)

Photograph from friday-ad.co.uk

When you’ve worked which parts of your day will involve your guests being left to their own devices how do you entertain them? Here are a few ideas… some are blatantly nicked from weddings I’ve attended and I’d like to thank those couples for thinking of the rest of us!

1. Drink

Drinks are welcome at any time. Sounds obvious, but there’s nothing worse than being a guest and not knowing where to get a drink (alcoholic or otherwise) from. Any time that you’re guests are likely to be sat around make sure there are drinks provided, or at least a bar where they can buy their own. You may even provide a drinks reception before the wedding, especially if you know you’re prone to running late. When the champagne is flowing no one cares how late the bride is… except maybe the nervous groom!

Kristin Spencer Photography via Style Me Pretty

2. Food

This isn’t a necessity, but do think about when you’re guests are likely to have last eaten. If you’re getting married around 1-2pm chances are that you’re guests will have eaten brunch late morning, but as it might be 5pm before your sit down meal is served you might want to provide some nibbles to keep them going. Especially if they have free flowing alcohol at their disposal.

A food station by Daniel et Daniel

From watching far too much of Four Weddings US, I’ve learned that while we might forget to feed our guests, in the States there is a trend to do the complete opposite. They have cocktail hour, which involves many ‘food stations’. They look fabulous, but they manage to stuff their guests with food from every continent, before sending them in for a three course meal. I can’t decide which is worse… too much food or too little?

3. Games

Now you’ve met your guests basic needs what about entertaining them? You can get some brilliant little trivia boxes to leave around the area they have been waiting, nothing like a bit of competition among guests to make the time fly by. The best site I’ve found for these is Talking Tables – a huge selection, including trivia for kids, and nice brightly coloured boxes, not all pale and weddingy!

Table Trivia by Talking Tables (from £3)

If there’s an outdoor area how about getting some games going? If you’re guests are dressed up then you don’t want anything that’s going to get them hot and sweaty, but something like giant skittles is perfect – and lots of fun. On the other hand, blokes and kids don’t seem to get as worried about the hot and sweaty thing, and I have witnessed a full on game of football before an evening do!

Foam Bowling Game from the Early Learning Centre (£18)

And if you are sending people outdoors why not invest in some wedding bubbles. Always fun for big kids!

4. Entertainment

When I think weddings and entertainment the first thought that pops into my mind is the evening do. But entertainment doesn’t have to be saved for the end of the day. Why not stick it smack bang in the middle when people least expect it.

The best entertainment I’ve ever had at a wedding is going to the fun fair next door to the hotel during the lull. Every guest was given a few 10p & 2p coins and a free ride on the carousel. It was brilliant!

Photography by Mister Phill

If your wedding isn’t taking place next to a fun fair there are other options. Magicians are great, at the last wedding I went to I was sat on a table with an off-duty magician and he kept us entertained for quite a while. There are mixed feelings about magicians, but you just have to watch someone demonstrating magic tricks in Harrod’s toy department to know that they can be completely captivating.

On the other hand I’d never recommend a clown. That may just be because I have developed a irrational fear of men dressed up in bright clothes with painted faces and big shoes. Then again if you have guests with clown phobia they’ll probably entertain themselves by finding somewhere to hide.

5. Guestbooks… 

The humble guestbook has had a massive make over in the past few years and now can be entertainment in itself. You can turn pretty much anything into a guestbook and keep your guests entertained at the same time. Postcards, cut out shapes, blank canvases, post-it notes, fingerprints, doodles… if you can think of an idea you can make it happen.

Fingerprint "guestbook" via glamourandgraceblog.com

And then there’s the photo booth or even better the awesome Camperbooth. It was a DIY job for their own wedding that turned into a business! Camperbooth or regular booth, you just hire it (or set it up yourself and provide a few prop) and your guests get silly. I’ve not been to a wedding with one of these yet, but I hear reports that they are lots of fun – and I’ve seen the many pictures to prove it.

Camperbooth

What are you doing to entertain your guests on your wedding day? Do they need entertaining? Share your thoughts in the comments below… 

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