Wedding Costs – The Facts!

It’s no secret that weddings are an expensive thing, but just how much they can cost never fails to surprise newly engaged couples. Today Samantha shares the secrets behind your spending, to help you understand just how much wedding suppliers actually cost, but why they’re totally worth their weight in cofetti… 

Whilst it isn’t always necessary to fork out a fistful of cash for your wedding day, it is important to remember that for some aspects of your wedding, your hard earned pennies really are going a long way to ensure a perfect day.

As a wedding planner, I often hear questions asked over the supposedly ridiculous sums of money being requested by certain suppliers for the services they supply. But it is important to remember that in many cases, your finance doesn’t just fund what you see on the day. Hours and hours of hard work, quality equipment, and professional commitment go in to your wedding, both before and after the big day itself – so here’s a little glimpse in to the truth about supplier fees, and why many in the industry are simply worth their salt when saying ‘I do.’

Photographers

The facts: Most photographers will snap away for an average 10 – 12 hours on a wedding day, capturing your every tiny moment from when you put your mascara on, to when you cry it off again during the first dance. They never miss a beat to ensure that you don’t miss a moment.

That’s a long time to be running around on your feet come rain or shine, with a heavy camera around your neck, different lenses in hand, and with a back pack the size of a small suitcase never leaving your side either. Often, they don’t even get a spare moment to nip to the loo or grab a sip of water between shots of the bridal party and your mingling guests.

Photographers work hard. Fact.

Not to mention then the hours – days! – spent editing on average 600-1000 photos after the wedding, to ensure you get that one memorable snap above your mantelpiece. And, of course, there’s the engagement shoot they did with you a few weeks before, the endless emails, the studying the venue and day plan, and the travel they put in to being there on your day… those extra hours really do clock up!

I’m a big believer in good photography, and truly feel that where your photos are concerned it’s worth paying well. These are the memories that will last a life time… and you’re paying for an artist, after all.

Look out for: Photographers who offer a full package from start of the day until shortly after the first dance, rather than by setting time restraints. Second shooters are always a bonus for maximum coverage (they have to be paid as well though!), and how many photos you receive after the wedding and in what format all counts in ensuring your money goes far.

Recommended Spend: £1,500 – £3,000. 

Wedding Costs - Oh So Perfect - Sarah Gawler

Videographers

The facts: Pretty much the same as above! These guys use some bloody expensive equipment don’t forget, and that needs insuring too. It might seem pricey now, but in years to come, having the beautiful footage of your father’s speech will prove truly priceless.

Look out for: What equipment will your videographer use on the day – is it HD and loaded with snazzy extras? Will they be using a drone? (They should use a drone – drones are AWESOME). Find out how long the finished video will run for, and whether your guests can download copies of the highlights too.

Recommended Spend: £1500-£2500

Florist

The Facts: The cost of a florist will of course depend largely upon the sort of flower display you’d like for your wedding. If you want big, blousy blooms, large red roses, lilies, and peonies a-plenty, it’s important you’re prepared to pay for them (or else consider cheaper alternatives!).

But even so, a florist is responsible not just for styling the day itself, but for all the creativity that goes into helping you implement the bulk of the décor. Often, they spend long hours in and out of consultation with you making a plan to help achieve your dream floral vision, and in the days before the wedding they work all hours taking delivery, visiting the flower markets, and prepping and pruning the perfect posies, in order to put it all together on the day – which in itself will take a whole morning!

There’s also all the props and pretty vases, candles, ribbons and wire, that come together to create a floral feast for the eyes.

Look out for: photographic examples of a florist’s work will give you a clear vision of what to expect for your money. Find out whether you’ll need to hire props and vases separately or if this is part of the package, and will the florist be growing her own seasonal blooms or ordering them in?

Recommended Spend: £1000 – £3000 (depending on your expectations!)

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Cake

The Facts: Brides are often rather surprised at the cost of a wedding cake, but remember we’re talking about a cake that’s at least 2 tiers bigger than your standard birthday bake, and with enough sponge packed in to feed the hundreds!

Quality cakes use quality ingredients – Belgian chocolate, freshly laid eggs, the finest sugar – these things don’t come cheap! Your cake maker will spend a good few days working in her kitchen to ensure the base is perfectly balanced and the right amount of spring is in your sponge. As for icing – that sugar crafted cascade of flowers will have taken oooh hours of fiddly perfection to get right!

Look out for: Try before you buy – look at previous examples of your supplier’s work, and go for a tasting to choose your flavours.  Delicious cakes are something to be sampled! Find out where your cake’s ingredients will be sourced from and the quality of them, plus whether your hire includes a stand and set up fee too. If you’re after something more exquisite, find out where your cake maker trained and what creative qualifications they have to justify their cost.

Recommended spend: £350-500 for 3 tiers. 

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Live Music

The facts: When you hire a band, it’s important to note you’re not booking one man; you’re probably booking 4 or 5 of them. Similarly, you’re not just paying for 2 x 1 hour sets – you’re paying for the hour set up, the set, the break, the set again, and the break down – and that can be 5 or 6 hours on site, not even counting the travel.

Then there’s the rehearsals… learning the new songs you’ve requested… preparing your playlists… it all adds up!

At the end of the night, think how exhausted you felt after dancing. Yep, them too. Being super cool on stage comes at quite a toll!

Look out for: Consider how many people are in the band and where they’re coming from – could you look for a group that’s smaller or nearer? Check out their current playlists and repertoire – do they already cover most of the songs you want to hear or will you be asking for a few extras? Will they take requests on the night? Make sure you listen to their music in advance, even if it’s a recording or a video, to see what their talent is really all about and how they respond to their crowd.

Recommended Spend: £800-£1,200

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Catering

The Facts: Remember that time you hosted Christmas for Mum, Dad, Granny, Grandpa, your Aunts, Uncles, their seven unruly children, and Great-Auntie Norah’s dog? Well imagine that, but times it by 10. Yeah. Stress.

Your caterers will have been up since dawn peeling and prepping fancy vegetables, chilling chocolate, and trying to work out which wine is for the tables, and which is for the bar. Not to mention that last night they set up an entire kitchen in a field for you.

A good catering team doesn’t just consist of the one chap you were emailing beforehand, there are chefs, sous chefs, waiting staff, bar staff, delivery people, office people – a whole small army of people involved in ensuring the starters come out at 18:00. These people have been working for days to prepare your wedding breakfast, and they won’t stop when it finishes either. Pots need to be cleaned, cutlery filed, and ovens collected; all before they can sit down and tuck in to a sandwich.

Look out for: What equipment does your caterers/venue already have at their disposal, or will they need to hire something in? Do you need a generator for them? A chiller unit? Where will they source their ingredients, and what’s the presentation like? Will it be silver service at the table, or a help yourself buffet? Always go for a tasting to get your menu just-so and read up on past testimonials about not just the food but the service too. You pay for top quality in a restaurant, so do it on your wedding day as well.

Recommended Spend: £80-£100 per head. 

Wedding Costs - Oh So Perfect - Sarah Gawler

So there you have it, it’s not just a case of popping on a frock and raising a glass on the day. Hours and pennies go in to a wedding, not just for you the organised bride, but for everyone involved in making your dream come true.

Sure, cut your budget where you can, and there’s lots of ways to do so too. But where quality is concerned, sometimes you really do get what you pay for… so spend those pennies wisely!

Post written By Samantha Kelsie Imbimbo and first published on Wedding Planner. Post later published on Oh So Perfect and UK Celebrant blogs. All images in this post are by Sarah Gawler Photography and show images from Jonathan and Muncelle’s wedding – planned and coordinated by Oh So Perfect. 

Top Tips: How To Handle Wedding Stress

There’s no denying that wedding planning can be very stressful, and you certainly wouldn’t be the first bride to admit feeling it either. When wedding planning reaches its most complicated, it can be easy to get caught up in the negatives and emotions of it all and lose sight of what it’s really all about…

…but? It’s about you getting married. It’s about saying ‘I do!’ It’s about realising how much you love somebody, and making that commitment to them in front of all your nearest and dearest.

It’s not about whether Auntie Jacqui and Uncle Marvin can bear to spend one afternoon in the same room as each other, and it’s certainly not about whether or not anyone will notice what colour ribbon was on the guest book either.

Whilst all of the little wedding details can be super exciting to think about and plot and plan, they’re certainly not worth losing your head over. Try to keep sight of the bigger picture and what’s really important…

Here  are some top tips to help you get your calm back:

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Take a break

Your wedding doesn’t need to be on your mind 24 hours a day 7 days a week. It’s OK to take some time off to think about something else for a few days. Maybe even for a whole week!

Ban the word ‘wedding’

Make an agreement with your fiancé/family/best friend to ban the word wedding from your vocabulary on certain days. For example, no one is allowed to discuss anything wedding related on Monday through to Wednesday… or after 6pm on a Saturday… or at the dinner table…. or when Game Of Thrones is on… etc.

Have a pre-wedding mini-moon

Who says the honeymoon is only allowed after the wedding? Book a cosy weekend away with your fiancé to have some fun and relaxation and remember exactly why you fell in love in the first place… that’s why you decided to get married after all isn’t it?

Write a list and scribble it out!

Jot down all the things that are bothering you or making you feel most stressed. For each one, ask yourself out loud – does it really matter? If the answer is ‘yes’ then sit down and write the reasons why, and what you can do to fix it. If it’s ‘no’ draw a big line through it and yell out ‘it doesn’t matter!’ Maybe ask your bridesmaids to do this with you for a bit of moral support, and an outsider’s perspective too!

Delegate, delegate, delegate…

Believe it or not, there are lots of people who will want to help you with your wedding! Bridesmaids are there to be useful, and mothers LOVE any opportunity to get involved. Why not offload a few of the smaller tasks to them and take some of the stress off yourself for a while.

Call in the Professionals

No, I don’t mean a shrink! Many wedding planners now provide a helping hand for couples organising their own wedding by offering a one-off wedding help session. Book in an hour or two with your nearest wedding planner to talk through your plans so far and check you’re on track with all that you need to do. Some (myself included!) even offer this service over the phone or Skype to lend a listening ear and offer some tips and advice to help you on your way.

Step away from the Pinterest board!

Pinterest is a beautiful blessing, isn’t it? But it’s also a bit of a curse! Let me say this simply – your wedding will (probably not/ very unlikely/ it’s pretty doubtful) look exactly like that one there in that picture. That picture (probably not/ very unlikely/ it’s pretty doubtful ) wasn’t even a real wedding in the first place. Be inspired, but don’t become obsessed…. you’ll only disappoint yourself later.

Don’t sweat the small stuff

Whatever the bridal blogs may tell you, truthfully, the biggest part of your wedding day is the bit where you say ‘I do!’ After all, isn’t that technically what the whole meaning of the day is really all about?

Don’t lose sight of why you are doing what you are doing. You are getting married. Not designing a feature shoot for Hello Magazine.

Feelings Come First

People won’t remember what shade of cream the napkins were, or how many teeny tiny lavender buds were mixed in with the confetti you scattered next to the home-made bunting (which, by the way, was an exact colour match of the bridesmaids’ knickers.)

People remember how pretty you looked when you smiled your way down the aisle; how they teared-up a little when your dad made his father of the bride speech; and what incredible shapes Granny threw on the dance floor to the sounds of Robin Thicke.

Don’t let your memory of the wedding be how stressed out you made yourself trying to figure out many portions of wedding cake it might take to fill up a vintage vase on a dessert table.

Stop

Right now. Turn off the lap top. Put down your iPad. You’re reading wedding articles again and you shouldn’t be. Now, go apply a face mask and make a cup of tea. (Or get back to work – you office time rebel, you!)

This article was written by Samantha Imbimbo and first published on www.weddingplanner.co.uk. It has since been published on www.ohsoperfect.co.uk and ukcelebrant.co.uk. All words and images are the property of Samantha Imbimbo. 

Top Tips: Children at Weddings

Lot’s of couples now are opting to have child-free weddings, and that’s OK – remember it’s your day, your way!

Read on for some top tips on how to deal with children and your wedding day, whether or not you decide to invite them…

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  • NAME YOUR GUESTS

Be clear on who you are inviting from the very beginning, by specifically addressing those invited on the invitation. If you are choosing to invite only the adults, address it thus so:

“Sarah & David”

Or, if the whole family are invited, address your invitation to everyone:

“Sarah, David, Millie & George / Sarah, David & Family / The Butler Family”

  • BE CLEAR

It’s OK not to invite children to your wedding if you prefer, but it is important that you are clear with your guests from the start. If not, you may confuse your guests or risk leaving them unsure, or worse still, they may find themselves feeling very embarrassed on the day when they arrive with the buggy! Include a clear but polite message on the information insert of your invitation, outlining your wishes.

  • ONE RULE FOR ALL

Play fair to your guests; it’s not cool to allow some people to bring children and not others as it could upset or offend those told NO when they see other guests with their kids on the day – especially if they’ve forked out for a babysitter back home! If you have children involved your ceremony, most guests will be more understanding of this, but be where clear to draw the line beyond this.

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  • BREAK UP YOUR DAY

Perhaps you wish to have a child-free ceremony, but are happy for guests to bring children to the reception? This is fine! Consider breaking up your day into ‘parts’ to include guests with families where welcome. Again, be clear on the invitation by perhaps inviting families to the evening reception only, or include a jovial note on the insert to politely inform guests that whilst you would prefer no young ones be present when saying your ‘I dos’ you welcome them to come and party with you afterwards.

  • AGE MATTERS

Perhaps you would prefer to only include guests of a certain age: “We welcome guests over the age of 10 to join us…” Or “We politely request that younger guests are collected by 7pm leaving mum and dad to let their hair down with us late into the night…” are all perfectly acceptable requests.

  • STRATEGIC SEATING

Be thoughtful to seat younger families towards to back of your ceremony, allowing them an easy escape if they need one, and ensuring any unexpected noises are further away from where you are positioned to say your vows. Ask your ushers to guide families towards these seats when entering the ceremony venue – your guests will understand!

  • PERFECT PLANNING

When plotting your wedding breakfast, seat families together where children can entertain each other, and parents can feel more comfortable together. Try to place tables with children towards the back of the room, so that younger voices are less likely to interrupt the speeches, and busy feet have a little more freedom to run around without disturbing diners.

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  • ENTERTAINMENT

If you have lots of children attending your wedding, it’s vital to cater for them too – they are also your guests, after all! Include some lawn games, bubbles, and kids activities for them to safely enjoy whilst mum and dad are sipping the champers, and place colouring books and quiet toys on the tables to entertain them through dinner. Hire a bouncy castle for the evening too – although you can guarantee it won’t just be the kids having fun on this!

  • GIVE US ANOTHER ONE!

It’s important to remember that children are children! Sitting at a dinner table for 2-3 hours is quite the challenge for any wedding guest, especially if they’re a little one, so if you have the budget available, why not consider hiring a children’s entertainer for the afternoon? After dinner, have the children escorted to a separate room where they can be entertained by a magician or clown, or watch a puppet show or film. Parents will be able to relax a little, and you and your guests can all enjoy the speeches without interruption.

  • BABY, BABY…

If you are planning to invite a lot of children to your wedding, choose a venue with plenty of family accommodation on site. That way, guests have the freedom to put babies to sleep in the evening and continue to party, knowing they’re safe nearby. Better still, you could hire in a group of nannies or babysitters to take care of the younger children in their own rooms, so that parents can really relax and enjoy the rest of the night without distraction, or needing to depart early.

This article was originally written by Samantha Kelsie Imbimbo for WeddingPlanner.co.uk. The article was first published on WeddingPlanner.co.uk in February 2016. For more details about wedding planning, visit www.ohsoperfect.co.uk

Top Tips: Where to begin when planning your wedding…

It’s always a little daunting when you start planning your wedding to know quite where to begin, but if you start at the very top with your budget and thoughts towards a date and venue, you’ll soon have a much clearer picture of the day you’re planning and the ball will start rolling very naturally to plan the rest!

The budget can be a difficult subject to start with, but it’s important to discuss this openly with your fiancé early on to be sure of your financial ability, and be able manage your wedding expectations within realistic reach of your money potential. As long as you are clear from the start about how much you would like to spend, and how you will fund your big day, then any dream can be made a possibility with careful thought and planning.

Here are some top tips to help get you started…

• THINK ABOUT YOUR BUDGET.

Before you do anything, it is important to sit down and discuss how much you feel comfortable spending on your big day. Consider where you will gather your finances from – Will you use your savings? Take out a loan? Will your family make a contribution? Speak to family members who may wish to contribute early on to be clear about how much help they may wish to give, or arrange a meeting with your bank manager to discuss your savings and the options for taking out a small loan. Discussion and planning is key though as it’s important not to find yourself with a disheartening debt to see you in to the start of married life!

• RESEARCH AND TAKE NOTE.

Once a budget is set, do your best to stick to it. Write it down on a piece of paper, or start a spreadsheet to help you keep on track of spending as you go – it will save you from any surprises later down the line. Make sure to keep note of when payments and final balances are due, as these may pile up into a few weeks before the wedding and you’ll need to be prepared with your bank balance ready. Check if your suppliers have included VAT in their quotes and ask if there are any additional set up fees or travel expenses, as you’ll need to account for these extras within your budget too. Don’t be afraid to shop around and compare quotes from different suppliers before committing to a deposit.

• BE REALISTIC. 

It is perfectly possible to plan a beautiful wedding on any given budget – whether you have millions to spend or a modest amount, anything is possible as long as you stay true to your expectations. If you’re dreaming of a huge marquee wedding in the grounds of a stately home on a Saturday in August, you must be prepared to pay the premium prices to do so, as this is peak wedding season and Saturday’s are high in demand! However, if your budget is slightly more restricted, you can still plan a day which is equally as lovely, as long as you are honest with yourself about what you expect your perfect day to look like, and plan carefully to find the right costs to suit you.

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• TIME IT RIGHT.

Some venues offer different rates depending on the time of season you book them, even altering fees by as much as a few thousand pounds depending on the date you choose! If a weekend wedding is really what you want, consider a Saturday in April or October, as it will likely be significantly cheaper than Saturday in July or August. If a High Summer wedding is top of your wish list, consider booking your wedding for a Sunday, when the rates may be a few hundred pounds cheaper compared to a wedding booked on the one day before.

• ALLOW TIME.

There are no rules about how long it takes to plan a wedding, but a good recommendation would be to set yourself 18-24 months in preparation of your dream day. Many venues and much-sought-after suppliers get booked up a year or two in advance, so if you have someone very specific in mind to take your photos or bake your cake, you may have to be prepared to wait for them to be available. The hours needed to research suppliers, visit venues, and email enquiries can really mount up too, so if juggling this with a full time job, family, and commitments, you’ll likely find those extra months will help to fit everything in and make planning a less stressful task too. By allowing more time, you may be able to plan ahead and save up a few extra pennies in the wedding planning piggy bank along the way!

• THE CHICKEN OR THE EGG?

What decision should come first when planning your wedding – the venue, or the date?

It simply depends on which is more important to you. If you have a very specific date in mind for when you wish to wed, you may find that your first choice venue is already booked up, meaning you‘ll need to be prepared to consider looking elsewhere for somewhere suitable. Similarly, if your heart is set on that stunning barn/castle/stately home that you’ve been lusting after, find out what dates they currently have available and be prepared to choose from what they have on offer to secure your perfect pad.

Oh So Perfect Weddings

• FINDING YOUR VENUE.

There are so many options now when choosing a venue, it can be hard to know where to look first. Make a list of what you consider to be the ‘essentials’ (Location? Accommodation? Outdoor access?) and the ‘preferables’ (Type of catering? Colour scheme? Swimming pool/spa?) then use this to help you check off the list when researching possibilities. Plan a visit to some of your first choices and take your time there to ask questions whilst you walk around and gather a feel for the venue. You could even arrange to visit some of those venues which perhaps you are less sure of too, as you may discover something more desirable in person which you missed on the website!

• GET PINNING!

Pinterest is a bride’s best friend when starting out planning your wedding. Let your thoughts go free to the wind, scour online wedding blogs and directories, and pin anything and everything that inspires you or takes your fancy. It may seem a little indulgent at first, but you will start to see patterns forming in your pinning which offer suggestion to the style of wedding you imagine having, even if you didn’t realise it yourself! Of course, don’t expect your wedding to look exactly like those weddings you see in the snaps, but do use the images to gain a feel for your perfect day.  You can share your board with your suppliers along the way to give them an insight into what you’re thinking too.

Plan your budget…..

Think about your proposed wedding date…

Find your venue….

Before you know it you’ll have the location booked and a date set firmly in the diary, and you’ll be well on your way towards planning your perfect wedding!

Love,

Samantha x
Wedding Planner and Owner at Oh So Perfect

This article was written by Samantha Kelsie Imbimbo for WeddingPlanner.co.uk. The article first featured on WeddingPlanner.co.uk in January 2016. All photos belong to Oh So Perfect.

For more details about planning your wedding visit www.ohsoperfect.co.uk

Hazel Griffiths – Testimonial

Client Testimonial 

Washington-based couple Jill and Nick planned their full wedding with the help of Oh So Perfect from August 2013 up until the big day the following July. Oh So Perfect were delighted to assist in the full planning, design and coordination of this wonderful Welsh wedding for our darling international clients.

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“Hi Samantha,

Now we are home and things are settled down I wanted to take the time to thank you so much for making Nick and Jill’s wedding such a great success. We all had a wonderful time and everything went along so smoothly thanks to your organization and planning You managed everything so unobstrusively and with great charm and tact and it was a real pleasure working with you.

Do keep in touch…. you are always welcome to come and visit us in Texas!

Very best wishes and many,many thanks,

Hazel”

Hazel Griffiths – Mother of the Groom

To view all the photos from Jill and Nick’s American Fairytale Wedding in Wales, just follow this link!

Need help planning your wedding day? Visit www.ohsoperfect.co.uk for our full list of wedding planning and coordination packages and services.

Oh So Perfect offer expert advice in the June/July ‘Your Berks, Bucks, Oxon Wedding’ Magazine

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Have you picked up your June/July copy of Your Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wedding magazine just yet? Well if not then you’d better hop to it oh so lovelies as we’re featured in this latest edition answering your questions and offering our wedding planner’s expert advice on everything you need to know about wedding venues and outdoor ceremonies.

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Pick up your copy and flick through to page 92 for the full feature which not only includes our expert advice but also our photos of Sam and Rick’s outdoor ‘celebration of marriage’ ceremony and Emma and Andy’s now rather famous purple pompoms too! And of course Your County Wedding mag is always packed full of all sorts of other wonderful features including tips, gossip, fashion and beauty, real-life weddings and everything else you could possibly need to get your monthly bridal fix….

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If you’d like more advice about planning an outdoor wedding – or any wedding for that matter – or require some coordination and assistance on your wedding day, take a look at our website www.ohsoperfect.co.uk for our full list of wedding packages and services to suit you.

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Would you like to feature Oh So Perfect in your wedding magazine or blog? Contact our wedding planner Samantha direct to discuss editorial opportunities today: samantha@ohsoperfect.co.uk

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Need help planning your wedding day? Visit www.ohsoperfect.co.uk for our full list of wedding planning and coordination packages and services.

2014 Wedding Season… ready, steady, oh so go!

We’re oh so excited up at Perfect HQ this afternoon as the sun is shining in through the office window and there’s only two days to go before our first wedding of the 2014 season kicks off – hooray!

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We’ve been a little slower starting our season this year compared to last; last Spring saw us with two weddings in April and now gearing up towards our third, but this year we’re starting a little later with our first date in May. That said though, we also squeezed in three glorious winter weddings at the end of 2013 so it doesn’t feel quite as a long a gap between the seasons as the year before last!

Don’t be fooled though lovelies, starting our first wedding of 2014 a little later certainly doesn’t mean that we haven’t had a busy few months at Oh So Perfect this year already. We’ve been at our desks since January working hard on the year ahead, not only changing things within the business and updating our website (we relocated to Buckinghamshire a few months ago, did you hear?) but also writing editorial for Your Berks, Bucks and Oxon magazine, making contact with new suppliers, and of course not to mention the thing we do best – wedding planning!

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We’ve been busy working hard with international couples this year, assisting with the full planning of one very big wedding due to take place in July, and a huge family gathering (Oh So Perfect don’t just work on weddings either!) taking place at the end of this month too. We also helped a lovely Welsh couple to source a marquee with our Oh So Helpful as and when wedding planning service and held a few meetings with brides here and there to help them along their wedding planning way. Plus, next month our very own wedding planner Samantha is hanging up her clipboard for a day as she takes on the role of Maid of Honour for her best friend, so we’ve dipped our toes into the glamorous world of organising  hen parties too in recent weeks!

So, with the first big wedding of the year only 2 days away – and oh yes it’s certainly a big one (did someone say 400 guests in a marquee on the Gower peninsula….?)  – we’re busy, busy finalising schedules and plans, updating emails, and preparing our clipboard for the coming event. My fabulous South Wales assistant Anthony is gearing up his clipboard too to assist with organising and overseeing all the events at the marquee on Saturday morning as the suppliers arrive and set up, whilst Samantha will be working closely with the bride at her home helping her and her attendants get ready and arrive at the church on time. This bride has cleverly made the most of our newest package the Oh So Lovely – Bride’s Best Friend to ensure maximum support throughout the morning, afternoon and evening too.

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Later this afternoon I’ll be taking out the Oh So Oh No! emergency pink kit box and ensuring that it’s once again full to the brim with everything a good wedding planner could possibly need to help with any hiccups on the day… not that there will be any hiccups, this is an Oh So Perfect wedding after all! We’ve already loaded the car with our big white bridal brollies just in case, though with the current weather forecast showing blue sky and sunshine here’s hoping we won’t need them, but better to be prepared!

The 2014 season is about to kick off, and we have weddings taking place through May, June, July and August already on our books, but it’s not too late to add yours to the mix too so if you’d like any help with some Oh So Supportive – On The Day Coordination for your wedding day in England or Wales this year, make sure you get in touch quick to make the most of the wonderful packages and services we have to offer!

Until next time, lovelies….. xx

 

Need help planning your wedding day? Visit www.ohsoperfect.co.uk for our full list of wedding planning and coordination packages and services.

Top 10 Wedding Planning Dos and Don’ts – Western Mail 24th August 2013

Oh So Perfect – In The Press

Our wedding planner Samantha has been at it again,  this time sharing her oh so handy tips and advice in South Wales’ biggest newspaper – The Western Mail. Samantha’s article ‘Top 10 Wedding Planning Dos and Don’ts’ was featured in the Western Mail’s weekend supplement wedding special on Saturday 24th August 2013 – here’s a catch up of the article in case you missed it!

Samantha Imbimbo and Oh So Perfect in the Western Mail

Samantha Imbimbo and Oh So Perfect in the Western Mail

1. DO start with the budget. Sit down together and realistically discuss how much you would like to spend on your wedding, and how you will fund it. Will you use savings?  A loan? Will your family want to help out? Only spend what you can afford – you don’t want to end up with debt spoiling the honeymoon!

2. DO put together a rough guest list as early as possible. It doesn’t have to be set in stone, and it may change here and there as the months go on, but it will give you a clear indication of numbers for when you start booking your venue and catering.

 3. DON’T forget to think about your venue’s interior. If you’re already set on a colour scheme or theme, try to find a venue which compliments your existing choices, or else choose a theme which is supported by the colours already present in your venue’s décor. A blue colour scheme in a room with red carpets and gold curtains, for example, will only clash, so use your venue to its full aesthetic advantage!

4. DO design the invitations carefully. The wedding invitation is the first ‘clue’ guests receive about the overall style of your big day – so try to create an invitation which ties in to your colour scheme or theme so your guests have a clear indication of what they can expect on the day.

5. DO DIY Cut costs and add a personal touch by doing-it-yourself where you can. Involve your friends and family by asking them to help you make your own favours, build your own sweetie station or craft some decorations of your own. Online blogs are a great place to pick up ideas and tutorials.

6. DO seat friends and family together. It was once tradition at the wedding breakfast to seat your guests with people they hadn’t met before, but often this can leave the room feeling very sober as guests exchange polite chit-chat. Scrap formalities and seat your guests together with the people they know – the atmosphere will be lively and your guests will have a more enjoyable experience.

7. DON’T forget the kids. If you’ve invited guests to bring their children, make sure there is something available to keep them entertained. Place a colouring book or packet of bubbles on the tables with children seated at to play with during the speeches, or even hire-in an event nanny who will keep the children entertained with toys and games all evening while your guests are busy dancing.

8. DO practise your first dance. All eyes are on you here, and it can be embarrassing if you’ve not prepared. You don’t have to book a dancing lesson or choreograph a routine, but make sure you have a little slow dance at home together to your song a week or two before just to make sure you’re used to each other’s pace and movements before you take the stage. Plus it’ll spark a romantic evening for you both before the wedding!

9. DON’T forget the groom. Girls, it’s easy to get carried away with the excitement of planning a wedding, but remember there will be two of you exchanging vows, so be sure to include your man in the decision making and allow him the personal touches he’d like too. (Except the perhaps the bunny-girl waitresses – there’s a limit!)

10. DO have fun, and hire an on the day coordinator! Planning your wedding is one of the most exciting things you’ll ever do, and many people do it without the help of a wedding planner; but do consider hiring a coordinator for the big day itself– you’ll be able to relax and enjoy the day you spent so long planning, knowing someone else is there to set up and keep watch while you’re focusing on having fun.

Need help planning your wedding day? Visit www.ohsoperfect.co.uk for our full list of wedding planning, styling and coordination packages and services.

Your South Wales Wedding Magazine May/June 2013

Perfect in the Press

May/June 2013Planning problems? Your County Wedding Magazine asked South Wales’ top experts to guide you through the what, where and when of weddings… including our very own Oh So Perfect Wedding Planner, Samantha Imbimbo.

Time seemed to stop as he bent his knee, your heart raced as you spied the unmistakeable glint of a diamond solitaire and somehow, you managed to blurt out the word ‘yes’ through tears of joy. Welcome to the whirlwind that is planning your wedding.

That first flush of engagement fever is to be savoured but it won’t be long before the planning starts in earnest. “Make sure you spend some time celebrating your new status – after all, there’s so much love in the air right now – but once all the chaos and celebrations fade, it’s time to get down to business,” advises Samatha Imbimbo of Oh So Perfect –Weddings and Events.

Pop into your local newsagent now to pick up your copy of the May/June 2013 Your South Wales Wedding magazine and turn to page 49 of the current issue to read on.

Need help planning your wedding day? Visit www.ohsoperfect.co.uk for our full list of wedding planning, styling and coordination packages and services.

Dance The Night Together

Diary of a Wedding Planner

This week I have been busy researching musicians for one of my big theme weddings next year. It’s a break away from the themes and styles of the weddings I’ve delivered this year already, a fun modern Hollywood rom-com movie themed  and is so far proving great fun to design and style!

Researching the singers to perform in the church has got me thinking about how best to identify the right live music for your wedding, and the overall experience of planning a wedding as a whole.

It’s often very easy when planning your own wedding to get caught up in the stresses and trials of spending hours upon hours on the internet, flicking through magazines or gazing around wedding fairs looking for the different components of your big day, and as a result some couples find themselves in danger of loosing out on the enjoyment that planning your special day can bring, missing out on this opportunity to spend more time together as a couple, and on some very sad occasions even find themselves forgetting why they were planning a wedding in the first place!

My fab couple, Sarah and Rob, who booked an acoustic duo to play at their ceremony who they used to go and watch down their local pub.

I recently had the pleasure of discussing my job as a wedding planner with a very lovely lady – a writer – who wanted to know why I loved doing what I do. She told me that another, more unfortunate, wedding planner, had admitted that seeing her couples loose sight of their love as they became more concerned about flower arrangements and colour schemes drove the passion for wedding planning out of her system. I’m lucky enough that that has never, ever happened to me, and that’s because I believe it’s not just my job to plan and coordinate your wedding day (you lucky couples, you!), but also to help you along the way to feel excited about the decisions you make together and give you reasons to celebrate your love not only on the day itself, but in all the days leading up to this wonderful moment when you get to say “I do!”

So, going back to the live music… (I’m getting carried away in a love rant I fear), I feel it’s really important when you decide to go hunting for your live entertainment, to use this as an excellent opportunity to spend some time together, relaxing, and enjoying the experience of being oh so in love!

Get out there! Stop trawling online and look into your local area… Most of us live in or near enough to some brilliant towns and cities with plenty of opportunity to scope out some live bands who you may never have even heard of before, let alone found on a wedding directory. Head to your favourite pub or bar one evening when you know they have live music planned, and enjoy it! Listen to it, dance to it and perhaps if you like it, have a chat with the singer after their set.

Do you have a specific style of music in mind? Whether it’s a full band, a quartet, a harpist, acoustic duo, singers – whatever! Look up local music festivals and event listings in your area and go out on the town for a night to enjoy them in person. It’ll mean even more to you when you dance your first dance to the sounds of the band you first discovered in that little cocktail bar – your little cocktail bar – after that romantic wedding-planning-free evening you enjoyed 6 months ago…

Mr. Perfect and I in our favourite cocktail bar, shimmying along to the Spanish guitar, on one of the many occasions we failed to resist the urge for a little boogie… even on a quiet Sunday afternoon! 

Mr. Perfect and I used to spend many an enjoyable evening out just the two of us, dancing the night away together to whatever live band or duo happened to be playing that evening in our favourite little local cocktail bar. Yes, I admit it, we were that couple, the ones always dancing away whilst everybody else was sitting down with their drinks, but we never minded what people thought of us (well, maybe a little bit the next day!) – we were too busy enjoying what being a couple is really all about… spending time together and having fun with your best friend, and remembering why you got together in the first place.

Now, go book yourself a night out on the town!

With love,
Samantha x

Need help planning your wedding day? Visit www.ohsoperfect.co.uk for our full list of wedding planning, styling and coordination packages and services.

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