The HONEYMOONFOREVER A-Z of Weddings
Welcome to the HONEYMOONFOREVER A-Z of weddings.
A is for… Accessories
From shoes, to garters, from veils to bow ties there are so many finishing touches to be considered not just your look but your spouses and wedding party’s too. Go check out our complete guide to wedding accessories here.
B is for… Boutonnières
A boutonnièreis a floral decoration, typically a single flower or bud, worn on the lapel of a tuxedo or suit jacket.
On your wedding day, boutonnièresand corsages allow you to recognise the important people in your life. You might be wondering who should get a boutonnièreor corsage. It's up to you who you'd like to recognise at your wedding, but many brides and grooms choose to give these special floral accents to their parents and grandparents. The groomsmen traditionally wear boutonnieres as well, and we think it’s adorable to create a mini version for your ring bearer. Any other friends and family involved in the ceremony, such as officiants, readers and musicians, may also be honoured with this special touch.
Your florist will be able to create gorgeous designs that match the style of your wedding décor while also giving extra recognition to the ones you love.
C is for… Cake
Cake designers are getting more and more creative and there are so many styles and types to choose from that choosing the perfect wedding cake is becoming quite the bamboozling process. But here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we can help you find the cake of your dreams.
Here’s a few key tips and handy hints to get you started…
Typically, three tiers will serve 50 to 100 guests so you'll likely need five layers for 200 guests or more. You can give the illusion of a larger cake by increasing the cake's height with columns between the tiers.
Be realistic about your budget it’s important that you discuss budget at the beginning of the design process with your baker/cake designer to avoid any misunderstandings and don't feel pressurised into ordering a cake that is beyond your budget. Tiers, handmade sugar flowers, moulded shapes and metallic finishes all add significantly to the price, so if you are trying to keep the cost low it is best to avoid or minimise these. You could consider decorating with fresh flowers or fruit for a less expensive but equally beautiful finish.
Don't feel you have to settle for the traditional fruitcake, there are literally hundreds of flavours to choose from these days. Coffee, white chocolate and nut flavours have recently become popular as have citrus and fruit flavours. It makes most sense to stick to flavours that match the season of the wedding - light, dainty flavours for a spring or summer wedding and rich, heavy cakes for an autumn and winter wedding. If you're having different tiers you could have different flavours in each tier.
No matter what style of cake you choose, make sure it gets the credit it deserves by displaying it properly. Make sure there is a designated cake table that gives the best presentation possible. For a single tier cake in particular - borrow, rent or invest in a great cake stand to show the cake off to best advantage. Even the plainest cake can be brought to life with a beautiful cake topper.
D is for… Dietary requirements
Dietary requirements can cover everything from allergies to lifestyle choices, pregnancy and religious reasons. Regardless of whether you are having a small or lavish wedding, there are guaranteed to be varying dietary requirements – these need to be made clear to you and in turn to your caterer. Naturally, dietary requirements include allergies, as opposed to preferences, so here are the best ways for phrasing this to your guests (these are usually placed on the RSVP card).
Please advise on any dietary requirements below
We will be serving (dish), please let us know if you have any dietary requirements.
In order to avoid having too many options for your caterers to create on the day, once you have all your RSVPs in it’s worth discussing with your caterer options that are ‘safe’ for everyone.
E is for… Entertainment
From ceremony music to evening party your wedding entertainment ideas should reflect your own wedding style. Here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we are expects at sourcing all kinds of wedding entertainment from the traditional and classic choices to the absolutely extraordinary.
F is for… Flowers
Your wedding flowers will play an important part in the look of your big day. Whether you choose to just have a bouquet and buttonholes or to decorate your entire venue, your wedding flowers will be a huge part of setting the tone and theme for the day. Tight compact bunches of flowers, such as peonies and roses, fit a classic vibe. Lush arrangements of soft, big blooms will take on a romantic note. Sleek architectural minimalist arrangements are more modern and loose clusters of flowers mixed with greenery have a rustic feel.
But where do you start with choosing your wedding flowers? Do you go fresh or silk? What’s in season? What flower works together? What can you get for your budget? Here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we love advising couples on how to choose the flowers that best fit their personal style, venue and importantly, their budget. We can recommend wonderful florists to suit all styles, locations and budgets.
Our number one tip? Choose flowers that are in season on your wedding date. Seasonal flowers look better, are of better quality and are cheaper. That bride favourite, the peony, is in season in the UK from mid-May to early July: peonies are perfect for an English summer wedding but you’d have to ship them in from abroad at other times of year at high expense and at less than peak bloom. One of our favourite things to do with couples once they’ve set their date is to visit a local flower market and spend some time browsing all the flowers on offer. It’s best to visit around a year before your wedding date as then you'll see the same flowers that'll be in season for that time next year and might even be introduced to blooms you've never seen before.
G is for… Gifts
It’s in many couples nature that we find it difficult to ask for anything, thinking we might look too presumptuous. But most wedding guests wouldn’t dream of attending a wedding without having purchased a gift, so we highly recommend having a gift list so they know what to buy.
We can create a beautiful online registry for you and take all the stress away from what should be a super fun part of your wedding prep. Whether you would like a traditional wedding list where guests can purchase gifts of your choice, a honeymoon registry where guests can buy you amazing honeymoon experiences or even a charity gift list where guests can make contributions in your name to a charity of your choice - we can do it all. We know all the best gift list providers and can advise on the most up to date costings and which service best fits your particular needs. We can design your list for you and even add items for you if you wish.
With such a wide variety of gift list options available we can create a list that's a true reflection of your personalities and style, choosing gorgeous gifts from all of your favourite shops or asking guests to make a contribution to big ticket items such as the perfect honeymoon or a deposit for your first home. As long as it’s personal, important to you and helps set you on your way then guests are usually more than happy to help.
And whilst we’re talking about gifts don’t forget that you might want to recognise members of your wedding party with a little token of your appreciation. If you're struggling for inspiration with what to get those guests who had a big part to play in your wedding day, then we are always on hand with plenty of ideas.
H is for… Hotel
Here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we are hotel experts so whether your venue is a hotel or you need to find somewhere else to lay your head on your wedding night the hotel you choose for your wedding night plays a big part in the overall experience of your special day. Of course a comfortable bed, luxurious amenities and top-notch service are important but there are countless other details to consider which can end up having a bigger impact on your wedding day than you might expect. We take everything into consideration so you don’t have to.
I is for… In-laws
Every family is unique and whilst many of us (myself included) are lucky enough to have wonderful in-laws this unfortunately isn’t always the case. The future in-laws are a very important part of your partner’s past and present, and will become an important part of your future, so it is best to try and handle any problems or conflict of ideas or personalities with as much composure and grace as you can. A common theme is in-laws (or indeed your own parents) expecting to have control over certain aspects of your day; from adding extra guests to expecting you to wear an heirloom dress, these sorts of conflicts can make your wedding planning extremely stressful. Here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we are always on hand to help you negotiate even the trickiest of in-laws. One of our top tips for handling unwanted input is to make your in-laws feel included by designating them certain jobs that are easy to carry out so they will feel like they are making their own decisions about things (when really all they are doing is ticking things off the list for you). They will probably be so caught up in their job, they will not have enough time to criticise or comment on other aspects of your wedding planning.
J is for… Jewellery
You may not realise this, but some metals look better with certain dress colours. As a general rule, ivory is best paired with gold since it highlights the creamy tint of the fabric. For a pure white dress, choose accents in silver or platinum or with pearl detailing—gold may clash with brighter white hues. You can have your pick with a diamond-white gown—this barely off-white colour looks amazing with yellow gold, rose gold, silver or pearls. If the dress you chose is already embellished with beadwork, let that dictate the colours of your accessories. For example, if your gown has gold beading, pick a necklace, bracelet or earrings with a gold base. However, also consider matching your metals to your engagement ring and wedding band. Whilst mixing metals may work for some brides depending on your own unique style as a general rule matching your metals will create a more cohesive look.
K is for… Kids
Dreams of a glamourous, adults only affair in a ballroom or a raucous wedding weekend in a chalet can be thwarted by family expectations. However, this is your wedding and your choice so do what suits you and your partner.
If you decide not to have children at your wedding let friends and family know well in advance so that they can arrange a baby-sitter. Hopefully they’ll look forward to a ‘night off’ celebrating your nuptials with you! But also prepare yourselves that some guests may decline if their children aren’t included.
Either way, it’s important to be clear on the save the date and/or invitation whether children are actually invited or not. First of all, when addressing your wedding stationery be very specific – is it simply Mr & Mrs Baker or The Baker Family that you’re inviting? On the invite itself a simple ‘children welcome’ or ‘no children under the age of 10 please’ (or whatever your cut off age is) should suffice. But you could also include a little message popped inside the envelopes with something along the lines of:
As much as we love your little ones, our wedding/wedding venue won’t be suitable for children under 10 and there are no crèche facilities onsite so we kindly request that you leave them at home with a babysitter.
If you do decide to include children in your wedding then we are full of ideas for everything from how to keep children entertained and happy, to the cutest flower girl and ring bearer ensembles and how to navigate the dreaded children’s table dilemma and child friendly food and drink. If you are having a lot of young children at your wedding, you might want to consider hiring crèche facilities run by qualified nannies who can supervise the children throughout the day or during specific parts of the day. Let us help you make your day fun for adults and kids alike. Remember, children can be a LOT of fun at weddings (especially busting their cute little moves on the dancefloor!)
L is for… Lighting
When it comes to wedding design, wedding lighting is undoubtedly one of the most underrated elements. So, we’re here to remind you just how important lighting really is! It sets the overall mood for your wedding and allows you to show off all the pretty details you’ve spent months thinking about. Plus, you’ll want your guests to be able to properly enjoy their food and the dance floor, and you’ll want your photos to be exquisite. You can’t do any of those things with poor or insufficient lighting! If you’re not sure where to start, don’t know what to ask a lighting designer, or just need some inspiration to fit your wedding style, then get in touch.
M is for… Make Up
While some brides prefer to do their own make-up, the majority will rely on a wedding make-up artist for their big day. But with so many out there, there’s almost too much choice and it can be hard to navigate the sea of make-up artists to find the perfect one to suit your taste and what you have in mind for your big day. (Plus, they’ve got to know what they’re doing.) We love matching brides to make-up artists and can also recommend the best products and pre-wedding day beauty routines to help you look your absolute best on your big day.
N is for… Nails
We always recommend gel nails for your wedding day as it won't chip or smudge like a lacquer manicure might. It will also last up to 2 weeks (or even longer in our experience) which means you'll have perfect nails for your wedding day and honeymoon too! It’s also means you can make your wedding day morning a little less hectic by getting your nails done a couple of days before. For brides who want more length but who have weak and brittle nails that break easily we advise using a nail strengthener or a hardener in advance of the big day. When it comes to colour and length it’s really down to what you’re comfortable with and your own unique taste; you don't want to go and get incredibly long extensions the day before if you're not used to them as you'll feel clumsy and awkward... and you certainly don't want to rip your dress! For most brides we recommend aiming for medium-length almond-shaped nails, which look elegant and elongate the fingers. Choose a colour that complements your overall look. Neutral, nude or blush tones on a bride always look clean and elegant and they do not distract from your bouquet or ring but some brides choose a bolder look and that’s amazing too!
O is for… Order of Service
Your wedding invites aren’t the only bit of wedding stationery you’ll need for your big day, and just by getting a little organised you could save money by ordering these all in one go – including your place cards, menus and wedding order of service.
The order of service is the one that confuses a lot of couples; you might not even be sure what one is and if you need an order of service for your wedding day. Simply put, the order of service is a booklet containing a step-by-step outline of how the wedding ceremony will run. It helps your guests know how long the wedding will last and when they need to join in for hymns etc, but there are lots of other things it can include.
Our stationary design service can help you save a lot of money on these wedding essentials. We can guide your design choices and recommend suppliers and design choices which fit with your vision or indeed we can design a bespoke stationary suite that's unique to you and your wedding. One of the great benefits of choosing this route is that you can tailor your package to exactly the items you want and need. (Sometimes suites available from major retailers won't include every item you want i.e. they might not have save the dates or menu cards available in the same design.) There is also the choice to choose our print at home option which can save you a lot of money compared to buying ready made designs. We can also design your wedding website with RSVP facility which is another great money saver. For more information on our design services please get in touch.
P is for… Photos
Your wedding photos are the memories that you’ll treasure forever, long after the day itself has passed you’ll be able to look back on your big day so finding a the right photographer (and videographer) is so important. It could be one of the hardest decisions you make in the whole wedding planning process. It could certainly be one of the most expensive. There are hundreds of wedding photographers out there so how on earth do you pick the right one for you? That’s where we are here to help. It really comes down to four important factors; style, personality, experience and budget. All of which we’ll guide you through step by step. We’ll contact photographers on your behalf to check availability and get the latest costings for you, saving you valuable time in the wedding planning process. We pride ourselves on matching clients with the right photographers so that no matter your style you’ll have wedding photos you’ll treasure forever.
We also recommend thinking of other fun ways to gather photos from your big day aside from your professional photos. From hashtags and apps to Polaroids and disposable cameras we can help you arrange all of this. It’s a great way of getting to see all your guests photos and gives you a more immediate chance to relive your wedding day whilst you wait for your professional photos to arrive.
Q is for… Quality
This sentiment pretty much goes for every aspect of your wedding. Of course, some things are more important than others but as a general rule investing in quality will make your day that much more special. For most clients you won’t have the budget to have the best of the best of everything so it’s about prioritising where is most important for you to spend your money; for foodies having exquisite cuisine is a must, for music lovers the best bands and DJs, and for travel lovers you might want to allocate more money for your honeymoon. Here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we can help you prioritise how to make the most of your budget. Regardless of your unique set of priorities we will only match you with quality suppliers.
R is for… Rings
Ceremonies differ, vows are often unique, but the tradition of the wedding band has survived through the ages and is a traditional symbol of eternal love in many cultures and religions. These days the traditional simple gold wedding band isn’t the only choice as wedding rings comein many different designs, widths, weights, shapes and sizes, the trick is choosing the one stunning enough for you to adore for a life time. And that comes down to your personal choice. Here at Honeymoon Forever we make it our mission to help you find the best wedding rings possible.
S is for… Seating Plan
For anything larger than a small, informal reception, a wedding seating plan is likely to make a significant difference to the success of your reception. A wedding seating plan will almost certainly help things run more smoothly.
Guests are saved from the mad panic of trying to find a seat on a table with their friends/family, and you can place people where they'll be happiest! The wedding meal may last for 2-3 hours and is a significant part of the day. If your guests are sitting with people they get along with, it will make a big difference to their enjoyment of the day.
Here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we can design your seating plan for you in a style that reflects your unique theme, we can even help you come up with your table names.
T is for… Timetable
The key to a wedding reception timeline that runs smoothly is planning ahead. Breaking down your entire wedding day timeline helps you stay organised and on-track when the day arrives. The more detailed you can make the plan, the better. Every wedding is unique and here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we are experts in effective and realistic planning that doesn’t leave you feeling rushed. (So many brides and grooms underestimate the time it takes to get ready on your big day and forget to allow a bit of time for guests to get stuck in traffic etc.) Let us take that stress away from you! We also love to create personalised wedding day timelines to display on your big day so your guests know what is happening and when.
U is for… Unique
Every couple is unique and that’s why our services are totally bespoke. We always aim to make every aspect of your wedding a true reflection of who you are as a couple. We love incorporating personals quirks, interest and style into your big day. It’s not for every couple but we love it when couples embrace the uniqueness of their wedding party too, for instance letting the bridesmaids choose their own outfits within your colour scheme is a lovely way to let their individual personalities and style shine through.
V is for… Venue
Finding the perfect wedding venue is likely to be at the top of any newly engaged couple's list. With the venue playing a vital role in the success of your day, it’s the big decision you really need to get right. And there really is so much choice!
Just like viewing a new property it is easy to become overexcited and fall in love with a place without checking the venue can cater to your requirements. The venue you pick will determine the number of guests you can invite, your decor, your vendors, your wedding date and have a big impact on your wedding budget, so it's important to get it right!
Here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we pride ourselves on matching couples with their perfect venue. We provide all couples with our 40 point checklist which covers everything you might forget to ask when viewing a venue. And we especially love touring venues with our clients.
W is for… Wine
Unless you’re having a dry wedding chances are you’ll be serving wine at some point during your day. We adore working with couples and their caterers to choose the perfect wines. Choosing the perfect wine for your reception is influenced heavily by your personal taste. So while you may think the season or menu always informs what’s in your glass, we’re happy to report that whether you love reds, whites or rosés, all three are always in style. We can help with everything from temperature and menu pairings to the much-debated question of how many bottles to buy. Our top tip? You should always choose varietals you and your fiancé enjoy, since wine can actually say something about you—even better if it's part of your love story. (And there’s a good chance you’ll have a few bottles left over to enjoy after your big day!)
X is for… Xtra…
Having a little extra everything is always a good idea on your big day, from spare invitations and other stationary to a little more wine then you might need, we think it’s better safe than sorry. Our number one thing to have extra of? A spare shirt for your groom – so he can still look sharp after dinner if he gets over-excited with the red wine!
Y is for… You & Your Spouse
A lot of couples feel a lot of pressure to do their big day a certain way, whether that comes from family, friends or even just society/the wedding industry it can become overwhelming and make your wedding planning experience less than enjoyable. Here at HONEYMOONFOREVER we always like to remind couples that ultimately this day is just about you and your spouse, as long as you both are happy and married at the end of the day then the day was a success. We believe that wedding planning should be an enjoyable experience and that’s why we love to step in and take that stress away from you, it’s also why we offer a completely bespoke service, tailored to exactly the help you need and want on your big day. Not every couple needs or wants everything we can offer and that’s totally fine. So whether you want to plan an intimate elopement or a grand elaborate wedding we are here to make your dreams come true.
Z is for… Zzzz
Sleep is so under-rated! For your appearance and for your mental wellbeing try to make sure you are getting plenty of sleep in the run up to your wedding. This can be easier said than done but we can recommend all the best remedies to help you get your beauty sleep from lavender pillow sprays to ASMR videos we know all the best insomnia cures!
Hope you enjoyed our A-Z of weddings!