Wedding Planning: Finding the Right Wedding Photographer

You’re just engaged and on TOP of the WORLD. You’re drifting on Cloud 9 blissfully then like a stampede of oncoming bulls your thoughts turn to the Wedding and the inevitability of one word: Planning. Haven’t we heard some horror stories, disasters and triumphs here? The two words ‘Wedding Planning’ can strike fear into any Bride organizing a wedding on her own, because as we all know the Groom does two parts of no-thing to contribute! As a Wedding Photographer in Sydney Australia I wanted to give you some Insights I’ve learned about one of the biggest tick-boxes in wedding preparation – the Photographer. Follow these steps to guarantee you commission a genuine, client focused team, because remember they’re heavily involved with you on the BIGGEST day of your life!

Here we go:

·  Write your Budget down – stick it on your fiancés forehead

·  Research, Research, Research and Enquire, Enquire, Enquire: Forums, Blogs, Word of Mouth, more Blogs

·  Shortlist and meet for Coffee (or Chai). Ask them about creative ideas and experiences – curveball!

·  Talk Price: Nothing is set in trade so go for it

·  Trust your ‘Gut’

The simple truth is the marketplace is flooded with Wedding Photographers and they’re all talented. The differentiator you need to rely on is Client Service and a genuine connection with a real person that YOU feel comfort in, ask yourself the question – Would you let this person come to Sunday Dinner? There’s your answer.

Interfaith Wedding Ceremonies

Now that you’ve found the love of your life, had a really fun engagement, and you’re ready to get married, there’s just one hitch (no pun intended) in your plan: he’s a devout Scientologist and you’re a Rastafarian. Or she’s Jewish and you’re Christian Scientist. With each of your religious backgrounds comes a host of wedding traditions. How can you have a ceremony that respects each of your faiths without slighting either one? It’s a sticky question, but here are some things to consider.

Have a secular ceremony

If each of you has a faith that’s important to you, but not so important that you won’t marry outside the faith, maybe your wedding ceremony should just be a celebration of the love you two have for each other. There’s no need to bring two or more deities into the mix if you don’t have to. Granted, some traditions are so strong, and some families of the wedding couple so adamant, that this won’t be an option. For those who can pull off a secular ceremony, though, it’s well worth considering.

Take extra time to plan

You can have a whirlwind engagement and a quick wedding, or you can have a wedding that truly respects both of your faiths. We recommend a longer engagement if you want to have the latter. Spend time with each of your families, really get to know each other as people, and discuss the traditions each family has. Find out what’s most important for all involved and why. That’ll help you start to put together the ceremony.

Get some background

Even if you’re not planning on converting to your partner’s faith, it’s a good idea to learn as much as you can about each other’s spiritual leanings. Talk to his rabbi or her shaman, find out the history and core beliefs of the religion. It will help plan the ceremony and it will give you more insight into your partner.

Find the right officiant, or two

Finding a rabbi who will marry a Jewish groom to an atheist bride can be tricky. So can finding a priest willing to marry a Catholic to a Wiccan. You’ll have to interview officiants to determine their comfort level with interfaith weddings. We recommend having two officiants, if you can, one of each faith. That way they can be given equal time during the ceremony.

Respect both faiths and both families

If you’re going to meld the traditions of both faiths into a single ceremony, make sure they get equal time. You can also help educate the extended family and your guests by including information about the wedding traditions of both faiths in your program. Don’t leave Aunt Petunia in the dark about the Jewish customs, and make sure his Uncle Moshe understands why you’re drinking grape juice out of a big golden cup.

Personalize the proceedings

At the end of the day, the ceremony is as much about you and your spouse as it is about your faiths. So make sure whatever traditions you choose to include, you don’t lose sight of what makes you special as a couple. Also, it’s a great idea to incorporate small things that all faiths can respect. This can be anything from using some cheap wedding sparklers at the end of the ceremony to lighting a unity candle to symbolize your new life together. The name of the game is to do things that don’t have any negative connotations to another religion and you can still have a beautiful ceremony without stepping on anyone’s toes.

Interfaith weddings can be tricky to negotiate, but when they’re done well, they can be enlightening, life-affirming events for all involved. Keep our tips in mind, and you’re sure to have a blessed union.

6 Great Wedding Balloon Decoration Ideas

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Balloons have always made people feel joyous, whimsical, and absolutely fun. It is a no-brainer that balloons are a perfect fit for wedding decorations of the modern times. Not only are they budget-friendly, balloons are also easy to recycle and clean up will never be a problem. They are the heaven-sent answer to brides that are allergic to flowers or pollens and they are never out of season.

With all the great rave when it comes to wedding balloons, here are a few great wedding balloon decoration ideas that are sure to be a great hit with the guests, as well as the couple’s wedding budget.

Highlight the Focal Point with a Balloon Arch

Have a long bridal party head table and worrying on how to decorate without making it too crowded? A balloon arch hanged over the table’s length is a great way to style the space while still allowing the bridal party to easily move in and out of their seats during speeches or when dancing. Mix in the right pop of color or accentuate the arch with the theme color of the wedding and make the table a standout focal point of the entire venue.

Line up the Aisle with Floating Giants

As a great substitute for flowers when opting to save on the decorations, use giant round balloons and tie them up to the pews or aisle seats. Make sure to lengthen the strings so that the other guests at the back can still have a clear view of the altar during the exchanging of vows.

Spell them out and proud

A big hit this season is the giant metallic letter balloons that bring in tons of creativity with them. Spell out the bride and the groom’s names or choose to have their initials for a more simple twist. Also, the couple can pick out a word that definitely stands out for them, like “forever”, “finally”, “I do”, and even “love” and have that spelled out as a backdrop for the photo booth or the dessert buffet table.

Make a Bold Statement Balloon Piece

Using different colors, sizes, and shapes of balloons, fill up an entire wall and have it as a backdrop for the altar. Maximize the design further and transport the balloon wall to the reception venue. Re-use it as a backdrop for the cake table or even part of the photo booth display – the possibilities are endless.

centrepiece-2Towering Table Centerpieces with Big Round Balloons

Tie 3 or 5 round balloons together and anchor it to a vase holding the table number for a more whimsical approach. Deck the arrangement up with metallic strings or vibrant ribbons to add in an extra touch of color.

Transform the Dance Floor into a Dreamy Wonderland

Go all out and fill the dance floor ceiling with floating helium-filled balloons. Guests will surely be stunned at how festive and classy the design feels and the balloons will never interfere with all the dancing and the merry-making. With the right lights and colors, this dreamy balloon ceiling will look amazing on photos as part of the newlyweds’ first dance.

A single balloon may seem too simple for a wedding party, but when clustered together with a dozen other more balloons it may just turn a small gathering into a memorable occasion.

Written by Catherine Harvey of Ideaz, West Yorkshire’s wedding balloon specialists with over 12 years’ experience at creating beautiful wedding décor.

Tips for Choosing the Best Photographer for Your Wedding

If you are like most brides, you have probably been planning your wedding since you were just a little girl. But, in all of that time, I bet you never gave much thought to the MOST IMPORTANT item when planning your wedding – choosing the best photographer.

wedding photographer ct

Why Is Choosing the Best Photographer the Most Important Item on Your List?

Choosing the best photographer is the greatest gift you can give to yourself and your loved ones for generations to come. It is so valuable that it is worth giving it top priority when it comes to wedding expenditures.   Kara Wahlgren, blogger at knerdy.com and photographer at kiwiphotostudio.com, said:

“I planned my wedding on a shoestring budget, so I wore a $400 wedding gown in order to afford my first-choice photographer.”  

Keep in mind that the best CT wedding photographers are usually booked as much as year in advance, so you can never start narrowing your search too early. Here is a list of what to do, and not to do:

  1. Choose your photographic style: Photographers have styles too. Here are the possible choices: Portraiture (traditional), Documentary (candid and spontaneous), Fine Art (documentary with more dramatic and artistic license), Edgy-Bold (fine art but outside-the-box, tilted angles and unconventional framing).
  2. Review potential photographers’ websites and blogs: This is a great place to start or click here if you’re looking for the best wedding photographer CT
  3. Choose about 3-5 photographers you like and set up face-to-face interviews: Your photographer will be glued to you on the day of your wedding, so make sure that you feel totally comfortable with him or her.
  4. Carefully view each photographer’s wedding albums and portfolio of photos: If the photo studio is large, it may have more than one photographer. Make sure you know who took the photos and if that photographer will be yours on your wedding day. Also, will there be assistants, who will they be and what will their assignments be? Who is the backup photographer for your main photographer?
  5. Know exactly what your photo package covers: Don’t get surprised by extras that you may not want, or extras that you add on, by not discussing them before you sign a contract.
  6. Cover who will own the rights to your photos and what your rights are: Most professional photographers retain the rights to their work. This may limit your copy rights.
  7. Check post-production details: When will you receive proofs and will they be high or low resolution? Ask about touch-ups. Will they be done prior to the proof stage or after?

When choosing the best photographer for your wedding, there are two things that you must keep in mind:

  • Choose a photographer who specializes in weddings. No matter how good a photographer is, wedding photography is a specialty.
  • Never choose a friend or relative. They are too personally involved and may miss some of your most precious moments. You want a photographer who will be focused that day.

If you are as particular about choosing the best photographer for your wedding as you are about choosing your wedding gown, you will have a true heirloom to leave to your family for generations to come.

A Guide to the Ultimate Hipster Wedding

Since the dawn of suburbia, recent generations have been doomed to embrace the hipster culture. There are many ways that people define being a hipster ranging from wearing pastel colored fedoras to hating any type of music that most other people would agree is good. However, there is actually quite a lot of diversity among hipsters and they also follow many of the same traditions that the rest of America does. For instance, when two hipsters fall in love, they go through the same process of getting engaged and having a wedding that almost everyone else on the planet does. With that said, most hipsters don’t follow the normal wedding traditions that have been set forth by previous generations and enjoy putting their own spin on things. As a hipster, I have put together the ultimate guide to planning your wedding in true millennial style.

Wedding Rings

Traditionally, a gentleman would give his gal a nice diamond band that will interlock with another wedding band when the big day finally arrives. Since hipsters aren’t so trite and archaic in their practices, many couples seek out and find creative alternatives for their wedding rings. This can be anything from hand-forged rings purchased at your local renaissance fair to rings that you make yourself from duct tape or even wood. One of the most popular choices available commercially are rings that are made from recycled milk jugs because of the low carbon footprint, and I’ve even seen digital rings that are exchanged via smartphones. Whatever it is that makes your ring exchange uniquely yours, embrace it.

Wedding Theme

Historically, many hipsters are also what many people would consider nerds. I myself have a bad addiction to science fiction and fantasy such as Star Wars, Star Trek, and the Lord of the Rings trilogy. For our wedding, we’re actually planning a Game of Thrones theme complete with costumes, gaudy goblets for wine, and of course large turkey drumsticks. It may not be for everyone, but it will be a hipster wedding fit for a Targaryen.

Wedding Decorations

Depending on your wedding theme, your wedding decorations are going to vary quite a bit based on personal taste. One of the most important things to remember is that you need to have as many DIY projects throughout your wedding as possible, and also you should try to keep a minimalist attitude. The benchmark you should use when deciding if an item should be included in your wedding decorations is whether or not it will improve your guest’s experience or if it is purely aesthetic. You’re still going to want to have sparklers for your wedding reception but hanging ribbons or cray paper from the ceiling is both a waste of time and completely wasteful.

Replacing the Photographer

Since many hipsters love to embrace new technology, replacing your wedding photographer with your guest’s smartphone cameras is a popular choice. Sharing photos with all of the guests couldn’t be easier with the aid of any one of a hundred different photo sharing apps that are completely free, plus you can save a boatload of cash by cutting the expense from your wedding budget. Many hipsters will still decide to hire a professional, but in my opinion that goes against everything that makes us hipster unique from the rest of the world.

Wedding Dress Shopping Tips

wedding dress shopping

Every bride wants to make a statement on their wedding day, regardless of their budget. The important thing to keep in mind is that even if you feel you have the perfect wedding dress in mind (many women have dreamed about their wedding dress for years), there are a lot of additional bridal gown aspects to consider. We’ve put together a list of tips that will help your wedding dress shopping experience a successful one.

Shop Early
First and foremost, shop early, especially if you plan on having the dress made or want to get married during the popular wedding months (June and September). If possible, start shopping for your wedding dress 8 to 12 months prior to your wedding day, giving yourself plenty of time to order your dress and get any necessary fittings. If you wait until the last minute to shop, you won’t have the time to be flexible with your choices and definitely won’t be able to have your dress custom made.

Ask for Recommendation
There’s nothing like a good recommendation, no matter what you’re considering buying but this is particularly helpful when it comes to shopping for a wedding dress. Whether you’re looking for a great bridal salon, an online retail store or even a bridal consignment store, word of mouth referrals are always helpful. If you can’t get a referral, do some research online, reading third party reviews, both positive and negative.

Brides on a Budget
For brides to be on a budget, trunk shows and bridal outlets are great options for shopping for a wedding dress. Consider checking out bridal outlets as well because they stock a wide variety of bridal gowns that are out of season but still fashionable. You should also look at wedding dresses created by designers that are lesser known but still extremely talented. Another consideration is checking out the consignment wedding gown shops. You can save a lot of money by purchasing a pre-owned wedding dress and they’re basically like new – after all they’re usually only worn once unless they were passed down. This is a great way to find a vintage dress if that’s what appeals to you.

Before You Start Shopping
Before you start shopping, take the time to educate yourself about bridal gown terminology. Find out all you can about the different parts of bridal dresses, including necklines, sleeve designs, train styles and have a good idea about the available overall shapes like sheath, A-line dresses, trumpet or mermaid, just to name a few.. You’ll also want to have an idea of the style dress you want, options like formal “princess” style dresses, something more casual for a beachside wedding or perhaps something “vintage”. To help decide, pick up some bridal magazines or browse through online wedding or social media sites like Pinterest to get some ideas before you hit the stores. Come prepared with style numbers, designer names, magazine tear outs or have your smartphone ready with pictures and your favorite websites at easy access. The farther you are along the decision making process the easier it will be to make the right choice.