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A Homespun Wedding – Planning Tools

This is it this is the year of my wedding. It will be a wedding in a run down shabby chic castle called Featherstone in Northumberland that has a rich history including the ghosts of a previous wedding party, and now plays host to many groups from girl guides to psy-trance parties and my future nuptials.

I will be, (with a little help from my friends) doing most things required for a wedding myself such as making the decorations, catering so on and so forth. Why I am setting myself such a task I hear you say. Well my reasons are threefold.
  1. Budget, yes the budget is tight but I also want to prove that you can still have a breathtaking wedding without spending a small fortune and getting into debt.
  2. I like to make things and do things for myself it gives me an overwhelming sense of satisfaction.
  3. This one is top secret so lets keep it between me and you, I’m a bit of a control freak.
I have 7 months to pull this off I am feeling quietly confident that I will be able to achieve the look and feel that I want in this time, lets see how long this confidence lasts. Note to self don’t get stressed, it takes up far too much time and a stressed out bride is such a wedding cliche.

The key to this is going to be in the planning and making decisions early on. I am an artist and designer so I am used to the concept of using a sketchbook to document my thoughts and ideas. Keeping a visual notebook is key to life in my opinion I am addicted to visual note taking – good job really considering my chosen career path! 

When you start to think about planning your wedding it is easy to be seduced by the number of pretty things and ideas available to you. To prevent yourself becoming overwhelmed make a wedding scrapbook. It is a great way for you to decide what things you really like, once you start collecting images you will start to see your theme.

I decided to keep my scrapbook loose leaf in a folder. This is a good option as you can insert new pages easily and spread them out so that you can view things next to each other. 

Collect pictures of everything you like, hair, make up, colour combinations and remember these do not have to be images from bridal magazines.

photograph styles that I like
I am particularly nervous about the photographs. These are going to be mementos that are with us for the rest of our days so I want to be happy looking at them. Take time choosing your photographer, make sure you feel comfortable with them and can sit and chat with them about what feel you want for the day. Visual tools help and I have collected images of photo styles that I like to give my photographer an idea of what I want to achieve.

pictures that illustrate the theme  
I want the wedding to have a tea party feel to it. It will be indoors but I want to achieve the same casual and relaxed feeling an outdoor garden party wedding can offer. My greatest wish is for everybody to feel comfortable. A stunning wedding without feeling stuffy or over orchestrated. The truth is any huge event has to be orchestrated so it is no easy task to organise everything whilst still keeping it laid back. One way I intend to do this is by how the day is presented, remember people respond to visual cues.

You don’t have to be an artist to make visual notes as evidenced by my sketches of the canape table pictured above and below. I use the phrase visual notes for a reason, don’t think of it a masterpiece, you wouldn’t write an essay in place of bullet points! The notes are for you, they keep you focused on what you have decided, stop you getting sidetracked by every new thing you see. As I am doing the catering myself I have kept recipes in my scrapbook, however this is a good idea even if you are hiring a caterer. It will give you and your caterer a starting point when for planning your menu.

Happy wedding planning and scrap booking!

January 13, 2011