Wedding planning with your partner

I find there is generally 2 scenarios - the couple where 1 person is more into the planning and details than the other, or the couple that argue and butt heads about every detail. Lets face it, it is really difficult to plan a wedding alone even with the help of your friends and family. It's important to make sure that your big day reflects both of you as a couple and one person doesn't feel like they could just turn up in a suit or dress and 'just slot in'. In the cases where 1 person is more into the detail than the other, just make sure you've run everything past them; i'm sure they'll nod their head lovingly (even if they have no idea what's going on).

For those that butt heads on every detail, it's completely NORMAL.  The best thing to do is give each other different areas to focus on then each of you have different areas to organise, simply consulting the other along the way when you have some options. When we got married we were definitely in the 'butt heads' zone, each of us really passionate about each area of the wedding. So we agreed that Rich would focus on the food and alcohol which gave him enough to keep him occupied and left me free to go wild on the decor and all the other details and logistics. That way there was far less (but still some) arguments. I don't believe any couple that didn't argue at all when planning their wedding (guest list anyone??), but you have to compromise and understand that it's your partners big day too and they also deserve whatever they want.

I read this a lot but I think in the end, it's important to think about the bigger picture and remember the reason why you're getting married. Yes, planning a wedding is stressful no matter how big or small but remember that the marriage itself is the most important thing so don't sweat the 'small' stuff and enjoy it!

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L&R

Your wedding day emergency kit

I want to say from the off that the most important thing about the wedding day emergency kit is that you should not be the one not carrying it! Nonetheless these are the essential items I would recommend having before you head out for your big day. Tissues - Every bride/groom handles the wedding day differently, some hold it together others are genuinely overwhelmed with emotion at the sight of so many family and friends. So it's perfectly normal if there are a few tears (I can still hear my make up artist sister saying 'if you need to shed a tear, tilt your head back...save the make up!!') however it's always handy to have a couple of kleenex to hand just in case you get a few runners!

Make up - Potential tears? Sweats? Genuine wear and tear throughout the day? It's definitely handy to have any essential items of make up that you may need during the day with one of your bridesmaids; eyeliner, bronzer, lipstick of choice (definitely a must if you have gone for a bold colour) just so you can have a touch up and feel radiant for the whole day...though if you're having such an amazing time that you forget to touch up, I won't blame you for that either.

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Perfume - It's usually a long day so as much as you will have prepared a liberal dousing before you head out the door, you should pick up a mini perfume atomiser to savour a bit of your wedding day scent, particularly useful at regular intervals like just before the reception drinks post wedding and before the night time festivities kick off; you'll be smelling sweet all day and it will really help solidify the scent memory - I even blogged about the nostalgia surrounding smells and how they link back to memories, check that out here

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Plasters - You are wearing a pair of shoes you probably haven't worn for more than 15 mins at a time (maybe longer if you have tried to break them in whilst striking the balance of keeping them looking pristine brand new) it's a good idea to have a variety of plasters to hand just in case after an hour you begin to regret the decision of those being 'the one'. Even flats and sandals can lull you into a false sense of security of being comfortable...definitely better to be safe than sorry on this one! I know it's common to throw 3 sheets to the wind by the evening reception and go foot loose and fancy free sans shoes, but this tip might be helpful until that point!

What emergency kit supplies did you have that would you suggest for other brides?

L+R

 

Join the conversation!

We have some very exciting news! Lula&Rye are joining forces with the gorgeous Harry Makes It Up, (who is also my sister!) on a webinar next weekend on my favourite subject – WEDDINGS. Harry herself only just got wed a couple of weeks ago and it got her thinking about brides and the cost of paying to have their make-up done for the big day. We’ll be talking about this and she has asked me to come along and share some of my own tips with you! I’ll be covering a few DIY decoration ideas and also talking about some venue ideas.

This will be a great opportunity for any one wedding planning to get some really practical advice about venues, decorations, make up and all most importantly it’s all budget friendly…what’s not to love!

It’s going to be so much fun, so come hang out with us on sunday 26th June 6pm GMT! For all the details and to reserve your spot CLICK HERE. We'll be doing a live Q&A and I'll be doing a special offer on our services for anyone joining us. See you there!

L&R

 

The most important budget item...the Photographer

No matter the wedding budget, big or small, one of the most difficult things is how to divide it up. There are the obvious things like the venue which will take up a large portion of the cost then there are areas where you can save; DIY decor for example, changing the type of flower you're using (see our tips on this). At Lula&Rye you know we love a DIY wedding however there is one thing that I would suggest you never scrimp on...the photographer. Of course you have the memories of the day and you’ll feel so proud of all the things you pull together and all the DIYs that you put so much love and attention to however the photographs are the one tangible memory that will take you back to that moment and you want that to be beautiful. For that reason alone, this is one area where you should not be looking to save money. I promise this is a cost that you won’t regret! Importantly, do your research. Look through blogs and find styles that you love, photographers will often be willing to travel as long as you pay their expenses so don't let their location put you off. It's also important that you get on with the photographer, as they are capturing such a special day in your life you need to have a great connection and feel comfortable around them.

There are so many amazing wedding photographers out there which makes the decision even harder but it’s important to find someone whose style you adore and that will ensure you get the shots that you want.

Here are a few of my faves recently...

Benjamin Wheeler Wedding Photography

Benjamin Wheeler Photography

Benjamin Wheeler Photography

Benjamin Wheeler Photography

Sophie Richardson Photography

Sophie Richardson

Sophie Richardson

Sophie Richardson  Sophie Richardson

Eva Photography

Eva Photography

Eva Photography

Eva Photography

Eva Photography

...You're welcome.

L+R

 

Be my Guest!

Following on from our blog post recently about welcoming your out of town guests and being a great host, this doesn't need to stop there, there are little things you can prepare for your guests to make them feel super special during your wedding festivities, they might even benefit you too! Here is a list of my favourites...

Flip flops for party feet - ladies that are partial to an uncomfortable shoe and all night dance floor session, this is for you! Sometimes you really want to get rid of those shoes but the alternative is to end up with blackened feet at the end of the night...alternatively pop a basket of flip flops in different sizes in the ladies rest rooms or on the dance floor

http-::rusticweddingchic.com:15-insanely-cute-wedding-ideas-you-will-want-to-steal

Toiletries for women in the restrooms - this follows a similar theme to the wedding day emergency kit but for guests; think perfume/tissues/deodorant/plasters/grips/hair bobbles - I might be going a bit above board here but your guests will massively appreciate this! I found this hilarious list online of dos and don'ts for the rest rooms

http-::www.weddingpartyapp.com:blog:2014:08:25:pamper-wedding-guests-diy-bathroom-essentials-basket:

Umbrellas - I think this only really applies to the great British wedding, where even booking a wedding during the summer months could result in the rain pouring down. Keep your guests and their hair dos dry with a selection of umbrellas, this is mainly if you're travelling to separate venues for the wedding and wedding reception

http-::www.inkedweddings.com:25-unique-ways-to-honor-deceased-loved-ones-at-your-wedding:

Heel protectors - These are such a saviour and something you would probably never think to have but for anyone having a wedding that involves gardens/fields/grass these are a must. The ladies (and their shoes) will thank you A LOT

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Blankets - Perfect if you have any outside seating areas, people will want to mill around during the evening reception and a nice basket of blankets will be great to keep your guests warm

http-::www.buzzfeed.com:mallorymcinnis:here-comes-the-malm

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Being the perfect host

As much as your family and friends will be absolutely over the moon they got the invite to join you in celebrating your big day, they are usually spending their own money to be there whether it be on a hotel, new outfit or travel. As the hosts of your wedding day/weekend/holiday, whatever it may be it's nice to make your guests feel special and welcomed especially if they've travelled a long way to be there. If you are hosting a wedding in a location which people are travelling to or you head off to another country, how about creating a 'Welcome Pack' for your guests - now you don't want to blow additional £££ on the wedding budget but even going to the effort of printing off a map of the place and/or schedule for your guests and including some sweets for them to arrive to could be a really nice touch.

These are my favourite ideas...

http-::www.asignaturewelcome.com:

http-::www.brides.com:wedding-ideas:2015:08:creative-wedding-welcome-bag-ideas#slide=1

http-::www.intimateweddings.com:blog:10-creative-ways-welcome-guests:

http-::www.stylemepretty.com:gallery:picture:1685063

https-::www.etsy.com:listing:206324261:set-of-6-out-of-town-guest-box-wedding?utm_source=Pinterest&utm_medium=PageTools&utm_campaign=Share

http-::www.jennalamevents.com:blog:?p=62

....failing that, I'm sure a kit kat and a lucozade would do to help curb the wedding hangover!

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The New Wedding Planner

When I think about how the traditional wedding planner role has changed over the years, I can't help but think about the impact of digital. Never before have we had so much access to content; how tos, hints and tips, inspiration that gives us the tools and more importantly the confidence to make us feel like we can go it alone, that feeling that you can plan and style your own wedding, and it can actually look pretty amazing too. If you look at blogs like Love My Dress and Rock My Wedding, there are pages full of beautiful weddings and most of them contain some sort of element of DIY...all hail the DIY wedding and the new wedding planner mastermind behind it...YOU. Don't get me wrong, if you had the money I can imagine having a wedding planner, someone to do the groundwork and shortlist everything for you, make the bookings and take away the stress of wedding planning would be incredible! Especially if you have a stressful job or busy family life.

But what happens if the wedding budget is finite and there just isn't room for someone to do that all for you? There are ways you can make it work for you, have all the fun of planning it yourself but you won't have to worry about a thing on the big day. Here are a few of our favourite ideas:

When you're planning, assign out tasks to the groom or certain family members and/or wedding party (my bet is that they would love planning food, drinks and/or music)

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Rope in your friends to help - if you have a relaxed morning before the big day, get your girls or guys to come over and lend a hand; lay out favours or flowers...it's kinda what they're there for!

http-::www.deerpearlflowers.com:40-creative-wedding-escort-cards-ideas:

Plan all the big day yourself but get a professional to come in and set up everything on the morning of the wedding - put your feet up, relax an feel happy that you've paid a fraction of the cost for someone to come in and help when it's most important - check out our set up service where we can help achieve exactly this!

http-::www.harpersbazaar.co.uk:travel:travel-guides:best-wedding-destinations-venues-places-uk

I relish in the times when people want to do it themselves, I don't think there is anything more satisfying on the day seeing your visions come to life but use these helpful hints to make your wedding planning fun and not too stressful.

L+R

 

Need a venue? How about one of these London gems?

So you're engaged! You've got the ideal date in mind, maybe the type of wedding you want; the hard part comes when you actually need to find the venue. Tricky things to figure out...how far away is it? How much does it cost? How many people will it fit inside...the list goes on and are all really important questions to ask when you're thinking about the type of day you want and who you want there. At Lula & Rye, you know we love blank canvas venues like village halls and marquees but over the last few months we have been introduced to some amazing venues right in the heart of Central London that have so much to offer and would make an incredible backdrop for your big day. On a regular Monday to Friday they are galleries, bars, restaurants but come the weekend, these places turn into hives of wedding activity and each are so amazing and unique I just had to share them!

If you're looking for something a little different in Central London, have a look at these beauties...

Happy venue hunting!

The Asylum, Peckham

The Asylum

The Asylum

The Asylum

06 St Chads Place, Kings Cross

06 St Chads Place

06 St Chads Place

06 St Chads Place

The Pump House, Battersea

Battersea Pump House

Battersea Pump House

Battersea Pump House

East5, Clapton

East5

East5

East5

Lumiere, Southwark

Lumiere

Lumiere

Lumiere

Bistrotheque, Bethnal Green

Bistrotheque

Bistrotheque

Bistrotheque

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If you're engaged...CONGRATULATIONS!

Firstly, a big congratulations if you got engaged over the Christmas period! It is without a doubt one of the most exciting, stressful, whirlwind periods in your life but all I can say is soak it in and enjoy every second, no matter how big or small the wedding. I would be surprised if you don’t argue with your partner the most you ever have during decision making processes (I did!) but let it go, compromise and make sure your partner also has the big day they envisioned too. If like me your wedding is something you have thought about for a long time try to understand that the big day is for both of you and they deserve their say too….

Enjoy this time to be engaged, have drinks and celebrate with all your friends and family as it’s a really special time!

When you start thinking about wedding planning the possibilities really are endless, even if you’re on a budget, that dream wedding can be a reality. Now it is so easy to create the wedding of your dreams with loads of DIY shortcuts and calling in favours from friends. The best place to start is probably the budget as it’s easy to get carried away with venues and catering so if you set a figure in mind you know instantly what sort of range you are looking at.

Use Lula & Rye as a planning tool; we have loads of blog posts for the savvy, creative couple with great money saving tips, DIYs and ideas to make your big day wonderful. We have a section of styled shoots, real weddings and other fun stuff on our website for inspiration and if you need more help for the day itself, have a look at the props we have on offer to help make your day just a bit more magical, we love working with couples to create a vision for their perfect day. There’s no job too big!

Most importantly, HAVE FUN! This really is the most amazing time for you and your partner and whatever you do the day will be perfect, so enjoy the madness on the run up to it….

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L+R

 

DIY How to: Paper pom poms

If you are looking for an inexpensive way to decorate your venue then why not have a go at these little lovelies! A paper pom pom is such a simple thing to make, but grouped together they look so pretty and can really transform a venue! They also look great in a variety of different colour combinations so you can go classic with white and peaches  or fully matching a colour theme that runs through your day!

I've added a step by step guide below (just 4 simple steps!!), we used white but could easily be tailored to your colour theme and you can also do any size you want....

1. Layer 8 sheets of tissue paper on top of each other, concertina the sheets together (fold one way an inch in thickness then repeat the other way and continue with the rest of the sheet)

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2. Lay your pipe cleaner in the middle and tie round and fasten, this will make a loop that you can use to hang later on

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3. Trim each of the edges (pointed or more rounded for a floral effect)

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4. Fan out each side and slowly start pulling up each sheet away from the pack

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For half pom poms (ideal for tables) - pull up all the sheets the same way

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For full pom poms (ideal for hanging) - pull 4 sheets up one way then turn over and pull the remaining 4 sheets the opposite direction

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Top Tip: Use a decent quality tissue paper, the cheaper the paper the easier it will rip when you're pulling the leaves up

Definitely try this one at home, it's super easy and really effective!

L+R

Seeing the signs

If you have a venue spanning a couple of different buildings/fields/areas etc, having signage is such a great way to guide your guests around or  introduce them to a particular section of the wedding and also adds to the decor of the whole day with the popularity of modern calligraphy through the roof these days....take a look at these ideas below for inspiration! There is an amazing array of calligraphy courses these days  if you fancied trying it yourself or Lula&Rye can do this for you! We have a few different signs that would look perfect for your big day!

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Check our Pinterest board for more images like this

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Catering Alternatives - Afternoon Tea

Anyone who's anyone knows that weddings don't come cheap even when you're consciously on a tight budget, particularly if you have a big guest list, quotes for things like catering can be eye watering. Generally the cheapest menu for a 3 course meal is around £24.95, that’s nearly £3,000 just for food alone for 120 before you factor in the alcohol....but now there is a fantastic array of alternatives which mean you can feed your guests in style without breaking the bank! If you think about meals that would sit well on a long summers afternoon, what better than the great British classic Afternoon Tea!

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Adored and popular in our nations capital London, Afternoon Tea has become a complete trend, with fashion inspired and children’s story themed versions to name a few, the idea has now firmly made its way on to the wedding scene and is really popular...what is more exciting is that you can find Afternoon tea catering starting at around £9.95 a head. Winner!

TOP TIP: Competition is TOUGH. All the best caterers get booked up quickly, some a year in advance, so act fast.

If you are having a small gathering and wanted that same afternoon tea vibe with a vintage style, Lula & Rye has a great selection of props that can help add to your day, including crockery and tea pots and lovely hessian table runners to add to that rustic feel

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Drinks stations

Styled weddings have become so popular in recent years with every aspect a chance to show off the couples own personal style or personality. The reception always had a tendency to be that awkward in between bit after the wedding where everyone is generally a bit ancy to get eating (that could just be me)....but not any more! The reception is generally the first chance to introduce your guests to the feel or vibe of the day and also to get them that all important first drink whether it be champagne, prosecco or something more seasonal like pimms or freshly made lemonade. The drinks station is the perfect area to get the tastebuds tingling and also get guests excited about the rest of the day and night unfolding.

Take inspiration from these lovely drinks ideas and check out Lula & Rye for props you can hire to create these lovely destinations, we also have some real wedding pics in our inspiration pages!

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All images taken from our Pinterest pages

These are just a few ideas but such a great way to get yours guests excited about the post wedding drinks and will set the tone for the rest of the day!

L+R

Wedding Skin Preparation

As a woman, I think each of us has an idea of how we want to look and feel on our wedding day. I think it’s important to feel the best possible version of yourself; by that I don’t mean that we need to lose 2 stone or make any drastic changes, it’s just feeling the best you possibly can on such a special day. Looking after your skin is one of the easiest but possibly most important ways to get you looking healthy, fresh and glowing for that wedding day. During my wedding planning, my sister Harry (of Harry Makes It Up Beauty Blog) recently found out that I ashamedly had no skin care routine whatsoever and took my make up off with baby wipes…she was HORRIFIED.

She immediately hooked me up with a few staple items…a cleanser/toner for removing make up, a cleansing milk, a moisturiser and a rich oil to use once a week. These basics should see you through.

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I started my ‘new’ regime in February before my wedding, so 7 months before and I can’t tell you how much of a difference it has made to my skin, it’s definitely softer and more supple, better late than never!

Are you trying anything special out for your wedding day skin?

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Wedding Cake Alternatives – Naked Cakes

A simple cake lends itself beautifully to a rustic/homemade/DIY wedding, you could even give it a go yourself! A huge trend has emerged for these rustic looking beauties and is totally adaptable to your colour and/or flower theme with your chosen flavouring inside. image

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Original pictures here, from Pinterest

Nice flavour combinations include the classic Victoria sponge with vanilla butter cream and Strawberry jam, lemon curd filling with fresh raspberries, or a forest fruits decorated version. Before my wedding I tried to create this myself just to see if it was something I could potentially do for the big day (was a little harder than I thought hence there being no pictures attached). The one thing I would say is make sure you have plenty of mixture to bake as the idea is you cut through the middle of the cake to fill with whatever you choose so you need a big cake to begin with! Alternatively you could always sandwich 2 cakes together.

Are you tempted to make your own wedding cake?

L+R

Lula&Rye's guide to flowers on a budget

The cost of flowers can creep up quickly especially if you are having the wedding and reception in 2 different venues. Even if you have something small planned for a church like pew ends you will easily need a fair few flower arrangements for each end which all adds up to your overall flower budget. Here is a simple way to decorate your venues instead of using flowers...

Transform a wicker heart in to a beautiful and dainty accessory which will perfectly fit with most weddings (similar to buy can be found here). All I did to this was remove the white satin ribbon and replaced with jute twine (just follow how the shop bought one was tied) then added some gypsophila which is one of the cheapest buds you can find!

Et voila! These cost around £2.50 each to make and I think they make a really elegant decoration

We have these to hire out on Lula&Rye if you didn't want to have a go at making them! Have a look here for a few more Pinterest inspirations…

The best thing is, after a church service these can be transported back to the venue to be added to the backs of chairs around the party. They could also be given as presents to your friends and family who may want a piece of the wedding to take home.

A top tip for saving money on your flowers is to look at the type of flowers you're using, is there a cheaper alternative you can use or can you intersperse with a foliage? I've put together a little collage of inspirational images below of bouquets that are still beautiful without breaking the budget

All images from Pinterest

I think you'll agree that the above ideas look just as beautiful as if you had spent a small fortune on floristry, your bank balance will definitely thank you for it

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Decorations

If you are struggling for decoration inspiration and you fancy collecting some of the décor yourself, try and look into bric-a-brac or second hand market stalls. I often go to my local garden centre when I visit family in the midlands and they are the greatest source of inspiration and you can often pick up items at a great price (especially with a little barter as they are generally cash only). You can find everything from napkins/table cloths to glasses to tea pots and even props like milk churns, old suitcases, jukeboxes and wooden crates. These little additions can be added to give character to a blank canvas marquee or tipi, village hall or outdoor wedding; they really help carry the theme throughout the day.

Wooden or tin boxes -Great vases for flowers or central table decorations

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Tea pots -Great to serve your tea in at the end of the wedding breakfast or equally cool for cocktails

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Tablecloths -Add a bit of character to a plain table with a crocheted or lace cloth

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Place mats - Perfect underneath plates or could even be used at intervals along the table in place of table runners

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Crates -Perfect for storing drinks or keeping favours together

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Tea sets -These can be used as a feature on your table as side dishes/tea cups & saucers or great for an afternoon tea wedding breakfast

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Check out your local papers or churches/garden centres on the weekends to see if they have anything like this going on

Have you sourced any of your own props?

L+R

Homemade Favours – Marshmallow Lollies

Quite a playful idea this one, super simple and quick to make but packaged prettily they look fab for little favours and can be enjoyed with coffee /tea after the wedding breakfast. They would even look nice placed in the middle of the table setting. All you need to make them:

Wooden Sticks (As many as you want to make)

228g of Chocolate (I used 2 x bars of Galaxy to make 8 lollies but I had some chocolate left over)

2 Marshmallows per person

Sprinkles of your choice!

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1. Start by adding 2 marshmallows to each stick then when you have the desired amount, leave in the fridge to harden while the chocolate melts

2. Melt the chocolate (I have a little chocolate melting device but you can melt in a bowl over some just boiled water)

3. Pour out your sprinkles liberally on a plate or any flat surface and prepare another small plate with cling film laid over the top

4. Dip each marshmallow lolly into the chocolate to fully coat, there’s no special way to do this, I just dunked then twizzled round a few times to get rid of any excess

5. Once covered in chocolate immediately roll in the sprinkles to make sure it’s fully coated

6. When finished, lay on top of the cling film lined plate

7. Once you have dunk and rolled your lollies, place in the fridge to set and enjoy!

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Are you tempted to make any of your own favours?

L+R

Wedding Perfume

When I was planning my wedding, a friend gave me a really lovely suggestion with regards to Wedding perfume, something that at the time I hadn’t even thought about yet. She said that 5 months before her wedding, on her birthday she received some Chanel No.5 perfume. That afternoon of her birthday, she was flying out to her hen do, so naturally as she was getting ready she used the perfume. When she came back she noticed that she was wearing the perfume for all her wedding related errands by complete coincidence, and most importantly not at work. On the big day, the perfume was part of the morning getting ready ritual. Now whenever she smells the Chanel fragrance, it takes her back to her wedding day and brings back all those amazing memories. I thought this was such a great idea and definitely something I took influence from!

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I did a bit of research to find out why smells can bring back memories and it seems that the part of the body responsible for our sense of smell is closely linked to the parts of the brain which are associated with emotion and memory…so just as the smell of freshly cut grass or the smell of home baking may take you back to your infant summers, your perfume could be the scent that for years to come will remind you of your wedding day….GENIUS.

A COUPLE OF TIPS…

- Don’t wear the scent for work

- Wear for all wedding related activities

- Search for a fresh or classic fragrance which you won’t get bored of over the next few months

- Buy a size big enough so that you don’t run out before the big day! (or if it is a smaller size make sure you can easily get hold of it again)

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Sophia Webster Bridal Collection

Now this is not my usual blog content and is a far cry from my world of props but is wedding related all the same, I just had to write about the new Bridal offering from accessories extraordinaire Sophia Webster. Sophia has re-imagined a selection of seven of her signature shoe styles and her iconic speech bubble clutch in a romantic palette of baby pink, ice blue and ivory. Every pair of shoes in the collection is marked on the soles with Sophia Webster’s signature ‘WIFEY FOR LIFEY’ slogan. I just absolutely love the playfulness of this and is perfect for the bride looking for something a bit different for her big day.

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Sophia said of the collection, "When I first decided to do bridal shoes I was not yet married so thinking about what I would wear for my wedding was a great starting point!  As the collection was being brought to life I imagined all sorts of women slipping into the shoes and feeling like queens for that special day. With that in mind I wanted to use really feminine touches like satin uppers, crystal heels and gem stones, all in delicate tones that would work with classic dresses but add a little flourish.”

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Love love love!

The Sophia Webster Bridal collection is available for purchase at sophiawebster.com and Net-a-porter.com so get going!

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L+R