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*NEW* Let’s Talk Wedding Décor

POSTED 03/17/2018  11:16:56 AM

Of course, a wedding is about more than flowers and décor, but a beautifully decorated venue really completes a wedding. It provides a wow factor and adds a magical quality to any celebration. It’s little wonder, then, that couples are becoming ever more creative with their wedding décor to create something that is personal, unique, and memorable.

Beautiful décor, with a colour scheme and sumptuous materials, can add something to your photographs and video, and is the icing on the cake of your perfect wedding day.

Deciding on décor

If your head is spinning from looking at inspiration on Instagram and Pinterest, here are some tips to help you navigate the world of wedding décor.

Decide what you should decorate

Decide which spaces in your venue are going to be important. Not every available bit of space needs decorating. Prioritising the most important areas will help you to keep costs down. Bridestory’s wedding décor blog gives you some great tips on where to start. Think about where your guests will spend most of their time and most of all, make sure everything works together to create the beautiful look you’ve dreamed of.


The ceremony

This is the most important part of the day, so making your surroundings look amazing is a must. It all adds to the beauty and romance of the occasion. Here are some ideas for adding some magic to the moment when you say ‘I do.’

The entrance: Decorate the entrance with flowers, ribbons, garlands, or fabric. Think about creating entrance tables.

The aisle: Make your aisle a beautiful focal point by using petals, lanterns, floral displays, or arch canopies, which are the latest trend. You can also put your centrepieces on plinths to decorate your aisle.

Pew decorations: These draw attention to your entrance into the main room.

The Altar/Arch/Chuppah: This makes a perfect backdrop for your ‘wedding kiss’ photo. Floral and fabric arches, flower walls, or moongates look amazing.



The reception

This is the part of the day where you get to forget your nerves a little and celebrate with your guests, so your décor should reflect this. Here are some ways to make your room look breath-taking.

The stage/top table: This is the main focus of the room and it’s the backdrop for a lot of the photographs. If you used a backdrop for your ceremony, you can reuse it when your reception room is dressed.

The centrepieces: When the guests see beautifully dressed tables, it makes them feel appreciated and extra happy to be part of your day. And it’s always good when something makes them say ‘Wow!’


Hanging décor: This looks amazing in reception rooms. This includes lighting, bunting, draping, and hanging floral arrangements made from beautiful flowers like Wisteria. Lighting in particular can really help you to create an atmosphere.

Seating: Decorate seating based on chair types, the most common is a chair cover and sash always, but venues are moving towards Chivari chairs and there are some beautiful styling options for these chairs. 

Table settings: Creating a pretty layout for place cards, cutlery, napkins, and wedding favours really enhances a table, and it looks great in the wedding detail photographs.


Flowers: Think about reusing flowers from the ceremony; registrar flowers can be placed on the top table, and aisle flowers can be placed strategically around the room.

Once these areas are catered for, then start looking at any guest waiting areas or outdoor spaces that might need dressing.

Wedding Décor dos and don’ts

  • DO research wedding themes and colour schemes and create an inspiration board and make lists of what your venue might need.
  • DO show your decorator/event stylist what you want to achieve. Remember however, that the style of your venue will dictate your decorations. Elaborate rooms won’t need as much dressing, whereas plain rooms require a lot of styling.
  • DO stick to your budget. You might want to concentrate on making a statement with one type of decoration if your budget is tight. Find a quality provider who can match your budget.
  • DO choose your flowers carefully to complement your venue and the other décor you want.
  • DON’T be disorganised and throw anything and everything together.
  • DON’T skimp on the details. Your wedding décor is your chance to create something beautiful and personal.
  • DON’T underestimate the impact that good lighting can have on the way your venue looks and the atmosphere it can create.




 Does Pinterest Help or Hinder Your Wedding Planning?

Posted 02/01/2018  12:22:17 PM


A study found that 40 million brides are using Pinterest to find inspiration when they are planning their wedding. The fact that there are nearly 900 million pins about weddings and 378 million wedding related searches conducted every year doesn’t lie. But does Pinterest help or hinder your wedding planning?

Social media envy

Pinterest sells itself as a ‘virtual inspiration board comprised of a collection of favourite inspiration in the form of photos and imagery’ or is it, as the critics might say, ‘A place to waste a lot of time!’

It’s also a platform for creating serious pangs of envy.

Can you really have your Pinterest- worthy dream wedding on the budget you have, and is this driving a Pinterest- perfect wedding culture? What if your budget just won’t stretch?

Research into social media sites has shown that they can negatively affect our minds, particularly our feelings of self-worth. When you see other people’s Facebook updates about their latest dream holidays, expensive purchases, and life events, you begin to wonder ‘Where did I go wrong?’, or ‘Why can’t my life be like that?’ We are all guilty of having these types of feelings at some point.

The top 5 Pinterest mistakes

Venuelust’s blog discusses 5 mistakes a bride can make when using Pinterest:

1 Over pinning unrealistic ideas

I might receive an email from a bride who has pinned every last detail of her dream wedding, then when we discuss budget, the two very rarely meet in the middle. Many of the images on Pinterest are styled photo shoots, and to achieve it comes with a high price tag. This can make you very disheartened, if you realise that your budget doesn’t stretch.

Add to this the fact that over pinning can make you feel confused, as often having too many choices, trying to coordinate too many looks and clashing themes leads to stress and indecisive behaviour.

My tip is to choose a few elements of a look you want to achieve, step away from the computer, and work with your husband to be, your bridesmaids, your mother, and your wedding venue to create a look that is uniquely you.


2) Looking at Pinterest for wedding ideas…then deciding to make the entire wedding a DIY job

You might see your dream centrepieces or décor on Pinterest then decide you’re going to recreate it yourself. If you can, great; if you can’t, don’t!

If you don’t have a crafty bone in your body, put the glue gun down! Wasted materials will cost you more in the long run, not to mention the stress of not being able to create your dream look.

Plus, on the run up to your wedding, would you want to be relaxing with your bridesmaids at a spa, or dressing your venue until 1am?!


3) Lack of organisation

Pinterest can be great for building up a picture of the colour scheme you want, and of your vision for your big day, but are you using it to its full potential? If you find that you pin everything you like the look of to one board called ‘wedding’, you might be at a loss when you have to search through all of the images to show your florist or cake maker what you want.

Organisation is key, so it’s best to categorise your boards into the most important elements of your day:

                  - Photography

                  - Flowers

                  - Table centrepieces & reception decor

                  - Ceremony decor

                  - Wedding Cake

                  - Bridesmaid dresses

                  - Wedding dress

                  - Wedding hair and accessories


TOP TIP- make a note under the picture about why you pinned it. What did you like about the picture? Was it the colours, the style, the dress, or the flowers?

This will mean that when you go to meet your wedding planner, or your suppliers, you are armed with all of the information they will need to help you create your vision. I always ask a bride if she has a board to look at, so I understand exactly what she means when she wants me to create a ‘Winter Wonderland’ theme. My idea of what this might look like could be very different from hers!


4) The WOW factor

I am a great believer in creating the ‘wow factor’ for my brides, and this means not allowing them to see their reception or ceremony room completely dressed before it’s finished. It makes for a beautiful moment when they see it for the first time.

And on the big day, it’s the same for your guests. It’s wonderful to see them being wowed by your dress, what your venue looks like when it’s dressed, and being excited by your entertainment.

A downside of Pinterest boards is that unless you keep them private, your friends and family have already had a sneak preview of all of the elements of your day and it can ruin the surprise.

5)Don’t forget that it’s not all about Pinterest!

Don’t get caught up in the Pinterest bubble, you might find that the ideas that you are pinning are out of date; wedding dress styles or particular colours might be discontinued. Your best bet is to look at websites and magazines for the most up to date information and on-trend ideas.


Lessons you can learn from Pinterest

By all means, use Pinterest for inspiration, but your wedding day is about YOU! It should reflect your own personality and sense of style. Once you have a few good ideas, stop looking and don’t go back into the world of Pinterest. Don’t lose sight of what your day is actually about.

Contact us if you would like us to help plan your perfect day!




Following My Dream to Help Others Create Theirs

POSTED 03/07/2017  11:26:20 AM

One of the questions I get asked the most is why did you start your business?

It was my own wedding that sparked my love of event planning. In the course of planning and styling my own wedding, I found that I loved the attention to detail that was involved in creating the day of my dreams. I even went as far as sewing tiny beads and snowflakes on to my place cards, which earned me the nickname ‘Monica.’ And yes, one day I will have my own headset!

I have always had creative flair, but a creative career was never something I’d considered, apart from a fleeting thought about working in floristry when I was at a careers fair. I told myself to stick with my chosen career path of teacher training; I had already completed a business degree and was studying for my PGCE in Secondary Education. I felt I had started down that road so I had to follow it through.

A woman without a plan

2 years later, after I had my children, I found myself feeling disillusioned with my career choice. For the first time in my life, I didn’t have a ‘plan’, and I constantly asked myself ‘where do I go from here?’

From fate to franchise

But fate intervened, as it so often does in life. While planning my sister’s wedding, I met with an event planning company based in London. I made a brief remark about wanting to style weddings, and here I am, 4 ½ years on, running my own events planning business!

I joined the company as a franchise for the South West, and in the 3 years I was with them, I learned my craft. I learned everything from event planning and preparation to how to build eye-catching centrepieces and develop good relationships with suppliers. But the most important thing I learned was how to stay ahead of the competition and how to make people choose you for their event.

Going it alone

In 2015, I felt the franchise wasn’t for me anymore, as things were moving in a direction that I didn’t want to go. So, I took what I’d learned and made the leap into starting my own business; Once Upon A Table was born.

Over the past 18 months, the business has gone from strength to strength. We have forged some excellent relationships with local venues and suppliers, which has resulted in us creating some amazing weddings.

Creating the perfect day

When people ask why I love what I do, there is no easy answer. I adore the freedom, creative and otherwise, of working for myself. I love to meet couples that are just starting out on their journey through life together, I love developing ideas and products, decorating venues and ceremony rooms, and seeing the end result when it all comes together.

The icing on the cake, pardon the pun, is knowing that the beautiful things I’ve put in place delight my clients every single time, and help to make their dreams of their perfect day come true.



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