The Moonflower Artistry Top 10 Wedding Check List

Being an event manager, I've decided to share the fundamentals when it comes to organising a wedding. In Australia we are very lucky to have beautiful locations & weather, most of the year. Here are my Top 10 tips when planning your big day!

welcome board

1.  Logistics – Where and When?

The time of year you decide to get married can reflect the venue you decide to go with.  Would you like an Indoor or outdoor ceremony /reception?  In Sydney, April is a good time to get married as its not so hot and barely rains.  If you have a favourite spot you and your lover like to frequent – why not get married there?  Approach the local council and find out if its possible. You shouldn’t be limited to inside when it comes to your big day.  One thing I can advise is doing it all in the same spot, walking distance between ceremony & reception.  You want your wedding day to be relaxed, easy & stress free for everyone.  Think about creating an event where everyone can have fun, rather than schlepping all over town. How I see it - bubbles on arrival, then let the fun begin!

2. The Bridal Party

By now I'm pretty sure you know who you’d like to be walking down the aisle with you when it comes to bridesmaids & groomsmen.  When choosing your Maid of Honour and Best Man, think about how this person will essentially be playing a big role when it comes to your wedding. From bucks & hen nights, speeches, to calling the shoots when you're not around.  Why not all go shopping for your wedding dress & suits for the boys?  Some advice - try not to let your bridal numbers get out of hand. I'd try and keep your bridal party relatively small & delegate the ‘not too sure’ to contribute to your wedding in another capacity ie; MC or music director.  Not to sound vain, but you should be thinking - how will my wedding photo’s look & will I have fun with these people on my big day?  Keep your bridal party fun & carefree - you don't want somebody who is negative bringing you down on your day or days.  

3.  Vendor List

These are the external people who will be helping you out on the day.  Choose these people wisely, shop around for a few quotes.

Florist - the one who makes your day romantic through the language of flowers :) Celebrant - the one who helps you say 'I Do'. Photographer - the official wedding photographer capturing your big day. Wedding/Event Planner - hire one of these if you're hopeless in co-ordinating your day & you'd like to sit back and not have to stress about the running order of everything, Stylist - the creative visionary, who will help you source materials & create the look & feel of your wedding. Music Director - from walking down the aisle to the first dance.  I think your music is important as it sets the tone for your event.  You may like live music or even a DJ to boogie the night away. Transport - vintage car on arrival?  Need to transport guests from hotel to venue? Put somebody in charge of this so there is no hassle.  You could even set up an Uber account for everyone :)

4.  Hens & Bucks Night

I'd suggest planning these a month before your big day so you’re not tired or feeling hungover close to your wedding day! This night/day/weekend is every bit important as your wedding day.  Hire a professional event planner if you don’t have time yourself.  This is also a great opportunity to give presents to your bridal party & to create a bond between the people who will be sharing your big day with you. Popular things these days are – spa weekends away, interstate or overseas getaways, dinner parties where the 2 x parties meet up at the end of the night.  Think outside of the box & don't hold back in what you'd like to do! 

5.  Invite List

If you’ve had an engagement party then this list can also be used for your wedding day. Give your overseas friends and family enough notice so they can get organised & suggest accommodation for them to stay in thats close by to the venue, so they can make a holiday out of the experience & have fun too! Also don't forget your dress code! Smart/Casual, Tropical, Formal or even themed? Think of where your wedding will be & decide around that – if its by the ocean a more relaxed approach would be nice for your guests.  If you’ve always wanted a formal wedding then that’s ok too.  Just don’t give out free thongs if it’s a beach wedding as this has been done to death!  Barefoot all the way baby!

6.  Gifts

Everyone likes to give a present to the lucky couple for so its nice to incorporate a gift table at your reception.  Even if this space is used as a guest book opportunity or dedicate some sort or memory to i.e; a photo booth. Couples are opting away from your traditional registry at the local department store and instead opting for a donation to their favourite charity as a gift. Honeymoon funds are also popular.  If you do go with a gift registry why not make it something that reflects you both as a couple? You might have your eye on a unique furniture piece or want that designer dress?  Why not suggest something that can remember your wedding day each time you see it.

7.  Fun Stuff

If you're having an outdoor wedding, why not incorporate a few traditional games like a giant chess board?  Bocce? People love interactive things to do & its also something to keep your guests entertained while you have your photos taken.  Think what reflects you as a couple? Photo Booths, run by a professional, are really popular at the moment.  Antique frames to pose with, then upload on instagram.  Start your own hashtag that you can tell everyone about, there are some great sites where you can print these photos at a later date.  Recently I was at a wedding where the couple had a suggestion box for dates they should go on together.  Something unique where everyone contributes to your day will bring lots of fun memories! I've also seen a growing trend at the reception of dedicating an area to past wedding photo's that have been in the family.  Wow, how fashion has changed!!

8.  The Wedding Night

Treat yourself on your wedding night to a nice hotel or getaway, if your honeymoon doesn’t follow straight away.  Its nice to leave your guests & finally have some alone time.  Organise a beautiful vintage car to whisk you away so you can start your new life together in style. Pre-organise as much as you can at your hotel so you can arrive straight from the venue, luggage free.  Hotel check-ins are usually around 2pm so you can always delicate somebody to drop off your weekender or get your wedding planner to take care of all of this.  No doubt you’ll be in the ‘honeymoon suite’ so your hotel should have everything covered for you, like bubbles on arrival, don't forget a late check out ;)

9.  The Honeymoon

Depending on time & budgets planning your honeymoon can happen straight away or in the coming weeks/months.  Decide on somewhere that holds fond memories or better still create new ones at a destination you've always wanted to explore together. Adventure holidays can be fun? Chilling out and doing nothing by the ocean? Snuggling by an open fire? Don't forget to milk it when you're booking everything! Tell everyone it's your honeymoon - chances are you'll get some type of upgrade & it's that one time in your life you get to ask for the honeymoon suite & it is your actual honeymoon ;) Don't forget a good a camera to capture all the fun!

10.  ‘Thank You’s’ & Post Event

If you’ve had a good time, it’s nice to let everybody know, including the hired help!  Vendors love to hear they have made your special day a memorable one.  A thank you can go a long way!  If you don’t have time because you are on your honeymoon, a week after your event send out a ‘thank you’ email to everyone that made your day run smoothly. We love it when you get an sms on the wedding night. Dedicating a website for everyone to upload their photos on is also a great idea.

Good luck with your planning lovers, we hope this has helped in some way to get you thinking about your big day.  If you need a hand with vendors, we have a list of experts that can help you out.

Happy planning!!!

The Moonflower Team xxxooo