Tag Archives: wedding planning

Second thoughts

27 Nov

Our bride blogger, Alicia, is back for installment 9 on the Modern Wedding blog and she’s having second thoughts…

There are many decisions to be made in planning a wedding. For example should you have an indoor or an outdoor wedding, a modern or a vintage theme, beach or garden photos, vanilla or recycled stationary… it seems endless. I said that the detail wouldn’t get to me, but after six months of preparations it has! After eight months of looking and planning, all of the details are starting to get blurry I can’t seem to make a confident decision anymore.

For example, this weekend my future sister-in-law was just telling us about the beautiful wedding that she had just attended. It was glamorous and quirky and very on trend, and for each thing that she said I kept thinking “oh. Maybe we should have done that?”

Cute Wedding Table - Image by Jose Villa

Image by Jose Villa Photography

Wedding Favour

Candle Wedding Decorations

A real sign of doubt occurred a few weeks ago (doubts about the dress that is, not about the man! ;-). When I saw the Karen Willis Holmes collection I suddenly wanted to sell my wedding dress and burst out in the sun radiant and breathtaking in the Jillian or the Anastacia.

So what has happened? Where has this “grass is greener” idea come from?

Jillian by Karen Willis Holmes

Jillian by Karen Willis Holmes

Anastacia by Karen Willis Holmes

Anastacia by Karen Willis Holmes

I think that it’s because of information overload. I’ve read and researched too much. And I don’t necessarily get to see the price tag that comes with some of these things, and which might be way outside my budget anyway. So I have taken a step back. I’m spending very little time on Pinterest, and I am instead relying on my gut instinct and preference for personal style and options.

Personal Wedding Note

So our wedding may end up being a little bit of a crazy hodgepodge of ideas and styles. And so?! If that’s the case then it will be quirky in our way, not the quirkiness of a magazine or a stylist. The important thing is that we are comfortable, in love and at ease with our guests and that people will say “wow, that wedding favour really is Alicia” or “that music is so Shane”.

Alicia x

Image Credits from top to bottom:

Image from josevillablog.com, Image from Bellethemagazine.com, Image from descrumblesetdesbulles.tumblr.com, Jillian (KWH demi couture collection), Anastacia by Karen Willis Holmes, Love note image from weheartit.com


Come on a journey with our new bride blogger

27 Jul

We have invited one of our Manly brides, Alicia to share her journey to married bliss with us. She will be blogging about her wedding planning successes, discoveries and ideas along the way, so keep an eye out for her posts every fortnight on Modern Wedding. Here is her first installment!Manly brides, Alicia

Engagement: 4 months in, 6 months to go!

It has been 4 months since my then boyfriend laid out a picnic rug, dropped down on one knee, sprung a diamond and popped the question. Just like that picture above (in fact, exactly in that picture above). We now have six months to go until our big day!

I wasn’t sure how I was going to approach or handle the wedding planning at first. I’ve been a bridesmaid three times (3.5 if you count the time I got sacked!). The first time I had no clue (I think I was good on the day), the second time I did help a bit but I probably still skived off being 2nd bridesmaid. The third time I did an awesome job, perhaps because I’d learned from the first two experiences, or maybe it was because I was the only bridesmaid, or because I was just more mature. Anyway, each time I was lucky to assist a relaxed bride and have heaps of fun. That’s what I’m aiming for at our own wedding. Fun and relaxed!

Alicia - bridesmaid in Manly
2001, 2006, 2011. Three times a bridesmaid…

I may have the role of bridesmaid down pat but I don’t have the first clue about organising an entire wedding. On getting engaged my head suddenly popped with a LOT of annoying questions. The first step I took was to buy a bridal magazine. Hey, I never expected to go ‘bridal’ on everyone, but it happened. I bought my first magazine on “cough” day three of the engagement when I saw a magic word on the front cover: TIMELINES. Halleluiah! Three days in and I couldn’t stand the bewilderment and confusion any longer, a timeline was just what I needed to identify the things to think about and the things I could shut my eyes, block my ears and go ‘lalalala’ about for a few months.

Fast forward 4 months and I’ve left the crossroads of disorientated, perplexed and bewildered, and now I have a fitness program, skin-care regime, a reception venue, celebrant, cars, photographer and a dress. It sounds like a lot! But if you’re like me then it feels as though these things just happened. OK, I may be an A-type scientist project manager, and so there might be a little over-analysis and meticulous list-making, but that doesn’t bother me. In fact (shh!) it makes me happy.

Scales? Check. Healthy eating plan? Check. Dress? Check. Reception? Check. car? Check… 4 months in and things seem to be happening. Phewness!

This has all happened via magazines, blogs, tweets and Pinterest. Ok so maybe the key ingredient is idle hours, but make the most of public transport, rainy Saturday afternoons, and the nights when fiancé is out watching rugby. Yes, I did consult fiancé along the way, I treat him much like he’s the CEO and I’m the PA… he thinks he’s in charge but ultimately I decide what he gets to decide! Any PA’s out there? That’s right, yeah?

So the wedding planning has been a lot of fun, probably because most of my research gets done with a glass of wine, and we’ve often achieved a lot things spontaneously. For example, we found our wedding band while cashing in on a GroupOn voucher at a Jazz Club. And I stumbled across our potential photographer, Dave, here on the Modern Wedding Blog. Read the story of Tom and Kimberly’s fun Sydney wedding and look at the photos. That’s the mood we want to create.

I guess my motto has been that if we love it, we’ll book it. I try not dwell on all the options, not attempt to see everything, to trust my heart and gut feeling. It’s a bit like life really…

How do you think I’ll go in the next 6 months? Stay tuned and join me. I’ll report back in a couple of weeks and let you know how all the ‘zen’ is going.

Alicia x

About Alicia: Alicia is a water scientist by day and a blogger/jogger/home cooker by night. She is madly in love with her fiancé Shane, Pinterest and her fitness program. Check out her Pinterest board , her lifestyle blog and food blog, and the Bride Body fitness program she’s following.

Alicia will be guest blogging for the MW Blog through the six months leading up to her wedding day.

Alicia resides in Manly, Sydney, and is a Victorian country girl at heart.

Swing by Modern Wedding Facebook or Twitter and ask Alicia a question.

Create a guest list without the fuss

9 Jul

Stop! Don’t elope just yet…. Creating a wedding guest list doesn’t have to be that hard!

The number of wedding guests you invite is usually dictated by the venue you choose and the budget you are working by.
Unfortunately the arduous task of choosing who makes the cut becomes more like picking who will be on your sport team at school. It can laden you with guilt that you are “choosing” this person over that one.

So keep these tips and points in mind and your road to a finished guest list will be that much smoother.

Wedding party - garden wedding

Vivid Photography

A wedding is not the time to gather all your facebook friends & find your long-lost pals!
Focus on people who matter to you off-line and in the present!

If the parents are chipping in financially – it’s only fair that they can add a few to the guest list.
Set limits upfront so there is no confusion and they have a number to work with. When discussing the guest list with your parents remember to choose your battles, be firm with voicing your wants, but give in if it’s a small issue. You don’t need to bring emotions and stress into the task.

If in doubt, don’t invite!
It is your day and you should only be surrounded by people you really want there.

Wedding photography - black and white

Photography on Hermitage

Drop the ‘plus ones’.
Friends who aren’t in long term relationships can fly solo for the night. Good friends will understand that space it tight and you can’t add their latest fling to the guest list.

Skip your co-workers.
If you are not close with your colleagues then leave them off the guest list. It gets tricky to invite some and not others, so unless you are inviting all, it’s best to decide not to have any.

Steer clear of chain groups.
If putting one friend on the list obliges to you to add five other people from the group, then skip them all. If once the guest list is complete and there is space, then you can invite away.

Think about some alternatives:
a. Celebrate with everyone at a big engagement party.
Just don’t do what my brother-in-law did at his engagement party and add at the end of his speech “See you all at the wedding!”
b. Have a casual pre or post wedding party.
This works well if you are planning a destination wedding.
c. Invite your work colleagues to your Hen’s or Buck’s party.
d. Allow your mum to invite her group of friends to the kitchen tea.

Don’t worry about offending people, it is your day and people will understand that you can’t invite everyone.

To get started with your guest list – go to Modern Wedding’s free planning tools, enter your list into the guest list tool and specify special requirements as they come in, check people off as they are invited, when they accept or decline. This tool is also connected to a simple seating chart that can be emailed or exported for your venue.

Happy planning and inviting!

Have you finished your wedding guest list? Do you have any advice to add? Leave your comments in the section below or on our Facebook or Twitter.

Kate x

Ten wedding unavoidables you need to know about.

1 Jun

Despite meticulous wedding plans, trials, checklists and tastings… there are things that will happen no matter what!

It’s best to be aware of these things so you can at least mentally prepare, and then take them in your stride.

1. Emotions will stop you resting the night before. 
You will be high on nerves, excitement and a mix of happy, sad, scared and delirious. It’s going to be intense.
You need to employ some serious relaxation techniques so you can get your beauty sleep – see Bupa’s meditation techniques, run a bath, practice some yoga or read a good book.

Bridal relaxation

Swiss Grand

2. You will shed a tear… or two… or three…
They will be happy tears – even the hardest nuts to crack won’t be able to slip a couple of drops out by the days end.
Make sure you wear waterproof mascara, and pack some touch up makeup in your wedding emergency pack.  If you know you are a bawler, pack some eye drops so you don’t have red, puffy eyes for the whole of the day.

Bride and groom embrace

Lisa Thompson Photography

 3. Time will fly.
You’ve probably heard it a million times from your married friends, but seriously! Time. Will. Fly!
The best approach is to stop with your new husband, take it in together and whisper “we are married!!!!!” Steal a moment and appreciate the day.

Sydney wedding

Stuart Leal Photography

4. It will take you longer to get ready than you think. 
Time generally fastens when it comes to your wedding, but the morning before it’s like a warp speed! Hair, makeup, pre-wedding photos plus a couple of minor freak outs all add up to zero minutes to slip your gown on.
Make sure you have someone keeping time for you and leave no less time than half an hour to don your dress. You will need at least one person to help you pull, tuck and squeeze it on without smudging makeup and getting fake-tan on the white satin.

Bridal gown - getting dressed

Natalie Howe Photography

5. Your flower-girls and page-boys will get tired and ratty.
Go easy on the little kiddies and don’t expect a whole day from them. You may have to meet them at the church, instead of insisting that they do the big hair and makeup morning with the grown-ups. You don’t want a tantrum at the end of the aisle!

Flower girls and page boys

Natalie Howe Photography

6. Things will run over-time.
Expect that your speech givers, your photos and every other part will run over time. No one will stick to their time limits, everything generally takes longer than you think it will.

Talk to the reception venue/caterer about how they will handle this, as they will be running to a schedule to get the mains and desserts out  before the dancing starts. The last thing your want is for the party time to be cut short!

Bridal dance

Fresh Images

7. You can’t do everything on the day.
You need to delegate a lot of on-the-day jobs, even if you want to do it yourself. You will just be too busy.

8. Everyone wants a piece of you.
Be prepared to be pulled this way and that… even excusing yourself for the bathroom will seem hard.
Soak up the attention and accept that you won’t be able to have a big chat with everyone.
It’s a good idea to try and get around to every table when guests are seated for dinner. That way you will have at least acknowledged everyone at your wedding.

Wedding reception at the Hunter Valley

D & V Photography

9. Something will go wrong.
No matter how many times you have ticked your checklist, confirmed with suppliers, practised and rehearsed, something will not go as planned. There’s a plethora of variables and no one can control everything, so it’s best to accept it now and you will hopefully relax about it on the day.
No-one cares if there is a mishap the only thing that matters is how gracefully you deal with it.

10. You will be exhausted.
The day may fly by, but it is a huge day with enormous emotions so expect to fall in a (joyous) heap afterwards.

So now you are prepared for what WILL happen on the day now all that’s left is to enjoy your wedding and laugh at the possible imperfections.

Kate x

If you’re on the other side of your wedding and have something to add or to laugh about – we’d love to hear from you! Leave your comments in the section below.

Or swing by Facebook or Twitter to comment.

Top ten wedding facebook sites that’ll save you time!

28 May

Facebook and wedding planning go hand in had!

Facebook is great for keeping up to date with old, present and new friends, sharing and even a little … spying?? But did you know how amazing it can be for gathering wedding ideas, finding bridal sales, connecting with other brides, wedding planning info, styling and loads more?

Facebook is chocka-block full of new ideas for your wedding. If you are connected with the right pages, you’ll save time searching around for sales, ideas, tips and info.  You can even ask other brides and experts for advice… the answers will come almost instantly!

So how do you make sure you are connected to the right pages? Start here.

Here are our top ten picks for wedding pages on Facebook.

Our favourite ideas and Inspiration pages

Wedding ideas site

Wedding Concepts is an event design and planning company in South Africa. The weddings they create are out-of-this-world! We always love to take a peak at what they are up to and what stunning new ideas they come up with. This is a great page for masses of inspiration!

Wedding Flower inspiration

Colin Cowie is an international superstar when it comes to wedding design and planning. His facebook is updated regularly with incredible weddings and ideas. Keep an eye on this page for trends and great ideas coming out of the US.

Wedding ideas site

Lover.ly is simply beautiful. The editors at Lover.ly use their resources to choose the best from wedding bloggers and sites around the world and post it on their page. A great way to get heaps of international ideas.

Modern Wedding ideas

Of course Modern Wedding! Our team absolutely love to bring our brides the very best inspiration, ideas, sales and info! We regularly run competitions to give away big ticket wedding items. Our brides are very supportive of each other and always eager to help out with other bride’s questions or concerns.

Wedding ideas

White Room Events is an Aussie page that fills us with joy and is brimming with great stuff. You will find real weddings, styled inspiration shoots, cool products and fab themes. Enjoy!

Floral Inspiration pages

Wedding Flower inspiration

Karen Tran Florals post everything wedding flowers – their weddings and flowers are exquisite. This US site never fails to impress!

Flower inspiration facebook site

Chanele Rose Flowers & Events is a very active page that is full over floral inspiration and a great page to keep up to date with floral trends in Australia.

Fashion inspiration

Wedding Fashion inspiration on facebook

Karen Willis Holmes continually post stunning fashion items. This is an Australian site that is definitely one to watch if you are interested in what’s hot in Aussie wedding fashion.

Pronovias facebook

We love to keep an eye on the Pronovias page for all their fashion creativity and the trends coming out of Europe. They upload their runway shows as well as interviews, new ranges and fashion news updates. A great way to keep in touch with European fashion.

Real wedding inspiration

Real wedding inspiration on facebook

It’s always a great idea to peruse a good photographer’s facebook page and check out the real weddings they have done. Inlighten Photography are always active in updating their site with fresh weddings. They have a stunning style and show beautiful weddings.

These are just a few of our favourites, I really could go on all day if I was to put up everything we watched, but this gives you a good base to start with. Make sure you ‘Like’ those pages that are relevant to you and please share your favourites with us! Leave us a link in the comments section below – so other brides can benefit from your research too!

Happy Monday!


Modern Wedding will be hosting a Social Media Workshop for the Wedding Industry. The first will be in Sydney on the 12th June and will cover ‘How to make social media work for your company.’ 

Get all the info on the workshop now.

Kate xx

Become a Modern Wedding member to receive our monthly newsletter that has stacks of inspiration, there are alsio some fabulous free planning tools to help save you time when you are planning your wedding.


Aussie brides & stress…

7 Oct

At the beginning of the week, we asked you how stressed you are about your wedding and the results showed that a whopping 25% of you are lying awake at night in a stupor of worry!

The bright side of the story is that you’re not alone and there are ways to deal with and prevent the stress.

Planning a wedding can be an extremely stressful time. Health care company, Bupa recently conducted a national survey, which showed that one in five engaged Australians have reconsidered getting married due to wedding-related stress.

Bridal stress

photo by glendali

Brides are told that this time should be fun and joyful however many couples find that it is just the opposite. Brides and grooms don’t quite agree on where the stress comes from, but interestingly they do agree equally on one cause of stress – the mother of the bride!!! Is this true for you??

Overall, brides and grooms blame themselves as a cause of anxiety, but it would seem other people are still the cause of some serious stress. The survey found that 15% of people getting married have banned a family member or friend from attending their wedding as a result of wedding-related stress!!

Here is the breakdown of the biggest wedding stressors:

Bridal stress graph

Information from Bupa

Bupa Health and Wellness Advisor, Guy Leech, says it’s important people put their wedding day in perspective. “Rather than being so overwhelmed that you reconsider getting married, or start uninviting friends and family, people need to implement some simple strategies to better manage stress.”

Pay close attention bridezillas (and groomzillas), here are Leech’s tips to combat your stress.

Work together – Get your partner involved with planning for the big day. Attempting to plan a wedding on your own is asking for stress.

Wedding planning

CHP Image Studio

Agree roles – Come to an agreement early on regarding how much involvement each of you will have and how you’re going to reach solutions.

Get enough sleep –Excitement and anxiety around the big day keeps many brides out of bed, even if they’re exhausted. Try meditation or yoga to prepare you for a good night’s sleep.

Stay healthy – Exercising as little as 30 minutes a day may help to combat stress as well as keep you in good shape. Cut back on the caffeine; stock up on healthy snacks; don’t skip breakfast.


Photo by Cheryl Empey

Learn to say ‘no’ – Don’t try to satisfy everyone. In order to stress less, you have to learn to say ‘no’ so that you don’t over-commit yourself.

Don’t over-commit financially – Starting marriage with large debts will put a strain on life soon after the wedding.

It’s all about you (two) – Remember that for all the stress about guests, flowers, cakes etc your love is what’s going to last forever.

Bridal couple

Cameron Bloom Photography

Be organised – Organisation is the key to feeling in control. By registering on Modern Wedding you will have seven planning tools to help you plan and sort ideas, supplies and lists. A little organisation goes along way in managing stress and curbing those freak out moments!

Thanks to Bupa for sharing those findings with us.

I hope all our stressed brides can find some relief soon and the rest of you continue in your less stressed journeys.

Do you have any stress-busting tips for other brides? Share them with us in the comments section below or on our facebook page!

Isabel 🙂