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Bouquet & Bells / The Magazine Issue 04: Pre-Order Now!
BY CLAIRE BOON
5 MIN READ
Issue 04 of Bouquet & Bells / The Magazine is now available for PRE-ORDER!
First of all, we sincerely hope your wedding plans are back on track. It’s so lovely to see weddings beginning to happen again, and we are excited to continue to inspire you through our magazine.
This bumper issue celebrates weddings getting back on track. You won’t find anything but positivity and hopefulness here! With features including a mixture of lavish and upmarket dos along with the more alternative and intimate celebration, this issue is full-to-bursting with the best inspiration for your day. Plus, we’ve gathered together 50+ unique ideas that will make your day stand out and be remembered for all the right reasons.
We also spoke with real couples that have kindly shared their personal stories on how their wedding was affected by COVID-19 including Jessica & Jonathan’s viral wedding. We hope this gives you a sense of not feeling like you’re alone, and no matter what, love always wins.
To tie everything together, we help solve the most common wedding problems submitted by real couples.
All our issues include a full supplier directory filled with the businesses we have worked with and trust. There’s a huge selection including bridal wear, florists, entertainment and everything in between.
This bumper issue also includes articles from some of the best in the industry, sharing their top planning tips to help make the process as easy and stress-free as possible.
Once again, we have YOU to thank for the cover image of this issue. We shared a poll on Instagram (@bouquetandbells) and asked you to pick your fave image from a selection of options and this was the clear winner – we think it’s a bloody marvellous choice! We have the incredible Twigs Branch Photography to thank for capturing the striking image of Harley & David at a Viking shoot we coordinated earlier in the year. See the full feature inside this issue.
Introducing our brand new ‘Meet the Supplier’ series. We’re so exited to be interviewing a selection of fantastic wedding specialists. We take pride in recommending the finest in the industry, and hope this series will help you find the perfect suppliers for your day.
Couples would love to have their dog (fur baby) attend one of their most wonderful and exciting days of their life but struggle with logistics to ensure all of their friends and family members don’t miss out on any part of their wedding day.
This is why our Exclusive Wedding Pet Chaperone Service is so popular. We plan, co-ordinate and take away all the stress for the happy couple so their dog can be a big part of their wedding day!
Whether they would like their fur baby to be their ring bearer, best man, bridesmaid or just attend for an hour for the wedding photographs, we are here to make all of their wedding dreams a reality.
We do not offer set packages as every wedding and their pet care needs are different. We create a tailor made package to meet the couple’s requirements so that they have complete peace of mind on their special day.
Wedding Day Pet Sitting
A great alternative to our Chaperone Service …
Not every dog is suitable to attend the wedding due to venues restrictions, their temperament or well being.
We have also found that friends or family members struggle with pet care whilst attending the wedding. Some guests have to travel a long distance and want to bring their dog along but again, struggle with pet care options, as they don’t want to miss out on any part of the wedding day.
What makes you different?
Dog arriving in style to the wedding!
We are popular with couples due to the quirky additions which make our Exclusive Wedding Pet Chaperone Service unique!
Couples love the concept of their dog arriving in style in their own wedding car/vehicle. They can choose either a Mini Cooper or a Brand New Professional Converted Dog Van.
What is even more special is that the car/van is decorated with our specially patented designed wedding car ribbons and bows!
Dog Ring Bearer mechanism!
We have created a simple but proven mechanism whereby their dog delivers the rings down the aisle in a safe, secure and fun manner.
How did it all start?
Precious Pets Micro ID is a husband and wife team established Pet Care Service.
In 2018, we decided it was the right time for Adrian to change career direction and pursue his lifelong dream of working with dogs and to train as a self-employed Professional Dog Grooming Stylist.
After three months of commuting to Manchester, Adrian became a fully qualified Dog Grooming Stylist. To subsidise his grooming services and income we decided to set up a number of additional pet care services which included dog walking, puppy visits, cat care at home and mobile micro chipping.
2017/2018 was a very popular time for our friends and family getting married and who all owned dogs. Kennels was definitely not an option for their dogs on their wedding day, so rather than a gift, they asked us to care for and chaperone their dogs at the wedding, which, of course, we did!
One evening, whilst putting our business strategy together, we decided to put together a Wedding Pet Chaperone Service and commence a large-scale market research campaign with pet owners and brides/grooms by attending wedding shows and venue showcases and the creation of social media polls.
The feedback we received was unbelievable and extremely positive. It became very apparent to us that there was a large gap in the market for our Exclusive Wedding Pet Service in the wedding industry, within our local areas and the UK.
It was also very clear that kennels were not an option for many couples (as we had discovered with our friends and family), as the dog was considered to be a precious and important member of their family. They wanted them to be part of their wedding day but everyone who would normally care for their dog would be pre-occupied either getting ready for the big day or actually attending the wedding.
So we launched our Exclusive Wedding Pet Chaperone Service (Dogs at Weddings) and the rest is history. We have been overwhelmed by all the bookings, couples’ testimonials and wedding venue collaborations.
The Wedding Industry Awards 2020 – Regional Finalists (West Midlands) – Special Touch Category
Featured in Staffordshire Living Magazine
A main feature in the October 2019 edition of the Cheshire Life magazine
Appeared on BBC Radio Stoke
We have exclusivity at a variety of large high profile wedding shows in Staffordshire, Cheshire and Shropshire.
We have become official Suppliers for a variety of top wedding venues in Staffordshire, Cheshire and Shropshire.
Why should couples choose you?
Caring for your pets is more than just a business to us, it’s our passion.
As a family run business, our ethos is to look after your pets as if they were our own, whilst delivering a professional pet care service which is tailored to your specific pet care needs on a daily basis or as part of your special wedding day.
Words of wisdom
If you are considering having your dog at your wedding, check out these Dog Friendly Wedding Top Tips
If you wish to include your fur baby, ensure that you book a dog friendly wedding venue or one with an outside area for photographs
Ensure that all guests will be aware that a dog is attending the wedding, in case of allergies. A lovely idea is to send out a ‘save the date’ card featuring a photo of your dog
You may wish your dog to simply be a guest of honour at your wedding but if you would like them to play a specific role in the ceremony, think carefully about how this will work. Popular choices are a dog ring bearer or a dog flower girl but ensure that your pet has the right temperament to cope with all the attention
Rehearse as much as you can with your dog before the big day and leave ample time to practice during the actual rehearsal
If you are considering a special dog wedding collar or accessory, make sure that it is safe and comfortable for your dog. Certain flowers or foliage can be poisonous to dogs so it is vital to check
Let your wedding photographer know that you are planning on bringing your dog to your wedding. This will ensure that they are ready to capture your adorable pet in action and come up with some great fun ideas for wedding photos
At busy times our wedding pet chaperoning service is very much in demand. To avoid disappointment we would advise getting in touch as soon as possible. We would love to chat to you about your exciting plans and how we can help you have a real furrytail wedding!
Your wedding day has finally arrived! You’ve probably not slept much the night before, and are conscious that numerous people are going to begin bundling through your front door any moment. So how can you keep calm and focused? How can you actually survive and enjoy the should-be-exciting getting ready process?
I was very lucky to get married in June this year, and I was really looking forward to having all my bridesmaids and closest family members around whilst I got ready, but I knew I had to prepare and I have a lot of tips that can help you survive the getting ready process (and actually enjoy it!).
It’s all in the prep
I’d highly recommend getting as organised as possible in advance to the day. This will avoid rushing around trying to get everything done on the morning of.
Buy some yummy nibbles, a range of drinks (soft and bubbly), make sure all the bathrooms are clean and beds are fresh for a relaxed start. I also arranged designated areas for the hair stylists and makeup artists to set up and prepared it for their arrival.
I also prepared a Spotify playlist, filled with feel good songs to play throughout the morning. You can listen and download it here.
Print off your morning schedule
I created a morning schedule with all the important events of the morning listed. This included things like what time the photographer was due to arrive, what time to leave for the church etc. Basically anything I needed to remember I put into the schedule.
It’s so important to take some time out to chill, have a bite to eat and drink lots of water. The time goes very quickly so it’s good to enjoy the moment.
Get dressed in plenty of time
The bridesmaids and Mother of the Bride should get into their dresses around 45 minutes before leaving, then they can all assist you.
My bridesmaids totally underestimated the amount of time if takes to get into dresses (sorry ladies!). The final half hour turned into a mad rush to get everyone dressed and out the door. The bridal cars were outside eagerly anticipating our departure, but the neighbours kept them chatting!
It’s important to remember that it will take the longest time to get you into your dress (especially if you have buttons running all down the back like I did!) so get your bridesmaids to help as soon as they’re dressed.
I hope you’ve gained some tips and tricks to getting ready on your wedding day. Don’t forget that you can access my library of free planning resources by clicking here.
Planning your wedding can be a tough journey – to say the least. Brides often rely on the likes of Pinterest and Bridal magazines to gain inspiration on the current trends and themes, and Bridal Forums can be a planning saviour.
Your wedding day is quite possibly one of the most important and memorable days of your life. This comes with an immense amount of pressure for everything to be perfect.
But what would REAL Brides have done differently if they could plan their wedding again?
We asked a selection of past Brides this exact question and put their responses in a blog post for you to relish.
Had a photograph with their nearest and dearest
The day is often such an overwhelming blur that it’s easy to forget to be photographed with the people you love the most. Discuss your requirements with the photographer prior to the wedding and they’ll give you a little nudge on the day to prompt the important shots.
Having a photobooth or disposal cameras on tables make it easy for guests to grab shots together.
Had a wedding video
This is the number one biggest Bridal regret. Having decent photographs is one thing, but a wedding video truly captures the day.
Those that organised a professional to shoot the whole day on film were really glad they had spent the extra money.
Lived in the moment
A lot of Brides become so overwhelmed on their wedding day that they forget to take a step back, breathe and just look at what they’ve created.
It’s your day, so don’t end up annoyed that you didn’t enjoy every minute of it because you were running around making sure everyone is happy.
Hired a Wedding Planner
We couldn’t count the amount of times we’ve heard “I wish I’d had a Wedding Planner”.
Sooo many brides only realise how stressful planning their wedding would be after their big day, and they desperately wish they’d reached out for some help and guidance before it all got too much.
We can be on site for your entire day to ensure everything runs smoothly, as well as helping with your styling and decor.
Taken a spare pair of comfortable shoes
What ruins a night? Sore feet!
Don’t forget that you’ll be wearing your wedding shoes since mid morning. Your feet are bound to throb as the day progresses. Have your Maid of Honour look after some comfy flats for you.
Letting the stress take over
The day will go extremely quickly, so it’s important to make the most of it and truly enjoy every moment.
I think it’s better to accept that there will be minor hiccups on the day. Then you can at least prepare yourself for this.
Most Bride’s are unaware of hidden wedding costs. But you’re already very wise to search the net for any potential nasty surprises that will knock a hole in your budget.
With lots of hidden wedding costs sprinkled throughout the planning process, it can cause you to go way above your budget, around 30% in fact. Ouch.
So where are these hidden costs? And how can you avoid them? Listen up, my friend, cos’ I’m about to teach you a whole lot.
Grab a pen and paper to jot down some of my essential tips.
SET-UP & BREAKDOWN
Are you going to hire a florist? A venue dresser? A cake maker? Each of these will charge various fees to cover transport costs, and the time it takes to set-up and breakdown items.
This can be anything from 20% of a single suppliers total costs. And obviously, the more suppliers you use, the more you can expect to pay in these fees.
Alterations can be costly for the Brides and Bridesmaids dresses. Before you buy, you must ask what the stores alteration policy is.
It’s extremely common for the Bride and Bridesmaids to fluctuate in size, and you don’t want to be forking out potentially double your original budget in alterations.
This can cost anything from £100 per dress.
It seems most Brides are still opting for the more traditional method of posting the invitations to guests. Which personally I LOVE, however, you must remember that not only are you paying for the invitations to be delivered, but also for stamps and RSVPs.
To keep costs down, avoid bulky or large invitations and use RSVP postcards rather than letters.
This is fo’ sure my biggest tip. If you take anything away with you today, let it be this.
Ask your venue what exactly is included in your chosen package.
Table linen? Chairs? Cake table? Lighting? These aspects can be the most costly for a wedding. And do you know why? Because it’s a WEDDING, so venues know they can be sneaky and charge up to triple what they usually would.
Be very careful that you’re not purely paying for hire of the venue.
These costs can add an additional £75 EXTRA per person. Say what?!
Bringing in your own wine sounds like a good get out of extra fees, right? It can be, but be wary of the corkage charges.
If you bring your own alcohol to avoid the venue’s costs, you may still rack up a similarly priced bill. And you may even be charged glass rental fees.
Corkage fees range from venue to venue, so it’s always worth asking.
While having an outdoor wedding may initially seem cheaper, you may have to get permits to hold your event. Add on rentals (marquee, heater, generator, etc.) can begin to get costly.
Some indoor venues will also require a permit if you choose to use candles or other non-approved details. Inquire about these before signing the contract.
Additional add ons can cost from £500.
Some venues charge extra for guests to select their own meal from a range of dishes. This can cost an additional £2 per person. However, this is not expected by guests so make life easier for yourselves and just choose some good all rounders.
If there’s no set price for a three course meal, be cheeky and save some buck by opting for the wedding cake as desert instead.
TAXES & SERVICE CHARGES
Did someone say taxes? Yawn. Listen up though, cos’ this is important.
Tax varies from country to country, however you can expect to fork out an extra 20% on food, drink and rental fees.
Make sure that the venue package is inclusive of VAT, or at least be aware of the extra costs you’ll possibly have to pay. Sometimes, you will even be taxed on the service charge, increasing costs more.
Taxes and tips will be around 1/3 of your budgeted amount.
I truly hope you learnt some useful tips. The bottom line is, always read the small print to avoid hidden fees.
TOTAL COSTS: £8,460+
Did you know you can access a range of free, useful documentation including spreadsheets, checklists and guides to help you plan your wedding, the RIGHT way?
Deciding which flowers you’d like at your wedding will help you to focus your discussions with your florist, and most importantly, stay within budget.
It always amazes me how much of a difference flowers make to the overall look of a wedding. They are an essential factor of the venue dressing, particularly now that most florists supply decorative fixtures and fittings too.
The first step to finding the perfect blooms is to sit down and put together a list of all the floral elements you could ever possibly need for your wedding day, including your favourite flowers. We’ve made things super easy for you by creating a pre-made checklist.
Not only that, but we’ve also attached a completely free downloadable version of the checklist for you to print off and take along to your florist appointment. So get your pencil out and start ticking off which flowers are the most essential for your wedding day.
Stuck for a professional, reliable florist? We’ve got an extensive list of trustworthy contacts that we’ve worked with all over the North West. Get in touch for some guidance.
Number of daytime guests: Number of evening guests:
Type of preferred flowers:
Bride, Bridesmaids and Flower Girl:
Number of Bridesmaids:
Number of Flower Girls:
□ Bride’s bouquet
□ Bride’s hair flowers
□ Bridesmaids’ bouquets
□ Bridesmaids’ hair flowers
□ Tossing bouquet
□ Flower girl’s basket
Grooms, Groomsmen, Ushers and Ring Bearer:
Number of Groomsmen:
□ Groom’s boutonniere
□ Groomsmen’s boutonnieres
□ Usher’s boutonnieres
□ Ring bearer’s boutonniere
Family Members: □ Mother of the bride’s corsage
□ Mother of the groom’s corsage
□ Father of the bride’s boutonniere
□ Father of the groom’s boutonniere
□ Grandmother’s corsages
□ Grandfather’s boutonnieres
□ Entryway or welcome table arrangements
□ Altar/chuppah arrangements
□ Pew or chair arrangements
□ Aisle decorations
□ Confetti for guests
Reception Flowers: Number of guest tables:
□ Entrance arrangements
□ Bar arrangements
□ Gift table arrangements
□ Table plan arrangement
□ Top table arrangements
□ Bride’s and groom’s chair decorations
□ Guest chair decorations
□ Buffet-table/food-station arrangements
□ Lounge area arrangements
□ Flowers for wedding cake
□ Cake table arrangements
□ Bathroom decorations
□ Getaway car arrangements
One thing you should consider when you buy wedding favours for your guests is if they’ll keep and use them. After all, it’s such a waste of money if your guests are binning the favours as soon as they get home. Here are some of the best wedding favours (I believe) that will make your guests think twice about throwing them away.
A unique stunning wedding tea favour for your guests with a choice of tea carefully packed into a corked bottle. A number of variations are possible with this from the size of the bottle, the type of tea blend, the style of tag and the type of stamp you would like.
These handmade macarons make a yummy wedding favour. Beautifully wrapped in organza bags or small boxes containing 1 or 2 macarons each, you can even personalise your favours with your own personal message and choice of ribbon colour to match your events colour scheme.
Perfect as Wedding favours, this attractive gift set contains 40 beautifully & individually boxed Votive Candles in the ever-popular ‘Wedding Day’ fragrance. Ideal for your guests as a reminder of your big day.
6. Lotto Tickets
Package the lotto tickets up nicely, perhaps in an elegant envelope or paired with a small snack. Giving them on their own may come off tacky because the tickets aren’t very visually appealing.