Ever heard of the saying ‘your wedding, your rules?’ Well, that doesn’t just apply to...
Today I would like to introduce you to a wonderful company with a fabulous new concept that I think you are going to LOVE! Faye Darcy, set up Pop Up Weddings last year. It provides a range of all-inclusive two-hour marriage, or vow-renewal ceremony packages, where couples basically just show up and get married.
Faye took inspiration for the idea after working in Australia in 2015 where the concept is already very popular. She said: ‘Pop up weddings are a simple and elegant alternative to the more traditional wedding. Couples literally pop in to the wedding venue, get married then pop out!’
So if you are newly engaged or finding the whole wedding planning journey super stressful and you want an easier option, then read on!
What is a pop-up wedding?
You basically just show up, if you don’t want the stress and the cost of a traditional wedding its perfect! They really are perfect for couples who simply don’t have the cash to have a no expense spared wedding and have other priorities such as travel or house deposits. Not everyone loves wedding planning, or have the time do to do it. People don’t often realise how much time and effort goes in to it all, the stress from the planning can totally take away the enjoyment for the couple. We find some quirky venues, an amazing photographer, a celebrant who is all about you, a creative stylist and florist and a fabulous cake designer, get them all together so you can have your 2 hour dream wedding and enjoy every minute of it then head of to celebrate in whichever way you like be it a picnic in the local park, an intimate dinner or a large party!
Big traditional weddings aren’t for everyone. A lot of the time people get so caught up in the photobooths and candy carts, the guestlists, who’s going to sit next to whom, worry too much about trying to keep everyone else happy that the real reasons get put aside. Pop-Up weddings are all about the couple and the love and commitment they have for one another.
Where did pop-up weddings come from?
The trend started in the states a few years ago. It then swept across Australia and has taken off massively over the last 18 months.
Is it a legally binding ceremony?
Some of the venues I use will be licensed which means a registrar will be present and it will be legally binding but I want couples to think outside of the box, to think of places that mean something to them both, venues and locations that they never thought they would be able to hold their ceremony at due to licensing. Unfortunately, due to English laws it isn’t legal to get married just anywhere but don’t let that put you off. By using a civil celebrant for our ceremonies it means that you receive a much more personal ceremony and have the freedom to do it wherever you wish to. All it means is that you would have to go to your local registry office at a time convenient to yourselves to register your marriage before or after your pop-up ceremony. There is no legal requirement to exchange rings at the registry office, most people tend to do this in a casual manner in their jeans with two witnesses and save the rings for their ‘real ceremony’. The way we see it, is that if you were to have a child you need to register the birth, if you lose a loved one you need to register the death. This also makes it a great concept for people who would like to renew their vows or to have a commitment ceremony rather than a legally binding marriage as they do not have to register it if they do not wish to.
What made you start your business?
After working in the Australian wedding industry in 2015 I fell in love with the pop-up wedding concept so much that I wanted to bring it home with me! I was so inspired by the way they did things over there, the style, the whole feel to the more relaxed wedding and it being totally focused on the couple rather than the things that take it away from what it’s really like. I want to offer the millennial generation an alternative to the traditional wedding, something fresh, fun and affordable but preserving all of the style and quality you would expect, just without the high stress levels and big bill at the end of it!
In our modern world the average cost of a wedding is rising, yet with increased outgoings, student loans, it being so hard to get on the property ladder, 5 year engagements are becoming a lot more common. Do couples really want to spend £20,000 on a wedding? So many people I speak to would rather invest it in more practical ways, a deposit for a house of seeing more of this amazing world. At the end of the day, your wedding is about the two of you and the love and commitment you have for one another, you don’t need to spend that kind of money for it to be amazing and to show that!
When did you start?
I spent 2015 planning and coordinating pop-up weddings in Australia. Since my return home I have been planning, coordinating and styling weddings and events in the North East as well as getting everything in place to launch as ‘Faye Darcy Pop-Up Weddings’ in May.
Where are you based?
I’m based in Newcastle upon Tyne but I love travelling around the UK. I’m always on the search for beautiful venues and locations as well as more wonderful wedding suppliers to collaborate with. If you aren’t located in the North East but would love a pop-up wedding, vow renewal or commitment ceremony I can still make this happen for you!
What sort of geographical area do you cover?
What were you doing before?
I was a hairdresser for 6 years then decided I wanted a career change but wasn’t sure what, around this time I was offered to work for family being an admin/accounts and marketing assistant for a software company so I took it just to try something totally different. I decided that a 9-5 office job wasn’t really for me but I did enjoy planning conferences which was part of my role. I missed meeting new people and the satisfaction of making them feel good and helping them achieve what they wanted. I have always been a creative person and super organised so I wanted a career which would allow me to fuse these together. Around 3 years ago my mum asked me what my dream job would be and my reply was a wedding planner, realising that this wasn’t going to just come to me I made the first steps by enrolling for an International wedding and event planning qualification then it spiraled from there!
What is your biggest achievement so far?
Launching as the first Pop-Up Wedding Company in the UK has got to be up there!
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I love being able to offer couples the freedom to have their ceremony in places they didn’t think they could without being restricted to licensed venues. There’s so much pleasure in speaking to a couple, seeing them getting excited and being inspired by my ideas rather than being stressed over all of the planning and how much it is going to cost them. Then of course seeing how happy and content they are on their big day knowing that I’ve been a huge part of it and brought it to reality for them.
What sort of couple do you think you attract?
The pop-up wedding concept may not be for everyone but it is for; couples who would like a much more personal ceremony, people who have been previously married, couples wanting to renew their vows, same sex couples. Couples who are adventurous and spontaneous, maybe they will have a pop-up wedding then surprise their friends with a #justmarried post! People who would love a luxury ceremony but without the big price tag.
What would be your ideal wedding to work on?
Anything that is intimate and so personal to the couple, in a location that already holds many memories for them.
Can you give me some information on your pricing structure?
I have brought together a collective of some of the North East’s best wedding suppliers to offer two basic packages; Pop-Up Events in which I set a date, book a venue and offer 3 ceremony times for a 2 hour pop-up, essentially the costs are split between 3 couples making it more affordable. The package includes: Venue Hire, Civil Celebrant, Venue Styling, A photographer with at least 150 digital images, A 7 inch round semi naked cake, A bridal bouquet and button hole and a champagne toast for the happy couple. This package starts from under £2200 depending on the venue.
I also offer a Private Pop-Up Package in which a couple will choose their own date and venue and we take the pop-up package to them. This package includes the same as the pop-up event but without the venue hire cost. All packages can then be added to for example, an upsized cake, more florals, more photography, catering etc. We are happy to tailor all packages to each couple’s needs.
What is your ideal way to spend a day off?
I very rarely have a day off..or at least I don’t switch off! I’m a sucker for the simple things in life so spending time with loved ones, a walk along the coast or in the countryside stopping at pretty tearooms for some yummy cake!
What can you never leave the house without?
My notepad and phone. Although I hate to be on my phone all the time I take photos everywhere I go, I’m always on the lookout for new possibilities to pop-up at and visualising what I could do with them!
What would you do if you won the lottery?
I would love to buy a venue to have as a pop-up venue! Of course I would do some travelling too, there’s so much I still want to see in this amazing world.