Hello and welcome this weeks edition of my Christmas Gift Guide. With Christmas day exactly...
This year has been a shocking one, I think we can all agree on that. Even more so if you had planned a wedding in 2020. This has been the year of postponements, cancellations and a whole lot of re-arranging. However, there have been a few couples who have stuck to their plans and decided to get married despite the pandemic. Many of these couples have had their plans changed, re-arranged and moved about, with new restrictions coming in each week. A Covid wedding couple have had to be adaptable, resilient and determined. But you know what? Loves does conquer all! Weddings have happened this year, all be it a fraction of the amount we normally see, but those that have happened have been joyous affairs, a celebration of love and a HUGE finger up to Covid!
On the blog today I have invited wedding hair specialist Jennie. She is here to tell us her experience with the whole lockdown, how her business has been effected and how the lovely brides she has worked with this year got on with their wedding and what amazing celebrations they have been. With her experience she is also here to give us some top tips for a lockdown micro wedding and to reassure you that Covid weddings really can be as amazing as a normal wedding.
Back in March when the government rolled out the new regulations many Brides started scrambling to change their weddings to new dates in 2021 before too many of these were snapped by other couples wanting to marry next year.
Couples were panicking and wondering what to do. However some had decided to hold on in there, in hope that they’d still be able to wed in 2020, and were eagerly awaiting the governments next moves.
I’m here to tell you about the Brides that stayed with their 2020 wedding dates, the Brides that went with the “covid lockdown wedding” and how they still managed to have an amazing day even after all the stress they were under.
So obviously when the government brought out the new regulations I reached out to all my Brides with “how can I help you” and “what do you need from me?” The cry of “can you please book me into 2021” was thunderous and many suppliers found themselves in situations were they were being stretched to accommodate each and every one of their couples as best they could but 20221 dates were filling up very fast especially with double & triple bookings.
Legally we weren’t allowed any weddings in the UK until the 4th July. I had a bride potentially going through with their wedding day on 4th July but in the end it was the venue that made the decision to postpone.
My first wedding after lockdown was the 11th July and I was previously booked with another Bride on this date, so it was actually one of my lucky team who got to style the lovely Melonie as she decided to go ahead with her wedding on this magical day.
Melanie and her husband went ahead and made the whole day all about Fun!
They actually got married and went down to Southend pier for their reception. The images were incredible and she’s now looking forward me styling her hair for part 2 of their wedding plans next year.
Personally my first wedding was in August and I had three in 1 week!! This was a really testing time for these Brides as on the build up to their special days you could only have a ceremony with 30 guests but sadly you couldn’t have a reception. By the time we reached the week of these weddings this rule had already changed so they could have had a reception but it was simply too late to change all the finer details so late in the day. It was time for my brides to get creative!!
One bride had a beautiful ceremony and a function room to celebrate with her guests afterwards, another decided on a small marquee in her garden before the rules changed yet again to stop garden receptions. My last bride got even more creative & booked a barn for the family to stay in overnight. They decorated the barn out as you would with a wedding venue and had a fabulous time celebrating all together.
September weddings had to adapt to new updated rules yet again. One of my brides wed in a church and had a small venue booked which had to be changed last minute to only 6 guests per table.
Another had her social distanced meal at the hotel where she was married. And just last week I had one of the first weddings in the UK of just 15 people!!
Now this is a hard one for brides to really understand to go from 30 guests to just 15. Her family living so far away she decided that they are going to do it anyway.
I arrived with my bride on Saturday morning and it had been pouring with rain constantly so I really felt for her, especially as she’d already had such a tough job to limit her wedding guests to a mere 15 .
But when I arrived she was happy and excited and nervous… all of the natural emotions that you feel on your wedding day!
She messaged me after the wedding to tell me that she really enjoyed every moment and the whole ceremony had been live streamed to her family in Mexico so although they weren’t there in spirit, they had still been there to watch everything from a distance.
They all got dressed up to join her on her wedding day which I thought was so thoughtful! Like many brides she will be having a part 2 of her wedding celebrations next year in the form of a big party for everyone to come and enjoy!
It allows you to strip things back to the raw basics & the very core values of why you actually are getting married.
When you start to strip down your wedding and you lose out on guests if you have a large family, you begin to question how many extra guests have you been persuaded by other family to arrive on your wedding day and potentially you’ve only seen these people once or twice in your whole entire lifetime.
Let me tell you that the micro weddings might around for some time yet and it’s not one size fits all. If you have postponed then that’s your personal choice there are many reasons but the key to a lockdown wedding is to make it feel intimate and personal just to you two!
Every Bride I have styled this year has not regretted getting married and that’s the important thing!
So what’s a covid lockdown wedding like? Does it feel clinical?
Not at all! The only thing that was different was everyone being asked to wear masks which… let’s face it, is the new norm now anyway!
Having been involved with 8 intimate and beautiful weddings since lockdown, I felt like I would like to let you know the facts and feelings at each one.
They have all messaged me afterwards to tell me how the day went.
In my 15 years of being in the wedding industry I have styled hundreds of brides and while each and everyone is special to me, these lockdown weddings are something else… they feel like rare jewels, so precious to me in a time where I had 70-odd weddings year these lockdown weddings will now stay with me forever.
1) Make it look pretty; soft drapes, lighting, flowers, lanterns & accessories finish off and completey transform a space.
2) Upgrade; you can afford if you want to swap that prosecco for champagne. You could also add those luxury touches like coordinating masks for the bridesmaids made out of natural quality materials.
3) Make it fun; my brides have had masks and hand sanitiser as mini favours for their guests. One bride had two figures on top of her cake wearing face masks.
4) Cake; Still have your cake you could have a smaller one for your micro wedding or keep a large one and send it out to the guests that can’t be with you.
5) Live stream your wedding; you can get everyone dressed and be a part of it. Like those zoom parties we had at the beginning of lockdown.
6) Wear your dress twice. So many brides say that they would love to have the opportunity to wear their dress twice. Now you really can!
7) Hair and Makeup pamper. Its always nice to have your hair & makeup done but especially now. You could even opt for a slightly different look for part 1 and 2 of your special day.
8) The stress is off. Once you’re married you can decide to have a blessing next year with your guests or just one big Party!!!!
9) Something to get excited about. Nothing quite lifts the spirits like a wedding, true it’s not going to be quite the same as before, but in truth nothing is .
10) What an amazing story you will be telling your grandchildren in the future. Noone will ever forget your wedding day.
Well that would be one hell of a way to make yours memorable.
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