Wedding

How to Have a Fairytale Wedding

The number of factors that you have to think about when planning your perfect wedding can be overwhelming. From guest lists to dresses, it is easy to forget some of the basics.

Yet, from the menu to the décor, these simple ideas can help to transform your wedding from a day you’d rather forget to a fairytale. Here’s how to have the wedding of your dreams.

How to Have a Fairytale Wedding

Have a Delicious Menu

Everyone loves food at a wedding, and this can put pressure on the bride and groom to prepare the most impressive food possible. While some venues have in-house caterers that can provide a set menu, there are many that do not include these as part of the wedding package.

If you choose to hire a caterer, they can help you to plan your menu and adapt their skills to what you are looking for. When thinking about your menu, you might want to think about more unusual options, such as an ice cream bar or sweet station. You can prepare these within your party if you want to, ensuring that you have full control over the desert. Stations such as these allow your guests to grab a quick snack while on the move, enabling them to chat and interact with each other whilst they eat. This will give your reception a great atmosphere where guests can focus on enjoying themselves.

Common wedding food stations are:

  • A popcorn station
  • Grazing tables, such as an antipasti, fruit, breads and dips
  • S’mores
  • Milk and cookies

You might also want to consider non-traditional cake options such as a cheese wheel cake, not to be confused with cheesecake. Apart from the obvious health benefits, this alternative to fruitcake can be an attention-grabbing centrepiece, decorated with vines and grapes for a natural look.

Transport Fit for Royalty

Riding in style can be one of the most exciting moments of your wedding and make you feel as if you are straight out of a Disney film. If you want to go down the traditional route, a wedding limo might be the best option for you. Limousines can add an extra sense of sophistication to your special day, and they also make a great photo opportunity.

Taking a once-in-a-lifetime trip in a limo also has practicalities such as being able to take you wherever you need to go quickly, and with a GPS. If this sounds like your perfect wedding transport, Allure Limousines is a luxury stretch limo and car hire company that you can trust to get you to the wedding on time, with a service that considers your individual needs before every proposal.

Décor to Die for

When it comes to wedding décor, simplicity is key. For the perfect fairytale wedding, you should aim for a neutral colour scheme such as cream or gold, which will help add elegance to your venue. Your décor, however, should be seamless, and it should suit your overall theme.

Popular ways to decorate your wedding include:

  • Blossom trees
  • Rustic stacked crates
  • Old bottles as vases
  • Greenery garlands

When decorating your venue, you can add interest to your décor by adding hangings and flowers from the ceiling or using decorated table lamps or candles. If you really want to recreate your favourite fairytale, you may even choose chandeliers as your centrepieces, transporting you straight into a Hans Christian Anderson tale.

The top places to propose in Europe this Winter

Planning to propose this Christmas? Where are the best destinations?

The top places to propose in Europe this Winter

10,000 respondents revealed that Christmas Eve was the best day of the year to propose. Some of the reasons for this included ‘magical’, ‘memorable’ and that it is because it’s when the family are all together. Other popular dates to pop the question included the weekends in the run up to Christmas Day.

Many couples decide to take a holiday in festive period too — whether it’s to see family, explore the Christmas markets or simple enjoy a getaway together. So, if you find yourselves in one of the following places over the Christmas period, where would be the perfect backdrop to a proposal? Angelic Diamonds, retailers of diamond rings, have told us their favourite spots…

Grotta Lighthouse, Reykjavik

In recent years, Reykjavik has become a popular winter holiday destination with all visitors. It’s an ideal place to visit with your other half and offers the perfect balance between beautiful landscapes and quirky bars and restaurants.

One unforgettable backdrop to a proposal would be the northern lights, visible from Iceland. The best time to see the lights is from October to March when the sky is clearer so they should be visible on your Christmas trip. You don’t have to book an excursion to see the lights and can often be seen at Grotta lighthouse which is situated outside of downtown Reykjavic where light pollution is low. You can walk here but if you have hired a car, due to the cold temperatures, it could be best to drive to the spot. For a romantic proposal, pop the question outdoors with the lights dancing behind you or for a more private setting, ask the question in the warmth of your car.

There are other festive activities to enjoy here too. You could head to Hafnarfjörður which is around a 20-minute bus ride from downtown Reykjavik to see the Christmas village — complete with handicrafts and live music.

Petřín Hill, Prague

Often Prague is ignored as a city of romance due to its renowned nightlife and attraction to stag and hen parties. However, there are many sights to see in Prague that don’t involve the local pubs and one of these is Petřín Hill.

The hill is surrounded by gardens and you can take a funicular to the top that departs from Ujezd Street in the Malá Strana. On top of the hill there is an observation tower, designed to be a mini version of the Parisian Eiffel Tower where you must climb 299 steps to reach the top to be rewarded with the 360-degree views. You could pop the question in any of the beautiful landscaped gardens or head to a restaurant in Petřín park such as Nebozizek which overlooks the Old Town, Prague Castle, Charles Bridge and Vltava River.

Los Bunkers del Carmel, Barcelona

A hidden gem with a beautiful view is Los Bunkers del Carmel in Barcelona. It is now considered as a viewing platform by many but it was once part of the anti-aircraft battery that was used during the Spanish Civil War.

There are many Christmas markets that are around the city for you to enjoy. For example, the Fira de Santa Llúcia is the market around the Gothic cathedral close to the city centre and there is the Fira de Nadal a la Sagrada Familia from where you can see the unfinished Catholic church, designed by Antoni Gaudí.

There is no transport that takes you to the very top. Instead, you can get the metro to Alfons X and walk 30 minutes from here or you could get the bus from the city centre and take you closer to the top where you will have to walk around 10 minutes. The outstanding view of the city is best at sunrise however, if you and your partner can’t face getting up that early you can head there for sunset instead. With a panoramic view of the city behind you, pop the question to your other half to make it a moment to remember. See photos from a wedding photographer who captured a beautiful moment here.

The Dome, Victoria Square, Belfast

Belfast is well-known for its vast Christmas markets that sit in the grounds of Belfast City Hall. You are not far from more breath-taking views either. Take a trip to the northern coast of Ireland where you can cross the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge with your loved one or retrace the steps of a giant at the causeway. You can visit The Dark Hedges nearby too — a romantic passageway of intertwined trees that were planted in the 18th century and featured on popular TV show, Game of Thrones. Make sure to wrap up though as it’s likely to be chilly here in December!

For an impressive proposal spot, you should head to the top of Victoria Square in the city centre. Here you will find the Dome. Pop the question here for 360-degree views of Belfast as a backdrop, featuring the Prince Albert Clock and Scrabo tower.

Mont Chèry, Val d’Isère, France

Skiing is an exciting winter holiday for couples, and with an extra-long season from the end of November to the first week of May, Val D’Isère is a popular choice of location. There’s jaw-dropping views aplenty as you head to the top of the slopes and are surrounded by outstanding views of the mountains. But, for a proposal you might want to head somewhere warmer where you can enjoy meal and drinks with your other half. One place to do this is at La Grande Ourse, a restaurant situated on Mont Chèry. They offer an authentic fine dining experience where you can get your own personal chauffeur to take you up the mountain in a Kassböhrer (a specialised snow trailer). Here, you can be met with views from an altitude of 1725m and enjoy a five-course meal in the restaurant — a memorable place to get on one knee.

More Britons choose to take their annual skiing holiday here than anywhere else in the world. Part of their popularity lies in their differing slopes — there’s pistes for all abilites and if your other half discovers that skiing is not for them you can head to La Folie Douce (the famous après-ski bar).

5 Great Reasons Why Overseas Weddings Are Better

If organising a wedding is on the cards for you then potential venues and locations might seem practically endless. But why stick with just the UK?

Whether your reasons are romance, a holiday for the whole family or just picture-perfect wedding photos, the overseas wedding is certainly gaining in popularity. So why are overseas weddings the best? I asked destinations wedding expert Michelle Jacobs from Elegante by Michelle J, who has been helping brides organise weddings in the UK and Italy for over 20 years. She explains exactly why Italy will always be her favourite overseas wedding destination.

5 Great Reasons Why Overseas Weddings Are Better

So much to offer

From the ceremony itself to the food and entertainment, when it comes to planning a wedding the last thing you want is to feel limited. For Michelle, she finds Italian weddings are often so popular because there are more opportunities to get exactly what you want. She says: “Italy has so much to offer – from spectacular scenery and the opportunity for an outdoor wedding ceremony and reception to fantastic food. Brides tell me they want their guests to leave saying it was not just the best wedding ever – but the food was brilliant. Far too often poor food is a complaint of the traditional English wedding. And of course, Italy is the most romantic country in the world so why not cement your love there.

Bringing guests together

With destination weddings come overnight stays and even excursions, Michelle believes this can lead to a bond that your guests will never forget. She says: “A destination wedding brings your guests together over the course of 2 or 3 days, rather than just for the wedding day itself; guests connect in a way that they would not generally do at a local wedding, and it really does show in the atmosphere on the wedding day itself.  The vibe is palpable, guests have formed bonds and friendships simply by being present at this special occasion and this leads to a wonderful and momentous celebration. By being together over more than one day it gives the bride and groom the opportunity to spend quality time with all of their guests, rather than just the couple of minutes per person that they would get if they were getting married at home.”

Local wedding traditions

There’s a reason why destination weddings in Italy in particular are increasing. Michelle thinks homegrown customs create a magical experience that will be unique to the couple. She says: “The opportunity to incorporate local wedding traditions (such as the spectacular Italian MilleFoglie wedding cake) as well as your own traditions is often something my brides tell me is important. But equally you can get away with leaving out those traditions which are not important to you, so the choice really is yours.”

Stunning photos and great venues

In the UK, couples often think that they are stuck between a church or a civil ceremony, but there are plenty of other destinations to declare your love for each other. Michelle knows a few! She says, “From desolate beaches to Shakespearian balconies, there are lots of opportunities available as wedding rules vary from country to country. In Italy, with its ornate town halls and gorgeous churches your photographer will really be spoiled for great shots. Plus, with a wedding overseas you’ve got more chance of predicting the weather than in the rainy/cloudy/drizzly UK!”

Control

With a UK wedding it becomes very easy for additional voices to make themselves heard. But with an overseas wedding there’s no pressure to invite Aunt Val’s cousin once removed, it’s the people that matter to you most who can join you. Michelle says, “Lots of people think that an overseas wedding is running away, but it’s actually you taking back control. People will soon respect your wishes when they know that there is a lot of planning that goes in to the big day, but when you’re local it gets all too easy to take on everyone’s opinion, which can be incredibly overwhelming for any bride.”

There you have it, an expert’s views, just 5 of the reasons why an overseas wedding, and Italy in particular, is best.