What is the Giving Away of the Bride?…..Who does it?

The giving away of the bride is a very traditional aspect of a wedding, during which a father walks the bride down the aisle and hands her over to her soon to be husband.

The giving away is very symbolic in many cultures, as the bride leaving one family and joining another, this is further symbolized through the bride changing her surname to her groom’s surname.

Breaking Tradition  

Weddings are not as traditional as they used to be. Many couples are choosing to break the traditional mold and create a ceremony that is wholly there own. This is the beauty of having a registered marriage celebrant conduct your ceremony, they can create a ceremony that is tailored to fit the brides and grooms wants and needs.

Who can give me away?

Many brides choose the traditional path and have their father give them away, some brides choose to have both their parents walk them down the aisle.

However, weddings are so versatile now there are no stead fast rules regarding who gives the bride away. In reality the bride does not even have to be given away at all, some brides opting to walk down the aisle alone.

Anyone can give a bride away, parents, grandparents, best friend, sibling or child. It is a fantastic way to incorporate children into the marriage ceremony especially in a blended family situation.

Final Word

During the planning stage of your wedding ceremony, the decision should be made on who, if anyone will be giving you away. This allows yourself and the celebrant to look at the best option for your ceremony regarding, wording, seating arrangements, speeches, music etc.

It is important that you do what you feel is best for yourself, your partner and your special day. Your family and friends will respect I you would like to do something different or outside the norm.

Weddings and Children! Should Children be invited to your wedding?

One of the biggest topics that are debated between brides and families is the topic of children. Should children be at the wedding? How old is classified an adult to be included? Can you invite one child and not the other?  Is is a hot topic and one rough with disagreement and personal opinions.

Modern Family

More and more couples waiting to get married, opting for a house and a family before taking the walk down the aisle.

There has also been a rise in two individuals with children marrying creating a blended family.

These two point have lead to new ideas in the importance of children at weddings.

Traditional Weddings

Traditionally children are involved in the wedding as flower girls and Paige boys, they may be part of the ceremony, but many people opt to no invite children to the reception part of the day.

Many couples justifying this by stating it is a long day, children get tired and this could lead to tantrums of tired children at the reception. This is still a consensus amongst couples today. Fearing that their day may be ruined by crying children, or children running around during speeches, or the ceremony itself.

Children in the Wedding

It is great to have children in your wedding party, or part of the ceremony in some capacity. They are an important part of the family and can feel excluded if they are not called upon to take part.

There are many rituals that can take place that involve whole families to some capacity. This can include sand ceremony, where each person takes a different colored sand and pours it into a bottle, symbolizing the coming together of the family as one. This can also be done with colored stones, a toy such as Lego the options are endless.

Flower girls and Paige boys are also still widely used, but provisions can be made to ensure the children are more comfortable, this includes having chairs for them in the front row to sit on at the ceremony instead of having them stand.

Some brides also choose to have their children walk them down the aisle. This is especially great if there are no surviving parents of the bride and the child is old enough. This could be a significant part of the child’s life as the child feels they have a say as they agreed to ‘give’ their mother away.

Children at the Reception

This is a hot topic, many brides are opting for a child free wedding, others only inviting children part of the immediate family, or those in the wedding party.

It is your choice if you would like children at the wedding or not.

Personally when I was planning my wedding I worried of having children, I spoke to some of my guests who have children and the response I got was overwhelmingly supportive. I never thought of it, but many parents may opt to leave their children at home on the day of the wedding as it is a special day out for the parents and they would like to relax and enjoy the day, not have to worry about their children causing problems.

There are a few points to consider when inviting children such as:

  • Number limitations at the wedding
  • Length and place of ceremony and reception
  • Table places
  • Age of the children
  • Number of children within a family                                                                                                                  (If there is a family of 4 children all 4 children should or should not be invited)

If you choose to have children at your wedding there are a few considerations that you can make in order to subside fears of children running a muck, or causing disruptions during the key events of the day:

  • Have a child’s table or some people choose to have a children’s room with coloring books, pencils and activities
  • Hiring an entertainer to entertain the children such as face painting, balloon animals etc.
  • Hire a babysitter to look after the children
  • Have the children eat during the important speeches at the reception
  • While the parents are eating, have children’s song playing that the children can dance to or a game for them to play like musical freeze
  • Have an age limit for children that you are inviting? Some brides will invite teenagers but not younger children as teenagers can observe the etiquette of event.

Final Thought

Children can bring joy and laughter to any occasion, but they can also be tired and upset due to the day being so long.

It is you choice if you would like children to or not to attend your wedding. Once you have made your decision be firm, do not be swayed by others opinions, your family and friends should honor and respect your choice.

Big Wedding? Small Wedding? What is the right Wedding Size for your day?

How big should my wedding be, who should be there? How will I make everyone happy? Wedding Size is one of the biggest questions and decisions a couple need to make and there are a number of factors that will need to be considered.


Some points that need to be considered when making a decision of about you wedding is:

  • Cultural Beliefs and Religious Beliefs                                                                                                                     Some cultures and religions have certain ceremonies and rituals that need to be completed  as part of a wedding ceremony. This may require a certain number of individuals to be present or at least key individuals such as parents, grandparents and children.
  • Family Tradition                                                                                                                                                         Some families may have there own rituals or traditions that need to be completed as part of the wedding which alike to cultural and religious beliefs may call for certain people to be present.
  • Family Size and closeness                                                                                                                                      How big is your family? even if you choose to have a ceremony that only family is invited to it may still be a big wedding due to the largeness of your family. An alternative would be only inviting immediate family or key family members that you are very close to and have a bond with.
  • Friendships                                                                                                                                                        Consider your friendship circle and how many friends that you have that you cannot get married without vs those you feel you need to invite because they are part of your group but you may not be close to.
  • Financial Constraints                                                                                                                                             Set yourself a budget, this can really help with making a decision on how may attendees you  can have at your wedding should you choose to have any. Remember legally you do need to have two witnesses present at the ceremony.

Overall you need to take into the highest consideration you and your partners wants, needs and wishes.

You both may have to make some compromises on what you want for your wedding day for you partner but once you make a decision on attendee’s size, where you are hoping to get married and the date stick to it, don’t allow family members and friends to influence your decision. It is your day and it should be what your partner and yourself want. Your friends and family should support and respect your decisions no matter what they are.

Key Points to help with Wedding Size

  • Both the Bride and Groom should write separate lists of those they want to attend the wedding then combine to see how many of the same guests that you have. It may be surprising that you both have an idea of how many guests you need but when you combine your lists you find that the number is significantly lower due to having the same guests
  • Do not allow plus ones. This can easily double your guest list and may not create the intimate wedding that you were hoping to create, as strangers are in attendance
  • When booking a ceremony location and/or a reception location consider the maximum number of guests permitted. Hiring a room that can host 80 will help restrict the number of guests you can invite which will be helpful when making decisions.
  • Be very clear on invitations who you are inviting. Do not write ‘Hemish Family’, write individual names, this will stop accidental guests from attending
  • Make a decision if you would or would not like children in attendance. It is up to you if you would like all children in attendance, just children involved in the ceremony or no children but when it comes down to numbers children can quickly take up free spaces you may have. Some spaces and types of ceremony it may also not be the best idea for children to attend.

Last Words

A wedding is a magnificent, loving, happy occasion and it is up to yourself as the bride and groom the size of the ceremony and reception. To have a clear idea of you partner and you idea of your wedding day it is best to sit down and create a plan including, budget, guest numbers and location. Remember it is your wedding do it your way. Don’t let others influence your decisions and choices.

What time should I write on my Wedding Invitation?

The creation of your wedding invitation is an adventure within itself. There are so many choices: what type of paper to use, what type of design, colours and wording. But one of the most important questions that I am getting asked is what time to write on the invitations.

The Importance of The Time on The Invitation.

The time on the invitation should signify the time the guests should arrive. There are many points to consider regarding what time to put down some of these include:

  • Lighting, you need to ensure there is enough time to take photos outside after the ceremony if that is what you wish to do.
  • You also need to make sure that there is enough time for guests to arrive and be settled before the start of the ceremony so be aware of opening times of the venue. Also be aware of the closing time of the venue as you do not want to rushed out at the conclusion
  • Furthermore you should also be aware of the general weather forecasts of the day and your venue. If you are getting married in summer and its outdoors you may choose to get married earlier in the day as that is cooler in the afternoon. This might be more comfortable for your guests, and your wedding party.

What Time Should I Write?

It is best to write a time 30 minutes before the bride is set to walk down the aisle. It is also best to write something next to this time such as sharp or promptly. An example of this would be is a bride was due to walk down the aisle at 3pm the invitation would read 2pm Sharp. This will alert guests to the importance of being timely but also allow 30 minutes of time allowance to ensure the guests are settled by the appropriate time.

Other Key Points for Consideration

If there is a venue that is hard to find or that parking may be difficult to find it may be best to include an insert into the invitation explaining how to get to the venue or where to find parking. Adding a key contact that can explain this will also be beneficial in ensuring that the guests arrive on time.

It may also be best to look into ways to alert guests of any last minutes changes such as wet weather plans. There are apps and websites that can assist with sending out SMS’s or recording a phone message that guests can ring up and hear on the morning. An explanation of this may also be beneficial to some weddings if you were having an outdoor wedding and fear of rain.

Last Thoughts

Sit down and plan out your day. It doesn’t have to be step by step but a rough outline will be great as it will show you how much time you really have to complete tasks such as the ceremony and photos.

Remember the bride should be the only person fashionably late to your wedding.


My Family Can’t Make It To My Wedding, But Can They See It?

Weddings are such and exciting time for the couples, friends and family, however it can also be a time of sadness.

I know it does sound weird to hear how can a wedding be sad?

With more opportunities to travel and work becoming available, moving interstate and abroad are becoming increasingly popular.

As your wedding day approaches it may be discovered that many family members cannot be with you on your special day for a number of reasons including illness, being frail, unable to travel or finances leaving important figures such as grandparents and parents unable to attend.

This can lead to feelings of loneliness and sadness on your wedding day. But this does not have to be the case.

What can I do?

You do have options to enable your loved ones to see the ceremony even if they are not physically present.

You can opt to have a two weddings, a ceremony where you plan too and a second ceremony where your family are. This can also be a good option if there are traditions or rituals relating to you family as you can have to different types of ceremonies.

You can send photos and videos after the ceremony. Although these are great memories it still does mean they are absent on the day.

Phone calls are also a great option to enable individuals to hear the ceremony, however the recipient of the call will not be able to see the ceremony.

Skype or FaceTime are your best options, as these services stream live video and audio to the recipients. This will enable everyone no matter where they are in the world or their situation to be able to see and hear the ceremony in real time.

Final Word:

Remember it is your day, and it is your choice what way you would like to bring your family together, but please remember that technology has made it a lot easier to stay connected and share the important moments in your life.

Breaking Tradition: Can I see my Bride before the aisle walk?

During the time you are planning your wedding you may hear from older generations in your family or from the shop attendant you are buying your dress from that it is ‘bad luck for a Groom to see the Bride before the wedding.’

Crazy right? You have spent years getting to know a person, seeing them almost every day; and you have now agreed to spend the rest of your life with them; only to be told its bad luck to see them. You may ask the person why, and the only response that you may be given is ‘It’s tradition.’ Well the real reason why is the crazy it belongs on Ripley’s Believe it or Not.

Where does this tradition come from? 

This tradition, stems from the days when arranged marriages were the norm. As the parents of the bride and groom would organize everything, neither of the couple would meet before the big day. It was considered bad luck to see the bride before she walks down the aisle as parents feared the Groom would not find her attractive and would back out of the wedding.

So really, what is now considered tradition was really just a ploy by parents to make sure that the arranged marriage went ahead.

Can I break tradition?

These days many couples still stick with tradition spending the night before apart from each other, usually with family or their bridal or groom’s party. Only seeing each other again when the Bride walks down the aisle.

However, It is becoming more common to break tradition opting to have your photographer capture the first moments photos. This is a very private and emotional time and create some truly beautiful photos. Couples are also using the time before the wedding to spend with heir bridal party getting all their photos taken, so they can spend more time with their guests and go from the ceremony straight to the reception.

Final thoughts……

It’s your wedding day, your choice. What would you like to do? Yes, you may need to make some considerations, such as family beliefs or religious beliefs but first and foremost this is your day.  You may decide to wake up next to your partner on your wedding day or you may want to see your partner for the first time on your special day as your walking down the aisle. The important thing to remember is that you and your partner create the rules to personalise your special day.

Technology Free Wedding? Yes or No?

So everyone has seen that the new IPhone announcement was made today. What a perfect time to sit back and think about the impact that technology may have on your Wedding day.

A wedding day is a very special day for not only the Bride and Groom but their family and friends. It is a major milestone in a persons life and with the easy access to technology it is only natural that people utilise their smart phones to take as many photos and videos as possible for memories sake.

Something to consider is an Unplugged Wedding. This is a new trend which the bride and groom ask guests to unplug for the ceremony or the entire wedding and enjoy the celebration. This means no phones and no cameras, which can be a scary concept for some, especially those of the younger generation.

But think about it for a minute, you are going through one of the most special moments of your life. You are going to be walking down the isle and declaring your love for your partner. When you are looking out over the crowd of your family and friends would you like to see smiling faces, or the back of phones and constant flash?

Something to also consider is that you hired a photographer and possibly a videographer to capture these special moments. This is their craft and although I cannot speak for them, I have heard many photographs express their frustrations that there photos may have come out better, of you could see faces instead of devices.

If you do wish to have an unplugged wedding it is best to let your Celebrant know as they will be more then happy to make an announcement such as:

“Welcome to you one and all on this very special occasion. As this is such a great occasion, Justine and Chris invite you to be truly present. Please turn of all mobile phone and cameras. We have a photographer and videographer today to catch all those key moments, that will make a lifetime of memories. Please sit back relax and help both Justine and Chris celebrate this momentous occasion.”

A quick request but a strong message to ensure that guest are aware of the Bride and Grooms wishes

The Unplugged Wedding is not for everyone. If you are choosing to allow your guests to take photos and/or video there are a few key things that should be considered:

  • No Flash Photography (at least for the guests), nothing will be worse then not being able to see guests or your way down the isle because of the constant flashes
  • No guests should post photos on social media prior to the wedding ceremony. The last thing you want is to see your soon to be bride and groom in a photo before the big reveal.

Be aware that guests can take some amazing and funny photos and there are some great apps out there that will allow the sharing and storing of all the photos from your wedding reception.

It’s your wedding and your day however technology does not necessarily have to be part of it. It’s your choice so have it your way.