Planning a UK wedding is an exciting but detailed task. It’s not until you start to look into what’s involved that you realise that you’re going to need ninja planning skills and a good team around you. If you’re recently got engaged then Congratulations, and then welcome to the rather large job of planning the wedding.
With recent changes to global travel, small weddings are back in the UK and more and more people are now considering a fully UK-based wedding with UK honeymoon to boot. It’s possibly the safer bet for the next few months or years and also a really great option, too.
If you're planning a UK wedding then here’s some of the big areas to get into your wedding planner!
Start here. I know it’s not romantic, but seriously, you have to start with a budget. This is a project you’re planning and no project planner worth their salt enters into planning without first knowing the budget. Your budget will need to be set out right at the start and it must be a budget that’s flexible. Things change, and other ideas crop up, so your budget needs to be fluid.
Some prefer a spreadsheet; others opt for more modern project management tools like Trello or Monday.com. Whatever you choose, make sure it’s easy to access and shareable. Ideally, you’ll want a good team around you to plan your dream UK wedding.
The location and venue are a big part of your wedding planning and also will demand the largest chunk of your budget. Where will you get married? Are you planning to be wed in your local village church, dreaming about outdoors farm and barn weddings or wishing to travel to that special place you’ve always wanted to get married in? Or perhaps you're having two weddings (a sequel wedding) or you have no idea and you need to go and visit some possible venues.
The venue is the next best place to work on after the budget as it not only demands a high proportion of your pot, but you’ll need ‘The date’ from them, too!
If you’re inviting friends and family, then you’d better get a date, and fast. Securing the date (and venue) as early as possible is really important so that you can give everyone the best chance to be there.
With work arrangements, holidays, school holidays, and childcare to name just a few – the date needs to be far enough ahead to give everyone the opportunity to make or change plans. Get the budget sorted and then head to those UK wedding venues. We have some stunning wedding venues in Warwickshire but they do get booked up fast, especially as 2021 looks to be a bumper year!
Choose Your Bridal Party
Planning an event like a wedding isn’t for the faint-hearted and it isn’t a task for just one, either. Get a solid team around you. This can be a team on both sides too with most modern day weddings involving both partners getting involved in the planning process. Choosing the right people to have by your side will be important.
Don’t just choose your favourite friends. Choose the organised, reliable ones! We know this will be tough, but we know planning is tough, too. Make sure you have a few choice planners in your squad to carry the ‘besties’ that you’ll have to pick (just don’t let on to them that you’ve done that!).
Guests, and especially bridal party selection, will come down to budget, relationships, and a good measure of emotional upheaval at times. Welcome to wedding planning!
The UK Weather
Ok, let’s discuss the rather soggy elephant in the room. The UK weather will be the downside (at times) when planning a UK wedding. Sure, the Maldives is more likely to give you guaranteed weather, but your budget or travel preferences might not allow for it so let’s be pragmatic about this.
- If you’re planning a marquee wedding – think about cold evenings.
- If you're thinking about outdoors or barn weddings – check what's included and if catering equipment and kitchen hire is required.
- If you’re having a church wedding, have a rain contingency for the outside photos.
- Planning on a long drive from the wedding itself to the wedding breakfast? Maybe an open top car might need a top that can be pulled up… Just in case!
Make sure that your wedding plans are UK weatherproof. It’s very changeable here. May and September are often a safer bet than July… but that will probably be wrong next year in 2021, right?!
Your Wedding Theme
Let’s get creative. Your wedding theme will set so much of your wedding in place that it’s hard to imagine not having one. From those first initial “save the date” invites to the chair covers and table linen, the wedding theme is a core part of the planning that needs nailing down at the start.
Looking for some inspiration? Check out our guide to planning your wedding theme.
From the dress to the bridal party, you’ll need to put some budget aside for the outfits and you might want to consider the time of year when you do it, too. Even a warm summer’s day in the UK can get a chill later on so think about shawls or long coats that compliment your outfit rather than drown it.
Getting a fitting date booked and planned ahead is important too, especially for the guys who do tend to find better things to do than get measured up for a wedding suit. Plan early here and plan for that UK weather.
Planning a barn wedding? What does your dress look like with some wellies? Are those high heels or painted shoes going to cut it later in the day?
With your theme and venue firmly locked in, you’ll be able to get planning your food. Depending on where you’re having the wedding breakfast you might be able to choose food to match your theme, or you could be limited with a hotel menu.
Either way, choosing the food in the UK shouldn’t be too taxing, but we would certainly ensure there’s tea and coffee in the mix and that you go for food that the majority of your guests will eat and offer a dietary option, too.
Getting married in the winter? Consider some more warming food, especially if you’re opting for a marquee.
Essential? Of course. No wedding is complete without a toast to the happy couple or some evening drinks to help lubricate the dancing! Choosing the drinks is important and it will depend on your theme, your venue, and what you choose for your wedding breakfast menu.
Need help planning your wedding drinks? We’ve got you covered.
Planning a UK Honeymoon
It’s possible that this will be the biggest change to weddings in the UK after 2020. Travel isn’t as guaranteed or as simple as it used to be and for the foreseeable future it might be more wise to opt for a UK honeymoon over an overseas one.
There are some stunning places to visit in the UK and you might be surprised at the options if you’ve only ever considered abroad to be a holiday. From the Lake and Peak District to stunning areas on the highlands, The Cotswolds, or right down to Devon or the ever-popular Cornwall, the UK has some stunning honeymoon locations.
No matter where or when you get married, wedding insurance is a good plan. You never know what will happen in the future (2020 is certainly an example of that, not that Pandemic cover tends to be A Thing) so put something in place to cover the costs, should the unexpected happen.
Make sure you know what you’re covered for and ask if you’re unsure. With ‘acts of God’ not always being covered, you might want to shop around and find insurance that suits your UK wedding should floods or heavy winds turn your dream day into a bit of a nightmare.
Wedding catering hire
Have a marquee wedding or hiring the local village hall for the day? Make sure you get the right catering hire equipment organised so that the food and drinks can be prepared, served, seated, and enjoyed.
Give us a call now or put a quote together. We’d love to be a part of your UK wedding.