As the real threat of climate change is never far for the fore, just look at the horrific out of control bush fires that Australia are currently suffering; it falls to each and every one of us to take responsibility for our own choices and actions. This includes wedding planning and the wedding industry as a whole.
I make no apology for my love of weddings. Some may argue a unnecessary tradition in today’s modern world.
But I cannot ignore that as a whole the wedding industry can be a fairly wasteful one. The majority of items can be classed as ‘single use’ and with the average cost of weddings rising each year couples look to source the cheapest items, which are often mass produced, aren’t sustainabley sourced and have poor recycle ability. For example are you aware of how plastic is in your wedding dress??
As a bride working within a fairly stringent budget myself I understand the need, pressure and stress associated with organizing the ‘perfect’ wedding.
But at what cost to the environment not to mention your wallet?
Having taken part in Tent:Talks at the Spring Showcase earlier this year on collaboration with Timber and Canvas and Cotswold Field of Dreams, there seemed to be equal measure of those wanting to purchase everything sparkly and new and those who were happy to source preloved items.
Its those that aren’t comfortable utilising preloved items that I want to challenge – why the unease? and what do we need to do as an industry to break this taboo?
Equally we need to make it easier for couples to source sustainable and preloved items – I’m hoping the launch of our new online marketplace will help with this!
To reiterate a common hashtag – #thereisnoplanetB and we all have a duty and responsibility to care for and nurture this planet regardless.
Stay tuned to find out how we plan to do our bit in the Wedding Industry and hopefully encourage other both couples and suppliers to do the same
Reposting from the archives today….. as couples look for ways to make the budget stretch further, would you skill swap your wedding? Here’s what happened when one bride did…..
I am always intrigued behind Brides planning processes and how they choose to go about planning their wedding. When I saw a post on Social Media from a Bride asking suppliers to skill swap my interest was immediately pipped! Do people really do this? How does this work?
After contacting the Bride to be and asking if I could chat to her about her Social Media post and to discover what this actually entailed I met up with the lovely Nina. This is her story.
Nina Jenkins is the owner and therapist at Yin-Yang Therapies, her story begins back in 2009, after trying her first Reiki treatment and the immediate health benefits she experienced Nina was inspired to learn Reiki and after studying became a qualified practitioner which saw the birth of WakeyReiki.
After combining her Reiki with Swedish massage, Indian Head Massage and Holistic Facials, Wakeyreiki has evolved into Yin-Yan Therapies where Nina says ‘ More recently I have been mixing up my treatments and tailoring them for my clients, this tailored ethos makes my offering very different to others. Yin-Yang treatments are about you and finding your optimum balance. Whilst you can sample each signature treatment as it is… I can also mindfully blend them so they are perfect – just for you’
Getting back to the Skill Swap, I asked Nina how the idea to Skill Swap elements for her day came about and how it had been received by suppliers.
How did you come up with the idea to skill swap your wedding?
I think we need to take a leaf from the old days. Bartering (or skill swapping) goes back centuries and as long as both parties are benefiting then why not? The average cost of a UK wedding is escalating beyond what modern day couples can actually afford sadly. Many are taking out loans to be able to fund large and elegant weddings and putting themselves under great pressure and some newly weds are actually paying off the debt for years after. I’m a believer of using your resources where you can, and if that’s a positive for all concerned then why not skill swap at least some of the things you would like for your special day?
How has the idea of skill swap gone down with suppliers you’ve approached?
Some have been very receptive and some have not been as enthusiastic. I think there are some grey lines with swapping, ie. are you both getting an equal share. For example, how much effort would someone need to put in to recoup the value of their services to £100? This differs with each service and product provided by suppliers so sometimes it can make it tricky.
Have you come across any difficulties with the skill swap set up?
Some suppliers haven’t totally understood the concept and this has lead to some difficulties regarding who was offering what. I was offered a swap for photography but the higher value services would have meant many hours of holistic treatments which made it unfeasible sadly. But I have found a great photograher who has offered to capture my day informally for an amazing deal.
Would you recommend it to to Brides on a budget?
Yes I would as it can help cut costs and help others. My advice is to think about a fair deal between both parties (not just in terms of money but time and effort) and set out the guidelines so there are no grey lines before agreeing to a skill swap. I know that every supplier that has offered to swap with me is benefiting from receiving some lovely holistic treatments that will make them feel much better, help them to relax, de-stress and restore themselves, which makes them more happy and productive in work and in general life. And that makes me happy.
If you hadn’t of skill swapped some services, how would this have impacted on your wedding day ideas/designs/atmosphere?
I would not have been able to splurge as much on some things that I really wanted too. I have managed to skill swap flowers, bridesmaid presents, hair styling trial and hair styling on the day, wedding nails and some essential beauty treatments in the run up to the wedding, these really eat into your budget. For example, 2 months prior to a wedding it is recommended you get regular facials every 2 weeks so you can look your absolute best on the day, so if a facial is £45 that really adds up and many brides don’t factor nails, regular facials and hair into the equation when budgeting.
Any other tips for Brides looking to cut costs?
I would also recommend offsetting any crafty DIY wedding tasks to bridesmaids and close family to help even further. For example, do you have an Aunty that can make your bouquets or an uncle who can MC on the day? Can you make anything yourself? Asking for support from those close to you can often mean you don’t have to spend quite as much from the budget.
If your currently planning your wedding and wondering why everyone is taking an age to get back to you its because many suppliers are in the last deep throws of wedding season, being one myself i can assure you there are LOTS of late nights at the moment helping guarantee that my clients dreams become reality.
Its now September, and the start of Autumn, will be here and with it brings Wedding Fayre Season.
Now from experience Wedding Fayres are like marmite…. you either love them or hate them. I am definitely in the love side of this relationship (hubby was definitely on the hate side, perhaps its a bride thing?)
So heres a guide on how to Wedding Fayre, with the pros (and cons) and find out how to get the most out of your experience.
The Wedding Fayre (fair, inspiration day, showcase, open day) are often held at a wedding venue, if there a venue your interested in its a good way to see how your day will ‘look’ – tablets will be dressed for a wedding and with lots of people milling around it will give you an idea of what space you will have available for your guests. If the weathers not great it will also showcase the use of the indoor space!
Wedding Fayres can be themed ie a Vintage Wedding Fayre, these are perfect if your looking to create this styling as all the exhibitors will fit this brief and save you time looking at suppliers that may not fit.
Wedding Fayre like a pro – plan your fayres, make a list of what your after, are there suppliers you’d like to meet in person at a fayre before moving to the stage?
Register for the event – although nearly all fayres are free these days be sure to register – you often get perks of a goody bag containing exclusive offers, early entry and a glass of bubbly!
Choose comfort over style – believe me comfy, sturdy footwear is a must, you’ll totally underestimate the amount of walking that you’ll do.
Do bring a spare pair of hands for all the goodie bags you’ll get – I mean that’s what bridesmaids are for, right? But be sure to bring someone whose opinions you completely trust and value
Check out what suppliers are offering for on the day bookings – many suppliers run ‘Fayre only offers’ and a small deposit will secure potentially larger savings later on – helping your budget to stretch a little further
Equally you’ve got to be in it to win it – some suppliers will run competitions on the day, this is a great way to win a total or partial product or service or a free upgrade
If you’ve found the ‘ONE’ supplier – BOOK. In demand suppliers can often get booked up 2 years in advance, don’t end up disappointed because you didn’t deposit
Be a fair weather Wedding Fayrer – heaven forbid but this is England and it may, just may rain (sleet, snow, hailstone or occasionally sunshine 😉 on your day. If the fayre is at a venue your interested in it will allow you to scope out the rainy day options
Avoid leaving it until the last minute – if you’ve turned up with 15 minutes before the close of the event, you may not get all the information you’ll need as you scan the suppliers. Plus suppliers will be looking to start packing up and this can take quite a while!
Don’t assume that the larger the fayre the better, by all means the larger fayres will have a much larger number of suppliers and with most organizers limiting the number in each category you can be sure of a diverse selection however don’t discount more boutique fayres if your planning an eclectic or more personalize day – they may have that one eclectic supplier you’ve been looking for!
Its not the place for bartering – whilst we all love a bargain, a wedding fayre is not a bazzar, its not the place for haggling with suppliers to obtain the price you want to pay.
Our first 12 Days of Christmas Wedding Giveaway was a whooping success over on Instagram and 12 lucky winners who either bagged themselves an item/product for their wedding or a couples and hen/stag party experience that were up for grabs.
I just wanted to give our wonderful Wedding Suppliers a shout out to thank them for their generosity. Over the 12 days we gave away OVER £1150 worth of prizes:
Day 11 – Bridal hamper of luxury candle, ivory stock wedding shoes, bottle of bubbly AND the chance to make them an offer on your dream wedding dress at The Cotswold Frock Shop/The Bridal Gallery (worth £200++)
Day 12 – Supper Spa Day for 2. Evening spa from 5.30pm including 1 course dinner and wine, 1x 25 minute treatment each courtesy of Hatherley Manor Spa (worth £160)
So from me, the prize winners and all the readers THANK YOU, here’s to the Christmas 2019 giveaway!!!
I am so proud of what of A Cotswold Wedding has become and I have you all to thank for that.
As a blog your engagement has nurtured and allowed a creative writing to flow from me that I never knew existed, let alone LOVE! and I plan more, much more wedding ramblings for 2019.
However its the growth of my blog baby that I wholeheartedly thank you and love you all for – it has seen the development of something very passionate to me, the empowerment of couples to have a stunning and stylish wedding there way – affordable, sustainable and ethical. This year saw the launch of our first Premier Preloved Wedding Fayre, #britishbridalbootsale and finalist in the UK Blog Awards 2019. WOWSERS.
Having been and still am, an independent wedding supplier myself, it really is a role juggling 9 million spinning plates all at once, and unless you work within the industry you’ll never know or appreciate the behind the scenes that go on – the late nights and early starts, the running on adrenaline and caffeine in the strive for clients perfection/vision, so to be able to give something back by supporting and providing networking opportunities to my fellow suppliers as been intensely rewarding.
So whats the plan for 2019…. more of the above. #britishbridalbootsale will be returning not once but twice, and our feedback from its debut means that our fayre is evolving! The ethos will remain on preloved with the additional of ethical in the sense of local, independent sellers – ensuring that couples can have a sustainable wedding that can be a green as possible should they choose.
With two new events in the pipeline also – Style and the Bride and Find Your Dream Dress we have lots to look forward to.
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This Christmas we are celebrating the best of the Cotswolds Wedding industry.
Every day in the run up to Christmas we are featuring an awesome prize from one or more of our Cotswold Wedding suppliers.
To be in with a chance of winning be sure to LIKE this post, LIKE @acotswoldwedding and @thecheltenhamcakery .
and tag friends or family who’d like the prize(s) – ONE COMMENT is ONE ENTRY so get tagging.
Today’s prize is a Fabulous Favours workshop for 6 people. Learn how to create your own wedding favours simply and easily using a range of fondant techniques along with packaging ideas and personalisation techniques. Perfect hen idea.
Prize value £180
No cash alternative or change given. .
Booking dates are subject to availability.
There is a 48 hour cancellation policy with this voucher.
UK entrants only, winner picked at random and will be notified by Direct Message.
This giveaway is in no way associated with Instagram.