Winter Wedding Ideas & Tips

Picture your dream wedding day, and it probably involves photographs by sunset, seasonal bouquets and an idyllic arch or gazebo set up on the beach. By the same token, the likelihood is that it doesn’t involve shivering guests, icy roads or the groom in a sou’wester and galoshes. 

Most people have their weddings in the summer, but winter weddings can be even more magical and romantic, despite the unpredictable weather. Getting married in the winter can be less expensive, allows for some enchanting photographs, and may give your friends and family another reason to travel home for Christmas. Chances are, if you’re reading this, then you feel the same.

So don’t get cold feet, now: it’s time for some winter wedding tips and practical ideas!

Room for Negotation 

The fact that winter is a less busy wedding season will work to your advantage when it comes to planning the most vital component of the day: the venue. True, the hospitality sector – hotels and restaurants – experiences a surge in business during the party season, but not for weddings or overnight stays, with most guests attending parties or other events there instead. This means that you’ll have more choice when it comes to choosing a venue, as hotels are more likely to negotiate on the price. Securing a favourable price and saving on your wedding venue will allow you to redistribute the cost towards something else, like winter-friendly accessories, food at the hotel or even the pièce de résistance: the grand honeymoon. 

Warming to the idea already, then? 

Weather or Not

The weather can be unpredictable at any time of year, but in the winter, it’s particularly important to plan ahead and minimise any potential disruption from cold or wet conditions. Aim for a venue that isn’t too far from the reception – maybe even at the same place, if possible – and organise transport for guests so that they can make the necessary journeys safely and swiftly. Think about which venues will suit the season, too: castles and marquees are lovely on a summer’s day, but on a winter’s evening, the setting may receive a cold reception!

Perhaps the best advice is to take out some wedding insurance. Wedding insurance ensures that you and your partner will be reimbursed if one of the pre-booked services you’ve arranged for your wedding (flowers, photography, music) needs to be cancelled due to the weather or something else.

Save that Date!

If you’re having your wedding around Christmas or New Year, you might be able to arrange it so that friends or family travelling home for Christmas will also be able to attend your wedding. But that season is also very busy so some guests may be already booked! It’s a good idea to send out your ‘Save the Date’ cards extra early for winter weddings, as it will give your guests plenty of time to make or extend their travel plans. People may also need to schedule time off work to attend your wedding – in what is a very hectic season for most sectors – so it’s polite, and mutually beneficial, to afford your guests a lot of notice. 

Start Early

A winter wedding is bound to be dark – that’s part of the charm – but it shouldn’t be grim! Since the days are shorter and the evenings are longer during the winter, it’s wise to set the time of your wedding a few hours earlier than is typical. This will ensure that you get the maximum amount of daylight for photos and greeting guests: you don’t want to be left out in the cold when it comes to capturing those precious memories. 

Dress for Success

With one eye on the weather forecast, and another eye on your phone or laptop, keep guests informed if the weather is shaping up to be predictably unpredictable. Kit out the wedding party with gloves, hats, or even warm boots, and a faux-fur cape for the bride, to keep everyone warm during any outside photographs. You can also circumvent most issues (and complaints) by organising a cart or basket of blankets outside the venue; meanwhile, a set of classy colour-coordinated umbrellas will protect your crew in the middle of a rogue shower. 

Food, Glorious Food

The food is possibly the most talked-about aspect of any wedding: if it’s sub-par, then you’re sure to hear about it! But the fact that you’re getting married in winter affords you certain seasonal options. Plump for warm, festive meals by serving rich meats and winter vegetables. Instead of a cold dessert, keep your guests feeling merry with some perennial holiday favourites, like mulled wine and Christmas pudding. 

Of course, if you really want the crème de la crème for your wedding, then a hot chocolate station or toasted marshmallow bar will give your guests ‘smore to love about your special day.

Outside In

The season can also help dictate your colour scheme. Take inspiration from traditional Christmas combinations, such as green and red or gold and silver, and use glitter or sequins to imitate the sheen of ice and snow. If you’re in love with the vistas at the venue you’ve chosen, you could even set up a clear tent or marquee, which would give you protected, unobstructed views of the scenery. Just remember to make sure the tent is properly heated! Ice sculptures or hanging snowflake ornaments will also mimic the feeling of being outside.

Some flowers will be out of season by the time winter comes, but that doesn’t mean you have to compromise: roses, tulips, hydrangeas, eucalyptus and waxflower can combine to make a stunning bridal bouquet. If you don’t have access to a fireplace, then candles and lanterns will lend the venue more character, style and warmth than normal electrical lighting.

Winter weddings are full of personality and romance, and we hope that, having read this article, you have no objections! A lot of preparation IS required, but that’s true of any wedding, no matter when it’s held. So, are you ready to start planning, or are you ready to set a date? Let us know your thoughts and plans in the comments below!

Wedding Invitation Wording: Our Tips & Samples

He’s popped the question and you’ve gleefully accepted his proposal. Now it’s time to gather the guests! Once you have chosen your stationery, it’s time to put pen to paper or fingers to keys and find out what goes in your wedding invitations! Wedding invitation wording can leave many couples feeling a little frazzled, so we’ve put together a list of wedding invitation samples, essential details to include and some optional extras.

Let’s start with the introduction wording as this can often be the most challenging element. You may want to follow wedding invitation etiquette with regard to the hosts of the wedding.

If the Bride’s Parents are Hosting

Traditionally, the bride’s parents would pay for/ host the wedding. When this happens, etiquette suggests her parents extend the invitation to guests.

Mr & Mrs Mark White request the pleasure of your company at
the marriage of their daughter Ciara Leah Taylor to Edward Joseph Harris

If Both the Bride and Groom’s Parents are Hosting

When both sets of parents are hosting, or you’d like to mention the parents on both sides, it’s customary for the bride’s parents to be listed first on the wedding invitations. If you want to save space on the invite, or if both sets of parents and the couple are contributing, you can include all the names. This also works for blended families.

Together with their families Ciara Leah Taylor & Edward Joseph Harris
invite you to celebrate their marriage

If the Couple are Hosting

Should the bride and groom be hosting the wedding themselves, then the parents’ names do not need to be included. You might even decide to use less formal wording.

Ciara Leah Taylor & Edward Joseph Harris invite you to share
the joy of their marriage

If a Same-Sex Couple are Hosting

Wedding invitation wording etiquette is similar for same-sex couples; where there will be two brides or grooms, it’s really a matter of preference which name will go first. Placing the names in alphabetical order is a nice touch or, alternatively, do what feels right for you. If one set of parents is paying for the wedding, you could put those names first on the invitation.

Sara Harvey & Tracy Anne Hudson request the pleasure of your
company at their marriage

If a Deceased Parent is Being Honoured by Those Hosting

Honouring a deceased parent by including their name on your invite is a lovely way of keeping their memory alive.

Ciara Leah Taylor daughter of Mark Taylor and the late Jessica Taylor & Edward Joseph Harris son of Andrew and Audrey Harris request the honour of your presence at their marriage

If Step-Parents are Hosting

There are many wonderful combinations that make up a family. Including your step parents or parents’ partners to the hosting lines is a beautiful gesture. You may be wondering how you can make it work – it really doesn’t have to be complicated! In the case where both parents have remarried, you can use their married names.

Mr & Mrs Mark White together with Mr & Mrs Andrew Shaw
request the honour of your company at the marriage of their daughter

If a Second Marriage is Included in the Hosting

If this is a second marriage, you can use the same format and wording as a traditional invitation. However, if the bride still has her name from the previous marriage and the couple is hosting, you might want to add a Ms in
front of her name or omit titles altogether. 

Ciara Leah Taylor & Edward Joseph Harris request the pleasure of your presence at their marriage

If Divorced Parents are Hosting

Where parents are divorced, haven’t remarried and are hosting the wedding together, write their full names ensuring to change your mother’s if she has returned to her maiden name. In the case where one or both have remarried, write your parents’ full names noting your mother’s new surname.

Mr Mark White & Mrs Jessica Blake request the pleasure of {guest’s Name}
at the marriage of their daughter

Set the Tone

The tone of your invites should be taken into consideration; some couples might opt for more lighthearted language over formal, traditional wedding invitation wording. Remember, it’s your day and while it is nice to consider tradition and etiquette, you want to make sure that your identity as a couple shines through.

The All-Important Details

Once you have decided on the introduction from the hosts, there some essential details that you will need to include regardless of the tone of your invite.

  • Names of the Couple – This might seem like a given but make sure to include the names of the bride and groom if they weren’t included in the hosting line at the top of the invite.
  • Invitation – Ensure you include the request to attend the wedding. You can also add the names of who you are inviting if you wish, although the names on the envelope should suffice.
  • Requests – If it’s an adult’s only event, be sure to include this to avoid any awkwardness on your big day.
  • Location – Remember to include the whereabouts of the reception if it differs from the ceremony.
  • Specifics – Be sure to include whether the invitation is for the ceremony, reception, evening party or all of the above. If you are inviting some guests only to the reception, consider separate evening wedding invitations.
  • Date and Time – What could be worse than latecomers stealing your thunder as you walk down the aisle? Adding ‘sharp’ after the time will ensure guests are seated and settled for your grand entrance.
  • RSVP Details – Often included on the wedding invite itself. However, some people prefer to include the details on separate response cards.

Optional Additions

In addition to the essentials, there are some other particulars you may want your guests to take into account. Adding details unique to your day will add a personal touch to your invites.

  • Dress Code – Have a theme in mind? Whether it is a black-tie event, destination wedding or a particular colour scheme you have in mind for your guests, include a suggested dress code.
  • Dietary Requirements – It’s a good idea to give the guests the option to flag any dietary requirements ahead of time and let caterers know before the celebrations begin.
  • Gift Registry – It can be considered bad taste to include your gift registry on your invitations, but including an enclosure card in the envelope or on the website is a nice touch. If you would prefer no gifts, you can include something like ‘Your presence is present enough’ or ‘No gifts please, bring only your appetite and your dancing shoes’.
  • End Time – If your reception venue has a curfew or you want the evening to end at a certain time, simply add the line ‘Carriages at…’ and the time of your choice.
  • Accommodation – Adding accommodation suggestions is a nice touch, especially if you have family or friends travelling to your wedding or if you are getting married in another town, county or country.
  • Wedding Website – Especially practical if you have guests travelling from abroad, you have opted for a destination wedding or if your celebrations will take place over a whole weekend. Your wedding website will come in useful for adding travel details, accommodation options and your wedding itinerary.

Wedding Thank You Card Tips & Etiquette

The big day has come and gone, the guests have travelled home and last slices of cake have been eaten. While your honeymoon may be the only thing on your mind right now, there’s one last thing to check off that to-do list: the wedding thank you cards.

Attending a wedding is a big ask, and often expense – your guests may have taken the days off, bought a new dress, booked a hotel and found a present. You want them to know how much their presence meant to you.

The thought of writing 100+ thank you notes may not be that appealing, but it is achievable! Just follow our guide to wedding thank you card etiquette and see some of our favourite designs.

Who Receives a Thank You Card?

There’s no need to panic about this one – simply include everyone. From small gestures to grand actions, thank everyone who contributed in any way to your nuptials.

Start with the wedding party, so your bridesmaids, groomsmen and of course your parents. Whether they hosted your wedding and provided financial assistance or not, they deserve a huge thanks for the love, help and support they’ve given you, on the big day and run-up to it. Even the little flower girls and ring bearers will want a card. They may be small but being part of your wedding was probably a big deal for them.

Parents Wedding Thank You Cards

Let’s face it, without the suppliers, you wouldn’t have been able to make your fairy-tale day come true. From florists to bakers, musicians to photographers, every little detail they added counted so include them on your list. Plus don’t forget the person who married you!

Officiant Wedding Thank You Cards

Next up, all the guests. The friends and family who came to rejoice with you made your day what it was. It’s important to remember that sometimes, presence is the only gift we need. So don’t leave out those who weren’t in a position to buy a gift. Also, if you received a group present, it’s more personal to thank each individual guest rather than send just one card. Finally, include the family or friends who couldn’t make it on the day but still sent you a gift.

When Should You Send Wedding Thank You Cards?

This one is easy too – as soon as possible! Why not get them done and dusted before your honeymoon, so you can truly sit back and relax as newlyweds? Even if you don’t manage that, it’s best practice to send your wedding thank you cards within three months of the day. Also, it’s more fun and easier to write your messages while the wedding is still fresh in your minds.

Of course timing also depends on the size of your wedding. If you had hundreds of guests, then everyone will understand that you have a big task and it may take a while. But if you had a very small guest list, sending cards six months down the line won’t look great!

That said, if you miss the three-month deadline, don’t use that as an excuse to not send a card at all. A thank you card sent a year later is still better than none at all.

Floral Wreath Wedding Thank You Cards

How to Pick the Perfect Wedding Thank You Cards

Your thank you notes are the last little detail in your wedding, so you’ll want to leave your guests with something memorable. Personalised wedding thank you cards will do just that. If you’re organised and want all your wedding stationery to match, why not order them at the same time as your wedding invitations. Whether you opted for a rustic, vintage or beach theme, most of the wedding invitation suites on Zazzle have coordinating thank you cards.

Beach Wedding Thank You Cards

Another option is to wait and use your photographs and send wedding photo thank you cards. Simply add your favourite shots to one of our templates to create a perfect keepsake for your guests. If you do this, talk to your photographer about timing so you can get at least a selection of photographs before the rest to make your cards.

Photo Wedding Thank You Cards

It’s also nice idea to send specific notes to the wedding party. You can find individual mother of the bride, flower girl or bridesmaid thank you cards and even personalise them with names.

Bridesmaid Thank You Cards

What to Write in Wedding Thank You Cards

The trick with wedding thank you card wording is to make it as personal as possible. First things first, address each person by their name. If they gave you a gift, thank them for it and say why you love it and how you plan to use it. If they gave you money, it’s inappropriate to mention the amount but thank them for the ‘generous gift’. Then suggest how you will use the funds, whether for your honeymoon, to decorate the house etc.

It’s nice to call out other details in your note, for example if the recipient helped you with something specific or travelled a long way to be at the wedding. Or why not recount a fun anecdote from the day that included them. If they didn’t make it, say how you wished they could have been there.

Floral Wedding Thank You Cards

Finally, mention when you might see them next, whether that’s for a lunch date or at an upcoming family event. Then sign off from both you and your spouse. If you’ve taken your other half’s name (or you want to specify that you haven’t!), or if you changed your address since your wedding, your thank you cards are an opportunity to let people know. You can even have an address sticker made up to add to the inside of the card, or as a return address on the envelope.

Address Stickers

More Wedding Thank You Card Tips

The secret to making this task stress-free is to be organised. No matter how big or small your wedding is, you know you’re going to need to thank your guests, so start planning before the wedding! Explore thank you card designs, settle on one you love and get it ordered in plenty of time. This way, if guests decide to give you your gift prior to the wedding, you can thank them straight away.

The idea of missing someone you meant to thank is gut-wrenching. Don’t rely on your memory amid all the madness of a wedding and honeymoon, start a list of all the people you need to thank. Remember that wedding guest list spreadsheet? Make a copy! Then just add columns for gifts and keep track of them as they arrive. This way you will have all the names, addresses and details you need to start writing.

Photo Collage Wedding Thank You Cards

Then just designate a time to start and stick to it. You could spread it out over a series of sessions or get a bottle of wine and some nice food in and make a night of it! If you had hundreds of guests, you could enlist a couple of helpers to seal envelopes, write addresses and add stamps. But the personal messages inside should always come from you or your spouse.

Last but not least, remember to use a nice pen! Good luck and share any of your own wedding thank you card tips.

Easy DIY Wedding Ideas To Impress

While a wedding is a wonderful and joyous occasion, it can also be an expensive one! By taking charge of some of the elements and some simple DIY wedding ideas, you can make big savings. I had the recent pleasure of helping a relative of mine with her wedding, which was truly special. So I wanted to share some helpful homemade wedding ideas to add some unique elements to your ceremony and venue. Not only will they cut down on costs, but also make your big day more personal and a stand out affair!

Fairy Lights

Adding fairy lights to your decorations can be a simple and cost effective way to add some sparkle and glamour to your wedding décor. Whether you have a blank wall to arch way to dress up, fairy lights can both brighten up a dark area and create a relaxing ambiance. If your wedding venue is full of architectural features that might often go unnoticed, dress them up by wrapping a few strings of lights around them and as the day turns to night, these areas will become prominent features. Curtain lights can also be the perfect way to create an Instagram-worthy backdrop!

DIY Seating Chart

Making your own seating chart is one of the simplest DIY wedding projects. With Zazzle you can create your own wedding seating chart poster that matches your wedding theme such as vintage, rustic or classic romance. The great thing about designing your own seating chart is that you can create it in your own time, edit it as seating plans change, and place the order when you’re ready. You can jazz up your seating chart by sourcing a blank antique frame from a second hand shop, and hang it in the entrance to your wedding reception for instant, cost-effective glamour.

Candles

At my relative’s recent wedding, we used candles in just about any available space we could find. Candles, lit or unlit, can add an element of romance to the décor. This venue had a rustic feel to it so we used cream candles for a touch of rustic elegance and placed them around windowsills, a feature fireplace, and even in the bathrooms to dress them up! Using candles of varying widths and heights can draw the eye in and create focal point.

Greenery and Flowers

Flowers and greenery can end up being one of the most expensive elements of the day if purchased through the wedding venue or a wedding florist. Sourcing flowers from a wholesaler and creating some DIY flower arrangements can actually be simpler then it appears. Flowers such as roses and alstroemeria can make for the perfect flowers for your arrangements, and DIY wedding bouquets for the bridal party, as they are both available in a wide variety of colours to suit your wedding scheme. Greenery such as myrtle and honey bracelet can be used to fill out your flower arrangements, and ivy can be used among your decorations, for instance, surrounding candles or wrapped around your fairy lights for added impact. Source your flowers and greenery in advance and collect them the day before the wedding so you can create fresh and stunning arrangements.

Place Cards

Another one of our favourite DIY wedding ideas to do on Zazzle – design your own place cards. This is exactly what we did for my relatives wedding. We uploaded our own design, added some background colour and the end result was simply spectacular! Of course, for a really cost effective and personal touch, you can create your own from scratch. Source some simple white or cream colour blank cards and hand-write them yourself (or ask someone with nice handwriting!). Then with a simple stroll through the woods you can collect some pine cones to act as place card holders, and you’ve got the ultimate rustic chic place setting decorations!

Favours

It is often the small touches that will stand out to your guests and have them talking long after the big day so it’s important to get the favours just right. That doesn’t mean they need to be expensive – in fact DIY wedding favours can be much more memorable. Homemade sweets and treats can look truly impressive when wrapped up nicely. So why not pop some truffles or fudge in personalised favour bags or wrap them up in polythene and label them with gift tags. Or you could gift little bottles of homemade gin or liquor dressed up with personalised labels. If you don’t have time time to make your own, you can still buy your treats (we won’t tell), but the personalised packaging will give them a homemade, rustic look!

Wedding Signage

If your wedding venue is particularly large or you’re having an outdoor wedding, then you’ll want to have some signs to let your guests know where all the important parts are from the dance floor to the sweets table or toilets. You can create wedding sign posters to be in keeping with your wedding theme, or in bold, statement colours to stand out amongst the rest. Place these signs on easels or in simple frames for easy viewing. If you’re having an outdoor wedding, you can try your hand at creating your own custom signs from scratch. Source some wooden pieces, paint on your words of choice and nail the pieces to a simple blank. Without much hassle you’ve got some wedding décor with rustic class!

Centrepieces

Re-using everyday materials can be a great hack for wedding accessories. You can use jam jars or mason jars to act as wedding centrepieces that you can fill with lights and foliage. Additionally, if you want to collect some wine bottles over time, you can spray paint these with gold or silver metallic paint. They can make amazing vases for flowers to be used as fabulous centrepieces, or as decorations throughout the wedding. This little trick will make your vases look much more expensive than they actually are!

Bake It Away

A recent trend with many wedding parties is to make their own wedding desserts and sweet treats, giving their big day a very personal element. By making your own sweet treats for the dessert table, you’ll make a big saving in this area, as well as getting exactly what you want and love. Better yet, you can ask some close friends or family to lend a hand for a marvellous spread of delicious desserts for all to share!

So there you have it, for my own family wedding we found that the parts of the wedding that really stood out to guests were the decorations that we had taken the time and effort to do ourselves. Adding your own personal touches to your wedding day can make the day truly unique and can let you and your soon to-be spouse’s personalities shine through!

Royal Wedding Details To Inspire Your Own Big Day!

A week last Saturday, the world tuned in to watch the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. The event was set to break tradition and push the boundaries of the royal family and it did not disappoint! We were treated to a host of celebrity guests, fabulous fashion, a moving speech by Rev. Michael Bruce Curry and a powerful rendition of ‘Stand By Me’.

With the summer wedding season about to begin, and brides planning those last finishing touches, I’ve put together a list of the best royal wedding details to inspire your own big day and give it that regal edge!

The Invitations

One of the elements that largely kept within royal traditions were the wedding invites. The official invitations were gilded and made using American ink on English card – a subtle nod to the union of two different cultures. The invitations featured the three-feathered badge of Prince Charles in gold ink at the top, printed on thick, eight-by-six-inch white cards. While the design was traditional, the happy couple made them more modern by writing ‘Ms Meghan Markle’ instead of her full name of ‘Ms Rachel Meghan Markle’. You might not have your own family crest, but gold wedding invitations with your initials or a personal emblem will still make for an elegant invitation suite.

The Décor & Flowers

The royal wedding décor was focused on beautiful botanical features. The entry ways and arches were filled with a spectacular display of flora and greenery. The church already featured elaborate architecture, and the delicate royal wedding flowers gave the perfect finishing touch. Their florist created a floral display with flowers naturally in bloom at this time of the year, including peonies, white roses and foxgloves that were locally sourced from the Crown Estate and Windsor Great Park. As well as the succulent green foliage, silver birch, beech and hornbeam were used throughout the archways and entry ways.

As well as these floral arrangements, Meghan’s bridal bouquet included flowers hand-picked by Harry from their private garden at Kensington Palace. The bouquet included jasmine, sweet peas, myrtle, lily of the valley and forget-me-nots where were Princess Diana’s favourite flower, a small nod to the groom’s mother. We’re sure lots of brides are now longing for a similar look so the greenery wedding trend is only set to soar!

The Bridal Party

Having children in the bridal party is traditional to royal weddings. Meghan and Harry selected ten bridesmaids and page boys to attend their wedding, and they were all children with close ties to the couple, including Princess Charlotte and Prince George. While Harry included his brother, Prince William, as his Best Man, Meghan broke from tradition and opted not to have a maid of honour or chief bridesmaid. There are several advantages to having a younger bridal party – as well as looking adorable, you won’t upset any older friends who don’t make the cut! Invite your little tribe to be by your side with ‘Will you be my flower girl’ cards!

The Outfits 

Meghan did not let people down when it came to her royal wedding dress. The modest and classic dress included a bateau neckline, three-quarter length sleeves, and a long flowing train. Her five-metre long veil featured hand-embroidered floral designs, representing the countries of the Commonwealth. Meghan also wore a simple diamond tiara once owned by Queen Mary. Both Prince Harry and Prince William wore the frockcoat uniform of the Blues and Royals.

The bridal party of royal tots were also dressed to impress.  Each of the bridesmaid dresses were made out of ivory silk, and were of a high-waisted design with short puff sleeves. They included pleated skirts and pockets and were finished off with a double silk ribbon tied in a bow at the back. The look was then completed with stunning flower crowns, in keeping with the floral décor. The page boys wore a miniature version of Prince Harry’s Blues and Royals frockcoat.

The Colour Scheme

The royal wedding colour scheme was fresh and natural. The bride and bridesmaids wore bright white and tones of pastel green were seen throughout the bouquets, in keeping with the colours used in the décor. The rest of the bridal party also dressed to match, with the Queen opting for a stunning citrine coat over her plum, lime, and emerald printed floral dress. The mother of bride wore a mint green coat with floral detailing atop a matching dress, while the Duchess of Cambridge went with a modest primrose yellow dress with a floral fascinator. The colour scheme could be described as a spring-green garden, with pastel tones and natural flowers at the forefront.

The Photography

The couple also opted for an incredibly natural style when it came to the royal wedding photography. The official photographs made use of natural light, included members of the family with natural smiles and people placed at different heights with natural poses. While some newlyweds wait months to reveal their wedding photography, these newlyweds were not shy about releasing their photos just days after the event. Why not embrace a similar approach by sending out photo wedding thank you cards soon after your wedding with fun snaps of the day.

The Favours 

Even at a royal wedding, favours were a must! Official gift bags were handed out to the 2,640 members of the public who were invited into the castle grounds to view the couple’s special day. The gift bags were a simple hessian bag with striking blue handles. They were also personalised for the newlyweds with the initials ‘HM’ and the date and venue of the wedding. Inside each bag was a service booklet, a tube of shortbread, a large chocolate Harry and Meghan coin, a bottle of water and a fridge magnet – so both practical supplies and keepsakes for the day. Treat your guests to something similar with wedding tote bags, filled with treats like magnets for mementos as well as practical elements like plasters for all those dancing feet after the dinner!

The Menu & Cake

The couple’s first wedding reception was hosted by the Queen and Prince Philip at St George’s Chapel, for a whopping 600 attendees. The guests were treated to a selection of canapes including smoked salmon, grilled asparagus and garden pea panna cotta. A selection of larger dishes then included free-range chicken with mushrooms and leeks, as well as slow roasted Windsor pork belly. Produce from their menu was largely sourced in the UK. Guests also sipped on champagne, a selection of wines and an elderflower mocktail that was made with the same elderflower syrup used in the wedding cake.

The wedding cake was a lemon-flavoured sponge, soaked in an elderflower cordial syrup, covered in a Swiss meringue buttercream also flavoured with elderflower. It was made in three parts of varying sizes, which were arranged atop footed, golden bowls and a mirrored tray.
If you’re planning on hosting a royal feast of your own, be sure to present your guests with all the delicious options printed on wedding menus to match your theme.

The Personalised Touches

This royal wedding certainly wasn’t shy of adding in some personal touches for the happy couple. There were family favourite flowers, special music and even a Tiki-themed bar, just like Harry’s favourite London bar, as part of their ‘festival themed’ celebration. Guests were also welcomed by a steel band before the meal.

These personal elements really reflected the couple’s personality on their special day and you can do the same. If you’re wine lovers, why not create personalised wine labels for the table, or if you’re jetting off for a beach wedding, make your own custom flip flops! Everyone will remember the small touches so make sure to let your personalities shine through, just like the happy royal couple!

Unique Wedding Gifts That Mean More

In the age of gift registries and honeymoon funds it seems impossible to give unique wedding gifts that really stand out. Wedding gift etiquette clearly states that you should stick to the list… but here at Zazzle we believe that personalised wedding gifts mean so much more than a mindless purchase off the registry. So if you want to give a gift with a difference, we’ve come up with seven wedding gift ideas that will have the bride and groom swooning.

1 . For the Arty Couple

Create a custom piece of wall art that that they can hang in their home and enjoy every day. For example, frame a vintage travel poster of where they met or their honeymoon destination. Make wood wall art embellished with their initials and the details of their wedding day. Or print a wedding canvas using a stunning photograph of the moment they were married.

Wedding Photo Camvas

2. For the Adventurous Couple

Any globetrotting couple is sure to have booked one heck of a honeymoon. Send them packing with some some personalised travel accessories. Wedding luggage tags, his ‘n’ hers flip flops and monogrammed beach towels are personal but practical and are sure to be used for years of adventures to come!

Wedding Luggage Tags
Wedding Beach Towels

3. For the Foodie Couple

If the way to their heart is through their stomachs. stock their kitchen with food-centric gifts. Customised aprons, chopping boards or even table cloths are so much more exciting than another toaster. Or if you’re a bit of a foodie yourself, wrap up homemade or carefully selected goodies with personalised stickers, wine labels, tissue paper and gift bags for a beautifully presented wedding hamper.

Wedding Chopping Boards

 4. For the Couple Who Can’t Resist a Morning Brew

Create matching mugs with their names or typography that are personal to them. You can simply print two regular mugs or go one step further with the Lover’s Mug Set. Zazzle’s Lovers’ mugs are made to perfectly fit together… just like the happy couple. Now (thanks to you!) the newlyweds can share a morning cuppa every day. Awwwww!

Wedding Mug - Mrs

Wedding Mugs - Mr

5. For the Couple that Love Breakfast in Bed

A customised serving tray is perfect for the couple that enjoys breakfast in bed (who doesn’t?!). Or create customised cushions and blankets for mornings snuggling in front of Netflix. Personalise your thoughtful gifts with their names, wedding date or a sentimental quote…

Wedding Cushions

6. For the Sentimental Couple

 A keepsake box offers a touching way for the newlyweds to store all the items that inspired their wedding memories in one place. Personalise yours with their names, wedding date or a photo of the happy couple for a quality gift that stands out from the crowd.

7. For the Couple Who Spend Ages in the Bathroom

If your bride and groom love their bathroom, treat them to some bath and beauty gifts. On Zazzle you can customise shower curtains, toothbrush holders, towels, bath mats and more to add to their newlywed boudoir.

Wedding Couple Bath Mats

So there you have our top unique wedding gift ideas that can all be found right here on Zazzle! Be bold, be brave, and give your newlyweds an unforgettable gift that they will cherish forever.

7 Ways to Use Rubber Stamps

One simple stamp, so many possibilities! When you think of rubber stamps, most people think about stamping paper products like invitations and cards. You’re not wrong! Investing in an address stamp will certainly save you a lot of time handwriting the back of envelopes. However, personalised rubber stamps can be used for so much more. With different types of inks and surfaces, the options are endless.

Here are our favourite ways to use rubber stamps for craft projects, or to just make your life easier.

1. Do you own a small business? Make your mark by branding all your stationery and packaging with a rubber stamp. Simply create a business stamp with your logo or contact information and print on everything from your envelopes to invoices. It’s also an easy and affordable way to brand items like paper coffee cups, paper bags, labels or loyalty cards.

2.  If you love to make batches of jam every year, bake cookies for Christmas or are even experimenting with a home brew, use rubber stamps to turn your efforts into gifts or items ready for sale. Customise one of our ‘Made by’ stamps with your name and print on jam jar labels, stickers, tissue paper, boxes or whatever you use to wrap up your wares.

3. Go one step further by using stamps to decorate actual homemade goods! It’s easier than you’d think. Simply dip your stamp in food colouring or icing and carefully print onto baked items. You could add seasonal shapes or messages for holidays like Christmas or Valentine’s Day, or someone’s name for a birthday! This method works best with smooth fondant icing.

4. Tired of your children losing all their clothing and other miscellaneous items at school or day care? Create a stamp with your child’s name and a phone number to ensure these items get returned to the rightful owner. Stamp on labels or directly inside text books, on pencil cases, rulers and lunch boxes. Use fabric ink and you can even mark clothing and bags.

5. Fashion your own temporary tattoos! Just remember to use washable ink. Perhaps your child wants to dress up as biker or pirate for Halloween or to show off tattoos just like daddy has. Or maybe you’re organising a hen party and want to brand the crew as the ‘Bride Tribe’. Butterflies, stars, tigers and typography, add anything to create your own custom tattoo stamp.

6. Are you planning an event and want to personalise the party supplies, but on a budget? Create a stamp with your name, monogram or the date of the party and print onto inexpensive napkins, paper plates, favour tags, party bags and place cards. Personalise our wonderful wedding rubber stamps to make your mark on all the little details of your big day.

7. Stamps are also handy in other crafts. Dip in fabric ink to print a pattern on a sewing project or use to mark an outline to stitch when embroidering. Or use without any ink at all to just imprint a name or message onto homemade soap or candles.

Do you have any more ingenious ideas for rubbers stamps? Share away below.

9 Things to Consider Before Planning a Destination Wedding

Sandy toes and salty kisses, are you about to become Mr and Mrs? At some point in every couple’s wedding planning process, they entertain the idea of a destination wedding.

Let’s set the scene. You and your sweetheart are holding hands on a golden sandy beach with the majestic blue hue of the ocean glistening in the background. The wind is blowing in your hair and the warm sand is tickling your toes as you gaze lovingly into the eyes of the man of your dreams and whisper ‘I do’. Sounds perfect right? To a cool, calm, super chilled bride (or bridechilla as I like to call them), this is the dream wedding. Bridezillas, on the other hand, beware! If you’re tempted, we’ve put together a few pointers to help you decide ‘Is a destination wedding right for me?’

Just Relax

If you’ve been planning every aspect of your wedding day since childhood, a destination wedding may not be for you. You will forget to pack something, somebody will miss their flight or lose their baggage and you will lose the plot. Better stay closer to home, where things are a little easier to keep under control. Whereas if you’re pretty laid back and want a relaxed rather than regimented wedding, then go ahead and wed away.

Do Your Paperwork

If you’re getting married abroad, remember to research the legalities for your chosen country. The rules, regulations and essential paper work around both civil and religious ceremonies vary vastly place to place, so you need to do your homework. Alternatively, you could just have the celebration and blessing abroad and make it official back home.

Let Them Save the Date

If your guests need to travel for your wedding, it’s more important than ever to send out save-the-dates as soon as you can. They’ll need to book flights, accommodation and ask for time off work so need a bit of notice. Similarly, get the full invitations out at least 12 weeks before you take off. Your stationery is also a chance to get everyone excited about the exotic trip! Pull out all the stops and send colourful, tropical, or retro themed destination wedding invitations that will have them dreaming of the beach.

Don’t Expect RSVPs, ASAP

Your guests may take a little longer to RSVP to a wedding abroad, beacue they have more to consider themselves. You’ll also need to embrace the fact that due to practicalities, some guests may RSVP ‘no’. Don’t be glum if some of your mates can’t make it… it will do wonders for your budget! In fact, you have reason not invite everyone in the first place. Planning a destination wedding is a great way to keep numbers down by limiting it to just close friends and family, and are often all the more intimate for it. But if you or your fiancé’ need a lot of people to be there, you might want to reconsider.

No Fun in the Sun

While it may be relaxing to lounge about in the sun before your wedding, please resist all temptation! Weirdly placed tan lines and skin that resembles a lobster is the last thing you need when you’ll be wearing a white wedding dress in a few days, and with lots of photographs.

Keep Your Cool

Beautiful, balmy weather is probably one of the reasons why you want to marry abroad in the first place. But remember those temperatures when you’re trying on outfits back home. For example, avoid thick, synthetic fabrics for your wedding dress and give the three piece suits a miss. Supplying your guests with hand fans will be much appreciated! On Zazzle, you can print them with the details of the day too.

Expect Wardrobe Malfunctions

If you’re having a beach wedding, there may also be be outfit emergencies. Your heels may sink in the sand. Your dress, or your fiancé’s kilt may catch a gust of wind. Or one of your guests may lose their hat. Does that thought make you smile or want to scream? To avoid stilletos sinking in the sand, why not create some comfy custom flip flops for the big day on the beach.

Be Our Guest

At a traditional wedding, you’ll see the guests for a few hours at most. If you’re marrying abroad, chances are your guests will make a holiday out of it. So just make sure you want to spend a week with them – something to consider when narrowing down the guest list.

Location, Location, Location

You want your guests to think ‘Wow, that wedding is so them!’ instead of ‘So, why did they get married on a farm?’, right? Maybe you’re both foodies or into the great outdoors. Perhaps you met on holiday in Marbella or he proposed in Paris. If you’re going to travel, it’s more important than ever to make the location meaningful to you as a couple.

Destination weddings offer a truly unique, intimate and memorable wedding experience. If you’re a perfectionist, with a keen eye for detail and high expectations, then it’s probably best to stick to a more traditional wedding. If you want to share your special day with the people who truly matter, in a low-key, intimate setting then set your sights on the ocean and get planning that beach wedding now!

Wedding Trends To Watch Out For

As spring begins, so will the wedding season and a whole new bunch of wedding trends to get excited about. While classic wedding themes will never go out of style, a touch of a trend can set your day apart and make it more individual to you. So now that chalkboards and burlap are behind us (mostly), what will be the dress, stationery, reception, food or décor this year? From ultra violet to see-through table settings, there is lots of fun to be had. Get in there first with our guide to 2018 wedding trends.

Ultra Violet

Pantone of the year always plays a part in setting wedding colour trends. In 2018 it’s all about ultra violet, a deep blue-based purple with cosmic or even regal undertones. It might seem a bit bold, but sprinkled throughout your wedding – in the invites, table settings, bouquet ribbons or bridesmaid dresses – it can add energy and depth. The whole purple palette is trending too, from lavender to lilac.

Ultra Violet Wedding Invite

Midnight Garden

In 2018 we’ll be seeing a shift away from soft pastel palettes to the dark and dramatic. Rich and moody hues like burgundy and deep purples will appear in floral arrangements even mixed with berries and boho details like feathers. With a dark fairytale feel, this wedding trend works well for winter – it would look stunning against the snow. Set the tone from the beginning with dark floral invitations.

Greenery

Last year’s Pantone of the year, greenery, was a huge hit and in 2018 it is only set to grow. Not only is this trend visually beautiful but it’s budget friendly too. Try lush plants like ferns, eucalyptus, vines or succulents for stunning shapes or herbs like lavender, rosemary or thyme to even perfume your venue. Use to line your aisle, on the table tops and in bouquets. You can illustrate your theme on your stationery and other details like napkins or favour bags.

Greenery Wedding Invitation

Heralded Crests

Monograms have long been a chic way to personalise your wedding, on invitations, cakes, napkins and programmes. But now couples are going beyond simple initials and commissioning more whimsical letter art with floral flourishes or even heraldic style crests. On Zazzle you can print yours on everything from save the dates to favours.

Black Magic

Straight from the fashion pages, this trend is bold but beautiful. We’ve seen high-end wedding gowns with black accents, black bridal crowns and bridesmaid dresses. If you don’t fancy a dark wedding dress, you can still try black ribbons, invitations or favours. Black table settings like table cloths, place mats or napkins also look stunning paired with gold cutlery.

Black Wedding Napkin

Fun Food

From food-stations to trucks, eating is becoming more and more of an experience at a wedding. Unlike a sit-down meal, informal food means more mingling. It’s also a fun way to show off your personality by choosing the foods that mean a lot to you – from your cultural heritage to favourite guilty pleasures. Dessert tables offering a whole range cakes also go down a treat. Add some more personality to your food stations with personalised paper party supplies like plates, napkins, cups and more.

Copper

Move over rose gold, copper is this year’s must-have metallic. Perfect for an autumn wedding, copper accents such as cutlery, lanterns or even tables and chairs create a warm and cosy glow. It pairs well with dark colours like navy or a paler blush pink, but also with marbles or concrete materials for a more industrial look.

Copper Wedding Sticker

Transparent Touches

Mid-century design is having a moment, and with it we’re seeing the use of see-through materials like acrylic, Perspex and good-old glass. From glass marquees to floor-to-ceiling windows to see-through dancefloors, clear décor is modern and fun. It lets the light in and quite simply makes your space look bigger and brighter. These minimalist materials also put the focus on what they are displaying or holding, from colourful cakes to bright bouquets. Try serving the bubbly on Zazzle’s acrylic trays.

Written In the Stars

From the actual moon, sun and stars to mythical astrology, celestial themes are set to trend in 2018. There are many unique and beautiful ways to add a celestial vibe to your wedding, from fairy lights and disco balls to star sign favours or crystal-encrusted headdresses. While constellations and phases of the moon can create stunning graphics and interesting names for table plans. We think this trend is truly out of this world.

Celestial Wedding Invitation

Typographic Signs

Typography is nothing new but couples are being more and more playful with their words. Wedding signage spelling out your last name, nicknames, favourite quotes or an in-joke adds a fun and personal element to your wedding décor. They can also be repurposed in your home as a memento of the day. Wood or acrylic wall art or neon signs, will all make the transition from your wedding to walls.

Geodes & Crystals

There are plenty of ways to rock the geode trend on your big day. The beautiful colours and curvaceous shapes in these rock formations work beautifully printed on the invitations, table cards, plates and more. Couple are even ordering geode wedding cakes in jewel colours and encrusted with sugar crystals.

Geode Agate Wedding Wine Labels

Bold Backdrops

Wedding arches have long created a focus for the ceremony and of course the photographs, but in 2018 some new shapes will set the scene. Full-circle wedding wreaths are not only on the invites, but in the actual wedding. Whilst geometric backdrops like A-frame arches or diamond shapes are also being spotted in on-trend ceremonies. Bold backdrops elsewhere in the venue add a personal element and photo opportunities, from flower walls to commissioned murals.

Rehearsal Dinners

A longstanding tradition in the USA, rehearsal dinners are starting to take off in the UK and Ireland. Everyone is bound to be spending the evening together anyway, so why not make it a bit more of an occasion by preparing invitations and menus. Plan a dinner or drinks party somewhere special or even just a few down at the local. Remember it’s supposed to be fun, but not so fun you are still out at 2am…

Rehearsal Dinner Invitations

The Great Indoors

Let’s face it, the weather can’t be trusted. So rather than refreshing the forecast every few minutes, why not go indoors. Your inside reception doesn’t have to be a castle or manor house. Industrial loft-style spaces, museums ad even pubs are becoming more popular. Select a space that played a part in your relationship – where you had your first date or where he proposed. Low-key venues strip away formality and make guests your guests feel at home so you can just enjoy each other’s company. Better than a soggy wedding dress any day.

Fun Ways To Ask ‘Will You Be My Bridesmaid?’

He popped the question and now it’s your turn to propose… ‘Will you be my bridesmaid?‘ Whether you are looking for one Maid of Honour or a whole Bride Tribe, asking your bridesmaids is one of the most meaningful tasks to tick off that wedding checklist. If you were planning on a simple phone call or text message, think again! There are so many thoughtful and fun be my bridesmaid ideas that will make her feel extra special (and forgive you when you go a bit bridezilla!) From sending simple cards to saying it with sweets, these creative ideas are sure to be met with a resounding ‘YES!’

With a Card

All your guests will be receiving personal invitations, so you can at least send your girls will you be my bridesmaid cards. Handwritten notes are so much more personal and add a real sense of occasion. There are tons of beautiful personalised designs where you can add her name, or opt for funny will you be my bridesmaid cards if you like to have a giggle.

Personalised Will You Be My Bridesmaid Card

Will You Be My Bridesmaid Card

Over a Glass of Wine

What girl doesn’t like drinking with their besties, so why not ask over a glass of vino or bubbly. Upgrade your bottle (ideally one of her favourites) with one of these personalised wine labels. Ask her over for mid-week drinks… then ta-dah! The best way to brighten up a Wednesday. She’ll be so excited, she’ll be cracking open that bottle in a prosecco!

Will You Be My Bridesmaid Wine Label

Will You Be My Bridesmaid Wine Label

Or a Cuppa

For a more civilised will you be my bridesmaid party, gather your girls for afternoon tea then personalise the mugs with names and the big question! You could even choose a morphing mug to make the big reveal more fun. Bridesmaid mugs make a personal but practical keepsake, and are sure to be put to good use over all those wedding planning sessions! Just add their name or even a photo you two together.

Will You Be My Bridesmaid Mug

Will You Be My Bridesmaid Photo Mug

With Sweet Treats

We all know the way to any girl’s heart is with something sweet. So it’s time to get baking (or visit the cake shop). Package up freshly baked cookies, cupcakes or her favourite chocolates with personalised gift wrap like gift tags, stickers, wrapping paper, ribbon or favour bags. After all, you ‘Donut want to say I do without you!’  Who could say no to donuts?

Will You Be My Bridesmaid Gift Tag

In a Balloon or on a Banner

Literally ‘pop’ the question by hiding it inside a balloon – currently one of the most popular ways to ask will you be my bridesmaid. Add a little note or even poem inside balloons, along with some sparkly glitter or sequins for effect, inflate with helium, then present to your BFFs on string or even hidden inside a box. Another high impact idea is to pop the question on a big banner – ours are up to 5 foot long so she won’t miss it. Hang at your party venue or even display it outside her house!

On a Puzzle

Half the fun of asking your bridesmaid is the element of surprise. So draw out the excitement with ideas like scratch cards, treasure hunts, crossword puzzles or a jigsaw puzzle! Let her piece together your big news with a puzzle personalised with her name and even a photo of you together. Perfect for ladies who like a challenge!

Will You Be My Bridesmaid Jigsaw Puzzle

With a Goodie Bag

Why settle on one bridesmaid idea, when you can spoil your girls with lots of little presents. Fill a will you be my bridesmaid box or tote bag with goodies like photos of you all together, badges, little bottles of bubbly, beauty products, candles, sweets etc. You could even make them into emergency survival or wedding planning kits and include items like personalised notebooks and post-it notes! They will come in handy over the next few months as you deliver those checklists.

Bridesmaid Tote Bag

Bridesmaid Notebook

We all know that every Kate needs a Pippa, right? Perhaps you have known who will be by your side for years, or you have spent weeks agonising over the decision. Either way, any bridesmaid proposal is bound to be a teary moment and one you will remember for a lifetime. We hope these ideas will make it even more memorable. Whether you are asking your sister, cousin, childhood or university friend, now is the time to start proposing to your girls and let the real fun begin!