We like to think we know a thing or two about planning weddings. With years of experience you start to learn how to plan events that flow and go off without a hitch. Of course, with experience you also learn what not to do. So, we’ve tried to highlight five of the most common mistakes in an effort to help you avoid them.
Write the guest list first
The guest list is the ultimate wedding planning guide, around which everything else can be built. Making decisions when it’s not confirmed can lead to all sorts of problems. With a guest list set in stone, you have a firm idea of numbers, personnel and any special requirements.
Blowing the budget
Budgets can get used up quickly. So, if you’re not keeping an eye on it, it’ll be gone before you know it. If you’ve never planned or project managed a big event before, keeping on top of the budget can prove tricky.
Leaving things to the last minute
Putting off anything – the little jobs – to the last minute is never a good idea. Aim to have everything done days before the wedding, that way you have a contingency for the inevitable issues that will arise.
Changing your mind
Switching your colour scheme two months before the wedding is going to create a huge amount of work. So, make sure you are 100% happy with your choices before you set wheels in motion.
Not getting a planner
As you can tell from the above, there’s a lot that can go wrong on or before the big day. Which is why we always recommend not trying to tackle it all by yourself. Wedding planners can help you create and deliver a flawless wedding that you can enjoy and remember forever.
Colours remain the same but the way we use them and appreciate them is constantly evolving. As we head into 2018, a range of colours and palettes are emerging as favourites for weddings and celebrations this year. Here’s our quick guide.
Lavender and lilac
Similar but distinct, these two colours offer a dusty but elegant colour palette to play with. Both are light and fresh, and the combination allows you to play around with various shades and hues without rigidly sticking to one or the other.
Dusty rose and green
Shocking or bright pink can be a little too bold for many, but a dusty rose combined with natural floral greens is a great way to incorporate it in a more versatile way.
Black, white and gold
A true wedding classic combining the simple elegance of contrasting black and white with the glamour and sparkle of gold.
Blues are quite limited in the natural world, at least in terms of flora and foliage so bring in your blues through fabrics and decorations. Blues can work in any season, with a range of shades reflecting different moods.
Vintage red and peach
Bright red is perhaps not the most natural wedding colour so this slightly offset vintage alternative lets you play with bold colours that don’t dominate everything else.
Tying the knot on New Year’s Eve is a great way to combine celebrations. Everyone will be in the mood for a party, and it will be great fun seeing in the New Year as a newly married couple. What a way to start your new lives together. Here are some ideas to help it all go off with a bang.
You can’t have New Year’s Eve without champagne. You can’t have a wedding without …well you get the idea. So why not buy in some Bollinger and dish out the Dom Perignon at a champagne bar?
Everything really will go off with a bang at midnight when the frieworks start going off.
Resolution guest book
Get all your guests to sign your wedding guestbook and state their New Year’s resolution. Then you can keep track of who is sticking to their guns throughout the year.
Midnight confetti drop
As the clock strikes midnight, shower your guests with confetti in an unforgettable moment.
New You favours
Send your guests away with a goodie bag that will help them get over their new year hangovers.
So, somehow we’re just a few days away from Christmas once again, and 2017 reaches its end. It’s been another fantastic year here at The Wedding Portugal, doing what we love best: planning and delivering stunning weddings in one of the most beautiful countries on the planet.
From vineyards to castles to sun-kissed beaches, our happy couples have celebrated in style throughout the year and there’s more to come in 2018.
If you’re thinking about tying the knot in the coming year or even beyond, then have a look at our website to find out more about the comprehensive planning services we offer, our stunning venues or to look at the gallery of the weddings we’ve staged over the last year. Get inspired by our decoration ideas, and start thinking about your own big day. Or you can get in touch to have a chat about your plans.
And in the meantime, have a wonderful festive season full of joy, love and happiness.
In last week’s blog, we detailed five very good reasons why you should always enlist the help of a wedding planner. But you didn’t thing we were done there did you? We could go on for weeks. But for now, here are five more very convincing ways a planner can help.
A useful advocate
Weddings can involve a healthy dose of politics. There are plenty of vested interests and not everyone shares the same ideas. A wedding planner can be a very useful mediator in tricky situations. Need someone to tell the mother in law to stop meddling? Then a planner has the skills and authority to do it without hurting anyone’s feelings.
We mentioned in last week’s post that a planner can help you bring it on budget. But did you know they could actually help you save money? Planners have contact networks that can actually save back the money you spend on them, making them an essential wedding tool.
Planners also know which vendors, services and venues you can trust to deliver exactly what you want. If you’re planning by yourself then it’s always a gamble using service providers you have no prior experience with.
Your wedding experience should be one you enjoy and remember fondly. A planner can make this happen, ensuring that you and your partner are happy and relaxed throughout the process.
Planners are expert listeners, knowing that it’s your vision that needs to be realised. They’ll take note of what you want, helping you to realise your dream.
Now, it might come as no surprise that we think that a wedding planner is an essential part of any truly magical wedding. But if you still don’t want to believe us, here are five very good reasons why we wedding planners are indispensable.
Unless you’re incredibly lucky, you probably have a budget for your wedding. Any when you start the planning process you will almost certainly realise that it won’t go as far as you’d like. That is, unless you have a wedding planner keeping on top of every penny, sourcing deals and using their extensive contact network to bring your wedding in on budget.
Your wedding day is supposed to be the best of your life. So do you really want to spend it worrying about why the caterers are late or why the tables have ben set up in the wrong place? Let a planner handle the details, leaving your free to enjoy your big day.
Once you and your planner have agreed upon your wedding ideas, they’ll fight tooth and nail to make sure you get everything exactly as you want it. Planners have a knack of being able to persuade venue managers, catering bosses and others that what you want is really the best thing for everyone. (Just don’t ask us how we do it).
During the course of your wedding day there are a thousand things that can go wrong. And it only needs one to happen for the whole thing to be derailed. Your planner will be there , keeping all the plates spinning so everything goes off with bang (and at the right time).
This may or may not be your first wedding (although with any luck it will be your last). But the chances are you’ve done this once or twice before at most, if it’s not completely new to you. A wedding planner will have done this several or more times a year, every year, perhaps even for decades. So, they’ve got the right experience. And believe us, it really, really helps.
OK, so it might be a little early to get into the Christmas spirit. But with only a month to go, it’s worth thinking about your plans. Here in Portugal, we do things a little differently over the festive period, but it’s just as magical. If you’re planning a Christmas wedding for 2018 (it’s a little late for this year) then here are a few things you can expect.
Don’t worry, Father Christmas (or Pai Natal as he’s called here) still visits on Christmas eve so you’ll have plenty of gifts to open. However, the Portuguese celebrate their traditional Christmas meal – called Consoada – on Christmas Eve rather than Christmas Day.
As you might expect, the dish consists of cod (what else?) with potatoes and vegetables. This is sometimes followed by shellfish and other expensive treats.
Christmas trees were only really introduced to Portugal in the 1970s but have become a firm family favourite. And, being a Catholic country, the nativity scene and story play a big part. Many people still go to mass after dinner on the 24th before returning home to open their gifts.
The traditional Christmas cake is called Bolo do Rei, or King’s Cake. Plenty of port goes around, and everyone indulges in a few azevias of felhozes – traditional sweet treats.
After Christmas (never before) people will go from house to house singing the Janeiras – January songs. The singers are treated to gifts of snacks, like dry figs, chorizo and cheese. Careful, as if you don’t offer them snacks, they might sing songs about you (but it’s all in good fun).
As is the case all over the world, Christmas in Portugal is a time for family fun, tradition and generosity. So if you’re planning a winter wedding, you’re in for a real treat.
Ok, so we’re still not done with 2017 but look around you at the shops and you’ll notice Christmas decorations everywhere. And with the festive period fast approaching, it also means that the New Year is just around the corner. Besides, it’s never too early to start planning your wedding. In fact, maybe we should be focusing on 2019?
But for now, here are some top ideas for wedding trends for 2018 to give you a little inspiration.
Navy is the new black
Instead of the classic black and white theme, many brides and grooms are opting for a classic dark blue. Navy for bridesmaids dresses is also going to be big.
Formal is back
Over recent years there has been a lean toward more informal weddings. But in 2018 informal is back. Tuxedos, classical flowers and more. Just remember that formal doesn’t have to mean stuffy.
Moving away from traditional wedding fare, couples are looking at roll your own sushi, Korean barbeques and even more exotic food to make their wedding stand out.
As well as the main meal, puddings are big in 2018. Of course, the wedding cake is a main attraction but don’t forget about the dessert, and be creative.
As the autumn slowly comes to end giving way to winter, there’s a whole new season of weddings on the horizon. If you’re tying the knot at this time of year, there‘s a whole load of wedding ideas and inspiration to make your winter stand out. Here are just a few of our favourites.
Every wedding needs flowers. Every wedding needs ice. Why not combine the two in an eye catching ice sculpture complete with incorporated flowers? It’s a real show stopper, and practical too (sort of) if you create sculptures with a purpose, such as champagne ice buckets.
Warm and wintry textures such as velvet and leather help to give your wedding luxurious feel. Choose winter colours such as burgundy and dark green, and be creative with where you use it. Think ring boxes, grooms outfits, bouquet wraps and more.
Keep your guests warm, cosy and in the mood with a selection of hot drinks. This could be everything from hot chocolate to something a little more fun, such as hot toddies or mulled wine and cider.
A true white wedding complete with snow can be incredibly romantic but the chances are you’ll get grey, miserable and rain. So why not plan a winter wedding escape here in Portugal where even in deepest, darkest December you’ll get endless sunshine and mild temperatures. Sounds tempting doesn’t it?
Once the home of Portugal’s kings and queens, the village of Sintra is one of the most unique destinations in the country. Nestled at the feet of the Sintra mountains, this forested village is home to some of the most unusual buildings including pastel coloured palaces and ancient Moorish castles.
Sintra is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and with its palaces, mansions and monasteries, is the perfect destination for a romantic Portuguese wedding. It’s also close to Lisbon as well as the Atlantic coast. Cabo da Roca, the most westerly point in Europe is just a few miles away, with its stunning views of the rugged coast.
Sintra is also well known for its gastronomy, with traditional dishes such as suckling pig, as well as sublime seafood readily available.
With so much architectural heritage, an incredible selection of wedding venues and an enviable location, Sintra is one of the most popular locations for Portuguese weddings. Is it any wonder that Lord Byron referred to the place as a ‘glorious Eden’? When you visit the lush gardens and majestic mansions it’s easy to see why.