Planning your Special Day
Your wedding is a very special day for everyone because of all the wonderful and memorable things that happen. Planning your wedding is an exciting time for both to share. Choosing the ring, gazing at beautiful dresses, preparing your new home, all these take time. Eight or nine months before your day should give you plenty of time to enjoy all the preparations of getting married.
We at Munstone House have prepared a few helpful hints to ensure that your day flows as smoothly as the brides gown.
The first thing you will be planning for your wedding will probably be the budget. Talk between yourselves and your respective parents about the kind of service you would like. You may wish to married in a church or prefer a registry office – or even choose the Munstone House for your ceremony. This is possible as we hold a civil ceremony license. You will find that your parents will be an enormous help to you in discussing the budget. They will have a first hand knowledge of the best way to allocate the money. On your special day you will no doubt want the finest of everything so plan carefully the style of reception and honeymoon.
When you have decided, pay a visit to your vicar, registrar or minister and make arrangements for your marriage ceremony. They will be of great help to you both and will explain everything you need to know about walking up the isle and saying “I do”. If you wish, a rehearsal can be arranged to set you mind at ease and to assure you that it will all be perfect on your wedding day. Take this opportunity to apply for a marriage license if necessary.
Book Your Reception
When you have the date, arrange and book your reception. We will be more than happy to offer you any professional advice on catering matters, styles of seating arrangements and anything else you may be unsure of. You have probably discussed between yourselves who to invite so make a checklist. It is easy to forget somebody when you have so many people who want to be there on your special day. Think about your relatives and friends on both sides and write them down for your respective mothers to compile a guest list.
Bridesmaids and Best Man
It is now a good time to think of bridesmaids or attendants and the brides grooms aide – the best man. When your decision is made you can start shopping with them. This is especially exciting for the bride and bridesmaids going from shop to shop almost spellbound by the vast selection of beautiful gowns, dresses and fabrics available.
The bridegroom, best man and ushers can discuss their choice of attire. Top hat and tails can be hired inexpensively for the day or they could opt for the luxury choice of especially tailored suits.
The following checklists should prove to be useful when planning your wedding:
- Arrange printing of invitations
- Send out invitations
- Order the wedding cake
- Order wines
- Hire the wedding photographer
- Book the florist for the church and reception
- Order the cake boxes
- Arrange the display of presents
- Hire the wedding cars
- Contact the local newspaper for announcement
- Arrange entertainment for the evening
- Hire video company to film the event.
- Arrange the ceremony
- Choose the best man
- Hire morning dress
- Order flowers for the bride, bridesmaids and mothers
- Obtain registrars certificate if needed
- Arrange the travel for the honeymoon
- Arrange the cars to and from the church
- Prepare response to the bridegrooms toast
- Prepare toast to the parents
- Choose bridesmaids gifts
- Choose her bridesmaids
- Select dress for bridesmaids and yourself
- Book hair appointment
- Make a list of preferred wedding gifts
The Best Man
- Look after the rings
- Organise the cars from the church
- Reply to the bridesmaids toast
- Propose toast to the parents
- Return the bridegrooms and your morning dress
The Brides Father
- Double check the transport arrangements
- Order morning dress
- Respond to toast to the parents
- Choose dresses with the bride
- Help the bride to dress
- Chief bridesmaid takes charge of brides bouquet during the ceremony
- Serve portions of cake at the reception
Top Table Seating Plan
The information below is based on standard wedding etiquette, but is a guide only. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any specific requirements you have.
The Perfect Reception
At the reception the usual lineup waiting to greet the guests is as follows, the brides parents followed by the bridegrooms parents, then the bride and the bridegroom, then lastly the bridesmaids and the best man. This lineup ensures that both families have the opportunity to speak to all of the guests. But, conversation should be kept to a polite minimum as the queue can become unwieldy.
Most receptions begin with an appetizer of sherry or champagne served before the meal. Include non-alcoholic alternatives for children and those who are driving or who do not drink.
Toasts and Speeches
These would normally take place at the end of the meal and would accompany the cutting and distribution of the wedding cake.
The following is the usual order of proceedings:
- The bride and bridegroom cut the cake
- Toast “The Bride and Bridegroom”. This is normally proposed by the brides father or a close relative or friend of the family
- Toast to “The Bridesmaids”. This is usually proposed by the bridegroom following his response to the first toast
- The best man would then respond to the bridegrooms speech on behalf of the bridesmaids. He would also read the telegrams and a selection of cards to the guests.