My Top 10 Most Asked Questions!
“I’ve never done this before, so I have no idea where to start”
Every new couple I meet with, even those who have been married previously, have questions regarding the marriage ceremony and what they need to factor into their planning, and every couple I have “worked” with, will know that I take at least 15-20 minutes at the beginning of our initial meeting to establish what to expect during their wedding ceremony planning journey, but I will ALWAYS allow for a question/answer time, (once we have discussed all the important things like whether or not they have found their dream wedding dress!) as i know at least one of these following questions will pop up!
Main Photo Credit: Loco Photography
Let’s start at #10 and work our way through to the #1 most popular question.
10. “IN YOUR OPINION, WHAT MAKES A GREAT WEDDING CEREMONY?”
I believe this is very similar to asking someone what, in their opinion, makes a great holiday?
Every couple is different. A great wedding is one that is absolutely perfect for you.
It should reflect not only who you are, but also what you love, and what you consider important in life.
It should be fun/romantic/sweet/hilarious/serious/formal/casual/lighthearted/traditional/ totally random or all of the above, but most of all, it should be meaningful to you, should be memorable for all the right reasons and should create all the feels you would like to see shine through in your photos – your memories of that one big moment you will come back to for the rest of your life.
Finding a marriage celebrant with whom you feel confident will create this magical moment with you is SO very important, so please take the time to get to know a few of us!
Photo Credit: Candid Captures
9. “WHAT DO YOU (as a celebrant) NORMALLY WEAR?”
Whatever you would like me to!
This is something I will always discuss with every couple, to ensure I complement their colour scheme and dress code on the big day. In fact I wouldn’t mind at all if you requested a specific colour dress that I didn’t already have in my wardrobe – any excuse to buy a new frock is a great one in my opinion! But don’t worry, unless it is specifically requested, I will NEVER wear white, in any form – that is for the bride and the bride only!
Photo Credit: Ben Differding
8. “CAN OUR VIDEOGRAPHER CONNECT TO YOUR YOUR PA?”
Absolutely! It means, in many cases, that you will have a much better quality sound for your wedding video, and I’m all for working with your suppliers to ensure you receive the best outcome in every aspect of your planning!
You are also welcome to pass on my details to them so they can contact me in the lead up to the big day to discuss any connection requirements.
Photo Credit: Gerard Assi
7.“WE’RE QUITE SHY, DO WE REALLY NEED TO USE MICROPHONES?”
In short, no, as long as your two official witnesses are close enough to hear you state your legal intentions.
The long answer is, your family and friends have all come along to hear you make a lifelong promise to one another and are so excited to be able to witness such an important moment in your lives, so unless you prefer that they sit and wonder what on earth it was that was said to make you smile, laugh, cry or all of the above, then yes, microphones are always a good idea, but I promise I won’t make you hold it yourself, i fact I’m happiest holding the microphone for you so you can concentrate on sharing the beautiful words you have written for each other!
Photo Credit: Vlad Savin
6. “WHAT SHOULD WE DO IF OUR BABY STARTS CRYING IN THE MIDDLE OF THE CEREMONY?”
Babies cry. It’s a fact. If you have young children, the best thing to do is NOT assume that it will be a magical day where they won’t cry at all. The best thing to do is to accept that they probably will, so be prepared for that, and always have a nominated carer on hand to keep an eye on them at all times so you don’t have to!
I have conducted many ceremonies where young children are involved and I find it all works out for the best when you simply follow their lead and go with whatever happens on the day.
If they want to be held by one of you for the entire ceremony, then let them. Their squishy little face between you when you share your first kiss as a married couple will be captured by your photographer and will provide you all with the best memory in the years to come.
If they want to sit on the ground at your feet and play with the flowers/dirt/sand/grass/ shoelaces/ empty ring box/ cracks between the floorboards or anything else that amuses them, then let them.
If they want to be held by you one minute, then your mum the next, or the bridesmaid or groomsman, or any other random guests that captures their attention, then let them.
And if they want to grab my microphone and say hello with a big cheesy (and sometimes dribbly) grin, then believe me, I will let them do that too 🙂
Don’t worry if they get dirty. Don’t worry if they don’t want to smile perfectly for the camera. Don’t worry if they rip off their flower crown/boutonniere/vest/jacket/ shoes before they’ve even made it down the aisle. And don’t worry if they want to stand up the front and pull faces at you, at your guests, at your photographer, or at me – it will be really funny (about a week later for you maybe), and everyone will look really happy in all your photos! Trust me.
Photo Credit: Kate Deagan Photography
5.“WHAT AGE WOULD BE CONSIDERED TOO YOUNG FOR A FLOWER GIRL/PAGE BOY/RING BEARER?”
Well, if they can’t walk down the aisle themselves, most would consider them too young.
Unless a parent carrying their child down the aisle adds significant meaning to your day, I would advise against it, as the parent can sometimes appear embarrassed, leading to a rather awkward start to the ceremony….
Photo Credit: Nicole Taranto Photography
4. “HOW LONG DO YOU NORMALLY STAY FOR AFTER THE CEREMONY?”
Long enough to a) Watch you receive lots of congratulatory hugs + kisses from your family + friends,
b) Pass your marriage certificate on to a nominated person of your choice (that you have already decided on in the lead up to the big day), c) Pack up all my equipment, and d) Give you a hug goodbye with my very best wishes for a fabulous celebration!
Oh, and if there is champagne going around, I may make a quick toast to your future as a new Mr + Mrs!
Photo Credit: ProShot Photography
3.“WE DON’T WANT A REHEARSAL, BUT HOW WILL WE KNOW WHAT TO DO ON THE DAY IF WE DON’T HAVE ONE?”
No problem at all! That’s what I am there for!
I will always discuss ceremony details at our final meeting leading up to the big day, to ensure that I understand your brief exactly regarding every moment of how you would like the ceremony to run.
I will meet you when you arrive and will discuss your entrance with your venue co-ordinator to ensure it runs smoothly. If you don’t have a venue coordinator, I will assist you with your arrival and your entrance.
I will show your bridesmaids where to stand after they walk down the aisle to ensure they are nice and symmetrical to the groomsmen. But if your bridal party is uneven, I will work with numbers to ensure you are all still positioned perfectly for photos.
I will guide you through every aspect of the ceremony from start to finish and will ensure both you and anyone else involved directly in the ceremony knows what they are doing and are confident in their individual roles. You won’t need to worry about a thing!
Photo Credit: Blumenthal
2.“WHAT WILL I DO IF I START CRYING DURING MY VOWS AND CAN’T SAY THEM?”
Again, try not to overthink this part.
In most cases, you have never done anything like this before, so how can you possibly imagine how you are going to feel and react? You can’t. So don’t even try. Just go with it, and like with everything else, be prepared for anything.
But know that I will always be there to help you through those ridiculously unpredictable emotions.
Trust me, I’ve done this a few times now and I’m pretty good at keeping those words flowing and turning sobs into smiles, but I will always let the tears with the feels fall if it means that your partner (and all your family and friends) can see just how much you mean to each other x
Photo Credit: Doux Wedding Corp
And the number one question most brides ask……..
1. “WHAT NAME DO I SIGN ON THE MARRIAGE CERTIFICATE AT THE WEDDING?”
Your maiden name! You have to actually sign the marriage certificate before you can be considered legally married and eligible for a change of name!
Photo Credit: Luke Lornie Photography
As I said, these are only MY top 10, but if you have any other questions in regards to your wedding ceremony (and there is absolutely no such thing as a silly one!) please feel free to contact me at any time!
Stephen & Leigh’s Colourful Winery Wedding
When Stephen first laid eyes on Leigh at a friend’s BBQ about four years ago, he thought she was way out of his league, but went on to impress her with his polite nature and perfect manners, so the pair soon struck up a friendship, bonding over a mutual love of movies, cocktails, ‘phat’ beats and the great outdoors.
They both grew to love the unconditional love they both provided the other with, as well as the freedom of being able to be completely who they truly were. It was fun, and comfortable, and felt so right, that marriage had definitely become an option for the future.
It was during a two-week road trip through New Zealand that Stephen entertained the idea of a perfect proposal, but after waiting for that perfect moment to present itself, it became apparent that he was struggling to keep his big secret, and after three failed attempts to work up the courage, finally asked Leigh to marry him on the final night of their adventure.
It may have been a huge source of anxiety for Stephen, but according to Leigh, it was private, and personal, and absolutely perfect.
The beautiful Mandala Wines in the Yarra Valley was the location in which Stephen & Leigh chose to become husband and wife. In a stunning lace Marianna Hardwick gown, Leigh quietly declared to her handsome groom that “you love me even when I don’t love myself” (before quoting Beyonce!), after which Stephen told Leigh “your beaming smile can brighten my darkest days, and your beautiful laugh brings me more happiness than anything.”
It was an absolute pleasure to share this moment with Stephen & Leigh and I hope they achieve all their dreams of travelling the world together, starting a family of their own and enjoying all the adventures that life will bring x
A huge shout out to the super talented Zosia from Aparat Photography for these stunning images!!
Stephen & Leigh | 16.04.2016
Celebrant: Meriki Comito
Ceremony & Reception Location: Mandala Wines
Photography: Aparat Photography
Ceremony Arch & Bunting: Created by the clever Groom!
Bridal Gown: Marianna Hardwick
Bridesmaids Dresses: Rodeo Show
Flowergirl Dress: H&M
Groom’s Attire: Joe Black
Bouquet’s, Boutonniere’s and Flower Crown: Debbie O’Neill
Cake & Bomboniere: The Bride’s own creations
Sharmaine & David’s Luminare Wedding
When I asked David and Sharmaine what marriage meant to them, they recited a quote, found via their awesome photographer, Jonathan Ong, that struck a real chord with them. It read, “love is a friendship set on fire – a combination of everyday life and magic bundled into one. Love has the unique ability to transform the webs and pillars of everyday life into silk and gold. It is more than a feeling or emotion, concept or theory; it is a being.”
After all the traditional Chinese customs in the morning, I was waiting with David on the rooftop deck at Luminare, when admitted that he was very much looking forward to seeing Sharmaine make her way down the aisle, and I’m certain that she most definitely exceeded his expectations as she stepped into the sunshine, absolutely exquisite in Anna Campbell.
When David and Sharmaine first met at University about 8 years ago, David recalled his first impressions of Sharmaine as being that she was very small…but very pretty! And Sharmaine admitted that she loves the fact that David is tall enough to reach all the things that she can’t!
All jokes aside, David & Sharmaine also share an incredible connection and found themselves wanting to share all the important moments in their lives quite early in their relationship, eventually leading to David’s amazing mid-air proposal.
Sharmaine said that she loves how well she & David understand one another and that he is so open minded, with the endearing quality of being both patient and impatient all at the same time.
And David said that Sharmaine is caring and compassionate and absolutely beautiful, inside and out, and loves that she supports him 100% in any decision he makes, always offering encouragement in any endeavour he decides to embark on.
Incorporating a hand fasting ritual to provide a visual representation of their commitment, Sharmaine & David’s hands were bound with silver & white ribbons to represent purity, peace, creativity & inspiration, before they shared their first kiss as husband & wife to the absolute joy of all their family & friends.
These exquisite images by Jonathan Ong captured every ounce of this couples’ outer AND inner beauty and the absolute pure love they both radiated & elicited. What an absolute pleasure it was to declare them husband & wife! xx
Sharmaine & David | 27.12.2014
Celebrant: Meriki Comito
Ceremony & Reception Location: Luminare
Styling & Florals: Tori Allen Events
Bridal Gown: Anna Campbell
Photography: Jonathan Ong
Videography: The White Tree
Ceremony Music: The White Tree
Tran and Damon’s Grand Hyatt Wedding
Tran and Damon connected quite randomly online one lazy Sunday afternoon about three years ago, and within two days, they were having their first meeting over dinner.
Tran loved Damon’s patient & calm manner, and Damon loved Tran’s energy & confidence, so not long after, Tran very considerately helped Damon pick out her engagement ring, and on the 29th March they married in spectacular style at The Grand Hyatt Hotel in a Vietnamese/Australian fusion ceremony.
These gorgeous photos by the super talented Alli Oughtred have captured all the love & joy of their day perfectly x
Tran & Damon provided their guests with an Order of Service titled “So You’re Going To Sit Through A Wedding
– A practical guide to not falling asleep and figuring out just what exactly is going on”.
It included interesting facts & past world events pertaining to their wedding date, a Sudoku challenge, the story behind the Tea Ceremony, all the details involving the wedding planning (ie. Dresses tried on = 2 & messages to bridesmaid = 900+) and of course, the names & titles of everyone involved in the wedding day!
Tran promised “to live by and protect what we build together”, before Damon vowed “to love you in good times and in bad, with all I have to give and all that I am, in the only way I know how – completely and forever.”
“You my kiss your bride!”
In keeping with an ancient Vietnamese custom, Tran and Damon chose to incorporate a traditional Tea Ceremony into their celebration, to serve as a formal introduction into each other’s families. This ceremony is usually performed at home before the wedding takes place – sometimes with a cast of thousands! – but as Tran & Damon planned to include only their parents, it was truly special to witness it as part of official proceedings, as it allowed all their guests (and me!) to experience it too. So beautiful.
These gorgeous shots were taken in ACDC lane in Melbourne’s CBD
Beautiful family photos were placed at the reception as a reminder of Tran & Damon’s younger days
and of the days their own parents became husband & wife x
Some of the best behaved children I’ve seen at a wedding – and they had a great time too x
Tran & Damon | 29.03.2015