With most couples, no sooner has the proposal been made and accepted and the engagement ring put on the wedding finger, than the burning issue of when and where to get married looms. And the minute you announce your engagement, absolutely everyone will want answers to those questions.
They’ll also want to know the season, formal or casual, destination or … The decisions are so numerous, in every way – from choice of location, time of day, time of year, cost, formality, informality, that the whole matter can be overwhelming.
Here are my suggestions to help you focus your choices and to give you a better idea of what will be the right venue, in every way, for your dream wedding.
· Is there a place that is very meaningful for you – such as where you first met,the location where the proposal took place, a favourite vacation spot, the family flower garden, horse farm or cottage?
· If there is such as place, would it make sense to get married there? Consider the ease of getting there for guests, size of the space (how many guests could comfortably fit into it?), where would out-of- town guests stay, how easy would it be to get a celebrant to do the wedding? Also consider the options for catering, photography, and music—can you fulfill your wish list in this location and is it ideal?
· Do you want somewhere formal or informal, traditional or not – a banquet hall, country club, restaurant or bar, or your garden?
· What size wedding do you want—a small intimate one or a larger affair with several hundred guests?
· What do venues for weddings cost? And to answer this, it would be worthwhile to pick a range of places and make some enquiries. A good starting point might be to contact a venue where you attended someone else’s wedding and which you really liked.
· You can then plug some of these numbers into your wedding budget as you begin drawing it up. This will likely, at the very least, narrow your focus on the type of place that will suit your needs best and fit what you have available to spend – e.g. restaurant versus banquet hall, friend’s garden versus country club, local versus out-of-town?
As with just about every aspect of your wedding, from budget to venue to guests to clothes to vows and celebrant, it all comes down to, what is THE most important part of the wedding for you?
Once you have answered that question, everything else will start to fall into place. Every couple will have a different response. There is no right or wrong answer. Go with the wedding venue and type of wedding that feels perfect for you.
And above all, enjoy!
Catherine Kentridge, Licensed Wedding Officiant
Custom Wedding Ceremonies