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Ask the experts

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your Kent Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to editor@yourkent.wedding

To view more Q&A's on a different topic, please select one from the list below.

Hot topic: Wedding worries

Our experts tackle the questions you never even knew to ask

No place like home

No place like home

Q. Can we have our wedding at home or in the garden?

A. Karina O’Donnell says: At the moment, the law requires couples to legally wed in places officially licensed for marriage. However, if you're happy to consider separating the legal marriage registration from a celebratory wedding ceremony, then you'll have the opportunity to marry anywhere. And I mean absolutely anywhere!

You can make your vows to each other in areas of your chosen venue less commonly used by other couples, perhaps by a lake or in an area of woodland or, of course, at home.

The legal marriage registration currently costs £46 in Kent and is held in a register office, usually Monday to Friday. You can attend this basic ceremony the day, week or even years before your wedding or blessing ceremony, which would be created and presented by an independent celebrant.

It's not necessary to exchange rings or say vows, as these can be saved for the big day then you celebrate with your family and friends. By separating the legal from the celebratory ceremony elements, you have the freedom not only to choose where you hold your nuptials but also to pick the content and wording to reflect your personality and style.

Goodnight sweetheart

Goodnight sweetheart

Q. What happens at the end of the night?

A. Pippa Binham says: No one likes to think about their wedding day being over. However, that can mean that many couples forget to ask their venue about the practicalities of what will happen at the end of the night, leading to a whole host of other important questions: Is there on-site accommodation; are there hotels nearby; does the venue allow cars to stay overnight; can details of taxis be provided; is there a recommended minibus service? At Solton Manor, we have all of these bases covered!

Checking on all of these details ensures that when you have enjoyed your most special of days, it finishes in the right way too. So when choosing a venue, always remember to think about the end of the night – your guests will thank you for it, and you can relax knowing everyone will get home safe.

Fair trade

Fair trade

Q. How can I get the most out of a wedding fair?

A. Natasha Wadhams says: - Take a friend. Whether it's your future partner, bestie, mum or mum-in-law, bring someone with you who'll share the excitement of the day – and help to hold all the brochures, freebies and supplier contact details!

- If you've only just got engaged, have an idea of the time of year you'd like marry because suppliers get booked up very quickly.

- Take swatches of your palette with you, along with any cuttings from magazines that have inspired you.

- Have a diary handy so you can book in follow-up appointments with suppliers.

- Take a list of your wedding needs and likes, but keep an open mind; there'll be plenty of inspiration at the show to help in your decision-making.

- Be prepared to ask the suppliers for their advice, as they will have years of experience and will be delighted to guide you.

- If the wedding show is being held at the venue you've already booked or are planning to book, take time to have another good look around and chat with the wedding planners to find out more about what it has to offer.

It's good to talk

It's good to talk

Q. Do you hold one-to-one meetings with your couples?

A. Janet Wilson says: A meeting is an important part of the planning process. It gives the musician and the couple the chance to talk through all the arrangements, as well as performing music face-to-face.

Don't forget to find out what style of music they play. Harps are often stereotyped as classical, so many couples are surprised to hear that we don't specialise in that particular genre but in alternative, crossover, contemporary and original music. You may even find that they'll compose a piece especially for you, as we do.

The meeting is also a key time to go through any other questions you may have. For example, it's important to ask whether your entertainers have PAT certificates and public liability. Your venue will require these for any performances using electrical equipment such as amplification and microphones.

It may also be useful to know if they perform at more than one event a day. If they book by event rather than time, as we do, there'll be no problem if you're running late.

Floral harmony

Floral harmony

Q. How can I make all of my flowers work together?

A. Ellouise Hasler-Stott says: This is an important question when considering how the theme of your day is reflected in photos. Making sure all of your floral arrangements tie together and that everything matches gives a continuity to the look of the day overall.

The bride's bouquet should be filled with all the colours and varieties of flowers making up the theme, with the groom's buttonhole having the same mix. The next layer down will be the bridesmaids and best men, who will have simplified versions, showing clear links to the couple. This way, when everyone is photographed together, you can see a clear link between the whole wedding party. The same rule would be applied at the reception, with the top table displaying a mix and individual tables containing more simplified versions.

If you have a theme you'd like to carry through to the flowers, let your florist know so they can work with you to incorporate those hints. For example, blooms could be enhanced with delicate shells to reflect a coastal theme. It's these little details that will be picked up by your photographer, completing a set of photographic memories to last a lifetime.