EXPERT ADVICE

FAQs and expert advice about venue styling

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

Venue Styling

Venue Styling

Q What do you expect to see in 2024 when it comes to wedding venue styling trends?
A Claire Smith says: Welcome 2024! Always exciting to start a new year looking at new ideas and colours for the coming season; so what do we expect to see?

Looking at trends both in wedding décor and in interior design, which always has an influence, the use of bold colour is expected to be big this year, with hues such as olive green and cobalt blue predicted to be everywhere.

One phrase which really caught my eye recently, and I think beautifully sums it up, is: 'decorate in a colour which makes you happy'. You deserve the day of your dreams, so make it to your taste, that way you will always look back at your images with a smile. Combine a warm, cosy palette of more neutral colours, then add in bold accents in your favourite colour, to give it drama and a more personal touch.

Here (pictured) we applied that principle; we used shades of nude and champagne but then added accents of bold dark red, and used black stands and frames to add depth and drama.

We also expect large statement floral installations and arches to remain big this year, replacing the more traditional backdrops, as they are much more Instagrammable.

Claire Smith, The Creative Venue

Let It Snow

Let It Snow

Q What is your advice on creating an elegant winter wonderland wedding?
A Karina O’Donnell says: It's easy to infuse a wintry feel into your wedding with the use of props, festive lights, or seasonal decor, but what about the actual ceremony and words? As independent celebrants we can help you to craft vows with winter-related vows such as: " I promise to keep you warm throughout the coldest of days," or, " I vow to be your constant like the North Star in a winter's night sky."

You could select wintry readings, which centre around themes of love, warmth and togetherness amidst the chill of winter, such as Invitation to Love by Paul Laurence Dunbar or Life is Unpredictable by Erin Hanson.

Instead of your guests throwing confetti, how about walking back down the aisle to falling snow from a snow machine and being toasted with a glass of mulled wine or a winter cocktail? How about a marshmallow toasting mini-ceremony? Imagine the fire of love melting hearts (aka marshmallows) and being sweetened by a dip in warm chocolate. My imagination is running wild now but you get my snowdrift!

Remember that while adding wintry elements to your ceremony can be charming, it's essential to strike a balance so that your ceremony remains personal and meaningful to you and your partner.

Karina O’Donnell, Simply Ceremonies

Light it up

Light it up

Q This issue we asked the experts how to inject your wedding days with the spirit of spring.
A James Kerry says: We have three top tips when it comes to bringing the beauty of spring to your wedding.

• Bursts of colour. You don't have to rely solely on nature to provide you with a stunning floral backdrop. You can use both real and faux flowers for bouquets, table decorations, flower crowns, baskets full of colourful petals for the flower girls, the list goes on and on. Our range of rustic, light up letters and vintage selfie picture frame come with decorative blooms, whether you like pastel or bright sunflowers. For an extra pop of colour you can also hire our candy bar, which comes decorated too, and let your guests fill their sweetie bags with their favourite pick'n'mix.

• Festival flair. Our mobile bar comes stocked with freshly-prepared cocktails, Pimm's, locally-produced drinks and artisan gins to give your guests that festival feeling.

• Mood lighting. In the spring it can still get dark quite early, so make sure your focal points aren't just decorative during the day. Our illuminated rustic letters and candy bar light up the night with bright yet warm yellow light. They're the perfect backdrop for photos or your dancefloor. You could also use fairylights and clusters of LED candles for your table decorations.

James Kerry, Powder Mill Productions

Best of the season

Best of the season

Q How can we give our venue styling an autumnal twist?
A Kylie Christie says: Start with your base when planning your reception tables, and you can create an autumnal style simply by using textured linens, coloured fabric runners or accent with a coloured napkins in burnt oranges, rich reds, and browns.

There are many fantastic autumn-hued florals, foliage and dried flowers available for centrepieces. Consider using amber-coloured glass, lanterns or hurricane vases with candles for an inviting glow.

Include natural elements such as wood, leaves and pinecones – you can forage or source these easily and they'll store in advance of your wedding. Use seasonal produce such as gourds and munchkins as accents, and scatter nuts, leaves and red apples around your centrepieces to add texture and interest.

Recycled and seed paper stationery has an amazing colour and texture. Alternatively, you can write your guests' names on dried leaves or tie them to pinecones to greet them as they take their seats. Your loved ones will adore seasonal favours too. Source or have fun making your own red toffee apples, or honeycomb pieces for a fun seasonal twist.

Kylie Christie, The Old Kent Barn

Winter wonderland

Winter wonderland

Q I've always dreamed of a winter wedding and the venue is booked for December. How can I style it tastefully to reflect the season with a touch of class?
A Blessing Enakimio says: Oh, we do love a winter wedding! For December nuptials most venues will have a Christmas tree set up, so it would be great to incorporate that into your staging by sitting your big-day bake next to it. Taking inspiration from the tree and the season, let's go for whites to reflect the crisp weather at this time of year. Utilise lots of foliage in the flower arrangements and various shades of grey will bring the outside in. Plus, silver embellishments will add a sparkle or two – after all, you can never have too much bling!

If there's an open fireplace at your venue, why not make the most of it and heat up the space with crackling cedar logs and cinnamon sticks to activate the sense of smell, creating a nostalgic ambience. Drape a large garland over the mantelpiece with matching florals as the centrepieces on each table and large cathedral arrangements on pedestals along the aisle and in various focal points.

Place overlay lace linen on top of white tablecloths on all of your tables, and have silver charger plates underneath your dinner plates with silver-rimmed glassware. Go for tall silver centrepieces like candelabras to hold your green and white floral displays. Finally, silver chivari chairs are perfect to complete the look.

Whatever you do, make it about you and enjoy the process.

Blessing Enakimio, Blessing by Blé

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