Archive for Weddings

Weddings – Steps for Styling

More tips from our expert Lauren….

At the BIG step we are lucky to have a great range of wedding specialists to call upon as our experts for the advice sections of our website.


Charlotte Wood is a talented wedding and event stylist, with years of experience and impeccable taste. We asked her to share some of her wisdom and advice with us on how to visualize and style your wedding reception.


The best way to tackle your table styling is to determine the general feel you want to achieve for your wedding and try to carry it throughout every element of the day. Ideally, this starts from when your guests receive their invitation. If you haven’t decided on your theme when the invites go out, keep it simple, perhaps just tying in your chosen colour palette.

Wow factor. Your reception venue will really determine the look and style of your tables. The best venues to work with are the ones that can be used as a blank canvas. Rather than feeling disappointed that your venue doesn’t have a lot of decoration or is too minimalist, take this as an opportunity to really make the venue your own. Generally, venues suitable for weddings are large in size, which means they can often accommodate more rather than less. When people walk into your reception, you want a “WOW” to be their first impression – and you want your guests to remember that reaction. Don’t be afraid to use more than what you would use if you were dressing your table at home for a dinner party.

Don’t be afraid to get messy! By dressing each table slightly differently, you can create a high impact style that will be a real talking point amongst your guests. Although remember to keep the basics the same – i.e. choose flowers in the same colour but have different types of blooms on each table; alternatively, use clear glass holders in a range of heights and sizes, but have a slightly different collection on each table. This fits in nicely with the vintage look that is very popular at the moment.

Hire with a twist. If you are styling your wedding DIY, look for unusual items to hire. Good wedding stylists will have a range of items that are different from what is generally available through your “run of the mill” hire companies. Think birdcages, parasols, vintage votives and lanterns.

Pick a hero. At the other end of the spectrum is the idea of having one element that is the “hero” of your look. For example, single stems of flowers placed simply on the tables could compliment a bold pattern, such as a black and white design. The pattern is the “hero” in this case, which also means you can save money by accompanying it with a handful of flowers instead of ornate arrangements. Top tip: If you decide to mix up patterns on your tables, keep the colour theme the same.

Think outside the square. Look for different ways to use items. Sometimes traditional candleholders can work really well as vases, and vice versa. Small votive holders can also look really sweet with single stems of flowers.

Get help with the final stage. Decorating the tables always takes a lot longer than people anticipate. So if relying on friends or family, make sure you have more people enlisted to help than you would think. It would be very disappointing to spend a lot of money on your centrepieces and decorations only to walk into your reception to find they are not properly set up. Top tip – style a table yourself, photograph it and then give the photo to friends/family who will be setting up on your behalf.

For more tips and articles about styling and theming click here:

For more information on Charlotte Wood and her range of hire items click Here


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Top 10 Cost Cuts for your Wedding.

You want the wedding of your dreams, but the economy and your bank account are less than dreamy. No worries… Lauren form the fantastic wedding planning website has got some great tips to help you keep costs down!

  1. Recycle Heirlooms: If you have family heirlooms, reuse the diamonds or metal to make your wedding rings; or wear them on your wedding day to compliment your attire – they can double as your something borrowed and something old. It’s a great way to save money, but it’s also an eco-friendly alternative and a nod to the past!
  2. RSVP Online: Don’t worry about ordering return envelopes and postage for your stationery. Invite your guests to RSVP online via your theBIGstep wedding homepage.
  3. Lollies in the Middle: Instead of flower arrangements or other pricey centrepieces, fill glass vases or jars with candy. These can add colour to your tables and can be used as after dinner treats!
  4. Dessert with a Twist: Skip a plated or buffet dessert in favour of your wedding cake. Many couples are opting for less traditional cakes and choosing more favourable flavours, including mud cake, carrot cake, banana cake, or a combination of flavours to serve to their guests. Alternatively, get the girls together and bake a cupcake for each guest that you can arrange on a tower of cloth-covered boxes – a cute wedding cake and dessert in one!
  5. Hire your wedding dress: Dresses can be one of the most expensive items on the wedding budget list. You spend all this money for one item that you will never wear again. Many of the bridal boutiques hire out some beautiful gowns – no one needs to know and you can still look fabulous on the day in an amazing wedding dress. It is also common to hire bridesmaids dresses.
  6. Friends & Family: You will be amazed at how helpful and resourceful friends and family can be. Consider your guest list and ask around to see if anyone can source alcohol at wholesale prices, arrange your flowers, design your invitations, decorate your wedding venue, make your wedding cake or make you wedding jewellery.
  7. One Long Course: Feed your guests all evening without the cost of a 3-course meal! Replacing the traditional meal with a constant stream of canapés is a modern twist that will keep guests’ stomachs full while also keeping costs down.
  8. Candlelight: Candles can add elegance to a venue with the light of a match. Grab a bunch of different sized candles or a pile of tea lights from The Warehouse, Briscoes or Farmers, but don’t light them until just before your guests arrive, as you don’t want them burning out before the last dance!
  9. Palladium Rings: Palladium is a platinum group metal that, in its latest alloy composition, has an amazing similarity to platinum, but it wears like gold. It’s less expensive than gold and considerably more affordable than platinum, but feels like one and looks like the other!
  10. Hire: If you search carefully you will find that there are businesses out there that hire all sorts of interesting bits and pieces for a wedding. From the big item things such as marques to crystal chandeliers – right down to small accessories to decorate your table with.

The key things when trying to save money on your big day are to research, shop around and think outside the square.

Good luck and happy planning!

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Get the Right Photographer for Your Wedding

A good wedding photographer should have the ability to really capture mood and emotion with their photographs even with excitement and distractions of the day going on around them.

Choose a photographer who is within your budget and whose quality and style of photography is consistent with your tastes.

Meet up and discuss the types of pictures they will be taking, how many and let them know exactly what you want.

Book and pay deposit early so you don’t miss out on the photographer of your choice.

Top tip! It’s a great idea to have as many photos as possible taken before the ceremony when every one is still fresh.

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Chair covers – who knew?


My first introduction to chair covers was joining Hire Things. I’d never even heard of them before that. O f course I got married 15yrs ago so that might have something to do with it…

We had several listed on Hire Things that were being hired out with astonishing frequency. What was this all about? I did some research!

I found that chair covers are used to …

Hide  worn and tired chairs

Add elegance and create an amazing atmosphere

Unify the room and create a complete look that all works together.

Transform everyday rooms ( or beaches) into amazing places!

Well there you go, now I know. My wedding in the very utilitarian local yacht club could certainly have benefited from a transformation!

They certainly make a difference to your venue that table clothes and flowers only start and aren’t just for weddings. You can totally glam up any event instantly by ordering the complete package.


There’s a rainbow of colours available as well as different designs and textures – I’m quite partial to these paua coloured ones myself. You can find the right style to fit for your chairs

Starting from $4 each you can get them delivered and even put on the chairs for you, a bargain!


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Top Tips for Wedding Speeches

Congratulations. What a day to look forward to. A Wedding day is a   day that families and friends will remember for the rest of their lives.

So… its important that everything on this special day is memorable and a pleasure for all-including the speeches.

A Wedding speech is often very personal and its content has to be appropriate to those being acknowledged. Whether you’re the groom, bride, best man or father of the bride making a speech can be made easier with some well chosen advice, a little help and thought.

The following considerations will ensure the speech making part of the day runs smoother and also give some guidance to all the speakers.

Seven points to Consider when deciding your Wedding Speech Process

1. Don’t get carried away and have all and sundry speak. Too many speakers may weary the guests.

2. If at all possible avoid last minute requests by people to speak.

3. Don’t force anyone to speak if they really don’t want to.

4. Encourage those who are concerned about their speech to seek expert help.

5. Look for an MC who is comfortable and confident speaking in public.

6. Ensure you brief the MC on your expectations regarding; their role, length of introductions, tone, jokes and flow.

7. Speakers should know well in advance of the wedding that they are going to speak.

Seven essentials that will increase success: for all speakers

1. Commit time to your speech preparation and give it your undivided attention. Don’t think it will be okay to think of something on the day.

2. Find out what the purpose of your speech is and do the bride and groom have any expectations.

3. Ask for HELP if stuck, unsure or need guidance.  It’s good to get somebody else’s opinion and it is only an opinion.

4. Don’t embarrass the bride or the guests.

5. Don’t think it has to be hilarious by including plenty of unrelated jokes. Try and get a balance of sincerity, real life stories and humour.

6. Keep your speech relevant and don’t ramble.

7. Practice. Practice in front of someone else and ask him or her to give you honest comment. Small adjustments in critical areas often make a major impact.

About Bruce of Wedding

I have been helping people with their wedding speeches for a number of years. Assistance can be in person, by phone or email. My approach to wedding speeches certainly makes speech making easier.

All assistance is based on the speaker’s personal requirements and ranges from general advice to major involvement.


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