As things begin to open up again we start to accept the new normal. While it won’t be the wedding day any of us planned, I think the brides who have postponed their day will agree the important thing now is to finally get married.
Based on the idea of receptions being allowed but all current guidelines being in place for the foreseeable, we started to think about what the new normal wedding day would look like. By the word reception we mean the traditional wedding breakfast and guests being allowed to stay at the venue after the ceremony.
As many of you know our new date is in October and we are 100% going ahead no matter what. Our venue have been fantastic and the current restrictions which we expect to stay until October include:
- All guests must wear masks (bride and groom are exempt)
- No loud music or dance floors (including any live music or DJ you may have hired)
- Social distancing
- Event staff and suppliers must be included in the guest numbers
The current magic number is 30 but we are hoping this will increase to 40 by October but who knows!
The first task was to get the guest list and whittle that down to the 30 people we wanted there on our big day. This sounds reasonable but when you start including the requirement people, this becomes a little harder.
For our day we need to include:
- Ourselves (of course!)
- The registrar
- 1 member of venue staff
- 2 catering staff (assuming receptions can go ahead)
- The photographer
Leaving us with just 23 guests. We are hoping to still have our photobooth in the evening but we have been advised as the registrar will leave in the morning these suppliers can swap in the numbers so we can keep to the 23 guests.
Cutting a guest list of 75 to 23 wasn’t easy and we do hope even 5 more people will be acceptable in October but we certainly aren’t holding our breath.
So the day will go ahead with our 23 guests and the morning will be very similar to what we are used to. I will get up with my bridal party and get ready for the big day as will the groom. Guests will gather at the venue (wearing their masks) and will be seated ready for the brides arrival.
One of the debates at the moment is the idea of the father giving the bride away. Under the current social distancing guidelines, everyone should remain 2 meters apart unless precautions are in place in which case you may be a meter apart. The couples aren’t required to wear masks under the new guidelines but the father or whoever is giving away will be required to wear mask. In this situation we recommend talking this over with the venue as it isn’t clear how this tradition is being handled. Some July and August brides have been given away as tradition while others haven’t been able to.
The couple will meet at the end of the aisle as usual and exchange their vows as we are all used to seeing. If you are having a religious ceremony there are other guidelines in place such as no singing which will also need to be discussed further with your Event Coordinator at the venue.
After the ceremony guests will be able to gather for a drinks reception and photos. While it isn’t always the case, most couples live together before their wedding day. As a result, the traditional couple wedding photos are still very possible as no social distancing is required between the couple themselves. However, group photos are now slightly more difficult and photographers are having to get creative with these shots. We are all so used to being told ‘squeeze in!’, ‘Get closer!’ and now we are being asked to spread out!
The traditional wedding breakfast can still be provided but guests must be sat further apart meaning more tables but less guests on each table. This doesn’t necessarily cause any discomfort or disruption to the day and if anything, can give the guests more space to enjoy themselves.
It is after the meal where couples need to get more creative and I feel entertainment such as magicians and comedians may become more popular within the wedding market. For our big day we will still have the photobooth for a bit of fun but also to create our photo guest book! Our venue has advised we will be able to stay until close around midnight but no loud music will be played. The beautiful courtyard will be kitted out with fire pits and the evening will have a very relaxed atmosphere. We are already coming up with quizzes and table games ideas for guests to enjoy as well as planning games such as Mr and Mrs to keep the fun going!
At the end of the day, the most important thing is to become a married couple and as long as this happens, your wedding day will be the most incredible experience.
If anyone reading this would like to discuss options for the new normal wedding day drop us a message! We would love to hear from you and inspire each other with new ideas. Our other blogs are available on our website here and we hope these will inspire you on your wedding planning journey.