Bride Vs Groom » Wedding Experiences & Guidance for the Bride & Groom

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Today we’d like to share a little information you might not know about wedding traditions by one of the country’s most traditional organisations – the Royal Mint. As you’re about to find out the silver sixpence has a very special yet oft forgotten place in wedding tradition and so, to make sure you have the best of luck on your wedding day, the Royal Mint have collected a limited number of authentic vintage silver sixpences struck between 1920 and 1946 to have with you on your big day. You can find out more information via the link at the bottom of the page but first let’s find out exactly why every bride should have one…


You’ve probably heard of ‘something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue’. But, did you know that it originally ended ‘…and a silver sixpence for her shoe’? And do you know what the other traditions mean?

To get more information, we asked the experts The Royal Mint to explain popular wedding traditions and how they came about.

Something old: This represents the bride’s link to her family and her past, which she carries with her as she enters into married life. Often a mother or grandmother will provide an item so that it’s a true connection to the family.

Something new: Symbolises the future and looks forward to the next chapter of the bride’s life as a married woman. This can be anything bought for the day – whether the dress, flowers or wedding ring – so it’s easily ticked off.

Something borrowed: This is an interesting tradition. The theory goes that the bride should borrow an item from a happily married woman, so that in borrowing the item she is always symbolically borrowing some of the happiness of the woman who loaned it.

Something blue: Many people assume that a white dress is meant to represent the purity of the bride, but actually it’s ‘something blue’ that symbolises faithfulness, purity and loyalty. This one’s often quite subtle – whether it’s blue nail varnish, a blue garter, or a small section of blue fabric.

…and a silver sixpence for her shoe: Traditionally, the father of the bride would place a sixpence in his daughter’s left shoe just before she walks down the aisle to wish her luck and happiness in her marriage. Since the silver sixpence was taken out of circulation it’s become harder to follow this tradition, but The Royal Mint has released a limited number of vintage silver sixpences struck between 1920 and 1946 so that the tradition can continue.

Chimney Sweep: There are lots of theories about the origin of this tradition, but in the UK it’s considered lucky to meet a sweep on your big day. This can be inviting them along as a guest, or even just shaking their hand on the day of the wedding. Some sweeps actually hire themselves out as wedding guests for this reason!

Horseshoe: The horseshoe is an ancient symbol of good luck – but as it’s ‘U’ shaped, it’s meant to be held upright to so that the good luck is kept in. The horseshoe can’t be turned upside down or the good luck will fall out. Some brides carry small horseshoes attached to their wedding bouquet, or use them as decorations during the service.

Spider on the wedding dress: Although most brides might think this as a nasty surprise, finding a spider on your wedding dress has always been claimed to be lucky in Old English lore. That said, we’re not sure how many people would keep it on to walk down the aisle!


If you’d like more information, or to purchase an authentic vintage silver sixpence from The Royal Mint to add a traditional finishing touch to your big day, you can find more detail here:

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Dom Matt Pad Photo Video1On Friday we were pleased to see the BBC reporting on something close to our reader’s hearts – how to have a wedding on a budget. Weddings are undeniably incredibly expensive and we’re always pleased to share any top tips for making some savings on the big day to help all brides and grooms to get the wedding of their dreams for a budget that isn’t going to break the bank. As we read though we were a little surprised at some of the contents…

“Tessa O’Sullivan is getting married in a few months time and continues to be surprised at how much anything wedding-related seems to cost.

“Every time I call a supplier – whether it’s a florist or the printers – the quotes I get are always so much higher than I expect,” she says.

“It’s like you need to add a zero on anything that is wedding-related. Everything seems to cost so much,” she adds.

This wedding “premium” appears most stark when pricing a photographer.

One London-based professional quoted £1,500 for nine hours work at a wedding.

When we asked how much it would cost for him to photograph a 25th wedding anniversary – also for nine hours – his price fell to a far more palatable £680.”

Now we have read many articles over the years commenting on the “wedding premium”, often hard fought by wedding professionals desperate to dispel this ill-conceived myth. So, as wedding professionals ourselves we’re going to let you into a little secret… the wedding premium exists. Weddings are undoubtedly likely to cost you more than most other events and, as the bride and groom desperate to create your perfect day on a limited budget it can understandably seem that zeros are just being added on at the mere mention of the word wedding because they probably are. What’s less well-reported though is that those zeros are being added on not because of greed but because (amongst other factors) the level of work involved in a wedding is far greater than those other events that they might also be quoting for…

To use an example perhaps more relevant to any writers currently constructing a similar article about wedding pricing i suppose it would be the equivalent of being paid for 9 hours work writing 300 words on a topic in which you’re already an expert or being paid for 9 hours work to write a 3000 word essay on a topic that will require you to do a lot more research and meetings about beforehand and that is likely to require several days of editing by a particularly demanding editor afterwards. Oh, and it has to the the best thing you’ve ever written. Both are effectively quoted as 9 hours of writing so they should be charged at the same rate, right?

But to better illustrate the point let’s use the example provided by the article in question – the wedding photographer who “quoted £1500 for nine hours work at a wedding” whilst quoting a more palatable £680 for 9 hours capturing a 25th Wedding anniversary it’s important to consider what is actually required of the photographer for these two seemingly similar events. We of course don’t know the specifics of what the particular photographer in question was offering for each price but based on our own and some of our colleagues experiences of capturing both types of event here is a quick comparison of some of the things we might expect the two events to entail for the photographer:


This is just a quick example and of course some of these elements may vary depending on the individual event and photographer but of the photographer the anticipated level of work when quoting for these two events is vastly different. There are many more factors than just these as to why wedding photographers charge what they do, from the increased level of pressure to the probably £6000 – £30,000 worth of equipment they carry around with them to the simple fact that behind the scenes they’re probably doing 18 hour days 7 days a week to be their own marketing department, admin assistant, accountant, driver, blogger, photographer and editor so that they can keep living that dream of charging all that money and just doing “9 hours work” every Saturday.

We could provide similar examples for other wedding suppliers seemingly adding that infamous wedding premium but the simple fact is that those extra zeros aren’t just appearing from nowhere. There are so many great ways to save money on your wedding and we hope we can help you out along the way, but when it comes to the wedding premium it’s about premium service over price, and if you ask us that’s something worth paying for.

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  • Jaye Cole | Tux & Tales Photography - July 24, 2014 - 9:56 am

    BRAVO! This is the best response I have seen to this article yet – your breakdown & analogy is fantastic.

    I think that what a lot of people are missing is that the average UK wedding photographer makes £25K per year. Not £100K. We work every weekend (and most weekdays) for months at a time for a very discerning clientele – often without days off.

    This concept that we are all greedily throwing ourselves into piles of cash is bonkers and so uninformed. But that is what passes for journalism these days – by the BBC no less. It is unresearched – nearly libelous – misrepresentation purely to feed into sensationalism.

    Did this BBC ‘journalist’ do any research on the other side of the fence?ReplyCancel

  • Rachael ~Marry Me Ink~ - July 28, 2014 - 8:05 pm

    Nail on the head! Great points.ReplyCancel

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matt-avatar WhitenedApologies, dear readers, for the lateness of this week’s Monday Musings but today has officially been one of those days where instead of starting my day with a quick whimsical musings about the week’s events I have instead been writing a detailed petition to the government in favour of cancelling Mondays altogether. As I write this it is officially time to go home, yet following arriving at the office to find a pile of emails stacked in the digital equivalent of a toppling tower of Jenga, a 3 hour argument with a printer (one which the printer inevitably won despite my best attempts to make it print various profanities about itself), various lovely yet time consuming meetings and the general fact there is not enough tea in the world, my original to-do list for the day is yet to actually be started. Although we have simultaneously spent much of the day mulling over tomorrow’s post which is one to look out for!

I officially hate Mondays.

So this week’s Monday Musings are, quite literally, musings about Mondays… I think these images adequately sum up my musings on the matter…



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Today our Story Frame comes from the wedding of Kira and Kevin at Northorpe Hall Child & Family Trust with a shot that sums up this fun-loving pair just perfectly… ROCK!
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Wedding Albums. In a world of digital imagery and photo-sharing sites somehow you still can’t beat the touch and feel of a real wedding album. In the old days of course there was little choice but to protect your prints by putting them in an album and, with the option to have your album professionally made by your photographer, this was often how you would receive the bulk of your images. Nowadays of course you’re far more likely to receive your images online or via DVD or USB stick first and consequently having received all of the images already, many couples are choosing to wait longer before putting together the final album. But should you really wait or is it best to ensure your album is included and delivered in the photography package itself?

Time to put it to the debate!


In the Red Corner, putting forth the case for purchasing your album separately at a later date, she’s a girl of expensive tastes when it comes to albums and still sounds worryingly close to buying one of each of the most expensive albums out there for her own wedding… it’s Dom “The Tog Bride” 

In the Blue Corner, arguing the case for getting your wedding album straight away, although admittedly he realises the sum total of his input to any wedding album would be nodding his head and saying “yes dear”, it’s Matt “The Gormless Groom”

Wedding Albums – Sooner Vs Later

Queensbury Wedding Albums

Dom: Your wedding album is something to be cherished by not only you but one day by your children and your children’s children and so you want to have something of lasting beautiful quality. Top notch, long-lasting albums are very expensive though and buying them at the same time can make the wedding photography prohibitively expensive at the time of your wedding, whereas if you wait for your album you can give yourselves the chance to save up again.

Matt: Seeing the files digitally can be great but for many couples it’s the anticipation of sitting around with their family and opening up their beautiful album for the first time and seeing those gorgeous prints that is really exciting and it’s lovely to have that as soon as possible after the big day.

Dom: But if you’ve already seen the files digitally isn’t it more exciting to wait and build that anticipation longer so that further down the line you get to experience that excitement about your wedding all over again when the album arrives?

Matt: Weddings are so expensive that sometimes it’s better to get all the costs out of the way at once and then rebuild your savings afterwards rather than have all that expense only to still be saving for more wedding related costs after the big day has been and gone!

Dom: In the old days of film photography there weren’t so many pictures to choose from for your album and selecting the best pictures to include was a relatively simple task. Nowadays you might be receiving hundreds or even thousands of images from your photographer and digesting them all and deciding which ones should make the album takes a lot of time to properly consider.

Matt: Many photographers also offer “parent albums” – smaller wedding albums just for the families which are a lovely way to say thank you for all their help leading up to the big day. If you leave it too long before giving the parent albums though the meaning behind it might be lost.

Dom: There’s so many exciting things happening around the time of the wedding that the album just doesn’t necessarily have the same impact if you receive it whilst you’re still in the “wedding bubble”. Albums can make fantastic anniversary gifts though and give you the chance to really bring yourselves right back to that magical date 1 year on.

Matt: A lot of photographers include the albums in their packages anyway and that being the case there is no financial advantage to delaying having the album made up.

Dom: Designing wedding albums can involve a lot of consultation and consideration and if you’re getting married during the peak wedding months then you may find that your photographer is so busy with other weddings that they may not be able to get your album completed until the quieter winter months anyway, so perhaps it’s better to wait and put more time into choosing your pictures rather than rush to get the pictures chosen quickly and still have to wait for the album to be finished.

Matt: Some photographers only hold onto the images for a limited time as storing all that data safely can be very expensive for them. If you wait too long they may no longer have the images to make up the album or you yourselves may forget all about it until it’s too late.

wedding albums - York Place Studios

So those are our thoughts but where do you stand? You can join the debate by leaving a comment or simply place your vote in our poll below!

[yop_poll id="51"]

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