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

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matt-avatar WhitenedFor the last 10 days the in-laws Peter and Kathryn have been back visiting a place that is very special to Dom and I – the Island of La Palma where our wedding was held. Peter and Kathryn have a holiday apartment over there and it was they that brought together so many elements on the day with the help of their contacts on the island and the storage space beneath the apartment that apparently remains filled to the brim with wedding paraphernalia from that fateful day! They tell me that going back to the Island often stirs up memories of our happy day, but sometimes it’s an unexpected sound that can take you back in time in a heartbeat and that’s exactly what happened towards the end of their trip! So I’m delighted to hand over the blog to my lovely mother-in-law to tell you all about it…


photo by ed peers

Sweet dreams are made from this!

Once again back in La Palma, an island my husband and I truly adore ( even though it produced the most dramatic weather for “the Gormless Groom” and wife to be’s wedding you could ever not want!!). We met Laly, with her colourful (red this time) stacked up hair, reminiscent of days gone by. She is the vibrant and dynamic owner of a bar renowned for good music on the sea front of Puerto Naos, Laly’s bar. We were greeted like long lost family members and she excitedly told us that Manola and his band would be playing on Thursday night.

For those of you not present at our daughter, Dominique’s wedding to our lovely son in law, Matthew, this was the band that they themselves chose in the January of the year they were married. The four of us had been out after another day of planning the wedding. They had fallen foul of ever finding a band, particularly as flamenco music was not their thing! All of a sudden a band struck up and people were jiving and beep bopping to the beat. Their eyes lit up and there was another “Daaad….” moment which I’m sure lots of fathers paying for weddings will recognise!!

The music played last night sent me whirling back in time…

The morning of the wedding when I cuddled my excited, oh so beautiful bride-to-be daughter, as we woke at first light.

The excitement of the gathering of the girls putting on of makeup and the sipping of champagne.

The pressing of Matt’s jacket which was a feat in itself, before it was hurriedly despatched to him.

The bus journey up the mountain after having already had to swop buses for a more durable one due to the worsening of the weather.

The most memorable moment of the day when the bride to be was swept into the church by a ferocious blast of wind. Her expression was priceless and her dress and red lipstick befitted the setting and the drama of the occasion.

The champagne and the impromptu music in the church as we were marooned in by the weather.

The speeches and food in the uniquely dressed restaurant by our theatre entrenched guests.

All of and each of these memories and many more enveloped in the music of the night…the band, the musical appearances from our own guests right down to the special request by me for the bride to sing herself.

As the band finished playing my last memory flickered past like the Chinese lanterns that floated over the Atlantic Ocean on the night of the 30th of October 2012.


photo by Ed Peers

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Our Story Frame this week features the grand vistas of Yorkshire’s Castle Howard as the beautiful Tara and her doting father made their grand entrance ready for Tara & George’s elegant wedding. Those few moments just before the ceremony as the bride prepares to see her soon-to-be husband at the head of the aisle are so special: the nerves, the excitement, the anticipation… and clearly one or two onlookers have gathered to take in all the excitement!
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It’s Friday Fight-Out time once again and this week we’re thinking about where is best to get ready in the morning, at the same location as the venue or booking into separate hotels before journeying on. So which is best? Time to find out!


In the Red Corner, fighting to get ready away from the venue in separate hotels, even though that does involve her potentially having to navigate to an additional location which is an altogether frightening prospect, it’s Dom “The Tog Bride”.

In the Blue Corner, fighting to get ready on site, probably so you have more time for breakfast and writing your speech in the morning, it’s Matt “The Gormless Groom”.

At the Venue Vs Separate Locations


Dom: It’s nice to have different scenery and allow the venue to feel really fresh and new when you arrive. The anticipation of reaching the place you’re going to be married is really exciting and might be reduced if you’ve already been there all night.

Matt: It’s so much convenient already being on site in the morning and means you can have a much more relaxed start to the day.

Dom: For your photographers having an additional location helps to make the story feel more complete and provide some more creative options to make some really exciting images.

Matt: If you stay over on site then you can invite friends and family to do the same and almost extend the wedding celebrations to the evening before and the morning after the wedding as everyone will still be together.

Dom: If you’re staying at the same location as the wedding then you don’t get to travel to the venue and make your grand entrance in your beautiful wedding car!

Matt: If you’re looking to decorate the venue yourselves then staying there the night before means you can get everything set up well into the evening before retiring straight to bed and quickly and easily finish anything off in the morning without fear of being late to the venue! After all this is clearly a venue you love if you’ve chosen it as your wedding venue and it’s nice to have that consistency through the stay and the wedding itself.

Dom: It doesn’t have to be a hotel you get ready in, getting ready in your family home can be really lovely for sentimental reasons as well as practicalities of having everything you need already on site.

Matt: If you’re staying in separate hotels you will need to factor in extra time for tidying the room and checking out etc. which no-one wants to have to do on their wedding day and that can end up taking a lot longer than you expected. Leaving the pandemonium in a room you’re coming back to later is much much easier!

Dom: Accommodation at the venue may be quite limited in terms of space, whereas choosing a bigger location (such as your home) can allow more people to be there and mean there’s no problem bringing everyone’s clothes and having things hanging up rather than in suitcases and then needing ironing!

Matt: There’s always a risk when staying off-site that you might get stuck in traffic or held up by factors outside your control which can really delay the day and throw you immediately off schedule.


So those are our thoughts but where do you stand? Leave your comments to join the debate or place your vote below!

The Great Getting Ready Debate!
Getting Ready at the Venue Vs Separate Locations
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Bhavna Profile PicWow, what a fantastic few weeks it has been, I’ve just got back from an amazing four day wedding and I’m buzzing with excitement. I love a big fat Indian wedding, I always have a huge grin on my face on the day and then when I start editing that wedding too, I love re-living those fun moments. It’s just a sheer joy.

By now you’ll no doubt be up to date with Sikh weddings and all the pre-wedding rituals it entails. Similarly Hindu weddings have a varied set of pre-wedding events and ceremonies that take place.

I’m a Hindu Gujarati myself and had a massive wedding in Tanzania, with all the rituals, I must say they are long long days…with lots of prayers, but also lots of FUN.  The Hindu religion is steeped with tradition and customs, and every pre-wedding ritual has it own importance and meaning. Whether it be for peace, asking for blessings or just for some fun.

This is a guide about Gujarati Hindu weddings, there are other types of Hindu wedding ceremonies such as the Tamil Hindu wedding ceremony which has it’s own customs and traditions.

So as with the Sikh wedding guide, I’m going to break this down for you in two parts, there is just way too much information, and I certainly don’t want to overload you with it.


Pre-Wedding Rituals

Ganesh Puja:

This signals the start of all the wedding festivities, it’s a small ceremony where Lord Ganesh (the elephant God) is invited to be present to remove all obstacles and provide the newlyweds with happiness and prosperity. The ceremony involves the couple and their parents and is held simultaneously at the respective residences of the bride and groom, usually the day before the wedding.


A Hindu wedding takes place under a wooden canopy called a mandap, in the olden days this would be put up outside where you would need to dig the ground for the structure to stay in place. This ceremony asks for the blessings of Mother Earth for the digging to start. These days you will see that the priest will ask for some sand to be brought into a small pot into which they will insert a decorated wood log to mark that the significance.

Grah Shanti:

This is perhaps one of the most important puja’s (rituals) before a Hindu wedding. The puja is to seek blessings from the nine planets, and it is important because in Hinduism everything revolves around the sun, moon and the planets. So as to remove all the obstacles that may harm the marriage and to ask for peace and protection for the bride and the groom, this puja is conducted both at the bride and grooms homes usually straight after the Ganesh puja and mandvo.

the ultimate guide to a hindu wedding

Pithi (Haldi):

The Yellow stuff! Yes you see this all the time in Indian wedding photos, the bride or the groom are covered in yellow stuff that makes them look like a character out of the Simpsons. Well it ain’t the Simpsons, I tell you! This ceremony is so much FUN! I love watching the bride and groom getting plastered in the yellow stuff and then when they are all done, the bride and groom can apply it on the family members too, this is where all the mischievous cousins have a good time plastering each other with the haldi. I’ve even had it come flying onto my forehead!

Pithi, also known as haldi, is a paste made of turmeric, chickpea flour and rose water.  On the same day as the Ganesh puja and sometimes straight after it, the family members of the couple will apply the paste on the bride or grooms skin.

This haldi paste is meant to brighten and even the skin tone, so that the couple may have a glow on the wedding day.

Some believe, that if the bride or groom rub haldi on someone who is not yet married, it increases the possibility them getting married!


In Gujarati, mama means mums brother, so a mameru (meaning from the maternal uncles) is simply a ceremony where the bride receives gifts from her maternal uncle that includes the traditional panetar (the bridal silk sari with red border) and bangles.

ultimate guide to a hindu wedding bhavna barrette


Mehndis or henna nights as some may know them as, as fun events to celebrate the wedding. These are held usually a couple of days before the wedding and there is a lot of dancing and fun involved. This is when henna will be applied on the bride and other women in the family.


The Sangeet ceremony, as the name suggests, is all about dance and music. It is one of the most enjoyable ceremonies before the wedding and is sometimes held as a joint event with both bride and groom being present at the same time. It is seen as a time for joy and merriment amidst the hectic hustle and bustle before the wedding. There is a LOT of dancing that happens on this day.

As you can see the Hindu wedding ceremony is steeped in tradition and custom, there is a lot to take in, but there is a lot of fun to be had too. Every time I have been to a Hindu wedding, I have loved capturing these ceremonies, there is a kind of inner peace that you get from watching them being performed, and there has never been a dull moment either, there is so much happy chaos at these events, that without it, it wouldn’t feel like a wedding house!


I’m always greeted with a cuppa chaa everytime I go to these events, so that’s me sorted!

Have a great weekend!

Indian Wedding Photography by Bhavna Barratt
Profile picture by Tux & Tales Photography

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Today we have a little infographic for the sophisticated palette as the fantastic Roberson Wine have sent us a little info on how to make the perfect food and wine pairings to impress your guests through every stage of the day. So if you’re a little unsure what drinks you should be serving with those canapés or what would best compliment the cheese board then here’s all you need to know!


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