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

Masthead header

Ok chaps, if you’re anything like me you’ll have already spent weeks staring at various rings on the internet, trounced around a few shops, maybe even enlisted your best mate to help y0u (or at least buy you a pint between jewellers) and still you have no idea what kind of engagement ring your (hopefully) soon-to-be Mrs would want. Fortunately the guys at are here to help with a flow-chart infographic to help you on your way! Just try not to look too knowledgeable when you wander around the jewellers with your mates, trust me – you’ll get some very strange looks!



Share Button
back to topcontact bride vs groomtweet this postshare on facebookemail post to friend

matt-avatar WhitenedOn Thursday Dom and I celebrated our 2nd Wedding Anniversary, an anniversary apparently traditionally celebrated with cotton. However, after discovering that Dominique’s love of quirky traditions didn’t quite stretch to the idea of her spending our anniversary darning my socks with the rather lovely needle and thread I presented her on the eve of our anniversary I came swiftly to the conclusion that I needed a back-up plan. Fortunately I had one in hand…

Now, as evidenced by our dancing around the studio to one of the songs from The Muppets Most Wanted this morning, Dom and I are most definitely big kids at heart and so I decided that the only way forward was to go on a top secret adventure. And, as any fellow Famous Five fans will know, all great adventures start with a Steam Train.

After awakening the wifey with breakfast in Bed and a cotton dress purchased opposite our wedding venue in La Palma, she was whisked away with not a clue what was happening and we were dropped off near Pickering’s North Yorkshire Moors Railway station where a classic Steam engine awaited for our adventure to begin…


After a stop off at Goathland station (aka Hogwarts Station in the first few Harry Potter films) for a cup of tea (obviously) and a quick look around we jumped back on the train, Dom even more confused as to where we were actually going, particularly after I pulled out the champagne to toast the occasion! There really is something magical about travelling by Steam Train, particularly as I’m normally the designated driver and being able to drink whilst travelling is definitely something I can get on board with!

Now, as we all know from Peter Pan, no adventure is complete without a Pirate Ship…

We eventually pulled up in Whitby and, right on cue, as we walked along the harbour the old Whitby lifeboat was ready to depart, merrily flying the Jolly Roger and all set for an adventure on the high seas. Now the infamous curse has in the past meant that we never actually manage to achieve a boat trip (something Dom loves to do) but nonetheless out we sailed for a quick trip to see Whitby from the waves. (Our boat was a former lifeboat after all, how badly could the curse strike!)

After a voyage on some increasingly large waves we returned safely to harbour and had a nice walk through the gothic streets surrounded by some very strangely dressed figures in the run-up to Whitby’s Halloween celebrations! (Whitby was, after all, famously home to Count Dracula)! Now Dominique is intolerant to Wheat and Gluten and consequently we occasionally treat ourselves to Gluten free fish & chips at the Magpie restaurant and this, Dom assumed was the ultimate plan for the evening. Therefore it was with a look of befuddlement that she followed me into a tiny tearoom for some Gluten-free Marble cake!


After more tea and cake we jumped back on board the train and, champagne in-hand set off once again, our eventual destination unknown but with Dominique now assuming that we must surely be returning to Pickering, probably for a Chinese at the restaurant opposite the station. Little did she know that was not exactly what I had in mind…

Now I’ll be honest, at this stage I was a little concerned that for a plan involving Dom and I things were, let’s face it, going rather too well. Normally our trips have one or two problems, for example getting near to starvation after every restaurant was booked up for both lunch and dinner on Dom’s birthday. The flat tyre we got on our mini-moon in the lake district. The power supply to my Mac breaking on our actual Honeymoon forcing us to race around Portugal searching for Apple stores so that I could finish off a piece of work, and of course the hurricane that hit our tropical island wedding. Surely this had all been a little too slick so far!

And so I was almost relieved as we got off at Levisham station to see there was no phone (or indeed google map) signal nor chance to hire a taxi and, in fact, no street lights or signposts to help us find our eventual destination. Thankfully there was one helpful signalman who pointed us in the right general direction and so off we set on foot for what I knew to be a mile or so’s walk. In the dark. Really really dark. Across the Moors, did I mention the moors? After a great start things had all gone a little Wuthering Heights on us…

I should defend myself here by saying that whilst I knew the distance involved after having our destination recommended to me by my generally lovely in-laws who don’t usually try to kill the pair of us off, I was rather unaware of the lack of street lights or signposts or, indeed the scary scary moorland surrounded only by the glistening eyes of what we could only hope were sheep by the dim light of our phones. After walking up hill for what seemed like an eternity we eventually turned the corner and sadly saw no sign of life in the distance. Fortunately, shortly after coming to the conclusion that this would in fact be our last wedding anniversary having condemned us both to certain death, a car came past and slowed to greet us.

Our luck being what it is the car was, of course, completely full. However the passengers were able to confirm that we were heading in the right direction (and that Heathcliffe was not, to their knowledge, rampaging across the Moors accompanied by a savage werewolf) and so we continued on our path.1426512_10154826248205093_507309626907544718_n

With Dom looking slightly concerned not only about her impending death but also by the fact we were looking likely to have to get a train back before we had even started our dinner I decided this was the moment to reassure her that we would not only be eating once we reached our location but would in fact be staying the night, and spurred on by this added purpose, we strode boldly towards Levisham.

To our surprise we eventually made it and were able to clean up and have a glass of wine in our room before going down for what turned out to be a stupendous (and rewardingly enormous) meal before retiring to a comfortable bed for the night.

The walk back to the station in the morning was surprisingly beautiful by daylight despite the angry looking (and very sharply horned) Highland Cattle we had presumably passed the night before blocking the road at regular intervals. As it turned out though mere enormous cows were the least of our worries as we returned to the platform station to find signs warning us of the enormous number of poisonous Adders in the surrounding moorland. Snakes. Why’d it have to be snakes?!

Anyway, to conclude the story, after bravely standing on the bench hiding from snakes whilst awaiting the train we returned to Pickering for some Gluten-free fish & chips at one of the town’s finest before returning home to share our tale of near-death adventure. Needless to say, Small Dog was not impressed that, firstly we had gone for a trip across the moors without him, and secondly that I had lived to tell the tale. Still, all good adventures need an evil nemesis and Small Dog was more than up for the role.

So happy anniversary to my gorgeous wife, I’m looking forward to many more adventures in the years to come.


Share Button
back to topcontact bride vs groomtweet this postshare on facebookemail post to friend

Colehayes-Park-Wedding-Photography_0086Today’s Story Frame captures a perfectly delivered reading from Hollie & Kieran’s amazing Colehayes Park wedding ceremony, much to the bride and groom’s delight! The reading itself was a fitting one, delivered to the travel-loving couple as it was surrounded by bunting made of maps! It was such a perfect moment and I just love Hollie’s reaction in the background!
Share Button
back to topcontact bride vs groomtweet this postshare on facebookemail post to friend


Share Button
back to topcontact bride vs groomtweet this postshare on facebookemail post to friend

Earlier this week we revisited a post all about the things to look out for when trying to transform a less-than-ready-made space into a suitable venue to host a wedding, and today we’d like to take a look at the bigger question: is it a good idea to try to transform a space for your wedding or is it best to go for a ready-made wedding space?

Time to put it to the debate!


In the Red Corner, arguing for a wedding-ready-venue as the best choice for your day, she’s worked in every kind of venue from custom creations to the most well-trodden wedding venues, it’s Dom “The Tog Bride”

In the Blue Corner, making the case for transforming any space into your perfect wedding venue, with a background in technical events services and transforming venues including his own wedding venue to his name, it’s Matt “The Gormless Groom”

Wedding-Ready Venue Vs Transform a Space


Dom: Transforming a space into a wedding venue that isn’t supposed to be can be incredibly difficult (and expensive) to do. It may start out cheaper to hire a village hall or empty space than a ready-made venue but by the time you have bought or hired all of the decorations you need to transform it along with potentially hiring a team of professionals to assist you it may end up far pricier than just using a venue that’s already fully equipped.

Matt: Transforming a venue doesn’t have to be expensive, even simple use of a little fabric and string or a change in the way the venue is lit can go a long way toward completely changing the appearance of a space and, depending on how elaborate your plans are, it is possible to make it considerably cheaper than hiring a specialist wedding venue.

Dom: The time and effort involved in transforming a venue can be huge, particularly if you’ve never attempted anything similar before. You may need to enlist a team of helpers and hire the space for additional days before and after the wedding to prepare the space and that time commitment both from your side and that of the venue is often simply impossible.

Matt: But the process of transforming your venue with the help of your family and friends is part of the whole fun of the occasion and makes it even more your own. Having access to the venue before and after the wedding means that you effectively get to extend your day with additional events.

Dom: There are so many more things that can go wrong using a space that isn’t normally a wedding venue and that can add a lot more stress to the day.

Matt: Transforming a venue allows you to truly give it your own spin, to inject your own style and personality into your space and have it exactly the way you want it to be.

Dom: Venues that normally cater for weddings have experienced staff who know exactly how everything should work and how to deal with any problems to ensure your day runs smoothly.

Matt: But venues sometimes have quite a set or restrictive way of doing things and you may be forced to abide by their rules, follow their schedules, even use their own suppliers, taking a lot of the control of your day out of your hands.

Dom: If you have taken control of every detail of your day including organising everything from the decoration to the catering then if there are any problems then you are the contact and the person responsible for everyone, whereas if the venue is taking care of things then you can just relax and enjoy your day.

Matt: Creating your own custom venue is so much more memorable, so much more unique and will create even more memories that you will truly never forget. You’ll never be invited back to the same venue for someone else’s wedding where everything looks the same, it will always be your place.


So those are our thoughts but where do you stand? Transform a space or use a wedding-ready space, place your vote in our poll or leave a comment to join the debate!

Wedding-Ready Venue Vs Transform a Space
Share Button
back to topcontact bride vs groomtweet this postshare on facebookemail post to friend

Bhavna Profile PicWhat’s a wedding without a good partaaayyy! After all the planning for months and months, it’s your chance to let your hair down and soak it all in, you’ve done it, you’re married and you’re there dancing with the person you love. What better way to celebrate than a big fat party.

A good party isn’t just going to happen, you’ve got to make it happen.  But first you must make plans for the reception to take place, for your guests to be seated, fed and then entertained.

So first things first; you’ll want to have a seating plan, get your guests organized and comfortable so that they can enjoy the evening with you.

Bhavna Barratt Sikh Wedding Photography_0181

Then decide on your décor, think about your theme if you have one, maybe include centerpieces and wedding favours too. For wedding favours think of something personal to your guests, always works a treat, if you’re having 10+ guests then think of something that you can source in bulk.

You might want to consider if you’re having a receiving line, this can be time consuming but it also provides the chance to greet all the guests, If you do have one, this is the order: Bride’s mother or parents, groom’s mother or parents, bride, groom, maid of honor, then bridesmaids.

One of the most important things is to figure out if you’re being announced in, when you make your entrance. This works a treat, and its one of the first times you’ll be called Mr & Mrs or Mr & Mr or Mrs & Mrs … eek how exciting.


If you’re having a cake cutting, then plan for it to happen either soon after you walk in or just before the desserts are out, this way the cake can become part of your desserts menu.

Speeches or toast…keep the number to a minimum and allocate a time for each speech, you don’t want a speech to take up half an hour, no one will be listening anymore. 15 minute slots are good, and try and mix it up, don’t have all the speeches one after another, variety is the key.

Food: decide if you’re having a sit down meal or a buffet, either way make sure that you plan the menu and have taster sessions with the caterers beforehand, you may also want to decide at this point if you are having an open bar or not, depending on your budget of-course.

Once everyone’s been fed that’s when the real party starts. If you want group photos taken, make sure they are all done before the party kicks off, you don’t want sweaty armpits in group photos.  Nah. Keep your group photos to a minimum, these can take up a lot of time otherwise, and you want to make sure you have time to dance the night away.


So the best part, the first dance, have you chosen the song you want to dance to? Are you having other entertainment like a bhangra group or maybe your cousins or even the best man, have prepared a special dance?

Make a playlist of songs that both you and your partner enjoy dancing to and give that to the DJ in advance, let the DJ know what kind of music you like and just kick those shoes off, boogie away whilst you’re surrounded by the people you love, show those Ibiza clubbers they have nothing on you.  Have those dance-offs, crowd surf, let the dhol player sound the dhol to your favourite songs.

The bottom line is this is your day, you’ve worked hard on planning it. Now is the time to bask in the glory of the success of your sleepless nights spent on pinterest.


Bhavna Barratt Sikh Wedding Photography_0182

Indian Wedding Photography by Bhavna Barratt

Profile picture by Tux & Tales Photography

Share Button
back to topcontact bride vs groomtweet this postshare on facebookemail post to friend