Honeymoon Vacation

1 ‘If you’re having a marquee wedding, don’t underestimate the numberof toilets you’ll need. Alwaysoversupply, using the ratioof one loo per 20 guests, andadd some branded hand soapand hand cream (such as Aromatherapy Associateshunt out bargains in TK Maxx.

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2 Almost all weddings gobudget. Put 20% of funds inreserve for emergencies.

3 If you’re getting marriedabroad, don’t check your dressor any vital items into theplane’s luggage hold. Takehand luggage or buy it a ticket– we’ve fown a Peggy Porschencake in its own seat beforeSophie McCorry Day,‘Buy your stamps after you’ve weighed the sealed invitation at the post office. Size, weight and width all contribute to postage costs, and you don’t want guests to have to pay the difference.’‘If you’re planning any outdoor elements, have a wet weather contingency plan. Wedding planners always have a plan B… and even a plan C! Umbrellas bought in advance can be cost-efective (check the returns policy, so you can send them back if you don’t use them) and can be a saviour on the day.’Matt Peat,‘It’s surprising how many things need to be taken to your ceremonyand reception venues.

A month before, get two large boxes with lids and add everything that needsto go to each, such as the Order of Service or your guest favours. Makea list of any bigger items that don’t fit into the box, and tape it to the lidso you don’t forget them. Add a penand Post-its, and think about where to store all your “kit” during the day – tie on a luggage label if thebags need to go on to hotel rooms.’‘Double-sided tape and Super Glue come in handy at every wedding, whether it’s being used to tape a bridesmaid’s dress in place or re-attach an usher’s sole to his shoe (believe me, I’ve done it). Put them in your emergency kit. Also, back up your playlist on more than one iPod.’Bruce Russell‘When getting quotes for music, don’t forget about band set-ups and sound checks.

If you don’t want to see equipment being installed, you may need to ask the band to set up before your ceremony, which can increase costs.’Kelly Chandler, ‘For drinks, budget a minimum of half a bottle of wine and half a bottle of champagne per head. Do research, as some suppliers will take back any unopened cases or even bottles, so you can over-purchase to be on the safe side. Tink beyond the usual elderfower or orange juice for your non-alcoholic drinks watermelon juice, strawberry purée and fresh lemonade are delicious and a bit diferent.’Julia Dowling, ‘It’s all about timing. Don’t leave too little time to get ready (you’ll need at least three hours), too long for the drinks before dinner (an hour and a half is plenty – serve canapés to soak up the bubbly), or not enough time for dancing (four hours is a party). End on a high – I think a 1am finish is perfect if your venue allows it.

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