By Hayley Devlin, The Brisbane Bridal Coach
Now you're engaged you've probably started imagining what your wedding will look like. Ok... perhaps you've been secretly thinking about it for years, but now there's a legitimate reason for all that daydreaming about white dresses!
If you've ever picked up a bridal magazine or searched online for anything 'wedding', you'll know just how much choice there is. It's endless! With so many options, you'll want to try and narrow it down to find a style that works for your day. Family, friends and much of the information out there will tell you that you need a theme... actually you DON'T.
Read on to find out why a theme is optional but a Wedding Concept is, in my opinion, essential.
Wedding theme, wedding concept... what's the difference?
The word 'theme' may conjure up images of crazy costumes and flamboyant fancy dress parties but in the world of weddings, it simply relates to a style choice based on certain unifying elements. A wedding theme could be centred around a favourite location (think beach, garden, rustic etc) a colour palette or influenced by a particular trend, time or season you like, amongst other things.
A Wedding Concept is a framework for the overall look and feel of your day, based on a unique idea and shaped by your preferences and personalities. It fuses who you are with what you love, and helps you to conceptualise your perfect day.
The difference between the two may seem subtle but it's extremely important. Whilst a theme is determined by external influences, forcing all of your ideas to fit into a pre-defined box, a Wedding Concept comes from within and uses the fundamentals of what's important as the foundation to build on. You might want to read that again... just so you're clear. Understanding the difference will go a long way to shaping the core foundation of your wedding planning.
What's wrong with having a theme?
Now, I'm not saying you shouldn't have a theme. Not at all. Having a consistent theme can bring a sense of cohesion to your day, helping you to identify details that work together to achieve your desired look. This can be a good thing; after all who wouldn't want their wedding to look cohesive? The problem with using a popular style to define your wedding is this; many other couples may also be using the same theme for theirs.
As an example, search Google or Pinterest for 'Rustic Vintage weddings' and you'll uncover a plethora of amazing images to inspire you; millions of them! While this can be a great starting point for your ideas, it should not be a definitive guide for how your wedding will look. If you don't want your guests thinking "oh look, mason jars... AGAIN" it might be time to get a bit more creative. Inject a bit of you into your wedding!
What makes a great wedding?
The difference between a good wedding and a truly great wedding is not the styling, the catering or the amount of money it costs. The difference is emotion and a sense of connection. Think about the greatest weddings you've ever been to, how did they make you feel? Pretty freakin' awesome, I imagine. The best weddings are those you can relate to because they capture the essence of the bride and groom. These events feel genuine, authentic, fun and full of personality.
If you want your wedding to be remembered, quite simply, you need to make the day memorable! This is achieved by focusing on the little details just as much as the big stuff. Having a unique and meaningful Wedding Concept can help you to create that narrative, effortlessly bringing all the elements together. What is important to you, what makes your relationship unique and how can you tell that story through your wedding?
Why do I need a Wedding Concept?
A Wedding Concept helps you to get clear, from the beginning, what you want for your day. It provides you with a vision and a blueprint to make planning your wedding easier, helping you decide which elements you will need and which suppliers will be a good fit.
A well thought out concept acts an umbrella for all your ideas to sit under and helps you avoid all the beautiful distractions that await as you progress through your Wedding Planning Journey. Take some time at the beginning of your journey to create a solid concept and you'll be less likely to change your mind further down the line. This will stop you from wasting your time and money. It will also be far less stressful for you and your suppliers if you can provide a detailed brief or roadmap of where you are going.
Think of it like this; if your wedding was a jigsaw puzzle, your Wedding Concept would be the picture on the front of the box. If you begin with this, it makes putting all the little pieces together so much simpler.
Chloe & Samuel started their wedding planning by identifying the things they love most in the world. They met whilst traveling and both adore the beach, hence their concept 'Cities & Sand' was born. They featured sand from their favourite beaches and incorporated the cities that were significant to them. Even the colour has a special meaning as they met in a place called The Sky Bar. By allowing their unique memories to dictate the style of the wedding instead of being influenced by a generic 'beach theme', they will look back on their photos in years to come and remember the story behind each little detail. Their concept will stand the test of time.
How do we create a Wedding Concept?
This process starts with finding your inspiration. With so many wonderful websites, blogs, magazines and social media pages dedicated to all things 'wedding'... finding what inspires you has never been easier. In fact, this in itself can be overwhelming. Bombarded by all that bridal beauty, how do you choose which details to include in your concept? How do you make someone elses ideas work for you?
This is where the fun starts, it's time to take that inspiration and make it your own! You do this by identifying your unique characteristics and why your relationship is so special. Try to include the things you both love, the things that move you, the core memories you have made together and your wedding will be heartfelt, memorable and an accurate representation of you both. It will tell your story.
Passion for dancing? Share it and shake it with your guests! If you both love to tear it up on the dance floor, include that in your Wedding Concept. Think how much fun you'll have.
In my next blog I'll be exploring the question of how to create an awesome Wedding Concept further. In the meantime, you can see an example of a concept and read more about how Wedding Concept Creation can help you.
What do you think? Do you have a great idea for a Wedding Concept? Please leave me a comment below.
Your Wedding Concept does not have to make sense to anyone except you. In fact, the more abstract, the better! Your relationship can't be pigeonholed so why should your wedding have to fit into a standard category? It's your day, do it your way!