Our definitive guide to moving your wedding due to COVID-19
Well it’s been a funny few months, hasn’t it folks?
Anyone planning a wedding in the coming months has almost certainly experienced a bit of a roller coaster of emotions recently. And whilst you may have even had moments of feeling a tiny bit guilty for stressing so much given the enormity of the situation, you’re more than entitled to worry about what happens next.
Afterall, you’ve spent so much time planning everything – the idea of postponing your wedding day due to COVID-19 can feel a little bit terrifying. We here at Tailored Entertainment know this only too well. Like all your suppliers, we’ve dealt with hundreds of couples in the last few weeks; many trying to postpone their wedding entertainment to hastily arranged new dates both this year and next.
The good news is, the wedding industry is ready to adapt. A recent survey led by Guides For Brides revealed the most important elements for engaged couples due to be married this year. The wedding and events industry continues to make the necessary adjustments to support the events booked for this year, so we are all ready for when we get the go ahead again. With the vaccine rollout pressing ahead, clients and suppliers are feeling more confident in the bookings they have in the diary by the day. Just today, Prime Minister Boris Johnson intimated that the removal of the current restrictions would be ‘cautious but irreversible’ giving many people in the industry confidence that this tranche of restrictions will be the last.
But what’s the best course of action? Postpone your wedding to a date later in the year? Move forward a full calendar year? And what about your suppliers? Many of our clients have opted to move their big day from a summer date to one later in the year, or even early next year. This, of course, presents lots of different questions, conerns and even opportunites. So, we thought we’d help pick it all apart and put a little advice in your direction. Cause we’re nice like that.
Advice on postponing your wedding due to COVID-19
Expert wedding advice from Kat Williams, Rock n’ Roll Bride Founder
First off, we thought we’d speak to someone who knows the UK wedding scene inside out. And we couldn’t think of anyone better than Kat Williams, founder of the brilliant Rock n’ Roll Bride – one of the country’s best and most influential wedding publications. We spoke to Kat earlier this week. Here’s what she had to say.
[Kat Williams - founder of Rock n' Roll Bride]
Postponing & Rescheduling
A lot of people are finding themselves forced into postponing and rescheduling their weddings due to coronavirus right now. There’s so much to consider, but where should they start?
‘The first thing to do would be to reach out to your wedding suppliers and ask what their contingency for this is. Are they able to simply move your date for you? Will there be any additional fees? What is there availability for the autumn or next year?’
‘You then need to decide when you're going to postpone the day to and reach out to your guests and let them know. I have seen some great free downloads of "change the date" invitations that you can send the people if you want to make something cute.’
There’s every chance certain suppliers won’t be available for the potential new dates people are looking to lock down…what’s the key to getting that right? Is there a balance to be struck?
‘The fact of the matter is there are limited dates that people will be available, so it may be that your original choice of supplier is not going to be available. I think you need to consider if that supplier is the important thing to have so you could change your date around them (would you consider a weekday wedding?) or if you would rather keep your new day and find a new supplier. I would personally decide on a case-by-case basis.’
‘For example, if I particularly really wanted a certain supplier I would set my new day around their availability and then just hope everyone else can slide into it - or if not find somebody else to do it.’
Choosing between a winter and a summer wedding
We’re seeing lots of our clients looking to the autumn/winter for a rescheduled date. What’s the upsides and downsides of jumping from summer to winter?
‘I mean the obvious answer to this is that if you are planning to have an outdoor summer festival wedding that's probably not going to work in the autumn or winter. If you are particularly keen on having a seasonal wedding, then you might want to postpone a whole year rather than just waiting until the autumn.'
'Just ask yourself what the most important thing to you is. Let that be your guiding light. If you've always dreamt of having a summer festival wedding than the obvious answer is to move to next year. But if you just want to get married as quickly as possible and the aesthetics aren’t as crucial then that's made the decision for you!’
How to stay positive wedding planning in a pandemic
For many couples, one of the biggest days of their lives has suddenly been associated with a lot of stressful baggage in the last few weeks – can you offer any advice on how to refocus, and get the excitement and good vibes back again?
‘Just be kind to yourself. This is a very stressful situation for a lot of us and you don't have to have it all figured out right away. Don't feel rushed or forced into making any decisions either. It can naturally feel very panic inducing as dates are going to get snapped up, but what will be will be. At the end of the day, the most important thing is that you are happy and healthy, and everyone will be there to celebrate with you when it finally happens.’
Thanks so much to Kat for speaking to us – there’s some really great advice in there! You can follow Rock n Roll Bride on their Instagram for loads more brilliant advice, updates and amazing wedding inspiration!
Moving your wedding from summer to winter due to COVID-19
Okay. So what if you’ve got your heart set on getting married this year, and you’re forced to move from a summer wedding to a wintrier theme?
Changing your plans in such a drastic manner is always going to be a bit of a shellshock. But here’s the good news. Winter weddings, when done right, can be AWESOME. Over the last few years we’ve seen a huge increase in couples opting to have their wedding days on dates previously considered ‘off-season’, and the potential benefits to this are many. For more on that, check out our blog laying out our top tips for a magical winter wedding.
But for those of you still feeling a little unsure on how to embrace a big winter wedding day – allow us to allay your fears with a few handy hints on how to get it right and, crucially, enjoy every second of your wedding day – even if it’s not at the time of year you originally had in mind.
Weather-Proof Your Wedding
We know this sounds like a totally obvious point to make, but you’d be surprised how easy it is for people to get this crucial piece of the puzzle wrong when putting together a winter wedding. It’s even more important when you’re re-arranging your wedding day from summer to winter.
We find it’s best to plan for a wet day across the board – that way you’re prepared for any eventuality and anything else is an absolute bonus. That means not only ensuring your venue is totally set up for indoor celebrations, but also that there’s plenty of ‘breakout space’ to allow for rooms to be turned around and for guests to step out of the noise of the wedding reception if they fancy a breather.
What’s more, maybe think about umbrellas to get your guests from one building to another – and keep an eye on the locations of things like car parks and bathroom facilities (those farmer’s field carparks and luxury portacabin loos look great in August, but in November they can mean guest’s cars stuck in the mud and lost high-heels on the way to the bathroom!).
The reality is that if you plan for bad weather, you’ll probably end up not needing a lot of these provisions. You’re just as likely to end up with glorious weather than not. I mean, let’s be honest, can you really guarantee great weather here in the UK on any day of the year? Better safe than sorry!
Winter themed weddings
It goes without saying that when postponing your wedding from summer to winter, there’s going to be a bit of a tonal mismatch between the plans you had and the date you’re now planning for. As Kat from Rock n’ Roll bride mentioned above, for some people this is going to be too much and if that’s the case for you, you should absolutely look at postponing your wedding to next summer.
But if you can embrace the change, a winter wedding offers up so many possibilities that summer weddings never could. The rustic, muted tones of winter weddings make for sumptuous palates – dark greens and deep burgundies can bring a serious touch of sophistication to your wedding’s aesthetic that you would struggle to match with summer colours. Grooms can ditch the summer suits for something classic like a black-tie tuxedo…the possibilities are endless.
Your flowers can come to life with gorgeous winter arrangements…or you can even keep your summer colours and give them an autumnal feel by adding a dark ribbon in the same colour family as your flowers.
As for food and drink – the sky really is the limit. The very best wedding caterers will all work with seasonal ingredients anyway, so they’ll be able to offer great guidance on transferring your menu to something more seasonally appropriate…it’s a great opportunity get really creative with your wedding menu!
All your suppliers will be relishing the opportunity to really get to grips with your change in theme…not least your wedding entertainment.
There are loads of fun, seasonal wedding bands on our roster that would work well with a winter wedding theme…how about a glitzy vintage swing wedding band like Gatsby’s Jukebox? They take modern chart hits and give them a sultry, smoky 1920’s energy. Or you could maybe go with a soul and Motown wedding band like the amazing Soul Unit? These guys are great for wedding, as absolutely everyone seems loves a soul showband, and their aesthetic can perfectly match a winter wedding.
Winter lighting - a wedding photographer's dream
One of the biggest obstacles for many couples postponing their wedding from summer to winter is the impact on photos. If you’d dreamed of those gorgeous summer statement shots hanging on your wall for years to come, you can be forgiven for feeling a little disappointed.
But here’s the thing. Winter weddings present a golden opportunity for you and your photographer. Winter lighting can make for simply stunning wedding photography…with the weaker sun lying closer to the horizon, there is the potential to secure some shots that simply would not be possible in the summer. Even overcast weather can bring about some beautifully affecting imagery.
The one obvious drawback for your wedding photography is obviously that the window of opportunity is smaller than during the summer. But with some clever planning and plenty of back up scenarios taken into account (don’t forget to plan for a potential indoor photo location!) you’re sure to get the best out of it.
Finally - be kind to yourself
We’re going to finish by reiterating another great point from our interview with Kat at Rock n’ Roll Bride. Be sure to cut yourself some slack. The last few weeks have almost certainly been no end of stressful for you - in many aspects of your life. Postponing your wedding was never going to be ideal, or easy. You’re allowed to be mad. You’re allowed to be hurt and upset. But ultimately, the crucial thing is that you end up married to the person you love. Give yourself plenty of time to ask yourself what you really want to do, and don’t feel forced into making any decisions because of time pressures or the actions of other people.
What will be will be. And after the last corks have been popped and the final pieces of confetti have been swept away, what will remain is the memory of celebrating your love in front of the people that mean the most to you in the world. And nothing can ever diminish that.
You can always chat to one of our expert team for more advice on postponing your wedding day due to COVID-19. We’d love to hear from you.
From our families to yours, we wish you health and happiness.
See you at a wedding very soon!