Thank you to our real bride and guest blogger Danielle for sharing this piece with with us.
You can see the rest of her blog here.
Have a read at what Danielle thinks about choosing a wedding venue…
Without a venue you can’t really shape your special day – this is a no brainer in my eyes. Choosing a venue will also give you your all important wedding date (OMG!) and will really kick start all of your wedding plans!
How to find potential venues?
I would recommend looking at a lot of venues online initially. I personally think it’s a great idea as a couple to establish early on in your planning what you both want from your venue.
For us, we wanted 3 things out of the venue.
Somewhere which was:
2) Visually stunning
3) Not somewhere where the venue would take over the focus of the wedding, if that makes sense… For instance, nothing too castle like – as that’s really not us.
It also had to have accommodation on site for our guests, as well as the capability for our evening guests to get there by taxi.
Finally – it had to be suited to ALL elements of weather. Being in England, we cant ever guarantee the sun for reception drinks – so we needed to cover all bases.
Realistic venue shopping
Another thing I would suggest is working out your budget before you start looking.
You can get a lot of prices online now by downloading the brochures before you visit venues. Otherwise, you really do just waste a lot of your weekends wandering around the whole venue, before they sit you down to say its way over your budget or ‘we actually don’t have any Saturdays available for the next 4 years’ – wonderful!
We knew how much money we had to work with and what was realistic for us, which made our decision quite clear cut – a straightforward yes or no.
Game changing info on venues
When we found out some venues offer an ‘all-inclusive package’ including: venue hire, canapes, a 4-course wedding breakfast and drinks – we were instantly drawn to the venues who offered this. Not only does this cut down your to-do list finding caterers, it saves you some pennies and makes the decision process a lot easier.
The best part for us was spending an evening together prior to the wedding tasting the potential food and drink on the menu and choosing what to have at our wedding.
It’s always nice to make time for you and your partner before you get married.
We may have had a list of No’s too…
Another tip, is to hunt down some venues you like which host wedding fayres – as this really kills two birds with one stone.
This is also how immediately we ended up with a list of things we didn’t want from a venue. And our top 3 were…
- Hideous Carpets – I personally became massively fixated on carpets! I don’t know why, but a lot of venues in Lancashire and Cheshire areas have the most hideous red patterned carpets – which really wouldn’t go with any wedding décor I’d seen on pinterest and isn’t something which can be removed on the day. That in itself narrowed it down to around 6 venues.
2. Dull Lighting – I found a lot of venues seemed very oddly dark inside? I still can’t decide if they were going for mood lighting, or they just don’t want a big electricity bill?! Either way – they just needed to turn the lights on, it’s a wedding not a funeral! The fact that I knew I wanted very light colours with whites, silvers and pale greys for our theme, made me drawn to the bright open spaces in venues.
3. Separate Bar – Whatever the occasion, birthday, engagement or wedding people will automatically congregate around the bar – it’s just what happens and something which most people are aware of. This being the case I was baffled at how many wedding venues had their bar in a separate room to the evening reception dance floor. Why would you want to stop the party by separating everyone?
All things said…
When you walk into the right venue for you and your partner, you’ll get that feeling.
The feeling that you couldn’t imagine spending your wedding day anywhere else and you just know – you’ve found the one!