Updated: May 10, 2021
We’ve all been there. You’re lucky enough to be invited to a wedding! Hooray! You buy a new outfit, make travel arrangements, and when the day arrives you hot-foot-it to the hotel for a speedy check-in, possibly grabbing a cardboard-sandwich from the service station on the way there. Then follows a collection of awkward moments where you arrive at the church/venue, faced with an unusual combination of people that is tricky for even the most socially adept of us to handle in one go; all kinds of friends and family and their better halves, and then, (always the worst part), what feels like hundreds of ridiculously well-dressed strangers glancing at you sideways to try to figure out what makes you worthy of a place at this most special of special occasions. It’s not a million miles away from that dream where you accidentally went to work naked.
After the ceremony there’s more awkward standing around while your brain tries to navigate who to talk to first, and how to move past all the obvious small-talk: “So….how do you know the bride and groom?” Guests loosen up after a glass of bubbly, and during the meal you chat politely to the person sitting next to you who is not your plus-one. If you’re lucky, you might even get a moment to tell the bride or groom how lovely it all is before they squeeze your arm and look apologetically at you for having to dash off to check on their Aunty Jean. I could go on, but you get the picture. It’s nice. It’s a tried and tested formula that works pretty well…but I’m going to let you in on a secret that other brides and grooms have discovered. There is ANOTHER WAY. Enter, the Weekend Wedding.
Weekend weddings are already hugely popular in the US, as well as with UK couples who go abroad to get married, (see my Destination Weddings page for more info if that’s your thing!). But now couples are realising that UK weddings too can be taken to the next level and become altogether more enjoyable experiences when spread over a weekend. In fact, the UK boasts some of the most wonderful venues and hotels for weekend weddings – just ask me and I’ll find the perfect place!
(Please note, the sky really is the limit, and your ideal weekend might be completely different to another couple’s. My team and I work to make your Wedding Weekend completely customised to you.)
Location: Inverlochy Castle, Fort William, Scotland
15:00hrs - Guests arrive in time for Afternoon Tea to replenish from their travels and start to relax.
16.30hrs – Guests take part in one or more activities to give them a chance to get to know each other and have some fun! This could be anything from lawn games (croquet, skittles), to clay pigeon shooting or a whisky tasting workshop where guests can make their very own whisky blend!
19:00hrs – Welcome/Rehearsal Dinner (usually informal and a lovely, relaxed way for people to get to know each other more before the Big Day).
11:00hrs – Farewell Brunch or BBQ Lunch. A lovely opportunity for guests to exchange stories from the day before, perhaps accompanied with some light entertainment and/or some more activities such as a mini ‘Highland Games’ competition.
Guests depart…leaving you with all the wonderful memories!
In a future post I’ll go into more detail of the benefits of Weekend Weddings, but here’s a summary:
Benefits of a Weekend Wedding:
You – the happy couple – get to spend more quality time with all your guests.
Guests who have further to travel, have more opportunity to relax and acclimatise so that they can truly enjoy your wedding day without feeling rushed or tired from travelling.
Your guests will get the opportunity to get to know each other before the big day, getting all that awkwardness out of the way so that on the wedding day itself, they are more relaxed and ready to party!
The day after the wedding can be a wonderful time to hear and share stories, photos and anecdotes from your wedding day, before everyone disappears back home.
More time to spend celebrating together = more fun + more memories to treasure forever.
So what are you waiting for my future weekend weddingers? If there was ever a time to ‘go big or go home’ this is it! Please get in touch for an informal chat and no-obligation quote.
Con cariño (with love!) Emma X