Whether you're working with a wedding stylist/planner, or organising your day independently, it's great to have a clear vision on how you want your day to look and feel. Not only does this help your vendors understand what you're trying to achieve; it helps them suggest appropriate options you might have not previously come across or considered.
As a stationer, I'm one of the first vendors that couples contact when planning their wedding and a key part of my job is understanding what a couple is envisioning for their day. With a plethora of wedding visuals floating around the internet; my couples are often overwhelmed with choice. Over the years, I've helped couples narrow their ideas using the below tools and methods.
PINTEREST & MOODBOARDS
If you haven't yet discovered Pinterest, sign yourself up for a free account. Pinterest is a glorious place to start finding inspiration for your day. However, I've discovered key practices that help glean valuable information for your day from Pinterest; rather than ensuring you suffer overwhelm.
Do: Rather than create a general 'Wedding Inspiration' board, create sub folders for 'Signage', 'Stationery', 'Flowers', 'Colour Palette', 'Dress' etc. You can always lock the boards if you don't want anyone else to see what you're planning.
Do: Before approaching vendors, revisit your boards and assess what you're continuously drawn to and delete pins that no longer fit the vision. Be particularly conscious of the venue you have chosen when going through each board. You may love a beach wedding you keep seeing; but if you're getting married in the city, that inspiration is unlikely to be cohesive with or helpful for your day.
Do: If you'll be sharing your boards with vendors, ensure you edit comments with what you love and dislike about a pin. Or create a board using the image with notes about what you love like the below. There is nothing worse than your vendors assuming you love wooden signage in your day when you were actually pinning those items because you liked the style of lettering.
Do: Be a proactive pinner; Pinterest will feed you ideas based on what it thinks you like, so start your journey by pinning ideas / looks you love from quality wedding websites and stylists. Some of our favourites are The Lane, Hilde Stories, Hygge Studio, and The Romance.
Do: Once a cohesive idea is starting to form, save a maximum of 2 images from each board onto one single Pinterest board / mood board and see how your ideas work together. Fine-tune until you feel a cohesive idea is emerging. Save a screenshot of this and stop browsing and pinning unless you have a particular styling problem you're seeking to solve. There are always going to be new ideas popping up; don't add to the confusion of planning your day.
It may help to also write down some key ideas that are prevalent on your board as it will make written communication of your ideas easier - ie. 'Modern', 'Monochrome with an infusion of blush pink' or 'Organic, pastel with rustic wooden elements'.
Do: Another great idea, is to update this overarching mood board with an image of your actual invitations & signage as they are created; and to remove the inspiration. That way you'll have an accurate visual record of what your day has evolved into.
CONSIDER YOUR VENUE
Some of my favourite stationery & wedding styling has been created with the venue in mind. You chose the venue for a reason and there will generally be clues in the styling/ architecture as to what aesthetic that will suit the space. For example, when we created Chloe & Declan's wedding stationery, the arched windows & velvet furniture of Moana Hall played a key part in informing the palette & textures of their day. Likewise, if your venue has industrial finishes or is at a modern winery consider searching "Industrial warehouse wedding" or "Modern Winery event' to get ideas suited to your backdrop. For our couple, Lisa & Hien, their wedding venue - 'Mitolo Wines' - with its clean, modern monochrome lines influenced our decision to introduce soft, fine lettering & opaque acrylic to make the day feel softer and less like a visit to an art gallery.
THE FINER DETAILS
Part of having a cohesive wedding is considering all the little details and the day looking seamless. When talking to your venue co-ordinator or wedding planner/stylist, get caught up in the detail. They will be familiar with the venue and what works best so lean in and ask them what has worked well at the venue with previous weddings. And don't be afraid to get detailed; In their opinion, is signage required at the end of the driveway to let guests' know where to park? What size Welcome Sign will work best against that wall? What are the dimensions? Will guests be standing on pebbles for the ceremony? Should there be a note on the stationery about stiletto heels? These little details, executed in a style that is seamless with your day, contribute to a unified vision for your wedding day. They also ensure that guests aren't concentrating on how small the sign looked on the wall, how difficult to hear the celebrant & your vows it was, or the hand-scribbled sign that says 'Bathroom this way' that was popped up on the wall at the last minute to ensure guests' knew where to go.
Also, get detailed with your vendors! If you're looking to book in a stationer for your wedding invitations; consider whether they will be able to execute the signage, menus, place cards, bar signage for the day. If you have to add bits and pieces from different suppliers, you risk having a mish-mash of items that may not work cohesively with one another.
WORK WITH ALIGNED SUPPLIERS
Working with Byron Bay Weddings over the years has allowed me to see how couples can benefit from working with a team that are already familiar with one another. In some cases, this not only ensures your wedding day looks cohesive but can also lead to savings.
BE OPEN WITH YOUR VENDORS
Your vendors have been working with couples and learning things on an ongoing basis. Being open about your budget, concerns, ideas and questions will help your vendor help you! We want to make your vision come to life; so if it's workable, we'll find a way to make it happen. I've had clients who really wanted my work for their stationery but haven't had the budget to execute it quite the way they envisioned. But by being open, we were able to make some concessions, adapt some of their ideas and create something that felt unique to them.
And just remember, if you're getting overwhelmed, you have your original mood boards to return to. Don't leave them at the starting line; they're going to be your guide throughout the planning to keep you on task, and on theme.