on my (Not Your Usual) Blog...

 
Blog (noun) a regularly updated website or web page, typically one run by an individual or small group, that is written in an informal or conversational style. 1990s abbreviation of weblog.

The typical celebrant blog is a diary about ceremonies conducted - with lots of personal information about the couple. I don't do that because of privacy issues, so you won't find real life weddings here. Rather, this blog is comprised of discussions about questions I have been asked, plus a random diary of my thoughts about various issues and challenges you may well be faced with as you plan your wedding,  So it is a mixed bag about anything and everything from choosing your venue and your celebrant, to what might seem like miniscule decisions where your decision can have a big impact on the overall outcome.

Tuesday Tutorials About Getting Married  (Bite-size tutorials about the legal aspects of getting married)

Realistic Wedding Readings

Categories: Wedding Ceremony |
(09/06/2019)
If you're a down to earth couple, with a realistic view of what marriage really entails, the vast majority of the poems and poetic prose read at weddings are just not for you. I've gathered together a selection of more down-to-earth readings...   Read on...


Showcasing Wedding Photographers

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning |
(05/06/2019)
One of the joys of being a celebrant is seeing other wedding professionals "on the job", and working with them as a team. Recently, I took the opportunity to sit down with two photographers I always love working with to delve into what lies behind the skills, what enables them to make the magic they do.   Read on...


Ageist Judgemental Celebrants Make Me VERY Cross

Categories: Celebrant | Inclusive Wedding | Wedding Ceremony |
(05/06/2019)
A rant about celebrant advertising that is judgemental of clients and ageist about other celebrants ...    Read on...


Getting married when you don’t identify with a gender

Categories:  Inclusive Wedding | Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Legals |
(23/05/2019)
Gender is now immaterial when getting married in Australia. When marrying you do not have to use gendered terminology or adhere to gendered role ...    Read on...


Children in your bridal party

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony |
(19/05/2019)
Including children in your bridal party can make for unexpectedly magic moments ...    Read on...


Getting the Author right for a Wedding Reading

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony |
(10/05/2019)
A popular poem claimed to be a translation of an original Persian poem by Sufi poet, Hafiz, is found not to be so. This is a problem because ...    Read on...


Wedding Reading - Epithalamium

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony |
(09/05/2019)
A beautiful poem read at the wedding of the first gay couple to legally marry in Scotland ...    Read on...


Surprise Weddings - How to have one without breaking the lawy

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Legals | Wedding Planning |
(03/05/2019)
The Marriage Act is very clear. Surprise weddings are illegal - but only if one of the marrying
couple is being surprised. Which means there are plenty of legal ways to have a surprise wedding ...    Read on...


Unity Candle Ceremony

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Rituals |
(27/04/2019)
The Unity Candle Ceremony - what it is and how to prepare for it ...    Read on...


Unity Sand Ceremony

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Rituals |
(25/04/2019)
The Unity Sand Ceremony - what it is and how to prepare for it ...    Read on...


How Many Bridesmaids is Just the Right Number?

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning | Wedding Traditions |
(13/04/2019)
There is a very fine line between an appropriate number of bridesmaids (and groomsmen) and just too many, and a wide range of factors that come into play when deciding how many is the right number for your wedding ...    Read on...


Writing your vows doesn't have to be hard     

Categories: Vows | Wedding Ceremony |
(07/03/2019)
Writing your own vows is a wonderful way to personalise your ceremony - and it is not difficult if you remember one simple thing ...    Read on...


Trash the Dress and other things to do with your wedding gown after the big day

Categories: Wedding Dresses |
(05/04/2019)
Your wedding day has been and gone. And now you have that lovely dress hanging in your closet. What to do with it? ....Read on...


Your Wedding Scentscape: 7 top tips to a planning a memory-making wedding

Categories: Wedding Planning |
(08/03/2019)
Science tells us that smells trigger more vivid emotional memories and are better at inducing that feeling of “being brought back in time” than images.  Science also tells us that fragrances can have a powerful calming effect. When planning your wedding, plan for the memories. One of the simplest ways to do that is to plan not only how your ceremony, and the celebration afterwards will look and feel, but also how it smells....  Read on...

Civil Ceremony, Secular Ceremony, Humanist Ceremony. What's the difference?

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony |
(02/03/2019)
All legal marriages in Australia are, in a sense, civil marriage, because they are registered and recognised by the state. Secular and Humanist marriage ceremonies differ in some profound ways...  Read on...
 

Waiting for a proposal? This post is for the ladies ...

Categories:  Wedding Traditions |
(28/02/2019)
Prime proposal season (Christmas-New Year) and second-most-popular-proposal-day (Valentine's Day) have been and gone. Are you still waiting for that expected proposal? The notion that the gold standard for proposals is the male proposing is not as long-standing a tradition as you might think. A growing number of women are successfully popping the question...  Read on...

Weddings are rife with bullying – and its got to stop

Categories:  Wedding Planning | Wedding Traditions |
(22/02/2019)
There are many forms of common wedding bullying and it is not all about the bride bullying the bridesmaids...  Read on...

Is it OK for a guest to wear white to a wedding?

Categories:  Wedding Traditions |
(16/02/2019)
The "never wear white to a wedding" rule is one of those hard and fast rules of etiquette that pretty well everyone has accepted for a very, very long time. In the 21st is this a rule that can be broken?  ...  Read on...

When are you actually legally married?

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Legals |
(08/02/2019)
There are many incorrect assumptions about when in the sequence of the ceremony, the signing, and the registration of their marriage a couple is actually legally married. ...  Read on...

On the Hidden Costs of Being "Fashionably" Late to Your Wedding

Categories: Wedding Traditions | Wedding Budget |
(31/01/2019)
Being fashionably late to your wedding, is not only not a must do tradition, it can cost you, big time, in more ways that just money ...  Read on...


Has Marriage Equality Changed Weddings? – My Predictions Revisited

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning | Inclusive Wedding |
(25/01/2019)
A year ago, I predicted that Marriage Equality would change all weddings in Australia, as more and more heterosexual couples, previously constrained by a wedding playbook that includes outmoded traditions and embedded roles defined by gender, experience the individual, meaningful, expressions of an equal relationship in the weddings of same-sex couples  - and that every wedding, gay or straight, would be the better for it.  So how accurate was I?   Read on...


Tossing the Garter – Yes or No??

Categories: Wedding Rituals | Wedding Traditions |
(08/01/2019)
Tossing the Garter is a wedding tradition that a growing number of couples are choosing to skip altogether for various reasons.  But skipping the embarrassing bit (the retrieval from the bride's leg) and changing up how it is tossed can add a lot of fun to the occasion while avoiding the things that can be an issue    Read on...

What if Someone Objects?

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Legals |
(05/01/2019)
We've all seen it in movie after movie - If anyone knows any reason why these two should not be joined in marriage, speak now .... So what happens if someone objects at your wedding?    Read on...

Witnesses and Weddings

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Legals |
(05/12/2018)
In Australia, no matter whether you marry in church, the registry office, or by a civil celebrant, and no matter whether you have the big white wedding with a large wedding party, or choose just to elope, the one thing that every wedding must have is two witnesses...    Read on...

Friend or Professional Celebrant?

Categories: Celebrant | Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Legals |
(02/12/2018)
Would choosing a friend instead of a professional celebrant to conduct your wedding ceremony be a good option for you?  Everything you need to consider - and how you can have the best of both worlds ...    Read on...

How to have a Gracious Wedding

Categories: Wedding Planning | Inclusive Wedding |
(22/11/2018)
Most couples today host their own weddings. Here are 35 ways to make sure that everyone feels welcome, appreciated, and both physically and emotionally comfortable.  ...    Read on...

Before you Meet Your Celebrant

Categories: Celebrant | Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning |
(19/11/2018)
There are two distinct aspects to getting married - planning the ceremony and meeting the legal requirements.  Without the ceremony, your wedding will just be an expensive party. And without meeting the legal requirements you will not be legally married! Here is a list of things to decide and things to do before you meet with me. If you can tick off all of these the process will go smoothly and efficiently.  ...    Read on...

Reduce Your Wedding Stress

Categories: Wedding Planning |
(16/11/2018)
8 easy ways to take control of your wedding and reduce your wedding stress  ...    Read on...

Privacy and You,  Your Wedding, Your Marriage

Categories: Wedding Legals |
(04/11/2018)
If you’ve ever wondered what my reasons are for rarely posting photos of the couple, or mentioning their names, even though I’ve officiated well over 800 legal marriages ...    Read on...

Wedding Budget Hidden Costs that Everyone Forgets

Categories: Wedding Budget
(28/10/2018)
Here are the four major sources of hidden costs that you need to be aware of, and budget for, when planning your wedding.    Read on...

You, Your Wedding, and Trans-Gender and Non-Binary Inclusivity

Categories: Wedding Planning | Inclusive Wedding |
(27/10/2018)
If you’re a Cis-gender couple planning your own wedding, issues of gender identity may not be front and centre in the process. However there are good reasons why they should be. Here are some tips on how to make sure your wedding is a comfortable and inclusive experience for everyone who attends, regardless of their gender identity.    Read on...

8 Simple Ways to Keep Within your Wedding Budget

Categories: Wedding Planning | Wedding Budget |
(23/10/2018)
One of the most difficult aspects of wedding planning is keeping within your wedding budget. Here are 8 simple things that will make that a breeze ...    Read on...


Wine Box or First Fight Box?   (20/09/2018)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Rituals |
Why an Anniversary Wine Box is a more appropriate ritual for a wedding than a First Fight Box    Read on...

Bride promising to obey until death? Not any more      (09/09/2018)

Categories: Vows | Wedding Ceremony |
A very common question from brides is "Do I have to promise to obey"    Read on...

Is your celebrant duly authorised?      (06/08/2018)

Categories: Celebrant | Wedding Legals |
While scams involving persons who are not authorised celebrants are extremely rare in Australia, now that a celebrant can be deregistered forthwith if he or she fails to pay the annual fee celebrants are now required to pay, it is particularly important to check whether your celebrant is still registered  Read on...

How to choose your celebrant like you’d choose a car… (updated 14/06/2018)

Categories: Celebrant |
Just as the car you choose not only has to fit your budget but also be fit for purpose, so does your celebrant. .... Read on...

'You may kiss your bride' - oh yeah?  How to have the Perfect (and Perfectly Modern) Kiss (updated 04/08/2018)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Traditions |
As a celebrant I not only see many many wedding kisses, I also have the responsibility of prompting them. Your first kiss as a married couple will be photographed and remembered by your guests (and everyone who sees the photographs) for years and years, so it is important to plan for the perfect kiss!
Read on....

The Importance of Wedding Invitations ... and other Wedding Stationery (16/02/2018)

Categories: Wedding Planning |
Of all the "must haves" attached to a wedding, the two that seem to be pushed to the bottom of the budget are the celebrant (without whom you'd just be having a very expensive party) and the invitations (without which none of the people you want to be there would know the important where and when facts).... Read on...

Rice, Birdseed, and Weddings (04/02/2018)

Categories: Wedding Traditions |
Rice, traditionally thrown at weddings,  is rarely seen nowadays because churches, reception venues, and local authorities usually ban the throwing of rice, along with confetti, but replacing it with birdseed is not a good idea... Read on...

How Marriage Equality Will Change Wedding Ceremonies (17/01/2018)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning | Inclusive Wedding |
This is my prediction – wedding ceremonies will change, but it won’t be a case of  the wedding industry merely accommodating same-sex couples. Rather same sex couples will influence, by example, all civil wedding ceremonies in Australia, and all weddings will be the better for it.  Read on...

Same Sex Ceremonies - Negotiating the Gendered Nature of Ceremony Traditions (09/01/2018)

Categories: Inclusive Weddings | Wedding Traditions |
Rather than assign roles, assign various customs .... Read on...

Multicultural Fusion Weddings (08/01/2018)

Categories: Inclusive Weddings | Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Rituals | Wedding Traditions | Wedding Planning |
If you are an intercultural couple, how do you navigate your ceremony?  It is not uncommon to have two ceremonies.  But there is a third option - a fusion wedding ceremony that incorporates the traditions of what are important to you both ... .... Read on...

8 Things I've Learned Over 11 Years of Being a Marriage Celebrant (04/01/2018)

Categories:  Wedding Planning |
Some of the things I've learned include it is never too early to book important vendors, the most common questions asked, the most common fear, and more .... Read on...

Behind the Scenes: What Goes on in Preparing your Ceremony (02/01/2018)

Categories: Celebrant | Wedding Budget |
It is not unusual for a celebrant to receive a request for a lowball fee on the grounds that "it is only an hour". However, what you and your guests see on the day is only a fraction of what I do to make your ceremony special and your marriage legal.  An incredible amount of work and preparation happens behind the scenes to make that hour possible. It is also not unusual for full realisation of how much behind the scenes preparation is involved to sink in only when a couple attends other weddings down the track and sees the result of some of that behind the scenes work being omitted ... Read on

Civil Celebrants and Clergy - what's the difference and does it matter? (01/12/2017)

Categories: Celebrant |
The Marriage Act, along with Dean Smith's Bill currently making it's way through the Parliamentary process, differentiates between Clergy and Civil Celebrants in what they can and can't do.  So, what is the difference between civil celebrants and clergy, and, if you are planning to marry, does it matter .... Read on...

Signing the Register and the Certificates (updated 16/12/2017)

Categories:  Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Legals |
Everything you need to know about signing the Marriage Register and Marriage Certificates .... Read on...

Your celebrant is NOT ripping you off (it is more than just half an hour) (10/07/2017)

Categories:  Celebrant | Wedding Budget | Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning |
There is an awful lot that goes into the half-hour the ceremony lasts - and that's what you are paying for .... Read on...

All About Silk (03/02/2017)

Categories: Wedding Dresses
Silk is the luxury fabric. Used both in wedding gowns on for grooms' ties. To learn about the many types of silk ....Read on...

All About Lace (30/01/2017)

Categories: Wedding Dresses
Lace and weddings go together like, well, wedding gowns and weddings. Regarded to be the traditional bridal fabric, it has been popular for luxury wedding gowns for centuries. To learn about the most popular types of lace used in wedding gowns ....Read on...

The Drones are Coming (24/01/2017)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning
This year I predict that drones will be the must-have at a wedding. But there are some things you need to take into account to ensure disaster doesn't strike.... Read on...

How to have an Environmentally Friendly and Socially Conscious Wedding (25/10/2016)

Categories: Wedding Budget | Wedding Planning |
Environmentally friendly celebrations do not have to lack style. As well as ensuring that you do not start your married life by unwittingly contributing to climate change or environmental damage, making socially conscious choices can save you money – and provide a defensible justification for not breaking the bank!  Here's how: ...Read on ...

Great Wedding Photos Start in the Mind (22/09/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning
Mindset and mind-power can make or break your wedding photos ...Read on ...

How much does a wedding cost? (18/09/2016)

Categories: Wedding Budget | Wedding Planning |
While other parts of the retail sector are seeing a downturn, even though the number of weddings in Australia per year is dropping, the wedding industry is flourishing - and that is costing couples big time. But it doesn't have to ... Read on ...

How to Train your Flower Girl for a Brilliant Petal Toss (14/09/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony |  Wedding Planning
There is nothing sweeter than a flower girl tossing petals with exuberant abandon. But achieving that takes a little training ... Read on ...

And the Flower Girl wore a Backpack ... (14/09/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony |  Wedding Planning
Give the children you want involved in your wedding ceremony the choice of what they will do and what they will wear and magic happens ...  Read on...

Everything you Learned about Wedding Ceremonies from Married at First Sight is WRONG ... (13/09/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony
Married at First Sight
is about the worst wedding manual on the planet ... and here's
why ...  Read on...

How to Remember and Honour Deceased Loved Ones in your Wedding Ceremony (09/09/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Rituals
Memorialising deceased loved ones is something many couples wish to include in their wedding. There are many ways to do this, and many things that need to be considered ... Read on...

How to avoid getting less than you paid for ... or more than you bargained for ... when booking your ceremony (04/09/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Budget | Wedding Legals | Wedding Planning |
Insider tips about what to look at when considering a ceremony package...   Read on...

How (Not) to Stagger Down the Aisle (in 3 easy steps) (31/08/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony
There is an art to walking down the aisle elegantly - and most of it relates to preparation ...   Read on...

The One Simple Thing Most Couples Forget When Choosing a Ceremony Venue

(23/08/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning |
There is a very simple thing that makes all the difference when choosing your ceremony venue. Forgetting to do it is a serious oversight ... Read on...

The Shocking Truth about Wedding Dresses (22/08/2016)

Categories: Wedding Budget | Wedding Dresses |
The single biggest contributor to the carbon footprint of your wedding may surprise you ... Read on...

How to Avoid the #1 Wedding Embarrassment (15/08/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning
The most feared wedding embarrassment is something that nobody wants to do in public, let alone at their wedding ... Read on.....

6 Good Reasons to Celebrate when Something Goes Wrong at your Wedding

(updated 26/07/2017)
Categories: Wedding Planning
There is no such thing as a perfect wedding, But that's reason to celebrate, and here's why...Read on....

Wedding Psychology: How and Where to Stand (30/07/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony
How and where the bride and groom stand during the ceremony not only impacts on photographs of the ceremony, it can have a far-reaching impact on the marriage,   Read on....

Bali Weddings (27/07/2016)

Categories: Wedding Legals | Wedding Planning
Everything you need to know about getting married with an Australian celebrant in Bali ...  Read on...

10 Things we "Know" about Getting Married that Ain't So (26/07/2016)

Categories: Wedding Legals | Wedding Planning
As Artemus Ward said 'It ain't so much the things we don't know that get us in trouble. It's the things we know that ain't so.' In wedding land there are a lot of common beliefs that just aren't true ...  Read on....

How to get the best "getting ready" photos (23/07/2016)

Categories: Wedding Planning
Ensuring that your 'getting ready' photos are fantastic requires not just a photographer with skills and a good eye, but some preparation on the part of the bridal party.   ...  Read on....

How to create a talking logo for your wedding  (23/07/2016)

Categories: Wedding Planning
Borrow a tool from business networking for effective communication about your wedding  ...  Read on....

10 lessons learned from 700+ weddings (21/07/2016)

Categories: Wedding Planning
Ten years of officiating weddings, both legal and non-legal, have dished up some  pretty interesting lessons, some of which might surprise  ...  Read on....

Scottish Islamic Tartan (19/07/2016)

Categories: Inclusive Weddings | Wedding Planning
Anyone, regardless of faith or genetic background can have a Tartan Wedding, something demonstrated by an official registered tartan  ... Read on....

The Problem with Wedding Readings (17/07/2016)

Categories: Celebrant | Wedding Ceremony
Most people assume that you have to have readings in a wedding ceremony. Unfortunately, on the day they often don't work ... Read on....

Microphone Wars  (17/07/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony
Most celebrants use a hand-held microphone. But is that the best choice? ... Read on....

Food, Flowers, and Furniture (updated 30/07/2018)

Categories: Celebrant | Wedding Ceremony
Every now and then, someone asks me what I supply in terms of styling and other add-ons for a wedding ... Read on....

Drone and GO  (06/08/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony | Wedding Planning
Drone and GO, sounds like the typical wedding ceremony, doesn't it - the celebrant drones on, and eventually you get to kiss and go. But that's not what this post is about ... Read on....

Talking Heads (13/07/2016)

Categories: Wedding Ceremony
Let's face it. Most wedding ceremonies are pretty ordinary. And that's partly because they are all about words. Bride, Groom, and Celebrant as Talking Heads, with the celebrant doing 98% of the talking ...Read on....