EXPERT ADVICE

FAQs and expert advice about celebrant

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your Berks, Bucks and Oxon Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to editor@yourberksbucksoxon.wedding

Your Ceremony, Your Say

Your Ceremony, Your Say

Q What is a celebrant-led ceremony and why should we consider one?
A Suzi says: If you're imagining a tailor-made, memorable and celebratory ceremony, with personal vows and promises - and perhaps a symbolic ritual or two - then a celebrant-led ceremony is for you! As your chosen wedding celebrant, I ensure that your wedding ceremony is one-of-a-kind and reflects you and your love story.

What's possible and what are the benefits?
You can pretty much host your ceremony anytime, anywhere. One key benefit is that you get to choose who stands with you on your special day. I'll be a friendly face at the end of the aisle to help calm any nerves and celebrate your love. I'll also work closely with you to ensure your ceremony reflects your wishes and personality. We'll have fun including, and enjoying, so much more than just the legal statements and prescribed vows. There will be no restrictions on your vows, the movement of your photographer, music, readings, or moment-making rituals like a hand-fasting one - and we can include religious content and alcohol too. We can even perform the ceremony outdoors – except perhaps for the weather! What you will have in abundance is choice.

What can't you do?
I can't legally marry you. My couples and their two witnesses head to a register office in advance of their wedding day for a simple ceremony, usually followed by a nice lunch. There, you make the statutory declarations and sign your marriage certificate. I will then be able and honoured to announce you as married on your wedding day in front of your loved ones in a celebratory ceremony – one that stands out from any other.

Our chosen venue is licensed so can we still book a celebrant-led ceremony?
Absolutely! Your venue will be thrilled to host you however you choose to celebrate.

Suzi, Celebrations by Suzi

Your Ceremony, Your Say

Your Ceremony, Your Say

Q What is a celebrant-led ceremony and why should we consider one?
A Alison Carter says: The wedding ceremony lends itself to personalisation to a whole new level. By booking a celebrant-led ceremony, couples have the freedom to express themselves and their personalities. Here, are a few tips on how to create a ceremony that's as individual as you are:

•First of all, think about how you'd like your ceremony to feel because once that's agreed upon, it sets the tone for all the other elements.

•Be creative with the location (remember you will need to legally get married separately). You don't have to stick with the traditional ceremony space layout. How about a circular space with you both in the centre? Think of a way to bring all of your guests together with a group song or a group pledge.

•Choose or write a reading that truly says what you want to say to each other. Involve friends to create something personal for you – from a custom-made cake to a piece of art.

Alison Carter, Springwood Ceremonies

The great outdoors

The great outdoors

Q What are the benefits of having an outdoor celebrant-led ceremony?
A Colette Ashby says: Over the past few years, more and more couples are opting for celebrant-led ceremonies. They are fast becoming the go-to choice for today's couples who want the freedom to pick where, when and how they marry.

One of the main benefits of having a celebrant officiate at your wedding ceremony is that you can tie the knot almost anywhere – you have complete freedom of choice over your venue, time and ceremony content. Outdoor ceremonies are a growing trend amongst couples wanting to say 'I do' in a beautiful and natural setting.

So what are your options for an outdoor ceremony? The only limit is your imagination! Most traditional wedding venues have gorgeous gardens that can be transformed into a stunning ceremony space and, of course, you have nature as your backdrop.

When deciding on your venue for a celebrant-led wedding, you have more choice than you may realise, as you don't have to get married in a licensed venue. Imagine exchanging vows on a beautiful beach or in a wild woodland glade. You can even hold your ceremony in your back garden as many people choose to do. What could be more special?

How about a super-relaxed ceremony in a field with a marquee or tipi for the reception, mobile catering and chilled-out guests? Nothing formal, just friends, family, fun and the beautiful English countryside.

Outdoor ceremonies can be lavish – think fabulous flower arches and an aisle created from rose petals, or maybe simple and rustic is more your style. Of course, there are factors to consider with an outdoor ceremony, (not least the weather) and this is where your celebrant will guide and advise you every step of the way.

Wherever you decide to marry, choose a celebrant to create and conduct a bespoke outdoor ceremony with a touch of sparkle.

Colette Ashby, Colette Ashby Celebrant

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