Guest lists poured over and numbers reluctantly streamlined to abide by the government guidelines? Well the contrasting news outlining different guest numbers according to location is leaving many brides gritting their teeth in dismay.
Depending upon your planned wedding date, months of meticulous planning undertaken to execute your dream wedding may be temporarily on hold, however there has been some hope on the horizon as restrictions are slowly being lifted.
In Scotland, wedding receptions - but without alcohol - can take place with up to 50 people from 26 April.
Wedding ceremonies in Northern Ireland are currently limited to 25 people and receptions are banned. But dates for lockdown easing reviews are set for 15 April, 13 May and 10 June.
From 29 March in England, weddings can be attended by a maximum of six people. This will rise to 15 after 12 April if Covid rates remain low, increasing to a limit of 30 after 17 May. Receptions are included in the plans, but only in certain venues.
Where family relatives or friends are unable to attend given the restrictions on numbering, churches will be happy to explore ways to allow others to join the service, either through platforms such as Skype, and live streaming or recording the service to send at a later date to anyone unable to attend.
In addition, the government has advised that elderly and health compromised individuals avoid attending weddings until the situation has stabilised.
However, this doesn’t mean that they can’t be included in your celebrations.
Here is the 2021 bride's best ways to get them involved:
Ask your venue if they have video link equipment and invite absent guests to join you via video call for the speeches or ceremony
If you’re having a videographer, stage a special screening of your wedding video just for them when it’s ready and have a live “watch party” on Facebook.
Set aside an order of service and wedding favour and present them to your absent guest/s after the wedding
Create a digital guestbook where guests can leave messages about how you met and what you mean to them
Save them a slice of wedding cake!
Create a wedding hashtag and ask guests to upload pictures and videos throughout the day and have absent guests follow the action
Commission an It’s My Wedding personalised magazine which captures your love story and big day that can both include absent loved ones as well as be sent to them in the post or digitally, afterwards.
Having a skeleton bridal party on the day will be a big change to what you had expected, however with It’s My Magazine, the professional team of copywriters and graphic designers work with your submissions to capture so many different elements of your loved ones to compensate for the fact they can’t be there in person on the actual day.
These can include:
How you met your bridal party: Stories and tales of booze themed uni days and bar crawling nights may have been the seeds of a friendship of a lifetime. Celebrate your bridal party who due to these restrictive measures won’t be physically there in person, but definitely in your magazine as we interview them and get their side of your story.
Your proposal story: Was it planned with many helpers involved? Did your other half call on your nearest and dearest to arrange the ultimate surprise? Who was the first friend or family member you told and what was their response? Did you have an engagement party prior to lockdown? Share the photos, as that was a celebration most of whom would have been the same guests for your wedding and capture it all within your new style of photo album, as traditional albums won’t tell the whole story.
Your wedding planning: Who were the special people that attended your dress shopping sessions and your cake tastings? Get their thoughts and feelings about the process.
A new style hen & stag: This new day of virtual based interactions means that your hen and stag may look completely different to what you had planned. An online Skype games night may now be your chosen “last night of freedom” event. Preserve your shenanigans in your personalised wedding magazine.
Your ceremony & reception: Capture your planned readings and all important speeches in your bespoke magazine. What about your messages from all of your wedding cards and digital guest book? Don’t miss out on all that emotion and sentiment.
GuestWatch: If you’ve already purchased the bridesmaids, groomsmen and flower girls outfits, don’t let that go to waste just because of capacity restrictions at your big day. We won’t let those great outfits (including mother of the bride’s) languish, never to be seen!
These are just some of the ways It’s My Wedding Magazine can help to ensure you have a full wedding experience. Get in touch with their team to discuss your ideas here:
Some points courtesy of hitched.co.uk