4 steps to personalising your wedding vows

When it comes to the words you say on your big day, the more personal the better!

Gone are the days when couples had no control over their vows or the style of their ceremony. No one wants to sit through an hour-long sermon, or turn up to watch another celebrant read the same lines and poems they’ve delivered a hundred times before.

Quite contrary, the trend today is to create very personal vows. Modern brides are looking for ideas, inspiration and those unique, modern twists on the traditional wedding.

Below, I reveal my four top tips to help you create wedding vows that are truly heartfelt and unique.

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Jo Hurley
Trend alert: sustainable weddings

It’s undeniable that today’s brides are more conscious than ever of the need to think eco-friendly when planning their wedding.

Sustainability is a way of life, and your nuptials should be no exception. There are so many options to help reduce your eco-footprint. From choosing local suppliers to opting for organic make-up, creating a ‘greener wedding’ is really easy to achieve one decision at a time.

When it comes to sustainable wedding planning, there are some great celebrity examples. Remember Natalie Portman and Benjamin Millepied’s vegan wedding in 2012? Or Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank, who made their wedding a completely plastic free celebration?

To help you get hitched in a more eco-friendly way, I’ve gathered my top industry tips for a sustainable wedding.

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Jo Hurley
How to write a fool-proof wedding day run sheet

Getting married is one of the most exciting times in your life.

There’s the proposal, the engagement party, the dress shopping, the wedding planning. Suddenly your life becomes a whirlwind of decisions and things to do that are loads of fun, but also totally exhausting!

When it comes to getting organised, a run sheet is one of the must-have items for your wedding day. Also known as a running order or an event order - a wedding day runsheet is a document that helps everyone know how you want your big day to play out. It starts from the moment you first wake up and ends with your guests leaving the venue at the end of the night.

I’ve caught up with Yvette Sitters, founder of Manage My Wedding, to get her tips on writing a fool-proof and fun wedding day run sheet.

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Jo Hurley
What does your wedding celebrant actually do?

Congratulations, you’re getting married!

More than likely, this is the first and only time you’ll ever plan your own wedding. And, let’s face it - it’s not every day you have to shop around for a wedding celebrant!

Google, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest are great ways to start getting to know the best celebrants in your area. But, once you’ve made a little shortlist of your favourite people, what next?

The first rule of thumb is to really focus on choosing a celebrant you trust. When meeting for the first time, listen to your ‘gut’ feeling. If you instantly click and it feels just right, don’t hesitate. Book it in!

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Jo Hurley
Wedding arbours – styling that’s inspired by innovation over tradition

Guest blog by Emma Scott, For Love and Living - boutique wedding planning, styling and hire service

For Love and Living has been creating design concepts for Love Story Ceremonies for the past year.

When Jo Hurley first approached us to create beautiful spaces for her to demonstrate her work as a celebrant, it was a no- brainer to create a series of stunning, modern wedding arbour installations. We designed these arbours to represent the intimate moment Jo shares as a celebrant with her real-life couples on their wedding day.

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Jo Hurley
How music can create that magic wedding vibe

Your wedding music will create the mood for your whole event. Picture your guests arriving and imagine the experience you want them to have. A visually beautiful wedding takes on a whole new feel when it is enhanced by a beautiful sound.

Maybe music is high on your priority list, or maybe you haven’t even given it a second thought. One thing is for sure, if you aren’t involved in weddings every day, it can be easy to mess up this crucial element of your big day.

To help make your day unforgettable, I’ve revealed my top wedding music tips

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Jo Hurley
MAFS addicts: find the venues and inspiration behind TVs best weddings of the season! – part 4

Over the past few weeks, we’ve been looking at the finer details of this year’s MAFS weddings and locations. The final installment on this journey takes us to three beautiful club-style weddings with a difference. 

Come and join as at Mike and Heidi’s nuptials at the Byron Surf Life Saving Club as well as Sam and Elizabeth’s and Melissa and Dino’s weddings at the Sydney Polo Club.

Image: Byron Bay Surf Club by Pavilion Marquees

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Jo Hurley
MAFS addicts: find the venues and inspiration behind TVs best weddings of the season! – part 3

Over the past couple of weeks we’ve stepped back in time and taken a closer look at the gorgeous styling and locations of this year’s parkland- and country chic-inspired Married At First Sight weddings.

Today we are all about elegance, delving into the finer details of Martha and Michael’s wedding at Regent Theatre in Melbourne and Nic and Cyrell’s nuptials at Curzon Hall in Marsfield.

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Jo Hurley
MAFS addicts: find the venues and inspiration behind TVs best weddings of the season! – part 2

Wedding season is still in full swing and what better way to get in the mood, than delving into the themes, locations and styling ideas Married at First Sight has brought to our screens this year.

Today, we go country-chic and check out Ines and Bronson’s wedding at Forget Me Not, Mick and Jessika’s nuptials at Gurragawee Eco Venue and Matthew and Lauren’s celebration at Earth House.

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Jo Hurley
MAFS addicts: find the venues and inspiration behind TVs best weddings of the season!

Australia’s favourite, romantic reality TV show is back! And, while Married At First Sight dishes up all the drama, romance and heartbreak, it is also an awesome resource for wedding inspo.

Much to our dismay the show all but brushed over the getting married part. So, we’ve decided to rewind time and take a closer look at the range of gorgeous locations and themes that set the scene for this year’s MAFS nuptials.

Image: Garden House, by Atlantic Group

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Jo Hurley
My top tips for a fabulous summer wedding

Sunny days, late nights, gentle breezes and the odd storm… summer has definitely arrived. And, with everyone in holiday mode, no wonder this time of year is a favourite for proposals and weddings! 

If you’re planning a summer wedding, here are my top tips to make the most of what summer has to offer.

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Jo Hurley
Planning a wedding on the Gold Coast? Here’s what you need to know.

Whether you call the Gold Coast home, or are planning a destination wedding, our beautiful backyard really is the perfect setting for your big day.

Imagine saying ‘I do’ nestled against the rugged mountain backdrop of the Gold Coast hinterland, or while you dig your toes into the warm sands of our pristine beaches. You might even want to sail away to a secluded island just off the coast. The options really are endless and exciting…

Below are some of my top local insights to help you start planning your dream Gold Coast wedding.

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Jo Hurley
Social media wedding etiquette – the dos and don’ts

Love it or hate it, social media is everywhere. It stalks us on our holidays, distracts us at work and too often it even follows us to bed – we are almost married to our devices!

As much as we love sharing every Insta-worthy cocktail, holiday selfie and cute puppy photo; when it comes to weddings, it’s definitely time to slow down and follow some simple social media rules.

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Jo Hurley
The Gold Coast’s finest beach wedding locations

The Gold Coast truly has the perfect ingredients for couples looking to snub tradition in favour of a romantic beach wedding.

Endless strips of golden sand, rocky outcrops, crystal clear creeks and lush green backdrops. The stunning weather – well, that’s the icing on the cake.

If you’re struggling to pick the perfect spot to say ‘I do’ along our stunning stretch of coast, here are our top five secret picks.

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Jo Hurley
How to choose the perfect celebrant

Planning a wedding can be overwhelming. We rarely find ourselves in situations with quite as many choices to make. The cake, the invitations, the dress, music, location, food, guests… the list goes on.

While all these things will help you create the perfect day, it is the ceremony itself, which creates that everlasting first impression and lifelong memories for you and your guests. The person who sets the tone for the ‘I do’s’is your celebrant. Here are my top five top tips on how to choose the right one for this very important role.

 

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Jo Hurley