Wedding season is beckoning, with the peak in August and December, throwing couples into a frenzy of last minute planning. The flowers, cake, tents, food, seats, guest list and all the miscellaneous expenses that will crop up along the way can send anyone into a panick.
Inspired by organising her own traditional nuptial and husband’s doctor of philosophy (PhD) graduation fete, Charyl Atieno Odhiambo Aseno, founded Che Dreamakers in late 2016 to actualise her passion, inspire dreams of young generation couples planning to walk down the aisle, and to stimulate a new benchmark of wedding planning market niche in Kenya.
A graduate of hospitality, tourism and events management, Charyl recently shared her wedding planning blueprint with BDLife writer Elvis Mboya.
“Decorations are a very important part of a wedding event. However simple they may be, your decorations can turn a special event into magical and a lifetime celebration that you have always dreamed of.
First you should clearly state what is to be decorated, you don’t really have to decorate every single nook and cranny to make a huge impact as long as you focus on the basic decor elements.
The church wedding ceremony lies at the very core of Christian wedding because it’s the moment when two lovers are united in the sacred bond of marriage.
Entrance: Your entrance can be marked church doors, a simple gate, huge flowers vases, pillars among others, but make sure it's not plain, incorporating flowers or garlands.
Aisle: Though optional, a decorated aisle looks better than a plain one, scattered flower petals, a red carpet, printed his and her artwork, walkways stands are among the innumerous ideas to decorate your aisle.
Pew decoration: Aside from making the chairs look more interesting, pew decorations will complement your aisle décor and connect the entrance with the arch. Things such as burlap tiebacks, stiff nets/tule laces, hanging mason jars and lanterns among others can be very good for pew decoration.
Altar, arch, chuppah: Whether it’s romantic or modern, a lovely arch will make the ceremony more memorable and also act as a great backdrop.
Wedding reception ceremony: Being the celebratory part of the wedding, the reception naturally has more areas to decorate as mentioned below.
Stage: This is the focal point of every wedding reception, in fact I'd advise that the biggest chunk of your decoration budget should be here. Printed, customised his and hers canvas, floral stages, led stages among others are used here.
Centerpieces: For a sit-down party, these are a must but even for standing parties, you still need centerpieces for very important person (VIP) and family tables.
If you have the money, go all out with the modern candelabras, long glass vases among others but if you're on a tight budget flowers in glass jars, wooden cuttings, DIY bottles among other can work well. Proper centerpieces make your guests feel appreciated.
Lightning: This enhances the atmosphere of the whole venue and makes all the decorations look alive. Add little touches of light here and there and for sure the ambience and beauty you'll achieve is beyond words.
Seating: The type of chair you use can affect the whole atmosphere, hence do proper homework first before settling down on one. Chairs range from the traditional plastic chairs to the modern chiavari chairs, ghost chairs, Louis chairs, bentwood, folding chairs, Versailles, tiffany mesh chairs, and chameleon chairs, just to name a few options.
Table setting: After you have made seating arrangements for your guests, make sure that they have pretty table settings.
You can choose to mix various types of tables in one event or just use one type as we have rectangular, round and square tables among others and please note that your choice of fabric of the linen used on the tables makes a whole of difference.
Flowers: After choosing the florist and flowers to use, please consult the types and placement of the flowers with the decorator.
Research wedding themes: It is good to start doing this early to have a cohesive image of what your wedding decoration will look like. By this you will know what can or cannot be used because good decor should complement and express your wedding theme.
Stick to your budget: Do not have a huge budget that will stress you. Get a vendor to work around your budget by disclosing it openly so that they can create something suitable within the budget.
Discuss everything: Have time to time discussions with your decorator before the big day to align your visions.
Sometimes you need to let go if your ego if the experts have some advice regarding your colour palette and wedding theme, therefore keep an open mind and do not instantly reject any suggestions that do not fit in what you had in mind.
Choose your flowers carefully: No matter how beautiful the flowers you want are, you should think carefully about the quantity and you also need to ascertain that they look good if mixed together.
Do not make your arrangements look tacky and messy by using every flower you love without considering the composition.
Do not be disorganised: List down everything you need along with the quantities, colours and if possible where you can get them.
If you are the visual type, create an inspiration board filled with photos of every single item you're going to have.
Do not skimp on the details: Do not say red if the color you want is maroon. Keep pictures of what you want to help your vendors to be more accurate when doing the wedding décor.
Don’t compare too many suppliers: When you compare so many suppliers, you waste alot of time that you need to put things in place with.”