A big Shout Out to Liz Currie who specialises in painting bouquets.
- ★ Greenery may soon be dethroned as the most popular wedding trend with personalised signsbecoming more and more popular. Greenery will be featured in 59% of Spring weddings while personalised signs will be featured in 56.5% of weddings
- ★ Despite boho chic weddings gaining popularitymacrame seems to have done its dash, with only 2.5% of couples including it in their wedding decor
- ★ 41% of Spring brides will do a speech compared with 37% of Winter brides as more couples choose to buck the groom-only speech on the big day
- ★ Hoops and circular designs have remained a popular feature of decor throughout the year
Flowers that are in bloom all year round, such as roses and baby’s breath, make up many of the most popular wedding flowers during the springtime. However, we are seeing a few exceptions when it comes to the rule.
Peonies have a small seasonal window closer to November and December, but are still the second most popular flower throughout the entire Spring season. This is despite the fact that florists will have to order them in from overseas for couples to be able to have them.
Most popular wedding themes
Rustic weddings are still the most popular theme for weddings across the year and have performed strongly throughout all of 2018. Not surprisingly, garden and outdoor weddings become more popular during springtime.
Overall, boho chic weddings have risen in popularity throughout 2018 and are the sixth most popular theme during spring. In comparison, we’re seeing vintage and vineyard weddings become less popular as more vintage elements are adopted by other themes, and vineyard weddings are beaten out by the casual vibe of DIY and boho chic weddings.
Spring is the most popular time of year for couples choosing to get married, and 2018 is no exception. For the first time, our Spring Wedding Outlook takes a specific look at Spring weddings, including costs, trends and the most popular dates, colours and themes of 2018.
The Spring Wedding Outlook is our second quarterly report for 2018 and includes responses from 430+ couples getting married in September, October and November this year to see how they are planning their day and what spring weddings really look like in Australia.
This outlook also uses data from the Easy Weddings 2018 Winter Wedding Outlook, as well as our 2018 Annual Wedding Industry Report which surveyed more than 3,000 couples. Easy Weddings is Australia’s number one wedding marketplace trusted by more than 80% of couples to help plan their wedding day.
The vows…… one of the parts of the wedding where even the strongest hearts grow faint. Its really not that hard. I love helping couples write unique and heartfelt vows.
Here are 10 really original Wedding Vows
By Lucy from Easy Weddings.
Here are some of our favourite vows we’ve ever heard to give you some inspo for when it’s your time to write your vows to your spouse. It can be a tricky little endeavour to write your vows, but it’s worth it when you get up there at the ceremony and spill your heart out to your love. Here are some of the best wedding vows we’ve ever heard:
Succinct but eloquent:
“You were my reason back then, my reason now, my reason every day. You strengthen my weaknesses, bring focus to my dreams. Here and now I pledge my life to yours, that your dreams become my dreams. No matter where life leads me, I know that as long as you are there, that is where I am meant to be.” – iammisanthrope
Preston Burke to Cristina Yang:
“Cristina, I could promise to hold you and to cherish you. I could promise to be in sickness and in health. I could say, til death do us part. But I won’t. Those vows are for optimistic couples, the ones full of hope. And I do not stand here, on my wedding day, optimistic or full of hope. I am not optimistic, I am not hopeful, I am sure. I am steady. And I know that I am a heart man. I take them apart and I put them back together and I hold them in my hands. I am a heart man. So this I am sure, you are my partner, my lover, my very best friend, my heart, my heart beats for you. And on this day, the day of our wedding, I promise you this: I promise you to lay my heart in the palm of your hands, I promise you… me”. -Grey’s Anatomy
A twist on the classic:
[Other person’s name], I love you./ You have brought such joy to my life./ Thank you for loving me as I am/ and taking me into your heart./ I promise to walk by your side forever/ and to love, help, and encourage you/ in all that you do./ I will take the time to talk to you/ to listen to you/ and to care for you./ Through all the changes of our lives,/ I will be there for you always/ as strength in need,/ a comfort in sorrow,/ a counselor in difficulty,/ and a companion in joy./ Everything I am and everything I have is yours/ now and forevermore./ This is my promise to you.
I give you this ring. / Wear it with love and joy. / As this ring has no end, / neither shall my love for you. / I choose you to be my (wife/husband) / this day and forevermore. -oerath
From Sacred Ceremony Book:
“_______, today we begin our lives together. I promise before our families and our friends to be your faithful (husband/wife). I choose to live with you, as your lover, companion and friend, loving you when life is peaceful, and when it is painful, during our successes, and during our failures, supported by your strengths, and accepting your weaknesses. I will honor your goals and dreams, trying always, to encourage your fulfillment. I will strive to be honest, and open with you, sharing my thoughts, and my life with you. I promise to love and cherish you from this day forward.”
An Authors stance:
“I wish I could stand up here and promise you the world, but the world isn’t mine to give. What I do promise is my world, and all it entails. My love, support, passion, compassion, and enthusiasm.
I wish I could promise smooth sailing, but the winds aren’t mine to control. What I do promise is a ship built to carry you to safely, and sails to weather any storm.
I wish I could promise you forever, but someone infinitely great than I already has. What I do promise is every second of this time sliver of eternity I’ve been blessed with.
I wish I could promise you riches, but every vault has it’s end. What I do promise you is a life of abundance—And abundance of love and support, of strength and vulnerability, of sharing and drive, of passion, and of adventure.
I wish I could promise to always be as roguishly handsome as I am today, but, well … On second thought, have you seen my dad? Maybe that’s a promise I can keep.
I can’t even promise I’ll never hurt you, because even the best of intentions sometimes fall short. What I do promise is to always reach for you over my pride; to hold you, to heal you, and to seek forgiveness.” – Connor Jame Drake
Nothing short of love:
“The heart of every true romantic buff
Is driven by the one sustaining need
To find a deep and everlasting love
—And luckily I’ve found my one indeed
Although we sometimes can’t see eye to eye
I’m still amazed just how alike we are
Most differences are merely by the by
When on ahead we see our future far
So now I swear for all the years to come
Especially when youth has run its due
Unlike the bright but short-lived sparks of some
Our timeless love will long be shining through
For all the reasons I’ve described above
I promise we’ll have nothing short of love” – Chris Jester-Young
Celebrating unbounded love
Published in the Warrandyte Diary 5th February 2018
WARRANDYTE-BASED Marriage Celebrant, Lisa Hunt-Wotton was instrumental in helping Simone Gemmell and Rebecca Lauder become one of the first same-sex couples to legally marry in Australia.
Simone, who attended Warrandyte High School, and Rebecca had been engaged for three years and were six months into planning their commitment ceremony when the same-sex plebiscite was held.
The couple told the Diary how delighted they were when the same-sex marriage bill was finally passed. “This, to us, felt surreal.
“We didn’t think, with all the controversy, that Australia would actually come to the game and when they did it was a feeling like no other.
“We sat on the couch together, drink in hand and just took in what had just happened.”
Rebecca went on to discuss how, prior to the same-sex marriage bill, she experienced frustration in their inability to legally proclaim their commitment to each other.
“It was a constant reminder that we were different… it felt like our wedding, which was important to us, wasn’t as important to others because of the law.”
With the bill set to become law on January 9, Simone, Rebecca and Lisa had a new challenge to encounter, the date they had set for their original commitment ceremony was three days before the law would be passed.
Lisa was determined to make sure the couple could do it right, do it once and do it on the day they had planned to, so the celebrant immediately began studying the law to see if there was any way the women could legally marry before the bill officially came into effect.
“I called the girls and said that there were five reasons why the government would grant a change of date and that I thought they qualified for one of them,” says Lisa.
The couple made multiple trips to Births, Deaths and Marriages Victoria and were given a decision on December 21, that they would be legally allowed to marry on January 6.
“It was truly a day we will never forget, a moment of sheer excitement,” the couple told the Diary.
Simone and Rebecca were married by Lisa, in front of all their friends and family, in Panton Hill.
“That day will always be the happiest day of my life, seeing her smile and signing those papers was our special moment for us to always have,” says Simone.
Rebecca added, “I’m the happiest I have ever been and words will never express what the YES vote has done for me, my partner, family, friends and children in the future.
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart”.
Photo: Sigrid Petersen Photography
One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life: That word is love.― Sophocles
The Mystery of Love by Lisa Hunt-Wotton
It is no small thing for me that as a Commonwealth Registered Celebrant I get to walk couples across the threshold of marriage. It is a great privilege and something that I hold very dear. To experience over and over again the wonder of love. The open hearts, the vows, the promises and the values that they choose to build their lives upon.
Each couple, each person so unique, so precious. Each wedding so incredibly different. A reflection of the lives and creativity of each couple. Whether a small private gathering of 8 people or a crowd of 250 people, each is magical and full of wonder in their own special way.
This weekend I conducted five weddings across Melbourne. Friends looked on in exhaustion but I revelled in the celebration of love and mystery of relationships. You see I fall in love with each couple. I grieve a little at the end of each wedding as our journey comes to its rightful conclusion. I am constantly in awe at the beauty of each soul and the glimpse that I get into the communities of love that surround them.
For many of us marriage encapsulates the mystery of love. The very nature of a wedding ceremony is about capturing the love essence of each couple and what love means to them. Two people fell in love which is why they are getting married. The marriage ceremony is the public demonstration of that love and their commitment to stay in love and to choose love each day over the course of their lives together.
These two readings by Nicholas Sparks and Anne Morrow talk about love and relationships and what it means.
I am nothing special; just a common man with common thoughts, and I’ve led a common life. There are no monuments dedicated to me and my name will soon be forgotten. But in one respect I have succeeded as gloriously as anyone who’s ever lived: I’ve loved another with all my heart and soul; and to me, this has always been enough.
GIFT FROM THE SEA BY ANNE MORROW LINDBERGH
When you love someone, you do not love them all the time in exactly the same way, from moment to moment. It is an impossibility. It is even a lie to pretend to. And yet this is exactly what most of us demand. We have so little faith in the ebb and flow of life, of love and of relationships. We leap at the flow of the tide and resist in the terror of the ebb. We are afraid it will never return.
We insist on permanency, on duration, on continuity, when the only continuity possible, in life as in love, is in growth, in fluidity, in freedom.
The only real security is not in owning or possessing, not in demanding or expecting, not in hoping, even. Security in a relationship lies neither in looking back to what was in nostalgia, not forward to what it might be in dread or anticipation, but living in the present relationship and accepting it as it is now.
Relationships must be like islands, one must accept them for what they are here and now, within their limits—islands, surrounded and interrupted by the sea, and continually visited and abandoned by the tides of life.
(Gift from the Sea, Anne Morrow Lindbergh)
When you read these pieces one thing is clear. Love is a mystery and love is a gift. You can’t own it, it is freely given and must be treasured. For love to grow it must face the challenges that growth brings. Love is like the sun and the earth.
Love is like the sun above you and the earth below you. Like the sun love should be a constant source of light, and like the earth, a firm foundation from which to grow.
Although not Buddhist, one couple chose to express their vows and promises in an amended version of Buddhist vows. These vows acknowledge the transitions, ebb and flow of relationship. They also encompass community, nature and the understanding that all things belong and that we are part of a larger picture.
Lisa: Do you pledge to help each other to develop your hearts and minds, cultivating compassion, generosity, ethics, patience, enthusiasm, concentration and wisdom as you age and undergo the various ups and downs of life and to transform them into the path of love, compassion, joy and equanimity?
Bride and Groom: “We do.”
Lisa: Recognising that the external conditions in life will not always be smooth and that internally your own minds and emotions will sometimes get stuck, do you pledge to see all these circumstances as a challenge to help you grow, to open your hearts, to accept yourselves, and each other; and to generate compassion for others who are suffering?
Bride and Groom: “We do.”
Lisa: Understanding that just as we are a mystery to ourselves, each other person is also a mystery to us, do you pledge to seek to understand yourselves, each other, and all living beings, to examine your own minds continually and to regard all the mysteries of life with curiosity and joy?
Bride and Groom: “We do.”
Lisa: Do you pledge to preserve and enrich your affection for each other? To take the loving feelings you have for one another and your vision of each other’s potential and inner beauty, and to radiate this love outwards in an example for all beings?
Bride and Groom: “We do.”
In its essence, love is about giving. It is about growing and it is about Shalom. It is learning about how to live in peace with your beloved and with everyone around you. It is understanding that true love gives and gives and keeps on giving. Marriage in its simplest form is making a public commitment to choose to love, over and over again each day. Through each ebb and through every high tide.
It is to commit to ‘undergo the various ups and downs of life and to transform them into the path of love, compassion, joy and equanimity?’. It is to radiate love to all beings. This is known the gospel of love to those who are followers of the teachings of Christ. Christ teaches us to love everyone the way that we love ourselves. In a way marriage is but an example of how we should treat every being.
The mystery of love is demonstrated and spoken out loud in the form of a Marriage ritual but love is not exclusive to marriage. Love is something that we should choose every day and demonstrate to every soul that we meet. It is found wherever value is placed upon another soul, where we step outside ourselves and demonstrate compassion and understanding. We need it more than ever and in every context. I think it may be impossible to love too much. In each day that we face on this earth and in every situation, lets choose love.
Funerals are as individual as you are. Each of us have a story to tell.
As such a funeral should be carefully crafted to reflect the person who has died.
I am well known for telling my friends and family what I want for my funeral – I’ve even told them what I want for my tomb stone.
“I told you I was sick”.
As a mother and step mother to six incredible kids, mother is the last on the list when she is sick. I’ve often told them they would step over me in the kitchen if I passed out, the main concern being: “What is for dinner”.
I’ve planned it all, I want a big red curtain on the stage like in the theatre. I’ve even picked out my songs. “Days like this” by Van Morrison,
“When it’s not always raining there’ll be days like this
When there’s no one complaining there’ll be days like this
When everything falls into place like the flick of a switch
Well my mama told me there’ll be days like this”.
And Harrry Connick Jnr version of “Good By Joe”: “Goodbye Joe me gotta go me oh my oh”.
OOHHHH and I want lots and lots of flowers. LOTS
Why am I telling you this?
Well I’m really concerned that as a Western culture we don’t embrace death. In fact we do everything we can to avoid it. If we don’t discuss these things, chat about them with each other then how will we ever know?
Do you want to be buried or cremated?
If you want to be cremated where do you want your ashes scattered?
I have a friend who since her mother has died has taken on the task to travel to as many countries as she can. In each place she scatters a bit of her mother. Her mother never got to travel. She figures better late than never.
My husband insisted as he was dying of cancer that he wanted to be cremated. In fact for as long as we had been married he had wanted to be cremated and his ashes scattered over the Murray River. Then weeks before he died he insisted that he wanted to be buried? He changed his mind. So we buried him.
My mother is 86, she has led a very creative and colourful life. Her great grand children call her ‘super gran’. When she dies she wants me to assemble the grandchildren and great grandchildren and have them paint her coffin???
She has joked about handing out ‘tasers’ to everyone at the funeral and the last person standing is the one who inherits her house. lol..
We have joked about putting pop corn in the casket and as it is filed into the crematorium – going out with a bang… or pop pop pop.
Is this making you uncomfortable? It shouldn’t.
These are all examples of how our death should reflect how we have lived.
We all respond differently when death comes into our lives and we will inevitably have different needs in terms of the ways in which we honour the deceased and our grief.
Ritual and ceremony at the time of death can be rich with meaning, healing and inspiration.
Whether the ceremony is a funeral or farewell service, a celebration of life, a memorial or a wake, it is a powerful and often painful rite of passage that signifies a farewell, a time of letting go and the beginning of a new relationship with the person who has gone.
The ceremony is about creating a safe space where the individuals life can be honoured and affirmed. It is important to acknowledge the person’s beliefs, and values, their stories and personality, the essence that made the unique, giving space for the expressions of all that was felt for the person who has died.
It is also an important part of your grieving process. A time when we hold a space for grieving.
“You need to allow yourself time to grieve. You think you won’t be able to go on, but you do cope. People say time heals, and it does … I am still standing, but it is still difficult for me at times. But you never lose the love that you shared together.” (Merna Curnow, 2009)
It’s an interesting conversation to have. Let’s face it. Every one of us is going to die. Its just a matter of when. We will all one day be a memory, lets do the best we can to leave a good one.
Featured Art by: Liezel Van Der Linde
I am often asked if I can suggest some lighthearted readings for weddings and ceremonies. So I thought I would put a small collection together for you. Enjoy – Lisa.
“I Rely on You,” by Hovis Presley
I rely on you
like a camera needs a shutter
like a gambler needs a flutter
like a golfer needs a putter
like a buttered scone involves some butter
I rely on you
like an acrobat needs ice cool nerve
like a hairpin needs a drastic curve
like an HGV needs endless derv
like an outside left needs a body swerve
I rely on you
like a handyman needs pliers
like an auctioneer needs buyers
like a laundromat needs driers
I rely on you.
“All I Ever Really Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten,”
by Robert Fulgham
All of what I really need to know about how to live, and what to do, and how to be, I learned in Kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sandbox at nursery school.
These are the things I learned…
Don’t hit people.
Put things back where you found them.
Clean up your own mess.
Don’t take things that aren’t yours.
Say sorry when you hurt somebody.
Wash your hands before you eat.
Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you. Give them to someone who feels sad.
Live a balanced life.
Learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day.
Take a nap every afternoon.
Be aware of wonder.
Remember the little seed in the plastic cup? The roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
Everything you need to know is in there somewhere.
And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when you go out into the world, it is best to hold hands and stick together.
From Captain Corellies Mandolin
by Louis de Bernières’
Love is a temporary madness,
it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides.
And when it subsides you have to make a decision.
You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part.
Because this is what love is.
Love is not breathlessness,
it is not excitement,
it is not the promotion of eternal passion.
That is just being “in love” which any fool can do.
Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident.
Those that truly love, have roots that grow towards each other underground,
and when all the pretty blossom have fallen from their branches,
they find that they are one tree and not two.
By Ian Duhig
I will be faithful to you, I do vow
but not until the seas have all run dry
although I mean it now,
I’m not a prophet and I will not lie.
To be your perfect wife, I could not swear;
I’ll love, yes; honour (maybe); won’t obey,
but will co-operate if you will care
as much as you are seeming to today.
I’ll do my best to be your better half,
but I don’t have the patience of a saint;
not with you,
at you I may sometimes laugh,
and snap too, though I’ll try to learn restraint.
We might work out: no blame if we do not.
With all my heart, I think it’s worth a shot.
The Life That I Have
by Leo Marks
The life that I have
Is all that I have
And the life that I have
The love that I have
Of the life that I have
Is yours and yours and yours.
A sleep I shall have
A rest I shall have
Yet death will be but a pause.
For the peace of my years
In the long green grass
Will be yours and yours and yours.
A Soul Mate
“A soul mate is someone who has locks that fit our keys, and keys to fit our locks. When we feel safe enough to open the locks, our truest selves step out and we can be completely and honestly who we are; we can be loved for who we are and not for who we’re pretending to be. Each unveils the best part of the other. No matter what else goes wrong around us, with that one person we’re safe in our own paradise. Our soul mate is someone who shares our deepest longings, our sense of direction. When we’re two balloons, and together our direction is up, chances are we’ve found the right person. Our soul mate is the one who makes life come to life.”
by Richard Bach
“I am nothing special; just a common man with common thoughts, and I’ve led a common life. There are no monuments dedicated to me and my name will soon be forgotten. But in one respect I have succeeded as gloriously as anyone who’s ever lived: I’ve loved another with all my heart and soul; and to me, this has always been enough.”
A blessing for you who are tired of loss
by Cameron Semmens
What doesn’t kill you just really, really hurts.
You say you are tired of loss…
I’m sorry for your losses.
I wish there was another way.
May these losses
grow your sense of appreciation for life
and the simple things.
May you, in time,
feel differently towards these losses – may you see
the subtle and hidden gains
within every loss.
What doesn’t kill you
just really, REALLY hurts…
but may these hurts
deepen your compassion;
broaden your empathy;
and stretch you into hidden potentials.
I wish I could say the losses will end, but I can’t –
The best I can offer –
may all your future losses be
and framed within community and love
than all your past losses.
I’m sorry for your loss
by Cameron Semmens, 9 April 2017
When planning a wedding the list of rituals and ceremonies to cover can actually get quite long. A white wedding dress, matching bridesmaids dresses, wedding veils, something borrowed something blue, rings on the fourth finger of the left hand, wedding cakes and sayings like tying the knot and giving your hand in marriage. What about the bouquet, the garter toss?? All of these rituals and ceremonies have a history and a beginning. Most are steeped in folk lore and involve good luck and protection from evil spirits.
Where did all of these things come from?
1. The custom of placing rings on the fourth finger of the left hand came from the Egyptians who believed that there is a vein of love that runs from from the heart to the fourth finger on the left hand signifying both the union of the hands and hearts.
2. Queen Victoria is credited with starting the Western world’s white wedding dress trend in 1840 — before then, brides simply wore their best dress.
3: Custom of the Eternity Ring. The custom of the eternity ring is thousands of years old and dates back to ancient Egypt. Wedding eternity rings are designed to symbolize the never-ending circle of both love and life. The Egyptians believed that love was eternal and was stronger than death.
4. If your bridesmaids are less than thrilled about matching dresses, tell them they’re good luck! The tradition of matching maids dates back to Roman times, when people believed evil spirits would attend the wedding in attempt to curse the bride and groom (how rude). Bridesmaids were required to dress exactly like the bride in order to confuse the spirits and bring luck to the marriage (source).
6. Tossing the Bouquet. Tossing the bouquet is a tradition that stems from England. Women used to try to rip pieces of the bride’s dress and flowers in order to obtain some of her good luck. To escape from the crowd the bride would toss her bouquet and run away. Sounds terrifying to me.
7. The original version of the Wedding Cake could give you a headache. One of the first traditions began in Ancient Rome where bread was broken over the bride’s head to bring good fortune to the couple. In Medieval England cakes were stacked as high as possible for the bride and groom to kiss over.
8. Ever wondered where the phrase “tying the knot” came from? In medieval days couples hands were bound together or hand fasted. It may have been a year before the local cleric or priest came though the celtic village so the couple would bind their hands together in a small ceremony before the community to pledge their love and committment to each other and to be hand fast or to tie the knot.
10. Where did the Honey Moon come from? “Honeymoon” also has origins that date back to the 5th century, when cultures represented calendar time with moon cycles. Back then, a newlywed couple drank mead (the “honey”) during their first moon of marriage. Mead is a honey-based alcoholic drink believed to have aphrodisiac properties.
In some very early honeymoon origins, including (but not just) Scandinavian, it involves kidnapping. Many brides were kidnapped by their grooms. They were then hidden away for months, until either their family stopped looking for them or they became pregnant (and thus it was considered too late for the marriage to be nullified) (source).
11: History of the bridal bouquet. The custom of carrying bouquets originated in ancient times, when it was believed that carrying or wearing strong-smelling herbs and spices would ward off evil spirits, ill health and bad luck. Later, Romans extended this tradition, when the bride and groom both wore garland made of herbs and spices that were expected to bring good luck and fertility. An actual bouquet came to symbolize a bride in bloom.
Traditional Celtic bouquets included ivy, thistle and heather. If a bride carried sage, the flower of wisdom, she was to become wise. If she carried dill, the flower of lust, well, she became lusty (if that’s a word). Flower girls would carry sheaves of wheat, which symbolized growth and fertility (Source).
12: Diamonds are Forever? Until the 19th century, all sorts of gems and stones were given to symbolise betrothal, even thimbles. The use of the diamond as an engagement ring really came about through a successful advertising campaign. In the 1930s, when demand for diamond rings declined in the U.S. during hard economic times, the De Beers Company began an aggressive marketing campaign using photographs of glamorous movie stars swathed in diamonds. Within three years, the sales of diamonds had increased by 50 percent.
In 1947, De Beers launched its now classic slogan, “A Diamond is Forever.” This campaign spurred even more sales. The implied durability of a diamond conveyed the meaning in the American psyche that marriage is forever. A diamond’s purity and sparkle have now become symbols of the depth of a man’s commitment to the woman he loves in practically all corners of the world.
I hope you found this as interesting as I did. Lisa.