Intro and Inspiration: A guide to designing an unforgettable occasion

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Hello and a very warm welcome to Amie Jackson Weddings and my corner of the internet

– I’m so glad you are here! On this wedding and event planner’s blog you will find insider tips, inspiration, ideas to elevate your event, and of course, if you have any questions along the way do get in touch – I would love to hear from you.

Firstly, introductions… I’m Amie, a wedding and party planner based in Surrey and also serving London, the Cotswolds and working with passionate likeminded people throughout the UK.

My business was born from the desire to create meaningful moments, focus on joy, instil inspiration, and create the ultimate stress-free and fun planning environment for modern couples.

Diving into the idea of inspiration, I would like to talk with you about where I get my wedding ‘inspiration’ and why it’s such a buzzword in the wedding industry. So where can you find inspiration for the design, look and feel of your special day? Here I will share my secrets to a sensational event that not only looks great but feels amazing too.

Your story

As a wedding planner, I never design for designs sake, instead I focus on a carefully curated collection of meaningful moments that reflect you. Simply put, my main source of inspiration is you and your tale. Don’t worry, you don’t need a star-crossed lover’s story, but you will have your interests, moments, quirks, likes, and of course, personalities that can be infused into your day. As a wedding planner, it’s my job to create your wedding, your way, and that means being really purposeful with your special day – there isn’t a checklist of all the elements that make up a perfect wedding, so instead try to focus on creating a day full of your favourite things – those little details that makes your heart sing.

Not quite sure where to start…? Pour yourself a glass of wine and sit down with your partner to chat through these questions:

What are your hobbies and interests?

Where did you meet?

How have you decorated your home (modern, minimalist, elegant, eclectic etc)?

What are your favourite places you have travelled and what made the trip(s) so memorable?

What is your favourite/least favourite colours?

What five words would you like used to describe your wedding?

What is your favourite scent?

What types of music do you listen to?

Talk about one of your favourite dates or moments together – what made it so special?

When do you feel happiest and most inspired?

Having talked through the questions above, list a few of your response and see if anything jumps out at you, for example, if you have said that you love being in the countryside, the scent of roses and your hobbies all take place outside then you may consider an English garden style wedding and realise that one of your priorities is having an outside ceremony.

People and personalities will always be my main source of inspiration, but you may be wondering where else you can seek ideas for the design of your day. Below I will guide you through some of my favourite sources of inspiration.

Architecture

I have a personal passion for Georgian architecture – I just love the clean lines, symmetry, and pared-back decoration.  For me, this would translate into an event that has a relaxed yet refined feel. Elegant but understated. I would seek out spaces with huge light drenched windows and a gorgeous façade that doesn’t need too much fussing. Knowing the feel or atmosphere you would like to create is one of the most important tasks when designing your day. Understanding the ambiance will help you in your decision making process. With my example above, I would seek out venues that would fit my brief – exclusive English manor houses, stunning stately homes or even light-filled orangeries or glasshouses.

Already have your venue sorted? Fantastic! As a wedding planner I would look to this as my next muse. Working with the style of your venue to enhance its features will be much easier (and aesthetically pleasing) than trying to fight it. Look at the architectural style, light, décor’ and colours, are there any key features for example, a staircase, fireplace or beautiful window that will serve as a focal point?

Travel

Conjure up images of favourite places you have visited – a special trip you have taken together or even some of your favourite dates. If you have photographs get these out and take a stroll down memory lane. What did you eat, drink, see and smell? Perhaps you remember the lemon groves, cerulean hued ocean, and full bodied red wine from that trip to Italy? Include nods to these meaningful moments in your wedding plans. With this as inspiration you could include fresh fruit, gorgeous, scented greenery such as Eucalyptus and a hint of blue in the colour palette in homage to the Italian seascape.

Fashion & Design

The catwalk can be a great source to spark creativity. Identify which styles you love, are they chic and elegant, bold and modern, or perhaps minimalist? Knowing what appeals to you can help narrow down your overall design concept. Look at shop window displays (high end boutiques and large department stores often have beautifully styled designs) and check out fashion and design magazines and blogs and see what resonates with you.

Nature

Look to the natural world for ideas. Consider the season you are getting married, but don’t feel tied to the traditional look or colour palette. Just because you’re getting married in the Autumn doesn’t mean you need to include earthy tones and rustic wood styling, but you may want to consider which flowers and produce will be in season.

Take yourself to the countryside, coast or even a park and see what natural beauty you can find. Pay close attention to the colours, shapes and raw textures – nature has the best designs!

Art

Whether or not you think of yourself as an ‘arty’ person, a trip to an art gallery or museum (even virtually) can evoke all sorts of responses. I love the V&A, it has huge collections from architecture, furniture, fashion (including wedding gowns), textiles, photography, sculpture, painting, jewellery, and theatre to name a few – a feast for the eyes! Look carefully at the colours, patterns and textures.  Can you imagine any of these elements incorporated into your day? Perhaps you love the silk velvet capes and wish to include this fabric in your design, for example, as ribbons tied around your napkins or trailing from your bouquet. Or maybe you will find inspiration from the botanical motif wallpaper and wish to include an element of this in your stationery suite. Thousands of years of beauty and design can prove a wonderful resource.

Wedding table laid out in the garden

The Wedding World

Now that you’ve got a good idea of your vision for the day, head on over to the wedding world. Pinterest is the most obvious source once you have gathered a few ideas (I find jumping in straight away leads to randomly pinning what’s in vogue rather than what’s meaningful to you). It is, however, a great place to create a collection of images that ignites your imagination. But don’t forget magazines (from interior design and fashion too), Instagram (you can get really specific with hashtags) and wedding blogs as well. Just remember it’s your day so find those pictures that really speak to you or offer ideas, but never feel like you need to replicate an exact image – being authentic and telling your story will always have the most meaningful impact.

I hope you have found these ideas useful. If you would like support designing an unforgettable day, please get in touch here.

I offer a range of services from ad-hoc online consultations through to full wedding and event planning.

Photography by Claire Graham and Katie Julia