Unique Wedding Themes and Trends for 2018

Wedding Trends

Unique Wedding Invitations

A wedding invitation is the first glimpse your guests get of what to expect from your special day. Therefore, you want to create a fantastic first impression. It’s becoming increasingly popular to really make an impact with unique invitations to set the tone for the theme or dazzle with gold and silver.

Welcome Boxes

It’s been a tradition in weddings to provide the guests with a small gift as a token of your appreciation for them sharing your special day with you. For 2018, a welcome box for guests which can include bottles of wine, candles and other small gifts to remember the day by.

Food Trucks

In Australia, the Food Truck has become an adored addition to markets, festivals, and events everywhere. As they are a one-stop shop, allow for a small variety of choices and can be eaten on the go, they’re the perfect addition to feed your guests at your 2018 wedding reception.

Wedding Themes


Vintage has always been a popular theme, as its classic look is timeless and works for couples of all ages. This continues to be a trend for 2018 and is a style that will undoubtedly pass the test of time.


Rustic weddings are really on trend for 2018. Here we are referring to everything from barnyard venues and rustic vintage farm equipment, all delicately placed together with perfect romantic lighting, to create a whimsical space for your big day.


Bohemian weddings envelop many wedding styles, including rustic and vintage, but in that classic, laid-back boho flair. The Bride and Bridesmaids’ dresses take on a more carefree and down to earth look and even the Groomsmen’s suits often adopt a similar alternative and unconventional feel. Often the scenery and venue will encompass nature through gardens, bushlands or beaches.

So, there are some options to get you started on planning your dream wedding in 2018. If you’re looking for an experienced marriage celebrant who operates within Sydney and the Blue Mountains, then contact Philip Holland. He can guide and assist you with tailoring your ceremony to perfectly fit with your chosen theme. Contact us today.

Tips for Writing Your Personal Wedding Vows

For many couples, writing your own personal vows is a special way of expressing your love for each other on your wedding day. It can often be difficult to get started and know just what to say. Philip Holland, Marriage Celebrant has helped many couples put together the perfect words for their special day and can assist you through the process too. Here are a few tips to writing your own vows.

Find Some Examples

Luckily, there are plenty of examples of vows available on the internet. Do your research so you can gauge just how to structure your vows, what to include and how long they should be. This should also provide you with plenty of inspiration to include in your personal vows.

Reflect on Your Relationship

Remember, your vows should reflect your personal journey with your partner and a great way to do this is to make a list of special moments and the bond you share. Getting it all out like this can help you to pull together something unique and personal, so your vows will reflect your individual relationship and the love that you share.

State Your Promises

The very principle behind your vows is that you’re making promises to your partner that you will keep throughout your marriage. Ensure you include promises that are unique to you as a couple, something very distinct and personal. These can be more general, such as “I promise to support you”, or they can be more specific, “I promise to dance with you always”. Choose something that you want to uphold throughout your life together.

Practise Saying Your Vows

Once you’ve written your vows, it’s important to practise saying them aloud. Saying it aloud can help you to see if sections don’t flow as they are spoken and ensures that you’ll feel comfortable saying them on the day. You also want to time yourself saying your vows as you want to keep them down to a maximum of a few minutes. It just helps to ensure they come out as naturally as possible and make the impact that you are hoping for on the day.

If you’re looking for a Marriage Celebrant in the Sydney area, contact Philip Holland and he can assist you with writing the absolute perfect vows for your special day. Contact today.

When Are the Most Popular Dates, Days and Seasons to get married in Australia?

Planning your wedding and confused about the day or season to have it on? Weddings overall can be exciting to plan but can also be stressful in terms of the sheer amount of work involved.

There are seven days in a week but the most popular day for a wedding is a Saturday. According to an online survey, a huge 62% of weddings take place on Saturdays as it’s the most convenient way for people to attend. It’s a day after Friday when people finish work for the week and are relaxed enough to enjoy any party or festivities. The second most popular day is a Friday, with Sunday being the third.

In terms of seasons, the most popular season for couples to choose is spring with more than 35% choosing to marry during this season. This is no surprise as spring means beautiful sunshine, warm days and lovely blooms; in short, all the perfect elements needed for an outdoor wedding. The lighting and blossoms allow for some magical outdoor photo opportunities for the bride and groom as well as the bridal parties.

The next most popular season is autumn where the temperatures are reasonably suited for a wedding function and best of all the tree leafs turning brown creates a fantastic backdrop for the ceremony and the photographs. In terms of months, the most popular one is March with November and September being a close second and third. This shows that March’s autumn weather holds its own against the popular spring season.

If you are planning to have your special day, it’s best to do ample research on the venue and date well in advance to avoid any disappointments. Another important thing to think about is the wedding celebrant who will handle your ceremony. As your wedding day can be one of the most important days in your life, you want to ensure you have the perfect venue, the ideal date and a great marriage celebrant to bring everything together for a memorable day.

What is a Civil Marriage Celebrant in Australia?

A marriage is an important day in a couple’s life and those close to them, such as their friends and family. You need to plan so many things properly, and well ahead of time, to ensure your big day plays out as envisioned. Whilst you will have many important guests at your wedding, one of the most important individuals at the wedding will be the civil marriage celebrant who performs the wedding ceremony.

In Sydney, Australia, the amarriage celebrant is approved by the Department of Attorney General in Australia to conduct formal events such as marriages. Other than marriages, they also conduct other events like funerals, renewing of vows or baby naming ceremonies. In order for the celebrant to conduct the marriage, they must be authorized under Australian law.

Marriage celebrants from religious communities are known as religious celebrants. The main difference between religious or civil ceremony is that during a religious ceremony, it is about being wed in the eyes of God.

Celebrants, whether they are civil or religious, must follow all the legal requirements for marrying a couple as outlined by the federal government. If the marriage takes place in a place of worship such as a church then there are few rules to follow. On the other hand, civil ceremonies have fewer restrictions.

Apart from weddings, celebrants also handle other services such as:

  • Naming ceremonies- This is a function where couples ask the celebrant to help them celebrate the arrival of the new baby.
  • Renewal of vows- Many couples ask celebrants to help them renew their marriage vows. This is a nice way to reiterate your love for your partner.

Funerals, memorials, and living Wakes- funerals and memorials are services where celebrants help loved ones celebrate the life of people they lost and come to terms with the void in their lives. A living wake is where someone with a terminal illness has their life celebrated by loved ones.

Trends in Wedding Photography to Create the Perfect Memories of Your Special Day

So, you’re planning your wedding in the Sydney area? There is a lot of planning to do in terms of wedding venue, the dress, the wedding celebrant, catering, music, flowers, décor and much more!

Whether it be capturing those perfect moments with the bride and groom, the playful celebration of the wedding party or candid moments of extended family and guests, an extremely important aspect of the day is the photography.

The photography on your wedding becomes one of the most precious and treasured mementos from the big day. These photos, all the way through from the ceremony, to the first dance and the cutting of the cake, will be cherished for a lifetime and even passed down through generations as mementos of the family.

Gone are the days when couples would pose in a closed room for boring portraits. Now it’s all about being modern and trendy with photos.

Some popular trends in wedding photography include:

  • Lots of natural light- natural light lends photos a fresh look. Outdoor weddings are the perfect events for photographers to utilize the natural light and create classic portraits that the couple will remember for a long time after the big day.
  • Mood and drama- some photographers prefer to take the dark route and opt for more moody and dramatic prints. They play with the light, angles, shadows, and textures to create multi-layered images. This is perfect for couples who prefer a more traditional approach.
  • Location matters- Photographers who think about the location have ample experience in fine art photography. They think about landscape and lighting and timing and as a result, you get exquisite images.
  • Creative- being creative in photography means opting for something out of the box. This could be choosing offbeat locations to shoot wedding portraits or utilizing creative props to ensure you get a dazzling result.

By planning early and well ahead of time, you will be sure to get the best photographer to capture those special moments!

The Top Ten Things You Can Expect from a Good Marriage Celebrant

Marriage celebrants servicing the Sydney areaare appointed by the Federal attorney-general. Celebrants are well aware of the legal proceedings in a wedding and will come to a marriage with all the required legal documents.

Marriage celebrants can help couples with more traditional wedding ceremonies. An experienced celebrant is a great asset to have as they will come prepared with all the legal documents.

A good marriage celebrant will help you with ensuring your big day runs smoothly:

  1. They will be friendly and oblige to the guests on the big day.
  2. They have a huge respect for people’s rights and freedoms.
  3. They value human relationships especially the couple and be aware of the social/cultural value of ceremonies.
  4. They have a lot of self-respect in terms of grooming and personal appearances as one would come to expect from a respected professional.
  5. They know how to lighten the mood and have a great sense of humor.
  6. They speak clearly with a proper diction.
  7. Have excellent theatre skills. They are not only great orators but also have the ability organize and handle any impromptu events.
  8. They are great event organizers and can help the bride/groom to design and prepare for their big day.
  9. They take the stress of preparing a big wedding and help the parents and close relatives to feel comfortable.
  10. They also help ease the nerves of the bride and groom.

So, if you are planning a wedding in the Sydney area, contact celebrant PhilipHollandto complete your perfect day.

Why Hunter Valley Parks & Gardens are Becoming the Most Romantic Setting for Weddings

The Hunter Valley has long been a favorite region for weddings due to its rich greenery, breathtaking views, stunning wineries and variety of parks and gardens. This is true, not just for those who live in NSW, but throughout Australiaas people travel from all over the country to celebrate their special day here.

Hunter Valley Gardens is a popular choice, offering up many unique locations for wedding ceremonies. Just some of the locations include an ‘oriental’ garden with a Japanese inspired theme, the ‘sunken’ garden with a 10 metre cascading waterfall, a lake and rotunda location and more. With so many different areas throughout the gardens, there are plenty of spectacular spots to capture those ever-important wedding photos.

Kirkton Park Hunter Valley is another wedding hot spot, offering some truly exquisite backdrops that really showcase the beauty of the Hunter Valley. The Manor Garden offers views of the rolling country side and a decorative fountain, ‘Between the Urns’ offers a backdrop of the breathtaking Broken Ranges and ‘Wisteria Walk’ is a perfect in Spring when the vines and flowers are in seasonal bloom.

If you’re looking for something a little more ‘bespoke’, Hanging Tree Wines is one of few venues throughout the Hunter Valley that oozes a relaxed, rustic feel, ideal for the more ‘chilled’ couple. It has an authentic ‘country’ vibe with the inclusion of wineries, rolling hills and a gorgeous pond, teeming with ducks as a spectacular backdrop to your ceremony or photos. You can even have your photos taken at their beautiful, rustic homesteads.

If you are looking for a trusted Celebrant for your wedding, commitment ceremony or renewal of vows, look no further than Phillip Holland, based in the Sydney. Get in touch today!


What to Consider When Planning a Beach Side Wedding

If the idea of saying ‘I do’ to the person you love with a backdrop of the sun setting beyond a vast ocean paints a picture-perfect location to commit to the man or woman of your dreams, then a beach wedding might just be for you! But before you start sending out your invites, there are a few important factors to consider.

Firstly, the time of year you decide to marry will determine how ideal a beach wedding will be. As a rule, winter should be off the table. While the day is all about you and celebrating your truly special commitment, the comfort of your guests should also be a priority. People love to dress up for weddings and sitting on a beach in the dead of winter can be quite uncomfortable, especially when many your guests may be in dresses!

The time of day you choose for the ceremony is important as it affects things like temperature, sun glare, the position of your seating and the quality of your photos. Think about the time of day in relation to the position of the sun. Facing your guests towards the sun will result in a lot of squinting and/or the addition of sunglasses which will show up in your treasured photos.

When it comes to any outdoor wedding, you are at the mercy of the weather which here in Australia, we know can be quite unpredictable. So, make sure you have a backup plan in place if things go south and select a photographer/videographer who is experienced in outdoor weddings, particularly beach wedding as they will understand the intricacies of correct positioning and lighting.

For an experienced and caring celebrant who brings a personal touch to each and every wedding, contact Sydney based civil celebrant, Phillip Holland today.

October’s Finest Flowers Ready for Your Spring Wedding

With so many different varieties, choosing your wedding flowers can be a confusing task. The good news is, if you’re getting married in Spring, it’s the perfect time of year to get your hands on some gorgeous flowers, right when they’re in bloom!

Have you heard of the ‘Blushing Bride’ flower? Even given name, it’s not the most obvious choice of wedding flower so it still gives you that sense of individuality on your special day. It’s cream coloured petals and fluffy, pink centre gives it a real feminine look- perfect for a bride and her bridesmaids.

Daisies are at their most beautiful in Spring and come in a range of different colours so you can match them perfectly with your dresses and colour theme. White daisies are great to mix with other, colourful flowers and are easily incorporated into any bouquet.

Lily of the valley is a simple, classy and elegant flower that reach their peak at the very start October. You can’t go wrong with a simple white flower. Famously used in Kate Middleton’s bouquet, their unique, bell-shaped blooms are a beautiful addition to any wedding.

For a bride who needs flowers that can stand up to a puffy wedding dress, snowball viburnum flowers are perfect! The name is derived from their snowball-like appearance and the volume in a bouquet of viburnum flowers makes it a beautiful addition to a bridal party.

For brides that want a distinctive yet beautiful bouquet, Anemone flowers are just that. Their eye-catching, dark centre create a sense of drama in contrast to their soft, light coloured petals. They are quite simply one of the most stunning Spring flowers available!

Contact Phillip Holland today for a Sydney based civil Celebrant you can count on.

Australia Takes a Closer Step Towards Marriage Equality for Same Sex Couples

Australia has recently taken its first significant step towards legalizing marriage for same-sex couples with the introduction of a postal plebiscite.

While a plebiscite might not have been everyone’s first choice in dealing with this sensitive issue, it’s a step in the right direction and gives every Australian the opportunity to have their say.

The good news is that leading up to the vote so far, many online polls are showing that the majority of Australians are in favor of marriage equality. While we can’t say for sure what will happen, we are hopeful this will be reflected in the votes and Australia can finally catch up with other countries where gay marriage is legal, such as Canada and New Zealand.

As we look towards a future with marriage equality, it’s exciting to imagine just how many same-sex couples will take the leap. Hundreds of thousands of gay couples can finally begin to put plans in place for the wedding they have always dreamed of.

This means picking out dresses and suits, booking venues, hiring photographers, sampling cakes and declaring your love for one another in front of your friends and family, just as opposite-sex couples have been able to enjoy for over 100 years. This will also see the wedding industry boom in Australia which will have a positive effect on our economy. Just another reason to vote ‘yes’ in the upcoming postal vote in case you needed one!

If you are in a same-sex relationship and wish to get married here in Australia once it becomes legal, get in touch with Sydney based Phillip Holland.

Phillip has many years’ experience in both weddings and commitment ceremonies for gay couples and can help your wedding dreams come true on your special day.