Congratulations on your engagement! Now you've got a wedding to plan and where will you start? My advice - as an unashamed romantic - is to start with each other.
They say it's true love when you can absolutely be yourselves with each other - when you know your partner adores and celebrates every inch of you - just as you are. If you feel safe, known and loved when you're together, let's make sure that's exactly how you feel on your wedding day too. Don't let anyone else's ideas or rules mess with the magic and make you feel awkward, fake or like this isn't really you.
If you want your wedding ceremony to be all about the two of you and your love for each other; if you want to exchange vows that reflect your love story and your plans for the future; and for your whole ceremony to feel as if it was written just for you, then hurrah! You're in the right place.
Work with me and your wedding ceremony really will be written just for you! It's that simple. You're the ones doing the vowing but I do solemnly swear to you that I'll write every word of your ceremony just for you and I never shall copy and paste!
We'll meet - you can decide if it's over tea and biscuits or gin and tonics - and we'll talk. You can tell me all your hopes and ideas. Tell me about the best weddings you've ever been to - and the worst. Tell me about your family politics, the stories that'll make your friends howl with laughter and the secret way to win over your fiercest of aunties.
Whatever you're hoping for, I'll take the time to understand what the two of you want from your wedding day and to give it to you with bells on.
We celebrants are not registrars. We can't give you your legal marriage certificate (although we can talk you through the quickest and cheapest ways to get the legal side of marriage signed off as nothing more than pre-wedding admin) but that leaves us free to follow no-one's rules but yours. So you can have your wedding absolutely anywhere - on a beach, in a forest, up a mountain or somewhere as simple and intimate as your own home. Choose a celebrant and the only people making the rules are the two of you.
It would be the most massive honour for me to be your celebrant. You can find out a lot more about me on my website - including up to date prices. And check out my Instagram feed too - that's where I go to post pictures of my cats and pontificate about how much I love my job (especially when I'm putting off doing my accounts or I'm sick of trying to get my printer to work).
Do give me a call or pop me an email if you'd like to know more. I'm always happy to chat on the phone or meet up with no obligation. I live in Cheshire but I'll travel across the UK and abroad to wherever a wedding takes me. I can't wait to hear from you.
In the meantime: hold on to this moment - and each other.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Do you do LGBTQ+ weddings?
You mean weddings? Hell yes! #youdontneedtoaskhere
What's the difference between a registrar and a celebrant?
A registrar is a government official who performs legal marriage ceremonies in licensed venues. They must use specific contractual wording and they cannot allow any spiritual or religious content in their marriage ceremonies. A celebrant is a very different beast to a government official! A celebrant is a writer, a listener and a performer - trained in the art of ceremony - who will get to know you before your wedding and then create a unique ceremony, just for you - from scratch. Because a celebrant-led wedding ceremony isn’t legally binding, if you choose a celebrant you are absolutely free to do whatever you want (so long as it’s legal and your venue allows it).
Is this a real wedding ceremony?
A good celebrant-led wedding is as real as it gets because you won’t speak a single word or make a single vow that doesn’t come directly from your own hearts. But it’s not a legal ceremony. Most couples pop to their local register office a day or two before the big day to complete the paperwork. In my local register office, in Cheshire East, the fee for this is £50. You can do it in a few minutes, wearing jeans and t-shirts.
How much does it cost?
My 2019 fee for a wedding ceremony anywhere in the UK is £950.My fee for destination weddings anywhere in Europe is £1,450.For destinations further afield, just ask for a quote. All prices are fully inclusive of expenses and travel.
Are you a humanist?
No. A celebrant is a bit different from a Humanist because we’re truly independent. Our ceremonies are about your beliefs; not ours. So, whereas Humanists won’t include anything spiritual or religious in their ceremonies, an independent celebrant will write a ceremony that reflects your beliefs. Many celebrant ceremonies are completely non-religious but we’re also happy to include music, poetry, prayers and rituals from any religion or spiritual belief system - if that’s what you want.
Can we have a handfasting or a sand ceremony?
Absolutely! There are dozens of rituals and traditions from around the world you can weave into your wedding ceremony - from jumping the broom to lighting a unity candle or breaking bread together. We can also create new rituals - that are unique to you. Talk to me if there’s a part of your story that you’d like to bring into your ceremony with an original ceremonial act. This could be something as simple as lighting a candle to represent a loved one who can’t share your day with you; or it could be something really innovative and different that makes your ceremony feel more memorable and personal.
Can we write our own vows?
Absolutely. There are loads of different ways to bring your own vows into your wedding ceremony and you're in charge. If you want to do it all on your own, that's brilliant. If you'd like me to help in any way, I'd love to.
What's included in your fee?
Everything! Included in your wedding fee, you will get: UNLIMITED CONTACT WITH ME: That's usually a mixture of face-to-face or Skype meetings, phone calls and emails. My lines of communication are always open, so you can share your wedding ideas and vision with me and I can really get to know the two of you. This is the magic that makes a celebrant wedding so special and personal! The contact continues once I've started writing your ceremony script: you'll see every draft and if you want to make any changes or you come up with a new idea, you can have as many rewrites as it takes. Nothing about my service is limited or rationed, because you only get one chance to get your wedding ceremony just right. A UNIQUE, BESPOKE CEREMONY SCRIPT - WRITTEN JUST FOR YOU: Your ceremony will be fully bespoke. It can be any length, any style, any format and you can include as many ceremony enhancements as you like (no extra charges for handfastings, unity candles, sand ceremonies etc or for me to help you create your own unique vows). Every ceremony I write is different - my style is really your style - but the added value I bring is that I am a real storyteller; so if you'd like me to talk about how you met or your proposal story or the moment when you knew you'd found The One - with my background in creative writing, theatre and radio, I will tell your love story like nobody else could. AN EXQUISITE RECORD OF YOUR CEREMONY:When we work together to create your unique ceremony, we'll talk about what little keepsakes you'd like to help you remember your day. After the hard mental work of writing story-led ceremonies, it gives me great pleasure to hand-make beautiful stationery for all my couples. You'll receive your whole ceremony script, hand-bound in a bespoke, hardback book and, if they're appropriate for your ceremony, I'll also make other keepsakes such as vow books for each of you or a bespoke wedding certificate (not a legal document - but rather a beautiful, commemorative certificate that you can sign at your ceremony and frame afterwards). VENUE VISITS AND WEDDING REHEARSALS: I'm always happy to come and meet couples at their chosen venue and/or to hold a wedding rehearsal if that's necessary (not everyone wants or needs one, but they're a good idea if you're going for something complicated with lots of movement/speakers/interactivity). YOUR CELEBRANT, THERE BY YOUR SIDE, ON YOUR WEDDING DAY: When the big day arrives, I'll be there early to make sure everything is set up perfectly and every detail is double checked. If your venue doesn't provide a speaker system, I'll bring one. I will be absolutely present for you on your wedding day; I'll welcome your guests, make sure everyone knows where they're meant to be and - when we're ready to go - I'll lead your service with warmth, confidence and professionalism.