Meet Emma, Wedding Consultant and Editor of The Promise NI
If time is not on your side, or perhaps there's just a small element of your wedding you really need a little inspiration for. Planning a wedding from abroad or just (dare I say it) not really into planning a wedding?!
Q - Hi Emma, can you introduce yourself to our readers?
A - Hello all! Thank you Stacey for inviting me to add my thoughts to your blog. It’s strange being on the other side of the desk as I’m usually the one inviting wedding experts to contribute!
I am Emma Smith creator and editor of Northern Ireland's only independent wedding blog, The Promise. I began the blog way back in December 2013, so we have just celebrated five years of sharing local inspiration, suppliers and real life weddings. I started The Promise as a creative outlet for me after going freelance from my magazine editor role, but also with the hope that I could highlight everything wonderful about NI weddings, and I’m pleased to say we have featured some really amazing wedding days and ideas!
Q - You’ve recently branched out to helping couples directly, can you tell us a little more about that?
A - Yes, as well as the blog, I’ve recently started my own wedding consultancy service. My favourite part of my job as magazine editor was always the photo shoot planning. I loved the creative process, coming up with the concept, sourcing suppliers and arranging and booking all the elements - I may have been told to get my head out of the clouds a few times! I’m a natural planner and believe in a to-do list to solve all stress related events!
Together with my decade (plus!) of working amongst the best wedding suppliers in the country, and my passion for a good planning-sesh, I’m super excited for the wedding projects I have been asked to help with since I launched the service. From helping couples work out and allocate their budget to sourcing bridal suppliers, and even planning full wedding days, I am completely honoured these couples have chosen me to assist in the biggest day of their lives.
Q - What do you love most about the wedding industry?
A - If you’re a bride-to-be planning her wedding day (and I’m guessing many of you are), let me just let you know how very lucky you are! The talent pool in Northern Ireland, and throughout Ireland, is incredible and no-matter your style or budget there is a highly recommended wedding supplier out there to help you. The magic they create is the best part of the local industry, seriously they are so inspiring and dedicated to create the best for every single bride.
Q - What are your top five wedding planning tips for newly engaged couples?
1. Set a budget and prioritise. I know, it’s not romantic but there’s no point planning a day you simply can’t afford. It’s easy to say ‘but it’s the biggest day of your life, spend, spend, spend’ but in reality unless you’ve discovered the illusive money tree you should plan within your means, or at least with a plan of how to save for it.
2. Be you. It’s easy to say not to worry about what your guests think of your choices, but it’s your style and choices, they’re the privileged ones being invited! There is a very thin line however when it comes to being considerate to family and friends, if they’re offering advice or their thoughts be kind, listen to them. No one wants to fall out with their mum over a wedding decision.
3. Use blogs, magazines and other weddings to gather information and discover what you like. We share a weekly real wedding on the blog and couples love the inspiration they can gather from them.
4. Include your other half, even if he sits on the fence when it’s decision time!
5. Don’t scrimp on photography and videography! This is my pet peeve and one I really urge couples to listen too, very seriously. No, your aunt’s friend cannot successfully capture your day, assess your budget, do your homework on the style of photography you love and take it from there. Always choose the best you can afford to capture your day, after all the images and film are what you come back to time and time again in the years to come.
And one last one, be sensible about your reception location! There’s nothing more off-putting for a wedding guest than a two hour trek across the country from ceremony to reception.
Images: Kat Mervyn Photography
Hope that helps inspire you!