August 16, 2013

New blog location

I’ve moved out of these digs and into new ones, find my latest wedding blog posts here

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May 6, 2013

Kicking Off Wedding Season

The weather here in Beautiful British Columbia has been fantastic, and we at the Inn at Laurel Point, Victoria BC are prepping for another fab wedding season. We have been meeting with couples over menu tastings and going over all things wedding.


I thought I’d take this opportunity to share one of my wedding preseason rituals. Before the first couple walks down our waterfront aisle, I watch this video. It always makes me smile. The video isn’t professionally shot, or choreographed - it just features regular people willing to be silly and have fun to celebrate their friends’ union.

As stressful as wedding planning can be, when the big day arrives it is so important to take it all in and have fun.

Watch: JK Wedding Entrance Video

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January 24, 2013

Strut February 2nd & 3rd at Victoria’s Wedding Walk


We at Inn at Laurel Point are thrilled to be one of the many venues participating in Victoria’s first Wedding Walk. The Victoria Wedding Walk was designed by the Victoria Wedding Collective (VWC) to offer an annual fun, authentic showcase of the top wedding professionals, suppliers and ceremony experts along with wedding venues, décor and food ideas.


Our Wedding Experts will be in our magnificent Terrace Ballroom from 11am-5pm, Saturday February 2nd to meet you and answer all your wedding questions. Like  “What’s all this noise about setting a budget" or "Who’s this Pinterest guy my fiancée is spending all her time with?”

So zip up your boots and strut on down!

We have your “something blue” and you might even spot me!

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January 3, 2013

Wedding Shows, you gotta go

We’re off to Wedding Fair in Vancouver BC as exhibitors and hope to see you there!

If you can get yourself to a wedding show in the early stages of planning, go and bring your mum. Not only is it great bonding time, it will be as good as renting a time machine to bring your mum to the present if not the future of wedding trends. She might be surprised to see that today’s bridesmaids (for the most part) like their dresses, do not wear coordinating hats, and sleeves are optional.


(Sweet heavens that picture is something else!)

In 19___ [insert your parents’ wedding year here] couples hired bands and after a stroll through a wedding show, your mum will see that it is more common to work with a DJ now. Your mum will be brought up to speed on all things wedding in one afternoon, and you’ll probably be able to avoid the “Don’t you want to wear my wedding headband” conversation now that she knows what’s In.

Wedding Headband

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December 5, 2012

Who Pays for What (traditionally)

It never hurts to know what the traditional take on a wedding topic is, before you blow the doors off it. Here is what “traditionally” the Bride & Groom’s respective sides looked after on the wedding budget spreadsheet. Thoughts? How would you divide it up?

  • Bride’s Side
  1. Bride’s gown & accessories
  2. Ceremony site costs
  3. Flowers (ceremony, reception & bridal attendants)
  4. Groom’s ring
  5. Stationary
  6. Music
  7. Photography & videography
  8. Reception venue & dinner
  9. Rental & decor items for ceremony & reception
  10. Wedding consultant/planner
  11. Bridal party transportation (ceremony & reception)
  • Optional Items
  1. Bride & attendants accommodations
  2. Gift to the groom

  • Groom’s Side
  1. Bride’s engagement ring and wedding band
  2. Marriage officiant
  3. Marriage license
  4. Liquor
  5. Flowers (bride’s bouquet, corsages & boutonnieres for honoured family members)
  6. Rehearsal dinner
  7. Groom’s attendants transportation (ceremony)
  8. Honeymoon
  • Optional Items
  1. Groom’s attendants accommodations
  2. Gift to the Bride

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November 28, 2012

Rich bride, poor bride –

Maybe you can be more than one or the other… how about setting a realistic budget and living happily ever after?

On average couples spend $27,000 on their wedding and whether that sounds reasonable or preposterous, in my experience a budget needs to be made. You can draw it up on the back of a cocktail napkin, or draft a spreadsheet – just make one.

The basics are simple; you need to know how much money you have to spend.

Are your parents & relatives contributing, or are you on your own? If you have to borrow money to pay for your wedding, don’t take on more debt than you can pay it back in a year!

Have your benefactors list their top two priorities (what is most important). This is key because often arguments appear to be about money, when they are really about priorities. If you do reach a stalemate, revisit the priority list and if the matter is not in your top 2, save your energy.

Once you know what you have to spend and what’s important, grab that cocktail napkin and list the items you’ll need for the wedding (see below) include a column for estimated cost, actual cost, deposit and a final column for notes. Always keep a running tally to be sure you are on track and factor in a 5-10% cushion for items you may had over looked.

Embrace the budget because it not only keeps your spending in check, it is a great organizational tool that will help track what still needs to be done.

One more thing, you have a lifetime together, let’s not spend it repaying the wedding debt racked up!

Next Post: I’m tackling politics!

*Here is an example of what portion of a couple’s budget is used on the following:

40% Reception (site, food & drink)

8% each Wedding Rings & Photography

6% Flowers

5% each Dress & Videography

4% Reception Music

3% Groom’s Formal Wear

2% each Hair & Makeup for bride & bridal party, Invitations & Stationary, Ceremony Music, Spiritual Ceremony Site, Wedding Cake, Transportation

1% Favours

*Breakdown courtesy of The Wedding Book – The Big Book for Your Big Day, by Mindy Weiss and Lisabeth Levine

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Religion, Politics, Money and Weddings?

There are a few topics that shouldn’t be discussed in polite conversation - religion, politics and money to name a few, and lucky for engaged couples these doozies get to be tackled all at once during wedding planning.

Cautious posturing with family & friends will exercise your political skills

Subjects of religion may be tabled when selecting a ceremony site or composing your vows

Though all matters can be thorny, the subject of money can be a recurring character throughout the planning and I think we should grapple with it first.

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October 29, 2012

Let them eat candy corn!

For two wedding seasons now, we have served breakfast for dinner. Why you might ask? It turns out that breakfast is the couple’s favorite meal, and really who doesn’t love an amazing benny?!

Aura Breakfast

So it stands to reason that if couples incorporate special foods into their weddings, they would also consider incorporating their most hallowed holidays… like Halloween?!

Maybe you don’t want to serve your guests pancakes at 7pm, but if Halloween is your favorite holiday then bring on the fun size candy bars!

This is the part of the blog where I’d tell you about an amazing Halloween inspired wedding that took place here at the Inn at Laurel Point and share fantastic photos, well guess what - we need to have a Halloween wedding!

Though it would take more than my usual Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo to pull off a Halloween wedding for 2012, Off Beat Bride's amazing Monday Montage blog post will have to tie us over until October 31, 2013. So grab the Halloween candy you bought to “give to the kids” that supposedly knock on your 15th floor, doorman secured condo and enjoy! (oops that might just be me)

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October 18, 2012

This Sunday October 21st, Inn at Laurel Point’s Wedding Experts will be making an appearance at the Victoria Wedding Show. Being the Rock Stars that they are, the ladies will be available to sign autographs, but more importantly they hope to speak to you about your wedding plans.

Stop by our amazing booth, enjoy a tasty treat prepared by Pastry Chef April Iverson (she made desserts for Wills & Kate you know!), and gab with our blinged out Wedding Experts – you’ll be dazzled by their sparkly personality!


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October 11, 2012

Congratulations on your engagement! When’s the wedding?!

I’ve noticed that no sooner have couples announced their exciting engagement news, they are immediately faced with the question ”Have you set a date?”

I’m not sure if it is thanks to Hollywood, the press or popular belief, but we at Inn at Laurel Point often meet newly engaged couples who are under the impression that they are already behind in the planning.

I am here to impart my wisdom on the subject, and tell you brides to keep flaunting your newest piece of jewellery, share your happy news, and fret not.

Blake Lively's Engagement Ring

People ask about your wedding date because they want to appear interested & excited for you both (though they may be mentally searching through their wardrobe selecting their fabulous outfit – maybe that’s just me).

Unless you are set on a specific date that cannot be changed, breathe easy. You have plenty of time to plan your wedding big or small.

Your date sets the foundation for the rest of your wedding planning and you may need to consider the availability of your officiant, venue & photographer during the selection process. Also, your budget will be affected by the date but more on dollars and sense later…

In short, don’t let the question of when turn your excitement into panic. We have planned weddings with a guest list of 150 in two months and in less than a week, helped a couple and 20 of their closest friends celebrate in style.


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