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Spanish Fiesta in the UK

Destination weddings at home

I love destination weddings! I’ve planned them in Italy, Greece and Spain – in fact, I planned my own Spanish wedding, before the dreaded COVID-19 reared its ugly head. July 2020 was marked out in my calendar as ‘Party of the year’, but the world changed and so did our plans. However, that doesn’t mean the end of destination weddings for our UK brides, with a little bit of imagination and some incredible suppliers, we’re able to create some iconic destination weddings in local UK venues.

When I planned my wedding in Nerja, Malaga, I knew the colours and textures of my décor, the fragrances I wanted to fill the air and the atmosphere for my guests. My head was bursting with ideas, and even my Pinterest board was getting out of control, so I put this to good use and designed a Spanish Fiesta shoot. I have since had several enquires from couples looking to recreate a similar look without the additional uncertainty of travel at the moment. Here are my top tips for destination wedding vibes in your UK wedding

1. Colour

When you think of your dream wedding destination, what colours immediately pop into your head? For Spain, I think terracotta, pinks and oranges with lots of olive green. For Italy I think creamy whites and Sicilian yellows, and France is romantic pinks and creams. You might have been on holiday there and remember the colours in the street at your favourite restaurant, or simply seen pictures online that you love. You can incorporate colour into your day in so many ways – from table linen to florals, glassware to clothing. One of my favourite trends at the moment are ribbons, brides are adding them to their bouquets and table decorations, and I think they can add amazing colour and texture to your décor.

2. Language

Using the language of your destination in signage or stationery throughout your day can add a subtle romantic touch. A wedding I planned last year was for a couple who got engaged in Italy. They wanted to bring the Italian Riviera vibe to their day, so they had their wedding stationary printed in Italian. It looked absolutely beautiful and created a talking point for their guests. They were all at the tables trying to guess what the stationery said, and testing each other’s pronunciation. The room was filled with laughter and removed any awkward silences between guests.

3. Tradition

Every country has their own traditions, and that is no different when it comes to weddings. Find out if your destination country marks weddings in a special way, or has traditions dating back over the years. In Spain, they use las arras matrimoniales (wedding coins in English) in the ceremony. They are 13 coins often gifted from the couples parents, which are blessed and presented to the bride as a symbol of the grooms commitment to care for her and their home. In Italy, it is considered bad luck to wear any form of gold jewellery except from your wedding band, and many brides also wear green the night before their wedding for good luck.

Whatever the tradition, it’s important you understand the history and meaning behind it, so do your research and make sure that if you want to include a tradition, it is done so in a respectful and meaningful way.

4. Flowers

This might not be the easiest one to do, depending on the season and how easily they can be obtained, but florals can carry so much impact. You could include the national flower, or a traditional wedding flower. In Spain they use red carnations and orange blossom, and in France it’s the Iris. Its these subtle undertones that others may not initially notice that give a nod to your destination country. Not only can you include colours and textures here, but also tradition and fragrance. Fragrance often gets forgotten about, but it is such an important aspect to your wedding day. One whiff of oranges and in my head I’m sipping chilled Sangria in a little tapas bar on the beach.


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