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Here is a selection of Q&As from Your London Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to firstname.lastname@example.org
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From the music to the booze, our experts advise on the elements that make a reception to remember
Q. We love the idea of a live band but we're worried that we'll lose guests from the dancefloor between songs – any advice on creating the ultimate party atmosphere?
A. Tim Owen says: Tim says: There are a few professional bands out there who actually medley each song together throughout the set. Bands like this are rare, as it requires so much rehearsal and professionalism. Find a band that provides lights and a really good PA and ask to see live video of them to check how they sound. Tell them within your initial enquiry that you want each song to start immediately after the previous song, with no gaps. If they don't medley each song together, they might still be able to minimise the gaps to almost nothing. The next tactic of keeping people on the dancefloor is to minimise their other options. Have most of your tables removed from the party room and book a venue where the bar is in the same room as the band; this alone can make or break a party. The third thing to get right is the time; if the band is on too early, people will feel inhibited and shy. Wait until they've had a few drinks and it gets dark. Have the band start at around 9pm and you'll be onto a winner!
Q. Our wedding party is very mixed with guests aged from four to 90 – how can we get them all on the dancefloor; does a universally popular playlist exist?
A. Elisabeth Chidi says: Elisabeth says: It's to be expected that your wedding will be a collection of family and friends from differing age groups, and therefore it'll be difficult to cater to everyone's musical tastes but, if you aim to choose a list of songs that the majority of your guests would at least be familiar with, you can create a great party atmosphere.
Below, are a few tips to help:
1) Remember that for the most part, the music choice should be something that you – the bride and groom – want to hear on your special day; use this as your main musical inspiration.
2) Add to this a selection of current pop hits plus a few songs from each era of music, i.e '60s/'70s, '80s/'90s and the naughties – think Motown hits, ABBA sing-alongs and Rihanna.
3) Throw in a few popular rock anthems, for example Queen or Bon Jovi, and in no time, you've built a playlist that has something for everyone. If this sounds like a little too much to take on, consider relieving your stress by hiring a live band with years of experience entertaining guests of all ages.
Q. We've booked a venue with no corkage charge and we're keen to keep the wine flowing all night – but what should we be stocking up on?
A. Sam Tyson says: Sam says: Knowing which wines to have at your wedding can be one of the trickiest decisions to make. Our advice, opt for crowdpleasers and everyone will be happy – here are the drinks that are trending now:
1) Rosé: while many couples just offer their guests a red or white, the growing popularity of rosé is encouraging couples to choose a third bottle. I'd suggest the elegant, sparkling Hindleap Rosé from the Bluebell Vineyard Estate in East Sussex.
2) Punch: when it comes to winter weddings, we anticipate the rising popularity of punches. They create a fabulous talking point and can be made and served in bulk, making them affordable and quirky.
3) Self-service: more and more couples are choosing to create selfservice bars, beer taps and 70s-style cocktail bars at their weddings – a trend set to rise in 2020.
4) Sustainable: people are thinking more about the world around them, and that also comes into play when they're organising their wedding days. Couples are choosing wines that didn't travel hundreds of air miles to get there, instead selecting English or European options.
5) Farewell Champagne: while Champagne is wonderful and luxurious, many couples are looking for other options that are more sustainable and unique. I anticipate English sparkling wines to continue to rise in popularity, along with cava, Crémant (French sparkling wine made just outside of Champagne) or sparkling Riesling from Germany.
Q. Help! I'm clueless about music – and I don't even know whether to plump for a band or a DJ, let alone how to hire a good act – how can I narrow down the options?
A. Becky Carewe-Jeffries says: Becky says: Don't panic! There are expert agencies out there who have already done all the hard work for you. Choosing the music for your wedding day is easy when you have people you can trust providing you with the best options, so you can just sit back and pick the music that gets you excited.
A DJ is the perfect choice for a smaller venue or if you're limited by budget. You could also opt for a DJ Live option, which means you would have live musicians – a vocalist and a saxophonist, for example – playing alongside a DJ. This unusual act helps to capture a nightclub's aura and the infectious energy of live musicians.
Live bands, meanwhile, are a sure-fire way to get people of all ages up and dancing on your big day, one of our acts is even interactive meaning the musicians are in among your guests, dancing the night away with them.