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Tips about wedding arches

Two weddings in a row the focal structure nearly undid the brides’ happiness. Both were outdoor structures, both had floral work attached.

The first structure the bride ordered by description sight unseen. On the good side, it was very sturdy, well-proportioned in the outdoor space and easy for the florist to dress. When the bride saw it she cried - not what she’d envisaged.

The second structure ‘the boys’ put up a couple of hours before the wedding. It was in front of a 150 year old Sequoia. The wooden poles, that formed two tripods, proved too short and flimsy to support a cross bar with a heavy macramé drape. And the flowers and foliage weren't well secured and added a lot of weight. It was very small in front of the tree and too low for the tall bride and groom.

A constant draught under the tree saw the arch collapse as the first guests arrived. The groom was ‘steaming’. The florist was gone. There was no gear, nails, screws, wire, no anything to resurrect it. The cross bar and drape were ditched. Guests rallied and erected the tripods and threw over some of the floral work. It had to suffice. The tree was magnificent in its own right.

This bold tree makes a fantastic focal point for a marriage ceremony. The heart, chandelier and carefully draped and weighted tassles are beautifully proportioned.

Tips about arches, squares, circles and chuppah’s…

  • In the outdoors consider proportion and the elements.
  • Unless hiring, carefully plan the design, materials and construction. Have gear handy if running repairs are needed.
  • Anchor the structure well - bricks, logs, metal plates and pegs can be disguised.
  • How are you going to dress it? Who’s going to do that? 
  • Install the structure for your rehearsal, do flowers and foliage on the day.
  • Is the arch capable of going indoors if the weather turns iffy or have you an alternative.
  • No such thing as ‘it'll do, only needs to be there for 30 minutes’ – it’s your wedding day.

For the record, the second bride was amazingly calm. When all was revealed she had eyes only for her man.

Best wishes for your wedding day.

Jo x

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