Five top tips for planning your civil partnership

As you celebrate your engagement, both you and your partner will most likely be on cloud nine. Having decided to spend the rest of your lives together, it seems an abundance of joyous, shared experiences are to come… first up? Your wedding day!

This is where the fun really starts; as you begin to plan your special day, the thought of beautiful bouquets, delicious food and loving guests will certainly leave you dreaming of your perfect ceremony. However, if you’re not exactly the most organised event planner, this might not be your idea of fun… rather, the pressure that accompanies a wedding might feel a little overwhelming.

There’s a never-ending supply of advice about weddings surrounding brides and grooms, but what about when there are two grooms or two brides? There will always be questions surrounding ‘who wears the dress’ and joint stag/hen dos. However, with a little help along the way, the process of putting together your big day needn’t be any more stressful or confusing.

Kelly Hunter, Events and Catering Manager from Essex-based wedding venue Rivenhall Oaks, offers her top tips for planning a same-sex wedding… yes, it really can be simple!

Wear what makes you happy

When it comes to same-sex weddings, there really are no rules. Whether you’re looking for two dresses, two suits or neither, the most important thing is that you feel comfortable.

Wear an outfit that reflects your personality, coordinating on small details such as ties, colour schemes or jewellery. If your outfit makes you feel confident, nothing else matters.

(Chrysostomos Galathris)

Joint vs separate? There’s no need to choose!

When planning your stag and hen dos, you might feel pressure to host joint parties. However, there really is no right answer!

If you and your partner have different ideas of your ideal do, host separate events and don’t feel bad about it; you can always bring both groups together later in the evening, or celebrate entirely separately, this will only add to your excitement in the run up to your big day!

Forget tradition

Rules are made for breaking and no one can tell you what your wedding ‘should’ look like. Your big day should be the most personal event you’ll ever plan, encompassing the love you share with your partner. If you want to host your wedding in a wildly unique venue, who’s to tell you that you’re wrong?!

As you organise the smaller details, like the throwing of a bouquet, wedding dinner and more, unleash your creativity and forget norms. If you both want to throw a bouquet together – go for it! Fancy a do-it-yourself dessert table? Satisfy your sweet tooth and follow your heart.

(Leah Kelley)

Remember what matters

The purpose of a wedding is to mark a romantic, life-long commitment. Don’t waste precious time worrying about unexpected hiccups or delays! Perfecting your table settings and preparing a delicious tasting menu (whilst ideal, of course) isn’t all that matters.

Remember the meaning behind your big day and enjoy every moment in all its glory… In ten years’ time you won’t be angry about the late serving of your canapes or creased tie, no, you’ll lovingly recall the joy that blossomed from your budding relationship.

Use your vendors!

Wedding planners, event organisers and caterers are all there to support you through your big day, so make the most of their abilities and connections!

If you have a question about civil ceremony protocols or certificates, simply ask. The more you delegate, the less stress you’ll have to contend with on the day.

For more information about Rivenhall Oaks as a venue for your civil ceremony, visit

Written by QWEERIST editor

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