Here is a selection of Q&As from Your North East 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
To view more expert advice on a different topic, please select one from the list below.
All that jazz
Q. I want to surprise my husband with a jazz singer at our wedding, but I'm a bit clueless myself! What should I be looking out for to make sure I'm booking the right person for the job?
A. Paul Skerritt says: With there being so many styles and variations of jazz music, I would probably broaden the search criteria by looking for a singer that does swing as well as jazz. Why? These two styles go hand in hand perfectly, and open up many more options when it comes to choosing a singer. You also need to decide if you want to go with a solo singer with backing tracks – this is the more budget friendly option – or stretch to having an accompanist, such as a piano player, to add extra ambience.
I'd then start with a good old Google search, gathering a shortlist of three or four singers who you like the sound of. Watch their showreels and listen to any recorded music they have. Don't forget, professional singers will travel, so don't be afraid to enquire about a singer who lives elsewhere in the UK! Their fee may be a bit more, but if you like the sound of them, it'll be 100% worth it.
Paul Skerritt, Paul Skerritt Music
Now that's entertainment
Q. We're looking at booking a wedding entertainer, but we're worried about booking someone online that we've never met. Do you have any suggestions?
A. Nicola Sim says: Some businesses on Facebook allow clients to leave reviews and have testimonials on their website from past couples, which are both important to read.
Most entertainers have videos or recordings of their performances prepared as examples of their work. I have a YouTube channel I link prospective clients to, which I've found very helpful to them. Some companies also do in-person meetings, which is worth checking if you're worried about booking someone online.
Many entertainers also do shows and have residentials in venues; check to see if they have any shows around your local area as this is an excellent opportunity to get see them live.
Another thing to put your mind at ease is if another business has recommended the company, which often means they're worth booking.
Nicola Sim, Nicola Sim Pianist
Q. We're planning our wedding entertainment, but we're a bit worried about booking someone online that we've never met. Do you have any suggestions?
A. Ray Snowden says: Picking your wedding entertainment should be a fun and enjoyable experience. Try to give yourselves a few months before the special day to work out the type of entertainment you want, meet suppliers and make that final decision.
It's great to meet people in person, but the last few months have highlighted the benefits of virtual catch-ups. It's often hard to have a decent chat at a busy wedding fair, so it's always good to catch up on FaceTime, WhatsApp or over Zoom. Here you can ask all the questions you want and get to know the team more. Listen to the advice from the professionals because many entertainers have performed at different venues and have lots of experience. They'll happily share what might or might not work for your day.
Make sure to ask newlyweds for their recommendations. The entertainment world is ruled by word of mouth and if someone comes highly recommended, they'll most probably be good! Ask friends, people you know, your venue, other nearlyweds, wedding professionals and of course, use the internet.
Think about whether the company's appropriate for your setting, audience and the atmosphere you're after. You might have guests in nappies to their nineties on the day, but the evening may be different.
There are many entertainment options such as music in all forms, magicians, caricaturists, jugglers, balloon artists, children's entertainers, photo booths and more.
Top Tip... Make sure the company you pick has Public Liability Insurance and any electrical equipment is PAT tested.
Ray Snowden, Ray's Piano
When it's time for you look for local businesses to help you with your wedding, take a look at our advertisements below. Most will have links to their own websites. These advertisements are updated regularly so please revisit often and mention Your North East Wedding when making any enquiries.