Planning your exhibition

Here at Silverstream Retreat we have been busy planning our exciting new Wedding Expo. Between 29 August and 4 September we’ll be down at Westfield mall in Lower Hutt promoting the expo and all the great things Silverstream Retreat have to offer.

For those of you that have already booked an exhibition space at the expo we thought we’d use our experience planning the event to help you with the planning of your exhibition.

  1. Planning The success of your exhibition will depend on the amount of time you spend preparing, not only what your exhibition will look like but the objective of the exhibition. Are you selling products and services or introducing a new business to the market.
  2. Budget – Set a budget early on, invest in a few key items that will give your exhibition the WOW factor. Not everything needs to cost the earth, remember to ask friends and family for items or look at second hand items.
  3. Time – Allow plenty of time for designing and preparing your stand. Have a trial run of setting up your stand and time it. Don’t forget to organise transport, checking that your display will fit. If you are planning to give away promotional items like pens and notepads make sure you allow time for delivery.
  4. Marketing material – Not only does your stand need to look great, you need to think about what your potential customers are going to take away with them. You may want to think about having an exhibition special, giveaway or prize draw. If you are able to collect client contact details you can touch base after the expo when they aren’t so overwhelmed. Have information on hand such as flyers, brochures and business cards and think about how you will display these perhaps on a stand or loosely on a table.
  5. Creating a winning display –Your display should firstly attract clients, create an impression of your business and then show what makes you stand out from the competition. Don’t overcrowd your display, use lighting or motion like video to draw the clients in and use simple signage that says who you are and what you do.

We’re looking forward to seeing you all there. Good luck.

Winter wedding

Things to consider when planning a winter wedding

Winter weddings are often overlooked in favour of warmer summer weddings. But we think there are lots of reasons why a winter wedding is a great idea.

Wedding bookings in summer are often booked solid, it’s more likely that you will be able to secure the date you want in the winter. Photographers, florists and entertainers should also be easier to coordinate. This is ideal if you have a short planning time.

Holding both the ceremony and reception at the same venue is a good idea in winter, this means that guests don’t have to travel and can stay warm and dry. Silverstream Retreat is an ideal location with our two venue options, onsite catering team and plenty of accommodation options.

Winter provides the perfect canvas for unique wedding styling. With the subdued tones of a winter backdrop, any colour goes. Rustic pastels to rich deep hues. Embrace the early darkness and incorporate some lovely soft lighting. Flickering tea lights in jars, lanterns, maybe even a cosy rustic fire place. Not only do they look spectacular they’ll keep your guests warm.

Winter sets the stage for some amazing wedding photos. Winter weather creates perfect lighting for portrait photos with flattering ambient light without the hot sun and harsh shadows. Be prepared for bad weather, coloured umbrellas, textured blankets and gumboots can be make for some fun props.

Clothing options for a winter wedding are endless. Layers of luxurious fabric, long sleeved dresses, winter coats, shrugs and faux fur wraps. The men won’t need to worry about wearing a three piece suit and melting in the sweltering summer heat.

Winter weddings at Silverstream are cosy and unique. Check out our wedding packages and try our new wedding calculator to get you started.

Tips for organising your wedding gift registry

You’ve decided to open a wedding registry but aren’t quite sure where to begin. To help we’ve put together some tips from our own experiences and from talking to some of our clients.

Make sure you organise your gift registry early, six to nine months before the wedding allows guests plenty of time to purchase gifts, some guest may want to purchase engagement party and bridal shower gifts also.

Don’t limit your gift registry to one shop, two or three is ideal. Make sure at least one shop has an online registry for out-of-town or overseas guests and that at least one shop is department store. Department stores have lots of basic household items, are often located in the major cities and they have gifts in all price ranges. Choosing shops that suit your style is also important.

Do some research into which shops offer gift registers and find out if they offer any special incentives, like discounts for your guests or reward points for the bride and groom.

Traditionally wedding registry details weren’t included in wedding stationery but over the last decade this has changed and people almost expect that this will be included. If you choose not to include the wedding registry details make sure your immediate family and bridal party know where the register is.

Consider the size of your guest list when choosing gifts, people like plenty of choices. You will want to register for at least twice as many gifts as the number of guests. Don’t be afraid to include some high priced items for generous guests and groups of guests.

You’ll need to manage your registry, as guests start buying gifts check to make sure there are plenty of options at different prices.

Don’t forget to keep a record of the gifts you receive and write thank you notes as soon as possible after the wedding.

Printable Wedding Photography Shot List

Make sure you don’t miss any of those must have wedding shots, download our Wedding Photography Shot List and start planning your wedding photography. This list will give you some ideas of the types of shots normally taken at a ceremony. Your wedding photographer will probably take most of these photos but make sure you let them know which ones are the most important. We also suggest giving your final list to a family member or guest on the wedding day to ensure know one is missed out.

Download our Wedding Photography Shot List here.

At Silverstream Retreat we work alongside a number of wedding photographers, we know that each photographer has their own style and personality. Choosing the right wedding photographer is an important part of wedding planning, especially when it involves the one thing that will stand the test of time, your photographs.

We’ve come up with a list of questions to help during the interview process.

How would you describe your style of photography?

You can usually determine a photographer’s style by viewing their website; Traditional (posed portraits), Photojournalistic (actions shots of the day’s events), Illustrative (a blend of traditional and photojournalistic with emphasis on composition), High Fashion (artsy and glamorous), and Natural Light (uses only natural light found in a setting). Ask the photographer to describe their working style. Do they move around a lot or do they tend to stay stationary? Do they guide you throughout the day or never make a peep? Are they not afraid to get on the dance floor to get great candid shots or do they prefer shooting from afar?

Will you be photographing our wedding?

If your photographer works for a large studio, he or she may be one of several photographers working for the company. Every photographer has his or her own style, technique, and personality, it’s important that the person you interview and like will be the one taking the photos on the day.

Can we see photos of an entire wedding?

Photographers will show all their best work on websites. If possible view several of their albums; this will give you a better idea of the quality of work you can expect.

What do your packages include and what will I have to pay extra for?

Photography packages vary drastically; some include a flat rate (e.g. $3,000 for 8 hours) with a-la-carte extras such as engagement photos, albums, thank you cards, while other photographers may charge different levels of packages ranging from least – to most time – intensive.

When will my proofs, prints, and wedding album be available?

Find out your photographer’s turnaround time. Also, ask how long you have to choose the photos from your proofs and order your prints and album.

What will you wear on my wedding day?

You don’t want your photographer to show up on your wedding day in jeans and a t-shirt. Black clothing is generally acceptable it means the photographer is less noticeable and blends in.

Do you have backup equipment?

Cameras are mechanical devices; they can fail at any moment and without warning. It is essential that your photographer has a full set of backup cameras, lenses and flashes.

If my wedding goes longer than expected, will you stay longer? If so, how much will it cost?

Sometimes due to reasons out of your control, your wedding may be delayed. Ask if the photographer will stay overtime and how much that will cost.

Do you work with an assistant?

Having an assistant to hold lights and reflectors, as well as set up equipment is essential so that the photographer can work quickly and not miss any special moments while off setting up equipment.

What happens if you are sick on my wedding day?

Your photographer should have some type of backup plan; whether it’s a network between fellow photographers or, in the case of a multi-photographer studio, another photographer from the same company