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The Difference Between Wedding Ceremony & Reception

Hey there, lovebirds! Planning your dream wedding? Well, get ready, as a lot of excitement is coming your way! This blog will break down the difference between wedding ceremonies and wedding receptions and give you a quick overview of what happens at each. Trust me, it’s more than just “I dos” and cake cutting!

Wedding Ceremonies: Where Love Takes Centre Stage

Picture this: a beautiful garden, the soft hum of music, and all eyes on you and your sweetheart. Yep, that’s the magic of a wedding ceremony. This is where you seal the deal with heartfelt vows and exchange those shiny rings.

First, you’ll need a venue that feels comfortable for you both. Whether that is a church, a chapel in Vegas, your home, or a beautiful beach such as we have here in Noosa, choose a location that has meaning and, most importantly, can cater to the size of your estimated wedding guest list. When considering locations, make sure that it has easy access for your guests and, if outside, that you can make it waterproof or has an undercover backup if the weather threatens to play havoc with that dreamy hairstyle you are planning!

In fact, according to the Easy Weddings trend report, 56% of couples get married at their wedding reception venue, 19% choose outside, such as a park or beach, 11% choose a church, and 14% choose a private property or other location.

Once you’ve got your location, you’ll need an officiant to make things official! While 85% of couples choose a wedding celebrant over a religious leader, the choice is up to you. No matter who you choose, make sure it is someone you feel comfortable with. This will create the right vibe at the ceremony and explain all the legalities so you know what to expect.

So, the location and officiant are done. What’s next?

Here’s a quick overview of the sequence of events:

  1. Procession: The grand entrance! This is when the bridal party struts down the aisle, setting the stage for your big moment.
  2. Exchange of Vows: Cue the tears! This is your chance to pour your heart out and promise forever.
  3. Ring Exchange: Bling, bling! Slip those rings on each other’s fingers to symbolise your eternal love.
  4. Sign those papers: The official bit to make it all legal.
  5. Pronouncement: “I now pronounce you…” You know the rest! Get ready for that magical kiss.

While you are in that love bubble, the pressure is off and the nerves are gone, grab a glass of bubbles and get ready for all those family photos that are coming your way! Oh, and tissues. Lots and lots of tissues.

Suppliers You’ll Need:

  • Officiant/Celebrant
  • Stylist to set up your ceremony
  • Ceremony Venue
  • Photographer and Videographer
  • Florist (for that dreamy floral arch)
  • Musicians/DJ (for setting the mood)

Wedding Receptions: Let’s Party Like There’s No Tomorrow

Now that you’re officially hitched, it’s time to celebrate in style! Welcome to the wedding reception, where the champagne flows, the dance floor heats up, and memories are made.

Finding the perfect reception venue is key. From elegant ballrooms to rustic barns, Australia offers venues to suit every taste and budget. According to Wedded Wonderland, the average cost for a wedding reception venue in Australia is approximately $15,000 to $20,000, depending on how many guests you have. For smaller weddings, see our blog on elopements here.

Once you’ve secured your spot, it’s time to let loose!

Here’s what typically goes down:

  1. Grand Entrance: Get ready to make a splash as you’re introduced for the first time as an officially married couple.
  2. Toasts and Speeches: Grab the mic and let your nearest and dearest share their heartfelt words and embarrassing stories.
  3. Feasting: all those taste tests have paid off!
  4. Cake Cutting: Or donuts. Or cheese. Pick your favourite and celebrate the moment.
  5. First Dance: Enjoy your first dance together as an officially married couple. Bust those moves however suits you!
  6. Dance Floor Madness: Let loose and dance the night away with your loved ones. It’s time to celebrate!

Suppliers You’ll Need:

  • Reception Venue
  • Stylist and decorator to make that room look perfect!
  • Furniture hire
  • Caterer and Bar – if not in a licenced reception venue
  • Cake maker
  • Entertainment (DJ, Band, etc.)

Get An Expert Guidance

So, there you have it, lovebirds! The lowdown on wedding ceremonies versus wedding receptions. If all the above makes you feel more stressed and overwhelmed, consider hiring a wedding planner.

At First Class Functions we have organised 1000s of weddings for couples just like you so we know how to make sure you get the exact day you want. We can help you find the perfect Sunshine Coast location to have your dream wedding. Remember, whether you’re saying “I do” or tearing up the dance floor, it’s all about celebrating your love in the most magical way possible.

Happy planning! 🥂💍