Welcome to a new wedding series for Bridalwave.tv: A real life, step by step guide to having a wedding in Italy by bride-to-be Victoria.
First off let me introduce myself, I am Victoria and after a whirlwind proposal in Venice I am now an excited bride to be. First off we (I hate saying ‘we’ but feel if I refer to ‘I’ throughout my blog I shall sound like one of those Bridezilla’s) always knew the wedding needed to be super unique, intimate and with a vintage 60’s feel and we always wanted to get married in Italy. After a trip early on in our relationship across the country via train it held a special spot in our hearts.
My blog entries for Bridalwave will be about sharing wedding-related discoveries as I plan my own big day. I plan to document my own decision making process and post highlights from sites I find along the way. I am planning my wedding to take place in Radda-in-Chianti, Tuscany for June 11th next year so this will be a wedding planned in less than a year, in another country, all by someone with no experience of planning a wedding (Phew!).
To be clear I have been arranging for a couple of months so my first few posts will be bringing you all up to speed with where I am at.
The first step was to choose a location in Italy. Although we got engaged in Venice we felt it was too touristy and too expensive for us. We loved the idea of hiring a country villa Rolling stones / Nellcote style to enjoy a week of hanging out with our friends and family. We just didn’t know where. We already had a trip to Florence planned and the boy had thought about proposing at the Il Palio in Sienna so we decided somewhere between the two could work.
Once we had a rough idea of location we knew we would have to visit each venue to choose the right one, so we started in August researching locations using Lonely Planet guides, wedding planner websites – Exclusive Italy Weddings and Best Italian Weddings and the Internet.
It cost us £150 to book the viewings though the UK based agent. Expensive you may think but to be honest at this stage we were the blind leading the blind and needed direction. After a preliminary meeting with We Do Weddings we felt we really needed additional help – at least to get out there and to narrow down venues. They also pointed us in the direction of caterers to visit and gave us the opening times for town halls. We were keen to marry in a town hall rather than a church.
We then did as much reading and research as we possibly could before we left…we had a couple of weeks. These were our top 5 most visited websites before we left:
Trip Advisor – Gave us real reviews by Villa customers. We were delighted to see our shortlisted 3 venues had all received 5 stars
Weddings Abroad Guide – A great site with a fab FAQ section to help you decide if getting married abroad is really for you
You and Your Wedding(Getting Married Abroad section) – Great photos and inspiration. Also some great offers – especially for those planning on getting married in the Caribbean
Confetti’s Getting Married Abroad Checklist – Great list to print off and take with you
Snap Galleries – so I could view again and again his stunning shots of the Rolling Stones at Nellcote – my biggest wedding inspiration
In my next post I will share with you how are reccy trip to Italy went and which venue we decided to go with.