Back to Top
PolkaDotBride - Australia's number 1 Bridal Blog, Wedding Directory and Advice for Brides
Log In

10 Top Trends For Your Morning After Wedding Brunch

by | Wedding Planning Wisdom, Wisdom



JayAshley for DFW067 550x366 10 Top Trends For Your Morning After Wedding Brunch

After your gorgeous, glam wedding the night before, guests will love waking up to enjoy the lovely morning after wedding brunch you’ve planned! This celebration is more than a kindness, more than making sure guests have something in their stomachs before their long rides, or flights, home. It’s a chance to play with color, fabric, textures… perhaps use a color scheme you originally considered for your reception but ultimately didn’t choose. It’s a lot like planning a mini-wedding, which is why so many Mums and Dads are eager to host this day after soiree. No matter who does the brunch designing, you or your parents (and in some families, it’s the grandparents who host this fete!) here are 20 of the top trends and design elements to consider:

1. Bright, citrus colors like oranges, yellows, pinks — think the colors of the freshest and most alluring of tropical fruits. Even bright green and coral make the list of top brunch color schemes. Using a vibrant shade welcomes guests to the ‘bright, shiny day’ that is your very first full day as a married couple.

2. Fruits in the décor. It’s a budget-friendly way to add color and freshness to your brunch décor, when each guest table features a bountiful bowl of lemons, limes, or oranges. Single fruits like limes can be used as guest place cards to help them find their tables.

JayAshley for DFW072 550x366 10 Top Trends For Your Morning After Wedding Brunch

3. Provide a tropical fruit juice bar. And include tropical fruit juices your guests might not get every day, such as papaya juice or mango juice, blueberry juice, in addition to orange, grapefruit, and grape juices. Your lineup of glass pitchers holding these juices creates a bright collection of colors that adds to your décor and to the theme of vibrancy.

4. Provide a champagne bar. That’s right, more bubbly to start the day, with champagne flutes awaiting fine champagne, plus orange juice for mimosas or carafes of raspberry juice or other splashes of color and flavor for champagne cocktails.

5. Provide a Bloody Mary bar. Guests love their spiked tomato juice drinks, so make your signature drink bar a standout with a lineup of hot sauces ID’d as mild to super-hot so that guests can build their own Bloody Mary drinks, or have a server custom-prepare their drinks in this trendy interactive ‘mixology’ bar.

6. Arrange for privacy. Some hotels will allow you to use their smaller, private rooms, which lets your group mix and mingle during the brunch; something they can’t do if you’re given tables in the hotel’s regular dining room with other guests right next to you. Arrange also for roomy seating, so that guests can easily stand and move from their table to the buffet.

7. Arrange for creative twists to the usual brunch menu items. In place of pancakes, offer chocolate chip pancakes or cranberry pancakes, or a trio of warm berry sauces. In place of French toast, offer crème brulee French toast or stuffed French toast, and so on. Talk with the hotel catering manager to create some menu flair that elevates this party over the usual fare found at hotel brunches.

8. A fresh, new cake in your custom design is always welcome, especially when served with trays of mini cupcakes, petit fours, mini pastries like little Napoleans, fruit tarts and themed frosted cookies with citrus-colored and flavored frostings. Again, if you went elegant with your wedding reception cake, this is a chance to design a bright cake or desserts collection using the inspirations you had in mind during your planning season.

9. Think music. The hotel might already have a pianist who plays during the brunch, which gives you fabulous, free background music. Or, you can arrange for free music in the form of your iPod docked in a corner, and your specially-made playlist adding fun energy to the party.

10. Set up a photo booth of sorts. No need to wheel in one of those huge photo booths… just decorate a corner of your brunch space with florals, and set out the photo booth printable props you may have had in use at your reception (or new ones you’ve DIY’d for this event). Guests can pose in groups, or with you, for an extra collection of fun photos.

Images by Jennifer Bowen Photography

Swirl divider101 10 Top Trends For Your Morning After Wedding Brunch

Ms Gingham says: A great way to enjoy the wedding high with a morning after brunch! Love these ideas!

About Sharon: Sharon Naylor is the author of over 35 wedding books, including her newest: “The Bride’s Guide to Freebies” and “Bridesmaid on a Budget.” Her two books for the mothers of the bride and groom are bestsellers, and she has appeared on such top shows as Good Morning America, ABC News, Lifetime, Inside Edition and more – sharing tips and insider secrets to help you plan your dream wedding on a budget, personalized to your love story. Visit her site Sharon Naylor for more on her books, free worksheets and appearances. She lives in Morristown, NJ with her husband Joe and is at work on her next two wedding books.

Wedding Albums – Are They Really Necessary?

by | Photography Wisdom, Wisdom


Jade Norwood Photography

wedding photo album 003 550x418 Wedding Albums Are They Really Necessary?

I’m not sure if anyone else shares this kind of memory, but I remember sitting with my parents on their wedding anniversary and looking through their wedding album. Pictures of my uncle as a gawky 15 year old made my brother laugh so hard that he fell off the bed – soon we were all in fits of giggles. This memory was triggered when it came time to choose my own wedding photographer, and that is how I knew that a wedding album would have to be amongst the package that we chose.

With iPhones and iPads, social media photo sharing and huge portable harddrives, a printed album can seem really out-dated; when photos can be emailed, stored on a computer, hard drive or a disk, a photo album can seem like just another dust collector. But having worked alongside a data recovery agent, I know that when technology fails – which it does often and easily – there is a lot of heartache at the realisation that printing the favourite family photo was still on the to do list, or the photos of your wedding day were suddenly gone without a trace.

A disk of wedding photos can be a great way of keeping all of the snaps that didn’t make the album so you can look back on them and reminisce. If you ever open the storage box where that disk is kept again. But the way technology is advancing, some computers no longer even have a disk drive as they get phased out like floppy disks in favour of USB’s – and who’s to say USB’s aren’t next to go!?

Wedding albums are more than just a few snaps of your day in one neat and tidy book. They are the story of your wedding day told in beautiful pictures and just looking at it brings back those feelings of joy. Your album is a real story teller, presenting your wedding day from start to finish, that first tear dad shed as you showed him your finished outfit, to that last laugh on the dance floor when you tried to pull off the sprinkler dance move in your wedding dress!

Your wedding album is the public display and permanent record of your love, and what your love has created. There is no way that those emotions, nor their visual displays, could ever be out-dated. It is your family heirloom and can be all that is left behind after loved ones pass, or it can be a moment to share with Grandma each visit. Where memories fail, photos thankfully fill the gap so we can forever be filled with the happiness we have been blessed with.

I know that 10 years from now, I’m probably not going to remember the moment that our pageboy picked a flower for the bridesmaids at our wedding. But thanks to our wedding photographer that moment in time, along with many others, have been captured and are on display in our very own wedding album. I can’t wait to one day share it with our kids so they can see their parents on one of the happiest days of our lives… or just to laugh at so hard (at their dad, not their mum!) that they can’t help but fall off the bed!

Image by Jade Norwood Photography

Swirl divider2 Wedding Albums Are They Really Necessary?

Ms Gingham says: I love albums. I think that having a tactile item you can leaf through is beautiful.

Jade of Jade Norwood Photography says: “It’s one thing to take pictures but another thing entirely to create works of art for families, couples and weddings.”

What They Know? Van Middleton of Van Middleton Photography

by | Photography Wisdom, What Would They Know?, Wisdom


Polka Dot Bride

 Van Middleton Photography What They Know? Van Middleton of Van Middleton Photography

Conveying such intense wedding day emotions requires a light touch by the photographer – who is at once involved in that emotion, but distanced from it. Van of Van Middleton Photography is adept at this, telling a story with each of the images he takes. Van shoots around the Byron Bay and Tweed areas, but travels anywhere in Australia or beyond, to capture your wedding day.

Please describe the path that led you to photography?

I guess you could say photography grew on me over the years. In my twenties I traveled a lot, and at about the same time digital cameras arrived. I went to some unusual places and began to obsess over the images I was taking. Travel photography became a passion, although still a hobby. When I finished much of my travels and settled back down at home, I took up someone’s offer to shoot a wedding. I did a decent job, the couple were happy, and I realized I could turn something I enjoyed into a livelihood.

What are the qualities that make a good photographer?

This is a difficult question. There are so many different photographers, with so many different styles, that it’s hard to pin down specific traits without projecting. I do think ambition plays a part in all successful photographers, since it’s the catalyst of many other characteristics: determination, hard-work, a desire to learn. These then have knock-on effects, such as technical skill leading to more creative possibilities, etc etc. For wedding photographers, being personable is also an important trait. You spend a whole day with the bride and groom, and you need to tap into all those pent-up emotions in them: it helps to have people-skills.

AD7A3693 Edit 2 EditRS What They Know? Van Middleton of Van Middleton Photography

You have traveled a lot. What places have had an influence on your life? And on your photography?

Everywhere I’ve been has influenced me in one way or another. But in general I’ve been humbled by how well I’ve been treated wherever I’ve been.

North Korea probably influenced my photography the most. It required the most ingenuity (I had to shoot with a tiny compact and smuggle out my memory cards) and I received a lot of validation from the images I took there. It gave me confidence and drove me towards learning and shooting more.

You like to learn. What have you done to learn your craft? How do you keep on learning?

I searched out those photographers I consider the best in the world and studied them, their techniques, their equipment, their style. I took bits and pieces from each of them. Anything below that echelon I tried to ignore and avoid. Then, at a certain point, it becomes less about learning from others and more about exploring and learning from yourself. The best photographers in the world forge their own path, so at some point you need to trust yourself, experiment a bit and develop a unique voice and style.

a2aaRS What They Know? Van Middleton of Van Middleton Photography

You seem to encapsulate a whole story in an image. Is this what inspires you about being a photographer?

I’m definitely attracted to photos that tell a story, or capture a real moment. And by that I mean that manufactured images don’t inspire me as much. I’d like people (including the subjects when they view them later) to feel like they are observers watching an uninterrupted event. When I see a wedding photo with a groom tilting the bride back and someone tossing her veil and a flash going off to the right of frame, I can see all those components, and it strikes me as a bit silly. I don’t see the beauty there, I don’t really understand it. Of course you need to make things happen sometimes, but even when I do that I make it seem like it’s happening of its own volition, and I just happen to be there recording it.

You style is clean and seemingly simple. How is it that you develop an eye for this style, or do you naturally observe the world this way?

I think it goes back, again, to trying to avoid an image looking too manufactured. When I do tinker with the sky, I try to make it look like I didn’t tinker with it!

The landscape and surrounds is a feature in your shots of the bride and groom. Is this to give a sense of place or context to the image?

I’m a fan of landscape photography and landscape painting, and my personal feeling is that these sort of shots can be really dramatic. I’ve never made a conscious decision to shoot that way – I just find large spaces and natural settings beautiful.

How do you help your couples relax while having their photos taken?

There are no silver bullets here. Every couple is different. Some people (and I include myself in this bracket) are not very comfortable having photos taken, while others revel in it. I’m pretty easy-going, and I do my best to make them feel comfortable throughout the day. I make bad jokes, mostly at my own expense, and the mood is usually pretty relaxed by the time the location shoot comes around. I have a few tricks I use sometimes too – getting the groom to whisper something in the bride’s ear can have a good effect. Weirdly, telling them to laugh usually pays dividends as well icon smile What They Know? Van Middleton of Van Middleton Photography

AD7A2607 EditRS What They Know? Van Middleton of Van Middleton Photography

You say you would do ‘almost anything for your clients’. What notable situations can you tell us about?

I have a habit of climbing up trees, crawling through grass and hiking up hills. I’m also quite clumsy, so I’ve had my fair share of incidents. I’ve been attacked by a farmer’s dog (took a piece out of my thigh), I’ve fallen in a cane drain and I once sat on a cactus. I tripped over a toddler at a reception (missed the cake by about a foot), and one time I fell on top of the best man at a reception when my camera holster pivoted me off a wall.

If you could shoot a wedding anywhere in the world, where would it be (and why)?

India. For sheer colour and drama, it can’t be matched. I’d also love to shoot somewhere like Iceland – tundra and fir trees and snow. It’s so different to what I’m used to, it would be amazing.

What would you tell your younger self – knowing what you know now?

Not much, except keep going, and enjoy the ride.

danceRS What They Know? Van Middleton of Van Middleton Photography

What are your dreams and aims for the future?

Shoot less, but make them count. I’ve been prolific in the past, to learn and grow my business, but now I need to slow down, refine what I know and seek out work and locations that inspire me. I need to spend more time on my brand and marketing, it’s something I’ve long neglected.

Being based in Queensland, what do you like to do for fun, in this State that is ‘beautiful one day, and perfect the next’?

I surf (though not as much as I’d like), and I hang out with my wife and little girl. That keeps me happy icon smile What They Know? Van Middleton of Van Middleton Photography

deannaRS What They Know? Van Middleton of Van Middleton Photography

Thank you Van for sharing your thoughts with us. To find out more about Van Middleton Photography please visit the website.

All images from Van Middleton Photography.

Back to Top