Image by Jackson Grant via Michelle & Clint’s Chic Wedding At The George Ballroom

The 2018 International Trend Report is here and there is a lot for you to look forward to as you plan your upcoming wedding. The buzzwords for the coming wedding season are “guest experience.” The more you can incorporate different ways for your guests to connect with you as well as each other, the better.

Which trends are most popular this year and how can you incorporate them into your wedding design?

Photo Credit: Rocksalt Photography

Choose an Interesting Venue

In the coming seasons, couples will focus on choosing spaces that are intrinsically interesting and that offer the ability to customise the overall look and feel. Many are interpreting this trend strictly as a demand for empty urban warehouse spaces or wineries, but WedShed’s co-founders Amy Parfett and Melany McBride anticipate the rise of other kinds of venues. “We’re seeing an emergence of less traditional locations,” say Parfett and McBride. “Think school camp venues that aren’t in a necessarily touristic hub, but have enough beds and a beautiful, natural setting.”

Design Beyond the Tabletop

According to Jes Gordon, “Design will not be contained to the tabletop anymore; it will flow well beyond its normal parameters.” She predicts that designs will include everything from the linen on the table, to the rug underneath, the specialty chairs for seating, all the way to chandeliers and hanging installations. Your colours and textures can literally reach out and wrap all around guests extending the experience well beyond place settings and centrepieces.

Floral Trends

Using foliage over flowers continues to be one of the growing trends in the wedding industry. You can incorporate it into your design through “statement pieces including round arches, hanging florals and decorated floral staircases,” according to Dee McMeeking. Tesselaar Flowers’ Kyla Helgeson agrees, saying that many of her clients are requesting “foliage and floral garlands for their long guest tables, and, if budget allows, hanging feature installations above the bridal table or the dance floor.”

Photo Credit: Andrea Harborne Photography

Royal Wait-and-See

McMeeking also predicts that the British royal wedding will influence 2018 weddings in ways that we don’t know yet, exactly. If you love the royal style, keep an eye out and be prepared to emulate Harry and Megan’s style and design choices as soon as they are revealed.

Overall Theming

All of these elements can be tied together under the arch of a single theme. Romance is the overwhelming favorite theme for 2018. For instance, a romantic garden wedding could have a “Midsummer Night’s Dream vibe,” says Ceci Johnson. It might be “a little bit dreamy and ethereal with a drop of fantasy mixed in, including starry nights dripping with flowers and lots of love in the air.”

Whichever theme you choose, remember that “authenticity is key,” as Liz Linkleter says. You can make your theme come alive by adding local musicians, regional cuisine, and “artisans who are truly passionate and skilled” in their fields, says Linkleter. Hire specialty entertainers to interact with your guests during the cocktail period, and ask your caterer to incorporate local ingredients in your menu to give your guests an authentic feel for the local culture.

There are so many ways to incorporate the latest trends into your wedding design. Which 2018 trends are you anticipating most?

Ms Zigzag says: Fantastic insight into the very latest wedding trends from around the world. This is one report that I’m very excited to read from start to end. 

About Kylie Carlson: Kylie Carlson is the CEO of the International Academy of Wedding and Event Planning. With six locations globally, the academy boasts an internationally recognised accreditation program that brings professional training to wedding planners, designers and stylists.

We think that photography is painting a picture not with a brush, but with images. And photographers put as much of themselves into your photographs as an artist does into a painting. In Sarah Moore Photography’s images, you can see the painterly quality, the particular way the light shines on the skin or through a dress, the shadows. And that’s what draws you into the photographs – because the images tell a story of a moment in time. You start to form a picture of the moment, imagining the story behind the image. And that’s what we love about photography – no matter what style, whether it’s in colour or black and white,  there is always that elusive mystery of the moment – only known to the people in the shot. Sarah shares her thoughts behind her images – what a great read!

Why did you choose photography as a career path?

Photography was a natural progression from Graphic Design and Fashion Design, which I had spent my 20s and 30s pursuing. Having children meant that I needed something that was flexible and yet still with that creative flair that I crave, so I turned my focus to the camera applying my design skills to my craft.

Did you have an early influence/mentor on your career?

I had a couple of photographers who I spent a lot of time with, watching and learning their craft. I also have a passion for the arts, so draw a lot on the old masters in my portraiture.

What does photography mean to you?

I am passionate about photography, I love that I get to provide my clients with such special moments, works of art that they can keep forever, that become part of their lives.

What’s it like working with children and animals? Do they always steal the show?

It is so much fun!! Sometimes it can be a challenge, especially if the little person is intimidated by my camera, but that is part of the challenge, creating a connection with them, getting to know their little personalities and capturing that personality.

With both kids and animals you have to shoot quickly, be on your toes and not expect too much from



You like using the light in your photographs. Is this simply being in the right place at the right time, or do you work deliberately to get the best lit shots?

I love light!!! Any type of light, midday sun, morning rays, golden afternoon light. I watch the light, how it plays across the lace of a wedding dress, the face of a bride, I watch for dust motes floating through the sun, and my favourite time of day is just before sunset where the light is deep and rich.

So I work towards the perfect light. Every time!

What affects the way you photograph weddings – your photography style?

I love the intimate moments, the connection between my couples, the emotion of the day, the laughter. I think that is the biggest influence. I get teary at every wedding!! Totally hopeless. Light is also a massive influence.

I am also obsessed with black and white photography, taking colour out of the image enhances the emotion of the moment. It takes away any distractions. As a photographer it is actually quite difficult to shoot well in black and white.

How have you seen your style evolve over the years?

If I look back at some of my first weddings, I can still see my style peeking through but technically it wasn’t as perfect. I also did a lot of camera tilt J but that was the style 15 years ago!

What are some tips you can give to bridal couples when choosing their photographer?

Do lots of research, ask lots of questions, find a style that you like and then meet the photographer, ensure that you connect with them. Make sure that you see a full wedding (from start to finish), it is easy to show a couple of your best shots on the internet, shooting an entire wedding well from the bridal prep through to the first dance is much harder!

How can couples relax in front of the camera so that you can get the best shots?

I advise my couples to do an engagement session prior to the wedding. It takes about 40 minutes to relax in front of a camera and if we can get this out of the way prior to the wedding, we are going to get the best photos we can on the day! It is a great way for us to all get to know each other, for the couple to realise that they will barely know that I am there.

Do you pre-plan your shots, or do your know instinctively where to be and how to shoot to get the best images?

It’s a little bit of both, I like to do a recce of the venue or location before the wedding – but if that’s not possible I do a quick scout as we arrive looking for textures, backgrounds, and light.

Without giving too much away, have you had to do some strange or funny things to get a good shot?

Goodness yes!! I am constantly crawling around on the ground, hiding in bushes, or walking backwards off piers into water. I have even been taken out by a massive wave at a wedding at Bradleys Head just to get the perfect shot (being wet and sandy for the remainder of a wedding is not a lot of fun!).

Are you the sort of person to always have a camera in your hand even in your downtime?

I adore macro nature photography, and of course taking photos of my kids, so yep there is always a camera in my hand. I live in the Blue Mountains and we love walking, and I always take my camera with me.

Do you photograph weddings anywhere and everywhere? And where is a favourite location ?

I adore that I travel to so many different places for weddings – I have travelled all over Australia. My favourite though are Country weddings – I grew up in the country so I feel very connected to the land.

How do you feel when you’ve finally completed the photographs and can show the couple the final edit?

I am always so excited to get home and go through the images. I can’t help sharing at least one image with the couple as soon as I can. Once the gallery is completed though there are always a few nerves sending it off – I invest so much emotionally in my images!

How do you relax after a long wedding day?

Sundays are my family day – I don’t shoot at all on a Sunday. My partner and I usually head out for breakfast together (we have a favourite spot up in Medlow Bath overlooking the Megalong Valley) – we then spend the day hanging with kids, pottering around home, or going for a bush walk!

Thank you Sarah for sharing your story. Isn’t it so very interesting to see what makes a photographer tick – it allows us to get to know the person behind the lens! To find out more about Sarah Moore Photography visit the website.

Headshot via Sarah Moore Photography.


Photographer: Sarah Moore

Image by Fennel & Fox Photography via Carla & Matt’s Glamorous St Kilda Wedding

3 ways to kick your finances into gear before your wedding

If you’re anything like the average person, your wedding will most likely be the most expensive event you’ll ever host. Making sure your finances are in a good place before your wedding is one of the most important parts of the wedding planning process.

With a whole lot of different expenses to budget for, you’ll want to feel prepared. Here are three things you can do to help stick to your plan so that you can enjoy your big day without the financial hangover afterwards.

Image by Black Bird Tale via Candice & Alex’s Classic Romantic Wedding At Aravina Estate

Save and then save some more

The obvious thing to do before your wedding is save. As a ballpark figure, you want to be saving around 10-20% of your income/s. However, don’t let your savings sit in an everyday transaction account. With wedding planning generally taking at least six months, let interest build up in a high interest savings account so that you can grow your savings balance even more. You can also set up an automatic transfer from your everyday transaction account to your savings account every time you get paid so that you don’t have to think about it.

You should also consider having an emergency fund in place. Set aside three months’ worth of savings on top of your regular wedding savings as a “rainy day” fund in case something goes wrong. Although it will mean you have to save more, having a security blanket in place is absolutely crucial for newlyweds.

Image by Michael Briggs Photography via Kristy & Damian’s Gorgeous Country Wedding At Flowerdale Estate

Get help from friends and family

While you don’t want to assume that your parents or loved ones will be able to help you out financially, it doesn’t hurt to ask. Even if they can’t give you a large sum of money outright, they may be willing to give you a loan. That way, you can save yourself the stress of having to pay interest to a bank.

You might also be able to get friends and family members to help you with photography, makeup, decor or even the cake. A budding photographer or baker might be more than happy to help you out in exchange for building their portfolio. You can save heaps on wedding expenses this way.

Image by Lucie Zeka via Boho Country Wedding Style

Use templates, tools and apps

The last thing to do is remember that you don’t have to do this all on your own. Wedding planning may have gotten a little more complicated in some aspects, but there are definitely more tools available now than ever before.

For instance, try using a free wedding planning app such as WeddingHappy, or make your own budgeting spreadsheet to keep organised. Don’t forget all the different resources that you can find online like the The Colour Book! And if you’re willing to spend a little money to save in the long run, sites like Etsy have a wide variety of tools and templates available for you to use.

Image by Kevin Lue via Emily & Tim’s Classic Blue Mountains Wedding

At the end of the day, you want to feel comfortable enough financially to enjoy your big day without stressing out over how you’ll make ends meet. Use these tips to ensure that your wedding goes off without a hitch.

Ms Zigzag says: There’s no fun in planning a wedding that is way out of your budget and one that is going to cause you to pull your hair out. Work within your budget and forego the things you really don’t need. Thanks Bessie for these handy tips! 

About Bessie Hassan: Bessie Hassan is a Money Expert at, the site that compares virtually everything. Bessie is an experienced commentator who often appears on national radio, TV, and throughout online publications sharing her best money-saving tips and advice. Bessie is passionate about helping people improve their personal finances, particularly during milestones throughout their life, such as their wedding day.