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Top Ten Wedding Planning Tips from Married at First Sight

As a celebrant watching Married at First Sight, I love the first few weeks of episodes from a wedding industry supplier perspective.

We get to witness various Australian wedding ceremonies, venues, styling, and couples. From the outset, we are reminded that all of us are different. Some of those in the experiment say it’s about falling in love, finding their happily ever after, and manifesting their connection, while others are more about appearance and materialism. So, make sure you choose the wedding that’s right for you.

Here are some tips we can learn from the MAFS ceremonies and receptions.

1.       Individuality

We all have different perspectives, thoughts, types, histories, and patterns when looking at love and we all have varying ideas on what our wedding day will look like. Therefore, that’s why all weddings are unique and should be about what it is that you want to do, from elopements to 200-plus guests. But, regardless of how you want to marry and celebrate, by watching the MAFS weddings, you can certainly gain insight into some tips and tricks for your nuptials and receptions. Ironically, they didn’t have a choice, but you do!

2.       Celebrant Positioning (particularly for the kiss)

Each celebrant has their viewpoint about where they would like to stand during the ceremony. I explain to my couples that I will be to the side of the wedding party to share their story and other sections of the ceremony before I come in between to help with vows cards, microphones and rings (still ensuring to get out of the way of the ring exchange). I’m then back to the side to wrap up and am heading to the next suburb when you kiss! Not a photo I want to be in (not unlike you walking back up the aisle, no me in the background!) Of course, I am flexible with where I stand, as requested by my couple.

3.       Outdoor Weddings

The weather elements in Melbourne can play havoc with your outdoor wedding ceremony. Wind and rain can cause issues with hair styling, decorative styling, veils, etc, and the heat and cold certainly affect the comfort levels of all involved. Consider carefully whether it’s the right choice to hold the ceremony outside, including for safety reasons, and always have a backup plan. Will Grandma be able to withstand the elements?


MAFS 2024 - Wedding Ceremony Floral
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4.       Styling Ideas

The styling for the ceremonies this year has been AMAZING.

The florals are to die for, and the seating and ceremony décor are just beautiful. We have seen gorgeous arbours, signage, colours, symmetrical and asymmetrical shapes, and classic and modern touches. These concepts have continued into the reception with table displays, backdrops, and ambience for stunning celebratory spaces. Be reminded, though, that many hours of work go into creating these setups, not to mention the cost of the florals and décor and the hours to bump in all the styling and pack down at the end. This isn’t cheap, so be prepared to pay for these Pinterest-worthy displays.

A trick is to use as much of your ceremony styling again in the reception space (florals, signage, chairs, décor) to maximise its use and save on costs.

MAFS 2024 - Ceremony
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5.       Speeches

Whilst it’s wonderful to hear from family and friends celebrating your love and marriage, we only need a few people to speak at the reception. Choose wisely, give time limits, ensure the speeches don’t overlap in content and get someone (like me as your MC) to read over them to check. This is about two people marrying and starting their new journey together; it’s not a 21st, it’s not a roast about either partner, nor should it should not be R-rated.

6.       Shoes

Remember being encouraged as a kid to wear your new school shoes around the house to wear them in? Well, no different for wedding day shoes for you and your wedding party. Many brides choose sneaker shoes or lower heels as sensible, all-day wear shoes. But, if you still want to rock the heels, like the outdoor wedding, you might have a backup plan and spare shoes to change into. Also, be aware of what surfaces you will be walking on to and from the ceremony and when you find those fabulous photo locations. You don’t want to be carried everywhere and roll your ankle. And for those wearing brand new leather, tie up shoes, watch for blisters at the back of the heel for the first wear. Keep some Band-Aids handy.

7.       Getting Ready Vibes

On your wedding day, it’s important to TRY to be as stress-free as possible when getting ready before the ceremony. Many couples spend more of the day with others before the celebrations begin than they do with their marriage partner. The more relaxed, the better when getting hair and make-up done, wedding party photos, travelling to the venue, etc. Try to surround yourself with peeps who will help keep you calm and centred, have a great playlist, food, and drink, and be ready to marry. Get as much organised in the lead-up to make the day smooth sailing.

8.       PDA

Public Displays of Affection vary from person to person, couple to couple. Obviously, with the MAFS couples having just met, affectionate displays or intimacy can be awkward and embarrassing. This also can be the same for couples who have been together for years and are stressed about so many ‘kisses’ and closeness. Make sure you choose a photographer and/or videographer you feel comfortable working with who you think will relax you and bring out the best, less-awkward PDA if that worries you.

9.       Does anyone object?

I only ever thought this was included at the climax of American movies so the loved-up couple (who aren’t getting married at this point) end up together. In the 1000 + weddings I have officiated, I have never, and will never, ask if any of the guests ‘object’ to the wedding. The guests are not getting married and have no right to interfere on the wedding day. Enjoy my ceremony and celebrate with the couple.

10.       The Marriage Itself

While the wedding is a fun and fabulous celebration of your relationship, the marriage that comes after truly is the focus of why you are having a wedding; it’s a lifetime together. And while we see (almost) all smiles on the MAFS wedding days, it’s afterwards when the going gets tough in the sit-downs, day-to-day life, and dinner parties. And although very different circumstances, this is not unlike relationships and marriage. So, just remember that your wedding day is the continuation of your life together, now as a married couple, and there will be ups and downs. Enjoy your wedding and honeymoon and the marriage that lies ahead.


So there you have it. While we can watch Married at First Sight as a voyeur and lover of drama, we can also learn many things about weddings, people, relationships, and ourselves.

Please contact me here if you want to book a Melbourne wedding celebrant and/or MC.

Happy weddings and marriages peeps!
MAFS 2024 Australia