Ask the experts

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your Hampshire and Dorset Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to editor@yourhampshiredorset.wedding

To view more Q&A's on a different topic, please select one from the list below.

Hot topic: All things wedding

Local experts advise on all things wedding

Spring fever

Spring fever

Q. We're getting married in spring as it's our favourite time of year. What details and decorative touches would you suggest to add to our seasonal celebration?

A. Deborah Johnson says: One of the best things about a spring wedding is the choice of flowers available. You don't have to just think Easter eggs and daffodils either. Keep the palette colourful and light; materials like Perspex are great for a fresh, clean look and are a cool alternative to rustic wood.

This year's spring colours are all about coral, lavender and a mix of dusky pastel shades, including gorgeous cornflower blue. As the nights are often still dark, fairylights are also really effective for creating a magical 'nearly summer' vibe.

Don't forget the weather can be unpredictable though, so don't bank on being able to make use of outdoor spaces, unless you have an array of lovely umbrellas at the ready!

Extra flair

Extra flair

Q. I want a statement look for my wedding day with a dress that's different to the norm. What are the latest trends to stand out from the crowd?

A. Sally Broad says: From plunging necklines to high necks, no sleeves to long sleeves, beautiful colours and 3D florals, not forgetting the shimmer of gold and silver metallics in both long and short style gowns; these are just some of the stunning bridal trends for the season ahead.

This year, we're seeing wedding gowns move away from traditional white and ivory fabrics towards fun, colourful designs in both sheer and solid textured materials. Flowing wedding gowns with colourful splashes of baby blue and pink, black, red and even shades of yellow will be seen.

You could even turn your gown into a one-of-a-kind work of art by having it hand-painted with beautiful flowers, incorporating this year's hot hue Pantone's Living Coral.

While traditional bridal styles remain popular, following the two royal weddings in 2018, we expect to see brides in elegant gowns with clean lines and more tailored looks. A simple classic dress, but with just a dash of colour, such as a beautiful bow or sash, could be the perfect choice for you. Jumpsuits and two-piece outfits, are also a great alternative for a sophisticated look.

Soft details with a touch of tailoring will make any shape look streamlined. Sheer caplets, cropped jackets and capes instead of veils are ideal for spring weddings due to the changeable weather.

Wedding know-how

Wedding know-how

Q. We're recently engaged and have only just started on the wedding planning. We've been researching venues online but most of the ones we really like have been out of our price range. How can we have our dream wedding without breaking the bank?

A. Frankie Murphy says: The first thing to consider is your priorities. Is it more important to you where you get married or when you get married? If you have a dream venue that you really like the look of, but you're worried you can't afford it, check if it offers a more favourably-priced option outside of the peak summer season, as we do at The Italian Villa at Compton Acres. It's also worth enquiring about great-value packages which include the catering as this is usually less expensive than paying for venue hire and catering separately.

Consider your guest list carefully, wedding packages will probably have a clear minimum number of guests you need to cater for, even though the venue may be able to cater for many more. Don't forget that you can invite a select number of family and friends to your whole wedding day and have more join you for the evening party.

It's worth considering the style of your venue and what they offer in terms of décor that's already included as this can save you a tidy sum overall on extra decorative touches. Think about the location too. Does it have free parking? Is it easy to access with local transport links nearby? This can help save money on transporting guests and the wedding party to and from.

There are always ways to have the wedding of your dreams. The best thing you can do is to compile a list and get in touch with the venue to see how they can help you achieve as many items on your wish list as possible.

Sweet sensations

Sweet sensations

Q. We're great cake lovers but have no idea what style, colour or flavour to choose for our big day. What would suggest that's on trend and will make a great centrepiece?

A. Sally Beedles says: This year I'm seeing some wonderful new ideas coming through as well as continued love for some trends from last year. Here are few of my favourites:

STYLES
- Extravagance – my 2019 diary is filled with four- and five-tiered cakes full of textures like ruffles, sequins and glitter to give your wedding cake the wow factor.

- Semi-naked or buttercream-covered cakes remain a popular choice; adorned with fresh spring flowers and foliage. This style is perfect for couples on a budget and you can always add some colour to the icing for something a little different.

- Plaques and motifs are the perfect way to personalise your wedding cake and can come in a range of styles to suit your theme.

COLOURS
- Think blush pink, teamed with either grey or navy or even a marbled effect, which is still very popular.

- We can't ignore Pantone Colour of the Year Living Coral, although my preference is for a slightly paler tone or peach shade.

- Metallics – silver, gold, rose gold, copper, sequins and glitter for extra glamour.

FLAVOURS
With multiple tiers come multiple flavours so why not treat your guests to a selection? We have an extensive menu to choose from but these are our top three favourites:
- Champagne and raspberry
- Lemon
- Salted caramel

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