Category Archives: Reception


The bonbonerie / favours come under the budget area for us. We don’t want to spend a lot on potentially useless gifts that tend to get left behind!

I do love bonfavs. From stubby coolers, coasters, cocktail glasses, to photo frames and candles. I just love trinkets. I’m very easily pleased.

I especially love edible bonfavs. Almonds, chocolates, mints, mini bottles of alcohol, cookies, cupcakes, macarons, chocolate coated strawberries… There are so many options! It’s also extremely likely that guests will enjoy them, and they’ll be used (i.e. consumed).

How cute are these cookies that double as place cards?

At around $5 each, cookies were out of our budget. Making them yourself could be a fun project. I briefly considered it, but cookies are my kitchen nemesis so I didn’t want to DIY them.

I was newly inspired by gorgeous little jars of jams…

One of our favourite short-break spots is Berry on NSW’s South Coast. The Berry Treat Factory makes delicious jams, which are only topped by the best. mustard. ever.

As a ‘nod’ to our trips down there, we ordered 55 mini ‘three-berry’ jams and 60 mini honey mustards. They are VERY budget-friendly – their mini jams are $1.00 each, and the mini mustards are $1.20 each. Including the $10 courier, the total for 115 bonfavs was $137. Plus we get to enjoy the leftover jars (which is why I ordered extra mustard – I am ridiculously excited by how good it is) šŸ˜‰

It’s such a relief how everything is coming together. I just need to add the fabric over the lids, tied with twine. I was going to tie a little ‘thank you’ note to each jar, but is it necessary?



Filed under Budget, Reception

fred + ginger.

The Groom and I had our first wedding dance lesson on Thursday night! I have grand visions of spins, lifts, dramatic footwork… I don’t think we’ll quite get there. But we’ll have fun trying.

It was so hard trying to choose a song. We don’t have “our song”. We wanted something not overly romantic or slow. I turned to Disney for some inspiration, and we liked A Whole New World from Aladdin, but luckily Wikipedia told me it had been done by Jordan & Peter Andre, AND Jessica Simpson & Nick Lachey. Awful.

It became a decision between Feeling Good by Muse, and Edge of the World by Faith No More.

We chose Edge of the World, and decided to ignore part of the lyrics. The music itself is just too perfect. After all, the first dance song doesn’t need to be the ultimate expression of our relationship, right?? It’s just 4 minutes…

So over 4 or more lessons, we’re learning a choreographed, slow cha-cha-cha style dance to Faith No More. I love it.

Now to the hard part. When is the right time to dance the first dance? Do we wait until we’ve filled ourselves with food and wine? I’d rather dance it at the start of the reception, but the dance traditionally signals the start of the actual party, doesn’t it?


Filed under Music, Reception

the dining table.

I dislike it when reception tables are full of stuff. So much stuff all over the tables that I feel so cramped, shuffling around the many different glasses, plates, cutlery,Ā napkins, butter, wine bottles, favours, place cards, menus, candles, table scatters, tall vases… aargh.

so much stuff.

What I love about our reception venue is how spacious and minimalist their dining room is. We don’t feel the need to add much to it. We’ll be having long tables, probably 5 or 6Ā tables of 20 (with the bridal party & partners table in the centre of everyone). Table centrepieces / decorations will simply beĀ small glass votive candles, and 2 pots of herbs per table. I love living centrepieces – no, not like living fish (ick), but plants.

so much space.

We’re going to DIY these – and give them to family members after the wedding. Good ol’ Ikea has a wide range of pots, and The Groom loves gardening so he’ll pot the herbs – we’ve left it a bit late though so we’ll have to buy pre-grown herbs! I’m thinking rosemary – it’ll smell so good, it will tie in with the bouquets & buttonholes, and it works with our foodie/ rustic/ garden/ etc ‘theme’!

luscious herbs - by


Filed under Flowers, Musings, Reception

the menu tasting.

My most anticipated moment of wedding planning is almostĀ upon us – the menu tasting.

I am ridiculously excited!

The Groom and I both love good food and wine, so this was the most important thing to us when choosing a venue (and it has taken up a large chunk of The Budget). We viewed several venues in the Hunter Valley, but we chose Muse Restaurant at Hungerford Hill.

It ticked all the boxes – beautiful food and wine, nice dining chairs (no chair covers), rectangular tables (not round), ceremony on-site. We loved the look of the entire place (inside and out), we loved their service and approach to a wedding reception, and it’s a fine dining restaurant so, most importantly, the food will be beautiful (and, incidentally, it’s also the name of my favourite band šŸ˜‰ ).

The Groom and I have our menu tasting on September 4th (for his birthday weekend), and we’ve made the shortlist of options… We have to cut it down to 4 canapes and 2 entrees, mains and desserts:

– Polenta and vintage cheddar toast, roast capsicum and black olive
– Smoked salmon, lime, avocado, baby caper, Spanish onion crepe
– Chargrilled chorizo, zucchini, tomato and chili chutney
– Crispy king prawn and ginger wonton, lemon and lime aioli
– Duck, spinach, and beetroot tartlette, sweet balsamic reduction (bottom of the list!)

– Pan fried sea scallops, sweet corn puree, crisp pancetta, salsa verde
– Ballotine of Quail, peppered parsnip puree, baby English spinach, truffle honey dressing

– Slow roasted lamb rack, roast garlic and potato puree, green beans, truss baby tomatoes, almond and balsamic reduction
– Grimaud duck breast served pink, lentils, smoked speck, red wine, pear and ginger scented jus
– Prosciutto wrapped pork fillet, braised Chinese cabbage, sweet red wine and blackberry dressing (bottom of the list!)

– Warm chocolate fondant, vanilla bean ice cream, honeycomb
– Citrus curd tart, Italian meringue, blueberry sauce, coconut sorbet



Filed under Musings, Reception