Monday, 4 October 2010

marquee de Sadness

and breathe's not a big deal....but...

(Also I mean no disrespect to those who love a traditional marquee but I really do not.)

So they finally answered our questions about the marquee, to say there would be tears would be lying but I am close. (I know it would be uber pathetic but it's my party...).

So it appears we have no choice in marquee. This be the marquee we will have. It has been present since the fire and is starting to look a little shabby.

See my problem?

1. I love my grey but a grey carpet? A grey carpet which looks like it has seen better days. 

2. I did expect a wooden dance floor, even if it were tiny!

3. Also I would expect tablecloths which graze the floor. Ugly table legs should be neither seen nor heard.

4. Well, certainly no chair covers for us (not a problem!)

5. A rather pathetic excuse for lighting.

6. It generally screams cheap (and checking on the suppliers website, it is!)

However I think I still want to use the marquee. Maybe? Or should I just be satisfied with my lot and cope with everything in here? This is our ceremony cum dining cum dancing room. (Check out the curtains!)

Admittedly, for me, this room is loverly but grumpoles anna wanted the more than one room extravaganza.

Should I just lower my expectations and just get on with it?

Bugger. Why can I not just decide?

We either settle for the somewhat hideous marquee which I fear cannot be made to look awesome (and sort of makes me feel a little queasy) or suck it up and decorate the hell out of the ceremony room after we have said "i do". Yet who do I ask to help decorate? 

I am sure I don't want to do it myself and I don't really want to ask others to do something that could have easily been done the night before by myself and others (as per the original plan) when we are meant to be having fun? Also at this point I do not trust the venue to be particularly helpful with regard to decor.* 

There definitely will be time for a room layout and decor change around as we shall be entertaining our guests with a "champagne" reception. 

Help? What do I do, my gut is being particularly unhelpful. 

Also is not getting what I want ok? It means I cannot possibly strive for perfection and will always know I could have had a better day? For me that's a good thing. (Yes my brain is a little screwed up.)

*Oh yes, bitch anna is coming into play now and yes I realise that was a rather tame statement, you should hear my actual potty mouth, not so pretty even in a British accent!


  1. What if you use the pretty room for the ceremony; have everyone go out to the marquee de doom for a cocktail hour while the ceremony room is rearranged to make it into a dining/dancing room?

    Limited time in the marquee, you still get a different set up and two locations?

  2. The room for my evening reception also has those hideous curtains. I'm having them removed - venue is more than happy to do this for us.

    Ive had to succumb to chair covers because venue will be having new chairs - gold and poo brown alternately.

    I have a huge problem with chair covers but the venue is paying for them so what choice do I have? With only 12 days to go I've given up in trying to create perfection. BUT my whole focus has shifted from the wedding celebration but to the actual ceremony.

    In these last few weeks all I can think about is marrying H2B in front of our family and friends. In fact I've become quite soppy about it. I'm sure you will feel the same so don't worry about marquee. The majority of pics are taken during ceremony and they'll be the ones you treasure the most.

  3. to be perfectly honest anna, that room needs no decorating. I know it sucks, it really does, having a decision like this forced on you, but a one room wedding ain't so bad. if you really hate the marquee that much you are going to spend all night apologising for it and not being happy, and that room is exquisite as it is. look atthe panelling!
    I've found when things like this have been thrown at me in the wedding process, its been a way of forcing my hand, and the decision usually turns out better. while marquees can be heated, and wonderful, in november, up here, it may not be the best (I'm shivering as I write this, and i'm inside!) and you dont really seem to like it to be quite honest.
    For my part, the photos of that marquee, you can't see the table legs, and to all the wedding guests who don't read wedding blogs, won't notice how its decorated, they'll just be over the moon to see you and bean married.
    I dont want to sound like I'm ranting at you, cos I'm not, I hope some tiny bit of this might have helped. I don't know whether i've answered your questions or not really.

    p.s. please dont decorate your own reception AFTER the ceremony!

  4. If it helps, our marquee in itself was pretty ugly I think, but I didn't notice at all on the day. And we had plastic chairs.

  5. Can you get the venue to pay for someone (a 'dresser'?) to come and work some magic on the ceremony room in the time you're having post ceremony drinkies? It seems like they owe you one (or a few...) with all the post-fire hassle. Just a thought. I'm also a November bride, but touch wood, I haven't come up against a problem like this yet.

  6. This is very particularly unhelpful, but should you stick with the marquee as as is you will not really see any of these flaws on your wedding day. You will be too distracted by getting married, having all your favorite people around, and having a good time. It pains me to say that. But you 1) really want the extra room and 2) really won't want to have to worry about decorating your single room after the ceremony. The path of least resistance is indeed a righteous path to walk on occasion.

  7. I say ditch the marquee idea - its sounds like you hate it even when you're trying to be positive and the room you do have is very lovely. It made me think of these beautiful pictures/wedddings:
    (there's another one I can't find)

    and I think taking the curtains off if you wanted to do that is a great idea (and the least the venue can do) and fairy lights would look fab up there against the windows dark november night.

    I'm using one room for everything so all the decorating (ie throwing fairylights at everything) will be done before hand and just doing a quick shift of tables while we have a post ceremony drink somewhere else so I reckon it will work for you.

    I'd try to think of this as a blessing in disguise if it forces your hand and means you get to concentrate on one room, I'm 46 days out and can't imagine having to change my half-arsed plans so feel for you but it'll be grand in the end xx

  8. could you eat in the formal room and then turn the marquee into Bedouin tent arrangement where you embrace the ruching, and have a bit of a sit down and dance, loads of rugs from ikea...Actually i'm cringing as I write this, its not as easy as it sounds - I feel your pain. Bummer, I don't even know why I'm writing this I'm so intrigued by all this wedding stuff I was married in Vegas by Elvis with our two kids, Its the 'I do' bit that counts...good luck - sorry I wasn't any help...looking forward to seeing wedding pictures x

  9. OK, this might be a stupid/unworkable suggestion, but I'll throw it up there. What if you did the ceremony in the marquee, then dinner and dancing in the former ceremony room? In my experience, the bride and groom and the attendants are pretty much all you need to make a ceremony space look gorgeous and romantic. Throw in a bunch of chairs packed close together, maybe an aisle runner, and a few flowers up by the "altar," and I think you'll have the makings of a lovely ceremony. Then the rest of the evening can be in the house.

  10. Tell the venue your concerns, particularly:

    I did expect a wooden dance floor, even if it were tiny!
    *Ask for a dance floor. Explain that the carpet looks shabby in your opinion. Explain that you understand the amount of work they've done (even if you don't think they have done lots of work) but that you think a small dance floor would add immensely to the festivity.

    Also I would expect tablecloths which graze the floor. Ugly table legs should be neither seen nor heard.
    I LOVE the way you say this. I couldn't agree more. Ask for them to rent longer tablecloths. The worse they can say is no, right?

    A rather pathetic excuse for lighting.
    Ask if they have any more options, or if not, if they can provide you with LOTS of candles. Candles set a lovely mood. (Or if not candles, given they are probably petrified of fire, what about those "fake" flickering candles?)

    It generally screams cheap (and checking on the suppliers website, it is!)
    So don't be afraid to ask for more - like more lighting, the dance floor, longer tablecloths.

    Plan in advance. Then on the day, just go with the flow.

    Sorry you're having to go through all this. I'm just giving you the advice that I would do. Take it or leave it - but I hope you have a lovely party whatever you do!

  11. what do i say... we had everything in one big room: ceremony, cocktail hour, dinner, dancing, everything. very minimal rearranging required, just change the ceremony site to dance floor. and it was lovely. but i understand if you don't want that. i agree with the idea of having the cocktail hour outside while you rearrange the room to transform the ceremony into reception. good luck!

  12. I agree with petitechablis - the ceremony in the marquee. This would give you chance to arrange and decorate the 2 spaces how you want them the day before so you know everything is in place and won't be worrying on the day. You'll spend the least amount of time in the space you hate and you'll be so consumed with getting married you won't notice - you'll only have eyes for Bean after all!

    We're getting married at a beautiful-from-the-outside register office with a questionable interior but I honestly don't care - we'll be in there for 20 minutes and I don't think I'll be able to see through my tears! The reception venue, however, will be decorated by ourselves the day before - it's a complete blank canvas so needs it (but that's what we wanted). Your room is beautiful enough on it's own and I would think needs little decoration - just look at that parquet!!

    That kind of room is closer to your vision - a marquee is not. Are you able to have a couple of rows of long tables in that room rather than the circular ones?

    Oh Anna, I do feel for you. I hope everything works out - and as everyone says 'you won't notice on the day' but as a bride to be myself, I can't appreciate that at the minute either, even though I'm sure it's true!!!

  13. I was going to say how I thought you should definitely not use the marquee as it so obviously makes you unhappy, and suggest throwing cash at the problem and paying someone who kows what they're doing to oversee/undertake the room turnaround to make sure that you get the room that you want.

    However, after reading through the commments, I must say I do rather like the marquee ceremony idea of petitechablis. Loads and loads of flowers and some gorgeous you, and some gorgeous bridesmaids will totally turnthe marquee into a thing of beauty. Make sure you get some good heating if you go down that road though.

    Either way though, it will work, and all of your guests will be non the wiser that there was ever any other option....

  14. No chance of a different marquee? No? If not:

    pin up those drapes and let in more light
    buy more lights
    fairy lights
    coloured tablecloths
    and can you string anything from the ceiling?

  15. Ahh poor Na.

    imho unless you can address the issues with the marquee satisfactority with the venue, ditch it. It's fine but if it'll piss you off what's the point? That room is beautiful, the floor, the panelling, the fireplace, fab!

    My suggestion would be either to move the ceremony outside, or to the hall if you can or another room then you can dress the party room yourself before the day kicks off; or as you say have the ceremony in the main room, then move for drinks while the venue staff dress the room to your specifications. Just have a note in your programme and get a few confident people to help move the guests about. You *cannot* dissapear to light candles girl, they can pay someone to do it. If you're worried brief someone you trust to liase with the venue to make sure it's done. Personally my feeling is that the room is ornate already, all you need is flowers (fabulous) and candles (lots). I've always liked the idea of doing centrepieces of floating candles and flower petals but I'm sure you have a great plan already :D Hey - maybe the venue staff can bring in tables, chairs, cloths and table settings and the florist can do the decorating and candle lighting? In my opinion you don't need to rip down the curtains or hang stuff from the walls or ceiling (they probably won't let you anyway).

    Get everything organised in advance, be crystal clear with venue, photographer, florist and guests as to what exactly is going on, and don't bank on doing anything much on the day itself other than getting ready, hitched and then celebrating! Honestly, I speak the truth.

    My favourite wedding quote ever is from APW's Meg: "If you still believe in perfection you're not old enough to get married" so I think you're right to see imperfection as a not bad thing. (Grammar fail!)


  16. oh Anna - i am so sorry that you are disappointed again! to be honest, it really does sound like you hate this marquee. i think the room you have is gorgeous! it is obviously up to you , but if i were in your shoes now, and you dont want to look for another venue, i would use the room you have. you can take people out of the space for drinks after the ceremony and let the venue staff rearrange chairs and set up for your dinner and party etc. I have seen weddings like this before and didnt bat an eyelid. I would also agree with Rebecca that you really dont need to do much to this room. it is already lovely. i think you should go for it - use this gorgeous space to the max! then - just give yourself a bit of time relaxed in the knowledge that you have a lovely venue, you will have a great day, and dont worry about how to fix your marquee problem. good luck bird x

  17. Alas the stupid England only allows us to marry in one room of the house.

    I think it is time to say goodbye to the marquee!

  18. OH Anna, I feel your pain! A perfectionist myself, being faced with a less-than-perfect sitch with your wedding date so near? All I can say is this: whatever you choose, you are the ONLY ONE who will give a shit either way. And only before the actual day...because the only thing you'll see is your beloved on your wedding day. My wedding carefully executed? The place could've been on fire and I wouldn't have noticed. Besides, a good photographer will capture your loving, smiling faces and no one will remember any of the things that caused you stress :) Deep, cleansing breath. It's going to be fabulous! Don't stress the details, darling ;)

  19. Aw hon.

    Obviously, I can't tell you what to do - it's your wedding after all. But know this - shit like the curtains, or the quality of the floor covering, or the quality of a marquee *will not matter* on the day. I know, it sounds absurd, but unless someone actually dies at the ceremony, it will all be wonderful. Also, you have no idea how little decor is needed to make a place look lovely - your gorgeous guests will do most of that when they fill the venue. I speak from experience - for our UK shindig the only decor we had was a floral arrangement on each table. *No one* noticed the lack of adornment.

    Once your guests are fed, watered, and comfortable, you've done your bit. Then, once you're happy to be married, they'll be full of joy to share that with you. I promise you that.

    And huge hugs, my dear. Huge hugs.

  20. I actually really love the marquee. Think it looks classy and the chandeliers look nice.

    We rented a wooden dance floor by the square meter for our wedding and they delivered it to the venue. Cost about $250 - maybe could be worth a look?

    Also - no one will even notice the table cloths once they sit down. The only time you notice is when the photographer does the whole room with no one in it shot. Seriously - the amount of stress I had over bloody table cloths (ours were too short too, and the ones on the buffet table really needed an iron) - But in hindsight - none of it mattered in the end.

    Sorry it's stressing you out x

  21. I def think you should get rid of the marquee as it would totally annoy you all night.

    That said I didnt notice much but I think you would since its on your mind already.

    I do agree about the table cloths too!

    Your ceremony room is gorgeous and needs no decoration. While we did have chair covers, we just had flowers & things on the tables and no extra decoration.

    Hope you get it sorted so that you are happy with it.


So, I really love all the sweet and/or informative comments that you lovelies leave. Yet if you feel the need to be unnecessarily rude or offensive I will delete your comment and not feel bad about it. So just be constructive alright! Hugs to all you wondrous others.


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