Author Archives: sophia

Hampshire Wedding Fairs and Open Days – Sunday March 8th 2015

This post is for information only I am not exhibiting at these fairs nor do I have any involvement in the management of them.

Holiday Inn Eastleigh Wedding Fair
Leigh Road, Eastleigh, Hampshire, SO50 9PG
Opening times: 11 am to 4pm
Admission: £1

The Nostalgic Wedding Fair
Stansted Park, Rowlands Castle, Hampshire, PO9 6DX
Opening times: 11am to 3pm
Admission: £2 £2

Guildhall Winchester Wedding Fair
Broadway, High Street, Winchester, Hampshire, SO23 9GH
Opening times: 10.30am to 3pm
Admission: £2

The Square Tower Wedding Fair
Broad Street, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO1 2ND
Opening times: 10.30 am to 3pm
Admission: Free

Portsmouth Marriott Wedding Fair
Southampton Road, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO6 4SH
Opening times: 11am to 3.30pm
Admission: £1.50 per person (children free)

Test Valley Golf Club Wedding Fair
Micheldever Road, Hampshire, Hampshire, RG25 3DS
Opening times: 11am to 3pm
Admission: Free

Hampshire Court Hotel Wedding Open Day
Centre Drive, Great Binfields Road, Chineham, Basingstoke, Hampshire, RG24 8FY
Opening times: 10am to 2pm
Admission: Free

Hampshire Wedding Fairs and Open Days – Sunday March 1st 2015

Sunday March 1st 2015

This weekend sees a bumper crop of wedding fairs and open days. This Sunday across the New Forest wedding and reception venues will be open to visit so you can view their wedding facilities from 12 noon until 5pm. You can view information about all participating venues on the New Forest website.

Norton Park Hotel, Sutton Scotney, Winchester, Hampshire, SO21 3NB
Opening times: 11am to 3.30pm
Admission: Free

Aviator – A HOTEL BY TAG – 55 Farnborough Road, Hampshire, GU14 6E
Opening times: 10am to 4pm
Admission: Free

Warbrook House – The Street, Eversley, Hook, Hampshire, RG27 0PL
Opening times: 11am to 4pm
Admission: Free

The Manor Barn Open Day
The Manor Barn – Buriton, Petersfield, Hampshire, GU31 5RT
Opening times: 11am to 3pm
Admission: Free

Froyle Park, Ryebridge Lane, Alton, Hampshire, GU34 4LA
Opening times: 11.15am to 4pm
Admission: Free

Blacknest Golf & Country Club, Frith End Road, Blacknest, Alton, Hampshire, GU34 4QL
Opening times: 10.30 to 3.30pm
Admission: Free

The Pyramids Centre Wedding Open Day
The Pyramids Centre, Clarence Esplanade, Southsea, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO5 3ST
Opening times: 11am to 4pm
Admission: Free

The Mortimer Arms Hotel Wedding Fair
The Mortimer Arms Hotel, Romsey Road, Ower, Southampton, Hampshire, SO51 6AF
Opening times: 10.30am to 3.30pm
Admission: Free

Beechdown Wedding Open Day
Winchester Road, Basingstoke, Hampshire, RG22 4ES
Opening times: 11am to 3pm
Admission: Free

This post is for information only I am not exhibiting at these fairs nor do I have any involvement in the management of them.

Hampshire Wedding Fairs and Open Days – Sunday 22nd February 2015

Local wedding fairs this Sunday 22nd February 2015

This week you will be able to come and see me at Something Blue Vintage Wedding Fair at The Ageas Bowl. If you aren’t sure where to start with your wedding plans then pop along and have a chat with me. I’d love to see you.

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This rest of this blog post is for information only I am not exhibiting at these fairs nor do I have any involvement in the management of them.

Apollo Hotel – Aldermaston Roundabout, Basingstoke, Hampshire, RG24 9NU
Opening times: 11am to 4pm
Admission: Free

Open Day
Lainston House, an Exclusive Hotel – Sparsholt, Winchester, Hampshire, SO21 2LT
Opening times: 11am to 3pm
Admission: Free

Wedding Venue Showcase
Audleys Wood Hotel – Alton Road, Basingstoke, Hampshire, RG25 2JT
Opening times: 11:30 to 3:30pm
Admission: Free

The Langstone Hotel Wedding Fair
Northney Road, Hayling Island, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO11 0NQ
Opening times: 11am to 4pm
Admission: £1

Old Thorns Manor Hotel, Golf & Country Estate Wedding Fair
Griggs Green, Liphook, Hampshire, GU30 7PE
Opening times: 11am to 3.30pm
Admission: £1.50 per person (children free)

Highfield Park Wedding Fair
Church Lane, Church Lane, Heckfield, Hampshire, RG27 0LG
Opening times: 11am to 3pm

Norton Park Wedding Open Day
Sutton Scotney, Winchester, Hampshire, SO21 3NB
Opening times: 10am to 4pm
Admission: Free

Related Articles:

Amethyst Weddings is owned and operated by Siân Bowron.
Offering advice, planning and on the day coordination services for weddings throughout Hampshire including the New Forest.
Contact Siân for more information on services available and to book your no obligation meeting on: enquiries@amethystweddings.co.uk | 07818 226729

Hampshire Wedding Fairs and Open Days – Sunday 15th February 2015

Local wedding fairs this Sunday 15th February 2015

This post is for information only I am not exhibiting at these fairs nor do I have any involvement in the management of them.

The Solent Hotel & Spa – Rookery Avenue, Whiteley, Fareham, Hampshire, PO15 7JJ
Opening times: 11am to 3pm
Admission: Free

Macdonald Elmers Court Hotel & Resort – South Baddesley Road, Lymington, Hampshire, SO41 5ZB
Opening times: 11am to 4pm
Admission: Free

Portsmouth Guildhall Wedding Fair
Guildhall Square, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO1 2AB
Opening times: 11am to 3.30pm
Admission: £2.00 per person entry fee (children free)

Your Romsey Wedding Open Day
The White Horse Hotel & Brasserie, Romsey, Market Place, Romsey, Hampshire, SO51 8ZJ
Opening times: 1pm to 4pm
Admission: Free

Who will be your Valentine?

So what are your plans for the feast of Saint Valentine?
I’d always thought that Valentine’s Day was too commercial, with its overpriced novelty gifts and 3 course set menus with inflated prices. That was when I was single without a secret admirer in sight.

Do you remember your first crush?
I suppose it’s like any other “special” day when you’re single – it’s no fun and, quite frankly – it sits on the verge of being downright depressing. And I for one was not amused by the anonymous card left in my in-tray (and that of every other single woman) by the department lothario…after all, I was single, not desperate!

How romantic will you be on Valentine’s Day?
Whether you’re dating, engaged or married, do you use Valentine’s Day as an additional opportunity to spoil your loved one and show them they are special to you? It doesn’t need to be a big gesture – I’d be perfectly happy with a romantic card and my favourite chocolates. Hint hint. So whether you prefer a pizza delivered or a lovingly home cooked meal, the essence of Valentine’s Day is the romance… and of course, the excuse to do a bit of extra wooing!



Is that the sound of Valentine’s wedding bells…?
If you’re looking to add that extra romance into Valentine’s Day and are planning to get married on February 14th, I’ve put together a Pinterest board with some perfect ideas on how to create a Valentines themed wedding – why not see the whole board here? In the meantime, here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Pick some pretty pink and red blooms and you’re half way there. Whether you like vintage pink, pink ombre or deep red – flowers = romance and the bare bones of any beautiful wedding theme.
  • Choose some key words with romantic meaning and use these in your stationery and for those little decorative details. It’s all in the detail. They also make great photo props for your official photos and if you have a photo booth.

What are your plans for the feast of Saint Valentine? Do you have any secrets up your sleeve for turning up the romance? Maybe you’re already planning a Valentine’s wedding – if so, what are

What happened in 2014.

I’m not usually one for reminiscing, and starting a “new year with a new you” isn’t normally something I get consumed with, but 2014 has been pretty epic in my book. It will never match 2012 when my little boy entered the world but it got pretty close.

In January I pulled together some fabulous local suppliers at a photo shoot at Explosion Museum in Gosport for Alisha’s Events Photography. It was such a simple concept but the end results exceeded all my expectations. We were fortunate enough to get the shoot featured in Issue 44 of Your Hampshire and Dorset Wedding Magazine and Explosion Museum used some of the photos for an advertorial feature about the venue in Just Weddings magazine.

March saw the official change in the law allowing same sex marriages. This was even more poignant and personal because my first wedding of the year would be between two women.

Toward the end of April I assisted Hampshire Wedding Supplier with a photo shoot at Horsebridge Station near Stockbridge. Together with selected suppliers from the directory and photos taken by: Jenny Owens Photography and BC Digi Phot we put together some Victorian steampunk inspired loveliness. This shoot was so well received and was featured in Issue 46 of Your Hampshire and Dorset Wedding Magazine as well as on local blog Pistachio Blush and national blogs Bespoke Bride and Wedding Sparrow.

With the heatwave in June came the nuptials of Mrs and Mrs Heys. A beautiful sapphire blue and sunflower yellow wedding at Meon Valley Hotel and Country Club.

July kicked off with another shoot in Gosport for Alisha’s Events Photography this time at the Royal Navy Submarine museum. Using the WW2 anniversary as inspiration I helped put together a shoot straight out of the 1940s in mint green and poppy red. A pretty “make do and mend” afternoon tea party reception which could be easily replicated by any budding DIY bride.

Early August saw a Mexican fiesta inspired marquee reception at an old train station in the Hampshire countryside. Where the guests enjoyed an intimate wedding blessing in the open air, a Mexican buffet and ice cream from a trike.

 At the end of August my husband and I had a rare weekend away in a 4 star hotel in Buckinghamshire for his 40th birthday. He took full advantage of the ice bucket that housed our celebratory champagne and completed his ice bucket challenge in aid of MNDA.

The wedding of the year came in September when my school friend Jenny married Mathew at New Place. It was like a busman’s holiday but a pleasure to be a guest for a change.

In preparation for the launch of the new website I wrote the first blog post titled “FAQs – questions I’ve been asked as a wedding planner” and published it in November.

 Earlier this month the new look website was launched.

 So to summarise 2014:
3 photo shoots
3 weddings
3 family funerals
a big birthday
a welcome change in the law and a new website.

It hasn’t been an easy year by any means but glancing back at my achievements and the events of 2014 it has been one hell of a 12 months. I look forward to sharing 2015 with you all. Happy New Year

FAQs – Questions I’ve been asked as a wedding planner.

I have been asked various questions over the past 2 years about being a wedding planner and the services I offer. As I am currently re designing my website I thought I’d blog it first. These will also appear on my new website when launched, so watch this space.

Below are a selection of questions and answers about the service supplied by Amethyst Weddings. If you have any questions you’d like answered please do get in touch.

 1. Why would anyone use a wedding planner?
Busy work and social lives often mean that couples don’t have a great deal of time to spend together to research and organise their wedding. Of course not all brides want to relinquish their planning completely which is why the assisted/ partial planning service is my most popular. Don’t forget my experience and knowledge of the local area and local reliable and trustworthy suppliers are priceless. My services are very flexible and I don’t necessarily do the planning for you but with you.

2. What can I ask you to do?
Any wedding related task: no matter how big or small. If I can’t do it I will of course recommend somebody who can.

 3. Won’t it be really expensive?
No, not when my fees start at just £20 per hour. Cost does depend on how much you need me to help with. I base my quotes on the hours I would need to complete the tasks required. This is why I offer a no obligation meeting for us to meet and chat about your requirements. My maximum fee is currently capped at £995 for 2015 weddings.

4. What are you responsible for?
My responsibilities are the management and completion of the tasks given to me by the engaged couple. These are all outlined in my quotation and subsequent contract for my planning services. Any additional tasks would need to be discussed and agreed in writing by all parties involved.

5. Do we work with you or a team member?
Amethyst Weddings is owned and operated by me and only me. I work with you from start to finish.

6. How will you save me money?
I have negotiated discounts with certain suppliers that I pass on directly to my couples. I am prepared to negotiate prices for services on your behalf. I will also carry out DIY projects with you or for you to help keep your wedding costs low. I always keep my fee as low as I can. I also offer advice and support when you select services to ensure you prioritise your budget and don’t book any services on impulse.

7. I only want a simple wedding – is it something you can help with?
Not a problem – sometimes an extra pair of eyes and an unbiased opinion can help to keep you on track and within budget. It’s easy to get carried away when there are so many beautiful things and quirky ideas and services available.

8. Can you give advice on wedding etiquette and traditions?
Not all engaged couples are aware of traditions and etiquette associated with weddings, therefore I always ask if there are any specific wedding customs they wish to include or exclude. I am always on hand to advise and answer any questions about the content of your wedding day that will help make it truly special and unique for both of you.

9. Can you give me some recommendations from people whose weddings you have planned?
Testimonials and reviews will be found on my website once launched. I am always happy to talk to you about the work I have carried out for my previous couples. You can also find examples of my work here.

10. I haven’t a clue about themes, colour schemes, do you have any photos you can show me?
I have some examples of my work on my website. I also use Pinterest to create a mood board and pull together ideas for each of my couples, this means you can find your perfect wedding theme or colour and make decisions on likes and dislikes with the push of a button.

11. Will you be there on the day to sort things out?
Yes, if you want me there on the day to manage the wedding day schedule then I will include this in the price of my service in your quote and contract. If you don’t need me to attend this is then omitted from your quote and contract.

12. My mother in law to be has some very strong ideas about what the wedding will be like, how will you deal with that?
First and foremost I will be working with you, the couple. This includes all communication and meetings with you and not family members unless arranged otherwise. However having had first hand experience of similar situations I find it best to take an individuals opinions and ideas on board so they feel involved and valued rather than pushed aside and dismissed. Of course this doesn’t mean you need to action these ideas and suggestions but this generally helps negate any bad feeling before it arises and keeps the peace. Plus you never know you might like some of the suggestions and you will almost certainly know which ones you do not like. I am happy to act as a mediator in these circumstances.

13. What if something goes wrong? Are you insured?
I hold Public Liability Insurance but this covers damage and injury caused by myself. It does not cover or insure against any issues with the individual suppliers or services that you, the couple, employ. I would always recommend you take out wedding insurance so you are covered for all eventualities. I do, however, check that each supplier has suitable insurance cover whilst I am making enquiries for you.

14. Do you offer different options/packages?
I don’t offer set price packages simply because I believe this is too prescriptive. One service doesn’t fit all in my opinion. All my prices are quoted on the basis of the hours involved for me as your wedding planner. Individual service for each couple. I offer help including advice on wedding etiquette and sourcing wedding suppliers right through to full planning. Take a look at my services & costs page for more information.

15. How do I book and what payment methods do you accept?
A small non refundable deposit payment holds your date and confirms the booking. A payment plan can be arranged and full payment must be paid 14 days prior to your wedding day. I accept cash, BACS and PayPal.

16. How often do we meet up during the planning?
I will keep in regular contact via email and phone throughout your planning. You can contact me at any time to if you have a question or are worried about anything. Following our initial meeting I aim to meet with you at least twice during the lead up to your big day. These meetings are included in your quote for my services. Usually regular updates via email are sufficient with a progress meeting part way through and the last meeting approximately a fortnight prior to your wedding day. If you require more regular meetings we can discuss and arrange this prior to exchange of contracts.