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Ask the experts

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your East Midlands 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@youreastmidlands.wedding

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

Hot topic: Winter weddings

Have a perfect winter wedding with our expert advice

A winter feast

A winter feast

Q. I'm having my big day in winter and would love to have a festive menu. What would you suggest?

A. Karen Kemp says: Karen says: There's nothing quite like a winter wedding, none of the concerns that often accompanies a spring or summer do where you're worrying about the weather!

Seasonal nuptials mean roaring log fires, candlelight, dark atmospheric afternoons and best of all being able to serve your guests rib sticking, warming, utterly delicious food! Here's a winter wedding Kemp and Kemp-style:

You could set the scene with a warming shot of pumpkin soup with toasted sunflower seeds and parsley puree. The following choices will all make pretty perfect starters: game terrines with spiced fruit relish, roasted butternut squash and sage ravioli, potted shrimp, cheese scones with sage and onion butter or wild mushroom and tarragon tart.

For a deeply warming main course, there's multiple choices to pick from including bouef bourgignon, game casserole with dumplings, pot roast chicken with cheese mash and garlic gravy, good old bangers and mash, or a steak and ale pie with deep rich gravy.

Then you just have to have the damson and sloe gin crumble (it's the law) with oodles of vanilla custard. Your guests will thank you for this meal, believe me… though there may have to be some pretty energetic dancing afterwards.

Festive bunch

Festive bunch

Q. For my winter wedding I want flowers that look festive but I need a bouquet to withstand the weather, what blooms can you suggest?

A. Laura Peltell says: Laura says: If you want that festive look, we recommend red roses as your main flower! Not only the ultimate symbol of love and romance but they also look beautiful against a white or ivory wedding dress. We favour red Naomi roses for winter weddings as they stay fresh for longer in the cold and they have a sweet scent. Complement the Naomi roses by teaming them with hypericum 'Tomato Flair', an evergreen plant which produces beautiful red berries in the autumn, and skimmia 'Rubella', also evergreen, which has clusters of burgundy-coloured buds in the winter. If you wanted a wider variety of flowers, we recommend red spray roses 'Mirabel' and red tulips 'Ile De France'. For your foliage, use eucalyptus 'Cinerea' and Scots Pine because they both smell amazing, and the pine especially evoke festive feelings.

Wrap up warm

Wrap up warm

Q. I'm worried about being cold on my wedding day for the outside photos, how can I get around this?

A. Angela Robson says: Angela says: It's surprising how much excitement and nerves can stave off the chill. However, it's always good to be prepared! Task a bridesmaid or friend to be on hand with either a shrug or jacket that you can wear as you walk around your venue to capture the best images. It's easy to think that the photographer may do this for you but remember with all their equipment to carry around and the need to assess where the best light is. There's been an increased trend for capes, which we particularly adore for winter weddings but if this feels too much of a statement then consider a small wrap. Our Richard Design fur wrap with the satin ribbon has been especially popular with winter brides but for some extra sparkle a beautiful diamanté clasp is also available.

Winter Decor

Winter Decor

Q. I'm excited for my winter wedding but I'm stuck on the décor, I want to make my venue cosy and festive. Can you give me any ideas?

A. Ruby Adds says: Ruby says: As lighting is so important at a winter wedding I love to use candles wherever I can. Adding tall taper candles onto the dinner tables creates soft warm lighting, if real candles are not permitted source good quality faux candles.

Depending on the ceiling height of the room I would use them in either tall candelabras or small single stem candle holders. Using reflective surfaces in your venue will bounce the candlelight around the room beautifully, large mirrors can be hand-painted to create welcome signs or a table seating plan.

If you have a fireplace in your venue make it a real feature by adding a large floral arrangement to the mantelpiece. If the fire can not be lit then fill the hearth with lots of pillar candles in various heights, this will create a beautiful feature in the room.

Using sequin table runners and metallic tea light holders on the tables will add a lovely bit of sparkle.

Think about your reception drinks too, you don't need to stick to the traditional flute of champagne, why not serve hot chocolate with Baileys in vintage teacups? Include a small shortbread biscuit or a mini mince pie! It'll warm everyone up as they arrive at your beautiful wedding venue.

Don't forget your outside space, use festoon lighting to create a zone, add a firepit with a tub of large marshmallows to toast, and a basket filled with lots of soft blankets. This will create a cosy feature that everyone will be able to enjoy throughout the evening!

Styling on your big day

Styling on your big day

Q. We're looking to tie the knot at Christmas but we don't want the typical Christmas paraphernalia for our styling, so how can we get around this?

A. Sarah Dixon says: Sarah says: I would advise all brides not to focus on Christmas, it's your wedding day and the styling should reflect your own personal preferences not be overshadowed by the Christmas period.

Many palettes and themes are not seasonal and look sensational at any time of the year, think geometric, classic white wedding and why not add a pop of colour with a rustic bohemian theme?

In 2020 it's all about going big, think oversized balloons, giant centrepieces and large floral displays – not a hint of Santa in sight! Be creative with your lighting, think about experimenting with exposed bulbs, chandeliers and candles. Tis the season to be jolly, but also perfect to rock your wedding in style.

Through the lens

Through the lens

Q. Tying the knot in winter is exciting but I'm worried because it gets dark very quickly, what are the must-have shots?

A. Daniel Hughes says: Daniel says: Winter weddings can be amazing and although I prefer to use natural available light, I think it's really important to get great photographs in any lighting condition. I highly recommend working with your photographer over your timings to make sure you use the available light for any key shots you want such as group shots and couple portraits. There are no right or wrong answers to which shots your have during this time, especially as some weddings may all be indoors due to the weather. I often have two short portrait sessions for couples, regardless of the time of year. Where possible, I plan with my couples to capture that golden hour light just before sunset. However it can rain, so even during the summer months, my evening portraits can be inside using the best of the venue and creating great light.