From the moment you’ve announced your engagement (congratulations !) the pressure is on to plan the “biggest event”   you’ll ever host. Nothing quite prepares you for the emotional & exciting world of weddings; but with all the pretty & and not so “budget friendly” images from Instagram/Facebook and those “styled shoots” etc it’s important to take your time & slowly navigate your way!

wedding planning, organised bride, perth wedding planning

wedding organiser

With that said…you maybe an organised bride who knows exactly what she wants…or you may be a bride who has some sort of an idea…no matter where you think you may fit in there are still things that require some early management to avoid dramas & dilemmas down the line!

So as a wedding planner, it’s my passion & mission in life to make sure that all my couples maintain some sense of normalcy throughout this emotionally charged journey so that you can truly enjoy this wonderful experience of marrying your best friend can offer.

As with any list of things there are always loads to mention (probably too much ) but the main things to consider are a few of my “non-negotiables”:

Manage your guest list… To some this maybe a no brainer but this is where most of the expense comes from to host a wedding, the reception! More guests=more $$. Venue searches & guest numbers go hand in hand ~ so do your homework and research, research, research! Having smaller guests numbers will make the event more intimate; therefore allowing you to mingle more with your guests.

Affordability… Let’s face it…no-one likes to hear the words “budget”, “affordability” or “cost effective” when it comes to planning your wedding; however it is something that should be discussed as early as possible so that expectations can be managed by all involved when you begin your un-ending searches for all things weddings. On paper it’s ok to go over budget… as you will be comparing prices left & right ; however this is where you must also weigh up what’s “really” important ( & yes …everything is, right?) so that you can be marriage rich & not wedding poor!

What style of wedding would you like?… This is where a little bit of thought can go a long way. First & foremost your wedding should be a representation of who you both are so that your guests can feel the true essence of your celebration. Deciding on the formality or informality will also enhance this experience so it may be wise to start thinking about this as early as possible.

Jayde & Aaron - Caversham House Coordinated by Carte Blanche Wedding Design

Jayde & Aaron – Caversham House
Coordinated by Carte Blanche Wedding Design

Communicate & Negotiate!…Never underestimate the art  “communication”. I never really understood that saying growing up but it really is an art that takes a lifetime to master.  Although at times things can become quite overwhelming it’s the response to things that can often inflame a situation and that totally blows it all out of proportion. Find middle ground (negotiate & compromise) and learn to “pick your battles”.

Manage your expectations…As with any event, the level of expectation is heightened when emotions are at play when dealing with family & friends. Not only do you need to keep this in check but its wise to also be conscious of how you treat vendors & those around you during this new journey.

As I wrap up this blog post, I must not be remiss in mentioning that this is not a lecture but a priceless piece of knowledge that will hopefully assist you in becoming the most relaxed and appreciative bride you can be. Go into this wonderful journey with an open heart and mind and be content knowing that you will be spending a lifetime with your sweetie.

Wishing you all happy planning …Natalie xoxo



At CBWD offering an array of services to the most discerning bride in Perth is my passion. From planning to design and everything in between it would be a delight to meet and discuss your celebration. Let the planning begin…

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So you’ve set the wedding date and have gotten distracted by all things “pinterest” and you think to yourself: “Hmm, I better organise the wedding invitations!” Believe it or not unless you know exactly what you want and you know how much things cost you will be astounded by how much is actually involved in making your wedding invitation suite!

Believe me when I say there’s a lot more to setting the tone of your wedding event than with just pretty paper & a theme :-)

Here are a few of my top hints to consider when tackling the stationery part of your wedding…

Shine Wedding Invitations Mint Wedding Invitation Suite

Shine Wedding Invitations
Mint Wedding Invitation Suite

#1: Tantalise the tastebuds…

Weddings guests no matter how old always get excited at the prospect of receiving an invitation in the mail. Give your guests something to get excited about and a sneaky peek of what will be unveiled at your wedding. Setting the tone of your wedding through your colour scheme , fonts and paper stock is crucial and an excellent first impression for your guests, always remembering to make sure you follow the theme right through and that it represents who you are as a couple.

#2: How many invitations do I need?

This question is a common affliction amongst brides and brides-to-be as they are often not sure of the quantity of invitations they should order. As a rule of thumb you can apply this principle to safeguard yourself an added expense should you run a little short…if you have 100 guests you should order between 55-60 wedding invitations (usually its one per couple, however there maybe an occasion where there are a few singletons so this must be a consideration /its up to you but I think its also nice to give your bridal party a wedding  invitation as they often have partners attending / you should always have a spare few just in case and finally make sure to keep one for yourself as a memento :-)

#3: What makes up an invitation suite?

Depending on your budget and the extent of how far you wish to go with protocol and etiquette, the sky is generally the limit here! Usually it varies from wedding to wedding but if you were to go the whole nine yards well here it is… (a) save the date (b) bridal shower (c) wedding invitation (d) enclosures…rsvp/accommodation details/map/menu selections/bridal registry details or charity donation details or wishing well (e) personalised menus (f) table numbers (g) thank you cards (h) party favour gift tags/labels (i) envelopes (j) wedding programs

Classic wedding invitation

Classic wedding invitation organised by my own bride & groom

#4: Budget

Wedding invitations are usually a custom product, so with this comes a price tag (not that it is a bad thing, it just means its “extra special” ) There are some cost saving alternatives like sending out a postcard RSVP card instead of one with an envelope however its best to always speak to a stationery professional first as they are a wealth of knowledge and will steer you in the right direction. Additional costs can also include personalised envelopes and of course other items that require more time to do. Always bear in mind that this is the first thing guests will see as a preview to your wedding so be measured in where you wish to cost cut.

#5: Postage Costs

Now this is something one can easily overlook as we get carried away with all the prettiness of your wedding stationery, however it is important to consider that there are additional costs when posting invitations particularly if they are square, are part of an elaborate invitation box where weight is taken into account or alternatively the size of the invitation. Before settling on a particular style of wedding invitation be sure to consult your stationery specialist or Australia Post to ensure you allow for the extra expense of postage as this is definitely part of the stationery budget!

#6 Timing is everything

Due to wedding invitations sometimes being a custom product (depending on what you decide to do) you should anticipate the process taking 2-3 months and allow more if you are a little on the indecisive side. Engaging with your wedding stationery specialist from the beginning will ensure you have enough time for all the changes.

Classic wedding invitation

Classic wedding invitation organised overseas by my own bride & groom

#7: Proofread everything

PROOFREAD EVERYTHING…When spending countless hours over colours & textures and perhaps stretching the budget for that extra little something for your wedding invitations, it’s crucial that proof reading be done “NO EXCUSES”. Nothing would be more upsetting than if the names on the invitations were incorrectly spelt or the all important wedding details (location/date & time) were incorrect! Stationery specialists will always do their utmost to get it right, but they are only human and particularly if names are not of english origin for example it is definitely worth the investment of time to make sure you check everything!

 #8: Should I buy a sample ?

For the sake of a few dollars I would recommend you purchase a wedding invitation sample wherever possible as it will give you something to hold onto while your little masterpiece is in the making , not only that it will remind you of what you ordered and keep you in check till you pick up your long awaited “wedding stationery parcel”.

#9: Online vs In-Store – you decide!

Like with everything else when it comes to weddings there is the online & in-store debate! With online stores you do have the instant gratification of acquiring your invitations sooner rather than later (particularly if you go with something pre-made) and the cost maybe slightly lower too these days, however the down side to that is that you don’t know what the quality will be like or even what you see online is exactly the same as in your hand. Call me old-school but I do prefer face to face contact with stationery specialists (and I do know quite a few ~ perks of the job, I say!) because for me it is all about the experience. Nothing quite compares to someone getting just as excited as you are when choosing papers & fonts ~ adding that extra little bit of sparkle to the wedding planning process is always priceless :-)

#10: Design

The design process always begins & ends with “you”. From the moment you think about what you like/don’t like your wedding stationery specialist will ask a myriad of questions to properly gauge what you are envisioning for your special day ranging from your colour scheme/location of wedding/time of year and of course we can’t forget your never ending inspirations from “pinterest”.

Remember to always enjoy the process no matter what… as it is the journey that makes the destination so worthwhile :-)

Wishing you all happy planning …xx

Carte Blanche Wedding Design can assist couples on specific areas and any areas of wedding planning so please feel free to contact me as I am always excited to meet new couples and get them on their way to marital bliss xx
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Welcome to our “Weddings Unveiled ~ An Event Planning Masterclass”

Our Masterclass event is tailored to benefit “brides to be”“Mothers of the Bride”, “Mother in laws to be”, “bridesmaids” and any “helpers” enlisted on the big day!

No matter how far away your wedding day is or whether you have already settled on a date and begun the planning process, our handy hints & tips will be timeless & applicable to any stage of wedding planning. This is one of the most important events in your life and what better way to kick-start it the journey than with help from the experts in the know!

At our “wedding planning masterclass” we are all about making sure the “bride to be” is confident & relaxed knowing that all the details of the big day have been covered and no stone left unturned while still having the time to attend to other areas of your life.

wedding planning, organised bride, perth wedding planning

wedding planning, weddings, engaged couples, perth wedding planner, boutique wedding planner perth, perth wedding stylist

A sample of some of the wedding topics discussed will be:

  1. Where do I begin & What do I book first?
  2. What questions should I ask my vendors?
  3. How to talk “budget” with your fiancee & family 
  4. How to find your style
  5. How to assemble your “dream wedding team”

Our  fun conversational & realistic approach will instil confidence into the  most organised bride knowing that you are tackling this event with the best information at hand & at the same time never losing sight of the main reason you are on this journey… to marry your best friend!

Included in our insightful session will be some light beverages, delicious morsels & a goody bag filled with special offers to help celebrate this wonderful time :-)

Wishing you all happy planning …& we look forward to seeing you all at our event! xxx



  1. Full payment is required in advance of the event date to reserve your seat(s)
  2. Purchase 3 or more tickets & receive $25 off the original price
  3. Payment payable by Visa & MasterCard only
  4. There will no refund upon cancellation
  5. Your ticket is not transferable to another event
  6. Your ticket is not transferable to another person without advance notice
  7. Full name of main attendee & guest(s) required as well as wedding date/location(if applicable)
  8. Please note once payment is received & approved (all credit cards details will be discarded)
  9. To purchase tickets…please send an email to: or alternatively please call me on 0422-106-726
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You’re engaged and the fabulous world of wedding planning has hit you from all angles…”congratulatory” hugs from family & friends to co-workers and soon the next question on everyones lips apart from “have you set a date yet?” is “have you started looking at dresses yet?” As females, we all love to “shop” (ahem…some more than others ;-) and with that comes the trappings of purchasing “our first gown”; an experience to be treasured and shared with those nearest and dearest.

We all know, one of the many things we enjoy as “brides to be” in the wedding planning process is the journey to find “the dress”. We scour the pages of bridal magazines, obsess over Pinterest and everything in between until we come across “that dress”.

Well with that said, late last year I had the pleasure of catching up with Samantha Wynne stockist of some beautiful gowns at her boutique store in Mount Hawthorn, Perth WA who was kind enough in her busy schedule to set some time aside to catch up & meet with me to answer some of my questions relating to bridal attire; so here goes…


Samantha Wynne Boutique Mount Hawthorn, Perth WA

What is the SW experience?

We know every bride aspires for a wonderfully unique wedding and a distinctive dress that makes her feel extra special.  We try to ensure our clients feel very special at their personalised appointment but most importantly relaxed and comfortable to discuss their dream wedding dress. We try to ensure a high level of service and our clients have the full, undivided attention of our wedding stylists.

What price range are your gowns?

I’m asked this question alot! Our gowns start from approx $1500 to $15000. It depends on the designer, fabrics and the hours of work involved.

What is the process for a SW bride when she finds the right gown?

This is the exciting part! Champagne to celebrate, measurements taken & the six month countdown for the #arrivalofmydress.

Who is the SW bride?

The SW bride is a young woman who is confident in her decision making, but discerning at the same time. This is my 19th year in 2015 and I must say….I love all my brides, they are very classic, natural and have beautiful souls xxx

Image courtesy of Pinterest

Image courtesy of Pinterest

What is your opinion on trends in weddings?

On chatting with my clients it appears to be a “personalisation” theme. Sharing with their loved ones- their own personalities.  They want their weddings to be elegant & sophisticated but to be real with family & friends witnessing what the “marriage” is really about. From what I have heard & pinned on my Wedding Inspiration board on Pinterest; dining al fresco is popular, with tables left uncovered but finished with a simple vintage lace cloths, Floral centrepieces hanging, Roses, peonies, ranunculus..always dramatic and stunning to look at, and one that I love that is returning Champagne towers ( i had one of these at my own wedding) !!!

What do you see as a “trend” in bridal gowns in 2015?

Trends in bridal gowns are definitely, beautiful detailed beading, glamour of the roaring 20’s, beaded ball gowns,Lace gowns , Vintage lace gowns,  Floral details, Long sleeve wedding dresses, Illusion wedding dresses, Front slit dresses – brides in 2015 are very fortunate with choice!

“Thanks Samantha for that great insight into what the “SW experience” is as well as allowing us to be kept in the loop with the latest in bridal gown shopping!”

Before I end this lovely post, I’d like to share a few of my top tips on wedding gown shopping to enhance your wedding experience…

Confidence is “key”: when searching for the dress, it’s important to feel as natural as possible as this will enhance your “wedding glow” and allow you to be the radiant bride you dreamed of being on your special day.

Most dresses look really bad on the hanger:  Wedding dresses have a lot of detail that can totally weigh down a gown, making it sag on a hanger, so unlike shopping for normal clothes you won’t really know what a wedding dress will look like on you until you actually try it on. Keep an open mind and trust the consultant when she says “the dress looks better on the body than the hanger”.

The best time to book an appointment is on a weekday morning: Scheduling an appointment on a weekday morning (if possible) will ensure you have a more personalized experience and will help you not feel rushed, and  your appointment will actually start on time and that’s always good start.

Trying to please everyone: As a wedding planner & having the privilege of attending quite a few wedding gown appointments (one of my fave things to do!) it’s so important to limit the amount of people you wish to invite on this personal journey. The last thing you need is to be bombarded with opinions & disgruntled friends so to avoid any uncomfortable situations I suggest only 3 whose opinions you value the most & trust and who of course have your best interest at heart.

I hope that you have enjoyed my interview with Samantha and my top tips for gown shopping & that you embark on this wonderful & exciting time armed with more information with a little help from your friend…Natalie @ Carte Blanche Wedding Design.

Wishing you all happy planning…xx



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It’s that time in your life when a rush of engagement stories and excitement abounds, when suddenly you tap into your “inner wedding radar” (yes, ladies we all have one!) and you notice everything about weddings (bridal magazines, the magical world of Pinterest and endless to do lists!)

you're what

With that in mind, we warmly invite you to our wedding planning masterclass to get you started on your marital journey. We will debunk taboos & discuss all things weddings from the moment you get engaged to what questions to ask your vendors, how to deal with the complications of family dramas & even the “dreaded budget” talk.

As wedding professionals with years of experience in the wedding and event industry, our unique & fun format will enlighten the process by tackling those issues you want to know about but were too afraid to ask; so that you can kick-start your wedding planning the right way (your way!) and be the radiant bride you deserve to be.

Our event is a wonderful collaboration amongst wedding professionals including: Floral Designer, Tali  from Twigged Flowers, Wedding and Event Planner, Natalie from Carte Blanche Wedding Design with special contributions from Heart, Strings and Pretty Things and De La Rosa Cupcakes.

What we all have in common is our value in the importance of having a radiant, relaxed & organised bride on her wedding day,  knowing that all the preparation in the lead up to the big day has been taken care of with no stone left unturned.

Stay tuned for more exciting details coming soon… :-)

Wishing you all happy planning ahead & a wonderful marital journey…x

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heartstrings & pretty things

amy de la rosa

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