People We Love: Debra Fallowfield Jeweller

All you need is love and … some wisdom from a wedding professional.

Now, I know a lot about weddings, but not everything, so “People We Love”is a series of interviews with wedding professionals, who will share their stories and wedding wisdom.

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Meet Debra Fallowfield Jeweller

Business Name: Debra Fallowfield Jeweller, owner of PRECIOUS by Debra Fallowfield in Port Chalmers, Dunedin.

Tell us a bit about yourself and your business: Self confessed magpie – lover of shiny bright things.  I am what you would call a custom or bespoke jeweller. A bit like an Atelier, I pretty much make all my jewellery by hand to order.  My speciality is “one of a kind” engagement and wedding rings. I have a very distinctive style – which is totally unique compared to most of the jewellery you would find in an everyday jewellery store.

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I pride myself on good old fashioned customer service, with no pretensions.  Feel free to ask a million questions!

Choosing an engagement, wedding or commitment ring is a huge step to undertake and best done with a knowledgeable jeweller.  Having been in the industry for over 15 years you can have full trust in me for this precious task.  Custom work is all about you, so communication is essential.  My role is to make it all as easy and stress-free as possible.

Quick sketches are usually run up, options discussed (don’t worry if you’re out of town or even in another country, I work with clients worldwide) For grooms, I carry a cool dynamic range of men’s rings with the option of custominsing.

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What do you love about your job? I love what I do, because it’s very creative.

What do you do in your spare time, hobbies/interests? Spare time… what’s that???? I am booked up pretty much 12 months of the year for custom work.  Ok… in the very little spare time I have, FOOD, I love cooking, gardening, all things organic, sustainable-fashion, music, dance and travel (one day!)

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What one thing do you wish every wedding couple knew? That custom made rings are often less expensive than mass produced ones – AND the quality is far superior.

Any wedding trends you love, or would love to see disappear? Mason jars, meringue dresses, badly fitting suits, bands that play crappy 80’s music.

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Any great/interesting stories about working with a couple? I work with couples all over the world – from All Blacks (the biggest fingers I have ever seen) to Set Designers at Weta Workshop, wanting symbols they designed inscribed into the back of rings- or couples recycling Grand Mothers diamonds.  Every couple that comes to me has their own story and they want me to create their own heirlooms because they want something unique and special. You don’t get unique and special buying from Michael Hill or Pascoes.

What two pieces of advice would you give a couple planning their wedding? Plan ahead, shop around and ENJOY the time, from the planning to the day … oh, and relax.

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One insider tip to pass on? Your wedding is about you what YOU and your beloved want. It’s not about anyone else.

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The lovely lady behind the lovely jewellery – Debra Fallowfield.

If you loved reading about Debra and love her vibe you can contact her here:

Website: www.debrafallowfield.com

Facebook: Facebook/DFJeweller

Instragram: @debrafallowfieldjeweller

 

What’s a Ring Warming Ceremony?

All you need is love and … maybe a ring warming ceremony.

 

You may have heard the term ‘ring warming ceremony’ before, or you may never have heard it described before, and are unsure of what it is, and whether it’s something you’d like included in your wedding ceremony.

What is a ring warming ceremony?

A ring warming ceremony is a special and simple way to include all your guests in your wedding ceremony.  A ring warming is when you give all your guests the opportunity to hold and imbue your wedding bands with a silent wish, blessing or prayer for your marriage.  The rings are passed among your guests during the ceremony for each of them to touch, hold and essentially ‘warm’ before you exchange them with each other.

Why have a ring warming ceremony? 

A ring warming ceremony is a really unique and nice way to include all your guests in your wedding ceremony. My thoughts are that it is best suited to smaller weddings, with less than say 50 guests, only because if you have a large amount of guests the rings may not get around to everybody during the ceremony and then you have the awkward situation of not everyone getting their turn, or having to pause the ceremony while you wait for everyone to get their turn, not ideal.

I have incorporated this concept into numerous more intimate ceremonies and it has been very successful. You can see the look on the guests faces as they hold the rings and say a silent wish, many of them closing their eyes while they do so.  Very sweet

And the rings are actually very warm when they get back to the couples ready to be exchanged. I encourage couples to tie the rings together with a piece of ribbon, matching the colour scheme of the wedding or in a small bag, that way everyone can actually feel and hold the rings.

How do you incorporate a ‘ring warming ceremony’ into our ceremony?

Each time I have peformed this ceremony, I prep the ring bearer or who ever will have  the rings on the day, (at the rehearsal, another reason to have a rehearsal, there are many more reasons explained here Rehearsal? Hells yeah!! ) so they know what’s going on. At the beginning of the ceremony, after the initial welcome I explain to the guests what’s going to happen, and then the ring bearer or best man hands the rings to the first person and then they start and then we start the ceremony, generally everyone will have their turn before the ring exchange part of the ceremony and then the last person who is holding them gives them back to me. Simple and lovely and very meaningful.

How does the celebrant explain the ‘ring warming ceremony’ to my guests?

I start by inviting the guests to take part, by using these words, or similar ones:

“Today I invite you all to take part in the ring warming for Brad and Angelina. Please hold their wedding rings for a moment, warm them with your love and a silent wish for Brad and Angelina. When the rings are exchanged they will contain in their precious metal, that which is more precious, that which is pricelss – your love.”

A ring warming is just another way you can infuse more of your personality into your wedding ceremony.

 

What does a best man do?

All you need is love … and a great best man.

It’s an honour to be asked to be a best man.  It can be heaps of fun but also comes with a lot of responsibility.  Here’s a run down on what a best man does.

Before the wedding

  • Plan the stag party – probably the most fun aspect of the role.  It’s your job to plan what/when/how much for the stag party.
  • Tux/suit hire – it’s your job to help the groom sort out his suit for the wedding, whether he’s going to be buying or hiring.  It’s also your job to organise the other groomsman to make sure they’re all there when the suits are selected and for fittings.  That way you’re all matching.
  • Rehearsal – Attend the wedding rehearsal, usually the day before. Pay special attention to where you’ve got to be, when you have to be there. You will also need to ensure all the groomsman know where they have to be.
  • Help the groom on the wedding day – It’s your job to make sure you take the stress off the groom on the big day.  You need to help him dress, make sure he has everything he needs, and then give him and all the groomsmen a quick once over before you arrrive at the ceremony.

During the wedding ceremony

  • Distribute the boutonnieres (buttonholes) and make sure everyone is wearing them.
  • Hold the rings.  You either need to have the rings right from the beginning or you take the rings off the ring bearer.
  • Sign the marriage licence. You may be asked to sign the marriage licence to make the marriage official.  Make sure you bring it up at the rehearsal if the officiant doesn’t mention it.
  • Escort the maid of honour or bridesmaid out of the ceremony.

At the Reception

  • Best man toast – Perform the best man toast/speech at the reception.  Probably the most nerve-wracking part of the role.  There’s heaps of info on the internet about how to nail your best man speech.
  • Read the telegrams – or in today’s day and age, read any emails, tweets, facebook updates for the couple.
  • Dance with the maid of honour-It’s your job to get the party started once the first dance of the bride and groom is underway.
  • Decorate the getaway car.
  • Help to decorate the honeymoon suite with the maid of honour.
  • Suits back – take the grooms tux/suit back to the hire shop, if the couple are leaving for their honeymoon straight after wedding.

The gist of the role is that you are the right hand man for the groom, you are standing beside your best mate/brother to support him on one of the biggest/best day of his life. It is a honour to be asked, so make sure you are happy to fulfill the role to the best of your abilities before you say yes.

 

Real Life Wedding – Helena and Michael

ringsAll you need is love and … a real life wedding.

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Helena and Michael

16 – 3 – 2013

Port Chalmers Town Hall, Dunedin, New Zealand

Wedding Dress: Bought Online – I did have some issues with the dress not being entirely the same as the picture on the internet site, and the flowers, one of the features I especially loved about the dress, needed to be re-made by a seamstress before being refastened to the dress.

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Bridesmaid Dresses: EziBuy

Photographer: Robert Jones

Hair: Petrina McFarlane  MakeUp: Lisa Leslie

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Grooms Attire: Volcom Stone Suit (Pinstripe)

Shoes: No 1 Shoes

Celebrant: Grace Ockwell

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Flowers: Artificial (Black with a  diamante pin)

Cake: Stir Cupcakes, choc and red vanilla cupcakes

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Catering: Just Essence

Best part of the day: Exchanging the wedding vows. As well as exchanging wedding vows between the two of us, Michael also presented Catie with a special signet ring and made some promises to her, she didn’t know what he had prepared so that made it extra special to both her and I. There wasn’t a dry eye among the guests at that stage of the ceremony. Definitely a special moment among the three of us.

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Anything you would do differently: Video the day.

Ideas, Inspiration: Bridal Magazines, Internet, Pinterest.

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Colours: Black and White (Michael’s sports team colours)

How did you pick your wedding party: Sisters and close friends.

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Best piece of advice: Don’t sweat the small stuff. Don’t try and keep everyone happy, you won’t.  It’s your day so don’t worry who’s toes you might step on

Tips for brides: Do everything, as much as you can online! Bargain hunt (shop around) Enjoy the day, because it’s over in a flash.  Don’t focus all your energy on the wedding day, it’s only one day, the marriage is for the rest of your life.  Get plenty of sleep the night before.

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Anything that didn’t go according to plan: the boys got lost on the way to the photo location, and the fridge broke down at the reception.  Was definitely the best day ever.

All you need is …advice on how to propose.

All you need is love and advice on how to propose.

 

So this is it, she’s the one you want to spend the rest of your life with. Now it’s time to think about how to propose.  Proposals are one of those things that women love to tell everyone about, when they show off the ring, so you want to make it great.  Here’s some do’s and dont’s on how to propose like a boss.

  • Decide if you want to ask her parents – some women may find it sexist and/or offensive if you do this, others will love it, and it could score you some great brownie points with the in-laws.  If you’re ready to spend the rest of your life with her, then you should know the answer to whether you should ask or not.
  • Figure out whether you should buy the ring or let her choose one – you will have a pretty good idea whether she wants to pick her own ring or not. Talk to friends, even take one shopping with you, to get the perfect one.
  • Decide on the day – Do you have a meaningful day? (anniversary of first meeting etc) or birthday or Christmas. There’s definitely pros and cons to choosing a special day, you can do it in front of family and friends who can help you celebrate. On the other hand you will always share the day with another special occasion, which could take the shine off it.
  • Decide location – do you have a favourite, meaningful spot you want to use? Try to get a sense of whether she would want a big public proposal or something more private.
  • Getting down on one knee is always a good idea.
  • Clothes make the man – Be dressed in your best, suited for the occasion and location.  Remember there will probably be photos/selfies, so you want to be looking your best.
  • Don’t over-complicate it – the best proposals are the simple, heartfelt ones
  • Calm your nerves – practice what you want to say. Remember she will probably remember what you say for the rest of her life, make it count.

 

  • Big no-no’s – Don’t propose while you’re drunk, or hungover. Don’t hide the ring in food, so many ways that can do wrong. Don’t break the law to propose. Don’t propose to stop her being angry at you in the middle of a fight.

This is a once in a lifetime deal, make sure you give it the thought/planning it deserves, and good luck.