Thank you for joining ecelebrants.com.au – we welcome you and hope you will enjoy the experience and gain many benefits. Please read the guidelines and watch the helpful videos on the website before uploading information to your page. We are determined to achieve excellence with our new website and ask all our members to please consider and respond accordingly. Second best is not something we are aiming for!
‘How to upload information and edit your page’. Please read this before you start.
We encourage our celebrants to explore the website and find the free resources for our members.
Plus – the following members bonus items will be delivered by email:
- Free ebook – Sealed with a Kiss. Note this book is advertised on Facebook and on the website and couples may ask you to send them a copy of the ebook. This ebook is exclusively for the use of eCelebrant members.
- Discounted Insurance for members – OAMPS
- Discounted OPD with AssentTECS for 2016.
What does ‘Good Service’ mean to you? Part One
First impressions are invaluable, particularly in the current competitive environment. Here are some tips for celebrants when responding to an enquiry and arranging the initial meeting with a marrying couple.
This will be of interest for couples when selecting a celebrant for their wedding – one of the most important life events you will experience, so you will want to be sure you have selected a celebrant who will give good service. Celebrants should …
1. BE RESPONSIVE
A prompt response to an enquiry is always appreciated. We may think patience is a virtue, but with all the technological aids on hand these days – there is really no excuse for tardy responses. Failure to respond quickly may leave the enquirer feeling unwelcome and they may think ‘this celebrant isn’t interested’. This can negatively impact your celebrant business.
2. BE WELCOMING
Congratulate the enquirer on their forthcoming marriage and be gracious enough to thank them for contacting you. Have your diary at hand – let them know you are or are not available. If you are unavailable, wish them ‘every happiness’ and be prepared to recommend another celebrant you know you can rely on (build networks).
3. BE INFORMED
Ensure you have all the most up-to-date information available to answer the enquirer’s questions. Don’t second guess. Ensure you are familiar with the latest version of Guidelines on the Marriage Act and you are familiar with the Celebrant’s Code of Practice.
4. BE ACCESSIBLE AND ASSURE SAFETY
Many celebrants have established their own home office for the private and confidential interview(s) with marrying couples, remember to ensure the couple are welcomed into a safe and comfortable environment. Some celebrants are prepared to travel to the couple’s home for the interview(s) in which case the celebrant will need to negotiate suitable arrangements. Celebrants are discouraged from meeting couples in public areas, such as cafes in order to ensure privacy and confidentiality during the interview.
5. BE APPROACHABLE
The celebrant must have good listening skills – most of important of all is knowing how to ask questions and allow the couple time to answer. In dialog, good listening skills include compassion, understanding, interest, enthusiasm. When the celebrant gains an accurate picture of the couple’s needs they are then in a perfect position to suggest appropriate options.
Part Two – to be continued : Working with your celebrant to develop a personally meaningful ceremony.
‘HOW MUCH DO YOU CHARGE FOR A WEDDING?’
Celebrants – do you find that question is often the first you are asked?
As we all know, celebrants do not have to charge a regulated fee and, importantly, fees cannot be fixed between celebrants or celebrant groups. However, I would like to make a comment on behalf of professional marriage celebrants regarding fees charged, as I don’t believe the majority of marrying couples understand the responsibilities a marriage celebrant is required to fulfil.
To begin with, a marriage celebrant is legally responsible for the validity of a marriage. They also aspire to provide a deeply rewarding and meaningful marriage ceremony which couples will remember and cherish for their rest of their lives. We (celebrants) frequently hear that our cost is LESS than that of a wedding cake!
The Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages fee is the bench mark: in Perth, the basic BDM fee for a marriage is $355 with an additional $44 charged for a copy of the registered marriage certificate. It is worth considering that the Registry (BDM) conduct marriages between the hours of 10am to 3pm on weekdays, not weekends or public holidays. The couple and their witnesses travel to BDM to lodge the Notice of Intended Marriage and attend the marriage ceremony.
On the other hand celebrants must travel to the couples chosen wedding venue to conduct the ceremony, thus they must maintain a reliable vehicle. A celebrant must provide a secure facility for storing legal documents; an office for interviewing couples, or be prepared to travel to the couple to complete the required pre-marriage documentation. Celebrants must have a wardrobe of suitable attire and be well presented at the ceremony; they must purchase and maintain their own PA system to ensure all the guests will hear the ceremony. Most celebrants either purchase and maintain a website or purchase a listing on a professional celebrant directory. The majority also belong to a professional association and pay annual fees which include insurance.
On top of that, the majority of celebrants have paid a considerable amount of money to be trained and since last year, even after qualifying in Certificate IV in Celebrancy, they now pay $600 to the government to apply to be registered as a marriage celebrant. Annual costs are $240 for registration plus around $180 for Ongoing Professional Development.
Consideration of those costs, divided by the number of weddings the celebrant might expect to conduct annually, added to the benchmark figure – well, that’s something each celebrant must decide.
In my personal opinion I believe the celebrant’s fee should not be discounted. Celebrants do not ‘discount’ the quality of the service they provide. A wedding will survive without a wedding cake – but there is no wedding without a celebrant!
When choosing a celebrant, what questions should a couple ask?
Here are some suggestions:
- How will you assist us in creating a meaningful, personalised ceremony?
- Will you assist us in selecting poetry, readings, significant and relevant symbolism?
- What procedure do you suggest for consultation prior to the ceremony?
- Do you offer an on-site rehearsal prior to our ceremony?
- What time will you arrive to our ceremony?
- Will you dress in accordance with our chosen style of wedding?
- Do you have a PA system to ensure our guests will hear the ceremony?
- Will you show us a standard agreement including a statement of your fees clearly outlining all the services you offer, what is expected of the couple and the costs involved?
- What is your refund policy in case of the unfortunate need to cancel?
Of course, the ultimate question should be … can you provide me with a copy of the ebook ‘Sealed with a Kiss’? Only a member of eCelebrants will be able to do that!
Famous last words of wisdom from the Bride’s Father
- “The first moment I saw her in her wedding gown – she radiated such beauty and joy – I thought my heart had skipped a beat.”
- “Flooding my mind were images of the little girl, her tiny hand in mine – her first day at school – the day she lost her first tooth.”
- “I hope he (new husband) knows what he’s got himself in for – seriously, you have grown into an amazing young woman – just make sure you keep reminding him of that.”
- “My little girl in white satin and lace – the day has come to let you go and watch you shine.”
- “You are the richest blessing your Mother and I ever received. No longer our little girl but our pride and joy.”
Do you remember what your father said to you?
Celebrants with Style
Thank you to Ros – our guest blogger from ‘Colours and Style’
How to revamp your wardrobe.
Spring is a great time to consider that wardrobe clean out.
5 top reasons why
- It will be easier to choose attractive and professional looking outfits
- You will save money.
- You may have less clothes and more outfits to wear
- You will look more professional and attractive
- You will be able to create a more stylish wardrobe.
As an image consultant I find that revamping my clients closets using the colour system helps immensely to design a functional and stylish wardrobe.
A great investment is to have your colours done. You’re outfits will be smart, ageless, stylish and attractive on you.
Having outfits in your colours only is the best way to dress. It will eliminate the whole drab and dull look that is often hard to avoid.
This way you will always find it will be so much quicker and easier to put together a look that is professional and attractive. You will have the confidence you need on the job.
You don’t want to have the stress of what to wear on the morning of the wedding event. It will be so much easier to be prepared and to find lots of outfits you feel comfortable in. You will feel more confident if you look the part. You also will find you will get more appointments if you look more professional and attractive. Most celebrants are chosen on their appearance.
The secret to your image success is always colour. Many people believe that black is chic, stylish and it goes with everything. Unfortunately this is not the case. Many people look drab, tired and older in black. Not a good look when you are conducting a wedding ceremony. If black is not your colour avoid black and eliminate it completely from your wardrobe. You will find colour far more refreshing. Another powerful tip is to avoid warm colours. They are also very aging on EVERYONE. Colours like peach and apricot. They may be pretty colours, but not pretty on you.
Sort your garments in groups. Pants, tops, skirts, dresses etc.Also group colours together. This makes choosing much easier as well.
Put outfits together and take photos on your camera or post your outfits to your personal pinterest page for easy reference.
Try changing the outfits up with different jewelry or shoes, jackets or coats.
For more information about colour and style contact Your Colours and style: www.yourcoloursandstyle.com. au or call 0413875471
I received a lovely message from one our newest members, Kathy McKimm from Gippsland, Victoria, to tell me how delighted she is with the eBook ‘Sealed with a Kiss’. Kathy also said she found it very quick and easy to upload data and a photograph to her page.
Kathy, thank you for all that positive feedback! I wish you every success on www.ecelebrants.com.au
A huge thank you to all the brides, bridegrooms and celebrants who have commented kindly about the new eBook ‘Sealed with a Kiss’.
I’m sorry to say that it is not available to purchase right now – the book is a gift from eCelebrants to their couples and each celebrant receives the eBook when they join the directory. We hope to see some more smiling faces of celebrants on the website soon.
Joining is easy – come along and enjoy the benefits.
Why Are Your Wedding Vows So Important?
Wedding vows are the very heart of the ceremony. This is the opportunity of a lifetime for the Bride and Groom to exchange sincere words of love and devotion to one another witnessed by their close family and friends.
The wedding vows should be the highlight of the ceremony so it is worth spending plenty of time ensuring you choose words which truly express your love for one another; your hopes and dreams for your future and your pledge to respect honour and support one another for the rest of your lives together.
If you are getting married in Australia, your celebrant will advise you about the legal requirement for certain words to be spoken – the ‘legal vow’ – which must be spoken before your personalised, romantic vow to one another.
When it is time in the ceremony for the couple to exchange their wedding vows, it is highly recommended that you turn to face each other, hold hands and look into each other’s eyes. This is such a precious moment – a moment you will treasure forever.
In the words of Oscar Wilde: ‘Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden … The consciousness of loving and being loved, brings warmth and richness to life that nothing else can bring.’
If you are looking for inspiration to craft your unique wedding vows and ceremony, you will find this free ebook extremely helpful: ‘Sealed with a Kiss’ just ask one of our celebrants about the book.
Our eCelebrants are here to help you and looking forward to hearing from you.