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The world of weddings can be a baffling one. To start with there is a whole new language to learn!

We’ve come to your rescue with a list of common confusing wedding words and their meanings so you can talk weddings like a pro.


Aisle the passage left between rows of seats at a wedding ceremony for the bride to walk down.

Bespoke made to order specifically for an individual’s purpose, not standard. For example a bespoke dress, menu or stationery item.

Bomboniere Italian word for a small gift given to guests, also known as a favour.

Bouquet a bunch of flowers, usually carried by the bride and her bridesmaids.

Boutonnière single flower or small spray of flowers worn by the male members of the wedding party on their lapel, also referred to as a buttonhole.

Bridal chorus traditional song played as bride enters, also referred to as here comes the bride.

Bridal recessional the formal exit of the bridal party from the ceremony.

Bustle a pad or frame worn under a skirt puffing it out behind.

Canapés small eats served with drinks prior to dinner.

Candy buffet a table of prettily presented sweet edible items for guests to help themselves to, often used as a favour by giving each guest a small bag to fill.

Canon in D a popular traditional wedding song played during the ceremony.

Cascade a traditional type of bridal bouquet in which the flowers cascade downwards from the bride.

Centrepiece display of décor in the middle of the table such as a vase of flowers or candelabra.

Charger plate a decorative plate placed at each place setting. Starter and main plates will be placed on top of this. Also referred to as a base plate or service plate.

Coronet a small crown of flowers traditionally worn by flowers girls.

Corsage a small spray of flowers worn by female members of the bridal party, pinned to clothing or on the wrist.

Damask a rich, heavy fabric with a pattern woven into it often used for tablecloths.

Fascinator a woman’s light, decorative headpiece consisting of feathers, flowers, beads, etc. attached to a comb or hair clip.

Favour a small gift given to guests.

Fishbowl a round clear glass bowl to hold flowers or a candle.

Gazebo a small garden structure that the bride and groom will stand under or in front of during the ceremony.

Lawn games adult games to be played on the grass outside, often during pre-drinks, such as boules and croquet.

Marriage officer the officiate of a marriage ceremony, this person conducts the ceremony and has the capacity to legally formalise the marriage.

MC an abbreviation of master of ceremonies, a person who presides over your wedding reception introducing speakers and activities.

Mock-up an example set-up of one of your guest tables to demonstrate the intended décor ahead of the day.

Naked cake a tiered cake with no or minimal icing on the outside, leaving the sponge and filling visible.

Nosegay a small bunch of flowers, also referred to as a posy.

Oasis a trademarked name for wet floral foam, used for flower arranging. It soaks up water like a sponge and acts both as a preservative to prolong the life of the flowers and a support to hold them in place.

Palette a range of two or more colours used in your wedding décor and stationery.

Paranymph gender neutral word for attendants such as bridesmaids and groomsmen.

Place name the small card place at each place setting with each individual guests name indicating where they should sit.

Place setting the cutlery, glassware, napkin and décor set out for one person at the table.

Pomander a ball of flowers, often carried suspended on a loop of ribbon by flower girls, or hung to decorate the ceremony area.

Pre-drinks drinks served to guests after the ceremony and before being seated for dinner, most traditionally champagne.

Receiving line collection of people including the bride and groom gathered in a row to greet guests at a wedding and receive their good wishes. This is a very formal practise that no longer often takes place.

Service provider a person working to provide a service at a wedding such as a DJ or photographer, also referred to as a vendor.

Stationery the printed paper items used at a wedding such as invitations, menus and place names.

Tablescape an artistic arrangement of décor items on a table which may or may not include flowers.

Tier a layer of cake. Traditional wedding cakes consist of two or more increasingly smaller tiers.

Vendor a person working to provide a service at a wedding such as a DJ or photographer, also referred to as a service provider.

Votive a small decorative candle holder.


Allow us to help you make sense of your big day. For more help with getting your head wrapped round your wedding contact us to schedule a viewing of our gorgeous venue.

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