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MY STORY

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An official hello from me! I'm Stephanie - hopefully, soon-to-be trusted with the important role of being your wedding celebrant. I made the shift to the celebrant field in 2022, so, I guess I'm relatively new on the scene. However, although years of experience is invaluable, I feel that I am a strong competitor to those who have been in the industry for a long time, as, to my knowledge, I deliver a service that no other celebrant is currently offering. The lovely testimonials from the couples I have worked with in my short time of operating, confirm the beauty of what I have to offer. Before I explain what that is exactly, I'd like to honour the fact that, as it is my job to tell your story, I shall follow suit and tell you mine - providing a bit of background as to how I made the transition to celebrant. 

I have always been an avid writer, from the moment I could formulate a sentence on a page, writing became my "thing", my escapism, my greatest passion. From an early age, my Greek Cypriot mother would call me "a master of the English language" with such pride to all that who would listen (mums eh!?). Little did I know that she was sowing the seed to what would eventually become not only my livelihood, but a core part of who I am. I went on to study a degree in English Literature and Philosophy at The University of Hertfordshire and shortly after a masters in Psychology. In 2012, at the somewhat early age (by today's standards) of twenty-five, I fell pregnant with my first child - Paul, (currently nine, going on twenty odd). This put any further plans of studying on hold (I was hoping to go on to the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology). Fast forward two and a half years and baby number two arrived, Lily (currently six and who, with some complications from birth, challenged me in ways I never imagined). As I spent my days in the bubble that is motherhood, consumed by everything that comes with that - it suddenly dawned upon me: I needed more. I had given my absolute all to my children and lost myself, spiralling down a rabbit hole where motherhood had started to define me. I was forced to do a bit of soul searching and to return to that forgotten seed - the one that had been planted, but yet to be nourished - writing. 

During lockdown (and after facing redundancy from a job that could no longer operate), I set up my first company - an online gift shop 'Your Once Upon A Time' (www.youronceuponatime.co.uk), where I started to sell my bespoke poetry. The idea was simple, to take information from my clients (in their own words) and to transform those words into a beautiful rhyming story (ready framed). Business took off almost instantly and I never imagined that my writing would be regarded as such a talent to so many - a skill that would touch the very core of my clients. After receiving endless thank you messages, detailing how my words had reduced people to tears, I finally started to appreciate that I truly had a gift. My seed was thriving and I blossomed into the writer I am today. I took a step back to analyse what my best selling poem was and how I could take this a step further. Although I write for absolutely any occasion (birthdays, mother's day, memorials etc.), I noticed that my bespoke 'Our Love Story So Far' poem was far out-selling any other. A  poem which documents a couple's journey, from their first encounter, up until the present day. The majority of these were commissioned by women for their male partners, and boy do I love hearing of a man crying (happy tears, of course!).  It wasn't until July 2021, where I wrote a bespoke love story for my brother's wedding (which I delivered at the ceremony), that I came to the realisation that I would make a fantastic celebrant. Not only did my words reduce the whole congregation to tears but I rekindled a past love of mine - public speaking. There is no greater fulfilment I've felt (in a job), than having a room full of people hanging off of your every word, feeling and seeing the raw emotion and moments of laughter on all who are present. Shortly after, I was asked to officiate at a friend's wedding which then lead on to the birth of 'Once Upon A Wedding'. I have learnt that an excellent celebrant is one that is naturally skilled and has mastered three things: listening (to their clients' every want and need, memories and feelings about their partner), writing (after all, we are professional story-tellers, our words are our key tools) and execution (the fine art of delivering the most important speech of the day). Although I am at the beginning of my celebrant journey, I am confident that I possess these qualities and that I offer something truly unique and magical. 

OFFERINGS

WEDDING CELEBRANT

My wedding celebrant service is, as far as I know, the only one of its kind. From our initial meetings and any follow up emails, I'll be busy collecting as much information as possible about your journey together as a couple. I'll be asking you questions which probe you to recall your first encounter, first and follow up dates, key milestones, achievements, sentimental memories, quirky habits of your partner, their qualities and of course the odd story that still makes you laugh. This information will be used to write your very own bespoke, rhyming love story, entitled 'Our Happily Ever After - The Tale of (name) and (name)'. Once the poem is complete, you'll have the opportunity to approve it (and make any edits if you so wish). Alternatively, you can choose to leave it as a surprise - or - you can opt for just one of you to approve the poem or even nominate a trusted guest to approve. The choice is ultimately yours but there is absolutely nothing like seeing the raw emotion on the bride and groom's face whilst I deliver your speech. I can guarantee tears and laughter (from you and your guests!) and that people will be talking about your ceremony for many moons to come - and so they should, after all, it's the most important part of your day. As a gift from me to you, I also include a framed copy of your ceremony speech as a thank you for giving me the honour of being your celebrant. 

To read more about the process please click here.

To request a quote please click here

SPEECH WRITING

My speech writing service works in a similar way to what has been detailed above. We'll liase via email where I will collect information regarding your subject matter and this will allow me to write a first draft of your rhyming speech. You'll then have the opportunity to suggest any edits or add any key moments that you may have missed. I am so confident with my writing that I offer unlimited edits throughout the process and my track record shows that I very rarely have to make any major changes. Whatever the occasion, I can guarantee that your speech will leave your guests - well - speechless! 

To read more about the process please click here.

To request a quote please click here

WEDDING STATIONERY & GIFTS

STATIONERY

  • Handmade invitations - a design will be agreed upon first and a mock up will be posted to you for approval (please note, invitations are currently being offered to weddings of 100 guests and below),

  • Table Plan - to suit your theme/colour scheme.

  • Place names - hand lettered calligraphy coming soon! (if you so wish).

  • Favours - unique, personalised favours to coordinate with your theme/colour scheme.

  • Guestbook - personalised and including a short personalised poem (if you so wish).

        To request a quote please click here

GIFTS

Show thanks to those that supported you through your journey. We've got a whole bundle of sentimental treasures over at our sister company, 'Your Once Upon A Time'. From bespoke framed poems, personalised framed poems, poem cards and our incredibly popular personalised poem candles - there really is no better way of showing your appreciation.

Visit 'Your Once Upon A Time': www.youronceuponatime.co.uk 

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