Happy New Year friends!
This year, we’ve made a new years resolution to try or learn something new each week. Kicking off the year with our first blog post, we’ve done just that. Speaking to bilingual Celebrant Yvonne Beck we learnt that sustainability has no bounds, and we loved talking to her about how she encourages couples to incorporate sustainability in their weddings. Have a read through our Q&A with the lovely Yvonne below.
Tell us a little about yourself
I have always loved working with people, and spent many years in customer focused business, and also in education and training, helping others to move forward in their lives. Two years ago my husband took a job in Berlin and we moved. I was brought up bilingually, and have enjoyed living here and also offering Bilingual Ceremonies to couples, as well as ceremonies in English.
source: www.celebrantinlondon.co.uk, captured by www.herz-flimmern.com
What inspired you to become a celebrant?
I was invited as a guest to a Celebrant led wedding in Australia many years ago. I never forgot the whole experience which was so personal, and was held in a vineyard overlooking the ocean, at twilight. I had no idea weddings could be so intimate, personal, filled with expression, emotion… it was a real catalyst and when I was looking for a change of career I looked around and found the Fellowship of Professional Celebrants, based in Worthing, and trained with them in 2011.
What is your favourite part about the job?
I love creating something unique – I always loved storytelling and romance so this was a perfect combination – two people in love, wanting to express themselves in a genuine and sincere way. Allowing them the freedom to be themselves, and to commit to each other using their words, not something that is used by thousands of others. It is definitely awesome to stand in front of that couple when they are saying their personal vows to each other. I write from the heart, and am honoured each time I have a couple ask me to be their Celebrant.
source: www.celebrantinlondon.co.uk, Tian and Andre captured by www.matthiasfriel.de
How are you working or living sustainably?
I actually do quite a lot of travelling and for weddings in Berlin I will use public transport but I usually have to fly to the UK for ceremonies there. When I fly I do try and choose airlines that have sustainable practices and also support the environment. Plane travel to cover long distances is a way of life that we have become very used to as other forms have either dropped off or become untenable for economic reasons (both by companies and by individuals). In the UK I will hire small eco-friendly cars with low emissions. I don’t own a car in Germany.
Tell us about how you encourage your couples to incorporate eco-friendly practices in their weddings?
I have become more aware of the use of plastics and also the damage that lanterns and balloons can do, to the environment and to wildlife. I now try and research more eco friendly processes and will personally not take a ceremony where there are butterfly or dove releases, Chinese lanterns or helium/plastic balloon releases, and invite couples to check out eco friendly catering options using either reusable cutlery or sustainable catering. Also where flowers are concerned, to ask couples to choose floristry that is in season, is locally sourced, and who don’t use florists foam. I will encourage couples to look for and re donate their crockery to charity shops (we had an Afternoon Tea Theme and I sourced all my crockery and cutlery from Charity shops and donated it all to a local Hospice Visitors Tea Room afterwards). Using leave and petal confetti instead of plastic and also considering how to reduce the waste at their reception. I have a small Pinterest Board where I pin these suggestions and ideas and also encourage Vegan or Vegetarian menus and Cakes.
What is your best piece of advice for a newly engaged couple?
Allow yourselves to enjoy your engagement as a time of taking the next step in your relationship. Enjoy calling each other Fiancé and Financée instead of girlfriend/boyfriend, and then begin planning the wedding together in a mindful way – consider a realistic budget, and consider the impact your choices will have.
To find out more about hiring Yvonne Beck as a Celebrant for your wedding, head to: