Photo Credit: Angel M

Today’s officiant interview is with Nelly Grange of wedOtahiti in the tropical paradise of French Polynesia! Enjoy:

Tell us a bit about yourself and your company.

I am a certified Wedding & Event Planner, Green Wedding Professional, wedding insider and blogger in the islands of Tahiti! wedOtahiti is an independent wedding planning company based in Moorea – Tahiti. Launched in early 2014, wedOtahiti strives for developing destination weddings to the islands of Tahiti, offering professional wedding planning services and since December 2014, Wedding Celebrant services.

Read the full interview after the cut!

How did you get into wedding officiating?

As a Wedding Planner I quickly realized that many of my couples were looking at having a simple yet meaningful non-binding ceremony while in Tahiti (whether they did have a legal wedding there, or not) and had close to no option. I therefore graduated and certified as a Life-Cycle Wedding Celebrant, the first ever in the islands of Tahiti.

Photo Credit: Angel M

What’s your favorite part of the job?

Since I develop and write personalized ceremonies that recognize my couples’ unique personalities, and are all about them and their love stories, it always gets very emotional on the day. Seeing my clients in tears (of joy, of course) and knowing I was able to make their vision of the ceremony come to life is very rewarding.

Photo Credit: Helene Harvard

What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned, and would pass along to other new wedding officiates just getting started?

I am just starting out myself as a Celebrant, but my best advice would be to get to know your clients and understand them. I will never template my ceremonies and always come to the table with no agenda. Every couple is different, every story is different, so every ceremony must be different.

Photo Credit: Helene Harvard

What are your hobbies or non-work-related activities?

When not working on fabulous weddings, you will most likely find me hanging around my garden with my Hubby, my dog and the cat… I love to travel the world and have already visited over 20 countries… there are lots of destinations and places that remain on my bucket list either with some trekking plans or scuba diving explorations in mind.

Photo Credit: Jean-Philippe Yuam Photography

Any great stories from a wedding you’ve officiated?

I officiated a wedding on a very remote island where the couple contacted me just a week prior to their planned wedding date, and less than 3 days to departing from Los Angeles to Tahiti! They have had no luck in finding what they were looking for (as I previously mentioned, options for a Western-style ceremony were close to non-existent until I started my celebrancy practice) and they got to the point where they were extremely frustrated and desperate.

They had planned this fantastic vacation in one of the most beautiful places in the islands of Tahiti, but could not find a celebrant to officiate their dream wedding. I planned and wrote the ceremony for them and we ended up the following week holding the ceremony on the reef side, with waves crashing in the background, at sunset time, all what they had wished for. Lots of tears and emotions I can tell you.

Photo Credit: Helene Harvard

What advice would you pass along to couples planning their wedding?

Look beyond beaches… of course you will want photos taken on the beach side – who wouldn’t want all those shades of blue immortalized on photos wearing wedding outfits – but Tahiti has so much more to offer.

Are there any trends that you absolutely love or would love to see brides leave behind?

I love flowers in general, flowers are timeless. A trend we have seen over and over again are the wedding signs for the ceremony that say “Please choose a seat, not a side”. Although I very much like signs, which are great for directions, this one in particular has been overused, thanks to Pinterest. Just like a ceremony is personal to a couple, a welcome sign should read a personal message from the couple, too.

Thanks Nelly! For more information about wedOtahiti, please visit their WeddingLovely Vendor Guide profile or head straight to their website.

Do you have any questions or comments for Nelly? Add them to the comments below!

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