Wedding trends for 2021

If you’re looking for 2021 wedding inspiration, look no further.

As we all know, 2020 was an unprecedented year that caused numerous wedding cancellations and forced many couples to reschedule – multiple times! So, whether you’re newly engaged and just starting your planning journey, or a couple looking at their options due to cancellations, we’ve got you covered.

Our expert wedding planners share 2021 trends and predictions for the year ahead to inspire your wedding planning.

Micro weddings

Of course, the most notable trend is micro weddings. The pandemic caused plans to be turned upside down, but many couples decided to reduce their numbers and go micro to avoid waiting. We still don’t have an exact date for when large-scale weddings will resume, so for now the micro trend is here to stay.

Smaller ceremonies have been on the rise over the past few years, and Covid-19 aside, they are a perfect option if you want a beautifully intimate day with your nearest and dearest. They’re also great if you don’t want to spend a load of cash or want a more laid-back celebration.

Wedding dancing

Sustainability and ethical practices

Sustainability has been a big consideration for many couples in recent years, and this is set to continue throughout 2021. Examples of how couples are choosing to reduce their eco-footprint include using foam-free flower installations, cutting back on waste, using bio-degradable confetti, finding wedding dresses made using ethical practices, and sourcing their wedding cakes from local companies that use seasonal, local ingredients.

Virtual ceremonies

With micro weddings on the increase, so are virtual ceremonies. For some, micro weddings mean having to compromise on who can attend the celebration in person. That’s where virtual ceremonies come in. Thanks to the world of technology, you can now live stream your wedding ceremony, so everyone you love can be together digitally to celebrate your big day.

Remote wedding planning

Currently, wedding planning is completely remote and will continue to be this way for some time. With wedding fayres cancelled and wedding planners working from home, couples will need to take care of arrangements over the phone or online.

Here at the Brewery, we offer remote wedding planning to assist you with your online wedding preparation and help make sure everything is in order. Whether you want us to take charge, or you just need support with some of the more demanding tasks of planning a wedding, we can help online or over the phone. We can assist you with everything from the menu and flowers, through to the décor and evening entertainment.

Virtual venue tours

Choosing the perfect wedding venue is important, and under normal circumstances you could visit the venue to look around before booking. Following 2020, the trend is to explore venues virtually. Whether that’s a tour that has been created by a venue, or perhaps a facetime call with your wedding planner, navigating your way round will be slightly different this year.

Here at The Brewery, we have a virtual tour online that takes you around all of our stunning rooms with clickable interactive buttons, providing interesting facts and highlighting key features and areas.

wedding dance

Open speeches

With smaller wedding receptions, you may have more time during the day as you don’t have as many guests to socialise with. It’s a great idea to open up the speeches and instead of just hearing from the father of the bride and the groom, pass the microphone around to anyone else who would like to say a few words.

Double celebrations

Future planning celebrations is another trend that goes hand-in-hand with micro weddings. Due to the shake up the pandemic has caused; many couples are now choosing to say ‘I do’ now and planning to throw a big party once restrictions allow us to again. Of course, the restrictions won’t be around forever, but if you want to declare your love as soon as possible, there’s nothing stopping you having double celebrations!

Guest dress codes

Most couples have a vision of the aesthetic of their wedding before they start planning. With the shift towards micro weddings, it’s easier to have control over the aesthetic and have a dress code with limited guest numbers. Rather than gowns and formal suits, many couples are choosing a more casual style of formal wear and providing guests with preferred colour schemes.

Ambient lighting

From fairy lights and candles to marquee letters and signs, ambient lighting can completely change the feel of your wedding and set the tone for the day. Whether you change the lighting at different stages of the day, change the colour or have fun concept lights, you can add a new depth and dimension to any venue.

Going ‘au naturel’

Another trend continuing on from last year is for brides to opt for a more natural look. Think luminous dewy skin, soft shades of eyeshadow and nude lips. It’s all about looking like yourself and letting the dress do the talking.

wedding makeup

Classic and traditional

We predict 2021 to be the year tradition returns, with classic and timeless dresses, traditional speeches and sentimental moments that are personal to the bride and groom.

Weekday weddings

With many 2020 weddings postponed or cancelled, there will be an influx of weekday weddings as they move to 2021. Not only that, more couples are opting for weekday weddings as both venues and suppliers are often cheaper.

Pastel shades

Pastel shades are popular year after year for weddings, especially during spring/summer. However, this year, it’s thought colours such as sage green, lilac and pastel pinks will overtake the classic blush and ivory themes.

Go big, or go home

If large wedding celebrations resume in 2021, it’s thought couples who have had to postpone and reschedule will adjust their plans to go even bigger. From adding extra people to the guest list and arranging more entertainment, couples want to celebrate bigger and better than ever before.

dance sign

Plan your wedding with The Brewery

If you’re still in search for your perfect venue, we’d love for you to take a look around our virtual tour of The Brewery. Located in the heart of London, The Brewery is steeped in history and you can choose from several beautiful spaces to host your wedding ceremony and reception.

Milena, our wedding manager, will help you to create a celebration as unique and individual as you and your partner. With six event spaces, a delicious selection of food and drinks, we will help you create a celebration that you and your guests will never forget.

Congratulations on your engagement. We look forward to hearing from you.

Meet our Wedding Planner, Milena Gorska

From a happy-crying Mother of the Bride to cheese tower wedding cakes, our Wedding Planner, Milena Gorska has seen everything. Here’s the first part of our interview with her to find out all the behind the scenes tips and secrets about weddings at The Brewery.

Being a wedding planner is no easy job, but it’s one our Wedding Planner, Milena Gorska, loves. Whether it’s making sure the day flows smoothly, organising a drone to act as a ring-bearer, or bringing the Mother of the Bride to tears with the wedding venue decoration (or all three), Milena is on hand to make sure your wedding day is perfect.

Let’s go behind the scenes with her to find out more about her role in your big day.

Milena Gorska, wedding planner at The Brewery in London

About Milena

Inspired by rom coms from a very early age, Milena decided that she wanted to find a way to create magic and romance for brides and grooms in real life. After planning her first wedding in a Central London hotel, she realised the satisfaction she felt was far greater than that for a corporate event, which set her on her career path to where she is today at The Brewery.

Q. Why did you choose to work at The Brewery as a Wedding Planner?

A. “My initial thoughts about The Brewery were – it’s so unique, has so much history and from my first look at the venue, I knew you could do so much, it had so much versatility to it. I love how there are so many venue spaces which are all different and can be used for weddings of a smaller, intimate scale or for huge, grand celebrations. I can really use my creativity to work wonders in the spaces.

“Planning a wedding at The Brewery is assisted greatly by the fantastic teams we have working here. The team of chefs is led by our Food Director, Tom Gore, who puts together mouth-watering seasonal menus which always please wedding parties. I always have guests at weddings approaching me to speak to the chef, they say it is the best wedding food they’ve tasted! On the wedding day, everything runs so smoothly with an efficient logistics and operational team led by an event manager, who just gets it and know how important the day is.”

Wedding at The Brewery
Credit: Epic Moments Photography

Q. What do you enjoy most about your role?

A. “My favourite part of the role is seeing months of planning, emails, phone calls and meetings put together into one special day – teams of production and lighting, florists, the band, menu and wines, and decor all coming together, and the room being set up so beautifully. The best bit is seeing the couple’s reaction when they see the room set up for the first time and they are simply overjoyed.”

Q. What’s the most touching wedding moment you’ve witnessed?

A. “Each wedding has its own touching moments, whether it’s when the Father sees the Bride, or the Groom sees the Bride walking down the aisle, or a beautiful speech by the Groom, but one significant touching moment I experienced was with a Mother of the Bride. She arrived at the venue to see the room set up for the ceremony, and as soon as I opened the doors she burst into tears. She was taken aback by the beauty of the room, also bearing in mind the last time she had seen the room it was empty. She was stunned and so overwhelmed saying “It’s so beautiful, I can’t believe it.”

“During the run up to the wedding, all my concentration is on the bridal couple, but it is moments like that I realise how special this day is not only for the couple, but for Mum who will see her daughter get wed! I even shed a tear myself.”

Wedding ceremony in the King George III at The Brewery
Credit: Michael Hall Photography

Q. Are there any trends you love or any that you want to leave behind?

A. “I absolutely love to see colours – dusty rose, berry pink or coral are all great colours which work. Colour blocking is a trend that is gaining momentum and I have seen it used for ceremonies, bridal bouquets and stationery which is a nice and vibrant touch to a wedding.

“What I think will always work fantastically at The Brewery is unique and statement lighting. Lighting is essential to creating an atmosphere and using uplighters, lanterns, festoon lighting or fairy light walls completely transforms our venue – you can feel the romance and dreaminess.

“Other trends I love seeing are cheese towers – yum! They never get old. Balloon walls and helium balloons with tassels or greenery have really taken over this year. Couples have ditched overdoing it with flowers and are now decorating their ceremony aisles and dinner centrepieces with balloons or creating huge balloon walls as photo backdrops.

French made cake

“A new(ish) aspect I am seeing for weddings is women making speeches. More and more I see the bride doing a welcome speech or the bridesmaids getting in on the action which is lovely to see!”

“A complete no-no is chair covers, ditch these and use our lovely limewash Chiavari chairs.”

Q. What tips can you give couples in the midst of planning?

“I would definitely say not to rush any of your planning! I know the excitement can take over and I am sure everyone is asking you, “Have you booked your venue, have you chosen a caterer, have you got your dress, am I a bridesmaid!?” It can all seem very overwhelming; however, I recommend taking the planning slow, own it and split your tasks within a workable timeframe to ensure you have control over everything.”

“Enjoy every aspect of wedding planning and don’t just see it as ticking off a ‘To Do list!’ Remember, this is the most important day of your life and months of planning will turn into one magical day. And when it does seem like a lot to handle, call me, I am there for a reason!”

Bridesmaid dresses
Credit: Gomes Photography

Here’s the second part of our look behind the scenes with Milena Gorska, Wedding Planner at The Brewery. Discover the top wedding trends for 2020, what Milena brings to every wedding, and the most unusual request she’s ever had from a couple.

Q. What order of priority would you give the different aspects of the wedding day?

A. “This is totally dependent on the couple and what is most important to them. From the initial stages of planning all the way through to the final meeting before the big day, I get an understanding from our conversations of what are the most important aspects for them. It is different every time.

“Most couples want the day to be effortless and to flow well, making sure their guests have a great time – this is managed by our efficient staff making sure that we keep to their schedule of the day, the service smooth and the glasses topped up!”

Q. What’s the most unusual thing you’ve been asked to organise?

A. “I had a couple who were into science, or more specifically planets. They wanted to create a solar system theme in one of the venue spaces, with planets hanging from the ceiling. That was a cool idea! For the ceremony, they wanted a drone as the ring bearer.”

Floral arrangement at Brewery wedding
Credit: Jeff Oliver Photographer

Q. What’s the biggest lesson or piece of advice you’ve received?

A. “This year I met with Kelly Mortimer, who is a wedding venue expert. With a background in luxury London hotels and destination weddings, Kelly has two decades of experience in the industry and she shared with me all her tips on wedding days and how to make them a success.

“One of the training sessions was on time management – and trust me with Kelly’s tips on how to structure my day, I have discovered how to have so much more time!”

Q. How do you find out what a couple wants for their wedding?

A. “From the first viewing, some couples already have a clear picture in mind of what they want and what is most important to them. I will have many planning meetings along the way – a good opportunity is at the menu tasting when the couple bring their parents or the Maid of Honour or Best Man and a lot of executive decisions can be made.

Couple getting married at The Brewery
Credit: Laura Lees Photography

“During the planning stages, I also share a wedding checklist with the couple, which is a lengthy document covering all aspects of the wedding day, and all the information we need to make sure we make their day perfect.”

Q. What do you make sure to have with you on the big day?

A. “A coffee, a clipboard with the wedding function sheet and lots of positivity. I always start the mornings listening to an upbeat track and having a dance to gear me up for the day ahead. Wedding days are long days, but when you love what you’re doing it doesn’t seem like work. And it’s great to see how it all comes together after a year of planning.

“As the day goes on, I like to stand to the side and watch all the special moments – speeches, cutting of the cake, the first dance and then seeing all the guests having a boogie on the dancefloor.”

Q. What are the big trends that are coming up for the 2020 wedding season?

A. “I am sure there will be more popping up towards the end of the year, but now the big one is sustainable weddings. With environmental impact and climate change being one of our everyday topics, it’s no surprise the modern Bride and Groom want to incorporate this in their special day. Many couples use recyclable wedding stationery and ensure their venue plays a role in sustainability by limiting food waste and moving away from single use plastic – something The Brewery has done!

“Another trend I see coming into play in 2020 is the use of more greenery, living plants and foliage for centrepieces, ceremony arches and bouquets. We seem to be drifting away from colourful, bold tall centrepieces. Green is a classic shade that goes with everything!”

Centerpiece at a Brewery wedding
Credit: Adam & Hannah

With six fully customisable event spaces, a talented team of chefs and the capable hands of our Wedding Planner, Milena Gorska, we’d love to make your wedding day the best day of your life at The Brewery. If you’d like us to host your special day, simply get in contact with us here.

How to prepare for a tech conference

Equipment for a tech conference

A tech conference should be an enriching and educational experience. After all, it’s not often you get a multitude of tech experts, pioneering companies and visionary speakers under one roof. Preparation is the key to making sure you get the most out of a tech conference, so it pays to think about how you will maximise your time there.

If your chosen tech conference is fast approaching, you will have already booked your place, researched the speakers you most want to see and worked out your plan for the day. If not, take a look at our article on getting the most out of a tech conference to get started.

There are still a few things you should do to make sure you’re completely ready. Here’s how to prepare for a tech conference, logistics-wise.

What to wear to a tech conference

It’s always a good idea to consider your outfit ahead of a big professional event, especially seeing as many of us are now used to working from home in our comfiest sweats.

Tech is a hugely innovative and forward-thinking industry, so it doesn’t hurt to make an effort with your wardrobe so that you look at home amongst your peers. That said, it’s also a pretty casual and creative sector, so very formal or traditional business wear probably won’t set the right tone. There’s rarely (if ever) a tech conference dress code to stick to, so many people tend to go for clothes that are comfortable yet still professional.

When it comes to what to wear to a tech conference, smart casual is likely your best bet, such as dark coloured jeans (no rips or holes though) and a semi-smart shirt or t-shirt. Flat shoes may be better than heels, since it’s likely you’ll be on your feet and moving around the conference space for much of the day. Trainers are fine, as long as they’re clean.

If you’re still unsure, take a look online for event photos from previous years; these should give you an idea of the kind of outfits attendees usually wear. Of course, you can always ask the event organisers, who should be happy to help.

What to bring to a tech conference

Once your outfit is sorted, it’s time to think about what to take with you to the tech conference. You might think the only thing you’d need is your phone, but there are a few other items that can really help you make the most of the day once you’re there.

Hand sanitiser and face covering

Top of the list for tech conferences in 2020 and 2021 has to be hand sanitiser and a face covering. While the event organisers will no doubt provide hand sanitiser throughout the event space, it never hurts to have your own supply so you can ensure you’re always as safe as possible.

Likewise, you’ll be made aware of any face covering policy ahead of the tech conference you’re attending. We’d recommend taking a face covering regardless though, so that you have the option of wearing it should it make you feel more comfortable at any point during the day.

Business cards

If you have them, it’s always a great idea to take a handful of business cards along with you. This may seem a little antiquated for a tech conference, but it’s easy for someone you’ve met to forget your name or company in a sea of new meetings. If you really want to impress, consider using a digital business card app to generate a digital version you can share with other people’s devices at the touch of a button.

Whether physical or digital, business cards enable you to pass on all the info new connections need in an instant, without having to scribble anything down on a napkin or scrap of paper. The last thing you want is them to draw a blank when they go to add you on LinkedIn!

Snacks and water

Make sure to check whether food and drink will be provided on the day, and if not, think about taking a sandwich along with you or seeing if there’s somewhere nearby you can pop to for lunch. Either way, it’s a good idea to take some light snacks and a bottle of water with you to keep you going. Don’t forget a packet of mints or gum too – bad breath is a major networking no-no.

Notebook and pen

If you’re planning on attending any talks or presentations during the tech conference, a notebook and pen is a must. Of course, you can take notes on your phone or tablet, but many people find taking freehand notes easier and less restrictive in the moment, especially seeing as you can sketch out ideas in any form you like without changing medium.

What’s more, taking notes on a device can easily be mistaken for texting or surfing the web, so old-fashioned notetaking can help you engage with the speaker.

Laptop and charger   

It might sound at odds with the point above, but we’d recommend thinking about taking both a notebook and your laptop with you to a tech conference. You never know when there might be an interactive element or hands-on workshop that might require you to have a laptop to take part, so it can pay to be prepared. If you do take your laptop with you to the tech conference, don’t forget the charger!

Phone charger

Speaking of chargers, your phone charger is an essential for any tech conference. Many event venues will provide free charging zones to enable you to stay connected and online all day, so make sure you’re all set to take advantage.

Alternatively, you could take a portable phone charger with you so you can charge on the go.

A lightweight bag

With all of the above in tow, you’ll need a lightweight bag to carry it all around with you. A handsfree bag will suit a tech conference best, something you can wear without having to hold onto it, such as a backpack or satchel with a built-in laptop sleeve.

Make sure there’s extra room in your bag though; you’ll likely receive more than a few freebies, brochures and business cards throughout the day.

We hope these tech conference preparation tips help you get ready for what proves to be a fun and inspiring event. And, if your business is ever in need of event space for a conference, don’t hesitate to contact us here at The Brewery.

Our versatile, hi-tech and beautiful event spaces are a perfect setting for tech conferences, product launches, business meetings and more, right in the heart of London. Contact us to find out more.

 

How to get the most out of a tech conference

The Gitlab Commit tech conference at The Brewery

Making the decision to attend a tech conference is a great one. A tech conference can deliver a host of benefits to attendees’ careers and personal development.

From the chance to learn from industry experts and peers, to developing networking skills and widening social circles, attending a technology conference offers a wealth of opportunity to professionals.

If you’ve signed up for a tech conference in 2021, we’ve compiled our top tips to help you get the absolute most out of this rewarding experience.

Review the conference schedule

There is nothing worse than turning up to a conference unprepared and unaware of the speakers and activities on the agenda.

If the conference is taking place in one room all day, with all speakers and activities taking place in the same space, it is less important to review the conference schedule ahead of time. You just need to be aware of when and where you need to be for registration and the conference start time.

However, if the conference is taking place across multiple rooms with various speakers, workshops and activities throughout the event, it is important to take some time to review the schedule in advance. Familiarise yourself with the talks and decide which ones you would like to attend within each time slot in the schedule. This can be tricky, as you may see more than one speaker you wish to listen to within the same slot, so be prepared and research the schedule in advance.

Research speakers and topics

When it comes to tech conferences in the UK, it is hugely important that attendees thoroughly research the array of speakers attending throughout the day and familiarise themselves with their topics.

Research the list of speakers and their chosen subject areas and prioritise which talks you could not bear to miss. There may be a specific must-see talk that will help you or your team’s development, or a subject matter very close to your heart. By researching in advance, it ensures you don’t overlook a rare opportunity to see a specific expert in the flesh or come away from the event disappointed because you have missed a must-see segment.

Sugar Rooms event

Follow up

Take the time to follow up with the conference organisers once the event has ended. Most conferences record each of the talks that take place throughout the day and make these available online. It is worth a follow up, so you can recap on what you watched, and digest all the other talks you were unable to attend.

Why not follow up with conference organisers, retrieve the recording and hold your own feedback sessions with your colleagues and showcase all you’ve learned?

Familiarise yourself with the layout

While it is important to research the schedule and speakers at your next tech conference, it is also crucial to familiarise yourself with the layout of the event venue itself.

The Brewery, with our variety of characterful rooms, is ideal for tech conferences of 1,000 attendees or for more intimate events. Each of our rooms – The Porter Tun, King George III, Queen Charlotte, Sugar Rooms, Smeaton Vaults and James Watt can be tailored to your own unique needs and the range of spaces linked together or used separately for breakout or networking areas.

Ensure you become aware of registration locations, event spaces, breakout rooms, toilets and where you can pick up refreshments. This will avoid you running the risk of getting lost on the day or missing out on important talks through being in unfamiliar surroundings.

Venue layout

Tweeting during the event

Ensuring you are an active listener throughout the event will ensure you are getting the absolute most out of it.

A great way to keep engaged and digest the event is to live tweet throughout the conference. Not only will this keep you on schedule and focussed, but it’s a great way to tag in the event hashtag and speakers, and for your colleagues and followers to share information in real time as the event unfolds.

Network and have fun

One important thing to remember about tech conferences is it is an opportunity to work hard but also have fun.

Don’t forget to use the conference as a chance to network, expand your social circle, make new friends and involve yourself in conversations with like-minded professionals.

If you are thinking of running your own tech conference and need some advice, read our blog: Tips for hosting a tech conference. We also have some great tips for speaking at a tech conference.

Contact The Brewery today

If you are looking for the perfect venue for your next London tech conference, contact The Brewery today.

Our team of experts will work with you to create an event that is perfect for your brand and audience. With six event spaces, a delicious selection of food and delicious drinks, we will help you create a tech conference that is sure to cause a stir in your industry.

10 tips on speaking at your next tech conference

Drapers digital conference

Speaking at a tech conference can be challenging for even the most seasoned presenter. After all, it’s not just the words you need to consider, but the logistics too. If you’ve got a conference coming up, think about the software you’re using to present, whether you need to send across anything before hand, and what you need to bring with you on the day.

With coronavirus disrupting live conferences for the foreseeable future, it also pays to be prepared for any virtual migration your event might make, and how to prepare for a smooth delivery over the internet.

1. Calm your nerves

The first step in preparing for any conference is knowing how to calm your nerves. Motivational speaker and success coach Paul Scadding says: “There’s no doubt public speaking can be very nerve-racking, but you can ease your nerves by taking control of your breathing.

“You only breathe slowly when you are calm, relaxed and safe, so you can encourage your body to feel this way by being conscious of your breathing and taking slow deep breaths. When I go out to speak to crowds of people I remind myself of my purpose, that I am there to inspire and uplift people, and that feeling soon replaces the fears.”

2. Reframe your thoughts

Nerves are inevitable; we’re only human, after all. But we do have the power to transform nervous energy into something we can use to our advantage.

Lee Chambers, Environmental Psychologist, Wellbeing Consultant and Founder of Essentialise Workplace Wellbeing, says: “When you’re feeling nervous, tell yourself “I’m excited” – it is much easier to transition from nervous to excited, as they are both high arousal states, just one is negative and one is positive.

“By telling yourself you’re excited, you will keep the performance state, but your butterflies won’t feel like moths, and you will actually move psychological state. Telling yourself to calm down is counterproductive and very hard to do because it is a low arousal state, the polar opposite of nervousness.”

3. Prepare correctly, and prepare well

There’s a famous saying – “fail to prepare, prepare to fail”, which couldn’t be more fitting for public speakers. Preparation is key, from planning and logistics to on-the-day delivery.

Presentation Skills Trainer Simon Raybould of Presentation Genius says, “When creating your presentation, RESIST the instinct to fire up the tech first! Design your presentation old-school analogue and sort out your content before you even THINK of turning on your tech to pull together your slides. Also, as daft as it sounds, don’t trust the tech. Ask the obvious questions such as which version of PowerPoint they’re using and how you’ll be miked up.”

Rob Weatherhead, a Freelance Digital Consultant, continues and elaborates on this point: “Is it an auditorium, a classroom set up, a large hall with a stage? And what is the tech set up?  Will you have a lectern? A clicker?  Do they want a pdf, powerpoint?

“Understanding all of these points will make the day go more smoothly and allow you to focus on your delivery. Having tech issues can lead to you launching into your talk unprepared and flustered.”

Porter Tun conference

4. Get familiar with your event

While it’s easy to focus on your part of the conference, there are many benefits in familiarising yourself with the event as a whole. Rob Weatherhead says: “Communicate with the organisers. A lot of the time speakers have an initial conversation with the organisers about topics, and then nothing until D-Day. As a speaker I would always recommend staying in touch with them as it will help you understand more about the event, who might be at your talk and what other content is going to be presented.

“Ask them how ticket sales are going, who else is lined up to speak, what types of job titles the attendees have.  All of this will help make the day itself less of a shock but also help you tailor your content to the best possible fit.”

5. Don’t assume universal knowledge

In most scenarios, attendees will be at your conference to learn something new and insightful from an industry expert, so it’s important to meet them where they are rather than where they want to be.

Simon Raybould elaborates: “Remember that tech is broad and your knowledge is deep. Just because it’s a tech conference you can’t assume everyone has the same tech background as you – or even any tech background at all! Fight the “curse of the expert” – where you know so much about something you lose the ability to tell the audience what’s important. Generally speaking, they don’t care how it works as much as they care that it works… and what’s in it for them.”

Rob Weatherhead also explains, “If there is a single, or small number of key tips you want people to take away from your talk, then do two things – make it clear up front, and repeat them through the talk. Don’t leave your audience reading between the lines for points, and repeat them so they hit home.”

conference sugar rooms

6. Practice makes perfect

Running through your speech ahead of the day allows you to build confidence and iron out the finer details of your presentation. The last thing you want is to forget key points, or rush over something that requires particular attention.

Judith Quin, Vocal Confidence and Communication Specialist at Your Whole Voice, emphasises the importance of practice. “Practice your talk out loud – properly out loud at full volume – and a bit slower than feels natural.  This helps on two levels. Firstly, it gets the speech in to your muscle memory, so your mouth will know what’s coming next, even if you don’t and secondly, when the nerves/adrenaline kick in you will speak quicker – but it won’t be as fast as if you practiced at normal pace.”

7. Think about your delivery

Now that you’ve prepared your speech, familiarised yourself with the technology, and learnt more of the wider context of the event, it’s time to consider your delivery. Lee Chambers says, “It’s all about connection, not perfection. You might have a room full of people, eyes looking at you. But you are only actually speaking to one person at a time, connecting with them by sharing your story, insight, or information. You don’t have to pretend to be a perfect public speaker, as this doesn’t connect with anyone as it appears unauthentic.

“Aim to express, not impress: You are speaking and have value to share. Express this from within you, rather than trying to impress people, and when you make the slip up that almost always occurs in these situations, you can just laugh and carry on. Most people aren’t thinking about you, they are listening to what you say and thinking of how that translates to their world.”

8. Speak about your beliefs

If you’re on a panel, you shouldn’t feel intimidated by the other people speaking – you’re there for a reason, and your opinion is valued. Simon Lockwood, Creative Marketing Director at The Brewery, says, “I think it is important to try and be original and true to your beliefs, especially when on a panel. You don’t have to go along with the consensus; if you have something to say that offers a different angle, then as long as you can back it up and aren’t being deliberately contradictory, you should go your own way and stand by your own thoughts and opinions. This will give you much more credibility and be far more interesting for the audience, who will want to hear other theories and thoughts.

9. It’s okay to mess up.

In spite of all of these tips, it’s important to know that mistakes are okay. Founder of The Happy Me Project and self-development coach and speaker Holly Matthews says: “Remember the audience is on your side, they’re there to learn, to laugh, to be educated by what you have to say. It’s OK to mess it up. Don’t put so much pressure on yourself to be perfect. Your audience aren’t perfect and they don’t expect you to be. If you do get ‘stuck’, take a breath, smile and start again.”

10. Be your true self

Overall, just be yourself. Paul Scadding concludes: “If you want to engage the audience, the best tip I can give is to be yourself, be authentic and share what you know. It’s good to remain professional, but people can see right through vague, cheesy sales pitches, so make sure you focus on genuinely adding value. Speak from the heart and share your expertise. The information that you have and what you know could be life changing for someone else. The things that you have mastered could spare others time, money, mishaps and a painful learning curve.”

Lee Chambers supports this sentiment, saying, “Be you, amplified: Speaking is the perfect time for you to get on a stage and just be yourself. Don’t try and learn hand movements and rigid routines, as you will just look like a robot in the headlights. Take a breath, step out there and speak clearly, from your heart and stand proud of the opportunity to share something with the world.”

Technology conferences and events previously hosted at The Brewery:

PHP UK Conference

Udemy

GitLab Commit London

Pocket Gamer Connects

Booking.com Technology Playmaker Awards

Drapers Digital Festival

Rakuten Dealmaker

Salesforce London’s Calling

Tealium Digital Velocity

The Edtech Summit

Get in touch

The Brewery is a premium London event venue that’s ideal for hosting conferences that take the “bored” out of boardroom. Find out more about our conference spaces, or get in touch to find out how we can help you deliver your best event yet.

We’re Good To Go!

We’re continuing to work hard to prepare The Brewery and The Grubstreet Author for reopening and make them safe and COVID secure. Following on from our recent AIM Secure accreditation we have now been awarded the Visit Britain ‘We’re Good To Go’ industry standard.

The ‘We’re Good To Go’ industry standard and supporting mark means businesses can demonstrate that they are adhering to the respective Government and public health guidance, have carried out a COVID-19 risk assessment and checked that they have the required processes in place.

These standards provide reassurance for all our future guests that clear processes are in place to keep them safe and that we are ready to get back to business.

Good To Go logo

The Brewery Takes Gold at The Visit England Awards

Times have been tough in the world of events, but The Brewery now has a reason to celebrate!

On Monday 17th August, as part of a virtual ceremony, The Brewery was awarded gold at the Visit England Excellence Awards in The Business Events Venue of The Year category. The Brewery was nominated to represent London at the ceremony following their win, in the same category, earlier in the year at The London Tourism Awards.

The VisitEngland Awards for Excellence, now in its thirty-first year, celebrate and champion innovation, quality and best practice across the industry recognising businesses and individuals who raise the bar of England’s tourism offer.

The Brewery’s award recognises business events venues that demonstrate an excellent understanding of the market, exceed the expectations of their clients and have a strategic plan for future development within this area, with clear goals.

The whole Brewery team is absolutely delighted and this award is testament to all the hard work that goes into delivering exceptional events on a daily basis, something they can’t wait to get back to doing.

15 Great Corporate Fundraising Ideas

Corporate funding involves gathering financial support from commercial companies and is a great way for charities to secure funds for their causes.

In fact, for many charities, this is one of the best ways to fund their work. A solid corporate partnership can be beneficial for the companies too, helping them to build credibility, improve corporate social responsibility (CSR) and show they’re committed to making a difference in their communities.

Corporate vs charity fundraising ideas

One of the main differences between corporate fundraising and charity fundraising is that corporate funding is raised by a business and then donated to a charity, whereas charity fundraising directly funds the charitable organisation that is raising the money.

If you’re planning a corporate fundraising event to raise money for a great cause, here are our top 15 corporate funding ideas:

1. Bingo

Everyone loves a game of bingo, right? Initiating a bingo tournament is a great way to get the ball rolling and raise those all-important funds.

Simply set the date, plan the event and ask for a donation to be made for each bingo card. You’ll also need to line up a charismatic caller and prizes – make them small but exciting and you’ll be onto a winner.

Bingo numbers

2. Sports day

Competitive sporting events are always a hit in any office environment. They’re great for boosting morale and igniting that all important competitive spirit amongst your workforce.

From football and tennis tournaments, through to tug of war and rounders, there are lots of games that your staff will love getting involved in. How can you raise funds? Just ask those that want to be involved to pledge a donation. You can also raise money on the day of the event by selling refreshments, holding stalls, etc.

Employees at the start line on sports day

3. Silent auction

There’s nothing like a live auction to get the heart racing. Silent auctions are a great way to auction off wholesale and interesting items to bring in the bids.

If you’re planning an auction, you should make sure its lively, exciting and most importantly, features items that people will actually want to buy. This way, you’ll raise optimum funds. Try asking your business network for donations of products, services, or even their time to be auctioned off on the night.

Hands up for silent auction bidding

4. Karaoke night

Not many people can resist a good karaoke night. A guilty pleasure for many, there’s just something about shrugging off your inhibitions, getting behind the mic and belting out your favourite song.

And for a fee, a fun karaoke competition within your company is a sure-fire way to raise funds. Karaoke nights are also super easy to arrange, and you can generate additional funds through food and drink.

Microphone for karaoke

5. Bowling tournament

Bowling is an activity that almost everyone can get involved in and is a great way to initiate some healthy competition in the workplace.

Ask people to donate before they sign up to play and offer a prize for the winner. You could even make it a regular event with a bowling league, with players paying to join.

10 pin bowling lane ready

6. Company concert

Almost every company has a musical genius working under their roof or a secretly talented singer in their midst. With this in mind, why not round up the musicians in your company and host your very own concert?

Ask employees and their families to make a donation to come and watch on the night.

Company concert

7. Raffle

Raffles can be incredibly popular, especially if there’s some exciting prizes and it’s for a good cause. And prizes needn’t cost the earth either, as the hope of winning a bottle of wine, chocolate or even a gift voucher is enough to get many people reaching into their pockets.

Lottery balls for raffle

8. Casino night

Bring the bright lights of Vegas to your workplace by hosting a Vegas night where your guests can play blackjack, craps, roulette and poker, providing they make a donation.

Cards being thrown on casino table

9. Bake sale

Bake sales have long been a success when it comes to raising money for charity. Simply fill your corporate bake sale with lots of delicious sweet treats and scrumptious savoury delights and you’re sure to make a killing for your chosen charity.

Colourful cake sale cake

10. Photo competition

A great way to boost morale and raise money at the same time, a hilarious photo competition is always a laugh.

Simply ask your employees to bring a funny photo in with a caption attached. Hang them in your staff room or other communal area and ask your workforce to vote for their favourite whilst leaving a donation.

Close up of camera lens

11. Arm wrestling competition

Arm wrestling competitions are always great fun and you’re sure to generate lots of interest when it comes to putting people’s egos to the test!

There’s always a great atmosphere surrounding this type of competition as teams sweat it out to triumph. Again, a simple donation from each competitor will soon bring in the funds.

Mother and son arm wrestling

12. Car wash

Many people never get around to washing their car, so why not launch a charity car wash day in your work car park? There should be plenty of volunteers who are willing to give up their day to raise funds for a good cause.

Car being cleaned for charity fundraising

13. Coffee morning

Everyone loves a good natter and to escape their desk for an hour or two. Coffee mornings always go down a treat, especially when hot drinks and delicious cakes, pastries and sandwiches are involved.

Coffee mug on table

14. Darts match

Darts is another game that people love to get involved with. Often a game enjoyed down the local pub, it’s super easy to facilitate a game of darts in the workplace by asking for a simple donation to be involved in the game.

Dart being thown mid-flight

15. Corporate dinner

Everyone likes to escape the office, let their hair down and enjoy an evening of entertainment with their colleagues.

And hosting a corporate dinner is a great way to bring in funds, even by just asking for those attending to pay the ticket price. There are also lots of ways you can generate extra funds at a corporate dinner by initiating auctions and raffles, for example.

Korean lamb

Why choose The Brewery for your corporate funding event?

 Located in the heart of London, The Brewery is a great place to host your corporate fundraising event.

Bringing together a specialist team of talented experts who cover venue management, event production and design, fine dining and customer service, The Brewery really is the ultimate location to host a memorable charity event that’s sure to be a hit.

Each room includes everything you need to create the corporate funding event you envisage – from LED lighting, PA systems and Wi-Fi.

As a premier event and fine dining venue in the City of London, we pride ourselves on delivering the very best service when it comes to planning a charity or corporate funding event.

Get in contact with us today to enquire about your charity event or to make a booking.

What weddings could look like after lockdown

Wedding at The Brewery

For couples who were looking forward to saying ‘I do’ in 2020, wedding planning has become nothing short of turbulent due to the unforeseen impact of coronavirus (COVID-19).

If you’ve received a ‘save the date’ for a rearranged wedding now due to take place in 2021, you are not alone. With thousands of bride and grooms close to taking their nuptials, plans for thousands of weddings have been thrown into disarray.

So, with the effects of COVID-19 still well and truly being felt across the nation, The Brewery’s wedding experts look at the wedding trend predictions for 2021 and beyond.

Compact gatherings

2021 is set to pay witness to intimate wedding celebrations of 20 people or less. While a stripped back guest list could be a result of this year’s limit to social gatherings, it could entice couples to opt for small intimate weddings made up of just their nearest and dearest.

Couples are set to downsize their guest lists to be able to spend more quality time with each person, as well as spending more of their wedding budget on creating unforgettable experiences for their guests.

Wedding at The Brewery

Gratitude in action

If the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us anything, it is that we should ensure we are cherishing those we hold dear and being grateful for our friends and family more than ever.

This message is predicted to carry through into the vision of couples getting hitched in 2021. We could see couples keen to show their affection and love to guests through small and meaningful acts of kindness throughout the day.

From inviting guests to take the wedding flowers home at the end of the day to personalised messages on place settings and affectionate wedding favours, 2021 is set to witness a flurry of wedding-based gratitude in action.

Wedding in Brewery courtyard

Weekday weddings

Next year’s wedding planning is likely to see couples opt for weekday weddings. With many 2020 weekend weddings postponed until next year, a big trend for 2021 will be a rise in weekday celebrations.

Opting for a weekday wedding is certainly better for the wallet, with many wedding price rates during the week being cheaper than at weekends. It also increases the likelihood of couples’ must-have wedding suppliers being available on the desired weekday wedding date.

Sustainably sourced celebrations

While this isn’t a new trend for 2021, it is one that’ we see continuing. The attitude towards a sustainable approach is one that is only growing, and couples are set to embrace even more ways to ensure their wedding is eco-friendly.

From avoiding plastic, gifting plants and ensuring food is locally sourced, there are a host of ways that couples will keep sustainability front of mind throughout 2021 wedding celebrations.

Wedding at The Brewery

Find out more

If you are planning a post lockdown wedding and are looking for the perfect wedding venue, contact The Brewery today.

We’re even offering virtual tours during lockdown so you can have a look around our venue from the comfort of your sofa.

Keeping You Safe – The Brewery is accredited with AIM Secure

We’re still waiting for the all clear to get back to hosting events, but we are working tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure the venue is safe and secure for all of guests, staff and suppliers. We have recently published our venue health and safety guide and we have now also been accredited with the Meetings Industry Association – AIM Secure standard.

AIM Secure recognises our desire to demonstrate a professional approach to the meetings and events business. It highlights our dedication to offering an environment that is healthy and hygienic as well as our commitment to do the very best for everyone who visits the venue.

We can’t wait to see you all again in the, hopefully, not too distant future.