Great Dates for Weddings 2024

What are the best dates for scheduling your 2024 wedding in Australia? Well here’s a list! You might want to choose one of these dates, or you might want to avoid them, but this is a great place to start selecting your wedding date in 2024!

Special Days

There are some interesting dates that fall on a weekend in 2024, although there’s more Sundays in this list than usual!

  • Lunar New Year falls on Saturday 10 February
  • Perennial favourite Valentines Day will be on a Wednesday, so there won’t be much competition for that day!
  • Saint Patrick’s Day falls on a Sunday in 2024
  • Trans Day of Visibility would be a great day for trans folk to celebrate their love (Sunday 31 March)
  • Lamington Day happens to fall on Sunday 21 June, and that would make for a very interesting wedding cake!
  • Wattle Day is the perfect day for true patriots, and it falls on Saturday 1 September
  • If you want to pick a Friday the 13th, your options are September and December
  • Intersex Awareness Day is on Saturday 26 October, making for a perfect celebration for intersex folk

Dates with nice numbers

  • Sunday 4 February has the palindromic 4/2/24
  • Saturday 24 February has a neat little 24/2/24
  • 24 August is nicely patterned with 24/8/24

Beyond these, I can also suggest the day of the magnificent Gippsland Pride Gala would make for a very hectic but memorable wedding!

The King’s Birthday long weekend is also worth considering, because very few Australians have any significant commitments.

Help! I’m the Maid of Honour!

Being chosen as the maid of honour for a friend’s wedding is one of those great roles people long for. But what, exactly is expected? And with the changing nature of weddings, do you have to deliver a maid of honour’s speech? Here’s a quick guide to get you started.

The role

First and foremost, a maid of honour should remember that she is there to support the person who invited her to take on the role. If that person says no hen’s night, there will be no hen’s night. If that person is stuggling to zip up her dress, you should be ready to help. If that person wants to wear a hot pink pantsuit, you may have to wear one too, help them find the hot pink pantsuit, or stage an intervention. Or possibly all three!

However it plays out, if you’re focused on helping, you’ll do well.

Task list

Now, the term maid of honour is slightly in decline, and even the customs around what she does are not set in stone. There is certainly no reason why this role cannot be undertaken by a man, and even a female maid of honour could be there to support a groom!

Whatever the context, the list below is a random collection of things maids of honour over the years have taken on. In twenty-first century weddings, no task should simply be assumed: always speak with the couple about what they expect, and follow their lead.

In order of the most common roles that fall to a maid of honour to the least, here it is:

  • Get the bride ready for the ceremony
  • Help the bride select her outfit, and those of the bridesmaids
  • Witness the bride’s signature on the marriage certificates
  • Help with wedding planning and act as a point of contact for suppliers on the day
  • Help with DIY projects
  • Join the first dance with the Best Man
  • Organise a hen’s party
  • Help with outfit planning for the groom and his attendants
  • Collect cards and gifts from guests

Maid of Honour’s speech

It has not been a long-standing tradition for maids of honour to deliver a speech, but it is certainly becoming more common. The role could be done in conjunction with a best man, or a maid of honour could deliver it independently.

So if you dont know where to start, the most important thing to do is start early!

A simple approach is to follow this pattern:

  1. Talk about the person who asked you to be their maid of honour, and why they matter to you
  2. Talk about the person they’re marrying and why you support the marriage
  3. Wish them well.

If that sounds too simple, get started and you’ll quickly realise only the third point is easy! But also remember that if public speaking is a challenge for you, one paragraph on each of those points is enough. If your maid of honour’s speech is two minutes of heartfelt congratulations, it will be perfect.

If you are more comfortable with public speaking, I would encourage you to have a look at my post about humour in wedding speeches. It is focused on queer weddings but very relevant for straight weddings too.

Most importantly

Have fun. If youre not having fun, the bride is probably not having fun either, and as their primary support person, its your role to change that. And keep in mind that this may mean supporting their partner as well!

There is no right or wrong way to be the maid of honour, there’s just your way. Be yourself and stay focused on making bride’s day special.

Aisle Just Leave This Here

Queens know how to march! But ask us about walking down the aisle, and we’re not so confident. When it comes to how two brides walk down the aisle, there are a few things to consider.

Continue reading “Aisle Just Leave This Here”

Gay Marriage Name Changes

LGBTIQA+ couples getting married have a slew of traditions to wade through to decide what works for them. But gay marriage name changes are possibly one of the most significant of them.

The question of whether—and how—to decide about a name change is still tough for same sex couples getting married. So in this post I am just going to lay out the options, and then make some suggestions for making that decision.

The options

You always retain the right to use the name on your birth certificate. If you have previously legally changed your name, that name always remains your right as well. When you get married, you also gain the right to use the family name of the person you marry. You can replace the family name on your birth certificate or change of name certificate with it, or you can use it in addition to your previous name.

If you decide to use both names, you can use them in any order you choose. For example, if Micah Mallett marries Juniper Jones, Micah’s married name options are:

  • Micah Mallett
  • Micah Jones
  • Micah Mallett-Jones, and
  • Micah Jones-Mallett

And Juniper’s options are:

  • Juniper Jones
  • Juniper Mallett
  • Juniper Jones-Mallett, and
  • Juniper Mallett-Jones

And your partner’s choice has no effect on yours.

An additional option I have assisted couples with is taking on a new name. This option is available to anyone; however, it cannot be done in unison with your marriage. One or both parties to the marriage would need to change their name directly with the registry office before the wedding. The new name can be declared as part of the wedding ceremony.

My suggestions

Many gay couples getting married are simply not changing their name, and there is nothing wrong with that. Personally, having taken my husband’s name, I love referring to my “maiden name” and watching people take a moment to process that (it’s one of the few examples of gendered language in English that works in women’s favour).

Some options to consider include:

Double barrell

I love double-barrell names, as you might be able to tell from my own name! I love the fact that the change reflects a change in your status. Nonetheless, there are distinct inconveniences in them:

  • they make long signatures
  • they’re hard to spell for people who dont know you
  • children may have a challenge to live with them.

You may also worry about trying to decide which name goes first if you double-barrel them. Fear not! You can actually have inverted double-barrel surname. This is what my husband and I did: our surnames are in the opposite order from each other (I’m Skillicorn-Chilver; and he’s Chilver-Skillicorn).

Flip a coin

One option I would love a couple to take is a flip of the coin as part of the ceremony! This would be a great option if you are both fine with either surname (it would also be great for a hetero couple!).

Combine your names

Some couples choose to take an informal approach and combine their names. A Prakash marrying a Crawford might choose to adopt the name Crawkash or something along those lines. This name is not the legal name of either party before the marriage, so it would take more than the marriage paperwork to make it legal. Still, it may be a fine option for some couples.


Whatever you decide, it is wise to consider the impact a name change will have on:

  • your professional profile
  • children, if you hope to have them
  • your signature, and
  • conducting ordinary business.

Whatever you decide, own it! Marriage equality was hard enough to achieve not to make the most of it!

If you need help with the process of changing your name after marriage, check out my post Changing Your Name After Marriage in Victoria.

Great Dates for Weddings 2023

What are the best wedding dates for 2023, Australia? I have a few suggestions…

Special days

Quite a few special days happen to fall on a Saturday in 2023

  • New Year’s Day is a Sunday in 2023
  • Friday the 13th happens in January and October if you want to tempt fate!
  • Lunar New Year falls on Sunday 22 January
  • Valentine’s Day is a Tuesday, so not too many people are going to be competing for it
  • April Fool’s Day, on the other hand, could be quite popular as it falls on a Saturday
  • Bisexual fiancés can really Celebrate Bisexuality Day which happens to fall on Saturday 23 October!
  • Halloween is also a Saturday, making All Soul’s Day a Sunday, and both are great wedding dates
  • And to round it off, New Year’s Eve also boasts a fine Sunday locale!

Dates with nice numbers

  • Thursday 2 March has the tidy 2.3.23
  • Sunday 12 March offers 12.3.23
  • Friday 31 March joins them with 31.3.23
  • Two Saturdays fall on the 23rd of the month: 23 September 23 and 23 December 23
  • Sunday 23 April 23 also has a nice ring to it
  • Friday 1 December has a sequential 1.12.23

Novelty dates with little competition

Avoiding Saturdays for your wedding ceremony can make booking easier and save you some cash. 2023 has fewer novelty dates than most years, but they’re not altogether absent:

  • Thursday 2 March is 2.3.23
  • Friday 3 March is similarly charming with 3.3.23
  • Friday 31 March also avoids the competition with 31.3.23
  • Friday 1 December has a sequential 1.12.23

As always, same sex couples can consider all of Pride Month a novelty date with little competition, because June is one of the months when the fewest weddings are held.

Image showing great wedding dates 2023

For more help picking your date, head over to my post
How to Pick Your Wedding Date

Pronouncements in Same Sex Weddings

The pronouncement is one of those iconic moments of a ceremony that even Hollywood leaves in their highly-truncated weddings, but we’re still adapting the tradition of pronouncements in same sex weddings.

Continue reading “Pronouncements in Same Sex Weddings”

Wedding Music Tip #4


Finding wedding playlists to suit your ceremony is a challenge. And although the technology that rides around in our pocket has dramatically opened up the options, there is now even more to wade through!

Have you ever had that feeling that there must be the perfect playlist out there somewhere? The one that would just be spot-on for your wedding? Well I have one sweet little trick to share that might just make it easier for you to find that list:

Use keywords from your vows to search your favourite streaming service.

That’s it! It’s one of those simple ideas that just isnt obvious, but can make a world of difference.

For instance, if your vows included the phrase, “I love everything about you”, you could type exactly that into the search bar of your music app, and look through the results for songs and playlists. It’s simple, and it can shake up your search strings in just the right way.

Now, if you haven’t gotten up to writing your vows yet, you’ll need to get right on that. And if you’re not writing personal vows, this doesn’t help at all! The important thing to recognise is that when you write your vows, you have to focus on what matters most to you, and to your fiancé. And that focus is valuable, so use it 🙂

If you need a little help selecting a streaming service, try this list.

And if you need help writing your vows, check out my video on how to write vows!

What Do We Have To Say?

If you want a short ceremony or you’re going to write your ceremony yourself, here is what you have to include.

Continue reading “What Do We Have To Say?”

Given Away?

When it comes to gay wedding ideas, giving away the bride is not the most obvious consideration, but it can be relevant for same sex couples.

Continue reading “Given Away?”

BDM Fee Increase

On an entirely different note for this blog, a price hike has led me to review my pricing structure for weddings. Victoria’s Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages (BDM) recently increased the cost of birth, death and marriage certificates by almost 50%. In my opinion, this increase is not just extreme in value, but also very poorly justified. It comes at a terrible time for engaged Victorians dealing with extreme cost of living increases following two years of uncertainty, cancellations and postponements.

My pricing structure change

Since moving to Victoria, I have mostly incorporated the cost of certificates into my fees. However, this is something I cannot control or have any influence over. I have therefore decided that the best course of action is to separate the cost of marriage certificates.

For a small proportion of couples, the official certificate from BDM is not necessary. If neither party is changing their name, there is no particular need to hold legal proof of your marriage. Fluffy Form Fifteen, which you get anyway, is sufficient in this case (there is a description of the difference in this post).

For those couples who do need the official certificate, the most efficient way to obtain it will still be to have your celebrant order it at the time of registration. For my clients, I will simply add the current BDM cost to invoices, and change that charge every time the Registrar increases it.

I have updated my Pricing page to reflect this change.

The Change

Until February 2022, getting your marriage certificate in Victoria cost $36.3 plus postage.

Today, getting your marriage certificate in Victoria costs $51.4 plus postage.

Presumably, the next increase will take that cost to $75.61 (though they may generously round that to the nearest decime as they’ve done in the past). And that could happen any time! It only takes the time required for the Registrar to seek feedback and then have some Vogon write a list of reasons why the feedback is invalid.

Faux Consultation

The Registrar asked Celebrants directly to comment on the proposed change in the name of ‘consultation’. Despite what appears to be almost-universal objection, the Registrar has spent a wad of taxpayer money trying to justify the change by negating all the feedback received.

Provide your feedback

If you would like to read more about the change, follow this link.

If you want to make your voice heard about this change, email or contact the minister responsible, Attorney-General Jaclyn Symes. Good luck.

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