Looking for a fun and vibrant Melbourne wedding celebrant? Well, say hello to Jess Kerr of Weddings by Jess who is exactly that (and then some).
Here, we chat to her about what makes an epic ceremony and why she’s become such a sought after wedding celebrant in Melbourne and further afield. Take it away Jess…
Tell us a bit about your business…
I’m a young and passionate wedding celebrant based in Melbourne, and beginning to do more and more interstate weddings which for me is very exciting! I love what I do and have just recently become a full-time wedding celebrant, making love-stories my sole profession, and I couldn’t love what I do any more.
What is the main advantage for couples who work with you?
Couples that work with me receive a young, vibrant and experienced celebrant. But most of all – they receive someone who cares. For me, this is so much more than a job and it’s about genuinely connecting with the couples I’m working with. It’s about providing them with an amazing wedding ceremony that has left an impact on them and their guests long after it has finished.
People don’t get married so that they can have a stream of business meetings, but so they can meet with people who are on the same page they are and who can understand and grow their creative ideas about their wedding day to something better than they had even imagined. I love being a part of that journey with couples and giving them ideas and new ways to have a ceremony that they may not have heard of otherwise.
Can you share some of the things that go on behind the scenes?
Behind the scenes is where some of the most brilliant moments of weddings actually happen. One of my favourite things is arriving early to a wedding and being there for when the groom arrives. He’s normally in such a great headspace, which is most often a mixture of excitement and nerves, and I love seeing how each guy handles it differently in the hour or so before his bride greets him at the end of the aisle.
We chat and talk about what’s about to happen, and seeing how gloriously happy and in love he is in those moments is one of the the most brilliant parts of the job.
Do you think there are any preconceptions about the wedding industry?
Yes absolutely. I am writing a book about this very topic at the moment, which will assist brides in de-bunking the misconceptions about what people suppose planning a day looks like, versus what it can be like if you stay true to yourself and create something that reflects your personalities as a couple and who you both truly are.
One of the biggest myths is that the average wedding in Australia costs over $90,000. These figures have been blown out by hugely expensive weddings and created a sense that people need to be putting up a huge amount of money for their special day because it is compared to figures like these. A wedding is special because of the people that take part in it, and there are so many creative and awesome ways a wedding can be put together that take the pressure off and bring the budget down to a manageable amount.
What are some of the main questions couples ask you? And what are the answers?
Great question! There’s a few main ones that couples ask me, the first that comes to mind is how I became a celebrant. It originally started when a co-worker decided they saw me as the type of person she’d like to have perform her wedding ceremony, so she literally turned her desk chair to me at work one day, and asked me if I’d like to be her celebrant!
After having a think about it I said yes, teamed up with an authorised celebrant and we performed the ceremony together. It was one of the most wonderful experiences I have ever had, and from that moment I knew it was exactly what I was supposed to be doing with my life.
Can you describe what sets your business apart…
To me, Weddings by Jess is about understanding that every single couple want their wedding day to have their own signature on it – to be totally unique, just as they are. Although there have been many weddings before, and many will come after, my job is creating a completely genuine set of moments for you that completely capture who you are, and why you are getting married. Creating something truly genuine in a world of copies and similarity, that’s what I’m all about. It can be done, it has been done, it’s what I do.
What’s your next predicted wedding trend?
Bronson Van Wyck, a well known event planner in America was recently quoted in Vogue saying: “Brides and grooms will recognise more that their ceremony is the sacred part of their celebration.” And I have to agree! As a celebrant, I’m so excited that this trend is becoming less of a trend and more of a movement, in which people can see that they can be expressive, artistic and creative with their wedding ceremony, as well as in all of the other parts of their day.
This means that people bring out all of the celebratory and enjoyment vibes right from the get-go, and means that people aren’t waiting until drinks are being poured to get the party started.