Katie Skellon is a contemporary wedding planner, specialising in creating unique celebrations set against the beautiful backdrop of North Wales.
Katie details her company ethos, her innovative take on weddings, and the art of picking the perfect colour with the help of an old wedding day tradition: something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue...
The old times certainly didn't involve weddings—they involved children and lots of them. Two years ago, I was Assistant Head at a huge school in Manchester.
Looking back, my journey into event planning is not so surprising. All of my friends used to look forward to my birthday because they knew it meant having a "Katie Party”. This reputation reached a whole new level after we threw our own wedding—a full-on fiesta in a field! At 9pm the night before the wedding, I was still in the field arranging furniture and setting up lighting arrangements but I knew I wouldn't have it any other way.
Picture this: you spend months or even years planning your perfect wedding day. Family and friends travel far and wide to share in your special day, and a wonderful time is had by all. 12 hours later, all it’s over. People return home, venues are stripped and prepped ready for the next bridal party, and you're left feeling deflated. That is where I come in. I specialise in creating weekend-long wedding events in the ever-enchanting North Wales—there is so much more to North Wales than meets the eye and I am on a mission to rebrand it.
The kind of clients I take on want a wedding that screams "us", they are design-focused and they want their wedding to be talked about (in all the good ways)! My clients love blank canvases—marquees, tipis, empty barns, and industrial warehouses that they can put their stamp on. They think of all sorts of ideas to make amazing talking points for guests—cake tables, mini spaces, window areas etc. and they love tables with unusual linens, gorgeous place settings, and unique but beautiful furniture. They choose catering based on their personal tastes, from Thai noodle bars to grazing boards, from street food to lobster on the beach. And they put entertainment high in their list of priorities—from Indie DJs to bongo drums, gospel choirs to silent discos.
The first thing I ask new clients to do is press pause! Often, couples are so happy to be engaged that they storm into planning their wedding—I encourage them to enjoy their engagement first. Throw a party, get your nails done, look at the ring 10,000 times, have an engagement shoot—this isn’t just the start of the countdown, it is a huge milestone. Then, before any wedding chat, I get to know my clients as people. Full planning couples are going to be stuck with me for a big part of the next year so it is important that we are a good match. But I have learnt to realise that it is okay if we're not, you can’t be everyone’s cup of tea! It is far better to recommend another amazing planner more suited to their style at the start of the process than mid-way through.
Skellon Events was born from "a love of being your beautiful self.” I try to embed from day one that your wedding should reflect you. It is important to find a balance between incorporating traditions to please your family and being completely led by them, to the point that you lose sight of what you want as a couple. Throughout the process, I implement regular reflection points to ensure that clients are planning their perfect day.
My philosophy: your wedding, your way. There is no standard blueprint here—every single wedding I have worked on has been different and I pride myself on that.
A good stylist will "borrow" inspiration from everywhere. A day out to the garden centre with the family may lead to a tropical centrepiece, and a rummage through a fabric sale can lead to amazing textured material on the cake stand. Inspiration is everywhere and not only in the wedding world—home styling, fashion design, and art all play a part in designing the best wedding.
I absolutely love the 70s. I am a true disco personality—a funky retro font and a pink/orange combo is absolutely me.
Australian and American weddings always seem to outdo UK weddings on the styling front, but we are moving in the right direction. But fellow UK wedding planners I love include Stories of Events—her tables are just something else, and MAVE Weddings—not only has she mastered boho dreams she is also such a babe!
A wedding day should be an experience for the guests and the colour palette sets the ambience immediately. A good planner will help you step out of your comfort zone and show you different ideas, by even simply adding coloured glassware or changing the linens from standard white.
We are really trying to stop the mentality of "my bridesmaids are dressed in light blue so that must be my wedding colour." We are always looking at interesting combinations, textures, etc.
Referring to the original wedding design plan, chosen long before the venue, helps me make sure that the journey from "save the date" to "on the day" is seamless in design.
A colour scheme should reflect the couple's personality. At my wedding, we were totally colourful. Did it suit everyone? Absolutely not, some of the guests would have preferred muted pastel tones. But did it reflect us? Absolutely.