Tag: gift list

Patchwork Couple: Josh & Victoria’s South Africa Honeymoon Fund

Victoria and Josh have had a modern-day romance – they met on Tinder, no less! Victoria had just about given up when she finally swiped right for Josh one day in 2014. They’re a low-key couple and planned a wedding to match, then, with a bit of help from Patchwork and their wedding guests, jetted off to South Africa on an incredible adventure. We asked Victoria all about it.

How did you get engaged?

Josh actually proposed to be on my Birthday the year after we met. I kind of ruined it – he had a lovely day planned, and was planning on proposing on a bridge in our favourite park near our house, but I’d been to an interview in York and got back late! He ended up proposing to me on the sofa. It was still the most amazing proposal ever – I don’t think it needs to be fancy, or over the top. It’s a special moment no matter where/when/how.

Agreed! What kind of wedding did you want?

We knew we wanted something low key. We don’t have huge families, and we didn’t want to spend a lot. We also didn’t want the “traditional” wedding. We didn’t spend money on favours or flowers – me and mum actually went to M&S on the morning of the wedding to pick up some white roses, and then my friend Katherine arranged them with Lavender from her garden, and feathers that had been donated to us. They looked stunning! For the decor, we bought Terrariums from Etsy, and filled them with white stones, candles from The White Company and some green vine leaves. It was all very simple, but beautiful. It was a really cosy autumnal vibe.

Sounds amazing. What kind of music did you have?

We added a real personal touch with my sister Lex, brother-in-law Moss and friend Craig (who are all musicians) play on the day. We chose a few really special songs for the day including ‘When The Stars Go Blue’ by Ryan Adams to walk down the aisle to, and then ‘All I Want Is You’ by Barry Louis Polisar (including an epic harmonica performance from my sister) and then ‘Breathless’ by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds as we left. We also didn’t want a typical wedding photographer with staged photos taking up most of the day, so my friend Liam Henry came along for part of the day to take some shots, and they turned out beautiful! Because we didn’t have a wedding photographer, we hired a Photobooth which was a great laugh and relatively inexpensive.

What was your venue like?

After going to see a few venues and deciding they were all too ‘weddingy’ we decided on Hotel Du Vin in Harrogate. We decided to get married at Harrogate Registry Office late afternoon and then have dinner and a party at Hotel Du Vin. We also planned it for Bonfire Night (the night before my birthday) so that we could have free firework displays across the town!

Did you have a first dance?

We didn’t! We didn’t want to be the centre of attention. We wanted to have dinner and a party with our closest friends and family, and not make the whole day be centred around us.  Me and my sister sang after dinner as a  bit of a surprise. I suppose that could be classed as our alternative ‘first dance’.

What was your favourite part of the day?

Honestly, I don’t know! Seeing Josh as I walked down the aisle was probably my favourite.  But the whole day was just amazing – it was so intimate and special, and was just loads of fun. I think the music throughout the day really made it though – so many people commented on how amazing and special it was. Having musicians as friends and family is definitely a bonus! It has to be said that my sister Lex arranged an amazing playlist for the party after dinner – everyone was up dancing until the early hours and it was just such a laugh.

So why did you choose Patchwork for your wedding registry?

Because it enabled us to create something easily for people to gift as little or as much as they wanted. We don’t need things for the house, or anything like that, and giving money felt a bit too ‘transactional’ and impersonal. We knew that using Patchwork would enable our guests to donate towards something that we would hold as special memories, rather than material things.  

What did you ask for contributions towards?

We wanted to fund our honeymoon to South Africa. It was an amazing way of doing it as we got to do some amazing things, like Safari! And stay in a stunning hotel on the beach in Camps Bay.

It was just really special and we are so grateful to everyone who made it happen for us – we were really humbled. It really was a once in a lifetime trip for us. We aren’t fancy people, but we wanted a fancy honeymoon and it was amazing to know our family and friends were part of that experience for us. And they thought it was great! It was so easy and meant that people didn’t have to worry about bringing cash or presents with them on the day.

Using Patchwork was just so easy. And you can make it your own and put your personality into it.

Would you recommend your South Africa trip to other honeymooners?

Absolutely! South Africa is an amazing country. It’s so beautiful – waking up every morning to the sea on one side, and Table Mountain on the other was honestly breathtaking! The people are so friendly, and the fact you can drive 2 hours inland and be on safari with the Big 5 is just awesome. And then the Vineyards! Babylonstoren was the most amazing place I’ve ever stayed. I wish we could go every year!


 

Thank you Victoria & Josh for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Patchwork Couple: Ange & Steph’s Winter Honeymoon Adventure

Ange and Steph met in 2011 at work in Birmingham, and Ange says it was ‘friendship at first sight’. They both needed flatmates so they moved in together with another work pal. They soon found out they had loads in common and shared a bond only Celts living away from home amongst the English can share! A year later, Ange got a promotion and moved to London, and it was then they realised their true feelings. After 9 months of living apart and getting trains up and down, Steph decided to move to London so they could be together. Fast forward five and a half years and the couple are joined at the hip, still working and living together, and they wouldn’t have it any other way. We asked Ange all about their beautiful wedding day and found out how Patchwork helped give them the honeymoon of their dreams.

How did you two get engaged?

Steph organised a wonderful day of treats to celebrate our anniversary, including a spa day, lunch in our fave cafe, a stroll via ‘Love Lane’ (in London) before heading to a rooftop overlooking St Paul’s Cathedral, where Steph popped the question under the stars. It was a very surreal moment and one we will never forget. We took the next hour to ourselves sipping on champagne before we called the family to tell them the good news.

What kind of wedding did you plan?

We were very much inspired by our family and friends.  We are both really close to our family and have a tight knit group of pals. We wanted it to be as much about them as it was us. That’s what inspired a lot of the personal touches and the location itself allowed for that, since the barn we chose pretty much comes as an empty shell with all the potential!

We wanted there to be music at all times and every song was chosen by us, from the pre-ceremony playlist right through to the party tunes. Music evokes memories and says a lot about a person. There were Irish jigs interwoven with Scottish tunes throughout the drinks reception and songs from the early days of us, giving our guests a little insight into our life through music.

Did you have a first dance? What was it?

The idea of a first dance had never really appealed to us. Our wedding weekend was very much about bringing our families together so we decided to share our first dance with the whole wedding party and cheekily selected to dance to ‘The Gay Gordons’ to kick off the ceilidh. I’m not sure anyone got the irony in the song choice, but we did so that’s all that mattered.

What was your favourite part of your wedding day?

It’s really hard to choose just one so we are going to be a bit greedy. We often recall when reminiscing about the day the moment we entered the barn together. We decided to walk each other down the aisle, to symbolise the fact that this marriage was equal and we were in it together. This was met with a thunderous round of applause from our guests which actually made us stop in our tracks. We were overwhelmed by this ‘wall’ of love greeting us and it really set the tone for the rest of the day and night.

We can’t not mention that our Our ‘Pals of Honour’ rewrote the lyrics to Beauty and The Beast ‘Something there that wasn’t there before’ as part of their speech and toast, which was incredibly personal, memorable, hilarious and special.

Why did you choose Patchwork for your wedding registry?

We knew we didn’t want a traditional gift list so went in search of something we could personalise. We had our dream honeymoon in mind, full of experiences and culinary adventures instead of material gifts. Patchwork made that so easy for us to do.  

We wanted a winter honeymoon full of romance, fairy lights, mulled wine and christmas markets, as well as history and culture to fulfil our inner geeks. Since trains featured quite highly in the early days of our relationship and they’re just so old school and romantic, we decided to ‘winter-rail’ across Western Europe. We left on the 5th December from Edinburgh Airport and travelled across Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, France and Belgium on first class trains before returning home to London just in time for the Fireworks of New Year.  

We spent Christmas in Paris and visited fairytale castles in Bavaria, tasted numerous gluhwein the length and breadth of Western Europe, explored ancient Rome and got lost in the cobbled streets of Brugge.

How did you feel when you set off on your travels knowing all of your loved ones had chipped in?

So grateful! We wouldn’t have been able to do everything on our wish list if it hadn’t have been for our friends and family funding our trip. Things we could only dream of doing like travelling 1st class across Europe, our 7 course christmas dinner in the legendary Le Train Bleu in Paris, sipping coffee from the same cups as poets Keats and Shelley at Caffe Greco in Rome, champagne and macarons at Ladurée on the Champs-Élysées, geeking it up on the original Sound of Music tour in Salzburg and a night at the Moulin Rouge. And that’s just scratching the surface.  

Would you recommend your winter adventure to other honeymooners?

Yes we would recommend our honeymoon, especially around Christmas time, just so magical. It was definitely just as much about the journey as it was the destinations and countries we went to. Some of our most treasured memories are whilst getting from one country to another, like the time we almost missed the train because of a very heavy overnight snowfall which meant we had to tobogan our way to the station on our cases. It was a true adventure and a way to discover hidden treasures in big cities and off the beaten track towns and villages.

What was the best bit about using Patchwork for your honeymoon fund?

Well firstly, it was just so much fun to create! It actually helped us to plan our honeymoon and was really great for us to refer to when planning what to fit in and when. Secondly, it looks really cool and is so user friendly, both to set up and to use even after the Patchwork goes live. There was a couple of times when some of our items sold out and we had to go back in and up the quantity. This was super easy to do.

Our patchwork became such a talking point at our hen dos and the wedding and some of our guests have since got in touch asking for the website, so they could use it too. They seemed just as excited about our honeymoon as we were!


 

Thank you Ange & Steph for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

 

The Most Stylish Way to Ask For Cash Towards Your Honeymoon

stylish honeymoon fund

Want to forego the embarrassment of asking for money for your honeymoon fund? Save your guests the awkwardness of making a bank transfer/writing a cheque or bringing cash to the wedding by making a stylish honeymoon patchwork. You get to show everyone all the personal experiences that will make your honeymoon perfect. And guests get to choose what they would like to make a contribution towards. You can go all out for the wealthier family members who may like to chip in for your flights of pay for hotel stays, but you can add some more affordable little treasures in too such as two glasses of ice cold rosé on the Cote d’Azur, a cheeseboard in a Pyrenean mountain restaurant or a camel ride through the Abu Dhabi desert.

stylish honeymoon fund

Couples using Patchwork not only get to fund the honeymoon of their dreams, enjoying all the trips and experiences that their friends and family have funded, they also get to read personal messages that their guests are able to leave alongside their contributions, feel the love that everyone has for them as a couple and enjoy their best wishes for the future together.

Setting up a Patchwork is probably the most fun part of planning your wedding too. So much more fun than dragging your other half around John Lewis picking out your wedding gift list. Browsing readymade honeymoon templates is super fun and also helpful for planning your honeymoon – giving you ideas of destinations as well as activities you can do and things to see.

And contributing to a patchwork is not just easy and fun for guests but allows them to feel part of your union, understand your future plans and help make your dreams a reality.

“We funded a whole list of lovely things we wanted to do on our honeymoon – we thought it would be nicer for someone to know they bought us a boat trip, or dinner at the top of a mountain, rather than a gravy boat or a hand towel. Setting off on our trip knowing everyone had chipped in felt like a big extension of our amazing day. We were thoroughly overwhelmed by the love and generosity of our family and friends and being able to think of them as we went on our adventure was such a nice feeling. Our friends loved how original the idea was.”

 – Patchwork Couple Bea & Robbie

A Patchwork is a super stylish way to set up your online honeymoon registry. We have some readymade patchworks with honeymoon ideas that you may never have even dreamed of. Whether you’d like to soak up the Santorini Sunshine, enjoy a Marrakesh Mini-Moon or cosy up in Cornwall, we have enjoyed putting together lots of dream honeymoons here at Patchwork HQ.

Or perhaps you’d like to make a completely fresh Patchwork and add in your own personal ideas for gifts or experienced you’d like guests to help fund. Create a Pinterest-style board for all the things you need for a new kitchen, upload a photo of a work of art you love or choose images to show how you’d like to landscape the garden! Patchwork is designed to be totally flexible so you can make your gift list or honeymoon fund entirely unique to you.

And the wonderful thing about our honeymoon and wedding registry is that you needn’t pay anything until a guest makes a contribution towards something on your patchwork. There’s no upfront fee to pay with Patchwork. We make our money with a 3% commission on all contributions you receive through the site. Quite simply, if a friend were to give you a £100 contribution, you would receive the full amount directly into your PayPal account, at which point Patchwork and PayPal deduct transfer fees.

Patchwork Couple: Childhood Sweethearts Amelia & Lee’s Wedding Day

Amelia and Lee are proper childhood sweethearts. They’ve been together since they were 14 and 15, when Lee was in a band at school and Amelia was a loyal groupie. She’d wait for him at the bus stop every morning and they’d walk to school together. They even spent their days writing little notes and letters to each other. See – proper childhood sweethearts. They were smitten with each other, and they still are. On the day they married they’d been together for 11 years, 1 month, 1 week and 1 day. We asked Lee lots of nosy questions about their wedding and their Patchworked honeymoon to Mexico and New Orleans…

How did you get engaged?

We got engaged on our 10 year anniversary, in bed. I presented Amelia with a photo album of our ten years together, and once she had finished looking at the book I proposed with my Nan’s engagement ring, which had been passed down to me – adjusted to Amelia’s size secretly by my mum years before.

What kind of wedding did you plan?

Amelia planned what some have described as ‘relaxed’, ‘not traditional’, ‘intimate’ and ‘romantic’ wedding. Our ceremony was in the church next to our school where Amelia’s parents were married. Our reception was at ‘Poplars Hall’ – a beautiful old orphanage in Brentwood, Essex.

We had a buffet style dinner, in which we had our friends cater in the style of a jerk-pan BBQ, some meats and beautiful salads. Myself and my best man served our guests. Amelia had arranged benches for people to sit at with no seating plans which encouraged a free and easy system where guests could move around and mingle easily. Our cake table was made up of home baked cakes from family members, and the two wedding cakes were made by Amelia and her bridesmaid Joanna. Amelia made the decorations herself with the help of friends and family and the flowers were also all arranged ourselves the day before the wedding.

What was your first dance?

Our first dance was ‘Leon bridges – Coming Home’ – this was a last minute decision, as we were actually set on having only having a ‘last dance’ as something Amelia had really wanted, which was ‘St Vincent – Stars Aligned’.

What was your favourite part of the day?

My favourite part of the day – (obviously this is a difficult one) – was our ceremony, when it sunk in that we were actually married! I was crying, laughing, jumping in the air – it was pretty overwhelming.

Amelia’s – Our first dance, it was lots of fun especially as I was so against people watching me badly dance until a few days before, so we made sure we had 30 seconds of planned dancing before everyone ran onto the dance floor to join us!

Why did you decide to use Patchwork for your wedding registry?

We had previously used patchwork a couple of years before for Amelia’s brothers wedding gifts, we found it such a fun and easy way to give people exactly what they want!

What did you decide to ask your wedding guests for?

We wanted to fund our honeymoon – an incredible trip to Mexico and New Orleans. Amelia and I hadn’t been on a holiday together for what seems like such a long time! So we planned a ridiculous adventure which included paradise beaches and street parties.

It was so fun to create the patchwork and actually really helped in planning our honeymoon, finding all the fun things we could experience on our trip! It’s so so easy to use, I loved that you can even adjust it after it goes live, we didn’t realise items would ‘sell out’ so fast so it was ideal that it only took a few moments to up the quantities people could buy. It’s also great that you can look back to see who got what when writing thank you cards!

We had really positive feedback from our guests about how easy and fun it was to use! I have recommended it to so many people since.

How did you feel setting off on your honeymoon?

We felt so lucky and so special that people had been supportive of our gift selection, and extremely excited to go off and actually experience the things we had planned. The Patchwork was a great way for people to visualise our holiday and we mixed up the prices so much so that people could buy us something small and fun like 1 donut, or part of a flight!

Would you recommend your trip to other honeymooners?

Our honeymoon was absolutely incredible! We were so lucky to be able to go to 2 places, we went to Mexico in October which is known as off season however this meant we had the whole of Tulum beach to ourselves! It was incredibly hot so we were so so lucky it felt like a private paradise! New Orleans is the most amazing city we’ve been to, it’s southern hospitality at its finest! It’s so fun and vibrant, we didn’t want to leave, the food and cultures of both places are amazing and we couldn’t recommend them enough.


 

Thank you Lee & Amelia for sharing your patchwork story with us. And congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

All wedding photography by threeflowersphotography.co.uk

Patchwork Couple: Bea & Robbie’s Intimate London Wedding

Bea and Robbie met in January of 2014 when they were both begrudgingly dragged along to a group date with some pals. Bea says there hasn’t been a day since that Robbie hasn’t made her laugh – the perks of marrying a stand up! Thank goodness they went along to that fated date, as last year they tied the knot in a beautifully intimate ceremony in North London. We asked Bea all about it.

How did you get engaged?

We got engaged on my birthday in the November of 2015. Robbie surprised me with a trip to Cornwall where we stayed on a dry docked boat in the middle of nowhere. I was confused when he made me get up so early for my birthday breakfast, but it turned out the ring was burning a hole in his pocket… He proposed over eggs and bubbles!

What kind of wedding did you plan?

From day one all we wanted was good people, good food and a good knees up. We had to save from scratch and didn’t want to hang about, so we had 9 months to get some money together and plan the whole thing. We did the whole thing locally in North London, opting for a non religious ‘ceremony’ hosted by our best pals followed by a big sharing feast and party at our favourite local pub.

What was your first dance?

September by Earth Wind and Fire

Why did you choose Patchwork for your honeymoon fund?

Of the few ‘funding’ sites Patchwork was the easiest to use. It’s transparent about cost and it’s interface is breeze whilst looking really lovely. It was so easy to use. Everything from setting it up, to sharing our link, to transferring the money was so user friendly.

What did you ask for contributions towards?

We funded a whole list of lovely things we wanted to do on our honeymoon – we thought it would be nicer for someone to know they bought us a boat trip, or dinner at the top of a mountain rather than a gravy boat or a hand towel…

Setting off on our trip knowing everyone had chipped in felt like a big extension of our amazing day. We were thoroughly overwhelmed by the love and generosity of our family and friends and being able to think of them as we went on our adventure was such a nice feeling. Our friends loved how original the idea was.

Would you recommend your trip to other honeymooners?

We did a little road trip through Portugal and Spain for our honeymoon. Staying in Europe was amazing because we didn’t waste any time travelling before we could start our fun!


 

Thank you Bea & Robbie for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

The Only Wedding Checklist You’ll Need – We Promise.

Wedding planning can feel a little bit overwhelming at times and that little niggling feeling of forgetting something can start to haunt you. Well don’t worry, we’ve come up with the ultimate wedding checklist, so that you can keep track of every little thing you need to do in the coming months. Sorted.

Newly engaged

+ Drink champagne/beer/apple juice and cheers to each other

+ Tell your loved ones, shout it from the rooftops if you like

+ Enjoy this time together – soak up all those warm fuzzy feels

+ Decide what kind of wedding you both want – what aspects of the day are most important to you? Try and start off on the same page

+ Decide if you want to elope – if so, ignore the rest of this list 

River Medlock Photography – www.rivermedlockphotography.com

11- 12 months before your wedding:

+ Buy a wedding notebook, or just open a brand new Google doc for all of your planning needs

+ Make your wedding Pinterest board (and follow ours here) – it’s the most fun way to collect ideas (but don’t get overwhelmed by all the ‘stuff’)

+ Take a first stab at your guest list

+ Set your wedding budget (be realistic)

+ Pick a date!

+ Research venues, visit your favourites and book the one

+ Find your wedding photographer, set up a meeting and book them

9-10 months before your wedding

+ Choose your wedding party and ask them to do the honours

+ Start shopping for wedding outfits – don’t feel obliged to stick to wedding boutiques, there are plenty of other options around if you’re not keen

+ Decide what to do about food – plan self catering or book a caterer

+ Start making your wedding website if you’re having one (they are handy for your guests to see all information in one place!)

+ Have a think about what kind of cake you’d like (a 3 tier lemon cake or a ‘bake off’ style dessert table? The possibilities are endless..)

+ Design and send your save the dates

+ Research your wedding invitations

+ Decide what to do about music – are you going to hire a band/book a DJ or create your own playlist?

+ Make a honeymoon Pinterest board and follow ours here.

Dale Weeks – www.daleweeksphotography.co.uk

5-7 months before your wedding

+ Ask a friend to be your wedding day MC – it will be super useful on the day to have someone telling everyone what’s happening and when

+ Book your DJ or band if you’ve gone down that route

+ Book your florist

+ Reserve hotel rooms for your wedding guests

+ Decide if you’re going to do your own hair and makeup, or if you’d like a professional to do it – research stylists in your area

+ If your wedding party are wearing suits, decide whether to rent or buy them

+ Have a think about wedding rings and decide on some styles

+ Schedule your hair and makeup trials – it’s a good idea to coincide these with your hen do so that you can give your look a proper trial run

+ Book your wedding night accommodation (unless you’re heading home, in which case buy some extra special bedding so you can have a blissful first lie-in as a married couple)

Babb Photo – www.babbphoto.com

4 months before your wedding

+ Start your honeymoon fund or create your cash gift list with Patchwork

+ Check your passports – you’re going to need them to be up to date if you’re going abroad for your honeymoon

+ Buy your wedding rings

+ Book your wedding transportation if needed

3 months before your wedding

+ Send your wedding invitations, including a link to your Patchwork registry

+ If you need any dress fittings, get them scheduled in

Start any of your DIY jobs, invite friends round to help (ply them with wine)

2 months before your wedding

+ If you’re writing your own wedding vows, start working on them now

+ If you’ve decided to make a speech, start jotting down ideas for that too

+ Do a bit of honeymoon planning – need a new swimming cossie? Get that sorted now

+ Start wearing your wedding shoes around the house to make sure they’re comfy for the big day

Matt Penberthy – www.mattpenberthy.com

6 weeks before your wedding

+ Make final decisions or alterations to your wedding outfits

+ Finalise your vows and speeches

+ Make sure your food is sorted – finalise menus with caterers

1 month before your wedding

+ Put together your seating chart – post-its come in very handy at this point

+ If you’re having any hair or beauty treatments, book those appointments now

+ Making a wedding playlist? Get started on that now! Pick your favourite dancing songs, and maybe some chilled ones to play while your guests are waiting for you to enter the ceremony

+ Finalise any vendor payments

+ Plan the timeline for the day itself, so you know exactly what’s happening and when

+ Tell your wedding party any information they need to know ahead of the day – timings etc

+ Check your dress fits!

+ Confirm any prop/furniture/suit hire

+ Go and get your marriage license

Through the Woods We Ran – throughthewoodsweran.co.uk

2 weeks before your wedding

+ Confirm your final guest list

+ Give your photographer a list of shots you’d like on the day – want to get a picture with grandma? Make sure your photographer knows

+Confirm delivery details with anyone dropping stuff off on the day (flowers, hired furniture, etc.)

+Make sure you have a plan in place for the wedding venue setup and breakdown

1 week before your wedding

+ If you’re having a manicure, get it done now. And don’t do any washing up after.

Give your florist, caterers etc a contact number in case of emergencies – not your own. Maid of honour is usually a good call.

+ Make a little wedding day kit for emergencies – include make up, cotton wool buds, safety pins, a needle and thread, painkillers, plasters, hair grips and mints.

+ Pick up your dress/outfit if you need to

+ Try your whole outfit on (and do a little excited dance)

Tim Kelly & Nadine Ellen www.timandnadine.com

1 day before your wedding

+ If you’re heading off for honeymoon straight after the wedding, make sure you have your transportation organised

+ Print your vows/speech 

+ Take a few deep breaths and try and get an early night

On your wedding day

+ Be in the moment – with a lot going on you can get swept away, but make sure you take it all in

GET MARRIED!

We Heart Pictures – www.weheartpictures.com

After the wedding 

+ Have a Buck’s Fizz for breakfast and toast to your marriage

+ Make sure vendors have been paid in full

+ Follow up with your photographer to check when you’ll get your wedding photos back

+ Ensure everything you hired has been returned

+ Send out thank you notes to people who helped with the wedding

+ Send personalised thank yous via Patchwork with pictures of you enjoying your gifts

Heading to the wedding? Don’t forget these things: 

  • Rings
  • Outfit
  • Vows – if you’ve written them
  • Speech
  • Umbrella – just in case!
  • Marriage license
  • Wedding playlist
  • Underwear
  • Shoes
  • Comfy shoes for evening
  • Emergency kit
  • Wallet
  • Cash
  • Passport

For a printable version of this checklist just click here.

Patchwork Couple: Patrick, Julie & The Mission to Find ‘the Missing Power Loop’

Patrick and Julie are self-proclaimed ‘weirdo/geeks’. So when Patrick decided to propose, he knew he had to do something sufficiently geeky (and romantic!). What followed was an epic sci-fi treasure hunt, a very happy Julie, and a beautiful wedding. Patrick tells us all about their engagement, wedding day and the wonderful honeymoon that their friends and family helped to fund.

How did you get engaged?

This is probably more complicated than it should be. But she is more than worth it. I wanted to marry Julie after about three years of being together. Even though I always told her I never wanted to get married (which she was okay with but secretly wasn’t). So it was a complete surprise when it happened (so sneaky or clever depending).

I wanted to incorporate a bit of ourselves into it so I decided to do a sci-fi treasure hunt. I created illustrations and clues and a guide book to go along with the event which took a year to make and plan. I wanted to tie it in with our four year dating anniversary so Julie wouldn’t suspect it was a proposal, just a really good anniversary present.

I created invites for Julie and two friends to take part in the “mission to find the missing power loop” (wink). On the day I presented her with the book and the first clue which would lead her to the next and so on. Each location were places we had been to on dates and were special to us – seven in total. (I thought it was going to be a logistical nightmare getting all these businesses to help but I was really surprised and grateful that all of them said yes they would.) The book of illustrations along with a “star map” would help her decipher the clues. Julie and her friends made it round London to all the locations with the last clue leading to me waiting at Opium – one of her favourite cocktail bars. She was instructed to bring all her clues with her.

After a drink I presented her with the eighth clue which was a star constellation chart. What she didn’t realise was that all the clue cards had bits of constellations on them, printed on tracing paper.. And that when stacked up in a certain way on top of the chart they spelled out ‘will you marry me?’. I got down on one knee in the middle of the bar and presented her with the ring. She said yes whilst crying. Ahhhhhh!

What kind of wedding did you plan?

We had to be clever for our wedding due to financial constraints, so we planned it for a year and a half to get it down to what we really wanted. We decided on a simple ceremony with sixty family and friends at Clissold house – a beautiful manor house set in a park in North London. For our reception we wanted an industrial/natural theme at the West Reservoir Centre, an art deco former water pump house on a boating lake just down the road.

We’re big on the organisation (Julie is the best at the spreadsheets, rotas and paraphernalia that goes with it) due to her job as a Health care assistant for disabled children. I try to keep up but mainly I bring the hands on skills as I’m a bookbinder. We did everything ourselves (not for the faint hearted!) from folding 800 origami butterflies to hang from the ceiling, making concrete planters with Maidenhair ferns for the table centrepieces, designing and printing the save the dates and invites. We had complete control over everything that went into it which was nice as it was a complete reflection of us and no-one else!

To bring our geekiness we had the Star Trek enterprise model for our guestbook and Marvel Avengers figures set in concrete for our table numbers. And for the natural elements, besides the origami, our florist (Your London Florist) made Kokedama (Japanese hanging plants) ferns to hang from the double height space. I always think it’s the details that make it special (that and an open bar!) and people will take that with them after the event. It was a lovely day, tiring but lovely.

What was your first dance?

Our first dance was to ‘Do You Wanna’ by the Arctic Monkeys. It was a disaster! I stepped on Julie’s dress so much. That’s one detail we ran out of time to perfect. We tried to do a foxtrot (learned of course through YouTube) as it was a pretty simple step. Yeah… it wasn’t. We have a video which we will never watch again!

Why did you choose Patchwork for your gift list?

We went to the Most Curious wedding show in Brick Lane, saw the Patchwork stand and thought it seemed like a really good idea. I mean it makes sense for modern day couples who already live together and therefore have gravy boats and wine glasses. Pooling individual gifts into a collective is perfect.

What did you decide to fund?

We wanted to fund our honeymoon to Mauritius as we were on a tight budget for the wedding, with nothing left for the honeymoon. Julie’s family is from Mauritius and I had never been so we wanted to do a luxury boutique hotel and then stay at her dad’s and see family – a best of both kind of thing, so the funds went to all kinds of stuff from cocktails to a private boat trip.

We were really grateful to everyone for making it possible. It was a big success. And I think it helped that our friends and family could relate to where we wanted to go. It made it easier for more traditional guests to get on board with that ‘new fandangle interweb’ instead of a physical gift.

And finally, would you recommend your trip to other honeymooners?

Who doesn’t want to go to a tropical island! Mauritius is great and I know we are a bit biased but it does have something for everyone, from luxury to camping and everything in between.


 

Thank you Patrick & Julie for sharing your story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork.

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Top 10 UK Honeymoon Destination Ideas for 2017

Top UK Honeymoon Destinations

Whether you’re honeymooning on a budget, limited for time, need to take the kids or pets, or just want to celebrate your marriage by exploring the beauty of Britain, we’ve got 10 brilliant UK honeymoon destination ideas for summer 2017.

Find laid-back luxury in London

Our first UK honeymoon destination is our cosmopolitan capital. London has much to offer honeymooners, from must-see sites in the Centre to hip bars in the East. But if you want to relax and enjoy a truly luxurious London honeymoon, head West to stay at the Artist Residence between stylish Belgravia and Chelsea. A chic London bolt-hole with an intimate 10 rooms, its own cocktail bar and an all-day restaurant it has a super lux yet laid-back vibe and is perfectly positioned with the whole of the city on your doorstep.

Things to do:

Visit the beautiful V&A Museum of Art & Design to enjoy their summer exhibitions including ‘Shaping Fashion’ showcasing Spanish couturier Balenciaga, where you can drool over decadent silk gowns. Then dine like royalty with their recreation of Queen Victoria’s Afternoon Tea in the exquisite Morris Room. For a budget-conscious alternative (but still in sight of a real palace) take a picnic in to St. James Park. Set in the heart of ceremonial London, the oldest of London’s Royal Parks is an oasis of peace for newlyweds; with a lake, the Tiffany fountain and its own lovebirds – the famous pelicans.

Hopefully summer in the city will mean sunshine, but a rainy day is the perfect excuse to cosy down together in the beautifully restored Electric Cinema in Notting Hill. Spend an afternoon watching arthouse, classic or mainstream flicks from red velvet-covered double beds while a waiter delivers you cocktails. Then step out onto the Portobello Road and head up to The Dock Kitchen for dinner and a pick-me-up. Located in a stylish Victorian Wharf building this experimental restaurant with rooftop bar overlooks the Grand Union Canal. Perfect for people watching on a balmy summer’s evening with a chilled bottle of wine.

Top UK Honeymoon Destinations

source: artistresidencelondon.co.uk

Enjoy family fun in Norfolk

Cooler than the Cotswolds, quieter than Suffolk – cheaper than both. Norfolk, with its thriving independent scene, quirky festivals, big skies and rolling hills, is also one of the driest areas of the UK. So you might not need your umbrellas on the beach.

Where to stay:

The Victoria Inn and Ancient House at the Holkham Estate are nestled in an especially romantic setting in the windswept Norfolk countryside and boast beautifully appointed en suite rooms. After a brisk walk to flush your cheeks on nearby Holkham Beach, guests can enjoy relaxing in the peaceful and private walled rose garden of the Ancient House, or enjoy a modern British menu at the hotel restaurant which uses seasonal and locally produced ingredients. Children are welcome and dogs can stay in the rooms at the Victoria Inn.

Best place to eat:

For lunch head to The White Horse at Brancaster to enjoy the freshest of locally caught seafood including oysters during the season. Take in the spectacular views across the Norfolk Coastal Path and the tidal marshes and if you’re lucky, you might even catch Cyril or Ben, the next door neighbour ‘mussel men’ cleaning and netting their mussels for delivery to the kitchen door.

Getting around:

Exercise kids and dogs as you wander along beautiful sandy beaches to between five star pub stops along the coast. And if you want an even more more leisurely way to enjoy the scenery, you can take a steam train ride along the Wells Walsingham Railway full of old England charm and eccentricity – with five bridges en route for extra excitement.  

Top UK Honeymoon Destinations

source: holkham.co.uk

Discover True Romance in Margate 

Grab your bucket and spade – Margate has recently put itself back on the map as a desirably hip destination, so much so that it has been renamed by some as ‘Shoreditch-on-Sea’. Perfect for couples that long for salty beach-kisses and some good old fashioned fun, with an ironic twist.

Only two hours from London, Margate has burst back to life with a spruced up version of its famous kitsch past thanks to the sleek new Turner Contemporary Gallery and a wave of independent retailers. You’ll still find striped deckchairs and sticks of rock but you’ll now find ultra-cool Margate born brands like Haeckels, alongside vintage furniture shops and new pizza places like the Great British Pizza Co.

What to do:

Get your adrenalin pumping on some heart-stopping rides at the newly reopened Dreamland; spend the day on roller-coasters and eating candy floss against a backdrop of vintage cool and modern design. You can’t visit Margate without sharing a traditional vinegar soaked fish ‘n’ chips (grab a large one from Mario’s) then head down to the beach for frolics at sunset and see why Turner described the skies here as ‘the loveliest in Europe’.

Where to stay:

If you’re looking for somewhere super stylish to stay, The Reading Rooms offer the perfect antidote to Margate’s colourful kitsch. Muted colours complement this beautifully restored Georgian townhouse and make this luxury boutique hotel an oasis of calm for couples seeking pared-back grandeur. Top tip: Make sure you book a room with a roll-top bath to enjoy champagne and bubbles.

Top UK Honeymoon Destinations

source: rhymeandribbons.com

Enjoy an outdoor adventure in Cornwall 

Boasting the best surf in the UK, amazing Michelin star restaurants and as much art and culture as you can shake a stick at you’d be pushed to find a soggy pasty in Cornwall these days. But you will find beautiful villages with vibrant communities that welcome all-comers, tons for kids to do and 50 beaches are dog-friendly too!

Cornwall offers great self-catering options such as Treworgey Cottages in the Looe River Valley, where children and dogs are welcome. With picture perfect cottages covered in honeysuckle, a horse riding centre, heated swimming pool, a small petting farm and an indoor beach for rainy days, this is the perfect place for couples honeymooning with kids in tow. 

Things to do:

Take a day trip by boat to the stunning Looe Island Nature Reserve. A one time haunt for smugglers and a sanctuary for sea and woodland birds, this tiny island has a fascinating history and the waters around it teem with marine wildlife.

Book a family surf lesson with the passionate people at award winning Sennen Surf Centre. Crystal clear waters, golden sands and consistent surf make this place a winner. After working up an appetite on the rollers, check out beach side restaurant Benn Tunnicliffe restaurant that promises ‘Good food and family time in beautiful surroundings’. 

Don’t miss a trip to St. Ives; with its cobbled charm, quaint cottages and literary heritage it’s the perfect place to take in some culture including the Tate Modern GalleryBarbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden. And if you’re near Penzance head to the Jubilee Pool, a recently refurbished Art Deco Lido perfect for an invigorating sea water swim.

10 UK Honeymoon Destinations

source: jubileepool.co.uk

Find a family paradise on the Scilly Isles

Stay close to home on a sub-tropical family honeymoon with a large dollop of Enid Blyton time-warp. Uncrowded, unspoilt, and surrounded by golden-sanded beaches, the Scilly Isles archipelago really are a paradise on your doorstep. Located at the most Southwesterly point of the UK and an area of outstanding natural beauty, these islands are rugged, remote and virtually car-free, making this a great holiday for couples who want to escape it all or families who want the freedom of a get-out-there-and-explore holiday without the long haul flight.

Getting around:

Arrive at your island destination by propellor plane or ferry and experience a simpler way of life. Visit www.islesofscilly-travel.co.uk for travel options. Island hopping by boat is a fantastic way to see marine wildlife and explore some of the uninhabited islands. Check out www.islandseasafaris.co.uk for day trips from St. Mary’s; go on their ‘Shipwrecks, Seals and Seabirds’ excursion for the best of the island sights.

Things to do:

The islands, some with as few as 80 inhabitants, are dotted with small farms and farm shops, walking and cycling routes and boast a wealth of ancient remains, castles and towers as well as amazing local produce and seafood. A sub-tropical microclimate make the Scilly Isles a unique place to see flora and fauna not found on the mainland and the gardens at Tresco Abbey are considered to be the UK’s most outstanding horticultural paradise. You might even spot a red squirrel, now almost extinct on the mainland.

Stay at Tresco Sea Garden Cottages with sailing, a beach cafe, swimming pool, tennis courts and a gym to keep everyone happy. All cottages also have wi-fi and satellite TV for when the kids have had enough of playing Enid Blyton style.

Eat at Juliet’s Garden on St. Mary’s  to enjoy seafood, steak or vegetarian dishes and Artisan Cornish cheeses on the beautiful terrace providing breathtaking views across the harbour and the other islands.

Don’t miss: Troytown Farm on St. Agnes for their spectacular ice-cream made from their small herd of 9 dairy cows.

Top UK honeymoon destinations

source: smithandfamily.co.uk

Celebrate your love-story on the Yorkshire Moors

Live out your own Gothic love story in our next UK honeymoon destination – the rugged and romantic Yorkshire dales. Take a blustery walk in the Bronte sisters’ footsteps and discover the atmospheric ruins, dramatic skies, and windswept moorland that inspired them. Then look forward to cosy evenings snuggled up with a glass of red in front of a roaring fire.

Things to do:

Embrace your rebellious spirit and stay in a bright red Gypsy van, ‘Carmen’, set in a peaceful glade at historic Markington Hall in North Yorkshire with bountiful welcome hampers, your own campfire, a nearby river to fish and frolic in and the moors at your doorstep.

For long walks, breathtaking scenery and dramatic views, Bronte Falls at Haworth, Sutton Bank on the North York Moors, Aysgarth Falls in the Yorkshire Dales, and Hardcastle Crags at Hebden Bridge are all must-dos. Then for a real treat, book a table at the michelin-starred Black Swan at Oldstead. With a mix of traditional Yorkshire warmth and a dynamic and creative menu, this not-to-be-missed restaurant is perfectly located on the edge of the North York Moors National Park.

Top UK Honeymoon Destinations

source: markingtonhall.co.uk

Go free wheeling in Wales

Be the envy of everyone else on the road behind the wheel of your very own classic original VW Campervan like ‘Lily’ from Pembrokeshire Classic Campers. Lovingly restored and ready to take you on your honeymoon adventure. Then it’s just you two and the open road, with the wind in your hair and Wales at your feet.

With activities in the area ranging from canoeing and surfing, to hang-gliding and golf you’ll find adventure awaits at every stop-off.

Things to do:

Highlights include Caerphilly Castle, the stunning coastlines of the Mumbles and the Gower peninsula. If your honeymooning in May – June you can catch the Literary festival at Hay-on-Wye and if you’re headed to Wales in August don’t miss the annual Jazz festival in the Brecon Beacons National Park. Long drives require constant supplies of Welsh rarebit (the world’s finest cheese on toast) so make sure you’re well stocked up.

10 UK Honeymoon Destinations

source: pembrokeshireclassiccampers.co.uk

Explore Connemara on horseback

Always wished you lived in a castle? Pretend you do for a week at luxurious Ballynahinch Castle in Ireland. Situated in the heart of Connemara, this stunning castle hotel is set in 450 acres so it’s easy to wander through the woodland together imagining it’s all yours.

Things to do:

Located along the wild Atlantic Way, set against the stunning backdrop of the 12 Bens mountain range, Ballynahinch is the perfect base for exploring the area either by car, on foot, or even on horseback.

Riding school Erislannan Manor close to the castle can organise riding and trekking on Connemara ponies for which the region is known. For guided walks, island trips and general advice on exploring this stunning part of Ireland, contact Walk Connemara.

If you’re feeling adventurous, explore the fairytale-like Kylemore Abbey and take a walk hand-in-hand around the woodland and lakes in this1,000 acre estate. And if you’re feeling lazy, enjoy a pint (or two) in a typical Irish village, such as Cong, famous as the location shoot for the 1951 John Wayne film ‘The Quiet Man’.

10 UK Honeymoon Destinations

source: kylemoreabbey.com

Live like kings in a Scottish Castle

Rich in history, with stunning cities, mysterious lochs and delicious whiskey to discover, Scotland is the perfect place for a honeymoon fling. And if you really want a honeymoon fit for Kings why not stay in a real Scottish castle? Just 8 miles from Edinburgh Dalhousie Castle  is a 13th century fortress on the picturesque banks of the river Esk. This castle hotel and spa has traditional decor and uses a lot of tartan so won’t necessarily win any design awards. But it’s interior style is certainly warm and welcoming. And you get to sleep in a four-poster bed, in a castle! 

Things to do:

Once you’ve been properly pampered in the spa, have explored the castle grounds and the water-y wilderness beyond head to Edinburgh. Wander around the Grassmarket and Victoria Street to browse bustling independent shops, artisan stores and take your pick from the excellent range of lunch options in this vibrant al fresco setting. Then visit the magnificent Edinburgh castle for afternoon tea. Spend an elegant evening starting with cocktails at Panda & Sons on Queen Street, then take a stroll back up towards the castle to dine at the lavish and decadent Gothic institution The Witchery by the Castle

Top 10 UK Honeymoon Destinations

source: dalhousiecastle.co.uk

Fall madly in love in Manchester

Our final UK honeymoon destination is Manchester. Whether you were there back in the day – or just wish you had been – go all-out with a love fuelled Manchester weekender. The best bit? Now you’re grown ups you can dance together till dawn, then sink into a luxury king size bed rather than crash on your mate’s saggy sofa.

Check out The Red Door in Deansgate for cocktails and classic tunes – open till 4.00am on Fridays and Saturdays. For a more chilled out night, get yourselves to the Soup Kitchen, award winning canteen and bar with communal tables, vegan food and a great selection of cask ales. Located in Manchester’s Northern Quarter District, this is your go-to destination for live music, film nights, comedy events and art exhibitions. Or head to Matt & Phred’s Jazz Club in the Northern Quarter. Showcasing the hottest jazz talent, as well as a host of other genres, this place also doubles as a restaurant with great pizzas and sharing plates and has a fantastic selection of wines and a great cocktail list.

Where to stay:

If you want to avoid disapproving glances from hotel receptionists when you rock up at 6am, book yourself an apartment so you can come and go as you please. To experience stunning loft living in an historic 200 year old building a stone’s throw away from the city’s bars and clubs check out the Old Mill on Airbnb.

10 UK Honeymoon Destinations

source: visitmanchester.com

Tips for Organising a Party with Patchwork

organise a party with patchwork

If you’re planning to use Patchwork to organise a party, check out our top tips before you get started:

Keep it simple

The secret to getting people to help with a party is to be clear about the plan, set out a range of specific ways they can help and then allow them to decide what they’d like to do.

Whilst people don’t respond well to vague pleas for help, they also don’t like to be assigned tasks that may not suit their skills, available time or interest. So clarity and choice is key.

Start out by clearly setting out the plan for the party, who it’s for and why. It helps if you can summarise all of this in your patchwork title e.g. ‘Ben’s surprise 30th party’, ‘Kate’s hen do in Copenhagen’, ‘Elise’s baby shower’. Then use the patchwork description to explain exactly what it is you want people to do i.e:

‘To celebrate [insert name] [insert occasion] we want to organise the best party ever. And we’re hoping you can all help. Please click around the patchwork below and show your love for [insert name] by choosing something to fund, make or do. Love and thanks, [your name].’

patchwork party

Make it personal

Don’t be afraid to make your patchwork personal. Use your images and words to share more about what is it you want and who it’s for. If you’re organising a party for a friend, remind everyone how much they love him with pictures of him and an anecdote or two.

This doesn’t have to mean creating a patchwork from scratch. You can customise one of our readymade party patchworks, then simply tweak a few words to personalise it and add or delete patches to suit your needs.

You can also add a banner image and a profile photo. So there are lots of opportunities for your friends to see the giftee’s happy face, remember how much they love them, and then give generously!

Give options to fund, make or do

While some people will be cash rich and time poor, others will be the opposite. One friend might have a couple of hours to bake a cake but not much money to buy a gift. Another might want to flex their creative skills to show their love. And someone else might just prefer to pay towards a barrel of beer. There are times in our lives when we are more interested and able to contribute cash, time or skills to help make a party happen – so make sure all the options are available.

Whether you want to customise one of our readymade party patchworks or create your own from scratch you’ll see that you have the ability to assign an action to each patch. Automatically set to ‘Fund’, you can set a patch to ask people to ‘Make’ or ‘Do’.

Asking people upfront to fund a wedding party or baby shower might feel a bit uncomfortable. So including make and do options in a patchwork removes any awkwardness around the money side of things. While most people will opt for the ease of giving money, they will be grateful for having been given the choice.

patchwork party

Be specific about quantities

If you need 10 cakes made for the dessert table, add an image of a cake to a patch, set it to ‘Make’ and then set your quantity to 10. Then one person can choose to bake ten or 10 people can choose to bake one. Either way, once you’ve got 10 cakes being made this patch will say ‘Sold out’ for future contributors.

In your account you’ll then be able to see the person(s) who has pledged to bake your cakes so you can send individual or group messages to all bakers to discuss the details.

This same principle applies to the 2 people you need to help with decorations, the 5 hours of DJ-ing required, the 15 dishes you need making, the 5 embarrassing hen do games that need organising or the 1 new-baby playlist that needs putting together.

Use your patchwork as an invite

You can add an event date in your patchwork and include venue address, contact email and any other event details. This means your page can act as an invite/event page as well as a DIY party planning tool. Handy, not just to keep all the party info in one place, but because people visiting your page to find out the plan will be inspired to help while they are there.

Gift your party patchwork

If you’re organising a party for a friend, you can ‘Gift’ them their patchwork once the party’s over so that they can read everyone’s messages and send thanks when they’re ready.

All you need to do is ‘Gift’ the patchwork from your account by adding their email address and a message, then they’ll be sent a unique login and instructions to see their gift page. A gifted Patchwork page will show your title, description and all the patch images and descriptions – which you can edit if you like. But it wont show prices or give the option to fund anymore, as this page is presented to the person receiving the gift. This person will be able to see all the messages from friends at the bottom of the patchwork (along with their happy faces if they choose to upload photos too). And then they can click to ‘Send thanks’ when they are ready.

Ready to start your patchwork? Browse our customisable party templates here.

Tips for Organising a Group Gift with Patchwork

If you’re planning to use Patchwork to organise a group gift for a loved one check out our top tips before you get started:

Make it obvious

Most people have chipped in towards a gift for a friend, work colleague or family member before, so the principle behind Patchwork won’t be a new concept. Your friends will be grateful for an easy and secure way to contribute towards a present without having to do a bank transfer or dig out some cash to chuck in a hat. All you need to do is show them the gift you’re asking them to contribute towards and tell them who it’s for and why.

It helps if you can summarise the plan in your patchwork title e.g. ‘A cot for the new baby’, ‘Holly’s Christmas Handbag’ or ‘A bee hive for mum’s 60th’.  Then use the patchwork description to explain exactly what it is you want people to do, i.e:

‘There’s really only one thing [insert name] really wants/needs for their [insert occasion] and so instead of buying surprise gifts I thought it’d be nice if we could all chip in towards one. Just click around the patchwork to contribute whatever you can and leave a message with your gift at the end. Love and thanks, [your name].’

patchwork group gift

Make it personal

You’re inviting friends to chip in towards a gift for someone they know and love, so make sure your request feels personal. Use your words to share not just an idea for a group gift but also to say something about the person you all care about.

You can add a banner image, a profile image and include your own photos within your patchwork. So there are lots of opportunities for all those people contributing to see the face of the person you’ll celebrating, remember how much they love them – and then give generously!

Break it down

If you’re looking for inspiration for a group gift we’ve got tons of templates for you to choose from. So whether it’s a new bike, a work of art, a new tattoo, a cookery course, a vegetable patch or a weekend in Paris, you’ll find a readymade patchwork to customise – already broken down into a range of individually priced pieces.

However if we don’t have a template for the gift you want to fund you can do one of two things:

Create your own from scratch:

The easiest and quickest way to do this is to add a single image to your patchwork page and give it an affordable price – say £10. Then people who visit your page can simply press ‘Fund’ and then adjust the item quantity in the basket to increase their contribution i.e. 5 x £10 = £50 total. However breaking down a big ticket item or experience into a patchwork of component parts makes for a much more fun and engaging experience for contributors – allowing them to choose which piece of the gift to fund according to their budget and interest.

Tell us:

Our readymade patchworks are inspired by our users, so if you tell us what you want to fund, and we think it might be popular, we will create a new readymade patchwork for you and others to use made up of copyright-free imagery. Alternatively, if you have a particular image that you’d like us to ‘patchwork’ for you – you can email hello@patchworkit.com and we’ll split it into 2, 4, 6 or 8 pieces for you.

Spread the cost

All of our readymade group gift patchworks contain a number of different priced patches. You can adjust these set prices when you customise one of our templates. But we do recommend that you retain a range of prices across your patchwork, whether you customise or create from scratch, so everyone can afford to contribute something. Each patch can be priced between £1 – £500 and the maximum one person can contribute in one transaction is £1300.

group gift

Don’t limit your guests choice of gifts

You can set a quantity for each item or experience within a patch. So if you’re organising a surprise trip to Paris for your mum and dad’s anniversary you might want to include 2 return Eurostar tickets, 3 nights in a hotel and 1 dinner for two at the Moulin Rouge. To do this just click to answer the question ‘How many do you want?’ after you’ve set the price for each patch, then enter the number you want. Then, once this number of items or experiences have been bought, the patches will say ‘Sold out’.

This makes sense for one-off items or experiences, so that the people who choose to give these gifts know that they have paid for a particular trip or treat. But overall we recommend you leave most patch items ‘unlimited’. Particularly things people will want a lot of – like meals or metro tickets, baguettes or glasses of wine.

And remember you don’t have to be too literal. Creating a patchwork is a fun and practical way to breakdown the cost of a big ticket item. But you don’t need to be too precise. For example, everyone knows a bike has two wheels, one saddle and a bell. But if you want to customise our children’s bike for a birthday present, it makes sense to leave all the patches unlimited. It really doesn’t matter if 10 people contribute towards the basket. Once you’ve collected all the cash gifts, bought the bike and your child is happily riding along with their teddy in the basket, you can take a photo and upload it to your Patchwork account. Then just choose to ‘Thank by patch’ to send the photo along with a message to all of the individuals who bought this gift.

Leaving the majority of your patch items ‘unlimited’ enables you to collect the maximum funds and ensure people don’t arrive at the patchwork to find everything has ‘sold out’.

Gift your patchwork

Once you’re ready, you can present your Patchwork page to the person receiving your group gift so they can see the digital version of their gift or experience, read everyone’s messages and send thanks when they are ready.

All you need to do is ‘Gift’ the patchwork from your account by adding their email address and a message and they’ll be sent a unique login and instructions to see their gift page. A gifted Patchwork page will show your title, description and all the patch images and descriptions – which you can edit if you like. But it wont show prices or give the option to fund anymore as this page is presented to the person receiving the gift. This person will be able to see all the messages from friends at the bottom of the patchwork (along with their happy faces if they choose to upload photos too). And then they can click to ‘Send thanks’ when they’re ready.

Don’t forget to say thank you

You can prepare an automatic thank you before you publish your patchwork so that people contributing can see a message (and a photo of the person you’re celebrating) as soon as they’ve contributed. This is this easiest way to immediately show appreciation to those giving a gift. But with details of contributors’ names and emails (postal addresses are optional) in the Patchwork account, along with a record of what people have bought, how much they’ve spent and the message they left, it’s easy for you and/or the person receiving the gift to thank everyone properly later.

Patchwork creators and those who are gifted a patchwork can thank their friends via their Patchwork account. You can do this individually, by patch or as a group with an image and a message in an email. And if you’d like to post thank you cards you can download a CSV spreadsheet of everyone’s details from your account, then send thank you cards using our 20% discount with our print partner MOO.

Ready to start your patchwork? Browse customisable templates here.

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