Meet Fiona, our wedding guru
Tell us a bit about your background in the world of weddings
Fiona tells us that when she decided to tie the knot in 2007, she found herself a bit disappointed by the limited choice of online wedding registries. So, she decided to leave her corporate job and set up a specialist online registry herself, called The Wedding Gift List. This was the site that later merged with Yuppiechef late in 2013.
Which five products do you think should be on a registry without a doubt and why?
1. Pretty much anything from Le Creuset’s cast iron range which will last you a lifetime. A classic is the Le Creuset 5.3 litre Round Cast Iron Cocotte.
2. The 6 piece knife block set by Wüsthof – you might think the kitchen knives you bought years ago are fine but a really decent set will change the way you cook forever.
3. KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer – so it’s an absolute wedding gift classic, but there’s good reason for it.
4. Weber Premium Grill or the Big Green Egg – Yes, a few family members may have to club together for this one, but a large, great quality, long-lasting braai is a must for all South Africans, and where better to ask for it than on your wedding registry?
5. A chic but classic table centrepiece like this Menu Water Jug or this Philippi Bouquet Vase will wow your guests over and over again.
Which two trends can we look out for in the upcoming wedding registry season?
Now that we offer our registry customers a useful registry planning guide called Starter Collections, Fiona predicts that we’ll be able to see what’s ‘trending’ with our couples. At the moment there seems to be lots of love for items from the Soft and Pretty Collection and the Epicurean & Entertainer Collection – two opposing styles which is an interesting insight!
Weirdest gift you’ve seen on a registry?
‘Not necessarily weird, but I once had a client request a 112 piece silver plated cutlery set for her registry. She wanted only the best, so I sourced from Carrs Silver in England – the best silversmiths in the world. The total cost of the set was R45,000 but in order to make it affordable for their guests, we split the set up ‘virtually’ for her gift list, into sets of two forks, two spoons, etc. Every small set of two was bought, and so she got her full, beautiful cutlery set shipped over from the UK!’ Now that’s customer service, Fiona, and why you fit right in at Yuppiechef.
Which new feature on the Yuppiechef wedding registry have you received the best feedback on?
From all of Fiona’s dealings with brides to be, it seems folks are loving using the new Starter Collections and personalising their registries more with cover pic choices, their own photo and the personal message. Nice, hey?
Top tip for future brides to be?
Here’s a gem from Fiona – book your venue first, she says. There’s a shortage of great venues in peak season and a great venue will make or break the atmosphere of your big day. And more importantly – don’t stress. Having gone through it all, Fiona would know that it feels like it’s the most important day in the whole world, but as long as guests have a drink of something in their hands and some great food, the night will turn out just as you’d hoped! Good advice, wedding guru.
So, tell us about the wedding day of an English rose such as yourself?
‘Even though we got married back in England, at the family home where I grew up, which was very special, most of the planning was done from here and therefore much of the inspiration was South African or Cape inspired. Our flowers, for example, were proteas and arum lilies, the bridesmaids and page boys wore Madiba-esque high-neck tops (but without the crazy colours!) and the wine we drank was, of course, South African. We couldn’t have served anything else what with my husband being a Cape wine producer!’ Yes, with Hilton Vineyard’s wine on your table, we can imagine.
How would you deal with unwanted gifts?
Fiona says that her personal unwanted gifts go into the ‘pressie drawer’. Hilarious. But also adds wisely, that luckily with a Yuppiechef registry you’ll never have that problem, since you can swap and exchange gifts before you make your final choice for delivery. It’s one of the very best features of a Yuppiechef registry, oh, la la.
So, there you have it folks. That’s the face behind our Online Wedding Registry. It’s great to have you aboard, Fiona.