Matt & Livonia

Marriage not for you? Have an Eternity Party!

There are thousands of happy couples in the UK who, for any number of reasons, choose not to get married. But what if they still want to celebrate their commitment to one another with their family and friends?

Matt and Livonia decided to do everything they love about weddings and none of the things they don’t, creating a unique occasion that was perfect for them. They named it an ‘Eternity Party’ because they would symbolise their commitment with the exchange of eternity rings.

The event featured a non-religious ceremony conducted by a humanist celebrant; a slap-up meal; a 1950s rock ’n’ roll band; and a photo booth for guests to enjoy, which resulted in a signed photo book for the couple at the end of the night. We asked Matt and Livonia about their special day and how Prezola became a part of it.

How did you meet?

We met in our university student union, almost exactly 10 years ago to the day of our party. Matt was at the bar ordering another snakebite. (Great idea, right?) Livonia spotted him, thought he was cute, and decided to pull his beanie hat down over his face by way of introduction. Matt spun around to confront the culprit and found a stunning girl with a cheeky smirk on her face. He instantly forgot all about the snakebite.

Tell us about the engagement!

Marriage was something neither of us wanted – we preferred the idea of staying together purely for love. But Matt felt it would be romantic to make things more ‘official’ by giving Livonia an eternity ring and asking her to be with him for eternity. So for our anniversary, we went for a weekend stay in our university town of Farnham, where Matt popped the question in the student village. At which point, Livonia completely lost it.

Matt & Livonia

What was your favourite thing about the Eternity Party?

There are so many things! Our band, The Jackpots, were brilliant and had all our guests dancing non-stop… Everyone was raving about the food by Catered by Justin… But the ceremony was the best thing of all. Our celebrant, Zena Birch, wrote us a moving, funny and fascinating ceremony that not only captured the significance of the promises we were making, but told the story of our relationship and actually involved all our guests; our eternity rings were tied together and passed around for each person to hold while thinking of a happy memory they shared with us, ‘imbuing’ the rings with their good thoughts and wishes.

What tip would you give other couples planning a wedding?

The guest list (and consequently the cost) can escalate so fast. We decided not to give out any plus ones so that it would only be people we really wanted to be there. Our party of 80 was perfect – big enough to fill a hall but small enough that we actually had some time with everyone. If you invite 150 guests, the chances are you won’t even get to speak to half of them anyway. It’s better to be ruthless with the invites.

The best advice we received was: DELEGATE EVERYTHING that will need to be done on the day, so you don’t have to worry and can just enjoy it. Your family and friends will be happy to help.

What’s the best thing you’ve done together?

We went on a three-week road trip around California last year, visiting LA, San Francisco, Napa Valley, Yosemite and Sequoia national parks, and Las Vegas. It was freakin’ awesome.

Did you have a honeymoon? If so, tell us all about where you went and what you loved about it.

We had a week in Florence, thanks to our Prezola honeymoon fund. We decided to wait until the day before we were due to leave to actually pick a destination, which made it even more exciting. Florence is such a picturesque and romantic city, bursting with history and world-class art. We stayed at the Cellai Boutique Hotel, where they upgraded us to the honeymoon suite and gave us a bottle of champagne. Prettyyyyyy prettyyyyyy good.

Matt & Livonia

Why did you choose Prezola for your gift list?

Matt’s sister works at Prezola so we already knew how great it is. We’re lucky enough to have most things we need, so we set up a honeymoon fund for any guests who wanted to give us something, and we were blown away by their generosity. We also received a few Prezola gift vouchers.

Tell us all about your Prezola delivery day!

We got some fancy Christy towels made from certified organic cotton. When they arrived, we immediately stripped off and spent the rest of the day just wandering around naked in them.

What brands on Prezola are your favourites?

We like the colours and aesthetic of Habitat’s range, and the minimal, fresh designs of The White Company.

How would you describe your interior style?

Our flat has quite a Scandinavian feel; wood flooring throughout, several pieces of IKEA furniture, cream-coloured walls, and then splashes of vibrant colour here and there, such as terracotta, Indian-style throw on our sofa. The coolest bit of decor we have is a digital art frame that lets you choose from thousands of still and moving artworks to display.

Matt & Livonia

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