The Dreys Sittingbourne

Halloween at The Dreys Wedding Venue in Sittingbourne

Wedding venues in Sittingbourne

Halloween at The Dreys

Last night things got frighteningly good down at The Dreys Wedding Venue in Sittingbourne.

Hosting a family friendly Halloween & Fireworks night. The Dreys got into it’s own fancy dress costume and changed from being a stunning fairytale woodland wedding venue, into spooky outdoor fright fest.

Families from all over Kent descended on the Dreys, which is situated in the middle of the Kent Downs, for this spectacular occasion.

Venue Background

The Dreys is steeped in history and is a family run woodland wedding venue. Sitting in the middle of over 75 acres of beautiful woodland, The Dreys stands alone in it’s unique style and layout.

Making it the ideal wedding venue for couples looking for something extraordinary.

The drive into the venue itself, takes you through a winding forest road, that is lined with exquisite festoon lighting, like something from a Hollywood fairytale movie.

The path finally leads you into the venue and sets the mood for the rest of the experience.

With the ability to host between 50 to 500 guests, The Dreys definitely ticks all of the boxes when it comes to finding a Wedding venue in Sittingbourne.

And with a late license (2am to be exact), you can be assured that if your guests like to party until the early hours, The Dreys can accommodate.

Having provided wedding DJs at the Dreys, we can also comment on their in-house sound system, a QSC setup that blows other speaker systems out of the water.

We usually insist on using our own set of FBT CS1000 speakers when we DJ at wedding venues, but this is one of the the only occasions where would can honestly say that we prefer the venues own system.

Our setup times is drastically reduced and the sound quality and clarity from the in-house system is amazing.

The transformation

Bonfire night at The Dreys

The Dreys is typically decked out with festoon lighting, stunning vintage furniture and a charm unlike any other venue in Sittingbourne.

But this weekend saw the venue transform from cool to cruel with the the addition of spider webs, scary pumpkins, and some clever uplighting from yours truly.

Creating the perfect atmosphere for this ghoulish occasion.

Whilst we usually avoid reds and greens when providing uplighting for wedding venues, this weekend it was more than appropriate to provide a scary atmosphere for the guests.

With our ADJ QA5 wireless uplighters, we were able to light up whole 1ooft trees, making the woodland surroundings a little eerie for the evening.

Easily achievable with the use of our wireless ADJ DMX airstream Bridge and iPad set up.

The food

With the temperature finally dropping, The brilliant staff at The Dreys kicked off the winter season in true British fashion by serving up a selection of heart warming favourites.

Mulled wine, Hot chocolate with toasted marshmallows and our own personal favourite, warm toffee cider !

Wedding venue in Sittingbourne

The food was kept simple, but jaw droopingly good. Home made brain (ahem .. beef) burgers, and mouthwatering hotdogs kept the children and parents fuelled for the fun for the whole evening.

Popcorn was served up in the main tent, much to the delight of my 2 children.

Funnily enough, I never got offered any popcorn by either of mine. They were too quick to eat it !

Kids activities

Having brought my own family to this event, it was only too right that I ask my own 7 years old daughter her thoughts on the evening …..

Her answer, “omg, it was absolutely awesome Dad, can we come back tomorrow”.

The Dreys Sittingbourne

So there you have it, if my 7 year old loved it, then the chances are every other child did too.

With arts and crafts, dancing competitions, children’s entertainers, prizes for the best halloween competition and some Transylvanian tunes pumping through our speakers.

The kids were kept entertained until the giant bonfire and fireworks show.

Giant bonfire

We have all seen bonfires, but have you see a GIANT bonfire ! …. Well, if not, check out the video at the bottom of the page to see what one looks like.

Families stood in awe of the giant ball of flame, that was safely guarded by fire marshals, and soaked up the heat whilst waiting for the fireworks show to begin.

If you haven’t stood in front of a giant bonfire whilst sipping mulled wine with your family, I can highly recommend it.

Fireworks show

Also in attendance with my daughter was my 4 year old son. I had been a little worried about the noise of the fireworks show, but needn’t have been.

The Dreys had all bases covered, and provided a stunning low noise fireworks show, which kept the younger kids focused on the visual elements of the show, rather than the noise.

This was music to my ears, excuse the pun, as he laughed and smiled away, rather than covering his ears in fear.

I asked him what he thought of the show, his response “I LOVED IT !”

Evening disco

Outdoor wedding venue sittingbourne

All that was left to do now was party !

Having worked with The Dreys and providing DJs for Weddings throughout the year, we were delighted when the owner of the venue, Jackie, us asked if we could provide a the disco for the evenings entertainment.

Of course we jumped at the chance, and she kindly invited our families along with us, which was a lovely personal touch.

I often tell my daughter that I am off to DJ at Weddings every weekend, so it was nice for her too see her Dad in action behind my Pioneer XDJ-RX DJ controller.

Now if you were there, it might be the only time you hear me play the Ghostbusters theme tune, so I hope you made the most of it !

But if not, then unless you put it on your “must play” list at your wedding or event, then there is a good chance it was a moment in history that will never be repeated.

Well, until next year of course (cue spooky laugh).

We highly recommend you check out The Dreys Wedding venue for your big day. We absolutely love a woodland wedding and this venue hits all the right notes.

Find them at https://thedreys.co.uk

Check out our full youtube video of the event HERE

A picture of a wedding in Paphos

What would I change about my own Wedding

My Wedding – The good, the bad, and the ugly

After being in the wedding and events industry for time now, we thought it was time to reflect.

Having attended over 100 weddings across Essex, London & Kent, we have seen it all. And it has made us ponder….

If we could go back in time, what we change about or own wedding days !

Well. Read on to find out.

But wait !

Before I get too deep into this article, and in case my beautiful wife decides to read this, do not panic!

Looking back at our special day, there really isn’t a lot that I would have changed.

That said, I will share my experience based on that day, combined with the knowledge I have acquired through the eye of a mobile DJ in Essex.

A wedding abroad

On an extremely warm September afternoon, my wife and I tied the knot in the most beautiful setting, a picturesque Taverna style hotel in Paphos, Cyprus.

The good

Weekday or Weekend.

My wedding was abroad, which meant every single one of the 80+ adult guests was free from work, able to let their hair down and were mostly already a few days into relaxing holiday.

And believe me, this made for an incredible party.

This leads me onto my first point.

Try your best to ensure as many of your guests as possible are able to take the following day off work!

If you are lucky enough to have the funds for a Weekend wedding, then you should have this covered.

But if you are getting married on a week day, please emphasise the fact you want it to be a great party.

Encourage your family and friends to take a day annual leave, and provide themsleves with the opportunity to enjoy the day

Furthermore, to recover from the multiple visits to the bar, and hours of dancing to your DJ.

This will make a huge difference!

 

Evening buffet.

Personally I believe my wife, and I got this spot on.

Served up at 10 pm… meat and cheese platters.

Guests could grab a handful of food, sink it on route to the bar, then head straight back to the dance floor to dance the night away to our wedding DJ.

Whilst observing many a wedding from our rustic DJ booth, we see the buffet arrive, and quite often we announce its imminent arrival.

Believe me, if you have a large or heavy buffet, this will kill your dance floor for up to an hour!

You can not eat fish and chips, or a hamburger whilst dancing.

And when it is sitting in your belly along with a 3 course dinner and eight beers, you will not be dancing the night away.

So OK, maybe this is a little bias, as DJs, all we want to see is a busy dance floor.

Speeches

Mobile wedding DJ’s in Essex see many speeches. Please keep them brief.

Nobody wants to sit through an hour long speech, it’s boring, people sneak out.

On my wedding day, me, my father in law, and the best man (my brother) all kept our speeches to less than 10 minutes each.

Don’t get me wrong, none of us are great public speakers, but everyone enjoyed a warm heartfelt moment from each of us.

Consequntly, before any of our guests began yawning we were done.

And it flowed brilliantly into the next stage of the evening.

Finish time

End your day on a high and do not drag it out.

An 11 pm close meant that every single guest was still in attendance to give us the send off we felt we deserved, and no one struggled to stay to the end.

As a wedding DJ we often see a party go on for a little too long, people sneak out, and the atmosphere can sometimes fade away.

A late finish isn’t always a great finish, and personally I think we got this spot on.

The bad

Photos

For any Photographers reading this, including our own Scott Hammond Photography, please do not be offended.

I know you do an incredible job, as did my photographer.

BUT, please do not make the same mistake that we did.

We spent far too long with our photographer posing for shots that were not so natural, whilst we could have been dancing the afternoon away and enjoying our wedding with our guests.

And guess what pictures are hanging on my wall… the natural ones !

Laughing with friends, hugging family, blissfully unaware of the photograph being taken.

We got it wrong, so please do not make the same mistake we did!

Food

Our circumstances were slightly different, as a wedding abroad meant that we were unable to try our food prior to the day itself.

But I am going to say it… we ended up with the dreaded dry wedding chicken.

As well as hiring an awesome wedding DJ, please make sure you dip a little deeper into that pocket and hire a great caterer.

The alone will make a huge difference to the experience of your friends and family in attendance.

It would be unfair to say our food was bad, but it could have been better.

In summary

We had the most incredible day, and we enjoyed every moment.

We wanted our wedding to be a lively affair with great music and a party atmosphere from start to finish.

With an good mobile DJ, and incredible band, music and dancing was the order of the day.

We had a free bar, and the guests took full advantage.

Our plan paid off, and our guests repeatedly tell us to this day that it was “the best wedding ever”‘.

My final advice (and speaking from experience) would be to think of what you want your day to be.

A party? A quiet celebration? A formal affair, with conversation and good food?

Or maybe a combination of all of those things?

Tailor your wedding to provide you with the day you want. Do not buckle to the pressure of the all too regular wedding routine.

Order good food (but not a huge buffet), pay for the bar bill, do not finish too late, and of course have a great Wedding DJ.

Thank you, and good night

hire a good wedding in essex

Top reasons you need to hire a good Wedding DJ in Essex

Correspondence

Arranging a wedding isn’t simple, and in order to hire a good wedding DJ in Essex, you have to put in the time and effort to find the right person.

Booking a good wedding DJ is regularly juggled with work and other everyday duties, and time unquestionably becomes the enemy.

Response times

With a wide range of suppliers to speak to, it is essential that you get a quick time response from your chosen DJ.

Let’s be realistic, if the response to your initial enquiry has taken 3 weeks, we can guarantee you that once you have paid your deposit, this response time will now be much slower, and this can truly hinder your planning.

signing of the register

Same day responses

We have heard a wide range of accounts of DJs vanishing off the face of the earth, and this isn’t a circumstance that you need to end up in.

At Fox and Braces we endeavour to respond to our messages the same day, and this will continue to be the case through the lead up to your wedding.

Communicating with venues

We totally comprehend that you may just have restricted time to get organised, and we will do whatever we can to enable things to move along pleasantly.

Your DJ is not only responsible for speaking with you and your partner, but also for communicating with your venue.

A good DJ will dependably address the venue ahead of time of the wedding for various reasons.

photos of a wedding gift

Access

Is there access to the DJ area?

Do they require a duplicate of our insurance and PAT certificates?

Do we have to make the manager aware of our arrival?

Will we be able to unload our equipment without intruding on the procedures of your big day?

These are on the whole inquiries that a good wedding DJ will cover with the venue before they arrive.
You will hear this a lot whilst reading this article, but ‘nothing is left to chance!’.

Building a good relationship with your Wedding DJ

A good wedding DJ will build a strong relationship with their client well in advance of the wedding, and that is exactly what we try to do.

We value the importance of understanding each and every bride and groom and take the time to try to get to know them and their personalities, both as individuals and as a couple.

Building a rapport

By the time the wedding day arrives we feel as though we have well and truly ‘broken the ice’, and our arrival is quite often greeted with a warm reception and even the odd hug.

To continue with this point, because of this relationship that has been built over a number of months, we feel that we are not a DJ for a stranger, and we will do all we can not to let someone down that we have come to know so well.

Dancing Bride Essex

Punctuality

Being late is not an option! A good wedding DJ will allow huge amounts of time in order to travel to your venue and set up.

Our DJ’s will always arrive either on time, or earlier than expected, and nothing is left to chance!

Accounting for traffic

The day time is often spent continuously checking Google maps, and even when the route is clear they always leave early to allow the that unexpected traffic jam.

Furthermore a quality DJ will always be set up and ready to go in advance of their start time.

Ensuring that the wedding day continues to run smoothly, and if timings are ahead of schedule then rest assured, we are ready to start dropping bangers!

Appearance

Over the years we have all seen many a mobile DJ rock up in a tired old baggy polo shirt, a pair of Hi-Tec trainers, and ill fitting jeans.

And quite frankly it is not what you should come to expect when hiring a high quality wedding DJ nowadays.

Your DJ should match the standards of dress of those around them, so you will never see any of our DJs being anything other than smartly dressed even when setting up their equipment.

Equipment

dj for Tipi Wedding Essex

Listing the endless equipment used by Fox and Braces would take all day.

BUT, what I we say is that there is a golf in quality between the DJ companies in Essex that are charging more for their services in comparison to those who are being booked for a fraction of the price.

Speakers

A set of speakers can range from £200 – upwards of £10,000, and there is a reason for this….. Sound quality, and more importantly reliability.

And this leads me on to arguably the most important thing when booking a good wedding DJ……. BACKUPS!

A good DJ will always carry 2 of everything. Spare wires, spare speakers, spare microphone, and the list goes on, you name it, we have 2!

And the reason is obvious….. equipment goes wrong!

We all know it, and when it goes wrong it’s usually at the worst possible time.

But a good DJ will pull that spare from their bag and with absolute professionalism they will carry on as if nothing ever happened.

The music

A groom grabbing his braces

Planning

A good DJ will plan the music for each and every wedding.

Starting from scratch and tailoring the wedding soundtrack to the tastes of the client and their crowd.

Our highly experienced event and wedding DJs take the time to speak with every couple that book with us.

The playlist

Arming themselves with the knowledge that enables them to plan and prepare a wedding playlist.

With a library of thousands of songs a good wedding DJ will plan the music but also give themselves room to manoeuvre on the night.

To summarise….. Don’t just book a DJ, book a Fox and Braces DJ

a picture of 2 wedding djs at a London wedding

Wedding DJ in Essex and London

Wedding DJ in Essex

Fox and Braces hit a turning point a week ago, we have a full time Wedding DJ in Essex.

One of the Directors of the organization, Dave, began maintaining the business full time. We have chosen to do a Q&A session with Dave to discover how he made the transition into a full time wedding and occasion DJ.Wedding DJ London and Essex

Mobile DJ Hire in Essex and London

Q. So, how does it feel to at long last be running Fox and Braces full time ?

A. In short. Totally stunning. My enthusiasm and passion has been DJing from the age of 14.

It was something I somewhat excelled at in my more youthful days, as I DJ’d at relatively every significant setting and club in London and Essex.

Notwithstanding, I before long began a steady occupation in my mid 20’s and gradually floated away from it all. To be back doing what I adore at 36 years old is an astonishing transformation.

Work life balance

On an individual level it has given me such a superior work life balance, as I currently get the chance to do the school run, and invest some much needed time with family.

Professionally, I have returned to being energetic about what I do, which I believe is so vital, as the greater part of us burn through 75% of our lives at work.

Presently when I wake up, I walk downstairs, hit the start button on the Nespresso Coffee machine and I am for all intents and purposes at work !.

The best Wedding DJ in Essex

Q. How would you believe being a full time Director at Fox and Braces will impact the business and how do you feel about your job titel now being Wedding DJ in Essex ?

A. All things considered, our goal has been to be the best wedding and occasions organization in Essex (and Kent, London and Hertfordshire).

Developing the business

I feel like we have developed so rapidly as a business in our first year.

So I am past sure that with the additional hours in the day I have free now, that I can turbo charge the business and keep on developing Fox and Braces into a widely renowned wedding and occasions organization.

Q. Have you changed the manner in which you approach the wedding and occasions you do since going full time ?

Mobile DJ Hire Essex and London

A. Not in any way. Despite everything I invest huge amount of my time arranging music for each and every wedding I DJ at.

I consider it to be the center of our business and the reason we have so many 5 star reviews on Google and Facebook.

Music matters

I really believe that the music we play at weddings and occasions speaks to us as people and as a business and separates us from alternate occasion DJs out there.

I DJ’d at a wedding a week ago and amid the cocktail hour dropped in “Soul Strut” by Lady Daisey, one of the visitors came straight up to me and asked what the tune was.

After I revealed to him he left and remarked, don’t hear many wedding DJ’s playing this kind of stuff, brilliant tune.

Music matters at your Wedding

I believe that is the thing that separates us, and that is something that will dependably stay at the center of Fox and Braces, great, quality music.

Q. So what happened with your full time job, before Fox and Braces?

Change of career

A. Indeed, that one is somewhat of a long story, allow us to simply say it was an occupation that I lost my passion for, and my goal was to accomplish something I adored, which was DJ’ing.

So I worked 20hr days for a year with my colleague, Dan, and we succeeded in making the business succesful enough that I was able to leave that job behind.

Hiring a Wedding DJ in Essex

Q. So what else do you do throughout the day at that point, most likely arranging wedding music doesn’t take up to 8hrs every day.

A. You’d be astonished, I have been known to spend a week on simply getting the music perfect for 1 wedding, yet no, by and large it doesn’t.

Social media

I deal with the messages that get through our site, alter the photographs from our occasions, deal with our social media accounts, including Instagram and Facebook and make changes to our WordPress site.

I am aways looking into new sound and lighting gear and furthermore deal with our 2 different DJs, Matt and Gary. So trust me, my day is full up each and every day.

Q. Discussing Matt and Gary, how are they, how did they come to join the organization ? 

New members

A. Well, we met Gary a year ago through a mutual friend, we immediately began discussing music, and soon thereafter I found that Gary had a fundamentally the same as DJing foundation as I had, with involvement with some of the best bars and clubs in London.

By then we were attempting to deal with the influx of enquiries in our inbox, so we had an frank discussion about him going ahead as a full time DJ, and it simply all came together perfectly.

Wedding DJ in London

We got Gary set up with same rustic style DJ booth we have, got him that equivalent FBT CS1000 speaker audio system and Pioneer XDJ-RX Rekordbox controller and he was prepared to go.

We ran through everything, starting from the ground up, the manner in which we treat our customers and approach to each occasion with a new mentality and he totally got it.

Gary has turned into a completely amazing addition to Fox and Braces.

The best DJ equipment

Matt I have known since I was 12 years of age.

A very skilled DJ and was always on the highest priority on my rundown of DJs I would request to come on board as our 3rd Wedding DJ, and when that point came, Matt gladly accepted the offer.

Serato and Rekordbox

At the time Matt was utilizing Serato music programming and an old Denon DNS3500 MK2, which wasn’t perfect with the way get things done.

(We utilize Rekordbox so our DJs have reinforcement memory stick if there should be an emergency with their laptops).

So subsequent to getting Matt setup with the equivalent Rekordbox programming, which myself and Gary utilize.

We chose to overhaul his speaker system to an arrangement of white RCF Evox 8 V2’s, which believe it or not, we were the principal organization in the UK to recieve an set of the speakers.

Q. So what’s next ?

Wedding DJ Essex and London

A. Next, is more wedding DJ’s, greater occasions, moving into the London wedding scene and beginning to build our reputation in that part of the UK.

We as of late, DJ’d at weddings at The Union Club in London, Soho, and The Rennasaince Hotel in Kings Cross St Pancras.

Both were stunning events and demonstrated that Fox and Braces are now at the level we need to be to begin making waves and building the Fox and Braces DJ brand in London.

Watch this space