THE 2012 Wedding of the Year judges are looking for original weddings and the sentimental stories behind a couple and their special day when judging this year's competition.
Nineteen couples have entered The Standard 2012 Wedding of the Year and judges Alison Bonjer, Glenda McNeil and Rebecca Hoy said there were a range of elements they looked for when judging the annual competition.
This year's categories include wedding of the year, most traditional gown, most contemporary gown, most unique wedding and people's choice of which a percentage of the public's online votes are counted and combined with the judges' scores.
Prior to the evening event, the judges will score the couple and their wedding using a criteria which includes details about how the couple met, the proposal and elements of their wedding day from the gowns and suits worn to the flowers, cake, ceremony and reception.
The couples must also detail the most memorable part of the day and why their wedding was number one in 50 words or less.
The judges agreed that there needed to be something special that defined a couple's wedding, whether it was a theme for the day, a thoughtful and well planned proposal or other sentimental stories from how they met, proposal or the big day itself.
The 2012 Wedding of the Year will be held in the Carmichael Room at City Memorial Bowls Club on Sunday, July 8 at 6.30pm and includes a parade of the 19 brides wearing their wedding gowns and a fashion parade by south-west wedding service providers.
"We follow the criteria and go through each step. It's a matter of assessing the time and the effort, not necessarily the money, towards what they were trying to achieve at the end of the day," Mrs McNeil said.
The judges said details about the proposal and how creative and clever some of the men were was also something they considered. They said the size of the wedding or other flashy elements did not earn the title of Wedding of the Year, but rather the spirit and stories from the day.
The judges agreed the competition was a great opportunity for the brides to wear their gown again and was a chance for wedding related services to showcase their wares to the public.
"I think it's fantastic," Ms Bonjer said.
"Everyone goes to a lot of effort both financially and emotionally for the day and I think for them to have that opportunity to relive their day is wonderful.
"It means so much to them. You can only ever invite maybe 50 or 80 or 100 guests to your wedding day, but in reality you might have a network of friends and acquaintances that is far bigger than that. This is like a way of showcasing your wedding to them as well, all over again."
The annual Bridal Party Showcase, which exhibits a range of wedding service providers, will be held again on Sunday, July 8 from 10am to 3pm at the Warrnambool racecourse, prior to the Wedding of the Year.
From tomorrow The Standard will profile one Wedding of the Year couple per day. Online voting will open on Friday, June 8 and Wedding of the Year tickets can be purchased from The Standard from Monday, May 21.