Posts Tagged ‘Wedding Tips’

Wedding Tips: Reception Do’s & Dont’s

Aug 25 , 2013

Alyssa Rose Photography
Good morning loves! sooo, creeping in my inbox lately have been a ton of questions in regards to wedding receptions….so in no particular order here are some of my receptions do’s & dont’s:

1) Do as much planning the months prior to the big day. I know this one sounds like a no brainer but your mind would be blown if I told you how many brides leave a lot of shit to the last minute. For example, do Not and I mean do NOT look for a photographer 1 month prior to your wedding. This is a true story yo.

2) Ain’t nobody got time to wait on you haha j/k I know its your big day and a few things can get a little lost in translation but try and refrain from showing up 3 hours late to your own reception. Make sure your ceremony starts on time and that the photographer doesn’t take longer than the cocktail hour to complete your photos. Your reception doors should open up between forty-five minutes and an hour after your cocktail hour begins. If the guests are left waiting much longer than that, they will get restless.

3. Don’t be an entertainment whore and plan too many events during the reception. Most wedding receptions have traditional events that must take place, the entrance, first dance, parent dance, toasts, cake cutting, bouquet and and exit. So it’s not wise to add too many other events that will interrupt dance time. The people want to get their boogie on yo.

4. Make some wickedy wicked music selections and give that information to your band or DJ, but don’t try and program the entire event. A professional entertainer will be able to read the crowd and adjust the music to keep people dancing. If you tie their hands with too many song requests, the energy of the evening may suffer.

5. Light that room up! If you want a great dance party, make sure the lights are dim. Your guests will be more likely to get up and move if the lights are down. Remember, if you are having a videographer, make sure to discuss the lighting with him. If it is too dark in the room, the video quality may suffer.

6. Give those feet a rest would ya! Make sure your feet are comfortable. Every bride wants to have stunning shoes on the wedding day. Usually the most stunning shoes have a three inch heal and straps or a skinny toe. They look great for the ceremony and beautiful in photographs, but they don’t do well on the dance floor. Make sure to bring some flat shoes, sneakers or flip flops to give your feet a break.

7. Do NOT and I mean do NOT act like a baller if you are not a legit baller. Don’t overspend. Nothing is more stressful than watching your beautiful wedding day unfold knowing that you are in debt because of it. Plan carefully and spend wisely, you will be able to enjoy your wedding and honeymoon in peace.

8. Eat, Drink and be Merry! Your guests will take their cues from you. If you are eating, dancing and enjoying yourselves, your guests will too. When I see a packed dance floor, typically the bride and groom are right in the center of the crowd.

Now go get this party started!!!

Photography: Alyssa Rose Photography

Wedding Tips: Girl Time!

Jul 12 , 2013

One of my bff’s is getting married in a couple of months so today we are taking off for the weekend to the beautiful mountains for some much needed girl time to celebrate her bachelorette party! So, I thought what better time to leave you guys some tips on planning this little shindig!

1) Talk to the bride: You may be thinking of getting her wasted at the bar but she may want something a little more low key and quiet. Get together with your bride and find out what she has in mind.

2) Timing: Don’t schedule the party too far in front of the big day, but don’t wait until the last minute, either.

3) Be considerate ya’ll: While it’s customary that a host pays for a bridal shower, the attendees pay for the bachelorette party themselves and the bride doesn’t pay for anything. If you’re organizing, the shindig, make sure attendees know this, and be sensitive to what they can afford in order to avoid embarrassment and hurt feelings. Don’t force anyone to be there, the wedding party is already expending a lot of time and cost to help the bride celebrate, and costs can really add up. Just be a little sensitive when it comes time to this yo.

4) Have some fun: After all the invites have been set and the budget has been planned, it all comes down to one thing…FUN! This is supposed to be a fun time for the bride and her closest gal pals. Don’t make it about unresolved drama and don’t bring up shit that will upset the bride or the guests.

Photography: Austin Warnock
Floral Design: Ingela Floral Design

Wedding Tips: Money in the bank

Jul 1 , 2013

Lately, I have had a few lovely brides tell me they cant attain the look of their dream wedding because they don’t have the money. I hate hearing you babes so sad so I wanted to talk about some ways you could cut back on some costs! Peep this dolls:chriselle-engagement-131
Get your priorities straight
Make a list of the most important things you want for your wedding and have your fiancé do the same. Are you most committed to having gorgeous flowers, inviting 400 people, hosting the wedding at a particular location, or serving filet mignon and lobster? Knowing your priorities before the planning starts will help you decide what to spend money on, and what you don’t mind doing cheaply or doing without.

Cut down that guest list
For some people, it can feel very tempting to invite hundreds of people to the ceremony. Howver, with each addition to your guest list, you’re adding a person that’s of lesser importance to you compared to the people you’ve already invited. Instead of just adding more and more people, consider inviting fewer people and making the event more intimate. Try cutting your list in half and see if you’re happy with it!

Location done right
Have your ceremony and reception in the same location to simplify things and save you money. There will be no need for limos to take you to the second location. Many churches have halls that are equipped to handle wedding receptions at reasonable fees – especially if you are a member.

Screw Saturdays!
Consider having your wedding any day but Saturday. Fridays are also popular wedding days but may cost a lot less than a Saturday event. For even greater savings, choose a weekday evening for your wedding. Schedule the wedding to allow guests time to arrive at the ceremony after the work day has ended. Many guests enjoy weekday weddings as this frees up their weekends for other activities. Choose a date between November and April (between May and October if you live in the southern hemisphere) to avoid higher peak season rates in many areas.

plan plan plan
List everything you can think of and walk through these items step by step. The earlier you get started – and the more things you think about early on – the less “last minute stress” you’ll have and the more time you’ll have to find sales and discounts and other good ideas.

Photo courtesy of Jana Williams

Wedding Tips: Bridesmaid Edition

May 22 , 2013

Okay you gorgeous bridesmaids….I know sometimes it can be hard to dealing with the bride when she is getting closer and closer to her wedding date but you have to understand that she is probably dealing with mounds and mounds of stress….so here are a few things to keep and mind and some tips for being an amazing bridesmaid:

1. Remember that it is not about you. This is your friend’s wedding, not yours. This means that if it makes her happy, you will wear an ugly dress without complaint. You will travel to the middle of nowhere. You will carry luggage and goodie bags and flowers. Whatever the task is, you will do it to ensure that your friend has a special day, regardless of if you would make the same choice as a bride yourself.

2. Be honest and supportive at the same time. Your bride will be making dozens of decisions while planning her wedding, from color scheme to catering options to The Dress. Sometimes it’s appropriate for you to share your honest feedback, and sometimes it’s better to just support your friend in the decision she’s made. If she’s about to purchase an awful and gaudy wedding gown, perhaps step in and say you’d like to see her in something more flattering. But if she’s stressing about her catering choice? Reassure her that it was a great decision and everything will turn out wonderfully. No need to add to that stress!

3. Come prepared! You are going to spend the entire day getting ready with the bride, so make sure you’re prepared with all the necessities. Make up touch ups, concealer, water bottles, etc. You’re also going to be the person that guests come to when they need to know information so that they don’t disrupt the bride, so make sure you know the times and locations that people need to be places.

4. Stay sober. Well, maybe not 100% sober, but when the reception is in full swing and the bride and groom are inseparable, you should be fully functional and able to step in to help with different things – the catering clean-up, the questions the DJ might have, assisting the guests with getting back to their hotel. Taking on this responsibility will ease the bride’s worry and allow her to enjoy the last of the day without any incidents.

5. Play nice. You might not know all of the other bridesmaids and you might not like all of them, but get over it. There’s nothing worse than causing tension for the bride because you and her other friends can’t get along for 8 hours.

Just remember, weddings can bring the crazy out of anyone so don’t let that ruin a lifetime of friendship. Just be calm and understand that 99% of the time you will have your girlfriend back to normal once the cray cray aspect of the wedding is done with!

Photography: David Jenkins

Wedding Tips: Invitation Etiquette Ya’ll

Mar 17 , 2013

Happiest of Mondays you gorgeous babes! Okay, so it has come to my attention that a few of you are really getting stressed out with your wedding invites and I never realized how much drama wedding invites caused ya’ll…Why the drama dolls? Yes, there are a few rules of etiquette to stand by but that’s about it….No biggie babes :) Just follow a few of these rules and you will be just fine! Or you could be a total bad ass and just eff it…but in case you aren’t that rebellious here are some of the top tips to follow from The Knot:

Q. When should we send out our wedding invitations?
A. Traditionally, invitations go out six to eight weeks before the wedding — that gives guests plenty of time to clear their schedules and make travel arrangements if they don’t live in town. If it’s a destination wedding, give guests more time and send them out three months ahead of time. Most couples also send out save-the-date cards. They go out at six to eight months.

Q. When should we make the deadline for RSVPs?
A. Make your RSVP date two to three weeks before your wedding date – this will allow enough time for you to get a final head count to the caterer (one week before) and to finalize your seating chart. If some guests still haven’t responded by your deadline, give them a quick call and ask for their RSVPs (still via mail) so you have all their information.

Q. Where do we include information about our wedding website?
A. Your wedding website should be included on your save-the-date. A simple “,” is all you really need. If you’d like (or if you don’t have save-the-dates), you can include the web address in the formal invitations with an insert – a small card that informs guests they can find more details online.

Q. Can we include our registry info on our invitations or save-the-dates?
A. In a word, no. Including registry info on the wedding invitations or save-the-dates is still considered impolite because it can come off as though you’re asking for gifts. Tell your wedding party, parents and close friends where you are registered, and let them fill guests in. Plus, most guests will know that all that extra information (that they didn’t find on the invitation) is on your wedding website.

Q. We’re having an adults-only wedding (no kids). How can we make sure this is clear to our guests?
A. Address your invitations correctly – to each guest by name, not “and guest” – and guests should understand that the invite is meant for only those mentioned. If you find that some reply with their children’s names added, give them a call and explain that you’re having an adults-only wedding and that you hope they can still attend. If there are a lot of kids in your family, you may want to consider hiring or arranging for a babysitter. It’s definitely not required, but it’s a nice gesture. Just be sure to include this information on the wedding website.

Q. How do we let guests know our dress code?
A. The easiest way to get your point across is to include a dress code in the lower right-hand corner of the invite or on a reception card; “black-tie,” “cocktail attire” or “casual attire” are all acceptable. Your invitation design will also clue guests in. An ultra-formal, traditional invite with letterpress and calligraphy will give guests a hint to the formal nature of the event, whereas a square invite with a playful font and bright colors would fit a much more casual style. Another way is to direct guests to your wedding website,where you can go into more detail about the weekend events and dress code in a more informal forum.

Q. Do we have to invite every guest with a date or a “plus-one”?
A. No, you don’t have to. If a guest isn’t married or in a serious relationship, it’s perfectly acceptable to invite them solo. Most guests will understand that without “and Guest” or another name on the invitation means they aren’t invited with a plus-one. While it’s always nice to invite everyone with a guest, if you’re having a small wedding, your family and friends should understand your reasoning. What to do if a guest RSVPs for two? Call them up and explain that you’re having an intimate wedding and, unfortunately, you were not able to invite everyone with a guest. But if you realize that nearly everyone will be coupled up, extend a plus-one invitation to your few single friends and family.

Q. Where do you put the return address on wedding invitations?
A. The return address usually goes on the back flap of the envelope. Also, the return address used should be that of the person(s) whom you’ve designated to receive response cards – be it your parents or you (traditionally, whoever is hosting the wedding handles response cards). Don’t forget that the RSVP envelope should also be printed with this address (and should include postage).

Q. If our wedding reception is for immediate family only, is it okay to invite people to the ceremony only?
A. In a word, no. Everyone who attends the ceremony (or bridal shower, engagement party or wedding reception) should be invited to the wedding – that means the ceremony and the reception. In your case, by inviting guests to one and not the other, you’re basically saying you want them there for the actual ceremony but you either don’t want to pay for their plate at your party or don’t care enough to have them there to actually celebrate your newly-married status.

Q. I invited my friend and her boyfriend (by name on the invite) to the wedding, but they recently broke up. Now she wants to bring a friend I don’t like – can I tell her no?
A. Because you worded the invitation correctly by having her boyfriend’s name on the envelope (rather than “and guest”), you have every right to say no. As a rule, invitations are nontransferable when people are invited by name. Try explaining that you’re not friendly with her proposed guest and you’d prefer that the wedding be limited to very good friends and family. If you invited all of your single friends sans dates, let her know she won’t be the only one coming solo (in case that’s her worry).

Photography: Tegan Martin-Drysdale
Styling & Design: Birds & Honey

Finding the perfect Venue

Oct 22 , 2012

So, you’ve just got engaged and you are absolutely beaming with happiness. Then it hits you, “OMG, I need a venue and I need it now!” I know it can be very tempting to book the first thing that is available but before you start to panic try and keep a few of these tips in mind when choosing your wedding venue:

1) Budget Budget Budget – You and your hunny need to decide on a budget and stick with it! Working out a budget early on will help you to shortlist potential wedding venues.  Food and alcohol normally take up quite a large chunk of your budget so remember to include it in your calculations dolls!

2) No church in the wild (sorry I was trying to be clever with a Jay Z reference)  –  Deciding what type of ceremony you would like will highlight the area in which you should look for a wedding venue as your wedding reception venue should ideally be within a 20 – 25 minute radius of the church or civil ceremony location.

3) Talk and talk and then talk some more – COMMUNICATE PEOPLE!  Maybe you want something outdoor in the summertime and maybe he wants it at his grandmas barn…either way speak with one another and decide whats best for both of you! it is key to chat with your other half about the sort of wedding you would like and be prepared to compromise if you have different ideas. This could help avoid disagreements later! 

4) For the love of guests – Make sure to think about all the extra costs that may be involved for some of your guests. If you want to avoid incurring expensive taxi charges and hotel bills for them or coach costs for you, look for a wedding venue near to where the majority of your guests live. Or if you have friends or family coming far away then see if the hotel can give a special rate for your lovely guests.

5) How many peeps? – Make sure that you and your hunny have a rough idea of guest numbers before you start looking for a wedding venue or be prepared to alter your guest count.  This should avoid the disappointment of visiting a beautiful wedding venue only to find out it is too big/small for your wedding.

6) The Date – If you and your hunny decided on a date for your wedding and it’s set in stone, then check the availability of that date before you visit.  If you’re flexible about the day of the week, month, season, or even the year of your wedding you’ll have a much wider choice of venues.