Archive for the ‘Planning’ Category
by Brogan Lozano
Here at the Wedding Guide, we know how important finding the right photographer for your big day is, and we want to do everything in our power to not only help you locate the right person for the job, but also help everything run a little smoother on your wedding day. Here are a few tips that we have gathered to help you out:
1. First things first: Choose a style.
Traditional — These are the pictures you are used to seeing—posed and consisting of the bridal party and immediate family members of the bride and groom.
Documentary — You know these photos as “action shots.” They tell the story of the day and capture priceless moments.
Illustrative — These are the more “artistic” photographs. They can, but not in all cases, deal with unconventional settings, lighting, and poses and may be enhanced in some way in the editing process depending on the photographer.
Whatever your style is, make sure you find a photographer that matches yours. If you want a combination of any or all the styles, make sure you talk to the photographer about it and see if they can oblige. Don’t settle, you know what you want, so find someone who can deliver.
2. Hire someone you trust completely.
No brainer, right? Some brides sign contracts before they even know whom they are getting involved with and end up with photos they are less than pleased with. Don’t make the same mistake that many unfortunate brides have made before. Communication is key. Before signing a contract and handing over a check, request examples of their work, ask to see any literature they may have, look at their website, ask about a second shooter, and review the contract more than once so you know exactly what you are getting. Once you and your photographer have agreed to all the terms and conditions and have formed a game plan, let them do their job. There’s no need to stress or micromanage if you have communicated exactly what you want.
3. Schedule ample time for the wedding formal portraits.
Weddings will always run late, whether it’s by five minutes or by five hours, plan accordingly. An hour to capture all the posed family and bridal party pictures is usually not enough time. To lessen the stress and increase efficiency during this process, come up with a shot list with your photographer prior to your wedding day. Having your coordinator or simply a family member (not in the bridal party) orchestrate the photo session is not a bad idea either. It leaves you merely having to say, “Cheese!” Also, try communicating to your bridal party exactly what is going to happen and what you would like from them prior to the event. Keeping everyone informed will keep them from bursting your bubble.
4. Weather: Hope for the best; plan for the worst.
Although the professionals you’ve hired should have a plan B come rain or shine, it doesn’t hurt for you to have one of your own. After all, only you know locations that are important to you and your groom that you wouldn’t mind having as your backdrop for those special photos.
Remember ladies, brides look their best when they aren’t stressed. Tension is the new black when you are supposed to be a vision in white. If you hired someone you trust and took every measure to communicate what you want, then don’t sweat it. Being the stunning woman that you are is your only job, so let your inner-model thrive! The camera loves you darling!
Tags: alternative photography, photography tips, wedding photography
Posted in Advice, Images, Photography, Planning | 1 Comment »
Today’s blog comes from wedding photographer and self-proclaimed “go-to bridesmaid” Cari Wible of Cari Wible Photography.
As someone who has participated in a lot of weddings, not just as a photographer but also as a bridesmaid, maid of honor and general do it all girl, I’ve seen the good, bad and the UGLY of the relationships between the bride and bridal party. Here are a few first hand lessons for navigating those relationships.
Photo by Cari Wible Photography
#1 Choosing your Girls
When we get ready to celebrate this day the tendency is to ask anyone and everyone to be a bridesmaid. Just remember with more girls, come more personalities and opinions. You should also talk to you groom about how many guys he wants to include. Often your groom has a smaller number of guys in mind. Blood is thicker than water, and when it comes to your bridal party, sisters and sister-in-laws are an important bridesmaid to consider. Even though your relationship might not be super close at the moment, 30 years from now when you remember this day you’ll most definitely wish your sister was there with you. Bringing in your grooms sister is also important to show him and his family that you accept them as your own. Overall consider your long term dynamic with the ladies, who is going to truly be a calming force during this stressful time, and who truly represents you and your groom.
Photo by Cari Wible Photography
#2 Flexible Planning
Many of us start planning this day when we are little girls, so by the time he proposes we have very specific ideas in mind. When planning it’s important to be flexible too. Bring in general ideas or even create a Pinterest board of ideas and trends you’d like to incorporate. Now take a breath and trust your vendors and bridesmaids. Most vendors want to please you. I know that might shock a few of you but they really do. Not only are you paying them, but you are a review that could make or break their business and a potential resource for referrals. Ask them, “Can you do this” or “Do you have an idea similar?” Wedding vendors are typically a very dedicated and talented group of people, who love what they do, so if you do your do diligence finding the good ones…TRUST THEM! And trust your GIRLS. Your bridesmaids want the best for you and are ready to do whatever you need. Remember though, while this event probably absorbs your every waking moment…they do have lives too. Communicate your needs and the timing you need them in and then back off. Don’t micromanage them, they are your friends and family, not your employees.
Photo by Cari Wible Photography
#3 Being a Good Bridesmaid
Here is the sticky part. Every bride has different expectations and needs of her girls. When you accept the job, you accept a lot of crazy. Let me say this again, a lot of CRAZY! As I stated before every girl dreams of this day. Your job as a bridesmaid means doing everything within your own sanity to make it happen. That means wearing that color you think is atrocious, tying hundreds of ribbons to DIY-ed invitations and spending every free Saturday helping her plan. Now this doesn’t mean you are suppose to be her punching bag, but if she needs you, you need to be there when possible. The wedding day is the most important example of this. Even if you are bored out of your mind watching other people’s hair get curled, stay by her side. Also don’t take it so personal. Very little of what goes on that day is about you. It’s humbling to recognize that fact, but it will go a long way for helping her stress level. Remember the bride wants you there because you are important to her, so make her important to you.
Photo by Cari Wible Photography
#4 Being Friends AFTER the Wedding
Make an effort before the big day to talk about non wedding stuff. It will be VERY difficult. But after the big day life will have moved on and it’s important to have a relationship based on more than just wedding chaos. Also don’t be afraid to take a little break after the wedding. You and your girls have officially been to war and survived, and the emotions of that day need to be left there. Take a moment to breathe, get back to normal and move on as friends.
Photo by Cari Wible Photography
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Cooler weather makes us think of cooler colors. And you might possibly gravitate to shades of blue, silver, and white, however, what about the cool crisp color of seafoam green? We think this is a lovely color that could be used in winter or spring weddings. It makes us think of lime sherbet ice cream, sea glass, peppermint patties, mint chocolate chip ice cream…wait, I think I’m hungry now too.
Take a look at these inspiring boards we found in this favorite shade. See what it inspires in you.
What girl wouldn’t like to receive this gorgeous ring attached with a proposal? We also love the train that goes on for days on this gown. We think of waterfalls and the wind with this cascading of fabric.
We think the short dress on this board is a great look for a bridesmaid. Add the vintage necklace in the signature color, and you’ve definitely got a look going. We also love the patterned wallpaper. How great of an idea would it be to use a similar pattern for your own “photo booth” at your wedding?
On this board, we like the introduction of a second color to push a feeling for the day. This coral or peachy color gives just the right balance and contrast for a more spring vibe. We love the feather boutineer, and how organic it looks.
If you have family members who were around in the 50s, they could probably tell you that just about every appliance, car and type of tile came in a seafoam color option. So it is natural to attach a vintage theme with this color. We think it works well on so many levels.
This table decor shows us that you don’t have to drown your wedding decor in a single color. Careful selection of spot colors can just add that much needed little “pop” of something different for visual interest.
And finally, Elie Saab, you have done it again. For that daring girl who wants a little something different, we love these gowns in this beautiful shade. They just seem a little more interesting and romantic.
For help with pulling your wedding day look and decor together, make sure you visit our wedding professional at www.austinweddings.com. Tell us what colors you have selected for your wedding. We would love to know your inspiration.
Posted in Details, Inspiration, Planning | 1 Comment »
Are you in the stage of your wedding planning where you are looking for a venue? This can be a daunting task indeed, but, with the right questions in hand, you can be confident that you are going to get the venue of your dreams.
From our friend, Chandra at Oh Lovely Day blog, she has composed a list of fail safe items that we would like to share with our community.
Rancho La Mission venue
Finding your wedding venue can be one of the most important, and hardest, parts of planning. So today I’m going to give you some tips to finding your venue. My first two quick pieces of advice: there is no perfect venue and being open to any date will help you have more options.
Some questions you need to ask yourself when looking for a venue:
1. Do you want to get married in a church or religious location? (because this automatically means to need two locations)
2. Do you want your ceremony and reception to be in one location? (this is often more affordable and convenient)
3. How many guests will you be having?
4. What time of year will you be getting married?
5. What geographical location will you be getting married?
Once you have decided as a couple that you want a summer wedding, or an outdoor wedding, or a church wedding, or a destination wedding, you have a better idea of how to narrow down your venue search.
Granberry Hills venue
Once you know what you’re looking for, you need to find some locations to visit. Some great resources can be:
1. Ask married friends who have gotten married in the same place. They may have done a venue search and can recommend some places or tell you places to avoid.
2. Look online. You can go a Google search for your area, look on sites like The Knot or Wedding Wire, and check out vendor guides on wedding blogs for ideas.
3. If you’re in a larger area buy a wedding magazine specific to that area, like The Wedding Guide, which has ads and listings for local venues.
Venues at Pat O’Brien’s
Once you find a few venues you want to visit, here are some questions that you might not think of that are VERY important to ask:
1. Do you have a cut off time or a time limit? Lots of places make you cut off the music by 10 pm or give you 4 hours for your reception, and if you want to party to the wee hours this is important to you.
2. Do you cater on site, have rentals, etc. or do we have to bring everything on site ourselves?
3. What is the parking like for your guests?
4. What are the bathrooms like for your guests? (This is important! You don’t want porto-potties for your guests right?)
5. Can I bring my own alcohol on site? (This is a gem and can save you a lot of money.)
6. Where will the guests eat, dance, have cocktail hour, sit for the reception (if applicable)? You want to be sure there is room for the number of guests you have in mind at each location.
7. Can we use any vendors we want? Do you have any vendor requirements or restrictions?
8. What are the extra fees or hidden costs? Sometimes ceremonies cost extra. There is a fee if you go over a certain number of people.
9. Do you have a minimum cost that we must meet? Many venues do, and while they are usually easy to meet, if the minimum is $20,000 and that is more than your budget, that is not the venue for you.
10. What other restrictions do you have, if any? Some of these could be a noise restriction (could prevent you from having the band or DJ you want), decoration restrictions, etc.
These ten questions will help you narrow down your venue choices to find the right one for you. I hope these tips will help you to find your wedding venue. And remember, no venue is perfect. But, there is one out there that will feel right for you. You’ll find it, I promise.
Tags: Venues, wedding venues
Posted in Planning, Reception, Venue | No Comments »
Sometimes some of the details get overlooked in the months and months of planning for your wedding. Frequently items like the serving knives, decorations for the get-away car, and guestbooks get relegated to, “…can you go pick up something real quick?,” the night before. And heaven forbid you or a loved one is forced to use their own personal judgment in a purchase the day of.
So we are addressing the often forgotten guestbook. We’ve all been to hundreds of weddings and seen the carefully opened and unwritten pages of a standard guestbook with a plumed pen of some sort. And without direction, we navigate towards the ever-building line to scrawl our John Hancock on pages that will probably never get seen again.
Sadly, that guestbook that was so important to purchase in your matching colors and that you swore you were going to use to start your new family’s Christmas card list, gets tucked away in a box along with remnants of your bouquet and unity candle items. It’s ok, it happens. But what if there was an alternative? Well, of course there is. Thanks to social media, brides and all sorts of wedding consultants and designers are more than happy to share their creativeness when it comes to an alternative to just about anything wedding related.
So take a look at some of the very hip, cool, and practical (in most cases) alternatives to a traditional looking book.
If you’ve never seen this before, guests are asked to create a thumbprint leaf to add to the couple’s wedding tree. Then the couple adds their thumbprints on the bottom and the tree can later be framed and placed in the couple’s home.
This guestbook has a unique “station” set up with a vignette quality adorned with props. Guests are asked to type or hand write notes to the bride and groom along with their signatures. Then the guests pin them up adding to the whimsy of the night. Other new guests can read the notes and add fun, silly and heartfelt sentiments.
Similar to the one before, notes are generated by guests on pre-cut squares of fabric and pinned to a line, board or frame. After the wedding, the squares are all sewn together and a lovely quilt is made. The quilt can either be used in the traditional sense or can be hung as a unique and personal tapestry on a wall in the new couple’s home.
This creative spin on the guestbook takes a piece of plywood, framed and painted with chalkboard paint. Guests are provided with a Polaroid camera and chalk and given free reign. After the wedding, a sealant can be applied to preserve the notes in chalk and hung somewhere special in the home.
This simple idea takes smooth stones, probably purchased at a landscaping store or nursery and various permanent markers to generate individual wishes of congratulations and then placed in a jar of some sort. Once the day has passed, the stones can be placed around the new couple’s home. The idea is to surround the couple’s new home with the love from everyone who loves them.
The final idea today can be handled one of two ways. 1. Couple provides blank corks for the guests to sign at the beginning of the evening, 2. Corks are provided by the caterer/bar staff at the end of the evening from the bottles of wine imbibed during the wedding. Before the guests leave, they are given a cork to sign.
Once the signed corks have been collected, various types of cork boards can be fashioned or ornamental letters in the couple’s initials can be created and hung either in the kitchen, over the mantle or the bar area of the home.
For more wedding resources and ideas, make sure to visit our website www.austinweddings.com.
Posted in Decor, Details, Event Ideas, Planning | No Comments »
Today’s blog submission comes from the wedding professionals at What’s the Event?
These days brides feel they can plan their wedding on their own. They see it as a money saver. And a common thought is that hiring a wedding planner will just add to the budget. But when an issue occurs with a vendor or when the bakery can’t find your reception location or the DJ plans to use an ipod, a wedding planner will be able to pick out the professionals from the amateurs.
Here are a few top reasons why you should consider hiring a planner:
1. A planner can help you mediate. She/he can act as a negotiator when any conflicts arise-between you and your vendors and possibly between family members. Really there is nothing worse than fighting with the very people who are supposed to help your wedding be beautiful and memorable.
2. A planner can help you organize. Your planner can procure permits and facility paperwork, especially useful if your wedding is out of your local area. She/he can see where you might be charged additionally for parking, security or time overages and assist in budgeting these items in and keeping things on time to prevent additional fees.
3. A planner can supervise your wedding . This means she/he is overseeing all the vendor setups on the day of the wedding. Making sure everything runs smoothly. There is nothing worse than you getting your makeup and hair done and directing the florist how you want the flowers set up or where the DJ or band needs to hook up for sound. This is a huge reason alone to hire a planner.
4. A planner can help you orchestrate your wedding. The planner typically leads, or “conducts” everyone through the wedding procession, telling the band when to play, having signaled the DJ when you’re making your grand entrance, and when the bridesmaids need to start their walk down the aisle. This is no job for a cousin, auntie or friend. It is really a lot of running around which is why planners usually do not wear high heels because it is more like a track and field event.
5. A planner can help inspire you. She/he can help suggest colors, themes, menu ideas, and unique favors, great “out of the box” fun ideas. Use his/her experience , they have definitely been to many more weddings than most and have seen what works and what doesn’t. She/he has also seen what everyone does and doesn’t do, so those “out of the box” ideas you’re thinking of, they can see how and if they will really work.
So a planner is so much more of a partner than just a person who helps you get vendors. They are the Thelma to your Louise, the ideal bad cop to your good cop and very plainly, provide the perfect partner in crime.
consultants, planners, wedding consultants, wedding planners
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Chances are, that with the summer heat comes thoughts of ways to stay cool. A frosty beverage or two cannot be too far off your radar, and with the progression wedding planning, eventually you will start to discuss reception hour cocktails. Lovely chilled fruity colored quenching cocktails are a perfect way to keep your guests not rueing the day you decided to have a summer wedding outdoors in the unforgiving Texas heat.
Recently, some Texas concoctions were featured in an article and we picked out a few of our favorites to highlight as possible wedding signature drinks for your big day. We were thrilled to see that either Texas liquors or Texas eateries and bars were the focus of these refreshing libations.
(Enchanted Rock Vodka)
1 ½ ounces Enchanted Rock Vodka
½ ounce St. Germain
½ ounce local honey syrup*
½ ounce lime juice
1 mint leaf
Combine ingredients, shake over ice, and strain into martini glass. Garnish with mint leaf.
*Create local honey syrup by boiling equal parts local honey and water. Bring to boil and let cool.
(Stephany Gordon, SoHo in San Antonio)
6 slices fresh strawberries
juice from 1 lemon
2 teaspoons simple syrup or sugar water
1 ounce Ciroc Berry Vodka
1 ounce Kettle 1 Citron Vodka
1 cup ice
Muddle (smash) strawberries in bar shaker. Add remaining ingredients, and shake vigorously. Pour into Collins or pint glass and top with equal parts club and lemon-lime sodas. You can substitute any berry or citrus vodka for this recipe. Quadruple the recipe and mix in a pitcher for a great summer party drink.
(Jeret Peña, Esquire Tavern in San Antonio)
1 ½ ounces gin
½ ounce lemon juice
½ ounce simple syrup
3 cucumber slices
5 mint leaves
Add all ingredients except ginger beer into a shaking tin and muddle mint and cucumber. Add ice and shake. Pour contents into a Collins glass filled with ice. Top with cracked black pepper and add ginger beer. Top with additional cracked pepper and garnish with a cucumber slice and mint sprig.
(Ocho lounge in San Antonio)
2 ounces Bacardi 1909
½ ounce lime juice
½ ounce grapefruit juice
½ ounce Luxardo Maraschino
½ ounce simple syrup
1 slice grapefruit
Combine ingredients, and shake. Pour
into glass and garnish with grapefruit slice.
(Azuca restaurant in San Antonio)
2 ounces Bacardi limon rum
1 ounce granulated sugar
10 sprigs fresh mint
1 lime, quartered
4 ounces club soda
¼ mango, peeled and cut in pieces
Put sugar, lime pieces, mint sprigs and 1 ounce of club soda into tall Collins glass. Gently muddle the content until you can smell the mint. Add mango and muddle only to break the pieces. Pour in the Bacardi limon rum, fill with ice cubes and top with club soda. Shake well with a martini shaker. Transfer to a glass, and garnish with a slice of fresh mango.
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One Maid of Honor duty that ends up being a task favorite for most girlfriends is building the wedding day survival kit. Bridesmaids (or one amazing Maid of Honor) stockpile items for weeks, and by the time the big day has arrived, the bride and her crew are ready for any emergency.
You can buy a pre-made survival kit from many novelty companies and websites, but if you’re more of a DIY type of girl, here’s a comprehensive list of everything you’ll need to be as prepared as a boy scout (or girl scout)for the big day:
- Static Guard
- Febreeze (see if you can find the mini bottle)
- Tide Pen
- Double sided tape (We like Hollywood Fashion Tape in various sizes)
- White chalk (to disguise any stains on the gown)
- Packing tape (a bride recommended this and she’s right, it does everything from repairing headpieces and hems to removing lint)
- Sewing kit (w/scissors)
- Safety pins
- Makeup for touchups
- Blotting papers
- Revlon Makeup Eraser pen
- Travel toothbrush and toothpaste
- Clear nail polish
- Super glue
- Nail file
- Contact solution (if needed)
- Various foot cushions (We like the Blissful Bridal set from Foot Petals)
- Band-Aid Blister Blocks
And of course, feel free to get creative with the container you put all these items in. It could be anything from a classic tackle box contraption to a very chic bag al la Coach or Chanel. Now that truly says love from your “ladies in waiting.” Just make sure to reciprocate with an equally chic thank you gift for all their hard work.Tags: bridal emergency, emergency kit, maid of honor duty, survival, survival kit
Posted in Accessories, Advice, Details, General info., Planning | 1 Comment »
By Evan Kanarakis & Veronica Lozano
Okay brides, today’s blog is for your future groom, so kindly either forward it to his phone or email, or print it out for him and subtly place it in an inconspicuous location for him to find.
We have all heard that, for the most part, weddings are all about what the bride wants. But we also don’t want to forget the groom, it is his day too after all. And believe it or not, some groom’s do want to help and have some input on some things. And if you want to score some major points with your beloved, taking care of a few things could be the difference between a calm, relaxed bride and one who is so stressed that she starts to take it out on you.
Be proactive with your bride. Use this as a first opportunity to preemptively ask your bride what she would like you to help with for your big day. Minimally, if you feel comfortable, tell her you will take care of the items that follow.
Suit Fittings. Take charge of the groomsmen’s suit fittings. It can be as easy as sending out an email to all your chosen guys, and just following up with the suit/tuxedo shop. Make sure to find out all the correct deadlines.
Groomsmen’s gift. Buy each of them a thank you present ahead of time. Start thinking ahead of time by looking at online sites like redenvelope.com. Something engraved with their initials or name is always a classy option, and can fit a variety of budgets.
Give guidance on the bachelor party. While the planning of the bachelor party is left in the hands of the best man, it’s important that a groom provide some degree of guidance on what he would — or would not — like to do. Make sure it’s going to be a day you’ll enjoy. There’s no fun in being compelled to take part in something you’re uncomfortable with or that would over-stretch the budgets of the other friends you’d like to attend.
the good wishes coming from friends and family, there’s nothing wrong with allowing some time prior to the service to collect yourself. Ask your best man to be in charge of corralling you away from guests when it’s time to get ready. A calming, celebratory drink with your groomsmen prior to the wedding is a great idea — just don’t over imbibe.
Choose your groom’s cake. This is one of the main times you get to express your sole opinion and add your personality to the wedding. Choose a cake that says something personal about you.
Prepare the suite. Finally, make advance arrangements for your honeymoon suite. Call the hotel in advance and arrange for champagne or flowers to be in the room upon your arrival. It will make for an especially sweet gesture at the end of a long, memorable day.
Plan the honeymoon. One great project for a groom is to plan the honeymoon. You obviously know enough about each other’s interests (and your budget) to choose a place where you’ll both be happy. Keep in mind that the destination is less important than the fact that the honeymoon will represent a chance to celebrate — and unwind — after the wedding. Instead of rushing off the night of or day after the wedding, consider leaving two or three after days later. It’ll save you from feeling rushed, and you’ll be able to see off guests with plenty of time.Tags: decisions, groom, helping, planning
Posted in Advice, Groom, Honeymoon, Planning | No Comments »
By Shannon McCarthy & Veronica Lozano
One perk of planning your wedding is that you get to unleash the creative person in you and channel your own version of Martha Stewart, Colin Cowie and David Tutera. What is usually contained to hostessing duties on a much smaller scale will not compare to what could possibly be the biggest party you ever get the pleasure of coordinating. Yes…I said “the pleasure” of doing. After all, it is a party. And if you enjoy throwing parties on a smaller scale, just think of the possibilities…and all the possible themes you could create. The mind and imagination abound.
Luckily, spring is the perfect season to try some of the most whimsical trends because of the best selection of blooming flowers, and moderately temperate weather. From the simplest nuptial setup to the splashiest celeb celebrations, most wedding ceremonies have a theme or color scheme that unites decor, table settings, even floral styles.
Spring weddings are usually bursting with the bounty of the season, and this year is no different: Seasonal flowers like cabbage roses, peonies, tulips, dahlias and daisies form soft bouquets for both bride and surroundings. (The newest tip is to use faux flowers for your centerpieces, garlands and pomander balls.) Since it’s spring, invitations, table cards and napkins are festooned with foliage, flowers, butterflies and other signs of the season.
As for the “in” colors, they’re gorgeous. Pantone’s top color pick, Tangerine Tango, is a hot citrus orange, and David’s Bridal also taps begonia pink, freesia purple, apple red, coral and ocean blue as the wedding hues for spring. Wedding planners report the most popular overall themes are ranch (a.k.a. rustic), vintage and nautical, with fave venues being vineyards, gardens and farms.color trends, spring, themed weddings, themes, trends
Posted in Decor, Event Ideas, Favors, Flowers, Inspiration, Planning, Wedding Design | No Comments »