Wedding Ideas – What’s New, Fun, and Gaining Popularity?

After seeing more “what’s the latest trend” articles, I wanted to see what is new and popular in our area (Dayton, Ohio). And where best to find this out, but to go right to the source.

Thanks to some of our local wedding pros, here’s what’s new in their areas of expertise.

Textured Wedding Cakes

Textured wedding cakes are still quite popular, from structured art deco-ish designs to an icing with a rough finish.

Textured Wedding Cake

Bobbi and Brittany with ele Cake Co. tells us that one of the more unexpected, yet popular wedding cake designs (and a unique texture) is their Geode Wedding Cake.

Geode Wedding Cake

Elegant. Stunning. Simple. And totally gorgeous!

Geode wedding cakes look like the real thing, but are completely edible, made from rock candy and granulated sugar.

Slow-Motion Video Booths

Photo booths combine a fun activity with a nice take-home for wedding guests.

So, what’s better than a photo booth? A 240 frame per second HD Slow-Motion Video Booth, of course!

Mark’s Camera Bag’s Slo-Mo Video Booths are a big hit , with guests showing their best dance moves, tossing confetti, making outrageous faces, and overall, having an awesome fun time. A 40” monitor that sits outside the booth allows all of your guests to enjoy the live action.

Check it out here –

Yes, guests get a ‘take-home,’ receiving a download of their slow-mo session. And the happy couple get a final edited production of all sessions with special edits and music on DVD.

Thematic Elements in Unexpected Places

Themed weddings are still popular, with the theme commonly being expressed in the couples’ choice of color pallette, centerpieces, and menu choices.

But what about your ceremony?

Rev. Cindy Lee Carver embraces different themes by donning coordinating attire – including Cosplay, Halloween, Steampunk, and recently Gandalf from Lord of the Rings.

Steampunk
Gandalf

Besides the off-beat and themed weddings, she also specializes in officiating traditional, inter-faith, humanistic, alternative, non-traditional, and LGBTQ weddings.

Up In Lights

Sure, you can put your initials on top of your cake, and have your monogram projected on your dance floor or printed on your programs.

Why not put your initials up in lights – classic theater marquee letter lights?

Initials
L-O-V-E

Event Lites specializes in these unique, four feet tall décor pieces – including numbers, letters, and some symbols.

Light up your night with your initials. Spell out Mr. & Mrs., Love, or even your names.

The possibilities are endless.

Perfect for helping you build the right environment and decor for your event. Use them for:

• A modern ceremony backdrop
• A fun, diy photo booth backdrop
• A cool prop for your engagement photos
• Reception décor

Looking for fun ideas for your wedding? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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5 Quotes about Love and Marriage

Love Marriage Romance Hearts
Romantic Red Hearts

Although much has been said on the topics of love and marriage, sometimes nothing sums it up so succinctly than a good quote.

Short, sweet, and to the point, here are five lovely quotes that you can use on your wedding invitations or ceremony programs, include in readings, signage at your reception, or just as inspiration.

Love with Red Heart
Love with Red Heart

1. “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” ~ Lao Tze

2. “Happy is the man who finds a true friend, and far happier is he who finds that true friend in his wife.” ~ Franz Schubert

3. “A good marriage is one which allows for change and growth in individuals and in the way they express their love.” ~ Pearl S. Buck

4. “Men always want to be a woman’s first love and women want to be a man’s last romance.” ~ Oscar Wilde

5. “A successful marriage is an edifice that must be built every day.” ~ Andre Maurois

Heart with Arrow
Hearts with Arrow

Be sure to share with us in the comments below other quotes on love and marriage that you particularly love.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Need inspiration or ideas for your wedding? Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

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Tips for Crafting Your Perfect Wedding Reception Playlist

musical notes
Without question, you’re going to have music at your wedding reception. But picking out this music may be one of the most difficult things you’ll do. With the hundreds of thousands of songs out there, yeah, it can definitely be daunting.

You’ll want songs that you and your fiancé like (it is YOUR wedding, after all). But what about your guests?

Brian Harris, DJ and MC with Brian Harris Entertainment says, “When choosing songs that you want to dance to, think about the guests that you have invited. Try to choose songs that fit their taste in music as well as your own. Typically a wide range from oldies to hip hop will satisfy everybody’s love of music.”

Include a variety of songs (and styles) that will

• please a diverse group of people (from grandma and other elderly guests, to 10 year olds)

and

• keep people on the dance floor, (while making guests feel like they’re at your wedding reception and not out clubbing)

Where to start?

• What songs and music genres do you and your fiancé like (and don’t like)?

• What is the energy level that you want for your reception? Do you want high energy, or more low key?

• Are your guests a “dancing crowd” or do they prefer to sit back, listen to the music, and visit with each other?

Need inspiration?

Sometimes you need more inspiration than just flipping through your CD collection.Big stack of music CDs
DJ Intelligence has compiled multiple music lists based on the most requested songs across the country, including the “Top 200 Most Requested Songs,” the “Top 100 Most Requested DO NOT PLAY Songs,” and the “Top 50 Most Requested First Dances” to help you determine what you want to hear (and don’t want to hear) at your wedding.

So what’s popular in our neck of the woods (Dayton, Ohio)?

Brian Harris also shared the Top 5 Requested Wedding Reception Songs he’s been seeing:

1) Bruno Mars – “24K Magic”

2) Justin Timberlake – “Can’t Stop This Feeling”
3) Journey – “Don’t Stop Believing”
4) V.I.C. – “Wobble”
5) Silento – “Watch Me”

and the

Top 5 Do Not Play Wedding Reception Songs are:

1) Chicken Dance
2) Hokey Pokey
3) Village People – “YMCA”
4) Rednex – “Cotton Eyed Joe”
5) Los Del Rio – “Macarena”

Once you’ve selected songs for your reception, be sure to give your DJ room to go “off script.” Sometimes the songs you’ve picked out (even if they are great songs) just don’t keep guests on the dance floor. A professional DJ knows how to read the crowd and play the music that will have the effect you want.

Brian says, “The less that the DJ’s hands are tied the more fun he/she can make the mix of music throughout the open dancing portion of the evening and keep your guests there even later into the night, which is probably what you really want, right!? :)”

Song titles that he recommends for a great reception include:

1) Bruno Mars – “24K Magic”
2) Justin Timberlake – “Can’t Stop This Feeling”


3) Bruno Mars – ” Uptown Funk”
4) KC & the Sunshine Band – ” Boogie Shoes”


5) Usher – “Yeah”

The 2 biggest mistakes couples make when picking out their reception music

1) Choosing way too many songs

We all know nothing stops the momentum of a great party than “dead air” (you know, when the music just stops, and there is nothing playing). To avoid this, you’re probably going to pick out lost of great songs.

But . . .

In reality, a DJ will only be able to play 10 – 15 songs per hour. And at key points of the evening, other things will be going on (ex. announcements, toasts) where there won’t be any music at all. Picking too many songs means you won’t even hear half of what you chose.

2) Wanting all the songs played in a specific order

Don’t try to put all of your chosen songs is a specified order to be played. During the reception, your DJ may need to omit some songs because there just isn’t enough time to play them all, or change up the order to keep the energy going (or to pop in a slow song or two to give your guests a little breather).

Instead, pick out songs that you really want to hear sometime during the night, as well as songs to be played at specific moments, (you know, the Grand Entrance, the First Dance, and Cutting the Cake). Give your DJ guidelines such as what genres and artists you want played, (or don’t want played), then let him/her work their magic.

So, what kind of music do you plan to have at your reception?

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

For more ideas, contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

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Photo Credit (Music Notes): angelp / 123RF Stock Photo

Photo Credit (Stack of CDs): gemenacom / 123RF Stock Photo

11 Ways to Save Money on Your Wedding That Actually Work

Save Money on Your Wedding
It’s no secret that weddings cost a lot of money.

Here are 11 easy ways to save money without sacrificing your wedding style.

  1. Individual programs or menu cards look pretty, but you can save a bundle by providing this information on a pretty calligraphed sign.
  2. Serve only beer and wine instead of offering a full bar.
  3.  Skip the champagne toast (or just have it for the head table). Your guests will be fine drinking what they have.
  4.  Some vendors offer discounts for a wedding on a weekday or during a non-peak month such as January or March.
  5.  You can save on catering by having a morning or early afternoon ceremony/reception.
  6.  Trim your guest list. You’ll save on food and beverages. And less people means less seating, which = less tables/chairs, centerpieces, and linens.
  7. Offer a meatless entree. A veggie or pasta entree costs less than one with meat.
  8.  Have your ceremony and reception at the same venue. No need for a limo or party bus to transport the wedding party, and you’ll save on multiple site fees.
  9.  Omit favors, your guests won’t miss them.
  10.  Use more greenery and less flowers in your arrangements.
  11.  If your ceremony and reception are at the same location, have your DJ provide the music for both instead of hiring live musicians for the ceremony.

Looking for fun ideas, or need help with your wedding plans?
Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Photo credit: rrraum / 123RF Stock Photo

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Want Happy Wedding Guests? Here Are the Top 5 Things to Avoid.

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Photo by Jack Hoying

Your wedding guests have taken the time to come to your wedding to witness your wedding vows, and many have probably travelled great distances. They want to enjoy themselves, have a good time, and celebrate your first day as newlyweds .

To make their experience more pleasant and memorable (for the right reasons!) the following is a list of the top 5 things wedding guests hate.

1. A long gap between the ceremony and the reception
Try to have the reception start as close to the end of the ceremony as possible. If the ceremony and reception are at the same location this is super easy. If at different locations just figure out the end time of the ceremony and the drive time from there to the reception.

If a long gap between ceremony and reception can’t be avoided, provide something for your guests to do. A list of local sights to see, area shopping, A hospitality room at the hotel where your guests are staying is a simple, yet inexpensive touch. Light snacks (chips and soda) are all that’s needed. Maybe a friend or family member who lives nearby can invite guests over for cookies and light beverages.

2. A ceremony that doesn’t start on time

untitled-354pp_w850_h566Photo by Zac Fisher

A delay of a minute or two is fine. Making them wait 20 minutes or more is not.

3. Slow dinner service
Your guests have already sat through your ceremony, and although you may have provided some yummy appetizers and cocktails, by the time dinner is served they will be hungry. And when your tummy is on the verge of growling, nothing is worse than long buffet lines that take forever, or seeing another table get their dinners served but having to wait for what can seem like an eternity for them to get around to your table.

This can be avoided by having enough wait staff. Rule of thumb is 1 to 2 wait staff per 10 to 12 guests for a served dinner, and 1 wait staff per 25 guests for a buffet. Another easy buffet trick is to have the buffet table(s) double sided instead of having it pushed up against a wall (this gets people through the line twice as quickly).

4. Long lines for the bar or restrooms
bar-50038108_s

Photo by kadmy / 123RF Stock Photo

You can’t celebrate when you’re stuck in a line. For bartenders, figure on having 1 bartender per 50 to 75 guests. For restrooms, 1 potty per 35 to 50 guests (with a minimum of 2 – 1 for the men and 1 for the ladies).

5. Sitting in the hot sun for an outdoor ceremony

violet-outdoor-ceremony-53136495_s

Photo by 279photo / 123RF Stock Photo

Yes, I’m a fan of readings and music during the ceremony, and love the symbolism of the unity candle. But these things take time.

If your wedding ceremony will take place outdoors on a hot, humid day with little or no shade, use the KISS method (keep it short and sweet). Provide hand fans (they are inexpensive, and will help make the heat more tolerable).

Consider providing something to drink before the ceremony. Bottled water or urns with iced water is inexpensive, yet refreshing. Having pre-poured beverages looks nice, will quickly attract little bugs.

Weddings From The Heart can make your wedding day stress-free, enjoyable, and just the way you want. Contact me at 937-235-2586, 937-581-3647, or jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net and schedule your free, initial appointment!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Say No to Blisters – Keeping Your Feet Comfortable in Your Wedding Shoes

Shoes . . .

We all wear them. And no pair will be more important, or have more thought put into, than the ones you’ll wear on your wedding day.

Your wedding shoes:

    • are the perfect accessory for your wedding gown

 

  • will be photographed

 

 

  • will be oohed and aahed over by your guests

 

 

But you’re going to be on your feet for seven to eight hours straight easy, and . . .

There’s nothing worse than painful blisters, pinched toes, and hurting feet, especially on your wedding day.

Avoid hobbling around the next morning by:

    • Skipping narrow styles and opt for a pair with a wide toe box

 

  • Choosing a moderate heel (2 – 2 ½ inches is good)

 

 

  • Wearing those stilettos you’ve been dying to wear for the ceremony, then switching to something lower for the reception

 

 

  • Practicing walking in your shoes before your wedding day

 

 

  • Using cushiony insoles to help protect the bottoms of your feet

 

 

  • If you frequently get blisters, applying a blister preventative (try Dr. Scholl’s Blister Treatment or Sole Goddess Blister Protection Foot Balm), before putting on your shoes

 

 

  • Having blister treatment, such as Band-Aid Advanced Healing Blister Cushions, on hand in case your feet do start to rub

 

Looking for fun ideas, or need help with your wedding plans? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Photo credit: Faye Sommer Photography

The Rising Costs of Being A Wedding Guest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The newspaper headline said, “It’s getting pricier to be a wedding guest.” Naturally I had to read it.

Why is it getting pricier? The article didn’t really say, other than citing wedding gifts, travel to the wedding locale, attire, and other wedding related festivities. But haven’t those expenditures always been linked to attending a wedding in some shape or form?

It also cites that weddings used to be community affairs where friends and family members took care of the food, photos, music, etc. So how does this really affect what it costs to attend a wedding?

While the article doesn’t give any clear explanation, think of it this way . . .

Where the wedding is held

Weddings were community affairs as the bride and groom were often from (and possibly still lived in) the same town, as did their families and friends. Everyone knew everyone. Meaning . . . the wedding took place where everyone was.

Fast forward to today . . .

College and job prospects now take the bride and groom away from the towns where they grew up. So, where to have the wedding? The bride’s home town? The groom’s? Maybe the town where they currently live? Either way, many people will have to travel beyond just driving across town.

So if they have to travel anyway, why not a destination wedding?

Travel = airfare and lodging. An expenditure that didn’t exist in the times of “community affair” weddings.

Gifts from the wedding guests

The article also shares a couple views of increasing costs of wedding gifts that I can only explain as faulty logic:

1. Your gift should be “equivalent to how well you’re wined and dined” by the bride and groom.

Um, no.

Your gift is a GIFT. Merriam-Webster defines ‘gift’ as “a thing given willingly to someone without payment.” What you choose to give the couple is not compensation for what they paid for their event.

2. “People instinctively knew what a couple needed to start housekeeping.”

Guess what. People still know this. They haven’t forgotten. However, couples are typically older and have established a household already by the time they get married. They have pots and pans, tablecloths, bed linens and whatnot needed to “start housekeeping.”

Is it getting pricier to be a wedding guest. Absolutely. The dynamics of weddings have changed.

But then again isn’t everything (groceries, filling the gas tank, seeing a movie, . . .)?

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Are you looking for unique ideas for your wedding? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647, or by email at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net!

Photo credit: elitravo / 123RF Stock Photo

Happy Book Lovers Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today (August 9) is National Book Lovers Day.

With books we can journey to faraway lands, meet fantastical creatures. Books make us feel a myriad of emotions.

We’ve all got our favorite styles – romance, horror, biographical… even cookbooks! So whatever form your favorite printed word comes in (or even no words – one of my favorites is Stairs by Rein Jansma – a serene and relaxing pop-up book featuring 10 pop-up stairs), open up that cover and enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ways to celebrate Book Lovers Day:

* Visit a library
* Reread an old favorite
* Attend (or host) a book club meeting
* Read aloud to someone
* Read that book you’ve been wanting to read but haven’t gotten around to yet

Are you a book lover who is planning a wedding? There are many ways to show off your love of the page.

Ways to incorporate books in your wedding

* Stacks of books in your centerpieces

 

 

 

 

 

 

* Tables named after book titles or characters

* Accent for a memory table

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Alice in Wonderland memorial table designed by Weddings From The Heart)
* Used books as wedding favors

* Pages used in table swags, confetti, or table runners

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Alice in Wonderland table swag designed by Weddings From The Heart)
* Holding your ceremony in a library

* Card catalog escort cards

* A library book card wedding invitation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

* Book themed wedding (popular choices are Alice in Wonderland, The Great Gatsby, Harry Potter, The Princess Bride)

Other ways to embrace your love of books is to incorporate quotes from your favorite works of literature into your vows or ceremony readings. They can be romantic, whimsical, or even quirky.

Love Quotes from Literature

Piglet: “How do you spell love?”
Pooh: “You don’t spell it, you feel it.”
~ by A. A. Milne

“Once upon a time there was a boy who loved a girl and her laughter was a question he wanted to spend his whole life answering.” ~ The History of Love by Nicole Krauss

“As You Wish.” ~ The Princess Bride by William Goldman

“Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” ~ Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling

“I would rather share one lifetime with you than face all the ages of this world alone.” ~ The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien

“Now join your hands, and with your hands your hearts.” ~ King Henry ” by William Shakespeare

“Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.” ~ Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

For more fun ideas for your wedding day, contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Photo Credits
Heart-Shaped Pages: 353/365 – 9/26/2011 via photopin (license)
Stairs: unknown
Centerpiece: Weddings From The Heart
Memory Table: Prima Vista Photography
Just Married Swag: Weddings From The Heart
Library Card Invitation: kraphix / 123RF Stock Photo

16 Things a Bride and Groom to Be Need to Ask Their Wedding Venueby David Thurston

Is the wedding venue available on our wedding day?
Sounds like an obvious first question doesn’t it, but you really need to ask it first. There is no point visiting a potential wedding venue, falling in love with the idea of getting married there and not being able to make your dreams happen because another bride and groom got there first.

If you’ve already chosen your special date, then we suggest you telephone the wedding venue ahead of the visit and state you can only make that date, if they are already booked up then get back to the list and find another fantastic wedding venue.

How many guests can be seated for a meal at the wedding venue?
This is fairly crucial, you don’t want to book a wedding venue that have a seating area for 250 people if you’re only inviting 60 to a sit down meal.

In turn you also want to ensure your guests can sit comfortably without being crammed into a small venue, or even worse, being left to feel as if they’re shoved in at the back, and can barely see the top table. Once you’ve got a rough idea of how many wedding guests are being invited, you need to make sure your chosen wedding venue suits your requirements.

Request to see a sample seating plan, ask about whether they have round tables, maybe even ask to see photos of previous wedding meals and how the tables are laid out. This will give you a good indication of whether you can seat your wedding party and ensure everyone is happy.

How many guests can the wedding venue accommodate for the wedding reception?
Some couples prefer to have a small and intimate wedding ceremony, and then follow that with the mother of all parties in the evening. If this is your plan, be sure that the wedding venue can accommodate this. You don’t want to have 200 evening guests descend on your wedding and find them all squeezed in, or unable to get to the bar. Again, the flip-side is that you don’t want to find out your wedding venue has a separate dance floor and bar area that resembles a barn – the single easiest way to have zero-atmosphere at your wedding reception is to find the wedding DJ or band playing to a half empty hall, with your wedding guests sitting around the edges not mingling.

What time can we access the wedding venue?
“Exclusively yours for the entire day!”… says their website. But what does that mean exactly? Each wedding venue will have their own rules of when you can access the building on your wedding day.

Simply confirm what time you can arrive ahead of the wedding, you don’t want to be left standing outside waiting for the cleaner to turn up.

Can the bridal party get ready at the wedding venue?
Maybe this is something the bride would prefer, instead of rushing around in the morning, why not ask the venue if they have the facilities for the bride to prepare for her wedding day in the comfort of her wedding venue.

Obviously you’ll want something nicer then a conference room, or a ladies changing room at a golf club, but if the wedding venue has a nice quiet comfortable room for the bride to arrive and perhaps have her hairdresser, make-up artist and the rest of her entourage help her prepare for her wedding day then all the easier.

Can we give you a CD of our wedding music for the bride’s entrance?
If you’re having a civil ceremony performed in an approved premises you won’t be able to use any music that has religious references in the song at all. By this we mean, terms like: Angels, Heaven, God etc etc. So no Robbie Williams ballads. The wedding venue will be fully aware of this and may have a CD of acceptable music, which is fine. However, if you want to make your wedding entrance to music of your choice you need to ensure that the wedding venue does actually allow this.

Assuming they are OK with you bringing along your own CD with your favourite song on it to play at the bridal entrance, it’s well worth dropping it off a day or two in advance to the wedding venue and asking them to test the CD on their player. You don’t want for them to try and play it as you’re nervously standing there only to find out your old CD is scratched or your CD-R won’t work on their machine.

The registrar will have to approve the songs you’ve chosen ahead of the wedding, but they should clarify all of this when you meet them.

Can we agree a timetable of the day, or are we set to your times?
Obviously a good wedding venue will suggest times to you, they’ll know how long each stage of the day will take. Ensure you can discuss the day’s timetable, agree when the ceremony will start (you’ll also need to approve that time with the registrar), plan how long the photos will take, agree the start time of the meal, decide what time to invite the evening wedding guests, and when the cutting of the cake and first dance will take place.

Can we bring our own drinks to the wedding venue, if not can we see the bar prices?
This is an interesting one, and well worth asking the question. Even if a wedding venue has a licensed bar available they still may agree that you could bring your own drinks along – even if it’s just fruit juices for the kids, it could save you money.

If you’re hiring a marquee at a venue, they will have a temporary bar for your guests – ask if you can stock the bar yourself, maybe even do a deal with someone who’ll buy all the booze for you and manage the bar for the night.

Should the wedding venue insist that you must use their bar facilities, ensure you ask to see the bar prices first, whether you or your guests are paying, no one wants a huge bar bill. Also check about wine served at the meal, and champagne for toasts.

Do we have to use your caterers, or can we instruct our own?
Some wedding venues insist that you must use their caters. This may be a restriction, however their own caters obviously have the knowledge of the venue and their kitchens, and would of catered for many weddings before – so maybe it’s not a bad thing.

However, it’s worth asking the question as if you are not committed to their caters you can shop around, and enjoy plenty of food tasting along the way.

If it’s raining, where would be the best spot to take our photos?
It won’t rain on your wedding day, surely not. Hopefully not. Maybe.

If the sun lets you down on the most important day of your life, you need a back-up plan. Have a good look around the wedding venue and ask where photos are normally taken during rainy days.

You really want to avoid having an awful backdrop indoors, when you were planning lovely photos out on the lawn. Most wedding venues are beautiful places anyhow, so they’ll be used to the British weather letting down brides before, and no doubt have a proffered beauty spot indoors to act as the back-drop for your wedding photographers to take your photos.

Is there a sound limiter on our wedding DJ or band?
Not a question most brides or grooms would consider asking, hence we threw it in the mix.

The thought is that if you’ve paid up to £500 for a wedding DJ, or potentially even more for a wedding band, then you want to be able to hear them at the back.

Unfortunately a lot of wedding venues in residential areas will be restricted to acceptable noise levels – this may mean your live entertainment loses some atmosphere on the dance floor. If you are planning a huge party for your wedding – check this first.

Do we need to order the full amount of guests for the buffet?
If you have 100 wedding guests in the evening, do you need to book a buffet for 100 people? You know that your mates will be more interested in the bar, most people who ate the wedding breakfast won’t be too hungry, so why not ask the wedding venue if you can just pay for 80% of the expected guests.

This way you’re saving some more money, and potentially saving wasted food at the end of the night.

Is there accommodation available at the wedding venue?
Maybe the wedding venue has a honeymoon suite available? A lot of weddings have visiting relatives from far afield, this means they’ll need somewhere to stay. You need to check in advance where you are going to spend your first night as a married couple, and if the venue has accommodation available then this could be your best option.

Even if you chosen wedding venue happens to be part of a hotel complex, you’ll still need to book accommodation for those who need it, so get your bookings in early.

Do you have a wedding cake stand we can use?
Your wedding cake needs to sit on something, it’s a focal point of your wedding day, and will set you back a fair few quid. No doubt the wedding cake maker will offer you a cake stand and knife for hire, but quite often the wedding venue will have a top quality cake stand ready for you.

If they do, it’s another little saving and one less thing to worry about.

Will there be any other weddings on at the same venue?
Why have we left this one so late? Well, it’s a personal choice whether you want a wedding venue entirely to yourself for the day, or whether you mind having another wedding party on the same day.

Whether it makes much difference or not depends on the size of the wedding venue. A small wedding venue may not have the space, or the different rooms for two large weddings.

You may find yourself sharing facilities, do you mind bumping into another bride?

Large hotels or golf clubs or private manor houses are often designed in a way that they can easily accommodate more then one wedding. Lets face it, weddings are big business so they want to attract as many as possible. If your chosen wedding venue will be playing host to more then one wedding on YOUR wedding day, ask to see where the two parties take place and ensure you’re comfortable with the idea.

What time does the bar shut, and what time do we have to leave?
Surely the most important question, what time can we party until? A good wedding venue will not go around at the end of the night throwing guests out of the door, however they will expect your wedding guests to leave at an appropriate time. Clarify with the venue what time is last orders at the bar, and what time does the music have to be finished by.

You’ll want one big farewell and send-off at the end of the night, so ensure your DJ is aware of the closing time and that he is prepared for the last dance and farewell to the new Mr & Mrs!

Essex Wedding specialise in wedding venues in Essex. Essex Wedding also have an excellent choice of Wedding DJ’s in Essex and wedding florists in Essex to help Brides and Grooms to be with the planning of their special day.

Article Source: EzineArticles.com expert David Thurston

A Note From Jean:
Wonderful tips. I especially love David’s suggestion of asking to see a sample seating plan. That way you’ll know that if you’re guest list is near their room capacity limit, all of your guests will be able to comfortably see what’s going on, and not be made to feel that they’ve been relegated to a back corner.

Start with the basics – Is my date available? How many people does the room hold? What time frame do we have (what time can we arrive to set up, what time do we have to be cleaned up and out)? What is the cost for the use of the room? Is there a food and beverage minimum?

Finding the perfect venue for your wedding can take a lot of work. I hope you find these tips helpful in your search.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

10 Easy (and Invisible) Money Saving Ideas

Planning a wedding requires more than just money. What gets remembered is creativity and the unusual that is meaningful to the couple.

We can help you plan a memorable event without putting dents in your budget. Here are some tried and true budget savers:

  1. Avoid peak season dates. Being married mid week instead of a weekend or in less popular months can save upwards of 20% off location costs.
  2. When you make adjustments to the guest list, make cuts in groups. For instance, if you are planning round tables that seat 8 or 10 guests, cut by that number or multiples of that number.
  3. Try to find a venue that hosts both ceremony and reception events in one place. Look for an all inclusive venue.
  4. Have a smaller wedding party (VIPs) – have two instead of six bridesmaids.
  5. Serve four appetizers instead of ten.
  6. Have your photographer stop at a specific time. Tell him when the formalities are done and the party is underway rather than expect him to stay till the last guest turns out the light.
  7. Make a grand entrance or a grand exit but don’t pay a limo to stay for both.
  8. Consider earning extra cash to assist in paying for the wedding. Get a part time job, sell some items on EBay or Craig’s List. Don’t use plastic!!!!
  9. Save on postage by including a post card RSVP.
  10. Make choices based on your personal style – choose a cocktail party reception rather than hosting a sit down dinner.
Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

photo credit: rich piggy via photopin (license)

Do you have questions or are looking for unique ideas for your wedding? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or by phone at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!