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wedding planning

Wedding Planning Basics

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You’re newly engaged and ready to start the process of planning your wedding…but where do you start and what all does planning a wedding involve?  While there are several variables, like budget, location, and size, that will impact your wedding planning specifics, we wanted to go through the general basics to help give you a guide to get the process started.

Wedding Planning: First Steps

When you’re ready to get the planning process started, the first thing you want to do is create a wedding binder.  Give yourself a good 2-3 weeks to really pull your ideas together.  This binder will be your goto book until your big day.  It will also make a cool keepsake once you’re married.  You’ll want to keep a variety of things in your binder as you go along:

  • Articles and photos from bridal and lifestyle magazines and websites
  • Contact information for your wedding team
  • Budgets and contracts
  • Swatches, colors schemes and a photocopy of your vision board (if you opt to create a poster size version)
  • Copy of your invitations, reserve the date cards, and your announcements

Your next step is going to be to define your budget.  Decide what the absolute maximum you can afford to spend is and then define your ideal goal.  This way you’ll know how much wiggle room you have to splurge as you go along.

Finally, you want to select your wedding party and pick a date.  Your bridal party will be by your side throughout the process so you want to get them confirmed early on.  And let’s face it, the entire planning process will revolve around your wedding date, so this is a must have before you move forward.

These first steps should take you about a month from start to finish.

Wedding Planning: Bringing in the Professionals

Most newly engaged understand the value of a wedding planner but are under the impression that it’s too expensive or that they can handle everything by themselves.  We caution against this misconception as hiring a professional wedding planner can actually save you time, money, and stress down the road.

When selecting your wedding planner, remember ‘referral, research, and interview’ in order to find the right wedding planner for you and your soon-to-be spouse.  Also, it’s a great idea to share your wedding binder with your planner during your first meeting.  Seeing your binder, and vision board, if you have one, will give your planner a good idea of your wants and likes and will make the overall process much easier for you both.

Once you have your wedding planner secured, you will begin the process of selecting a venue, an officiant, photographer, caterer, band, and florist.  When it comes to finding the perfect wedding professional services, your wedding planner will be able to guide you and help to set up tastings, meetings, and events where you can experience for yourself which services you would like to book.  The monthly EBE Live Band Showcase is a great example of how you can hear tons of great bands in one afternoon and find the perfect sound for your upcoming wedding.

This phase typically lasts about three months from start to finish.

Wedding Planning: The Little Things

Your wedding planner will guide you through everything as you get closer to your big day, but some little details to keep in mind include:

  • Reserving hotel room blocks for out of town guests
  • Creating wedding goodie bags for out of town guests they’ll receive upon arrival
  • Creating a wedding website
  • Developing a day-of timeline so everything is laid out in detail (make this available to your maid of honor as well)

Create a detailed checklist with your wedding planner so you’re sure everything that’s important to you is covered, no matter how small the task is.  RealSimple has a great checklist that you can use as an initial wedding planning checklist guide.  This checklist will help guide you through the remainder of the process, right up through your big day.

The two most important things to remember are that no two weddings are alike….this is your big day, so make it personal and a reflection of you.  This is your love story to tell, not anyone else’s.  Secondly, relax and have fun!  This process can be an overwhelming one, so lean on your wedding planner and maid of honor (that’s what they are there for) and soak up every moment along the way to your big day.

Holiday Wedding Inspiration

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Holiday weddings are a great idea because it allows everyone to be together to celebrate both the holiday and your special day all at once.  When done correctly, they are also absolutely breathtaking events.

Here are some of our favorite design ideas to help inspire your holiday wedding planning.

Holiday Weddings: Colors of the Season

If you’re planning a wedding in late November or December, then you’ll want to go with the colors of the season.  Think warm rich reds, greens, golds, blues, and silvers.  Try and avoid anything over sparkly and super muted as the impact can get lost in photos.

You can mix the colors or select the main one, like a deep red, and use gold or silver as an accent.  And remember, when it comes to holiday colors, less is more, so there is no need to drape everything that doesn’t move with red and green.  Incorporate white and black to help off-set the overwhelming effect too much red and green can have on a venue.

Tip: When it comes to finding holiday decorating pieces, shop in the offseason as you’ll be more likely to find them at discounted prices.

Holiday Weddings: Incorporating Tradition

The holidays have lots of traditional elements that, when you see them, immediately envoke the feeling of the season, so tie them into your decor wherever possible.  Here are some fun ideas to consider:

  • Give gold bells as wedding favors
  • Use pine cones as your cake topper and decoration
  • Use linens and glassware with snowflakes on them
  • Add small bells to your bridal bouquet
  • Use comfy, holiday colored blankets to mark the bride and groom chairs
  • Use stockings to hold the flatware on your table setting
  • Surrounding the altar area with Christmas trees and hang mistletoe overhead
  • Use colored ornaments to decorate your buffet and gift table
  • Use lush greenery and twigs to create stunning Star of David decorations
  • Add elf accessories and snowman attire to your photobooth props for whimsical fun

Need a little more inspiration?  Check out our Holiday Wedding Pinterest board or this great article from Martha Stewart Weddings for more ideas of how to create the holiday wedding of your dreams.

 

Rules of Engagement

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The day has finally come and you are officially engaged — congratulations!  Now what?  Well, outside of beginning to plan for your upcoming wedding, there are a few things that go along with being engaged that most people don’t talk about, so we thought we would take a few minutes to cover them with you.

Don’t Down Play Your Proposal

However it happened, wherever you were, it was special and was about the two of you, so don’t downplay your story or try and compare it to the lavish experiences of others.  When people ask, share all the details of the moment if you want or simply say something like ‘it was quiet, intimate, and perfect’ and leave it at that if you prefer to keep the details of memory to yourself.  And be prepared to repeat the story because people will ask.

 

It’s Polite to Stare

I know your mother always told you it was impolite to stare, but in this case, stare away at your ring all you want!  For many newly engaged, things are still a bit surreal — even if you were expecting it.  Enjoy staring at your ring as the reality sinks in.

And be prepared to show it off!  Get a manicure immediately because people are going to ask to see the ring and you want to be prepared.

 

It’s Okay Not to Know

Right out of the gate, people are going to ask you if you’ve chosen a date yet.  It’s okay to say ‘no’ or ‘we haven’t even started planning yet.’  It is more than acceptable to take a step back, let the reality of your engagement sink in, and just enjoy being engaged for a while before you select a date.

Remember, this is your engagement and your wedding, so it’s fine to take things at your own pace.

 

Happy and Unhappy

While you know the majority of people will be as excited as you are about your engagement, be prepared for the occasional nay-sayer.  For whatever reason, some people are down on marriage or might be less supportive than the rest of your friends and family.

When you run into a negative reaction, just be polite and move on.  Don’t dwell on it and don’t let it ruin your excitement.

 

Know-It-All Married Folk

Be prepared for your married friends to start shelling out advice immediately about how to plan or who to call.  Just remember that they mean well.  Graciously accept their advice and take their suggestions in stride.

Remember they are just trying to be supportive.  At the end of the day though, it’s your special day and you can take or leave their advice because you’ll be planning a wedding that is a reflection of your love story and not their’s.

 

Enjoy Being Engaged

Don’t try and rush the process or become so consumed by planning your wedding that you miss out on enjoying being engaged.  Even if you’ve been living together for a while, becoming engaged will feel different and your relationship will need some time to adjust to this new level.

It’s a wonderfully unique and special part of the getting married process, so try and soak up every moment of it.

 

Destination Wedding and Local Reception

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Destination weddings are increasing in popularity, so we thought it was time for us to dive into the topic ourselves.  From etiquette to inspiration, we have everything you need to know about planning a destination wedding and holding your reception back at home.

Planning Your Destination Wedding

Before you settle on the ‘perfect location’ you will want to do your research.  Find out everything about your hotel, resort or venue.

Here are some common questions you’ll want the answers to before choosing your location:

  • When is the hurricane or the rainy season?
  • Are there any health or safety issues guests will need to be concerned about?
  • Is your destination LGBTQ friendly?
  • Are children allowed at your venue?
  • Will there be discounts or special rates offered to your guests?
  • Is this an all-inclusive venue and if so, will your guests receive any of those benefits?
  • Are passports required to attend your wedding location?
  • Are there limitations as to what you can bring with you (drinks, flowers, gifts, etc.) for the event?
  • Does your venue offer any guarantees or money-back returns for you and your guests should the event be canceled and if so, what is the policy for cancellation? (Note: Guests might have to cancel or inclement weather could prevent the event from taking place as scheduled, so this is always good to know ahead of time.)

We also recommend that you visit your venue before booking your wedding.  Yes, photos and reviews can tell you a lot about a place; however, nothing will give you the best information like first-hand experience.  You’re about to ask your friends and family to shell out some cash to attend your destination wedding, so you want to make sure everything is in order and the place is all it says it is before inviting your guests.

When it comes to inviting your guests, be as clear and transparent as you can about any potential costs.  It’s also helpful to secure a travel agent as part of your wedding planning team and include their information in your invitation details.  Also, send your invitations out extra early in order to allow guests ample time for planning and purchasing tickets.

Planning for Your Reception at Home

You most likely won’t be inviting everyone to your destination wedding, so it will be time to celebrate with family and friends once you’re back!  You’ll want to plan this party before you head out for your wedding and send out the invitation out 5-6 weeks prior to the event.

A post-destination wedding local reception works very much like a traditional reception, except you will have been happily married for a few weeks.  If you want to redo your vows that’s absolutely acceptable.  If not, then do your best to allow your local guests to experience what the wedding was like by setting up a photo and/or video station by the sign-in book.  This way they can see everything that transpired and feel like they were a part of your big day as well.

When it comes to what you, your new spouse, and the bridal party should wear, you have optionsEveryone can wear their wedding attire or you can all opt for something more casual. If you do go for casual, consider displaying your wedding dress and tux just to show them both off, and keep with your wedding colors.

The rest of the event will run pretty much like a traditional wedding with food, drinks, music, and dancing. You can include as many or as few formalities as you would like – the most important thing is to celebrate!
Looking for assistance planning your destination wedding and local reception?  Contact our EBE Expert Wedding Planners and let them help to guide you through the entire process.

 

 

EBE Named The Know Best of Weddings 2018

EBE Events & Entertainment Named The Knot Best of Weddings 2018

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EBE Events & Entertainment is pleased to announce that they have been selected as a 2018 ­­winner in The Knot Best of Weddings, an award representing the highest-rated wedding professionals as reviewed by real couples, their families and wedding guests on The Knot,  the leading online wedding brand, and app.  This is the 12th consecutive year EBE Events & Entertainment has been selected for The Knot Best of Weddings. EBE has also been honored with The Knot Best Of Weddings Hall of Fame designation. This is an honor only given to professionals voted best by real newlyweds four or more times.

In 2018, only 3% of the approximately 300,000 local wedding professionals listed on TheKnot.com have received this distinguished accolade. In its twelfth annual year, The Knot continues its longstanding tradition of supporting local wedding vendors with The Knot Best of Weddings 2018, an annual by-couples, a for-couples guide to the top wedding professionals across the country. To determine the winners, The Knot assessed almost 3.6 million reviews across the various vendor categories—venues, musicians, florists, photographers, caterers and more. These winners represent the best of the best wedding professionals that a bride or groom would want to consider booking for their own unique wedding.

“It is truly an honor to be named as one of the top Wedding Event Service Providers in the country by The Knot,” said Mike Gendler, Co-Founder of EBE Events & Entertainment.  “Everyone here, from the front office to the event planners, live musical performers, Emcees and DJs, truly love what we do, and we believe it shows in our work.”

As the number one online wedding brand and app, The Knot has inspired approximately 25 million couples to plan a wedding that’s uniquely theirs. With a rich history of providing quality content and inspiration, The Knot is making it easier for couples to connect with and book just the right wedding professionals to create their perfect wedding day. Eight out of 10 couples come to The Knot where they can be connected to any of the approximately 300,000 local wedding professionals across the country. The Knot marries great technology with trusted content–and a little love–to make planning for the most important day of a person’s life easier and more enjoyable.

For more information about The Knot Best of Weddings and a complete list of winners, please visit https://www.theknot.com/vendors/best-of-weddings.

For more information about EBE Events & Entertainment and to attend an upcoming band showcase, please visit http://www.ebetalent.com/expo.

Wedding and Events Planning and Music

The Best of Wedding and Event Planning and Entertainment in Philadelphia

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For more than 25 years, EBE Events & Entertainment has stood as a wedding and events industry leader in the Tri-State Area.  EBE is an award-winning, full-service event planning, production, and entertainment company that has made its reputation as a true innovator in the wedding and events space.

Unlike most of the other event and entertainment service companies in the area, EBE offers a fleet of bands and musical options, each of which is comprised of top local talent and focuses on a certain genre of music.  Whether your event calls for a jazz band, a group with hip-hop flare, a classic orchestra quartet or even the traditional DJ, EBE has exactly the musical entertainment you want.

Headed by musicians and entrepreneurs, Mike Gendler and Steve Meranus, EBE Events & Entertainment has a proven track record for providing unique, one-of-a-kind experiences for the client’s corporate events, bar and bat mitzvahs, and weddings of the past two decades.  “No matter who you work with at EBE, you’ll feel the excitement and warmth and will quickly come to understand why we say that we love what we do,” states Co-Founder, Mike Gendler.   “Every client is unique, as is their event, so we strive to create a personalized experience every time.”

“Part of what makes us different is that we truly are full-service,” says CoFounder, Steve Meranus.  “We offer opportunities for our clients to check out our bands and experience, first-hand, what an event with us is like for free, even before they’ve chosen to work with us.  Our event planners and band leaders take great pride in their work, so they stay connected with our clients throughout the process and focus on all the little details, so our clients don’t have to.”

No matter how big or small, EBE Events & Entertainment has the knowledge, talent and experience to create the perfect corporate event or wedding just for you!  Attend one of our upcoming band or DJ showcases and experience for yourself why EBE Events & Entertainment is the industry leader.

Please visit EBE Events & Entertainment at ebetalent.com and follow us on social media: Facebook/EBETalent, and @ebetalent on Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.