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Wedding Planning Basics

By | Blog | 276 Comments

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

By | Uncategorized | 885 Comments

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.

 

Wedding Traditions: Creative Ideas for Something Blue

By | Blog, DIY | 1,313 Comments

We’ve all heard the rhyme “Something Olde, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue, and A Sixpence in your Shoe.”  The Old English rhyme identifies the four objects a bride should add to her outfit or carry down the aisle with her on her big day for good luck.

Since this seemingly innocent tradition can send some brides into a superstitious-frenzy as they scramble to find all four elements at the last moment, we thought it would be fun to share a few ideas that might help you meet this wedding day custom head-on in a fun and modern way.

Wedding Traditions: Ways to Wear Blue

Wearing ‘something blue’ is one of the most traditional ways to meet the requirements of the rhyme.  For a new twist on this one, consider putting something on the inside of your dress.

Take a small scrap from one of your mom or grandmother’s old dresses and turn it into a small heart that you can sew into the inside of your corset.  This way, you’ll have ‘something old’ and ‘something blue’, and a little piece of the strong women that came before you, right next to your heart the entire way down the aisle.

 

One of the coolest trends we’ve seen is to have your wedding date embroidered on the inside hem of your dress.  If you do it in blue, you’ll have ‘something blue’ that also marks the date for you. Put a twist on this one by including your new Mr. & Mrs. names as well.

Want to have a little fun?  Then bring in your ‘something blue’ to the bottom of your shoes!  Using special paint, you can paint the soles of your shoes bright blue, dark blue or even sparkly blue.

You can also create a fun message on the soles of your shoes with blue stickers.  Put your name, your wedding date, or even the message of “I DO” that you can flash at your groom while cutting a rug on the dance floor during your reception.  You can find special paint and pre-cut stickers to help you create your own DIY version for your wedding slippers on Amazon.com or Michaels.com.

 

Ready to really think outside of the wedding gift box?  Then why not wear a flowing silk or chiffon pale blue wedding dress?  Or go a little more old school and simply choose a white or off-white fabric that has blue embroidery etched into the fabric design?

No one said your underskirt or petticoat has to match your dress exactly.  Why not bring in ‘something blue’ underneath your dress?  It will be your little secret until you hop on the dance floor and break into a can-can with your bridal party!

Modern wedding edict gives today’s brides more flexibility, so have some fun!  You can still maintain a more traditional or formal appearance while having fun with a unique wedding dress.

Wedding Traditions: Ways to Carry Blue

Another way to bring in ‘something blue’ is to simply carry it with you down the aisle.  Your options here are seemingly endless.  Here are just a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

  • a stunning floral arrangement full of blue flowers (or even just one blue flower that is hidden in the mix)
  • blue ribbons tied around your flowers
  • a blue handkerchief
  • a blue rosary (could also be counted as ‘something new’, ‘something borrowed’, or even ‘something old’ depending on where it comes from)
  • a blue card or note with wishes and hopes for your future spouse that you tie to your bouquet and carry down the aisle with you and deliver in a private moment later in the evening

Wedding Traditions: Ways to Share Blue

While the rhyme itself traditionally focuses on the bride, why not share the fun and include other members or your bridal party?

Write a special note on a blue card and include it with a blue piece of jewelry, like earrings or a necklace, for your bridesmaids.  You can also get stickers for the bottoms of their shoes or blue ribbons for them to add to their shoes.

Want to include your mom?  Give her an aquamarine necklace she can wear to the wedding or a beautiful blue piece of art she can display in her house to remember the day.

 

Bring the Old English tradition into the modern era by including your soon-to-be!  Fill a blue bag or blue box with gifts that will help them take part in the custom.  You can include a number of items such as:

  • blue socks, a tie, or a pocket square
  • a blue coin to put in their shoe
  • paint or stickers for the bottom of their shoes
  • a blue picture frame with a photo of just the two of you
  • a bag of blue Jolly Ranchers
  • a CD full of romantic blues music (see what we did there?)

 

Why not carry your ‘something blue’ with you off into the sunset?  Think about how much fun it would be for you and your new spouse to ride away from the reception on blue Vespas?  Not only would it make for a radically cool exit, you would also be left with a couple of amazingly unique souvenirs from your big day that you can ride around town together for years to come.

Looking for more inspiring ideas and wedding traditions for your big day?  Our wedding planners are some of the best in the business and know a thing or two about making weddings fun and unique.  Contact the EBE Event Planners today and let them help you create a day of magical memories.