Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Wedding Wednesday Link Up // My Top Wedding Planning Tips

This week I am co-hosting Wedding Wednesday with Mary from the Happy Wife in New Orleans. Since this is my first time linking up, and since I haven't blogged about my own wedding in a long time I thought I would share some pictures from the wedding as well as my favorite things and tips. 

Early on in wedding planning I realized that I had to prioritize what I really wanted and what I could make cuts on. I highly suggest reading many blogs and magazines and figuring out exactly what you want and making a wedding binder with all the photos you collect. It makes it much easier to actually show vendors what you want. I took mine with me to every meeting I had and made sure my vision was clear. 




Flowers were one of those issues I couldn't decide on. My bouquet was easy, I knew what I wanted years before I was engaged. The problem came with boutonnieres and bridesmaids/centerpieces. The majority of my flower budget went to my bouquet alone, and Jeremy's personality just doesn't scream "man who wears flowers." I came across a boutonniere on Etsy that consisted of feathers and other trinkets that just seemed much more our style, only problem...one of them was $15 dollars. I needed more than one and didn't have the money to buy as many as I needed. So I made them. All for $15. I should really go back and make a DIY of it. 

We were having more of a cocktail hour type reception, no formal seating and a combo of passed  foods and stations. Because of this we only had 4 actual tables around the dance floor (hardly anyone really sat anyway) so using the bridesmaids bouquets as centerpieces too made $$ sense. I just made sure they were the first to walk through and place their flowers in the right spot. To save money I stayed with my ruffle theme (like my dress) and picked white ruffly carnations with greenery for the girls. They were much cheaper than other flowers and looked great. My one request for their bouquets though was that the flowers were packed so tight that it just looked like ruffles and no one flower would be identifiable. 




The cake was another one of those interesting things, it turned out very pretty, but was a debate between fondant or not. I actually found a stencil of what I wanted exactly, the only problem was that I had a very creative cake decorator who didn't want to use a stencil. She made her own and it turned out great. Lucky for me I win the fondant debate with Mom and got the cake look I wanted . 

The bouquet on the table was money added, but I felt it was necessary. It just so happened to be my throw away bouquet, and it was totally fake. I just couldn't bare the idea of throwing a peony bouquet into the air and letting someone take it home. We dried my real one by the way. 




Photography was another thing that I thought was very important. If you want a good photographer you will need to book them 8 months to a year in advance. Of the 3 I wanted most 2 were already booked in October and our wedding was in May. I am glad I had the two photographers I had though because I will cherish these photos forever. 
We used Two Suez for our engagements and Jennifer Lizenby for bridals and wedding. 




My dress was an interesting beast. I knew I wanted something different, but budget an unique don't go hand in hand usually. For some reason I had saved a Glamour magazine from years earlier that had a wedding dress from Thread that was beautiful and very inexpensive. They specialize as a boutique wedding dress shop in California and carry very different dresses. They had really expanded what they carry these days and can accommodate any type of wedding. I was in the process of ordering and while corresponding with a consultant at Thread she told me to hold off until October because they gave a 10% discount for breast cancer. My Nanny had overcome breast cancer while I was in high school and to buy my dress from a company that supported cancer research made my dress all the more special. 




My photographer suggested we take first look pictures, while it was just becoming popular at the time and I didn't have a opinion on the matter, I happily agreed. I am ever so glad I did, we were married in late May in Mississippi. The South is hot ya'll! (I so hope you can hear my accent reading that) Since we took 98% of our posed pics before hand we were able to not make out guests wait and kick back and enjoy the reception just as much as everyone else. Some brides have major preferences on this topic, this is definitely a to each their own issue, but I was very happy we did a first look. It saved a ton of time, and my hair and makeup were fresh in the posed pics.




I could go on for days, but we will stop at this. Discover your style and own it. Don't let other's tell you something is ridiculous when you know you really want it. Go with the flow. Your first venue may not be available, I wanted to be married in the chapel at the church I grew up in. It was demolished a month after we were engaged and the church was being remodeled until the week of our wedding. I couldn't risk the venue so we booked a plantation in Natchez that was solid ont he date. Play music that is true to your personality. We ranged from heavy rock, to swing, to oldies, to classical. It was us and I loved how it turned out. In the end you will only have pictures and memories from that day, you have to be sure to do the best with what you have and enjoy yourself. Yes, I have regrets and wish I could have controlled things out of my control, but in the end it looked great and I was very happy with the outcome. Heck I married a great guy! 




What was your favorite thing about your wedding or a wedding you attended? 


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Welcome to the Wedding Wednesday Link Up Party with A Happy Wife in New Orleans!!! 
The last WW Link Up Party (the first one ever) had 25 link ups!!!! Let's try to get more this time! A reminder that this link up party will occur every two weeks, so start creating your wedding posts!!

What is this link up party all about?
Link up any wedding-related post on your blog. This can be a favorite post of yours previously written or a new post. Anything wedding related! Wedding planning, your own wedding recaps, a wedding you were in, a wedding you attended, bridal showers, engagement stories, honeymoons, etc... You get the picture! Be sure to link up a different post for every new link up party. 


Now let's meet this week's co-hosts who have helped make this party a reality!




Here are your "vows" to linking up:
1. Link up your favorite "wedding" related post on your blog. It could be a new post or one previously written. ** Be sure to include the link directly to that post.**
2. Please link back to me within your post (text link or party button). I will feature my favorite posts and will only feature those posts that include a direct link back to me.
3. It is mandatory to follow your Host and Co-hosts {#1 - 4} via GFC.
4. Visit other blogs that have linked up and let them you know stopped bye.
5. Help spread the word about this fun link up party!



A Happy Wife in New Orleans





Interested in co-hosting a future Wedding Wednesday Link Up Party? 

I am so excited to see everyone's wedding post! 
Thank you for saying "I DO" to the Wedding Wednesday Link Up Party!

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