Wedding Table Styles

Written by: Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

Now that you’ve received your RSVPs and have an estimate of who will be at the wedding and how many people will be at the wedding, you need to choose table styles. Most people usually use the round tables but there are a few other options for you to choose from.

 

Round Tables:

  • Round tables are the most popular table style for weddings.
  • Each table usually sits around 8 to 10 people.
  • This style of tables is also usually free with the venue.
  • They are easy for facilitating conversations between lots of people.
  • They also usually only require one centerpiece each, which will save you money in the long run, especially if you have flower centerpieces.

 

Square Tables:

  • Square tables are the least popular table style for weddings.
  • Each table generally seats around 4 to 8 guests.
  • You will need more tables and space to accommodate your guests if you go with this style.
  • This style gives a more modern and sleek feel to the wedding.
  • They encourage socializing and create a unique room design.
  • These generally cost more because venues don’t typically have them in stock so you will have to order them, along with special linens to fit them.

 

Banquet Tables:

  • This style of table is long and rectangular.
  • It is usually used for family-style dining.
  • These tables usually give the event a more elegant feel.
  • Some venues have these tables in their inventory so you might not have to pay extra for them.
  • This style is very large so sometimes it does not fit the space with the guest size.
  • Centerpieces will be more expensive because you will need more than one for each table.

 

Mixed Tables:

  • If you love all the styles and just can’t decide, “congratulations!” you don’t have to.
  • You can mix and match different table styles any way you want.
  • This gives the event a more unique and eclectic feel.
  • When arranging this make sure that the flow in and out of the venue will be safe for all the guests and that no tables or chairs get in the way of entering and exiting.

 

 

 

 

Wedding Floor Plans

Written by: Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

Let’s be real here, this is the one part of a wedding you reluctantly have to plan. Unfortunately, no one can do this for you because no one knows your guests like you do. This is the dreaded seating plan for your wedding reception. There are two main ways to go about seating your guests. These are traditional seating arrangements and open seating. Both come with their own pros and cons.

 

Traditional Seating Arrangements: Pros

  • People are generally comfortable. – Most people usually have family members or friends that are controversial and will clash with others so this helps minimize their interactions and prevent trouble
  • All seats will be used. – No guest will be left without a seat or someone that they know. You can manipulate who goes where for flow of the event as well.

 

Traditional Seating Arrangements: Cons

  • Time consuming – This process takes time because no one ever has the perfect number of people or the perfect group of people. Each friend or family member needs to be taken into consideration in order to make them comfortable.
  • Costs more money. – Having a traditional seating chart and plan means that you must purchase place cards for each guest. If you order these from a stationary company or a calligrapher, prices can get sky high very quickly.

 

Open Seating: Pros

  • Saves time! – You won’t have to waste tons of hours putting together a plan that everyone might not like.
  • Saves money. – You will not have to spend extra money on stationary or calligraphy buying place cards for your guests.

 

Open Seating: Cons

  • There will be unused seats or seats no one wants. – Certain groups have a certain number of people. Say one of your groups of friends has 7 people and they all sit at an 8-person table. No one will want to sit in that 8th seat because they don’t know anyone at the table.
  • People that don’t know anyone at the wedding will feel like they don’t have a place to sit and be uncomfortable.

 

So, know your guests, and know your wedding. Floor plans are a decision that must be made, but that can have a huge impact on the event!

 

http://somethingturquoise.com/2011/09/02/diy-easy-seating-chart/

Wedding Invites: Dos and Don’ts

By: Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

Paper wedding invitations and all paper goods are a classic way to invite your guests to the wedding. It is also a very personal thing as opposed to a Facebook, Email, or Website invitation. Making your invites personal and doing them correctly will please your guests and make your life easier.

https://www.etsy.com/listing/291550351/printable-wedding-invitation-suite-leafy?ref=shop_home_active_4

The DOs:

Do include the date, time, address, and any other necessary information so guests are not confused and contacting you with tons of questions.

Do make sure all spelling, punctuation, and grammar is correct. This is a formal letter of invitation; it needs to sound like one.

Do make sure to send your invitations out 3 to 4 months before your wedding. Also, if you are sending them, make sure to send out save the dates 6 to 8 months before the wedding.

Do include either an RSVP card or a detail card that tells them how to RSVP. Depending on who you are inviting, the traditional paper RSVP card is best or an RSVP on the wedding website is best. You can also use both, this is just harder to keep track of. Always include an “RSVP by” date on the detail card.

Do count the cost of postage and weigh your invitations with everything included to make sure you send them correctly and they don’t get sent back to you.

Do put the names of the people invited to the wedding. Don’t put the whole family down if only the parents are invited. This is also an easy way to cut down on attendance if this is an issue for you.

And lastly, always order extra invitations and envelopes. You never know who you will forget to invite and it is so easy to mess up when addressing an invitation.

 

The DON’Ts:

Don’t send out etiquette invites in the hopes that people will decline to come. This is risky, especially if you have a set budget or a venue that is very small. People will surprise you and they may come to the wedding.

Don’t send save the dates to people you are not inviting to the wedding. Finalize your list before you send anything out.

Don’t include registry information on the invitation! This information can be put on a detail card with the invite, the save the date, or the wedding website.

 

 

 

 

Wedding Gift Registry : Dos and Don’ts

Written by:  Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

Registries are important to get set up but there are a few tricks to help your guests and create ease of use for gaining access to everything. These are the dos and don’ts of creating your wedding registry.

 

DOs

-Try to set up your registry as soon as possible. People will start to ask where you are registered and possibly get you gifts for other showers, like at the bridal showers. You need to have your registry created before you send out save the dates and other paper goods.

-Include the wedding website URL on your entire wedding stationary except for the wedding invitations. This information can be included in an RSVP or detail card along with the invite.

-ALWAYS make sure to keep track of who sent you what. This will come in very handy when you are writing thank you letters. Hand write your thank yous and make them personal. Try and send them in a timely fashion. They is usually expected sometime before 6 weeks after the wedding.

DON’Ts

-Don’t take your registry down right after the wedding. Sometimes people buy and send gifts after the wedding so leave it up a few months after your big day.

-Don’t ask for money outright. A better way to ask for money is to tell what it will be used for in advance. This could be for a honeymoon, a down payment on a house, living expenses, charities, or any other number of things.

 

 

 

Booking Your Wedding DJ

Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

DJ’s are typically vibrant and energetic people. Dealing with them may be difficult if you have conflicting personalities or interests. There are a few things that you need to identify before you book any DJ. They are listed below.

Make sure the DJ will only go off of your created playlist

When creating a specific playlist for your reception, you need to be specific otherwise songs that you don’t know or like will be played. It is important to have music tailored to you so that the reception is comfortable and fun.

Have a DO NOT play list

There are songs you do not like. Make sure that you identify which songs cannot be played at the wedding, especially if you allow the DJ to take song requests.

Decide whether or not you want the DJ to take requests

Your guests have favorite songs and some will want to request them at the wedding. If you have a mixed crowd of older and younger people, this could become an issue if one of these groups is more vocal. You want to make sure you’re happy in the end.

How does the DJ get the crowd pumped?

Some DJ’s are very vocal and actively work to make your guests excited and want to dance. Others just let the music do the work. Make sure you understand if they are going to talk the whole time and vice versa.

How far do they travel?

Most DJ’s are willing to travel but sometimes there is a travel fee or a gas fee charged along with their services.

Can you see them at another booking?

Booking a DJ by word of mouth or through their Facebook videos is a little scary. Put your fears to rest by actually going to another event they are working if they will allow it.

What equipment does the DJ use and how much room does it take up?

Every DJ has a different amount of necessary equipment for them to perform. Make sure that your venue is big enough to fit all of their equipment.

What time do they set up and how long do they work for?

This is an important detail because DJs usually charge for their set up and tear down time. You also want to make sure that they can work the duration of your entire event.

At my venue, the dance floor is where we are having the ceremony then we are transforming it to the dance area for the reception. This is an important detail because the reception is immediately after the ceremony. My DJ needs to set up quickly and have a smaller setup so that it fits.

 

Duties of the Maid of Honor

Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

When you are in the middle of planning a wedding, job titles and duties tend to get blurred. It is hard to identify who is in charge of what sometimes. The maid of honor (MOH) is a very important part of making sure the bride stays sane and gets everything done. Some brides are very hands on and some are the complete opposite, so knowing your jobs as a maid of honor is important. Here are a few jobs that the MOH typically does:

Plan a shower and a bachelorette party

The maid of honor’s main duties are to plan a bridal shower for the couple and a bachelorette party for the bride if she wants it. These parties are completely up to you to plan, designwise and monetarily. You typically foot the bill for these unless you ask other bridesmaids to chip in or the bride offers to pay for them.

Keep a record of gifts at the bridal shower

The bride will be pretty overwhelmed with things that she has to do at every event she goes to. Because of this, your job is to make sure she has a list of who gave her what gift. She needs this list to be able to send out thank you notes later.

Go dress shopping

Every bride is different and has a different level of involvement. The MOH may not be invited to go wedding dress shopping but usually is invited to go shopping for bridesmaids dresses.

Prepare a toast

The MOH typically says a few words at the reception or rehearsal dinner about the couple. This is not always the case, and if you are really nervous about it, tell your bride. She will understand and not make you do a toast.

Help the bride with anything she needs

The bride may have you helping you with everything or nothing. If she is having you help with everything, a few of your duties may be addressing invitations, creating a reception playlist, booking vendors, and etc.

 

 

During Your Wedding Dress Appointment…

Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

Okay, so we’ve made sure you have everything in order before your appointment. Now we have to make sure that the actual appointment goes smoothly in the second part of this wedding dress blog. During your wedding dress appointment, there are lots of things to keep in mind and make sure you address. These suggestions will help you to have a stress-free appointment and choose your wedding dress.

Find the best silhouette for your body type.

Before you go crazy with excitement sorting through every dress you see, make sure you identify what works best on your body. Different styles look best on different people so make sure you know your limits and what you like. If you can’t identify this yourself, the person helping you during your fitting will be able to help you. Identifying this will keep you away from dresses that don’t fit and make you exasperated. You will be able to have a more fun fitting if you identify what works best for you.

Realize the top of your wedding dress is important because it will be seen more than the bottom of your dress.

You have one part of the dress that you just want to be perfect, like a low back or a cathedral train, but very few people focus on the top of a wedding dress when they are looking for one. Why? Generally it is the plainest part of a wedding dress, but I would argue that it is the most important part. It is the part that shows up in almost every photo and every close up shot, so why would you want the most photographed part of your dress to be anything less than what it should be? Make sure that from every angle the dress you pick meets your expectations. You should not have to settle for a top that you don’t like if you fall in love with the bottom. Be pleased with everything about your dress so that you don’t regret it later.

Take pictures.

PSA: MIRRORS ARE NOT THE SAME AS CAMERAS.

When you try on every dress, make sure to take lots of pictures from seemingly every angle. Why should you do this? Because the mirror will not tell you what you will look like in your photos. Photos predict photos. Mirrors predict mirrors. You are paying lots of money to have photography and mementos of your big day, make sure that the dress looks good in person and in your photos.

Try on as many dresses as it takes.

It’s OKAY if you have to try on 10 dresses or 20 dresses or however many it takes to find what works for you. It’s also OKAY to go to multiple dress shops to find your perfect dress. Don’t get discouraged if the first couple of dresses aren’t for you. Make sure the dress you choose is your dress!

All wedding dress sales are usually final.

Most bridal shops have final sales on everything in their stores: dresses, veils, shoes, and other accessories. Make sure you are satisfied with what you are buying because if you change your mind later, you will have to spend a lot more money.

Ask lots of questions!

The people helping you find your dress are willing and eager to answer your questions about dresses, designers, and any other related questions you have. It is their job to help you. Don’t be nervous to ask if you have concerns or questions.

 

Finding your perfect dress does not have to be stressful. Go into your appointment with an open mind and allow your assistant and party to help you but don’t lose sight of your vision.

 

 

When Scheduling Your Wedding Dress Appointment…

Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

Choosing your wedding dress is a big decision so you need to make sure you are your best self and prepared when you go shopping. This is the first part of a two-part blog. In this one, I give you suggestions to keep in mind while scheduling your appointment. These will help you to choose your wedding dress with ease and with virtually no stress.

Schedule your appointment earlier in the day.

If you schedule your appointment earlier in the day, you will be more energized and more excited to go shopping. This will be beneficial because if your appointment takes longer to find your dress, you will be more energized and willing to continue trying on dresses. Also, appointments typically take an hour and a half, so it will be a long day anyway.

Keep your party small.

Keeping your party around 2 to 4 people is best. When bringing people along, always remember that everyone has opinions that they think you want to hear. It can be overwhelming and sometimes upsetting if your vision is overshadowed by your party’s vision for your dress. Keeping a party small makes it a less stressful time and allows for you to identify what you want.

Some shops charge for appointments or cancellations.

When scheduling appointments, every bridal shop has a different cancellation policy and appointment policy. Some shops ask for your credit card information to charge you to make an appointment. Others ask for that information to charge you for a cancellation or a no show. Make sure you know what you are paying for when you schedule appointments.

If you have your accessories already, bring them.

Most bridal shops provide undergarments, corsets, and shoes for you to try on when you try on dresses, but some don’t. It is always good to bring your own just in case.

If you already have your shoes, bra, veil, undergarments, or etc., BRING THEM. This is always beneficial because you will be able to see a clearer picture of what you will look like on the big day.

 

Check next week for Part 2!

 

 

 

3 Types of Ceremony Music

Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

While planning your big day, it is easy to forget to book a ceremony music performer. Ceremony music is important to book far in advance because they book up fast. There are not many available either, so look at performers as soon as possible.

There are 3 basic options available to book. These are instrumental soloists, music ensembles, and DJs.

Instrumental Soloists

A single piano, violin, or guitar can be beautiful for a ceremony. It is a simple, cheaper way to have a romantic ceremony. Instrumental soloists are perfect for smaller, simpler weddings. If the venue is small enough, they can even perform without any microphones and speakers. They also do not take up much space, so if you are tight on space this is a wonderful option for you. This is not the best option for outdoor weddings. If you want this and have an outdoor wedding, you need to make sure that you have proper sound equipment so that your guests can hear the music.

Music Ensembles

There are many different types of music ensembles like string groups, duets, and many instrumental combinations. To book an ensemble, you usually cannot piece together the instruments you want. The groups are typically grouped together and booked together. If you want two musicians that don’t normally play together, chances are that they will charge you for rehearsal time. This option is good if you have a larger wedding or if you want a more rich sound for your ceremony. This is also a good option if you have a friend that you want to sing or perform.

DJs

While DJs are not the most popular option, they are definitely a viable option. They also could be potentially cheaper. If you get a DJ for your reception, they might have a package deal where they provide a cheaper ceremony rate especially if your ceremony and reception are at the same location. They also can provide a wider range of ceremony music than soloists or ensembles can. If you want a complicated song performed, some musicians don’t always have the music for it or the capabilities to play it. A DJ is a great option to have a larger selection of music and capability to mold what you want performed.

 

 

Have Your Cake and Eat It Too!

Anna Pope, APSU Junior, Public Relations

There is so much that goes into a wedding cake: flour, sugar, eggs… LOL but really it can become a bit overwhelming when you need to decide what you want and what you need. These sometimes clash and you have to determine which is more important to you.

How Big?

Make sure that your vision encompasses your guests’ needs. You may envision a small 2-tiered or 3-tiered cake but have 200 guests. You may also be on the opposite end and want the super large 7-tier cake and have 200 guests. Each layer serves a certain amount of people so make sure it accommodates your guests. You can also have multiple cakes to serve from or cupcakes. Look up different cake sizes to see what you will need.

What Shape?

There are infinite cake shapes and designs to choose from. Some will fit your design and some won’t. Filtering through this can get a little overwhelming at times. Round cakes are a simpler design and are usually considered elegant. Square shaped cakes are more modern and generally considered sleeker in their design. Scalloped, Heart, and Topsy-turvy cakes are considered unique and can be tailored even more to fit a more casual wedding. These are not the only cake shapes and cake boss type cakes can even be served if you want a unique detail of your life to be expressed through your cake.

What Flavor?

Cake flavors are all up to you and your groom. Traditional wedding cakes are white cakes with buttercream frosting. It is not necessary at all to keep your flavors traditional because there are so many different flavors available to you. If you have a specific flavor in mind, like orange-creamsicle, make sure that the bakery you choose can do this for you before you decide to hire them.

What Toppers?

You can choose from an infinite number of cake toppers but these 3 are my favorites. My first favorite is the sign/banner. It is a simple way to top the cake and can be customized to your names, the date, a phrase that is important to you, and any number of other things. My second favorite is the silhouette of the couple or any bride and groom. It is simple and elegant and can also be customized to your needs. My third favorite is the traditional cake topper models of the bride and groom. These are also simple and can be customized as little or as much as you want.