3 Things Wedding Guests Remember (And Love) About Weddings

Who doesn’t love a good wedding? They’re exciting events with plenty of opportunities to meet new people. Of course, you often bump into a few people you already know! When it’s your own wedding, much of the planning you do is to make sure the day is perfect just for you and your spouse-to-be.

But what parts of your big day are the wedding guests going to love the most? What will they remember about the day the two of you got married?

The Photo Opportunity
We all love the chance to pose for a professional photo! After all, the pros manage to capture the our best sides and make us look extra glam. Plus, we’ve just bought this amazing outfit, and the photo will be a perfect reminder of the day we looked this good! Wedding guests love the chance to be in a photo with the bride and groom. When you choose a photographer, make sure you give them your “can’t miss” shots including the groups and people that you absolutely have to get a photo with.

Why not book a photo booth too? Photo booths offer another opportunity for fun photos of your guests as they’re enjoying themselves at your wedding reception.

3 Things Your Guests Will Love And Remember About Your Wedding - choose a professional wedding photographer Choose a pro for your wedding photos. Picture credit: pexels

Congratulating and Toasting The Happy Couple
We all love the chance to sip bubbly! But it is perhaps the chance to honor and toast something that is good and personal to us that is most important on this day. Whether by a simple “Congratulations! We’re so happy for you!” said directly to the couple, or by a wedding toast for the entire room to enjoy, every sentiment is special for every person in the room. After all, everybody knows the happy couple, and they want to celebrate their love. Of course, free champagne always does taste pretty good.

3 Things Your Guests Will Love And Remember About Your Wedding - Congratulating and Toasting The Happy CoupleToast of bubbles. Picture credit: pexels

The Food
Who doesn’t love a big wedding feast! Chances are the venue you’re booking has their own catering staff and banquet menu. In fact, the food might be the reason you’ve chosen this place! Or you may have a fabulous caterer in mind, and need a venue that will let you provide the food.

Either way, if you’re having a wedding banquet, (regardless of the formality) then you need to plan the menu in advance, from the appetizers to the entrees. Choose foods that are familiar to your guests (you don’t want them wondering what’s on their plate!), but fancy enough for your wedding celebration.

* This is a contributed post

I hope you found this information useful!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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For planning help and unique ideas for your wedding call or text me at 937-581-3647, or email me at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net!

Traveling Guests – Convenient Tips For Wedding Guests Coming From Afar

Traveling Guests - Convenient Tips For Wedding Guests Coming From AfarImage source: Pexels.com

You might be getting married in your hometown, but that doesn’t mean that things will be quite so convenient for some of your guests. That’s especially the case for your traveling guests, especially those who are coming from another state or, in some cases, another country.

Any guests who are traveling to your wedding might be worried about a whole host of reasons. For example, they might be anxious that travel delays could make them late for your ceremony, or they might be concerned about jet lag.

Want to help all of your traveling guests? Read on to find out how!

Think Of The Time Of Your Ceremony

If some of your guests are traveling from another time zone, they might not have gotten over their jet lag before your wedding day. So, think about scheduling your ceremony for the afternoon. That way, they can catch up on their sleep and be ready and alert for your wedding.

Offer Transportation From Airports And Stations

Guests from out of town probably aren’t familiar with your town’s public transport system. So, it’s always a nice idea to provide some transportation for them so that they can easily get from the train or bus station or airport. For a super classy touch, take a look at transportation companies such as http://www.bergenlimo.com/services/ewr-newark-airport-limo-service/ that offer a range of sophisticated limos. Imagine how excited your guests will be when they see a limo waiting to whisk them away!

Traveling Guests - Convenient Tips For Wedding Guests Coming From Afar
Image source: Pexels.com

Provide Information on Hotels

Seeing as your traveling guests won’t be familiar with the surrounding area, they might not be too sure which hotels are worth booking. So do some research on their behalf. That way, you will be able to offer them some tips. You might want to take a look at sites like https://www.premierinn.com/gb/en/book-a-hotel.html (if you’re in the UK) to find out which are the best-priced hotels close to your wedding venue. Also, if your venue offers accommodations, ask if there are any rooms available for guests on your wedding night.

Surprise Them With Gifts

Your guests might be very tired by the time they arrive at their hotel room after all of their traveling, so why not surprise them with a little gift in their room? For instance, some sophisticated toiletries or a box of chocolates will go over really well! If they have traveled really far, from another country for example, you might want to put together a small welcome pack for them. This could include local produce and specialties.

You don’t have to get elaborate, but a little goody bag/gift for your guests will certainly make them feel very welcome once they arrive in town for your very special day.

* This is a contributed post

I hope you found this information useful!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

For planning help and unique ideas for your wedding call or text me at 937-581-3647, or email me at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net!

Sunshine, Rain, and Your Wedding Day

Cloud to ground lightning strikes

Sitting here in my family room listening to the rain. Not a relaxing patter on the window. It is thundering and coming down hard.

I mean HARD!

So hard, that even with a rain coat and umbrella you’d get drenched.

The sun was shining not just 20 minutes ago! It was nice enough to do a little yard work, or sit outside and have lunch.

But now we’ve got a thunderstorm.

“Why in the world is she talking about the weather?” you’re probably thinking.

From weddings held at parks and shelter houses, to backyards, and venues with lovely outdoor settings – outdoor weddings are on the rise. And with outdoor weddings, you’ve got to contend with the weather.

In a perfect world, it would never rain (and the wind would only be a comfortable breeze) on your wedding day.

In the real world, Mother Nature may have other ideas. And it’s not just rain. There may be wind storms, an unusual cold front, or high humidity or a heat wave.

sun

You can’t really combat this (the weather is going to be what it is), but you can plan ahead in case the weather isn’t cooperative. What if you have rain on your wedding day (or other inclement weather)?

Have a “Plan B” for your wedding with an alternate indoor (or appropriately sheltered/air conditioned/heated) site, and discuss this with your wedding coordinator, as other set-up logistics will be affected. Inform your venue manager and other vendors of your “Plan B,” and let them know who the person is who will designate if “Plan B” has to be put in place.

rainy wedding at seashore

Some things to take into consideration:

1) Your other vendors needs
• How long does your florist need to set up? Is she decorating an arch and placing lots of flowers along the sides of the aisle, or does she just have to set down a couple floral arrangements?
• Your photographer, videographer, dj, musicians all have equipment that cannot get wet.

2) The comfort of your guests.
• Will there be high humidity, compounded by guests having to sit in the sun?
• Even if the rain has stopped, has the ground been left so slick and muddy that it is unsafe to walk on?

3) The proximity of the site for “Plan B” from your original site
• Is it close enough to be able to direct guests to the “building on the right” instead of the “clearing on the left?”
• Or will your guests have to drive to a second location?

Most of the time plans go as intended, and here’s hoping that you have beautiful weather on your wedding day. But, have a solid “Plan B” in place, and remember, you’re marrying the love of your life, and celebrating this with your closest friends and family!

just married rain

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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

How to Have Happy Wedding Guests (With 5 Super Easy Tips)

Happy Wedding Guests

happy guests with bride & groom

You’ve invited friends and family to help you celebrate your wedding. If you are like most couples, you plan to feed them, entertain them, and thank them for being a part of your special day.

While the quality of the food and music can definitely make or break their level of enjoyment (no doubt about that), don’t forget the little things that can impact your guests’ experience.

1. Keep your guests informed (before the wedding day).

Wedding guests appreciate being informed of what to expect. Your invitation will give them some clue, but a wedding website is a wonderful, inexpensive (and even free), convenient place to provide further information your guests will want or need.

Look at it from their perspective. Having clear info – locations, directions, time schedule, hotel accommodations, gift registry options, etc. – easily at their fingertips makes it easier for them to participate.

Many couples include a page for guests to conveniently RSVP, and leave comments or questions they may have.

2. Keep your guests informed (on the wedding day).

You’ve shared plenty of info prior to your wedding day. On the big day itself, make sure guests understand what you want them to do with appropriate signage at your ceremony and reception sites.

Guests tend to err on the side of caution. They need that gentle guidance to let them know what we want them to do, such as: yes, please sign the guest book; yes, please take a favor; and don’t forget to turn off your cell phone (you don’t want someone’s phone to start ringing in the middle of your ceremony!).

It doesn’t take a lot of time or money to create signs that are memorable and in keeping with the theme of your event.

3. Plan for a variety of foods available.

Think of your reception dinner as Sunday dinner only amped up a few notches. You don’t have to stick with the tried-and-true – it’s ok to be adventurous – but keep it familiar. Consider guests’ dietary needs, perhaps offer a vegetarian and gluten free options there are any dietary restrictions.

If you are adding a regional specialty or a nationality dish that may be unfamiliar to your guests, explain what it is with elegant tent cards, (remember #2 from above?)

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

4. Add a little pampering.

Your venue will have some sort of restrooms (either with running water, or hand sanitizer station). Pamper your guests with a few extra amenities like hair spray, hand lotion, tissues, band aids, breath mints, and a mini a sewing kit.

5. Smile, and really enjoy your day!

Make sure that on your wedding day you wear a happy face. You have planned a great event, it’s now time to relax and let the good times roll. You’ve done your best, and you have helpers (family, friends, wedding coordinator) to handle the details. So smile and enjoy what you’ve planned.

Smiling and being happy is contagious. It has a “trickle down effect.” If you are happy and enjoying yourself, your guests will feel it and also be happy and have fun.

On the other hand, if your are grumpy and complaining, your guests are going to feel that negativity. They are less likely to have fun, and will probably leave early.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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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!

Photo credit: Jack Hoying

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

happy guests at wedding reception

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 sure you have happy wedding guests, make their experience more pleasant and memorable (for the right reasons!) with the following 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

outdoor rustic wedding ceremony Photo 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).

How to Have Happy Wedding Guests (With 5 Super Easy Tips)

4. Long lines for the bar or restrooms
bar - champagne pyramid 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

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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Wedding Q & A – Can You Bring a Guest to a Wedding If the Invitation Did Not Specify and Just Said "We Request the Honor of Your Presence"?

Q. – Can you bring a guest if the wedding invitation did not specify and just said “we request the honor of your presence”?

A. – “We Request the Honor of Your Presence” indicates what is being done – you (singular and plural) are being invited. The “you” is not the specific indication of who is being invited. That is done by the name(s) listed on the inner envelope.

Bride & Groom Q & A – What Does "M______________" Mean

Whose name (or names) is on the inner envelope? This is where you will see who is being invited, and if a +1 has been extended.

  • If it’s just your name, than no, it is not acceptable to bring a guest.
  • If the envelope indicates another person’s name as well as yours, than you may bring that other person, and only that other person (if said other person cannot attend, you may not “swap out” your +1 and bring someone else).
  • If the envelope indicates “and guest” or some other similar type wording, then you may bring one other person of your choosing.

Photo credit: Bryan Gardner

Do you have questions or are looking for unique 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!

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Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Wedding Q&A – How to Avoid Latecomers to the Ceremony

 

 

 

 

 

 

Q. – I’m worried that we’ll have guests walk in late and take attention away from our ceremony. What can I do to keep this from happening?

A. – In over 20 years, I have yet to see a wedding ceremony where all of the guests have arrived on time. So in answer to your question on how to prevent this. You can’t.

Don’t fret. This is something that can be easily (and politely) dealt with.

Simply have someone stationed at the door to help direct late-comers to quietly seat themselves from the outside aisles. If the outer doors to your ceremony venue are clunky and close rather loudly, have someone assist with quietly opening and closing them.

In all honesty, unless the latecomers are unusually loud, no one will even notice them since all eyes will be where they should be, front and center on you and your fiancé.

If you have a special guest (such as a grandparent, or close relative) that you know is always late to everything, a little white lie can get them there earlier. Simply tell them that you need them to be there earlier than you really need them there. (For example, if your ceremony starts at 4:00 PM, tell them you need them there by 3:30 PM). That way when they run late, they are more likely to actually be on time.

Now I have heard advice from others on this matter saying “don’t be too rigid about starting the ceremony exactly on time.”

I highly disagree. A minute or two is one thing, but who really gets out of the parking lot, in the door and into their seat within 60 – 120 seconds? NO ONE!

Holding back the start of the ceremony 5, 10 minutes or more just to accommodate tardy people is not a reasonable suggestion to give a bride and groom. It’s not fair to the guests who have made the effort to get there on time. You’re potentially looking at paying overtime rates to musicians and the ceremony venue. And if the wedding ceremony doesn’t start on time you’re playing “catch up” right from the very start.

I have also heard others say to put the start time on your invitation a half hour earlier than when the ceremony is to really start.

Again, I highly disagree. It’s not fair to the guests who have made the effort to get there on time (they have to sit around longer while nothing is going on). Your pre-ceremony photos have to end earlier since you don’t want people seeing you before the ceremony. And you’re definitely looking at overtime rates to musicians and the ceremony venue.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Do you have a question or wedding concern? Let me know. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Photo credit: clock via photopin (license)

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Wedding Q&A – Do I Have to Invite Family I’m Not Close To?

 

 

 

 

 

Q – Do I have to invite a family member I’m not close to, to my wedding?

A – It’s your wedding, so technically, you can invite (or not invite) whoever you want.

That said, consider the following:

    • Do you just “not like him,” or does it go deeper than that? Is it because the two of you just “don’t click,” or is there “bad blood” between you?
    • How will this affect future family get-togethers? Will other family members brush it off with a simple “meh,” or will you be hearing about this for years to come?

Do you have a question or wedding concern? Let me know. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

  • How will this affect other family members? Let’s use cousins as an example. Will this cause friction between the 2 cousins you are close to (and who did receive an invite) and the 3rd cousin you didn’t invite? Will it cause friction between you and your aunt? Although, it’s your wedding and you can invite (or not invite) whoever you want, this is most likely a time for you to take the high road and send that other invitation.

Photo credit: The complete set via photopin (license)

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Do you have a question or wedding concern? Let me know. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Bride & Groom Q&A: How Much Time to Spend With Each Wedding Guest?

Q. I’m worried that we won’t have enough time to socialize with all of our guests at the reception, but still have fun too. My fiance and I want to be able to enjoy ourselves, have fun and dance. But we also know that we need to mingle and talk with all our guests too. Any suggestions?

A. Greeting and visiting with your guests at the reception is a wonderful way to show your appreciation to them for coming to your wedding and sharing this special time with you. But with a large number of people involved (according to The Knot, the average number of wedding guests was 138), you don’t want to get caught in “meet and greet” mode and miss out on the party.

So, this is the perfect time to divide and conquer, so to speak.

A few things to ask yourself are:

Who is going to be at your rehearsal dinner? You’ll get a good chance to visit with them at that time, so you won’t need to spend as much time doing so on your wedding day.

Who do you absolutely HAVE to socialize with? These would be the most important people to you – your parents, your grandparents. Also elderly guests who probably won’t be on the dance floor, and other guests who you don’t see very often, especially if they’ve traveled a good ways to come to your wedding.

Who’s going to be partying on the dance floor with you and who won’t?

Plan ahead so that at some point, you’ll have a chance to speak with everyone who took the time to celebrate with you, and still get to enjoy the party.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Do you have any wedding planning questions or concerns? Contact me at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586.

Bride & Groom Q & A – Goodie Bags for Guests

 

 

 

 

Q – I have a lot of out-of-town guests coming for my wedding. We’d like to make up little goodie bags for them, but don’t want to be expensive. Any suggestions?

A – Hospitality bag for out-of-town guests are a wonderful idea to welcome your guests when you just don’t have the time to physically meet and greet them. Use colorful lunch sized bags (found at craft stores), or if you want to get creative, decorate some plain brown or white ones.

Some inexpensive, but fun ideas to include are:

  • Small bottles of lotion
  • Little soaps or candles
  • Snacks — dried fruits, nuts, chocolate — maybe made locally, or home-made
  • Tea bags or hot chocolate packs (hotels often have coffee pots & coffee but forget about us non-coffee drinkers)
  • A little welcome note written on the back of a local postcard

Secure the bag closed with ribbon (fold top over, punch a couple holes and tie ribbon through holes) or use a pretty sticker.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Do you have a wedding dilemma or question you need answered? I’d love to help. Contact me at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586.

photo credit: Salicia via photopin cc