7 Lessons of Wedding Day Wisdom
It’s 2016 Ladies and officially we are still within the throws of engagement season, which will continue until Valentines Day. We hope one of your Christmas presents allowed for you to sport a new flashy ring of hope to solidify your blessed love for one another on your dreamy day. Or perhaps you are anticipating a special night out soon during “Love season” to hear those too familiar enchanting words, “Will you marry me”? from your handsome beau. Either way if you have begun visiting innumerable wedding inspiration sites and building your Pinterest boards with dresses, colorful cute pictures of brides and their beaus, trendy new ideas for place settings, and the hottest new venues offering endless possibilities for décor and ambiance…and entertainment.. you must have entertainment for your guests! You want family and friends to talk about your fabulous wedding extravaganza for decades to come!
But what would you rather hear, your family and friends talk about over the next several years…the fabulous Cirque Du Soleil like entertainers you hired to perform at your reception, the DJ’s techno light show, the signature top shelf cocktails, or how in love you both still are as you were on your wedding day and how you both pulled through some low times but still remained strong and in love for so many years of your marriage. Believe me I’m not trying to bum you out over planning the wedding of your dreams, I’ve been there, but I learned a few lessons along the way, which I’d love to pass along to future beautiful brides.
LESSON 1 THE LIST FROM HEAVEN OR HELL
Do not get caught up in trying to make your wedding the event of the millennium. Center your beautiful day on your man and you. After all, you are marrying each other not your guests. Your guests have the sheer honor of being witnesses to you both vowing your love for each other under God and they are there to share in the love that you both feel for one another. Don’t go insane breaking the bank to find obscure entertainment to keep your guests occupied for the evening. Remember they are only there for three things, to see you both say I do, and to eat and drink the evening away. So keep your guest list simple and only remember to invite family and friends who love and care about you enough that if you decided to have your wedding at a local McDonald’s with a supermarket wedding cake, they would be there with bells on because they love you and their entertainment will be the absolute joy in seeing two people they love begin their journey together as husband and wife.
LESSON 2 TO THEME OR NOT TO THEME THAT IS THE QUESTION
Examine yourselves and think about what you both like to do for fun and incorporate that into your wedding somehow this will give you a start as to a theme if you want one for your wedding day. If you like the outdoors, then search out parks, farms, or vineyards or NJ beaches, which will allow events. Since the beautiful Spring and Summer weather will be here in a few months, its imperative that if you do choose an outdoor event space that you research the town’s ordinances on serving alcohol and noise if you are hiring a dj or band and that you secure the right permits. You want peace of mind when your day comes that there are no surprises of having your stunning event shut down by the Men or Women in Blue. Plan your wedding day around themes that are fun and light-hearted which you both can contribute ideas to and make your day personal. Don’t include so make crazy segments and details that it quickly morphs into a bad off Broadway musical.
LESSON 3 IT’S ALL ABOUT THE BEJAMINS
I’m sure that you have read this or have been told this a million times, but it’s crucial, MAKE A BUDGET! And stay reasonably close to it. Every wedding day is usually an 8-12 hour day. But only 30 minutes-1 hour is your ceremony and your typical reception generally runs 4-5 hours. You want to make sure that you are a part of every detail that you invested into those hours and not plan this event just for your guests, but that you both get to enjoy it as well. Make your event bride and groom friendly. Have a plan with your vendors that you both don’t miss a single second of what you paid for after all; the party is to celebrate you and your new hubby! Also do not begin Holy matrimony in debt for your wedding. Remember it’s just a party to celebrate your journey; you would not mortgage your house to throw a Super Bowl party for friends and family (Or maybe some fans would lol). Set realistic desires for your day and look for bargains and by all means DIY for flowers & décor if your budget is limited.
LESSON 4 VENDOR VODOO THAT WE DO SO WELL
Wedding Vendors are service professionals, which you will hire for your special day. If you hire a wedding planner, it is imperative to get reviews and ask them for at least two client referrals who you can contact to find out their experience with them in the planning process. Again remember this is YOUR wedding so don’t let them lead you down the path to a wedding day filled with details that don’t represent you or your fiancé’ as individuals or as a couple. Wedding planners can take the stress out of organizing your event, but they can be pricey. If you are an organized DIY girl or if you have a very close friend or sister who can follow out your wishes and keep you on tract with hiring your vendors with your approval then save your money and be your own wedding planner, after all again I reiterate its your party so you design it how you want.
LESSON 5 PHOTOGRAPHY AT IT’S FINEST
Other service professionals you will more than likely hire, caterers, florists, DJ/Bands, Limo services, Make-up Hair Artists and most importantly Photographers/Videographers. I say the most important vendors are your Photographers because yes with Smart phones and Go-pro’s you will get some unusual funny footage from your day, but your wedding pictures will not be a reflection through the eyes of a professional visionary with a camera who will capture every moment when you or your guests are not looking and make certain your lighting and hair are free of dark shadows and human imperfections. You want the true vivid color to come through and shine in every photo because the settings and extra fill lighting your professional photographer were using compensated for that bad fluorescent lit hallway or dimly lit church aisle. Yes it is imperative to hire a professional photographer because you will invest financially and time wise into your day and you want to know what it looked like through every shot in true realistic color and exposure. Every photograph should allow you to relive that day and see through his or her camera the emotion, ambiance and feel of what you and your fiance', family and friends experienced on your day. Many brides and their grooms assume professional photography is just point and shoot for a few hours, so why pay well for one. Your photographer's job is constant non-stop physical work for 8-12 hours carrying heavy equipment, adjusting to light, exposure and temperature of each environment they are shooting you in, staying ahead of every second of your day not to miss the beginning of your journey, looking out for details such as wardrobe malfunctions and having a constant roving eye for those special moments you will never notice or experience until you receive your images weeks after your wedding event. Then there is post-production work, spending hours pouring over thousands of your images after your 8-10 hour wedding day choosing which shots show you in the most flattering imagery and perfect light and then processing them to perfection. It’s when you receive your final images that you will truly see your wedding come to life for the first time. It is for these reasons that your photographer should be the one vendor you carefully choose and book them in advance at least 5-8 months before your event. DO NOT wait till the last few weeks prior to your event as though they were an after thought, you could end up hiring someone who will take financial advantage of you booking last minute or you may find a hard time finding a photographer available especially during peak times of April-October. It is imperative that you are comfortable with who you are hiring. It is also important that your photographer be insured for your event, (venues often require all vendors on their premises be insured). Note: we are always insured for every client's event. Engagement sessions are perfect for getting to know your photographer and being able to truly see their work.
Engagement photo sessions really give you a true review of a photographer's dependability, professionalism, character (who want’s to work with a dry stick in the mud!), and how they photograph you and your fiance'. Do not assume that just because a professional photographer has umpteenth reviews on every social media website known to man this is not a sure guarantee they are a good fit for you and will represent you well on your wedding day. Interview your photographer after all they are applying for a job and if you feel confident and comfortable with them and they are willing to work around your budget, hint such as we are :) then do not hesitate to contract with them.
LESSON 6 GET IT IN WRITING OR ELSE
Contracts are very important, be certain to get everything in writing and be certain the contract is written with the terms that you both agreed on and this should be applied to ALL vendors you hire. Be certain you are clear on dates when balances are due and that you receive a receipt from every deposit you make. Make photocopies of every receipt of financial transactions you make regarding every aspect of your wedding and keep a hard copy in a secure folder somewhere accessible. Don’t just depend on Snapshot photos and smart phone text receipts we may live in a semi virtual world, but we know technology can break down or make things disappear and you want to always have a backup on good old fashioned paper in case any problems arise.
LESSON 7 BRIDEZILLAS DON’T REACH THE ALTER ANY FASTER
Last lesson of the beginning of your 2016 wedding planning year, have FUN! Again I can’t emphasize enough it is you and your future husband’s party so act like it. If you have to fight over any aspect of your wedding day, rest assured you don’t need it to get married. Weddings should not be stressful. Remember you don’t need flying monkeys and trapeze artists to say I do. Don’t make your wedding day complicated. Treat family members, friends, and yes even your hired professionals who are looking out for you on your special day as you would want to be treated, with respect and humbleness and you will find that you will have the best wedding day ever! But, the most important aspect of your wedding day is that you are both present on your anticipated day alive and well and ready to walk that Aisle, ask for God’s blessing as man and woman and start your path to a fulfilled lifetime together with the love of your life!
-We hope to have the honor of following you down The Aisle and presenting you with a storybook visual journal of your Wedding Day!
Next Week January 17th Ideas for Rustic Wedding Venues in NJ