Recent Wedding Planning Posts
We’ve always loved Pinterest for its endless inspiration. And just when we thought it couldn’t get any better – it has!
WeddingWire was one of the first to try out Pinterest’s new Place Pins. With our new Place Pins, we make it easy for you to find local wedding content that inspires, and view the source of your wedding inspiration on a map. Voila! Just like that, finding wedding inspiration online – and making it come to life offline – is a little easier.
We’ve had so much fun curating content for our Place Pins from coast to coast and everywhere in between, and we hope you enjoy exploring them. Visit any of our newest place boards to find inspiration in your area:
Are you a capital area bride and groom? Check out Bo Obama’s picks for the city’s most fetch wedding venues. Getting hitched in a unique locale? Let us take you to some of the nation’s most uncommon venues. We’ve pinned all that and more.
Photo: Rae Marshall Wedding Photography
Many couples these days are proving the “it’s bad luck to see your significant other before the ceremony” superstition wrong. Why? Because ”the look on his face when he turned around was something I’ll never forget,” April, the bride pictured above said. “Plus, it gave us a chance to have a romantic moment before the crowd of people got there.” Whereas, during a traditional walk down the aisle, all eyes are on the bride, and your guests have their phones out ready to Facebook, tweet, or Instagram. What they’re missing is the groom’s spontaneous reaction as he sees his bride being given away. See more first looks that will make you smile here.
Photo by Hearts & Horseshoes Photography
Of course, your guests will attend your wedding to watch you and your fiancé(e) get married. But they’ll also want to celebrate – and eat! When looking for a wedding caterer, you’ll want to make sure that the food both tastes and looks appealing and fits your wedding style and budget. Plus, it’s essential to find a caterer that’s approved by your venue. Check out WeddingWire’s Vendor Reviews to find a caterer near you, and then take a look at these questions to ask a potential caterer.
Are you available on my date? Of course if the caterer is not available on your date, it’s a no-go.
Have you ever worked at my venue before? Some venues only allow approved caterers to work at their site. Whether or not that’s the case, it’s a good idea to find a caterer who is comfortable at your venue, though not a deal-breaker.
Can I see a sample menu? Start by telling the caterer about your wedding – your style, the guest count, how you visualize the food, etc. and ask to see a menu from a wedding that’s similar. You’ll get a sense if you and the caterer are on the same page in terms of style.
Do you allow couples to customize their menus at all? If you have specific requests or dietary restrictions, it’s important to find a caterer that’s flexible. Maybe you’d like to have your grandmother’s green bean casserole recipe served at your wedding. Find out if the caterer would be open to preparing family favorites, if that’s important to you.
Are you licensed? Depending on the state, make sure your caterer is licensed from the health department and for alcohol service.
Can we do a tasting? If so, is there a fee involved? Having a pre-wedding tasting is an important part of the planning process. Find out how the caterer’s tastings work – are they done before or after the contract is signed? What is included?
Will you provide rentals like tables, chairs, linens, etc.? If the answer is no, your venue should be able to assist you with finding a rental company to work with.
What’s your typical ratio of servers to guests? This depends on if you’d having a buffet or sit-down dinner. Usually sit-down dinners will have around a one server to 20 guest ratio or less, while for a buffet the guest count will be higher.
Who will be on site on my wedding day? You’ll want to be sure that you meet the coordinator who will be at your wedding beforehand.
Can you provide a per person price range for an event like mine? While this won’t be exact, it’s a good idea to make sure that the pricing fits within your budget. Note that catering will be one of the biggest expenses of your wedding day.
Photo by Rogue Art Photography
Breaking it down on the dance floor is one of the highlights of the wedding reception, so you want to make sure you’re hiring someone who fits your needs and your overall vision. Considering the wide range of styles and skill sets when it comes to DJs, a thorough assessment is pretty important. Here are a few good questions to ask your wedding DJ before signing on (and to find a great wedding DJ, visit WeddingWire’s vendor reviews):
1. How would you describe your style? Is he the type who likes to talk and engage the crowd a lot? Is he very formal, more laid back, or super energetic? It’s important to get a sense of whether his tone is going to match the vibe you’re going for.
2. How do you work with couples to determine a playlist? Find out whether he has some basic strategies for feeling out his clients’ specific styles and preferences and how he helps customize their experiences.
3. What are your favorite first dance songs? This will give you a good sense of his style and taste and help you determine whether you might mesh well together. If his are all top 10 hits and you’re thinking classics and oldies, for example, it may not be the best fit.
4. Have you ever played at my reception venue before? If your DJ has experience with your venue, that’s a plus. If not, it’s not a deal breaker, but it is important that you set up an appointment to walk through the space together. You want to make sure your DJ knows the layout, is familiar with the acoustics of the space, and is acquainted with a staff member or coordinator, if possible.
5. How extensive is your music library? This one speaks for itself. You want a wide selection!
6. What type of equipment do you use? This will not only give you further insight to his level of experience and skill, but is important to know from an aesthetic and logistical standpoint. What does it look like and how much space does it take up? Does it require special electrical outlets?
7. What does setup and breakdown entail? It’s important to have a basic understanding of this to properly plan in terms of timing and communicating any specific needs or concerns to your venue.
8. Do you have a demo or a recording of a wedding you’ve done in the past that I can see? Watching your DJ in his element will really give you the best sense of his interaction with the crowd, his energy, pacing, personality, style and level of professionalism.
9. Do you work with an assistant or second DJ? Depending on the size of your wedding, having an extra set of hands can be well worth it. This will help everything from setup to song requests run a lot more smoothly.
10. Do you offer any other services? Some DJs offer packages with additional services like video screens and lighting. Depending on the experience you’re going for, having these options available from a single source could be beneficial.
Photo: Marlon Taylor Photography
After getting engaged, most brides turn to blogs (like this one!) and magazines for inspiration, only to quickly feel overwhelmed with all the steps in planning a wedding. All of a sudden, your WeddingWire checklist informs you to set a budget, determine a date, find a ceremony and reception venue, start the guest list, and book a photographer all in just the first two months. Sounds like a lot, right? Our solution — hire a wedding planner! After reading dozens of WeddingWire vendor reviews and narrowing your candidates down, you’re finally ready to sit down for an in-person or phone interview. Have them answer the following questions:
1. How many clients do you have in a year? And the month-of? The answer to this question will tell you how available your wedding planner will be during the planning process. The success of your event relies on their ability to juggle it all, and if they’re booked up around the same time as yours, then it could suffer.
2. How many weddings of my size and budget have you planned? Examples! Find out how long he/she has been in business, the different sizes of weddings he/she has executed, and if he/she has any certifications or degrees that are applicable. Steer clear from those who can’t provide these references.
3. Have you worked with my venue before? Or vendors? Most wedding planners have a list of preferred vendors. Not only will they be able to provide feedback on their services but also scout out discounts too.
4. What’s the costs for your services? Whether it’s full planning, partial planning, month-of or day-of coordination, it can be a simple flat fee or hourly rate. A la carte services can be additional. Be sure to understand what each package includes and exactly what services you need.
5. Do you work alone or with a team? Depending on your guest list, one wedding planner might not be enough. He/she may need help from assistants. Therefore, find out who you would be in contact with.
6. Will you be with us on our big day (or weekend)? Clarify if you want your wedding planner to be attending the rehearsal dinner, wedding, or Sunday brunch. At times, wedding planners can assign someone else from his/her team to run the show. Refer to #5.
7. Can you help us stay on budget? From the beginning, inform your wedding planner of your budget, so they can help keep you on track and stretch it even further. Every penny counts!
8. How do you communicate with clients? Find out how often you should be expecting to communicate with your wedding planner via phone or email.
9. What happens in case of an emergency? No matter how prepared you are, everything happens for a reason, including a postponement or cancellation. A Plan B is a must-have.
10. Can I see a contract? If you’re about to say yes, ask for a contract. Read it carefully and follow-up with any questions you may have. Then, sign, seal, and deliver!