Choosing a wedding planner. (Recycled Post)

Recently, I heard a story from a bride who had a bad experience with her wedding planner. I use the word 'bad' here lightly. I simply think it was a case of misunderstanding. The bride felt she wasn't getting what she needed from the planner. This particular wedding planner is very well established and has raving reviews. She is also extremely busy and isn't the creative type-she's all business. What this bride needed was a planner who had time to go to dress fittings, time to answer questions when family problems arose and someone who understood her creative vision and could help it come to life. Who she hired was a women who is fabulous at logistics and getting the job done quickly, but not much on the hand holding and chats.

Deciding to hire a wedding planner, or coordinator is a big decision and it's not something an engaged couple should take lightly. If you want a planner to help you through the process, more often than not, this person will be in your life for the next year or more. It's important for you to decide what type of planner you want.

Do you need someone every now and then to help you make a tough decision?
Are you the type of bride who wants your planner with you every step of the way?
Do you want someone to help mitigate the family dynamic?
Do you need someone who is all business who only sets appointments and isn't big on creativity?
Do you want your planner to also have design credentials?

With every planner comes a different personality. Don't let the planner's portfolio rule your emotions in this process. You may be interviewing a planner who designed the wedding of the year in your city, but you have to like the person who is going to help you with one of the most important days of your life. Be prepared when you meet with potential planners and ask the questions that are important to you. If you want someone to hold your hand through the process and be there for you daily, you need to let your prospective planner know that. Likewise, if you have strong opinions about what you want and you only need someone to coordinate the details, you may want an entirely different planner than another bride.

Make sure to ask the planner what their approach is when it comes to wedding planning. How often will you see her/him? Talk to her/him? Are they involved in the design or will they turn to an outside decor company? Are they good at DIY elements?

Go into the meeting with your prospective planner questioning whether you want a personal relationship with this person--after all, you will be trusting them with a once-in-a-lifetime event.


Recycle old Christmas cards.

My husband gets tons of Christmas cards from work associates and I am always thinking of ways to recycle the cards after the holiday.

I love this idea from No Biggie. This is a project you can do before you pack away all of your holiday decor. Then next year, they are ready to go.

You can use craft punches, die cut machines or plain ol' scissors. Such a simple and easy way to spruce up your packages next year.


Happy Thanksgiving.

I hope all of you have a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends.


Cute {cupcake} stands.

I saw these on Swanky Tables today and had to share.

I love the idea of using these cute cupcake stands as part of the table setting. They can be used as favors to hold boxes, candles, desserts or place cards. You can also use a few and cluster them to make a cool candle display in a vintage wedding or put little flower vases on them for a bridal shower.


Wedzu: Handmade and dindie wedding goods.

If you're a fan of Etsy, you'll want to check out Wedzu. You will find great handmade and indie items for your wedding such as evening clutches, bowties, stationery and jewelry. As your shopping for all your extra wedding goods, why not consider the small business owner?


Choosing your wedding colors.

{image: Wedding Chicks}

Choosing your wedding colors may seem like a no-brainer. However, there's a lot to consider when deciding on your big day decor.

First, consider the season and location. You should choose your ceremony and reception site before finalizing your color choices. Are you choosing to celebrate outdoors amongst greenery? If so, bright colors can look amazing and add drama, while a softer palette may be more romantic. Are you planning on having your reception in an art gallery? The paintings and art work may bring in all the color you need and you may want to choose a very simple color palette. If you're marrying near the ocean, let nature be your guide. You may want to consider the colors of the sunset or perhaps a nautical theme.

It's also important to consider the color of the carpet, drapes and the built-in decor in the room, such as lamp shades, chairs (if not using chair covers) chandeliers, etc.

These blogs and websites are good starting points for color inspiration:

My Personal Artist
Snippet and Ink
Fashion Trend Setter
Colour Trends
Better Homes and Gardens


Engagement Photos: Alice and Quinn

I want to congratulate Alice and Quinn who got married this past weekend at the Boettcher Mansion in Golden, CO! They were great to work with and their friends and families were especially nice. Wedding photos will soon follow, but I was able to get my hands on their engagement photos from the fab Brooke Trexler and had to share them.

Thank you to Brooke for sharing these and I can't wait to see the wedding photos!


Vendor spotlight: Booth 66

I recently coordinated a wedding for a couple who I swear will have the most wedding photos in history. Okay, maybe not the most, but certainly close. The groom is a photographer, as were many of his friends in attendance. It seemed that every other guest had a fab camera and was shooting away. To top it off, this couple had a photobooth that was a rage with all the guests. It was a chance for the photographers to take their cameras off and jump in, props included. The guests were able to go in the booth as much as they wished, with photos printing out in mere seconds.

At the end of the evening the couple received a jump drive that contained all the photos that were taken in the booth and they had an amazing guest book with fun pictures throughout.

If you are looking for a fun guestbook/favor idea or you just want some kooky photos for your event, check out Booth 66. They are a Colorado-based company, but also have booths in Texas.


Bachelorette party idea.

In the heart of Cherry Creek there's an art studio called, Canvas and Cocktails. It's not just an ordinary studio, though. It's a space where you can take an art class, have some cocktails and socialize. No experience is necessary! The instructor guides the class step-by-step to recreate the featured piece and at the end of the night, everyone takes home art they painted themselves. If you are looking for a unique and creative evening to spend with your friends, this may be the way to go.

Here are some of the featured paintings this month:



Have you heard of The Gilt Groupe or RueLaLa? Both sites offer amazing discounts on designer items. I've gotten fantastic handbags and jewelry deals in the past. Because of my newborn, I've been paying more attention to Zulily lately.

Great news! Now, there's a similar site that's being offered to the wedding industry. Sign up on Wedobo and get discounted wedding-related offers delivered right to your inbox. Recent deals include half-off letterpress thank-you cards, discounted guest bags and jewelry. Unlike Gilt or RueLaLa, you don't need an invitation to join. Have fun shopping!

P.S. If you need an invite to Gilt or RueLaLa, let me know!


Venue Spotlight: The Clocktower

Not too long ago, I had the pleasure of touring The Clocktower located in downtown Denver. It's a relatively new venue for private parties and events. A well known and historical landmark, I have always admired the building's architecture, but had no idea that a fun and funky event space occupied the tower. The space includes five floors, two of which have balconies with amazing views of Denver and the decor is very contemporary and hip. It's also a great place for a rehearsal dinner or a bachelor/bachelorette party. If you are looking for something different and certainly unique, add The Clocktower to your list.


Lookin' good, groomsmen.

Check out these ties seller Toybreaker on Etsy. There are various designs to choose from, including foliage, peacock and bicyle motifs. How stylish would your groomsmen look if they were wearing ties with matching ornamentation?

Seems the seller will also make custom orders.


Napkin fold for Dad's Day.

I recently wrote a post about napkin folds and today I ran across this charming fold featured on How About Orange. What a cute touch for a Father's Day brunch or BBQ. You can also use the design for a dinner with your guy or a boy's birthday party.

If you come across any unique napkin folds, send them my way!


What to include in your ceremony program.

Programs are one DIY project that almost every couple can do to save a little money. But even if you aren't taking on your own program-making project, you'll still have to decide what to include in it. Although programs are optional, they are nice for guests to have while they are waiting for the ceremony to start and for them to use as a guideline for the service. Some guests will want to save your program as a keepsake, so it's a great idea to personalize it and put some thought into how you want it to look and who (and what) you plan on including.

Here's a basic guideline for your content:

  • Names of the bride and groom

  • Date, time and location of the ceremony

  • Specific parts of the ceremony, i.e. service, readings, passages, music (you can personalize this even further by explaining why these specifics are meaningful to you as a couple), if you are having someone conduct a reading, include the name of the person

  • Name of the officiant

  • Names of the bridesmaids and groomsmen--you can also put a small note explaining how you know each person

  • A special thank you to your families and/or guests is always nice

  • If your ceremony location is separate from your reception location, it might be a good idea to include the address and/or directions to the reception, as well as the time it begins

  • It's also a good idea to think about the formality of your ceremony when designing your program and then choose the paper and font accordingly.


    An outdoor affair.

    You may be trying to save money by having an outdoor wedding and not renting a spendy venue. In some cases that may be possible, but here are some extra expenses you'll have to consider when planning an outdoor affair.

    -Table rentals
    -Chair rentals
    -Plates, glassware and flatware rentals
    -Table linens rentals
    -Portable restrooms- you don't want to destroy the home plumbing by overuse on the big day
    -A dance floor
    -A generator-for the musicians and or DJ equipment, extra lighting, etc.
    -Speakers-unless your DJ will supply these
    -Tent-your Plan B in case Mother Nature decides not to play along
    -Permit-check your local laws for gatherings of more than 100 people
    -Parking space-consider having your guests transported in from a larger parking lot
    -A dumpster-if the guest count is large enough

    If you want to throw your soiree in a public place, you may need permits for the following:

    -State park land
    -Private or public gardens
    -Alcoholic beverages on public grounds
    -Fire use (candles, torches, etc)
    -Exemptions from local noise violation laws

    Although there can be a lot more planning involved in an outdoor affair, it may be worth it to have a personal home wedding or a fun, off-beat locale. Look for amazing backdrops like mountain cliffs, a gorgeous city skyline or beneath an old, large tree. Just don't forget the bug repellent!




    (Stacey Adams)

    (David Wegwart)

    (Tim Brown Photography)


    Details, details: napkin folds.

    The menu is planned and the linens coordinated. You've decided on the perfect floral arrangements and finally, your reception decor is coming together.

    One detail you don't want to overlook is the napkin fold. It may seem minor, but this small detail can add so much to the reception decor. Imagine your guests' delight when they sit down and see a perfectly folded napkin that happens to match your theme or help make the color in your flowers pop.


    Material girl.

    For some brides, shopping for the perfect bridal gown is one of the most exciting parts of planning a wedding. If you are going to marry outdoors keep in mind that there are certain gown fabrics that are better for warm weather and humidity.

    It's probably best to stay way from any synthetics. They will stick to your body and trap in heat and moisture. Also consider that beading and appliques may add weight and bulk, which can be uncomfortable in hot weather.

    These fabrics are best for the warm outdoors:
    • Silk
    • Chiffon
    • Organza
    • Tulle
    • Lightweight Satin
    • Shantung
    • Linen


    Who pays for what?

    When you start planning your wedding, one of the most important things to discuss is the wedding budget. How much are you and your fiance able to spend? What do your parents plan on contributing? Are his parents able to chip in?

    The following info can be used as a guide to help you determine what to ask for or how to allocate your families' funds. Whether you follow traditional etiquette or not, this info is also a reminder of the costs associated with a wedding and some of what needs to be accounted for in your budget.

    Who pays for what?

    Bride's Family
    Engagement Party
    Stationery and Postage
    Bride's Attire
    Ceremony Fees
    Ceremony Musicians
    Transportation of Bridal Party
    Flowers for Ceremony and Reception
    Flowers for Bridesmaids and Flower Girls

    Groom's Family
    Rehearsal Dinner

    Groom's Ring
    Make-up and Hair
    Housing for Out-Of-Town Attendants
    Presents for Her Attendants
    Guestbook and Accessories (Cake Knife, Ring Pillow, etc.)

    Bride or Her Family
    Bridal Consultant
    Valet or Parking Fees
    Bridesmaid Luncheon
    Boutonnieres for Fathers and Grandfathers

    Bride's Rings
    His Attire
    Marriage License
    Officiant's Fee
    Bride's Bouquet
    Flowers for Mothers and Grandmothers
    Boutonnieres for Himself and Attendants
    Presents for Attendants
    Housing for Out-Of-Town Attendants

    Bridal Party
    Their Own Attire
    Bridal Shower
    Their Own Travel Expenses

    Need more budget advice?


    Wedding Sale!

    Gilt Group is having an amazing sale on wedding attire this weekend. Click here to see the goods!

    Did I miss anything?

    I love to post inspired ideas and photos from other blogs and the web. I try my best to give credit where it's due, but if I miss something, please let me know. And, if you want something taken down, I can do that. No problemo.