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5 Tips for Selecting the Members of Your Bridal Party

Hello Friends,
Let’s talk about choosing your bridal party. I’ve had many brides and grooms express their many concerns when it comes to this task. It’s not always the easiest thing to do, because there are a lot of emotions and expectations involved. Today I’ve put together a few thoughts I would like to consider before selecting your “tribe.”

1.) The Honor
Who really deserves it? Often time people base their bridal party selections on obligation (well, I was in their wedding, or I have to all of my sisters) rather than selecting people who simply feel right. Really think about who you turn to in times of joy and trouble. Ask yourself who makes you feel special; who do you have fun times with?

2.) The Time Commitment
Being involved with a wedding involves a lot of time. There’s the dress shopping, the fitting, the accessories, the bridal shower, the bachelorette party, the rehearsal ceremony, the rehearsal dinner, of course the wedding day. Really think about whether or not this person has the time to commit. If you’re uncertain, feel free to ask them directly. To some friends, it might not matter how much time is involved, while others it might place great stress upon.


3.) The Expense
Being involved in a wedding can be quite expensive. The wardrobe, the possible travel, the alternations, professional hair and makeup, plus possible requested time off of work. Not to mention gifts along for each celebration….it can be a lot. Again, if you’re uncertain ask your friend and try to best estimate an amount ahead of time to share with them.


4.) The Great Expectations
Really think about whether or not this person will meet the expectations you’ve created in your mind and heart. Are you expecting the members of your bridal to be able to attend all the functions (bridal shower, bachelorette party, rehearsal dinner) or are you okay with them possibly needing to skip some of these times? Will this person be excited and joyful about your wedding day or will they be negative and voice their complaints along the way?
5.) The Fun Factor
A great ingredient to a great wedding day is a fun and active bridal party. Some of the best dance floors are being rocked out by the bridal party. Members of the bridal party feel special, they feel honored, therefore they are more likely to cut loose and have a great time supporting you and your most special day.

8 Questions to Ask When You Are Interviewing Wedding DJs


Lets delve into the entertainment world! What do you want to know when looking for your DJ? Below are 8 questions I recommend asking when you’re interviewing DJs.

1. How long have you been a DJ and how many weddings have you done?
It’s important to make sure that you are hiring a seasoned professional. The DJ has a huge responsibility in the success of your reception. It’s important to make sure that he/she is confident and fully able to provide the exact vibe that you are looking for.

2. Have you played at my venue before?
You’ll want to make sure that your DJ is familiar with your venue. This is important in terms of load in, set up (where the outlets are, what areas extension cords can run through) and how to set up the equipment to provide the best overall sound for the evening. If the DJ hasn’t played at your venue before, that’s okay. Just make sure that he/she is willing to do a walk thru of the venue space prior to the wedding day.

3. Will you serve as my emcee (master of ceremonies) during the reception? Do you have a video of yourself in action that I can see?
Some companies offer djs and emcees separately, while other companies offer a DJ/Emcee service (same person). Make sure that you have hired a “voice” of your evening to handle the flow of all of your important moments: grand entrance, first dance, toasts, cake cutting and all the other special events throughout the night. The next step is to make sure you “like their voice”. They will set the tone for your entire evening and it’s important that you like their style, how they sound on a mic, and handle a crowd.

4. Are you insured?
You want to make sure that you are hiring a legitimate company for your most special day. Because the truth is anyone can purchase equipment and call themselves a “DJ”. It is incredibly important that this company carries business liability insurance, pays taxes, and has insured equipment.

5. What attire will you wear at my wedding?
Don’t be shy, this is a must ask question! Your DJ must be dressed appropriately; all eyes will be looking at him/her from time to time.

6. Can I select my own songs?
Often times DJs will allow you pick up to a certain amount of songs to give them a good feel as what your music taste is like. They might even ask you to provide them with a “don’t play” list. This could contain the Macarena, the chicken dance, or maybe is past “songs” of your old boyfriends and girlfriends.

7. What is included in your services? What are items (if any) do you offer?
Do they provide a set up for the both the ceremony and reception? What about the cocktail hour? Do they bring back up equipment (just in case)? Do they provide their table(s)? Do they offer uplighting? Gobo light? Photobooths, etc?

8. What is the back up plan if you get sick or have a pop up emergency and you are unable to be at my wedding?
Does he/she work with a team? Do they have other professional djs they can call upon that offer a similar style and service to themselves? Has this ever happened before and how was it handled? Be sure that this person has your most special covered in a worst case scenario.



Best Wedding Websites to Share with Your Guests

Recently we were asked by one of our clients, which was the best Wedding Website to use? And let us let you in on a little secret, sometimes us Wedding Planners don’t necessarily have the answers to everything. But when questions like this come up, we always do our research to deliver our best findings to my clients.

For the most part, all of the wedding websites offer the similar features: rsvp section, event schedule area, and a spot to link registries, where they really differ is their customization abilities.

Let’s dig in shall we…..

Websites with a Fee:

Riely Grey ~ (sign-up & wedding website editing is free ~ publishing + sharing = $35/mo or 12 mo. package for 40% savings)

The Details: 40+ gorgeous wedding template design options, multiple color options, personalized domain names, RSVP collection, and the ability  to change your theme anytime after publication.

AppyCouple ~ ( $49 Appy Boutique basic package or $149 Appy Luxury full package - one time payment each) 

The Details: A new alternative to a traditional wedding website, AppyCouple creates a personalized smartphone app for easy access to all things about your wedding.  Users can chose from several design options and the features available within are close to limitless.  Video/photo sharing, guest list and RSVP manager, travel concierge service, customized countdown, multiple language capabilities, access to gift registries, address collection services are just to name a few.  Once created, your app will be available to all your guests as a free download and has the ability to be accessed anywhere even without wifi!

Wedding Woo ~ ($49 year/$69 two years)

The Details: Fully customizable wedding website templates with editable fonts, colors and backgrounds.  Couples can choose to add on fun, interactive "widgets" such as a wedding day countdown, personalized SoundCloud app for wedding music, and Bing Translator services so all guests can feel included.  Other highlighted features include a customizable visual dashboard, domain name, unlimited photo sharing, song request submissions for the reception, and virtual RSVP guest responses.  

Free Websites:

Wedding Window ~ (completely free or upgrade for $14.95/mo or $79.00/yr)

This wedding website service offers 20 free customizable photo themes and 16 free video themes for your website. These templates come with options to add information about wedding day festivities, ceremony details, RSVP service for guests, links to your gift registries, photo albums, guest list information, and a blogging option for the couple to use.  

The Knot ~ (free!)

The Knot is one of the most popular wedding websites that offers 100+ templates with beautiful designs to please every style.  Features within each template include information about the couple, engagement photos, links to registry sites, RSVP features, and a personalized guest book.  PLUS, many of the wedding site designs also come with the option to create matching wedding invitations of the same style through Shutterfly, Wedding Paper Divas, Minted Invitations, and Paperless Post.

Aisle Planner ~ (free!)

This popular wedding planning site now gives couples the option to create simple & straightforward place to share all your wedding details with your guests. 



Websites with a Fee:  "AppyCouple."

After reviewing all of these wonderful websites the paid option that really stood out us was AppyCouple.  Creating a personalized app for the big day is such a creative and unique feature to offer to your guests.  Since we all look at our phones multiple times during the day, having an app that is readily accessible and easy to use like the one offered here has the potential to create more interaction and visitations to your wedding information!

Free Website : "Aisle Planner

Our favorite free website would definitely have to be Aisle Planner! As a J.Starr couple, you will get a wonderful perk in the form of access to Aisle Planner technology and the ability to create your own wedding website.  This is a great feature that lets a couple be connected to the planning process and have access to all aspects of the day


**Special Thank You Contributing Writer & J.Starr Intern: Annamarie Gansheimer

Budget + Guest List Before Venue Selection

The best way for a Bride to completely overwhelm herself is by trying to choose the venue BEFORE she has come up with a budget estimate and the guest list.

That's because looking at venues and getting excited about all the creative aspects of wedding planning is more fun than number crunching and deciding who you like and who you just kinda like.

But believe me as a former bride myself and as a Wedding Planner who has had heart to heart discussions with several brides....I'm telling you...You MUST establish your budget and guests list FIRST.

Ask Yourself These Questions:
(Budget Related) What is your ideal wedding budget?
(Budget Related) What is most important to you? 
(Budget Related) Is it having all of your friends and family there? 
(Budget Related) Is it being able to put a lot into the design and décor?
(Budget Related) Is it being able to have your dream dress?
(Budget Related) Is it being able to have it at the venue of your dreams?
(Budget Related) Is it being able to host a bar for all your guests? 
(Budget Related) What are areas that you're flexible on?
(Venue Related) Where do you want to get married? Location in terms of city and state?
(Venue Related) Will your Ceremony take place in a Church or the same location as the Reception?
(Venue Related) How many guests do you plan on inviting?
(Venue Related) Out of those guests how many do you anticipate actually attending?
(Venue Related) Out of those guests how many are children?
(Venue Related) Out of those guests how many are under 21?

Then ask your Wedding Planner is this a realistic budget?  Your Wedding Planner (hopefully yours truly) will explain to what your options are, where you need to increase and decrease. Your planner will then be able to give you a list of optional venues that match what you are looking for...Your planner will then help you determine areas that you're willing to possibly cut back in order to make room for other areas that are more important to  you.  Your Planner will save you tons of time and heartache (from getting your hopes up on aspects that might not fit into your budget).  Your Planner will be able to help you set realistic expectations and help you start to see the vision of your wedding day more clearly. 


Honest Ways to Alleviate Stress in the Final Stages

(Photo By: Brooke Photography)

Hello Friends ~

Especially those friends in the middle of planning a wedding...

First of all, please allow me to give you a virtual hug and a pat on the back. I understand planning a wedding is hard, it’s time consuming, and it never ends. It really is like having a second job, especially if you haven’t hired a wedding planner. So let’s talk about ways to alleviate some of that stress in your final stages, shall we?

 1. You can skip the cake tasting
It is a fun part of the process, but if you don’t have time, skip it. Request a phone appointment, email over some design ideas that you have, and select your cake flavor without actually tasting them. Chances are they’ll still be delicious, if you’ve chosen a reputable company.

2. Surrender the Party Favors.
Honestly, most of them end up being left on the tables at the end of the night and get tossed out anyways.

 3. Allow the DJ to Select Your Music.
Inform the DJ of the genre of music you like and let he/she do the rest. They know the songs that get dance floors moving.

 4. Let go of the seating chart and paper products.
If you didn’t hire a professional to design these for you (and you were planning on creating these items yourself) let it go. Open seating will be just fine.

 5. Stop looking at Pinterest!
Remove that app off your phone until the wedding day is over. The colors you have chosen are perfect, your dress is perfect, your guest book is perfect. Seriously, please do not torture yourself by flooding your brain with every wedding idea in the world.

6. Ask for Help.
Again, if you didn’t already hire a wedding planner, you still have time. Many planners (myself included) offer a “Final Planning” service. This will save you loads of stress and worry and will be an investment that you will never forget. This is meant to be a fun time in your life, let a professional help you bring this beautiful day to life for you.

Until next week,
Jennifer Starr
J.Starr Stylized Weddings

3 Advantages to Doing a "First Look"

(Photo by Chard Photography)

Today let’s discuss one of the first questions your photographer is likely to ask you:
Do you want to do a First Look (sometimes called a First Meeting) or do you want to do a Traditional Timeline?
What does this mean?
A First Meeting = You see each other before the ceremony in your formal attire.
A Traditional Meeting = You wait and see each other at the ceremony.
What are my thoughts? Bottom line, you must do what feels right in your gut. Yes, there certainly are many advantages to doing a First Meeting but you must be comfortable with this idea.
Advantages Include:

1. Calming the Nerves
Every single wedding I’ve been involved with, always includes lots of nerves before the couple sees each other for the first time. The very moment they set eyes on each other and embrace, you can instantly see the nerves fall away, they relax their shoulders, loosen their smiles, and breath. It’s as if in that moment they remember what it’s really all about.  Often times seeing each other before the ceremony helps the couple to enjoy more of their day because they are relaxed.
2. More time with Family and Friends
Great news, once you’ve done your “First Meeting” you can then take your family and bridal party photos BEFORE the ceremony. This is a huge PLUS. Everyone has fresh hair, make up, attention spans and they’re still SOBER (hopefully).
3.The Golden Light is Spent Just on YOU!
With all of the family and bridal party photos done, this means the Photographer gets to spend a nice chunk of time with you two during the best lighting of the day! Just imagine how beautiful your wedding photos will be! Your family and bridal party will actually get to enjoy the cocktail hour while you get in some alone time together (along with your photographer). Having your VIPS be a part of the cocktail hour definitely creates a better overall energy with all of your guests. Your family will love being able to mingle with all of your guests and your bridal party will definitely appreciate being “off duty” during this time.

Happy Planning
Jennifer Starr

J.Starr Stylized Weddings

3 Small Items Most Couples Forget on their Wedding Day

Photo: Still Life Studios, Bouquet: Wild Child Floral Design

1. Card holder
Yes, something to “hold” your cards (which most likely will contain money). Consider a basket, a bird cage, a decorative box—basically anything that can serve as a holding device to keep all your valuable cards from floating all over your gift table. This doesn’t have to be a tacky white box, it can certainly be something stylish that blends nicely with the rest of your décor. It’s a good idea to assign a family member or best friend to look after this item.

2. Specialty pens
Consider what type of pens you would like your guests to use for signing your guest book (or guest book alternatives). Couples often spend time and money on beautiful keepsake materials but forget about the pens, guests often end up having to use a ball point pen from the resort’s front desk.

3. Remove all the wrapping and price tags
Remove all the wrapping/packaging and price tags ahead of time. This will save you, your wedding planner, or the catering staff tons of precious time on the day of your wedding. Consider these items and anything else you might have incorporated; photo frames, favor boxes, unity candle, champagne flutes, dress, jewelry, garters, etc. Have all of your personal items “show ready."


Until next time,
Jennifer Starr
J.Starr Stylized Weddings

Biggest Regrets Couples Have After the Wedding

Photo: Still Life Studios

Hi Friends,
Let’s talk about regrets, uggh such a sad word but yes regrets do happen after the wedding day. I’m thankful for those couples who have shared their regrets with me so that I can share with you today in hopes that you DO NOT end up having the same ones!

Not eating any food
Sounds silly right? But it’s not. Couples get so caught up in the momentum and excitement of the day, that they don’t eat much, if at all. The truth is a wedding day is exhausting mentally, physically, and emotionally. It’s very easy to start feeling ill if you’re under-nourished. I always encourage couples to be sure and eat a good breakfast and lunch, even if you don’t “feel hungry”. It’s imperative that you keep your energy up.

Getting wrapped up in small things that don’t matter
There are a million details that go into a wedding day. Chances are one or two things may not go exactly as you had planned. The cake may end up looking different than you imagined, maybe your sister is running late and holding up photos… whatever the case may be, try to relax. You only get ONE wedding day, don’t let little surprises ruin your day.

Not hiring a videographer
The day goes by so incredibly fast. And while the photos help to tell the story, video captures an entirely different way of storytelling. Having video captured of your most treasured times is truly invaluable. Being able to hear voices, laughter, see emotions and movement are beautiful memories.

Not having a moment to take it all in
If at all possible be sure to “plan” for this moment. Request to step into your reception space before the ceremony. Walk thru the room, look at the all the fine details, peek out at the crowd of guests awaiting your entrance down the aisle.

Not hiring a wedding planner
It truly breaks my heart when I hear brides say “I barely saw my mom the entire day because she was so busy coordinating the day and setting things up”. This day is not only special for the couple getting married but also for their loved ones. Hiring a professional to ensure that all your special moments are carried out the way you dreamed, is the best investment you can make for your wedding.
Until next time,
Jennifer Starr J.Starr Stylized Weddings

3 Tips for Regaining Control When You Feel Overwhelmed with the Planning Process

Photo: Still Life Studios

Dear Lovely Couples Planning a Wedding,

You deserve exceptional service, period. I often hear couples say that they’re afraid to ask vendors a question, nervous to speak up and express an option, or hesitant to request a change.  I’m here to tell you, that’s nuts! Please remember that just because wedding planning details can become overwhelming and sometimes intimidating doesn’t mean that you’re not in charge. Here are three things you can do to regain control when you’re feeling lost.

1). Review you Wedding Checklist
Sometimes just simply checking items off of your list (physically checking off, with a paper and a pen) can reassure you that you are getting things done.

2). Consult an Expert
If you’re feeling unsure about a specific area, ask a professional (that specializes in another area) for their opinion. Vendors love to offer their suggestions and know a lot more about other areas of the industry than you might think. An example: If you feel uncertain about some of the ideas/activities that your DJ presents to you, ask your photographer for their opinion. Photographers have been a part of multiple receptions and will definitely give you honest feedback.

3). Take a Minute
If you don’t like something, that’s okay. Trust your gut. Don’t feel pressured into making decisions on the spot. If you need time to think over something (for example “First Meeting” vs. “Traditional Timeline”) that is okay. Your hired vendor will respect your uncertainty and should allow you time to think over your options.
Until next time,
Jennifer Starr, J.Starr Stylized Weddings

Things That May Alarm You When Planning Your Wedding (Part Two)

Photo: Still Life Studios

A Bridal Party Member drops out
It happens, it happens all the time. Try not to let this upset you too much. Being in a wedding is a big commitment, time wise and financially. Just because someone can no longer be involved, doesn’t mean that they don’t love you and cherish your friendship.
Having Equal Party Members
Remember, your bridal party “numbers” (amounts on each side) don’t have to be equal. There are no set rules. It is much more important that you do what “feels” right, it is not necessary to worry about what you think will “look” right.
Rain in Forecast
It doesn’t happen often, but when it does it can really rock a couples’ world on a wedding day. This is why it’s extremely important to always make sure that the venue you choose has a contingency plan for bad weather. Try and keep this in the back of your mind while planning. Sometimes “indoor” spaces can look quite romantic, especially with the rain falling outside. Just know at the end of the day, you can only control so much. Your day, becomes your story.
Being Over Budget
I’ve never once heard a person say, “oh wow, planning a wedding is less expensive than I thought it was going to be.” Weddings are expensive and there are a lot of expenses that pop up along the way. It is critical to lay out your budget ahead of time before you book anything. This will save you a lot of time and heartache along the way.
Until next time,
Jennifer Starr, J.Starr Stylized Weddings

Things That May Alarm You When Planning Your Wedding (Part One)

Photo: StepOnMe Photography        Venue: Grayhawk Golf Club

Allotted Hours on Property for Set Up:
                  It’s an industry standard that most venues allow your vendors to arrive and set up two hours prior to the start of the ceremony. Yes, it’s true. It sounds like a minimal amount of time, but remember you’re working with professionals who set up events every single weekend. They know how to set up a room like well-oiled machine. This includes not only the venue, but also the florist, the dj, etc. This is the case when you’ve truly hired professionals. This only becomes problematic if you’re attempting to go the DIY route.
(A great reason to hire a Wedding Planner!)
Catering Managers Leaving:
                  Yes, it’s true. While yes you have a contract with the venue, you don’t have a contract with a person. It is common for catering managers to transfer properties, have babies, and even leave the industry. This can often times be upsetting when you learn “your person” is no longer going to be at your venue.
(Another great reason to hire a Wedding Planner!)
Your Officiant Not Attending Your Ceremony Rehearsal:
                  This is very common. Often times officiants will charge an additional fee if you want them to attend your rehearsal. But don’t worry, it’s not necessary to go over your entire ceremony, in fact in my opinion this takes away from the wedding day. The most important part of a ceremony is the lining up, walking in, standing in the right place, and walking out. These are things that your officiant is not responsible for doing.
(And again another great reason to hire a Wedding Planner!)
Until next time,
Jennifer Starr, J.Starr Stylized Weddings

The Real Reasons Planners Want You to Hire Their Preferred Vendors

Photo: Ben & Kelly Photography       Floral: Avant-Garde Floral Design

When a planner gets the chance to work with vendors that they’ve worked with before it definitely creates great synergy, not only on the wedding day but throughout the entire wedding planning experience.
As a planner, you have to trust in an entire team (venue, photographer, florist, dj, etc) to do their job correctly on the wedding day. If something goes wrong it’s a reflection on the planner regardless of the situation. Not only is it a reflection, it is also the responsibility of the planner to then “fix” the problem on the spot the day of, making things behind the scenes very stressful. This is a huge source of concern when a planner goes into an event without established trust for the other vendors.
Shared Styles
A planner is going to select their preferred vendors based on similarities. This is in regards to their artistic abilities, their communication styles, and usually their experience levels. These shared styles then blend together very nicely to create an overall aesthetic look and feel.
Until next time,
Jennifer Starr, J.Starr Stylized Weddings

What to Ask During Your Entree Tasting

Let’s talk Entrée Tastings....

Often when you have booked a venue or a catering company, a complimentary Entrée Tasting is included. This is your chance to come in and sample the cuisine options for your wedding day and make your culinary decisions. This can often be a confusing time, so let’s dig in:

Photo: Still Life Studios


Q: How many hors d’oeuvres should we choose?
A: For a full cocktail hour, industry standard suggests five to six pieces per person.
Q: What is the difference between butler-passed hors d’oeuvres and a stationary display?
A: Butler-passed hors d’oeuvres are hand-passed and presented to your guests. Stationary displays are presented on a table that allows guests to help themselves.
Q: Can we offer both butler-passed hors d’oeuvres and stationary displays?
A: Absolutely! It is very common to offer both.

Q: What is a hosted bar package?
A: A hosted bar is when you pay a per person/per hour price for drinks.
Q: What is a hosted on consumption bar?
A: A hosted on consumption bar is the same as running a tab – as guests order drinks, they are then added to the total bill.
Q: What is a cash bar?
A: A cash bar is when your guests purchase their own drinks on a cash/credit card basis.
*Please note bar options can differ from property to property depending on the type of liquor license that they have.

Prior to attending your tasting, you’ll need to know a few things...

  • What is your required Food and Beverage Minimum (your contract should included this figure)
  • How many guests will be attending (best estimate)? Out of those guests, how many will be 2 and under? (Typically they are free) and how many are between the ages of (2 & 12) typically they qualify for kids pricing.
  • Go through your list and determine how many of your guests will be drinking alcohol.

Additional Questions to Ask:

  • Will there be a tip jar at the bar?
  • Will your staff pour wine or champagne during dinner?
  • What Vegetarian options do you offer?
  • What do you offer for children’s meals?
  • Do you charge a cake cutting fee? Will your team cut and serve our cake?

This portion of the planning process can be a bit overwhelming. Remember if you’ve hired a wedding planner, consider asking them to attend the Entrée Tasting with you. Otherwise try your best to really study the menu options ahead of time and don’t be shy to ask your Catering Manager or Chef many questions during the tasting.

3 Biggest Misconceptions About Hiring a Wedding Planner

1.) "I don't think I need a Wedding Planner."
 "I think I'm a fairly organized and creative person...I can plan my wedding and whatever I can't do on my own, I have friends and family to help."

Everyone needs and most importantly deserves a Wedding Planner. A Wedding Planner is the central nucleus of your Wedding Day. Without one, there is no guarantee that your wedding will run as smoothly as it would with a Wedding Planner. Plus, you want to enjoy every minute of that day. You don't want to spend your day answering questions from vendors or family members or guests.  An experienced Wedding Planner has planned hundreds of weddings and that wisdom is invaluable. Your family and friends also deserve to enjoy the day and not running around stressing about every detail.  Let the expert take great care of all of you. 

2.) "I can't afford a Wedding Planner."
"Weddings are expensive enough, why would I spend more money hiring a Wedding Planner?"

While Wedding Planners can be expensive, you will never regret the investment.  Wedding Planners will often times save you immense amounts of money in the long run.  Planners are well aware of the average price of all vendors and all things wedding related.  They can advise you on making wise decisions and educate you and your choices and options along the way.

3.) "I'm afraid a Wedding Planner will take over my Wedding".
"I want our Wedding day to be our vision, not someone else's."

A Wedding Planner will only help to best enhance your vision and serve as a huge resource.  Wedding Planners can help you to funnel through all your many ideas and stay on track so that you don't become buried and overwhelmed in all the details. 


5 Common Misconceptions When Planning Your Wedding

Photo: StepOnMe Photography

1. That you have to please every person.
This is a tough one. It happens to every couple planning a wedding. The moment when you realize that you can’t please everyone, it’s just not possible. This occurs when you’re choosing your date, venue, bridal party, color scheme, wardrobe, and when making plans for your bridal shower & bachelorette parties. It’s always nice to be considerate of your family and friends, but the bottom line is this is your wedding. Make choices that will make you and your spouse happy.

2. Overestimating the size of the ballroom you will need per your guest count.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked into venues with couples and discovered that they’ve chosen a space that is way too large for their guest count. Having a room that’s too large can very easily kill the energy and mood of your entire reception. Ever wonder why dance clubs are small? This is why. People want to feel cozy and not on display. A ballroom that has large gaps between the tables, and a giant dance floor leads to very low energy as guests feel intimated and too awkward to converse with other tables or get on the dance floor.

Photo: StepOnMe Photography

3. Couples often miscount the number of invitations needed.
Remember every person on your guest list does not receive an invitation. Many of the people on your guest list are couples or families, you only need to order one invitation per household. This is a big money saver.

4. Underestimating the timing of your guests.
This is especially important if you’re planning for your ceremony and reception to be in different locations. For example, if you’re having a church ceremony often the church will require you to have your ceremony early in the day and typically couples don’t want to start their reception until later in the afternoon/early evening. It’s unrealistic to think that your guests will go back home after the ceremony. It’s very common that your guests will go straight to the reception following the ceremony. This can be problematic for the venue, as your guests will be arriving too early and the venue will not be ready to start serving them yet. In these types of circumstances, you’ll need to plan for something for your guests to do during the window of time in between.

Photo: StepOnMe Photography

5. Knowing what you’re doing during the entire planning process.
Couples become overwhelmed very easily. They often think that planning a wedding will be a simple process. They find themselves frustrated when they don’t understand things and have questions. Remember it’s okay not to know everything, it’s a lot of information and a lot of components. That is why it is important to hire professional vendors, they will guide you through this process.
Until next time,
Jennifer Starr, J.Starr Stylized Weddings