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#OurDayNotYours #WeddingsUplugged

Unplugged Wedding

Even Real Time is almost too late. Technology and social media has enabled us to expand our reach and it has it’s advantages.  However, when it is not used properly and with permission, it could turn what is supposed to be one of the happiest days of your lives, into a nightmare.

Being proactive and making a decision about if you will allow guest to use cell phones and social media during your wedding ceremony has now become a norm to manage when planning a wedding.  It seems like no big deal, until the Maid of Honor posts a picture of the Bride in her wedding dress before the wedding…while the Groom is a few rooms away passing time on social media and sees the picture that she posted.  That’s a No-No!

Unplugged: Disadvantages of Using Technology & Social Media at Your Wedding

  1. Be Present!: Your guest are so distracted trying to record the moment that they miss actually “being presence” for it. Don’t feel guilty. Be excited about them not being distracted, but able to clap, laugh, cry, and simply share in the moment, instead of clicking and posting.  You can also include a note in the ceremony program that reads something like this:

    Thank you for taking the time to be witnesses of our vows and the beginning of our marriage. We invite you to be truly present at our ceremony, and respectfully request that all cameras and phones be turned off. Please feel free to share photos at our reception only. Please use hashtag #Mr&MrsPowerCouple

  2. Excuse Me: Everyone wants the best angel.  If they have it, then that means that your grandmother missed it, because they were blocking her view.
  3. Money Shot: You pay a professional to get the money shots!  Empower them to ask your guest to be seated if they get in the way.  You would hate to have the back for cousin Pete’s head in the middle of “you may now kiss your bride!”

Plug In & Turn Up: Advantages and Ways to Maximize the Use of Technology & Social Media

  1. #HashTag!  Go all out!  From the save-the-date announcement through the honeymoon, create a hash tag and ask your guest to use it every time the post something.  This will allow you to search and remember the day while relaxing on the beach or by the pool on your honeymoon.
  2. Talk About It!  Communicate the rules desires to your guest prior to the wedding.    Talk about it on your wedding website, Put it in the program, have the Hostess announce it as people come arrive, and even have the Officiant make a brief announcement.
  3. They Were There?: The day will go by so fast! We used to use disposable camera for this reason, but now everyone has a high definition camera in their pockets.  Allowing your guest to talk pictures and post them, provides a perspective that you would not have experienced otherwise.

Whichever works for you, with a little planning and communication, you can incorporate technology into your #EpicDay or request that your guest to remove all distractions to be present for one of the most intimate moments of your life.

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15 Secrets from a Wedding Planner (Better Homes & Gardens)

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15 Secrets from a Wedding Planner (Better Homes & Gardens)

The Wedding Planning Cycle

According to Victoria Canada, of Victoria Canada Weddings and Events, brides typically go through five phases over the course of the engagement.

Phase One: ENGAGED! You buy every magazine out there and become overwhelmed with the prospect of all the colors, ideas, and other choices.

Phase Two: The planning process starts. It’s fun! Your friends and family are interested. Strangers in line at the grocery store know you’re getting married and before they leave the checkout they know your colors and number of bridesmaids. The whole world is happy for you!

Phase Three: Anarchy in the ranks. Why does your mother think hydrangeas aren’t appropriate? Why do your bridesmaids think they can pick out their dresses?

Phase Four: The wedding wall. “I have plenty of time, the wedding is months away.” You believe things will all work out, you just need a break from the planning for a couple of weeks.

Phase Five: “Oh my gosh! The wedding is almost here!” You panic that there’s not enough time to individually hand-stamp all the cocktail napkins or make all the favors! Help!

The following tips tips from, Victoria Canada, can keep you from becoming overwhelmed.

Remember What’s Important

Your fiance, family, and friends. Focus on why you’re getting married. You’ve found the love of your life and the wedding is a celebration of you both. That being said, you want it to reflect your fabulous style and taste, so the next tips are for you.

Set a Budget

Budgeting isn’t romantic, but you want to start your marriage off on the right foot — not buried in credit card debt. Create a realistic budget, then find that one item you want to splurge on — flowers, photography, or some Hi-Def Videography.

Think Outside the Box, but Be Practical

Out-of-the-ordinary locations can be undiscovered jewels. Just remember some of the hidden planning that can be involved. For example, with an outdoor venue what happens if it rains? Is there power available? What are the noise restrictions?

Be a Girl Scout

Their adorable motto holds true to weddings: BE PREPARED! Make a little box of the necessities you will need on the wedding day: fashion tape, a needle and thread, deodorant, safety pins, bobby pins (all colors), a pen and paper, flip flops, and extra cash and checks — just in case.

Put Pen to Paper

Just like any other bill, all of your vendor contracts should have due dates with the amount due. Write them on your calendar and mail them a couple of days early. Many contracts become void if payment is not received on time. You signed the contract, so it is your responsibility to make sure they receive it in a timely manner.

Toast Before the Wedding

If you’re not getting married in a church and you’d like a relaxed feeling at your wedding ceremony, serve your guests champagne BEFORE you dazzle them walking down the aisle. If you would rather go the nonalcoholic route, try lemonade, ice tea, coffee, or hot chocolate if it’s a bit chilly. It really makes a statement.

Be Nice! Really Nice!

As a wedding planner, I’ve seen it all. I’ve had clients who constantly call on my only day off (or on Christmas or Mother’s Day); they get a little obsessive and start to worry me a bit. Remember to treat your vendors with respect. If you treat them like you hired them for their services, they will give you exactly what you paid for. But if you go out of your way to send a thank-you during the planning process, vendors appreciate it and will give you the above-and-beyond treatment when it comes to your big day. I have had photographers stay an hour later than contracted for free, because they just loved the couple.

Don’t Make Up “Filler” Jobs

Okay, here is another gem. Your cousin — you know, the one you see once every five years — doesn’t want to stand at the guest book and watch people sign all day. Let Cousin Mary enjoy the ceremony and maybe catch the eye of a cute usher!

An Inventive Guest Registrar

A great way to involve your guests is to have a Wish Jar. Guests write you a wish that you open and read on your first anniversary. This is more heartfelt than a name in a book. All you need is a jar, paper, a sign explaining what to do, and plenty of pens. It’s a great way to keep guests entertained during cocktail hour. Dress up a table with some flowers and a candle and you’re set.

Avoid a Seating Disaster

If you’re having a wedding without assigned tables you need to have 5 percent extra seating available. Not all of your guests will sit in perfect little pairs or all of the single people together. So if you have a wedding of 200 people, you’ll want to have enough seating for 210. This buffer will save you some headaches.

Put Your Money Where It Counts

I just attended an event that had beautiful table linens and bare chairs. By bare, I mean the standard banquet chair. For a more complete look, skip pricey linens and order the less expensive linens and chair covers.

Keep Your Guests Sustained

A new trend, and one of my favorite tips, is the late- night buffet. Most of the older folks will leave after the cake, but the young kids will surely appreciate having to avoid hitting the drive-thru on the way home from the reception. Why not serve them some comfort food? Try chimichangas and tacos or sliders and onion rings, or French fries. The younger crowd will rush this table!

Don’t Forget to Tip

Tip vendors that have gone above and beyond. If you met with the band every month for a year or asked your wedding planner to revise your itinerary 11 times and they did it with a smile, a tip may be in order. If it’s in their contract to revise the itinerary 11 times, or to meet with you once a month, think again. On wedding day if you don’t have a wedding planner to hand out the tips, put them in envelopes, write the vendor’s name on the outside (for example — Jodi, Band), and give them to a sober and responsible family member.

All About Organization

Number the back of your reply cards in pencil before you send them out and correspond them to the guest list. This will make it easier to figure out who’s coming to the wedding if people forget to put their name on the reply card.

Never Assume — Put It in Writing!

Never assume the groomsmen will be on time to the photos. You’ll need to tell all involved when to arrive dressed and ready for photos. Make sure you allow some time if someone is running late. For example, if you are starting photos at 5:00, tell them to arrive at the church at 4:40. Oh, and don’t let the cat out of the bag that this is not the “real” time.

Transend the Traditional: Unconventional Registry Ideas

ReBlog: Transend the Traditional: Unconventional Registry Ideas

How many other brides out there only registered at the conventional retail stores for their wedding? I wish I would have gone a more unconventional route in the beginning, but it’s never too late to give your guests other gifting options!

Here are 10 unconventional registry ideas I found while giving my registration page on a website a nice uplift!

1. Honeyfund – Register for all things related to your honeymoon…Things like a romantic dinner, surf lessons, activities in the area. Let your guests feel like they are contributing to your amazing honeymoon experience. They can also contribute money to the flight, hotel/resort accommodations, shopping, etc.

2. Ask each guest to bring something memorable like a book or movie they love. Have them sign it and add it to your collection.

3. Register at Home Depot! They have a registry too! Have your guests contribute to remodeling a new home or building that deck you always wanted. Or you can register at Down Payment Dreamsand guests can contribute to your future dream home!

4. Card Avenue lets you sign up for gift cards! That way, your guests know exactly what you want.

5. Don’t forget about Simple Registry where you can register for anything.

6. My Registry lets you register from any store on the internet comprised into one easy location.

7. Guests can create their own wine specifically for you through Bottlenotes!

8. Etsy has such unique and amazing things! I actually got part of my bridal thank you gifts and my wedding favors from Etsy (exact details will be in a later post)! They have a registry too!

9. Want to give back to the community? The I Do Foundation allows couples to create a charity that allows guests to contribute to a charitable and great cause (secure online donations directly to the charity)!

10. Spa certificates!! Set up a link on your wedding website for Spa Finder or allow guests to book a spa or massage for you and your partner at your honeymoon resort!

Good luck beauties!

Romance Bride

Courtesy of http://www.Sassychicagobrides.com