Monthly Archives: May 2018

Complete Wedding Vendor List

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unique spring wedding idea: patterned black and white table coverings with purple pastel chair bowsThat old adage about taking a village to raise a child also applies to a wedding; any bride or groom can tell you that it took a city (or at least it felt like it!) to turn their wedding day vision into reality. Before you start searching for and contacting your city of wedding vendors, confirm the most vital details like your ceremony site and venue (after all, you have to give the caterer and photographer your location!).

Start by having a conversation with your fiancée (and any family contributing to the big day). Set a budget, estimated guest list (at least, a number), and an idea of the time of year. None of these details need to be final; an estimate is a good start. For the date, for example, have a season or month that you prefer. As you contact wedding venues and ceremony sites (which can be one and the same), give them the season or month and ask for open dates in that period. Tour wedding venues with open dates that fit your criteria, style, and budget. Ask if the venue has an open vendor policy or if the venue has a list of preferred vendors to choose from. Book the venue that checks off all the important boxes, and get ready for the next step: finding vendors that can make the perfect wedding dessert, take fantastic photos and video, serve a scrumptious wedding meal, provide wonderful wedding reception decor…

How to find the right wedding vendors

There are quite a few wedding vendors out there, and just as many different ways to find them. Be cautious about who you hire. Even though your friend or family member might recommend a vendor or the website looks great doesn’t mean they can provide the high-quality service you want. If you feel overwhelmed, don’t hesitate to ask your venue staff for recommendations (or ask them to coordinate all the vendors as your wedding planner).

As you search for wedding vendors, be concerned about common red flags such as bad business reviews, no business address, or any hint that the company has a lack of experience (and back-ups, just in case!). Instead, look for favorable reviews, photos, videos, and satisfactory business ratings and customers (it doesn’t help if they are excellent at what they do if they can’t manage their appointments and finances).

Once you compile a list of prospective vendors for your big day, schedule face-to-face meetings. Be prepared to walk away from vendors who don’t have a business location to meet, seem inexperienced, don’t listen to you, have hidden fees that push the cost over budget, or want you to sign a contract with fine print that makes you uncomfortable.

Ask your vendors how you should communicate with them in the future. This is important so you don’t feel ignored and get the responsiveness you need as you plan your big day. Make sure they have a line of communication you’re comfortable with; you don’t want to choose a vendor who’s only comfortable with electronic communication and ignores your phone calls (or vice versa).

Wedding vendors to contact

___Wedding Attire (Dress & Tux)

___Invitation Printer (& online invites if applicable)

___Photographer

___Videographer

___Caterer

___Baker

___Entertainer (DJ or Band)

___Florist

___Table Décor

Bad Weather? Tips for a Fantastic Rainy Day Wedding

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wedding venue with candles, uplighting, and glittery snow back dropWe may not have a rainy season here, but the one thing you can count on in Wisconsin is that our weather is incredibly unpredictable. One day the weather can be sunny and warm, the next day it’s raining and, well, not-so-warm. For couples planning a wedding, unpredictable weather can be one of the most frustrating part of planning a weather. Every other wedding detail can be planned and carefully laid out; as for the weather, good luck.

Even if your wedding is indoors (hopefully at a beautiful wedding venue), your guests are still going to have to tramp through the rain and deal with very unpleasant (hot or cold) temperatures. Don’t let either situation rain on your big day—instead use these tips for an incredible wedding day (even when the weather is not incredible!).

Expect the best, make plans for the worst.

Weather forecasts can be a blessing and a curse. On one hand, they give you a glimpse into the future so you can prepare…BUT they can also be wrong. If the weather forecast looks drear, plan accordingly for a rainy day. Make bad weather “chic” and fashionable. Choose waterproof make-up and buy rainboots (and a rain jacket?) and umbrellas (for the bridal party too!) for some really cute photo opportunities. Stock up on towels, which can be handy for drying off surfaces before you or your attendants sit on it.

Keep your guests comfortable.

Comfortable guests are happy, stay-on-the-dance-floor guests. Keep their rainy day comfort in mind as you plan. Look for wedding venues with close parking (or covered parking) so they don’t have to tramp through the mud. If there is any possibility the day could be cool, look for a wedding venue with a foyer where guests can warm up (perhaps by a fireplace?). For a hot rainy day, ask the venue if they have air conditioning or use these tips to keep guests cool and comfortable.

Pack an emergency kit.

In addition to umbrellas and towels, pack a wedding day survival kit for all those rainy day wedding emergencies. Pack hair products, a hair dryer, and make-up so you can touch up your hair and makeup—and don’t end up looking like a wet dog. Besides rain boots, carry a couple of pairs of dry and comfortable shoes so you don’t have to walk around in wet shoes.

Have a plan B.

When rain threatens your big day, be flexible with your plans and keep it all in perspective. If you’re planning an outdoor ceremony, make a plan B for a rainy day. Choose a wedding venue with space for a ceremony and a reception. When the weather forecast resembles a flood, activate your plan B for a beautiful indoor ceremony and communicate accordingly with venue staff, vendors, and guests. If your outdoor plans were only for outdoor photo opportunities, embrace the chance for some really and unique wedding rainy day photos. Keep everything in perspective. Remember your wedding day is what you make of it—even in the rain.