by Christie A. Brogan {4.20.17}

At the end of the day, the goal is for it all to “gel”…the venue, the dress, the decor, the flowers, the cake, the food service style…everything.  We can warn you about the “rabbit hole” that Pinterest can become when wedding planning, but no one quite understands until they encounter the tragic Pinterest “fail”. And, although, we have all had a good laugh at a lopsided Minion cake, it’s especially painful to see an epic “fail” on your wedding day. To be clear, this discussion is not directed specifically at the DIY bride. No, this is for the wedding inspiration board that began innocently enough with a few lovely images and, after a few sleepless-blurry-eyed-4am pinning sessions, it ends up looking like you and all of your alter egos took turns.  There are a few options for avoiding this over-inspired disaster.

Option #1 – Hire an Event Planner/Designer.  This seems like a no-brainer, but the right wedding pro can absolutely capture your style, transform a space, incorporate the key elements throughout, guide you on how each piece – food, decor, flowers, cake, paper, design, etc. – fits together, and (little known fact) can help you stay on budget. They can translate your wedding day vision into a reality…one that “gels”.

Wedding Planning Tip

{TIP:  This applies to all of the potential wedding professionals you might employ for your big day.   From the photographer to the florists, from the cake baker to the DJ…if their product or service fits in your budget, it is money well spent. Lean on the pros experience and advice for making the most of your wedding budget dollars.}

Of course, hiring a Pro is not always possible. Whatever the reason (typically budget), all is not lost.

{And, just in time for today’s topic are some gorgeous images courtesy of AJ Dunlap Photography. Our lovely couple, Katherine and Caleb, hosted their ceremony and reception at Bakery 105 this past Fall. Things we love? Everything. It’s a great example of a wedding that “gels”.

Of course, nods to all the pros who helped make for such a memorable day: Photos by AJ Dunlap Photography; Ceremony & Reception at Bakery 105; Catering by 128 South Events & Catering; Florals by Eco Chic Blossoms; Lighting by High Performance Lighting; Dress from Coastal Knot Bridal; Hair & Makeup by Seagrass Salon & Spa; Party Rentals by Party Suppliers; Band – Soul DeCree; and, Cake by Whole Foods}

Here are a few things thoughts on Option #2 – You.

  1. Venue – The venue sets the stage for your wedding. If you want a rustic feel, it’s going to be much easier to achieve in a raw warehouse space, historic building, or barn versus a hotel ballroom. If you pick the right backdrop, less will be required for what’s next…decor and flowers.
  2. Decor & Flowers – Start by picking one to three colors for your palette. Keep design elements simple and repeat them in different places. If you and your beloved met at the beach and you want to include a nautical theme, consider some nautical elements other than seashells and starfish like our happy couple did for their special day. Again, lean on the pros for guidance. Your florist can suggest options that will achieve your vision in a cost-effective way.
  3. Food Service – Make sure the food service style compliments the event as a whole. I can’t tell you the number of conversations we’ve had with a couple who wants a cocktail style reception with food stations, but also wants chargers at each table setting and seats for every guest. What’s the problem, you ask? Cocktail-style/Stationed receptions by definition are a relaxed, mingling event style that include seating for about 70% of the guests, no table assignments…and therefore no chargers. While chargers make for a beautifully finished look to seating tables, they are far better suited for a plated dinner or even buffet style food service.

The truth is our list of things to consider could be 10 times this size, but this is a really great place to start. Happy planning!

Next week…Why hire a planner?

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Christie Brogan {Co-Owner & Partner – 128 South and Bakery 105 in Wilmington, NC. Entrepreneur, Event Planner, Wedding Geek, Writer, Business Innovator, Idea Maker, Boot Camp Betty, Yoga Nut, Animal Lover, Avid Reader}

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