An Event Planner's Blog

Top 10 Things DIY Brides and Grooms Forget

We all forget things. And when you don’t do this for a living, its perfectly understandable that with all that’s going on in your head while you’re packing for you wedding weekend, you may forget some things…even some really important things.  Here is a list of what I’ve found to be the most often forgotten items from 10+ years of wedding planning.  And then a little lagniappe list just for giggles…

  1. Marriage license
  2. Passports (for honeymoon travel)
  3. Birth Certificates (to get the marriage license)
  4. Tips (Don’t know who to tip? Check out my To Tip or Not To Tip post!)
  5. Sign in Book (or sign in item) and the pen or markers to go with it (I guess this could be considered two things, but that would make this a list of 11 items and my OCD side won’t allow that!)
  6. Cake knife set
  7. Box or container for cards
  8. Garter
  9. Toss Bouquet
  10. Rings

And a list of not-so-common but real-life moments when items you think you’d never forget were forgotten:

  • Bride or bridesmaid shoes
  • bride’s makeup
  • groom’s pants
  • bridesmaid’s skirt
  • drum sticks (this was the drummer in the band that the bride hired, not the bride, but still…)

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To tip or Not to tip…

To Tip or Not to Tip…. That’s every bride’s question.

There are lots of articles out there explaining who you should tip and who you shouldn’t tip.  At the end of the day, it comes down to this:  if you would tip that person when its not your wedding day, you should tip them when it is your wedding day.  If you feel like someone went out of their way or went above and beyond, tip.  Tips should be 10-20%, just like when you tip at a restaurant, based on the performance of the person giving the service.

Here’s the breakdown:

Tip Expected:

  • Transportation drivers (check first to see if tip is included–you can pay this in advance)
  • Hair and Makeup
  • Head Waiter
  • Bridal Attendant
  • Waitstaff (check first to see if this is included)
  • Bartenders (if they put out a tip jar, you can tip them just for you and the groom.  If not, give a little extra for the guests)
  • Hotel bellmen and concierge
  • Anyone that does something extra for you

Tip Appreciated but not Expected (more of a bonus than a tip):

  • Musicians/DJ
  • Extra Entertainment
  • Caterer
  • Wedding Coordinator
  • Celebrant
  • Anyone that works day-of and on-site

Tips are best in cash, but if that’s not possible, you can add it to a payment by check.  Have tips and payments ready in advance, in sealed, labeled envelopes that will be easy to hand out day-of.  If you have a wedding coordinator, you can give these envelopes to him or her at the rehearsal and check that off of your list.

If you have more advice or questions about tipping, please comment!

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Last week’s Second Line Umbrella’s were a hit!

One of the fun and creative things I get to do in my job is make second line umbrellas.  I talk to each couple about their colors, any special symbols or meaningful markings, and what style they feel suits them best.  These two umbrellas are very different, as you can see!  One is for a wedding couple and one is for a corporate event.  The couple used the graphic from a favorite movie as part of their wedding photo.  I was able to take that image and print it on fabric transfers to add it to their umbrella.  The corporate client’s company colors were “blue and white with pops of teal”. I used the ribbon and accoutrements to fit in with their signature colors.

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Check out Instagram @allabouteventsnola to see more photos from these events

and let me know if I can create a custom umbrella for you!

5 STARS for our Second Line!

We had such a great time planning this lovely couple’s second line!  Looks like they had fun too!

posted 6/6/2017 (updated 6/6/2017)

“All About Events was so pleasant to work with! Carolyn was prompt to contact us and so friendly. Our requests for the second line route and hankie design was completely honored. Carolyn also made us a beautiful umbrella based on our wedding theme. The second line was the most memorable part of our celebration and All About Events made it possible!”

5 Tips for Choosing your Wedding Venue

Your wedding venue choice is a multi-layer decision.  How many people? Indoor or outdoor? Turn-key or DIY?….here’s a handy list of 5 tips to help you narrow down the prospects:

1. How many people are you inviting? Assume 80-85% of those guests will attend (applies to New Orleans weddings).

2. Do you want a chair for everyone? Most people outside of New Orleans have sit-down dinners for all or part of their reception.  Are your guests traveling to the city? Will they be lost without a seat? If so, you can have a chair for everyone but have open seating to keep the mood light.  (the NOLA tradition is to have only 60% seating and high boys for the rest).  Some venues include tables and chairs.

3. Do you want an indoor, outdoor, or combination wedding? In New Orleans you ALWAYS need a rain plain.  There is no safe month from showers.

4. Do you want amplified music? Some venues have limits on how loud and how late your music can be, so get those guidelines in advance, before you fall in love with a space.

5. How much can you afford? To figure that out, take the budget for the wedding (average $150pp in New Orleans, but it can be done for less) and multiply that by 35%.  This is the average portion of a wedding budget that’s spent on the catering and bar.  If your venue is charging a room rental fee on top of food and beverage, or if it allows outside catering and only charges for the room, you need to take the venue rental fee out of your budget and use the remaining as your bottom line. Now that you have your catering and bar number, is it enough to fit with the options your dream venue provides?

 Those are my top 5 tips for choosing your wedding venue. Happy Planning!
Our full-service planning package includes venue selection.
Check out our wedding planning packages and pricing!
http://allaboutevents.net/weddings/

 

5 Things NOT to do at an Outdoor Wedding

Outdoor weddings can be beautiful, especially in the Fall, but don’t believe everything you see on pinterest!  In the south, there are some things you have to watch out for and eliminate. Here are some lessons learned from a recent outdoor wedding we did at a Lake House in Mississippi:

1. Do NOT forget that it will most likely be daytime when your guests arrive! Have cold water available for guests as they wait for the ceremony to start. In the South, at least, it can still be very hot during the day.  Make sure you keep your guests hydrated with iced water.  If its feasible, provide shaded areas over your ceremony seating and hand fans or parasols if shade is not an option.

2. Do NOT forget to mic your officiant. No matter how loud you think he can project, wind and outdoor noises will drown out his voice…and yours when you’re saying your vows!

3. Do NOT forget to have bug spray available for guests.  You can tuck cans of it in baskets in the restrooms and in spots that photos won’t catch them in the background.

4. Do NOT assume you are immune to wind. Stay away from tall floral centerpieces if its windy outside.  They will fall over. So will pipe and drape.  Instead, if you want a tall element, use sculptures or tall, heavy cylinder glass with low floating candles and flowers.

5. Do NOT place your cake outdoors. This is the one everyone hates to hear, but just don’t do it!  If you need bug spray to keep the mosquitoes off of your guests, the cake needs protection too.  To prove this point, here is a photo, taken about an hour after it got dark at our last outdoor wedding.  Note:  this cake has butter cream icing. The Groom’s cake was fondant and bugs did not stick to it, but it did sweat.  So unless you like your cake with a side of West Nile, keep it indoors.

So gross. How did we handle this???

Most cakes have a pretty thick icing layer.  

When we cut the cake, we took the smooth edge of the knife and 

scraped off the outermost portion of icing, then served the cake bug-free.

We Were the Couple’s Choice for 2016!

The WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Awards recognize the top 5% of local wedding professionals on WeddingWire that demonstrate excellence in quality, service, responsiveness, and professionalism. Winners are selected solely based on reviews from over 1.2 million newlyweds and are determined by a combination of excellence in four factors: overall rating, total number of reviews, review performance from 2016, and consistency of reviews from year to year.

Thank you to all of our staff, vendors and amazing clients!