DIY Weddings: Planning and Coordinating

March 31st, 2013
If you hire a good planner, this is all you should have to think about on your wedding day.

If you hire a good planner, this is all you should have to think about on your wedding day. Photo by MWD Photography.

I’ve written a lot about do-it-yourself weddings lately, and here are my final thoughts (probably) on the subject.  Should you plan and manage your wedding yourself?  Yes–and no.

Most people can do much of the planning themselves.  Hiring vendors is not difficult.  You will probably also want to plan the decor yourself so that it reflects your taste.  Of course, if you’d rather not handle all the details yourself, by all means, hire a wedding planner.

The place where a lot of people get stuck in the planning process is scheduling the wedding day and the logistics of making everything happen.  It turns out that these are  special skills.  And so you will likely want to have a professional planner on hand.  One of my favorite parts of this job is taking a tangled mass of good ideas and turning it into a usable plan.  Actually, I really like seeing the smile of relief on my clients’ faces when I do that.

Even if you are able to do the scheduling and logistics yourself, actually managing what happens on your wedding day is another matter.  I like to use a theatre metaphor to describe it:  You are the star of the show; you can also be the director and the producer.  But you need a good stage manager to make sure that you shine.

This might be predictable coming from me, but I have seen enough problems and near-disasters to know that it really does make a difference:  Make sure you have someone with practical, hands-on experience managing your wedding day.  Don’t try to do it yourself.

Another Word About Wedding Etiquette

March 25th, 2013
Etiquette does not prescribe how much money you should spend on anything.  Photo by Peter Coombs.

Etiquette does not prescribe how much you should spend. Photo by Peter Coombs.

I have another pithy little quote for you from Miss Manners on {Painfully Proper} Weddings by Judith Martin.  She is here talking about the misplaced notion that etiquette requires spending huge sums of money on any wedding.

Etiquette was portrayed as the villain–the handmaiden of commercialism, whose insidious ceremonial and emotional arguments always favored the spending of extravagant sums of money.  It is made to seem rude to ask prices for commercial services and incorrect to limit wedding expenditures…  Miss Manners is outraged.  Etiquette does not practice extortion.

I’ve touched on this before, so this is just a reminder:  If any wedding vendor tries to induce you to spend more by citing the requirements of etiquette, you can tell them that Miss Manners says that “Etiquette does not practice extortion.”  And then maybe find a better vendor.

More Recent Wedding Photos

March 18th, 2013

I’m so lucky to get these wonderful photos of the weddings I work on.  I have the professional photos by Ann and Kam Photography and Cinema for your viewing pleasure.  Click on the photo below to see all of them.

Click here to see photos from the State Fair Wedding.  Photo by Ann Oleinik.

Click here to see photos from the State Fair Wedding. Photo by Ann Oleinik.

More?

Save The Date: Wedding Garage Sale

March 11th, 2013
Do you have leftover wedding supplies that someone else can use?  I have the solution!

Do you have leftover wedding supplies that someone else can use? I have the solution! Photo by hannahelaine photography (hannahelaine.com).

I have only the sketchiest details so far, but I know about another really interesting event that I think you’re going to want to put on your calendar, whether you are currently planning a wedding, are recently married, or are, yourself, a wedding vendor.

The Chicago Green Wedding Alliance is sponsoring a giant garage sale for wedding items.  If you have items that might be useful for someone planning a wedding, you can donate them to the CGWA for the sale on April 21.  Not only will a portion of the proceeds be donated to charity, but it’s a highly sustainable, green way to re-use wedding items.

I’ll have more details soon and will post them as they become available.  But mark your calendar now.