Your wedding day is likely something you have looked forward to most of your life. You’ve been dreaming of it for years, and now that you are engaged, you cannot wait for the big day to get here. Be sure to prepare yourself for the road between your engagement and the main event. Wedding planning can be extremely stressful and exhausting, not to mention the strain it can put on relationships. With these tips, you can help alleviate some of that stress so you can focus on the fun.
1. Know yourself, know what you want. Of course, you want to take your parents, your grandparents, and your friends’ opinions into account, but remember this is your wedding (meaning yours and your partners). Be sure to gauge your emotions and how those weigh on what is important to you in planning your day. Take care to nurture your feelings while also taking others’ into account and handling any disagreements with them tactfully and gracefully. This will prevent conflict and controversy and keep everyone on the same page.
2. Choose your wedding party carefully. Number 1 brings us to Number 2. Be selective in who you choose to surround yourself with while planning and carrying out your wedding. Your bridal party should be comprised of family and friends who know you well, have seen you at your best and worst, and can handle all those ups and downs right along with you. Having people whose opinions you value and you know you can lean on can help you manage tough decisions and the emotional roller-coaster that can accompany planning a wedding
3. Plan ahead. Most wedding planners will recommend starting the planning process 12-16 months ahead of time and to create an all-encompassing checklist. This allows you plenty of time to secure your venue, book your service vendors (think florist, caterer, DJ or band, photographer, etc., etc.), find the perfect dress for you and your bridesmaids and have them altered, order your invitations, and still allow time to make changes or rectify any mistakes that pop up along the way. Waiting until the last minute to plan can lead to difficulty finding availability for everything from a pastor to flights for the honeymoon. You want your big day to go off without a hitch and be magical, not a chaotic hodgepodge, so plan far in advance.
4. Use referrals. Piggybacking off of number 3, use referrals when booking your vendors and service providers. Ask your friends who they used, research local resource guides, and ask for references. Don’t be afraid to ask questions to make sure you know exactly what you are paying for, and they have no question as to what your expectations are. Done in conjunction with plenty of time and planning, this will allow time for any wrinkles to be ironed out.
5. Sweat it out. Be sure to exercise regularly during your wedding planning. Not only will this keep you in shape and prevent stress eating from packing on pounds, exercising will help you work out the stress, clear your mind, and keep you focused. Whether you prefer yoga, hitting the trails, or cross training, maintaining a regular exercise routine is key in counterbalancing stress. Not only will you look fabulous in your dress, you will be relaxed and on top of your game for your big day.
6. Eat healthy. As mentioned above, this can be a very stressful time. Eating a healthy diet packed with all your essential vitamins and minerals will help your body combat stress and stay healthy. You don’t want to be run down or have a weakened immune system and end up sick. Balance this with plenty of water and enough sleep so you will be looking and feeling your best on the big day.
7. Remember to have fun. So often brides get so caught up in the planning that they forget to actually enjoy the experience of planning their wedding and walking down the aisle. This is likely the biggest decision you have ever made and the beginning of a new life together. Embrace all that comes with it and know that even if things don’t go exactly perfect, the most important aspect of it all is enjoying this time with your partner. Take it all in and make the day yours to remember together for a lifetime.
Planning a wedding is a huge task, but with planning and care, it can be an exciting, enjoyable journey. Using the tips above can help you manage the stress and keep your focus on sharing this experience and starting your life together on a happy note.
***And don't forget -- Hiring a Wedding Planner will give you peace of mind and can even help SAVE you money!
- by Christine Forster, My Big Day
Last night I was so looking forward to a nice, relaxing evening at my nail salon... ahhh.... one hour in a massage chair, getting a pedicure, reading wedding magazines. But that's not how the night played out.
The salon was hopping - nearly every chair was taken. I was sat next to a loud, abrasive brunette and her friend who were having a little bit of a girls night. The brunette clearly didn't notice the soothing whimsical music in the background and chairs lined with ladies reclined with their eyes closed. Her voice carried across the entire salon. She spoke as if her words of wisdom were meant for everyone there.
For a full hour I sat and listened to opinion after opinion and bad advice after bad advice. The poor bride was exhausted by the brunette, I could tell. Never once did her friend/bridesmaid ask her how she was feeling or what she would like. She just gave advice as if she were a seasoned pro.
Things to leave up to the Pros:
So... did I step in and call the Bad Bridesmaid out?
No. I could have passed the bride my card and offered to help, but some situations aren't worth jumping in the middle of. Let's hope the bride comes to her senses and decides to hire a pro!
-Place a large dinner plate in the middle of a place mat.
-If soup is being served, a soup bowl is placed on top of the dinner plate.
-The fork is placed to the left of the plate.
-The knife and spoon are on the right. The knife is positioned directly next to the plate with the blade facing in. The spoon is right of the knife.
-Soup spoons can be found to the right of the beverage spoon.
-If salad is being served, include a smaller salad fork to the left of the dinner fork.
-And what’s dinner without bread? The bread plate is placed above the forks with a butter knife on top.
-Place the water glass directly above the knife.
-As for the napkin, placement is at the discretion of the host. Under the forks or between the dinner plate and bowl are two popular choices.
A formal place setting is very similar to the informal, just with a few more add-ons.
-Begin with the informal setting.
-Include a wine glass next to the water glass above the knife.
-A dessert spoon can be added to the right of the beverage spoon, a fork can be placed to the right of the dinner fork, both placed above the plate, or simply brought out with the course.
-To dress your table up a bit, add a charger beneath the dinner plate for extra flare.
As with any event, make it your own! The above instructions are simply guidelines and are not absolute rules. Feel free to create your own table setting that will make your table unforgettable.
My Big Day is an Event Planning company based in Northern Colorado.
We specialize in weddings, private parties, corporate events, non-profit fundraisers, and our own signature events.
As event planners, we serve the entire front range; Northern Colorado, Southern Wyoming and mountain venues.
My Big Day llc
Phone: 970-613-1455 or 303-886-3068
Located in Loveland, CO
-by Jessica Weimer, My Big Day
Keeping your wedding memento’s or selling them is a tough decision. If you’re sentimental you will most likely keep most or your décor, but is it worth the space it takes up in your home/garage? If you sell everything most likely you will regret it when that special occasion comes up and you are missing the cake knives you didn’t think you’d need. Here is a list of must keep items and some items you need to sell.
Toasting Glasses: While this might not have been the item you spent days deciding on, it is still something that could come in handy in the future! If you are fond of traditions this could be something worth saving for future anniversaries. They are a great conversation piece when people admire your glass cabinet; it could remind you of that great toast your brother gave. These are also something that may be hard to sell, especially if they are engraved or have a personal touch.
Cake Knives: Cake knives are something that can be sold or kept. If you are an entertainer then they may be a must to keep, since you will probably need something to cut a cake in the future. In that case they are also a great conversation piece, every time you pull them out you can reminisce of the cake at your wedding. Or maybe you really want to store them in a shadow box and show off the amazing detail or engraving you chose. They can be used as a tradition you hand down to your child when they get married. If you aren’t attached to them they could be sold or even give them to another friend who is getting married soon!
Wedding Gown: This is definitely a personal choice by the bride, some brides really don’t put much sentimental value into their bridal gown but to others it is the most important dress you will ever wear. There are some businesses who will preserve it in a box for you, or even a more unique idea is to get it preserved in a shadow box and hang it in your closet one day, depending if your closet is big enough! If you don’t mind changing up your dress, you could alter it into a different dress you could wear for a vow renewal or a significant anniversary! These are great ways to keep the dress looking good and the sentimental value intact.
If you don’t mind selling your wedding gown, there are always re-sale shops you can go to. (My Big Day recommends Wed Wisely in Loveland, CO.) Or even donating your dress to be given to a woman less fortunate who needs the help and would love her dream wedding!
Décor: When your wedding is over you are left with great memories and tons of the décor you spent many hours perusing and then purchasing! If like most people, you don’t have use for 50 cylinder vases, there is hope to still sell some of it. Recycle Your Wedding is a great website that lets you list your wedding goods and the suggested price and people can look through and buy. It also has a wanted section in which people describe what they’re looking for and the amount they would like to pay. This will at least let you hopefully sell the majority of your things. There is no good or bad time to sell your wedding goods, as brides look year round for the perfect find! Though if your wedding was trendy it is best to try to sell as soon as possible, because chevron may have been the cutest thing ever this year but next year it may be out. Craigslist is also a good site that can help you unload your wedding decor, but don't expect to get even half of what you paid. The site is best for re-homing your goods, but not making money.
Some décor is worth keeping such as the gorgeous arch you may have constructed to get married under. If you and your new husband are moving into a home and have a backyard, it would be the perfect garden accent and be a really good conversation piece.
My Big Day offers affordable rentals for clients looking to have the latest trends with decorations, but who don't want to purchase 25 centerpieces that will never see the light of day again.
When it comes to selling things from your wedding, it can be a tough decision to part with things that have so many memories, but also it could save you the headache of having to store it and then just throwing it out eventually.
by Randi Juric, My Big Day
Being a good hostess doesn’t take a lot of skill. Being a good hostess is all about the timing and the come one come all attitude. All you need to remember is smiles, full drinks, full plates, great atmosphere. Here are a few structure points to being the best hostess you can be. As a hostess you are the greeter, server, entertainer, problem solver, and cleanup crew unless of course you hire someone for any of these jobs. Even if you hire someone a super hostess still eyeballs the help to make sure it’s getting done right. A great hostess can super charge the room just by their smile and presentation as you greet a guest. Be infectious and make the crowd happy and go lucky with a smile! We call that a Super Hospi Hostess, hospi stands for hospitality.
1. Set a clear start and end:
When you send out an invite be sure you list time, place, start and end dates. This will allow people to plan for the event accordingly. This will also ensure your party loving friends don’t overstay their welcome. Be sure to add an RSVP due date for a better had count for your event.
Be prepared to make confirmation calls to those who haven’t RSVP yet. Always be sure to ask if you think you may need to make special accommodations for some one.
When guests start to arrive be sure to make the rules clear “take your shoes off and head on in” or “There is/is not a smoking area out back”. Be sure you keep the environment comfortable for all guests and you too! Welcome them in and shoe them the layout. Everyone loves snacks and drinks, it’s the best part of the party!! Remember as your walking around mingling and welcoming new guests it’s OK to eyeball everyone’s plates and drinks. Be sure to ask in passing if they need a refill on any food or drink or if you can take their plate. Remember to SMILE SMILE SMILE!
4. Mingle, Mingle, Mingle:
It is very important to mingle and mix things up. Walk around and talk with your guests, catch up and maybe get people who may not know each other to start a conversation. Keep your background music in mind should you decide to play some.
Always put together a playlist that fits your crowd and don’t play it too loud. We want the music to entertain but not blast away!
5. Clean up:
Clean as you go! It makes things so much easier as you go to pick up and clean as your walking around mingling. Offer to take some ones trash for them. A hostess never leaves their guest with their hands full.
6. The wind down and long good bye:
Read your crowd! Timing is everything on the wind down. About an hour to thirty minutes before your scheduled end time take the time to look around and see if your guests seem to be winding down or going strong. If they are winding down you can turn your music down in the background more and start cleaning up a little more heavily as you mingle and say your goodbyes to those leaving. You can also thank people for coming as you’re cleaning up in their area before you move on, this will give the guest the impression the party is coming to an end politely. On the other hand if your guests seem to still be going strong and you don’t have to be out by a specific time start asking for refills again or if you can get them anything else. You can also turn the music up just a smidge. Mingle and ask your guests if they have met so and so yet and see if you can make some new connections.
7. The morning after:
Give some of your guests’ calls over the next week and thank them for coming again and see if they have any feedback for you good or bad, just listen to what they have to say there is always room for improvement. This helps you refine your hosting skills and see what works and doesn’t so well. This also gives you an opportunity to give more invites if you have other events you want to have some guests to join. Your guests will love the follow up and the time you took to say thank you again. It leaves a great impression that you cared to call them and ask if they had a good time.
These hostess tips have been brought to you by My Big Day Events!
Serving the Front Range, Mountains and S. Wyoming.
Parties - Planning - Weddings & More!
Every wedding is unique and My Big Day treats every day as such. When planning your wedding, smart brides ask for tips to pull the day off smoothly. The secret to a stress-free wedding day? Giving yourself enough time to prepare for a VERY full day!
Get the complete breakdown below to what happens on your wedding day. (in general of course)
Bride's hair: One hour, depending on the style. This gives enough time to get it right and make any tweaks or changes from the trial run.
Bride's makeup: 45 to 60 minutes, depending on the makeup style the bride selects
Bridesmaids' hair: 30 minutes per person. (depending on style)
Bridesmaids' makeup: 45 minutes per person.
The order: When your hairstylist arrives, have her start on your bridesmaids first. This way, the bride can go last so that when her photographer arrives, they catch those last-minute 'getting ready' shots, and the bride looks the freshest.
Photographer arrival time: One hour prior to formal photo time. This gives your photographer time to walk your wedding site for any last minute photo ideas, and to capture photos of the bride getting ready.
5+ Girls Requiring Hair/Make-up Styling: ask your stylist to bring an assistant to cut down on time. For makeup, add an assistant after yourself plus two.
Traveling to a Salon: Double the travel time you anticipate — better to have too much time than not enough.
Pre-ceremony photos of the bride with her family and attendants/groom with his family and attendants: Two to three minutes per shot; more if the groups are very large, and less if they are very small. "You must also consider how punctual the groups tend to be and possibly cushion the schedule to allow for unexpected delays.
First look: 15-30 minutes.
Groom and groomsmen arrive: An hour and a half before the ceremony.
Bride and bridesmaids arrive: An hour before the ceremony. We want to make sure you are hidden before your guests arrive, so they don't get an early peek at your gown! *If the bride won't be taking photos at the church or ceremony site prior to the ceremony, then she can arrive moments before walking down the aisle and wait in the limo until it's time.
Ideal ceremony length: 30 minutes. It's enough time to have meaningful readings and music to make your ceremony unique and memorable.
Receiving line: For a ceremony with 100 guests or less, this will take 12-15 minutes. With 150 guests, allow 20+ minutes. If you're expecting more than 150 guests, consider skipping the receiving line and visiting guests at their tables during dinner instead.
Maximum gap between ceremony and reception: One hour. Any more than that, and we’d recommend suggesting places for your guests to visit between the ceremony and cocktail hour.
Family photos: Two to three minutes per shot — if your family is properly organized!
Bridal party: Two to three minutes per shot.
Didn't have a first look? Allow 30 minutes post-ceremony for photos of you and your groom.
If you did have a first look, you'll still want 15-20 minutes post-ceremony for just the two of you.
*Save photos of very large groups (like classmates, coworkers, and large extended family groups) for the reception, when your DJ or band leader can make an announcement to gather everyone. You'll be able to take the photos much faster than trying to track down 50 people during the cocktail hour.
Ideal event length: Six hours. This will allow an hour for cocktails, two hours for dinner, and three hours for dancing.
First dance: This can take place immediately after the bride and groom enter the reception, following the conclusion of dinner, or right after dessert.
Father/daughter dance: Immediately following the first dance.
Mother/son dance: Immediately following the father/daughter dance. Or, sometimes, this dance is shared with the father/daughter dance.
Welcome toast: Given by the father of the bride or by the bride and groom.
Toasts: Ladies first! Start with the maid of honor, followed by the best man.
Guests invited to dance: Open up the dance floor, and get the party started!
Dessert: Two hours before the reception ends. Cake cutting, cupcakes, or whatever you have planned.
Bouquet and garter tosses: Right after the cake cutting, or about two hours before the end of the reception.
Late-night snacks: A popular trend, many couples start passing around bite-size snacks at this point to refuel guests.
Farewell: If you're doing a sparkler farewell, for example, have guests start lining up about 10 minutes before you plan to exit.
For more tips and helpful hints, or to hire My Big Day as your wedding planner -
Contact My Big Day!
Christine Kovacs Forster, Owner/ Party Planner
My Big Day llc
Phone: 970-613-1455 or 303-886-3068
Located in Loveland, CO
As event planners, we serve the entire front range; Northern Colorado, Southern Wyoming and mountain venues.
One of My Big Day's clients is Restoration Medical Aesthetics in Greeley. There is SO much we could say about their lovely staff, professionalism, product line, etc... but we don't have time for that today.
What's most important for our My Big Day followers, and Bride's to Be is that RMA is offering an AMAZING deal on Latisse! If you love this product, or perhaps want to use it for longer, natural lashes on your BIG DAY, you MUST stop in to take advantage of their special.
CLICK HERE to visit the Restoration Medical blog, listing this special
Here is their contact info:
Restoration Medical Aesthetics
Phone: (970) 396-4856
Address: 5100 West 20th Street A., Greeley, CO 80634
Mon - Fri: 9:00am - 5:00pm
Sat: 9:00am - 2:00pm
No event – no matter how well-planned and well-run – is immune to the occasional crisis or disaster.
My Big Day believes a good event planner will be able to think on his or her feet for the small stuff, and have a solid crisis plan in place for dealing with the biggies. You can’t possibly expect to plan for every type of crisis, but a little advance planning will go a long way to ensure that you can handle whatever comes your way!
If you are well prepared, chances are you won't need the Plan B. But that one time when everything goes wrong, you'll be glad you were prepared!
-My Big Day
Many factors should be weighed when deciding on the right amount of food for your event. Of course, first you must know the number of people attending. However, the length of the event is also very important, as is the type of event and the type of food you plan to serve.
For example, an evening cocktail party requires considerably less food than an entire afternoon or all-day event. The longer guests remain, the more they’ll consume. It’s funny, but over time people get hungry and thirsty over and over again.
When estimating, always round up to be on the safe side. Some will eat more, others less. It will all balance out in the end. Try to anticipate which foods/drinks are most popular and will disappear quickly. Order more of these selections.
We love a theme. Every party needs one, every event deserves one. Follow us on our journey down the path of creative party planning & exceptional events!